Solabode 003 is being drawn up as I write with building start programmed for mid to late summer. The house will be located on a semi rural north facing sloping site in Geraldine, South Canterbury. Several design changes have been made to this home in response to the harsh winter climate and from lessons learnt on the other homes built. For example a steep pitch truss roof to shed snow and reduce costs but with a sloping ceiling maintained within. The design features three bedrooms or really 2 bedrooms and a study, but only one bathroom as the clients have no need of two. Adobe veneer walls for thermal mass have been included in the main living room and solar access space but left out of other rooms to reduce costs. Glass louver windows have been incorporated above internal doors to distribute warm air throughout the home. Finally, insulation levels have been increased to R6.8 in the ceilings and R5.0 in the walls except the north wall left at R3.2. Underfloor and perimeter insulation has been doubled to 100mm thick.
Rimmer house nearing completion at Labour Weekend Earth Building Conference House Tour, October 2011, photos by Ben Nicholls. A very neat carpentry job by the builder Tim, with exquisite attention to detail in the junction areas between Onduline and Macrocarpa claddings. Note that plywood lined internal walls are for bracing behind the 150 thick adobe mass feature walls which are yet to be built in these photos.