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PostPosted: Wed Feb 26, 2020 1:38 am 
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Location: Hastings, East Sussex, United Kingdom
Over the last couple of weeks I have finally started to build my studio! (design thread here:http://johnlsayers.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=21921 ) Beginning with mundanities such as removing rawlplugs, screws, nails and other fixings from the brickwork / woodwork while marking where I need to back fill with mortar, I moved on to stripping out the old wiring and neon lighting.
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NWwall1.jpg

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SEwall1.jpg

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Power_dist1.jpg

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Old wiring 1.jpg

A temporary power supply was rigged up by an electrician, so now there's nothing preventing me sealing the existing walls. I commissioned a steel flitch plate to reinforce the existing beam and the work was carried out by a local fabricator (to an excellent standard I might add - it was engineered to millimetre accuracy).
Attachment:
Flitch Plate 4.jpg

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Flitch Plate 1.jpg

Before it could be fitted the supporting ‘pier’ needed attention because it wasn’t quite as tall as the one at the opposite end of the room . When the beam was originally installed it was levelled by packing the gap with blocks of wood(!!).
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SW pier_before3.jpg

So props were placed under the beam and the packing removed, meanwhile engineering blocks were cut to size and cemented in place.
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Props2.jpg

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pier repair.jpg

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block4.jpg

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pier3.jpg

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Pier4.jpg

By tomorrow the mortar should be firm enough to take the last prop away and that’ll be the main structural reinforcement done!
Attachment:
Flitch_complete.jpg


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 26, 2020 9:17 am 
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Very very exciting!!!! I can't wait to see more progress.

Greg

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2020 3:28 am 
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So, full of newly restored enthusiasm, I set about sealing the outer leaf walls. To do this, I intended to fill the numerous drill holes in the brickwork and then apply two thick coats of masonry paint.
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Holes6.jpg

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Holes.jpg

The filling part was easy enough and I left the mortar harden overnight.
One of the mistakes I made in planning this build (it's a rapidly increasing list) was assuming that because the garage is built in to the earth at one side, this was a good thing. It has to be, doesn't it? WRONG!!!!!! For months now in SE England it has been raining non-stop, almost with no let up. Overnight it was particularly bad, really knocking down to the point that the ground surrounding my house is completely saturated (there is standing water on the lawn). Inevitably, rain water has found it's way into the garage. The chalk line in the photos indicates roughly where the ground level is on the outside of the wall.
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Ground_Level1.jpg

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Ground_Level6.jpg

It seems to be coming up from the ground between the slab and the bottom of the wall on the side that is below ground level, not soaking through the brickwork but this is a major problem. It will take weeks for the walls to dry out (assuming it stops raining soon which is a big 'if') and I have to work out what to do in order to stop it happening again. Could the building be partially tanked? If anyone has any helpful suggestions, I'd love to hear them!


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2020 4:38 am 
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Brutal, and if you've read my design thread, you know that I personally feel your pain as I have had moisture problems myself.

It a LOT of work to implement, but I would suggest looking into installing weeping tile.

There is no point in building more until you sort out that issue.

Greg

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2020 4:48 am 
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Thanks Greg - that's very helpful. I know that you have had some monumental problems with your build to say the least!!

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2020 12:04 pm 
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That is a particularily tough position. It is promising that the brick are not wicking that typically means the exterior was sealed well. And for below elevation construction this is required. The breech in the structure at the base of the bricks is the "path of least restriction".

Fixing a water issue on the inside of the structure is never suggested, in any city in any country. It was mentioned as a fix weeping tile, what I refer to as a "french drain" is the solution to your issue.

But it comes at a cost and cannot be ignored but is the only way at this point to correct this leaking.

There may be some new types of interior leak extraction available like a sump pump, which still requires modification but is less intrusive.

Good luck my friend.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2020 2:02 am 
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Thanks for your advice Brien - it is much appreciated. A local drainage contractor assessed the problem two days ago and said almost exactly the same thing. He advised building a French drain and adding a sump pump which would drive excess water through a bore and into the nearby drain. I'll have to wait several months for the ground to dry out sufficiently to dig the trench. In the meantime I'm re-ordering my plan of works so at least I can be achieving something.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2020 6:05 am 
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:D

