Monday, August 10, 2009


When we did the framing for the house, the project seemed to be moving along very quickly. I think it was because we got to see big progress in a short period of time. Doing detail work takes just as much work but there is less to see, so it can seem like less is getting done. I have to keep reminding myself that we're still moving forward.

The other thing about time is, it just slips by. Sometimes doing things related to the project, but not directly related to building. For example: going to the store. Which I do a lot. Perhaps if I was a more experienced builder I'd be at the store less, but it seems like I go to the store for something 3 out of every 4 days. Either it is more wood, a 45 degree vent pipe, a new saw blade... And since we are now not in an industrial area, but out in the sticks of Marin county, it takes about 30 minutes to get to a good lumber store. That's one way.

I bring this up to say that things always take longer than you think they will. In the build space, we never had do to much clean up from one day to the next. I could come in and pick up right where I left off. Here I have to setup and clean up at the start and end of each day.

So, in keeping with doing things in an odd order, we decided to work on one set of rafters and then move on to the next. We'd put up vapor barrier, stuff in the insulation from the top, foam around the insulation, then sheath. The reasons for this are, 1) the foam can has to be upside down to shoot the foam out, so we couldn't have foamed from the inside - we do it from the top. 2) this way we can work from inside the house on ladders or on the loft surfaces and just reach over. This saved us from dealing with setting up and moving ladders or scaffolding on the outside.

But this is all taking longer than we thought, so we are slipping our schedule out by a week.


  1. Between roof and underlying insulation (Styrofoam) is my question if there should be an air gap? or if it is not needed? I can not really see how you do in the pictures. According to Swedish standard you should always have an air gap between roof and internal insulation. But on the other hand, usually you do not use styrofoam. Can you please tell me on this.....building my own tiny house here in sweden.

  2. Hello Helena,
    Yes. We have a gap between the insulation and the roof. In terms of layers, from the inside of the house (bottom of list) to the metal roof (top of list) we have:

    * Green Metal roof
    * tar paper
    * 1/2 inch plywood
    * 1.5 inch air space
    * 2 inch Styrofoam insulation
    * 6mm plastic for vapor barrier
    * inside paneling

  3. Thanks so much for the quick answer, now I can go on with my work. Your pictures has helpt me a lot.


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