Wednesday, Session 3, Week 3

Wednesday saw much progress and excitement for the productivity our “early morning” week and extended hours has afforded us.  Though everyone is a little more tired than usual, the quality and quantity of our work has kept the group in high spirits, almost racing to the site each day to get just that much further with our design (and to waste the first 5 minutes on site staring in awe at our cladding.)  Speaking of cladding, the crew, lead by Zane, has been exceptionally diligent making sure each and every piece is designed, cut, and folded properly before being bolted to the furring strips.

Cladding crew discussing window detailing

Cladding crew discussing window detailing

Dan and Arron cutting steel cladding pieces

Dan and Arron cutting steel cladding pieces

Detailing has been a huge driving force in both cabins and cladding is no exception.  Much thought was given to how the metal sheets would come together, giving us some amazing moments on the exterior finish.

Corner steel and bolt detail

Corner steel and bolt detail

Meanwhile, the interior team has been hard at work hanging drywall and finally creating the spaces we have imagined for so long.  In Monument Valley, Ryan took on the task of sheathing both beds, including the lit cubby holes that the interior and electrical teams collaborated on to create what we hope will be some wonderful details.  The ladder to the loft was further developed, channels were utilized to provide a small reveal at the base of the walls, and everybody who had even a few minutes of free time jumped onto the team to help the mudding and taping.  Though we always knew we wanted to pursue trimless window frames, it took several tries and lots of blocking to see that detail come to fruition, however we soon all agreed it was worth the effort.

Cam mudding drywall joints and screw holes

Cam mudding drywall joints and screw holes

Pipsa and Johnny spent much of the afternoon dropping the ceiling in the bathroom of Monument Valley to make the space more comfortable and to make room for the rain shower fixture which Pipsa specified.

Dropped ceiling in Monument Valley

Dropped ceiling in Monument Valley

After slaving away for weeks, Johnny was finally able to see the fruits of his labors as he took of the formwork of the dual kitchen/bathroom sink.  It looks amazing and everybody is very excited to place it in the wall though is probably weighs 600 pounds or so and will take a huge group effort to move without damaging it or ourselves.

Jonny removing the formwork from Blue Mountain's double sink

Jonny removing the formwork from Blue Mountain’s double sink

By the end of the day, Linh and Sam had the entirety of Blue Mountain insulated so drywall can start being installed, Jason had thresholds for the bathrooms fabricated, and Coop had made great headway with the shower mixers, all of which needed customized holders.  All in all, we left site in high spirits and came home to some awesome chili courtesy of Matt and Robin!

 

Kathryn and Becca

Session 3: End of Week 2

Saturday on site was a big working day for the cabins. The insulation blower was fixed and allowed for a much cleaner work site compared to the day before where we manually had to put insulation in the walls. By the end of the day, the blower worked out so well that we were able to complete over 90% insulation on Monument Valley Cabin. In addition to the insulation being blown-in, drywall was screwed to the ceiling to Monument Valley. Plumbing team also made progress, with passing their first of four air pressure test. No leaks makes for a happy student plumber!
On Blue Mountain Cabin, cladding team was preparing the weathered steel sheets. By mid-day, the first sheet went up which was such a pleasure to see! Our exterior vision of the cabins, at that moment, came to life. The treated material and the horizontal layout of the sheets united the Navajo landscape and the Design Build Bluff cabins together in a way that gives respect to the culture and new age of translating architecture.
Kitchen team also poured the complicated design for Blue Mountain sink after 7+ mock-ups.  Johnny, lead of Kitchen team, carefully managed the pour as 4 team members manually hammered the formwork to get rid of air bubbles.  The smallest of this year’s team members proudly put her stature to good use, as she was the only one who could fit under the formwork comfortably to hammer from below.
Last Monday, Sam, Matt, and Cam met with our client, Martha and 2 members of the council to give an update on the design.  A few weeks prior, some of the members mentioned some concern on how close the fire pit was to the wall, so patio team presented some new ideas to relieve their concerns. The conclusion was to go with a propane-fueled fire pit.  Electrical team had presented the lighting fixtures that were going in, and the council expressed excitement for the fixtures and what other designs the DBB team has to offer.
By the end of the work day, smiles and accomplished were upon us all.
The whole group came together to hand insulate the walls after the fiasco

The whole group came together to hand insulate the walls after the set-back.

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Matt & Robin cleaning the blower before cleaning themselves at the end of the day.

Matt & Robin, covered in insulation at the end of the day, setting priorities straight and cleaning the blower instead.

Plumbing test! Psi stayed at 52 after a 30min test.

Plumbing test. PSI stayed at 52 after a 30min test.

Cladding team weathering the steel

Cladding team weathering the steel

 

 

 

- C&C [Coop & Cam]

We love insulating!

We love insulating!

 

 

Session 3 Week 2 END!!!