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PostPosted: Sun May 24, 2020 9:09 pm 
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Hello again one & all,
I hope you are all staying well and managing to maintain relative sanity! The recent re-availability of building materials has allowed me to make some modest progress on my build this week but before I get on to that, I think it’s worth mentioning something that might be useful if you’re about to start your own build - specifically that you can save a substantial amount of money by bulk ordering materials for delivery instead of relying on more local suppliers.
I set up several trade accounts with nearby timber and building yards and while it’s true that they beat retail prices by a good margin (10 - 15%), 10 minutes of internet research revealed bulk delivery sources that saved me £4 a sheet on OSB3, nearly £5 per sheet of MDF and over £6 per sheet of cement fibre board on ‘trade’ prices. The minimum order was £500 for the timber and £250 for the cement board, but given the quantity of materials needed to build even a small studio, it’s a threshold that’s easily crossed.
Attachment:
Fork_lift.jpg

The first job I tackled was to tank the garage and I’m extremely grateful to ‘Purelythemusic’ (AKA Tom) for his steer on this. I applied a coat of Construction Chemicals tanking slurry (as far as I can tell it’s a mixture of cement and glass fibres) up to one metre above ground level (said to be the limit of capillary rise in brick walls). Then added a wedge of mortar (or ‘fillet’) around the perimeter of the room where the slab meets the wall. When the mortar had hardened sufficiently, I painted on a second coat and left it to cure (the manufacturer recommends a full week). Not my tidiest work, I confess but at least it will be hidden!
Attachment:
Tanking_4 copy.jpeg
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Tanking_5 copy.jpeg
Meanwhile I raised the two joists nearest the gables to make room for the inner leaf silencers, moved another one other to create more space between the rafters and pinned the others with M12 bolts. The raised joists will be reinforced (or ‘collared’) before any increased load is placed on them.
Attachment:
joist_5.jpg
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Joists_2 copy.jpg
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Bolt_2.jpg
Then I started to make a framework from softwood batten inside the gable timbers which is set in 30mm from the edge. I’m going to attach the Cement board and OSB3 cladding to this (after caulking it of course).
Attachment:
Frame_9.jpg
I originally intended to pin the boards directly to the gable but doing it this way will increase the inter-leaf cavity by the thickness of the cladding. Thanks for reading - more photos at ‘johnsteel.org’. Best wishes, John.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:08 pm 
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An update to my build thread is long over due but while I write up the progress I've made over the summer I'd like to ask a quick question to learned members of the JS forum. I'm currently building my silencers to a design based on Greg's silencer box and formed of two layers of 18mm MDF (this will make the boxes as dense as the leaves they're attached to). My question is: would there be any benefit in using green glue between the inner and outer layers of MDF? My instinct is that it can't hurt but I have a nagging feeling that I may be missing something. Has anyone tried this or have thoughts on it?
Best wishes, John.[img]
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IS_Mark_5%20copy.jpg
[/img][img]
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IS_build_3%20copy.jpg
[/img]


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 8:32 pm 
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Location: Wales, UK
John Steel wrote:
An update to my build thread is long over due but while I write up the progress I've made over the summer I'd like to ask a quick question to learned members of the JS forum. I'm currently building my silencers to a design based on Greg's silencer box and formed of two layers of 18mm MDF (this will make the boxes as dense as the leaves they're attached to). My question is: would there be any benefit in using green glue between the inner and outer layers of MDF? My instinct is that it can't hurt but I have a nagging feeling that I may be missing something. Has anyone tried this or have thoughts on it?
Best wishes, John.[img]
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IS_Mark_5%20copy.jpg
[/img][img]
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IS_build_3%20copy.jpg
[/img]


Hey John,

Looking good! Do your wall/ceiling panels have green glue between them? I can’t see any problem using green glue in your silencer boxes, not sure how much difference it will make but if you have some spare then why not?

Paul

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 9:45 pm 
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Hi Paul,
Thanks for your comments - much appreciated. I'm using green glue between the layers of the outer leaf cladding and I intend to use it in the inner leaf construction too. I spend so much time thinking about the many & various aspects of this build that I sometimes can't see the wood for the trees, so it's great to have independent input. How's your project going?

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 04, 2020 11:15 pm 
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John Steel wrote:
Hi Paul,
Thanks for your comments - much appreciated. I'm using green glue between the layers of the outer leaf cladding and I intend to use it in the inner leaf construction too. I spend so much time thinking about the many & various aspects of this build that I sometimes can't see the wood for the trees, so it's great to have independent input. How's your project going?


It's going okay - I keep redesigning everything in SU, trying to come up with the best compromise for each aspect of the design, it's tiring - the trouble is I keep learning more and more, so each time I learn something new I realise I have to change something! There's already a tonne of things I wish I had built differently with the knowledge I have now, but, that's always the case with DIY studio design. in fact, even the very best have had to go through this process - it took Tom Hidley a few hundred studios before he finally realised there was a much better way.

