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The Bothy

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The initial idea was prompted by an enjoyment of staying in Alpine huts and an exhibition of Antarctic exploration which included photographs of bothy buildings. To accomodate a slight incline to the site and to use up some stone I had lying around the garden I decided to build a rock "outcrop" to sit the bothy on. A curved roof, which will eventually be planted with sedum and other alpines, is my homage to Heathrow Terminal 5 which we had the honour to pass through on its opening day. Never, ever again. A veranda for al-fresco eating was thought to be a good idea and a wood burning stove taken from a pre- electrification guards van should provide adequate heat. Comprehensive insulation and weather proofing is an integral part of the design. A home made wind generator should provide electrical energy for the lighting. P>

Other info

Currently the construction is being hampered by inclement weather but hopefully the build will speed up. There is also a problem with a ground bees nest which is where I need to lay a drain from under the foundation wall. They are the Bothy Bees and they are wild. At least they were when I last investigated to see if they had moved on. Bolton Bothy Bees are Buzzing. The corner posts are 100mm x 100mm rough sawn timber. They locate on M12 stainless socket cap head bolts set into the top of four courses of stone footings. The post seats on a 150mm x 150mm plate of soft lead to inhibit water penetration (thank you Walter Segal). The walls are made from 63x38 CSL stud with 6mm WBP plywood cladding. The outer ply is attached as the frame is made and Tyvek membrane is stapled to the outside surface to make it weather proof whilst permitting vapour transmission. Eventually the Tyvek will be covered with rough sawn planking. 60mm of rock wool insulation goes into the gap and then another sheet of 6mm WBP ply goes on the inside. The curved roof beams are made from three layers of 9mm WBP ply laminated together to make a 27mm x 136mm section. Why the cammo tarp? Well, I don't want any nosey so and so at Google Sat to see what I am building and it keeps the rain off. More as the build progresses.

November 2008. Well I was right about the weather if nothing else. It has not been ideal Bothy building weather. The Bothy Bees have buzzed off somewhere else and, quite frankly, I don't blame them. I eventually managed to get the curved roof beams in place and decked with three laminated layers of 6 mm WBP ply wood. Then I had to wait a month for a sufficiently extended dry period to apply two layers of 450 gm chopped strand mat and polyester resin over the deck. I finished the roof off with a grey top coat into which I scattered dry sharp sand, partly to reduce the shine and partly so that I could walk on the roof without ending up sliding into the gutter. It also has the benefit that it looks a bit like reinforced concrete and so will probably mollify those who thought I was going to build a bunker. With the roof on things speeded up. I've layed the veranda decking and planked all except the front wall. I'm leaving this until I have the window frame in place. Most of the electrical first fix is complete so I now have light to work by during the evenings. But I am really looking forward to finishing the roof insulation and installing the stove. Then I may not feel quite so hypothermic when I knock off for the night. More once the window frame and door are completed.

I've installed the door and window frames. As this now leaves a massive hole in the front of the Bothy it might not have been the best idea I've had this year. But it is nice to get the sun inside and I've manged to fit the hearth stone (a slate flag) the stove and flue pipe. So I can have a crackling fire going though, granted, most of the heat escapes through the eaves. Once the roof insulation is in place and all sealed then I suspect it will be very cosy. Fingers crossed. We awoke to about 80 mm of snow this morning so it all looked rather festive in a white mantle sort of way. It has been suggested that I could rent it out to Santa as a refuge - I wonder how well he pays.

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