Archive for December, 2009 —

Roofing complete. Doors are on.

Upon returning from a two week vacation in Peru and the Galapagos Islands a week ago (which was awesome), I was pleased to see all of the progress that was made in my absence. The roof is all done, the siding is beginning to go up, insulation is in, the drywall is being hung, and best of all, the big metal container that’s been in front of the house partially obscuring the livecam is gone!


The house has four roof surfaces: the south roof, the north roof, the roof deck between those two roofs, and the garage roof. The north roof and the garage roof are standing seam shed roofs in a warm grey tone. The roof deck will be clad with Trex Brasilia espresso synthetic wood decking. I feel pretty good about these three surfaces.

The only roof I’m still not quite feeling is the south roof. It’s almost flat so it wasn’t a good candidate for standing seam metal, so we went with a white single membrane surface. The white doesn’t look great but at least you can only see it from the roof deck. On the bright side, you can easily walk on the roof and it will also be easy to install solar equipment — which I’ve pre-wired for — when the economics make sense. My main concern with this roof is how the edges look from the street. The edges require a noticeably different treatment than the edges on the shed roofs, and I’m just not feeling the gestalt yet. The plan is to edge the south roof with the same Cembonit cement board panels we’re using on the rest of the house. We’ll see how it goes. I’m reserving judgement until the siding is up and I can see how everything meshes together.

My roofing contractor is Nate Dowers Construction and they have done a bang-up job so far.

UPDATE (5/1/2010): We decided to turn the south roof into a matching standing seam metal one after all. It cost us a few thousand dollars more but it looks better and should last longer than the membrane version. Looks great!


There are a few different types of doors in this house:

  • Solid-core interior hinged doors
  • Solid-core interior pocket doors
  • Raumplus glass sliders (for laundry, office, and media rooms)
  • Standard exterior hinged doors
  • Huge, super-awesome front doors

So far, everything except the Raumpluses have been installed. The hopefully interesting details are as follows:

  • We ended up going with the Linnea Pocket door locks and they aren’t as bad as I feared. Quite acceptable really, as far as pocket door interfaces go.
  • For the standard interior doors, we went with Karcher Cyprus handles. They are clean looking and feel good on the palms.
  • For the huge, super-awesome front doors, we went with a double-door made of fir veneer. Veneer is apparently much stronger and more resistant to warping than solid wood so that’s what people usually go with these days. The doors are almost nine feet tall. They feel majestic. We’re waiting until the siding and a few other details are done before picking the exact stain color. Some people might choose aluminum framed glass doors for a house like this, but for some reason, I just feel like a house should have wooden doors. Aluminum with glass feels too much like a retail space to me.
  • For the front door hardware, we’re going with the Omnia Urban which looks sharp and meshes nicely with the NanaWall hardware.

Scope additions and shifts

Several items related to carpentry, installation, and various other areas of labor have been shifted in the budget from subcontractors to Build as they’ve taken tasks on themselves. I’m happy to have team Build tackle this stuff because of the high level of work they’ve exhibited so far. Additionally, we’ve added $4000 to the construction management budget — bringing it to $99,000 — to cover a lot of the extra coordination that is going into this project. I’m happy to increase the construction management fee modestly in this way as I feel I’ve gotten plenty of value for the money.