Can't wait to see more progress on your build, you're doing quality work.

Paul

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2020 8:02 am 
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Thanks Paul - I have just searched 'Tom Hidley '. What a story!

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 01, 2020 2:56 am 
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It’s been a fair while since I updated my build diary, so here’s what I did this Summer. I continued framing between the rafters up to the level of the joists on the N.W. & S.E. facing walls. This was trickier than the gables because the framing has to be contoured to the same angle as the rafters.
Attachment:
Contoured_Framing6.jpeg

The next step was to begin cladding the framework, first with 12.5mm cement board then a layer of 18mm OSB. I was careful to thoroughly caulk all the seams of the frame and after the sealant cured I fixed the individually cut panels to the frame using star drive screws.
Attachment:
IMG_0906 copy.jpg

I fixed the OSB panels to the rafters after applying green glue to the side that will be in contact with the cement board. I don’t have pictures of the green glue being applied as I was concentrating too hard on the task to remember to take any. I have a few more panels to fit and I’ll try to capture this when I do.
Attachment:
OSB4 copy.jpg

I added ‘collars’ to the raised joists so they’ll be reinforced and rigid enough to support the outer leaf silencers and supporting framework.
Attachment:
Collar1 copy.jpg

With the help of Kate (spouse, musical collaborator, song-writer and percussionist of the first order) I applied two thick coats of masonry paint to the brick walls and piers in order to seal them.
Attachment:
Paint1 copy.jpg

The next step was to make the outer leaf silencers as they needed to be raised onto the joists before the middle leaf decking is fitted (I have actually installed two short runs of decking already, one at either end of the room, forming a platform on which the silencers can rest while I build the framing to hold them). I made them out of two layers of 18mm MDF incorporating 3 x 180 degree turns.
Attachment:
IS_Mark_6 copy.jpg

As I cut the pieces, I clamped them together to make sure they were going to fit (I’ve heard this referred to as ‘dry fitting’). I learned very quickly that it’s incredibly easy to over-work and damage MDF so I was careful to pre-drill and countersink the inner layer of the box.
Attachment:
Silencer_1011 copy.jpg

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Silencer_1021 copy.jpg

As well as (gingerly) using 30mm screws I used a thin bead of wood glue along the joining edges.
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Silencer_1069 copy.jpg

Then I added a bead of caulk along the inner and outer seams.
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SILENCERc_1098 copy.jpg

By this stage, they were beginning to get fairly heavy (even without the extra layer of boards which would eventually more than double the weight) so I decided to take the opportunity of adding the foam lining while they were still relatively easy to move around. I used a class ‘O’ acoustic foam, supplied in 25mm thick sheets with an adhesive backing. It’s important to use this type of product as it’s mould resistant, fire resistant as well as being acoustically rated (even though it’s eye-wateringly expensive) and given that, once the boxes are sealed up, air tight, there will be no chance of modifying them, it doesn’t make any sense to use inferior materials.
Attachment:
SilencerL_1109 copy.jpg

I discovered that the adhesive backing wasn’t quite as sticky as I’d hoped and overnight, where it had been shaped around the baffles, it had begun to separate.
Attachment:
SilencerBF_1079 copy.jpg

The solution I found was to buy some 52mm plastic washers to hold the foam in place where it was being deflected. They’re actually surveyor’s markers but are perfect for this application as they have beveled edges and while they will add a small amount of drag to the airflow it will help avoid the foam completely springing loose when the glue completely dries out.
Attachment:
SilencerLW_1116 copy.jpg

When the silencers were completed they weighed 64 kilograms each, so the next challenge was to raise them up to the middle leaf decking ( a three metre lift). For this I used an inexpensive (£10) cable pulley set along with three locking carabiners, two load straps and an old security chain. All of these components have a load capacity of at least 200 kilograms.
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Hoist_1141 copy.jpg

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Hoist_1146 copy.jpg

The nylon rope supplied with the pulley set looked very flimsy and as if it would untwist very rapidly under the load so I replaced it with marine grade, double braided rope. The lift was pretty straightforward and the finished boxes are on the decking, sealed to keep out insects, dust and other unwelcome guests (apologies for the poor picture quality – it was the end of a long day).
Attachment:
Hoist_1151 copy.jpg

The next part of the build is making the frame for the silencers – more to follow and thanks for reading. More details and pictures at johnsteel.org


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