paper igloo architecture and design

building a passivhaus

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Utility room splashback tiling

January 5, 2017

The Utility room splashback tiling is now underway...

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Concrete benches for the dining area

December 17, 2016

Over the last few weekends we have made some concrete panels for the bench seat in the dining area.

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WWHR installation finished

November 30, 2016

This week I finished the WWHR installation....

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Ice - on the outside!

November 26, 2016

Today we had some ice on the outside of the windows!

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Fire stopping to services

November 25, 2016

Fire stopping and insulating the SVP

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Half of the scaffolding down

October 23, 2016

We have now taken the scaffolding down on the north and west elevations to let these two sides start to weather properly over the coming years.

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October 19, 2016

Here are some brief shots of some patterns made during the last phase of cladding...

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Final Airtightness Test completed!

October 19, 2016

Today we had our final airtightness test and the result was.....

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Ensuite 'crumpled' ceiling

October 16, 2016

This week we began the ‘crumpled’ ensuite ceiling in the master bedroom.

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Top scaffolding tier coming down

October 6, 2016

This week we took down the top tier of scaffolding to the North and West elevations.

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North elevation cladding continues

September 17, 2016

During the previous month we have made some further progress on the North elevation cladding & given the West elevation a haircut!

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North elevation cladding begun!

August 1, 2016

North elevation ready for cladding!

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Integrated planter complete!

July 10, 2016

This weekend we finally decided to go for it and construct the integrated planter!

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West elevation cladding continues

July 3, 2016

As the cladding progresses the form of the building is becoming more apparent...

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Final ceiling sheets on

May 20, 2016

This week we finished the last of the ceiling Fermacell boards...

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First finishing joinery fitted!

May 14, 2016

Today we had some beautiful plywood boxes fitted.

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Bathroom tiling completed.

April 1, 2016

This week we finished the bathroom tiling.

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Upper storey flooring completed!

March 30, 2016

All of our free time time month has been spent finishing the upper storey floor finishes....

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Staircase installation

March 2, 2016

Today saw the installation of the staircase!

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Staircase construction underway!

February 25, 2016

Staircase construction underway!

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Plastering second phase completed

February 20, 2016

This month saw the second phase of the plastering completed.

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Plastering preparations

January 20, 2016

This month featured more preparations to get ready for the next phase of plastering....

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Plumbing first fix progresses...

January 5, 2016

Over the Christmas holidays we progressed the plumbing first fix....

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Kitchen installation begins

December 14, 2015

This week we began our kitchen installation!

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Plastering begun!

December 9, 2015

This week we had the first phase of plastering undertaken.

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Solar thermal & PV installations begin...

December 4, 2015

This week the solar thermal & PV installations begin...

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Passivhaus Trust Open Day 2015

November 15, 2015

This weekend we took part for the second year in the Passivhaus Trust Open Days...

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Electrical first fix completed

October 10, 2015

Electrical first fix completed!

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One more cladding post before autumn!

October 3, 2015

One more cladding post before autumn!

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MVHR valves powder coated in... black!

September 28, 2015

A brief interlude from the cladding posts as the MVHR valves arrived after being powder coated!

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Cladding continues....

September 23, 2015

More cladding on the west elevation....

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Cladding (finally!) begun...

August 17, 2015

And finally…. we begin the cladding! 

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(More) pre-cladding preparations...

August 7, 2015

(More) pre-cladding preparations...

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Pre-cladding preparations...

July 26, 2015

This week we undertook some pre-cladding preparations...

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Service cavity batten installation

June 29, 2015

Today the service cavity batten installation began…

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First floor acoustic flooring system installed

June 28, 2015

This weekend we installed the acoustic flooring system by Fermacell throughout the first floor.

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Sprinkler installation first fix begun!

May 27, 2015

Sprinkler installation first fix begun!

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Sheeting the upper floor ceiling

May 2, 2015

The upper floor ceiling has now been sheeted…

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Mains water installation completed

May 1, 2015

Mains water installation completed.

