We are looking for a suitable registered experienced builder for our planned off grid passive home to be built near Margate, Tas.
We need someone who is honest, reliable, good at communicating and listening and pays attention to detail.
The house will be well insulated, wrapped and sealed and we plan to have it pressure tested once the wraps are on.
It will be single storey on an insulated cement slab, colourbond roof, a mix of stone and vertical timber cladding and at least double glazed windows.
We have a stonemason lined up for the stonework.
The site is relatively flat and has good access.
This build is a little way off as we are only just about to submit the DA.
Feel free to post or private message recommendations.
Looking for the perfect builder in Southern Tas(11 posts) (5 voices)
We are looking for a suitable registered experienced builder for our planned off grid passive home to be built near Margate, Tas.Posted Friday 17 Feb 2017 @ 12:40:40 pm from IP #
If there is a Major Domestic Building Contract involved, get the fan door test put in as a special condition. Make sure you include the expected rating as a performance target.
You might also contact the PassiveHaus people for members in the area given your performance target.
Or you could try accredited Green Builder members of the Master Builders Association or HIA in Tasmania.Posted Sunday 19 Feb 2017 @ 3:28:55 am from IP #
Keen to know how you go Audrey, as we are in the process of buying in the Huon Valley ourselves and will need a builder too.Posted Saturday 15 Apr 2017 @ 12:57:58 pm from IP #
Good luck with finding the perfect builder.
Get on to a Germany journeyman, get him (or them) out here on a 475 visa or whatever it's called and then you have a chance.
Or do it yourself.
Last login heard there was some people up Jackys Marsh way (near Meander via Delorane) that did quality alternative building work. I've built a stone house and a log cabin with a green roof and am warm and cosy in the coldest of winter.Posted Friday 21 Apr 2017 @ 5:18:41 pm from IP #
oohh keen to do an earth covered house Thunda, did you do it all yourself and did you have a concrete roof?Posted Saturday 22 Apr 2017 @ 3:07:10 am from IP #
Concrete roof? Why?
It's not needed, all timber mostly macracarpa, second only to Huon pine.Posted Saturday 22 Apr 2017 @ 3:43:41 am from IP #
You'll find it hard to find an earthen home builder in Tas, like me they've all retired and the young ones are all into crap chemical materials.
Disagree regarding the macrocarpa, it rots away very easily when subject to moisture in the earth. The best form of roof if you are going to cover it in earth, is 17mm construction ply covered with 2-3 layers of construction plastic and 1-1.5m of earth cover. For weight bearing framing, steel veneered with whatever timber you like. Walls, 1-1.5m rammed earth then externally sealed again, with whatever you find best. My rammed earth walls have bluestone facings outside and various types of rock internally. Internal walls are all rammed earth and have a variety of cladding over them.
When designing your earthen home, make sure you can collect the water from the roof area. To do that, you need to start with clay on the plastic, then screenings and finally the earth. Water will run through the rocks and can be collected at different points. On mine, those points are above doors and windows and the roof is inclined so water collects that way. You end up with really clean water and done right, it never see daylight and stay clean and filtered.Posted Saturday 22 Apr 2017 @ 5:03:44 am from IP #
Well Dax you missed it completely.
We were not talking about earth homes, but living roofs.
Some people refer to them as earth roofing or green roof.
As far as macracarpa goes seems like your only guessing, the sap wood rots away fast but the heart wood lasts for more years than you will.
I'm seventy and have fences that have been in the ground since l was a lad.
Macracarpa is great for building boats and ships, and brown pine for yards and spars.
I also have cattle yards here that have served well for fifty years, it's out lasted box gum by twenty years.
My cabin should last around 150 years at least.
The green roof is over fiberglass any plastic, with frames mode of macracapa constantly damp and after five years still perfect.Posted Saturday 22 Apr 2017 @ 7:16:35 am from IP #
Nat vegan green was asking about earth covered homes and that's who I was addressing my post to. As a master builder of over 50 years, including boat renovation and repair, have seen macrocarpa in action and have done many long term testing of various Tas timbers to find what was best for differing jobs.
Macrocarpo timber is cheap, it looks nice but is very fragile and lacks the strength needed for construction and furniture. If it were second to Huon pine, it would be in great demand, but it mostly ends up on the scrap pile unsold. Decent strong timber treated properly, lasts a very long time and any timber subject to moisture contact and in touch with air, will deteriorate, even huon pine.
A proper earthen roof of at least 1m is an ecosystem and done properly can provide many benefits for the home owner, including growing foods on it. Timber and other materials subject to the environment will suffer, especially in fire or storm tempest. When you consider the unpredictable era we are entering, sensible people will build homes that will survive and sustain them during fire and climate storms. Matchbox homes are death traps, especially softwood homes which burn rapidly and collapse under the weight of climate storms.
The recent Dunnelly fire storm is a good example of what and what didn't survive and the reasons behind there outcomes. Living in the area, experienced the event from my earthen home. Whilst most others burnt to the ground, no matter what or how they were built. When a fire front travels at 1klm a minute, with temps that bend steel girders, unless you have a natural barrier between the fire front and house, like earth mounds, fire resistant shrubs and trees anything above ground will perish. As will all those well protected, that get dumped on by a fire ball and that happened at Dunnelly at a number of places sadly.
My earthen home, which sits under 1-1.5m of soil, maintained it's 25deg temp during the entire event. When the fire front hit, it went straight over the top, as it did when it hit another earthen home we built near Murdunna.
Anyone building in rural areas, in this day and age should deeply consider the coming future and how susceptible Aus is to devastating fire and weather events. Particularly as we are undergoing climate change which is bringing with it even more extreme weather and fire events. An earthen covered home 100m above sea level, is what the young should be looking at and not chemically saturated flammable matchboxes.
By the way, one of my retired hobbies is furniture making and work with every Tas timber there is. Been making timber and metal furniture for decades since making all the furniture in my first earthen home, then some for others.
Other than huon and celery top, blackwood, green wattle and white gum give the best results. Inlays of wild cherry, silver wattle maker for some wonderful effects. My dining room set is a 3inch thick jarrah topped table, on Tas white gum legs and blackwood sides. Chairs are blackwood with wild cherry and tea tree inlays.Posted Saturday 22 Apr 2017 @ 8:35:26 am from IP #
Then how do you explain how my fence posts and cattle yards have lasted so long?
If your keen on boat building and renovation you would have seen the macracarpa pirate boat built in S.A. at the wooden boat festival.
Why would anyone go to that much trouble and expense if it was no good.
The demand for macracarpa is on the increase, especially for fence pailings, chainsaw carving force the George town council, Ross, and other councils by Eddie the chainsaw sculpture.Posted Sunday 23 Apr 2017 @ 8:40:00 pm from IP #
No idea, but macrocarpa has a structural outside life of about 15 years, in the ground with added moisture, it fails. That's why I prefer to use other Tas native timbers, rather than imported exotics. If you get long life out of it, good for you and it is cheap, about 1/3 the price of cedar and other imports.
I'm talking about timber for earthen homes, so you need really long life strong and tensile timbers and macrocarpa being a cypress, fails for that scenario.Posted Monday 24 Apr 2017 @ 4:55:18 am from IP #
You must log in to post.