 

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As assumed there have been some further set backs such as the blower for the insulation breaking and tools just dying on us. Fortunately, Dan and I were able to take the blower back today and have San Juan Building Supply fix the broken switch so we have a blower again!!! Other than that, cladding screws came in so tomorrow we will be attaching the exterior steel cladding, starting to attach drywall and finish insulating the Blue Mountain Cabin. Next week is going to be a long one with extended work hours, but our goals are to have cladding and drywall complete by the end of the session. Arron and Robin got the decking for Blue Mountain Cabin finished and Johnny has made great headway with figuring out and prototyping our concrete sinks and counters; these pours are scheduled for tomorrow morning! Pipsa was excited today to see her beautiful brushed nickel bathroom fixtures come in (and if I may say so, the over head shower head looks awesome!). As much as we have left to do, we feel like it is coming together so fast. Sooner than we know it, we will be handing keys over to Mexican Water Chapter and this chapter of our lives will be complete. Until then, there is still work to do, fixtures to be installed and cladding to be put up.

 

“Always Try, Never Regret”

 

IMG_0636Becca and Pipsa moving aluminum for flashing.IMG_0635Johnny hard at work mocking up the counter tops and sink, Atsushi mixing concrete.IMG_0643 IMG_0642  IMG_0640Matt and Dan blowing in insulation. IMG_0639 IMG_0638Sam loading loose fill fiber insulation into the blower. IMG_0637

 

This week, we have gotten a lot done, solved some problems and come together to make sure we stay on task and keep with our schedule. Even though we have come across some technical problems, we have figured out how to make it work.

 

For now this is Jason J-Bird Patel And Sam Palmer-Dwore The Raptor signing off, have a great weekend!

 

 

Mid-Week Progess and Setbacks

With so much happening at the same time, this session has seemed to go by so fast. This week alone windows and electrical were completed, many of the furring strips went up for exterior cladding, and multiple other details have started.

Our project contains ten windows and one skylight between the two cabins. At last check, that is the most any DesignBuildBluff project has had. Needless to say, the windows bring in a lot of natural light and create great framed views to the exterior, but the quantity also provided a lot of challenges. Custom flashing was needed for all windows that didn’t already have nailing flanges. Also, some of our rough openings were a little too tight for some windows which took quite a bit of time and adjustments to fix. All in all, after the flex flashing, silicone, spray foam, and nails had flown, all the windows are installed and are ready to withstand the harsh Utah climate.

Within the next few days our goal is to complete the blown-in insulation, finish the furring strips, and begin putting up pieces of the weathered steel cladding.

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Zane completing window sealing.

 

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Exterior view of Monument Valley Bunk window.

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Arron completing the patio deck for Blue Mountain.

 

 

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Atsushi cutting windows out with a steel saw. IMG_7590

Blue Mountain bed platform sunrise window.

 

Stay tuned for big changes and the transformation that is to come!

 

-Seth and Zane

First day of Cladding

After a semester of planning, mock-ups,and many trial and errors, our team is excited to finally get started on exterior cladding. While Seth was busy weathering the steel panels, another team started on putting up the furring strips on the exterior walls. As much as our team tried to prepare for the cladding process, we still discovered many details that will need to be re-examined as we proceed. We have realized that our group is interdependent on one another in order to complete our individual tasks. Patio and exterior cladding teams are working hard to coordinate the planned details. Electrical and plumbing teams are coordinating with wall and interior finishes in order to complete their goals by the deadline. It is a critical session for us as exterior cladding and dry walls are expected to be 100% done by the end of the month in order for our project to move forward. As a team, we are both excited and cautious for the days ahead.

pipsa + furring

Pipsa laying out furring strips and establishing a nailing pattern for the metal panels.

 

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Cladding Details

Seth weathering steel

Our weathering master at work.

Johnny mixing concrete

Johnny testing our 4th sample of concrete. He is very protective over it.

cam + patio

Johnny, Cam, Robin and Jason finishing the last patio detail in order for cladding to go up.

MV interior

Monument Valley Interior.

BM interior

Blue Mountain Interior.

Dinner

Greeting from Bluff with love.

- Pipsa & Linh

 

Steady Mid-Week Progress

Today was very productive! The bunk bed and closet in Monument Valley as well as Blue Mountain’s bed platform are coming along quickly and should soon be finished. There are many fun details we are all working on and now that the interior walls are going up, we are starting to get a real sense of space that these cabins provide.

Blue Mountain Bed Platform Assembly

Blue Mountain Bed Platform Assembly

Interior walls in Blue Mountain Cabin being fastened into place.

Interior walls in Blue Mountain Cabin being fastened into place.

Bunk Bed and Closet Assembly in Monument Valley Cabin

Bunk Bed and Closet Assembly in Monument Valley Cabin

Now that the primary structure is in place many of us are branching off into other areas of construction. A few of the doors and windows have now been installed which is a big sense of accomplishment as we get closer to drying in these cabins. Custom metal bending is required for each window so we have been very hard at work crafting each and every piece of metal to fit just right. Doors team has installed front doors on both cabins. Roof team has both cabins 90% waterproofed collectively and looking for full completion this week. The electrical team is making a lot of progress wiring throughout the walls and ceilings of both cabins. Additionally, our client has requested wifi capability for both cabins recently and both roof and electrical teams have made the minor adjustments to accommodate the request.