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The acoustic ceiling system

April 29, 2015

This week we began the installation of the acoustic ceiling system.

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Preliminary internal drainage / pipework…

April 2, 2015

This week we began the first fix for the internal foul drainage pipe work...

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Below ground drainage completed!

March 30, 2015

Finally the weather has allowed us to now complete our below ground drainage…

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0.1796ach @ 50Pa!

March 13, 2015

After a few false starts due to the wind, today, on Friday the 13th, we finally had our intermediate airtightness test... and the result was a fantastic 0.1796 ac/h!!

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Insulating the roof perimeter

March 8, 2015

This weekend we finished the insulation to the roof perimeter (with a little help from our friends!).

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Fitting the MVHR intake and exhaust & SVP

March 1, 2015

We have now fitted the the MVHR intake and exhaust through the external wall, as well as the soil vent pipe (SVP)...

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Rooflight insulation & airtightness

February 23, 2015

We have also now added some additional insulation around the inside of the rooflight upstands, and taken the airtightness membrane up to the top edge....

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Airtightness at the ground floor perimeter

February 22, 2015

This weekend we completed the airtightness at the ground floor perimeter and the ground floor slab service penetrations...

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More airtightness around the windows and doors

February 20, 2015

We have now more or less completed the airtightness around the doors and windows....

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Getting to all of those awkward places!

January 17, 2015

Lately we have been fixing the membrane to the first floor ceiling and tidying it up at the first floor junction....

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Completion of external wall insulation... finally!

January 9, 2015

This week we also finished the external wall insulation and Spano Durelis boarding in the double height space...

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Intermediate floor airtightness achieved... or so we thought!

January 3, 2015

Today we set about fixing a pesky screw that was sticking through the airtightness membrane above one of the external doors!

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Ventilation first fix begins!

December 1, 2014

Today our ventilation first fix began!

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Making the window reveals airtight...

November 30, 2014

This week we also began the process of making the window and door reveals airtight!

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Preparing for ventilation first fix!

November 29, 2014

This week we had to do some preparation for the ventilation first fix, which is scheduled to start next week.

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Some more insulation around external windows...

November 16, 2014

Since the open day we have now finished completely the external insulation over the window frames.

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Passivhaus Open Day event!

November 9, 2014

This weekend we had lots of interesting visitors to the house as part of the Passivhaus Trust Open Day event.

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Weather proofing under the window cills

November 6, 2014

We have now completed the weather proof layer that goes under our aluminium window cills!

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Busy, busy, busy insulating!

October 16, 2014

This past month has seen a variety of areas of our house build progressing, with a mixture of tasks including more external wall insulation, over-insulating the window frames, and the installing of some glulam post balustrading / support for our stair, which you can read some more about in our last post!

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Glulam posts installed!

October 10, 2014

This week we installed the glulam posts that will form the support for the side of the staircase and the balustrade!

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Sedum installation completed!

September 19, 2014

Today we had a visit from Chris and Richard from Bauder who showed us how to lay our sedum roof covering, and gave us some handy installation tips!

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External wall insulation & airtightness elements started!

August 22, 2014

After a 2 week break from works on site, the last 3 weeks in August have seen us move on to progressing the external wall insulation, and beginning some of the internal racking board...

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External Gutex insulation

July 18, 2014

This week we almost completed the external Gutex insulation, which has several key functions in the construction....

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Insulating the gaps!

July 11, 2014

This week we finished insulating all of the 'gaps' or hard to reach points in the external wall construction prior to the external racking board being fitted. 

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Bauder roofing completed!

July 7, 2014

The Bauder felt roof covering and insulation are now complete, which means that our roof is now waterproof!

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Parapet and roof construction completed and outer frame begins!

June 26, 2014

The last two weeks have certainly been as hectic as the ones before, with really good progress made on site in preparation for the roof waterproofing, which will be starting tomorrow!

