OT: Seeking Comparison of building costs by type

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On Sun, 21 Aug 2005 07:30:24 -0400, "Thomas Bunetta"

My only suggestion would be to go with the practical side.
I've worked on the interiors of a few log homes (by 3 different manufacturers) and IMHO they are not worth the trouble. All the manufacturers seem to have their own idea for how the logs are sealed where they sit on top of each other and none of those ideas seem to be adequate. Add to that all of places where you have to allow for shrinkage of the logs and whole system is just too much trouble. If you want the house to look like a log home, my suggestion is to side it with t&g siding that looks like logs. Any lumber yard can order it for you. As to your question of cost, if a contractor erects it, a log home will be very close in cost to that of standard frame construction...... no matter what the sales people claim.
Mike O.
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wrote:

Thanks for your input... it kinda adds to my general feelings about the practical issues. I looked at a number of links Edwin provided, and that form of construction holds promise (I'm trading possible hurricanes for possible tornadoes) in both strength and energy efficiency. Thanks again, Tom
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On Sun, 21 Aug 2005 19:09:32 -0400, "Thomas Bunetta"

I live in Kansas and we are seeing quite a few of the poured concrete homes going up here. We even have a company in my home town that manufactures the foam blocks. I haven't had the opportunity to work on one yet but one of our builders is working on a plan for one now. I talked to a heat and air guy who told me that the heating/cooling systems are designed to exchange the inside air at a certain rate (to remove moisture) because the buildings are so tight.
Mike O.
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Mike O. (in snipped-for-privacy@4ax.com) said:
| I live in Kansas and we are seeing quite a few of the poured | concrete homes going up here. We even have a company in my home | town that manufactures the foam blocks. | I haven't had the opportunity to work on one yet but one of our | builders is working on a plan for one now. | I talked to a heat and air guy who told me that the heating/cooling | systems are designed to exchange the inside air at a certain rate | (to remove moisture) because the buildings are so tight.
Interesting. In the early 80's I put up a 24x32 concrete block shop building in southern Minnesota. Only the ceiling was insulated and it had two 6x8 solar panels on the south side. On a typical winter day (wind northwest at 10-20 MPH, temperature -15F) the inside temperature usually exceeded 90F between noon and 1PM.
Encouraged by that success, I started construction of a poured 3-bedroom residence with 11-1/2" thick walls using extruded concrete "bridge planks" for floors and roof. Insulation was sheets of 6" foam with a bonded fiberglass outer skin. The north side was earth-bermed up to the second story windows and the entire south wall was covered with solar heating panels (so as to look like a single gigantic panel).
The intent was to make the building(essentially) tornado-proof and self-heating with a two week "flywheel" reserve. Construction and material costs ran fairly close to $8000/floor for a projected total cost on the close order of 24K.
A divorce mid-project put an end to construction; but the concept is a good one. My reasoning at the time was that I could either pay a bunch of guys to bend nails in green lumber or put the same money into stronger and more durable materials. It's definitely a workable approach.
-- Morris Dovey DeSoto Solar DeSoto, Iowa USA http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/solar.html
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Around here developers are building starter mansions all over the place . The first thing they do is tear down perfectly good ranch houses just for the land they sit on . A few of these houses are blocked up and towed to new sites .Basically all you are paying for is the land, a new foundation and the towing charges ..seems a fairly economical way to go to me ......
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Contour Packaging? Whose block is it? I know they do Integraspec.
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wrote:

The company making blocks here is Ruud Building Systems. From what I can tell they manufacture the Logix system blocks. Not so coincidentally the same guy owns a local concrete company.
Mike O.
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"Thomas Bunetta" wrote in message

A commercial building calculator that will get you very close per your geographic location:
http://costest.construction.com/cest/register.asp
The sign-up is benign and will be well worth your time ... and yes, I've personally used this particular calculator as the _starting point_ for small commercial bid estimates in the past. Bookmark it well ... it is hard as hell to find from scratch.
--
www.e-woodshop.net
Last update: 8/07/05
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<snip>

I logged in, but will wait for SWMBO to decide the particulars, like Sq. footage, etc. before I complete the estimate (said by one well aware of which side the butter is on!). Tom
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"Thomas Bunetta" wrote in message

To do my residential estimates and budgets I use a suite of tools based on Excel macros called "UDA Construction Office".
www.constructioncontracts.com/
It would be a bit steep in price unless you are planning on doing the general contracting yourself, then it would be well worth the few hundred dollars as an estimating tool, a budget tool and a bidding/contracts tool.
It is a relatively painless matter of inputting a few parameters and it spits out a fairly comprehensive estimate for "industry standard" residential construction, from soup to nuts. If you get to the point where you have your parameters down fairly well, it is within the realm of possibility that, on a quite evening, the input could be done via e-mail and the results e-mailed to you.
--
www.e-woodshop.net
Last update: 8/07/05
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Thomas,
If you would like to capitalize on your own labor, I would suggest finding a house plan you like from the thousands available in the library or on-line. Then have an archiect or designer provide a set of drawings that reflect that plan and detailed to utilize one of the two following methods of construction.
1. Check out the Portland Cement Assoc. publication on insulating concrete block, an autoclaved cement product that is lightweight and workable with traditional carpentry tools. An excellent article was published several years ago in Fine Homebuilding Magazine, worth looking up. This would also be an excellent material for a shop.
2. Set the drawings up for pre-fabrication of floor, wall and roof panels. Your labor would be to build the panels. keep the sizes manageable and spend the time in building them ahead of the construction. When the time comes let a carpentry company erect them for you and finish off as much as you want.
Hope these options give you more to research. Best of luck.
Deacon
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More to consider... I'll look up the info on the insulating concrete block. Time won't allow the labor for pre fab panels (by me). Thanks, Tom
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