Installing recessed can housings in Blue Mountain Cabin

Installing recessed can housings in Blue Mountain Cabin

Prepping wiring for an entry light on Blue Mountain Cabin

Prepping wiring for an entry light on Blue Mountain Cabin

Applying silicone sealant to a window in Blue Mountain Cabin

Applying silicone sealant to a window in Blue Mountain Cabin

Fitting Steel Flashing Along A Sill in Blue Mountain Cabin

Fitting Steel Flashing Along A Sill in Blue Mountain Cabin

Installing Steel Flashing on Blue Mountain's Patio

Installing Steel Flashing on Blue Mountain’s Patio

 

Installation of Blue Mountain Cabin's Front Door

Installation of Blue Mountain Cabin’s Front Door

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Bending Steel Flashing for Blue Mountain Patio

Bending Steel Flashing for Blue Mountain Patio

We look forward toward completing our weekly goals and beginning exterior cladding and insulation next week!

Dan & Ryan

Session 3 Day 2

 

Our first window goes in!

Our first window goes in!

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Window team setting in windows

Window team setting in windows

Matt & Jason setting in the first door

Matt & Jason setting in the first door

Hidden egress window built-in

Hidden egress window built-in

Ryan working on the interior walls

Ryan working on the interior walls

Linh, Pipsa, & Sam gluing on the EPDM to the roof

Linh, Pipsa, & Sam gluing on the EPDM to the roof

Plumbing team figuring out layout details

Plumbing team figuring out layout details

Last of the Tyvek on! Patio benches were also framed out on Tuesday

Last of the Tyvek on! Patio benches were also framed out on Tuesday

And best of all, we always get to work on a site with the best views.  On Tuesday, we were welcomed with a rainbow encircling the sun. What can be better than this!

And best of all, we always get to work on a site with the best views. On Tuesday, we were welcomed with a rainbow encircling the sun. What can be better than this!

 

- C&C [Cam & Coop]

Session 3 Day 2… DOORS!!!! and some other stuff

So it’s been a while for me but here’s a little bit of what we have been up to for the past two days, of this our third session! Sam has been great and lead the team to layout and adhere the EPDM on the roof with the assist of his current partner in crime, Ryan, Lihn and Pipsa. Seth, Dan and Zane with the help from what seems like the entire crew have got the windows flashed and started installing our frameless windows. Robin has fabricated what we at bluff have come the call “The Pirate Door”. This is a secondary form of egress in our Monument Valley cabin that will become a hidden door built into the south wall. Matt has rocked it with help from Becca and Johnny and have gotten the electrical laid out and routed through our wonderful structures and as for me… Well I was able to finally install our first door today. With some struggling, the Blue mountain Patio slider door was installed, and thanks to Matt and Johnny the Monument Valley front door is ready to install tomorrow!

Johnny and matt helping nail in the door, and in the background installing windows is zane, dan and Kathryn.

Johnny and matt helping nail in the door, and in the background installing windows is zane, dan and Kathryn.

Return from a break

For the second intermission of the semester, 12 valiant scallywags cruised down Cataract Canyon, one of the most remote stretches of the Colorado River.  It was a nice break from the productive speed of the rough-in session we finished just before the trip.  The adventurers took 5 days of sun and some serious rain on occasion to reach the uppermost reach of Lake Powell after setting off from Moab.  In return for appeasing the river gods, the team was rewarded with some spectacular class IV rapids, and a much-higher-than-usual river flow for this late in the year.DSC_0519 DSC_0520 DSC_0521 DSC_0522 DSC_0529 DSC_0558

Although most of the group wishes we were continuing on down the river, through the Grand Canyon and out the Sea of Cortez, we are hard at it installing windows, doors and the roof EPDM membrane to be fully dried-in.  Soon enough, we will be able to withstand rainstorms inside our own two cabins!

 

Until next time… Sam signing off

Wednesday fun!

Wednesday went by quickly while working on overframing, sheathing and wrapping some Tyvek around Blue Mountain cabin. Everybody was doing their best so that we could begin to put EPDM on the roofs on Thursday as well as start to install some windows.

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Tyvek building wrap being applied

Before noon we all had a flashback to our first session, when everybody gathered to finish off our very last pour; bathrooms and entryways were quickly covered with concrete. Mixing team was doing a great job keeping the mix consistent while others were making sure the forms were filled appropriately. Robin, Coop, Atsushi and Johnny spent the afternoon troweling the surfaces to ensure a smooth finish.

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Robin getting his troweling on

After the pour most of us went to the Chapter house to enjoy a local meal, that we were so lucky to be invited to. Delicious “Navajo tacos” were served with a variety of toppings such as beans, vegetables and meat wrapped in freshly made fry bread. No soul was left hungry.

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Lunch time!

Seth, Becca and Zane stayed home to make some mockups on cladding; the group tried different ways to weather steel with i.e. vinegar and hydrogen peroxide, and many ideas on fasteners were discussed in the night meeting.

 

There’s a lot to do before starting our second week off but hopefully we’ll reach our goal for the session by Saturday night!

 

 

Pipsa & Linh

 mattarron
Arron and Matt getting ready for the day