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Roof works

June 13, 2014

Over the last 2 weeks works have been progressing well, and we are now well under way with the roof construction! 

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Almost at the roof!

May 30, 2014

Over the last fortnight the upper storey has progressed well, and work finished today at the roof level.

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Things are moving up!

May 15, 2014

The last 2 weeks have seen the timber frame progress up to the first floor level....

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More ground floor timber frame...

May 2, 2014

The second week saw the construction of almost all of the remainder of the single storey external walls (inner leaf), and the majority of the internal walls as well.

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The end of the first week... and we have walls!

April 25, 2014

At the end of the first week we have the beginnings of the east and north elevation external walls in place!

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Sole plates installed

April 23, 2014

The sole plates being installed...

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First timber delivery!

April 22, 2014

Today the first delivery arrived for our timber frame and works began for the next stage on site!

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Finished slab!

March 27, 2014

This morning we went to site to see our finished slab!

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Concrete slab pour

March 26, 2014

Today the concrete slab has been poured! This will form our floor finish and is a key element of the build.

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Ready for the concrete raft!

March 25, 2014

After a speedy few days the team from Construction Form Scotland have got the site ready for the concrete raft foundation!

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The Isoquick insulating formwork is laid

March 15, 2014

This weekend we had 4 of our good friends over to help us lay the Isoquick insulating form work system....

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Finally out of the ground!

March 14, 2014

Today we are officially 'out of the ground'!

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Below ground drainage and ducts installed

March 13, 2014

Today saw the installation of the below ground drainage and some duct runs for other services

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Stone and geotextile membrane going in...

March 10, 2014

After a brief break last week today saw the start of the 'filling' back in of the formation hole....

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Structural Engineer signs off formation

March 6, 2014

Structural Engineer's Visit

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Setting out the formation

March 4, 2014

Today the formation was roughed out and you can start to see the shape of the building in the ground...

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Breaking ground!

March 3, 2014

The big dig has begun on site today!

Progress and decisions...

January 16, 2014

This week should allow us to make some final decisions regarding suppliers and labour for the shell of the house...

First materials purchased!

January 5, 2014

We have been working hard getting our response to warrant points returned to the council and it was certainly an interesting process....

Making the layers work harder....

September 28, 2013

More on the topic of making the layers in the construction work harder....

Airtightness workshop with Ecological Building Systems

September 27, 2013

Yesterday Martin and I spent the day attending the 'Better Building Fabric First' course in Ireland...

An energetic energy based week!

August 23, 2013

This has been another energy based week...

Contamination investigations

August 16, 2013

Trial holes dug for land contamination investigations...

Building Warrant submission & Sustainability Gold

August 15, 2013

The ups and downs of achieving our sustainability goals...

Unilux: an alternative to Gaulhofer windows

July 10, 2013

Further investigations into window options...

Planning Permission Granted!!

July 2, 2013

We have now received planning permission for our passivhaus...

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Overnight stay at a Passivhaus B&B!

June 6, 2013

A week or so ago we visited what we believe to be the UK's only certified Passivhaus B&B for an overnight stay - it was lovely!

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Visit to view Gaulhofer window installation at... Andy Goldsworthy's house!

April 26, 2013

Today we went to visit a Gaulhofer window installation at none other than Andy Goldsworthy's house!

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Percolation tests

April 12, 2013

Trial holes dug for percolation tests...

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Planning submitted for our new passivhaus!

April 11, 2013

At last... After a very busy few weeks we have finally submitted our planning application...

Pre-application consultation.... almost there!

March 22, 2013

We have now had a written response regarding our pre-application consultation...

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Qualified passivhaus designer!

March 11, 2013

I am now officially a Certified European Passive House Designer!

Trial hole

February 24, 2013

Almost ready for the trial holes...

Gaulhofer windows

February 22, 2013

We had a really interesting meeting earlier this week with Robbie from Let's-talk-windows...

A little distraction!

February 14, 2013

Just a little something to do with the water cycle...