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PostPosted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 12:21 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 14, 2010 10:12 pm
Posts: 8
Location: Dandenongs for now
Hiya,
we've got acreage in Sth Gippsland and planning to build somewhere on the hilltop to take advantage of the great views.
Meanwhile, we're converting a shed at the bottom of the hill to live in while we figure out where the coldest winds come from and how often etc.
We're going to be off the grid, partly because of the sheer cost of connecting to services (the 'driveway' will be about 650 metres up a slope to surface - it's only a grass cutting atm) and partly because that's what we'd like to do anyway.
The shed will have the first trial of the Nature Loo, before we look at the more permanent designs for the strawbale.
We've got two tanks and some guttering ready to install and the rest should flow from there...fingers crossed!
The shed needs the flooring ripped up to get to the sheep pellets and straw below (great for establishing our temporary veggie patch!) and another floor put in. We've got power to the shed to run the lights existing there and the electric fences.
Anyway, that's it, so far :)


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:05 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2008 5:29 am
Posts: 179
Location: Blue Mountains
How exciting!

Sounds like you have the right idea to me. Spending time testing out all of the benefits and problems of your site before finalising your design should be worth the effort.

I am looking forward to seeing more of your ideas as they progress.

Bluey.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 5:26 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 14, 2010 10:12 pm
Posts: 8
Location: Dandenongs for now
Thanks!
Something I mean to do the next time I'm down on a Saturday is join the South Gippsland Conservation Society - the bookshop looks like it has some great resources and opportunities within the society to talk to people who are doing similar things.
Our strawbale is going to be load bearing and I like the idea of pavillions, like the books suggest, but outdoor walkways in the middle of a cold Sth Gippy winter don't sound appealing at all! Someone with the funds and interest for building into a hillside would have a field day on our property finding a site, but my partner doesn't want to deal with the drainage issues. Not to worry, I'm enthusiastic for strawbale.
I thought I'd be able to leave a lot of this stuff up to my partner, but as with the beef cattle, it is quickly becoming something I'm taking an increasingly active role in :lol: So much for just taking care of the children and horses...as if that weren't enough!
Does anyone know how often the council does a sweep of illegal shed dwellings? We would have had to kit out the shed with some basic facilities, anyway, as it's at the bottom of the property, with the stockyards and the power to use machinery with - it would be nice not to have to trek all the way back up the hill to have lunch or do a quick clean up in a small bathroom, and to have these facilities available in the shed near where the work happens, as well as a bed for kids to have day sleeps when we're working down that end of the farm (it's about 160 acres) ;)


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 7:21 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 12:34 am
Posts: 148
Location: Bega
Liriojaguar wrote:
I like the idea of pavillions, ..... but outdoor walkways in the middle of a cold Sth Gippy winter don't sound appealing at all!


The house we are building has three pavillions and the walkways are exposed to the weather. We designed it like that because we believe that houses should not exist in isolation of the world around them, they should be part of the environment and the environment part of them. Our house (like yours) sits atop a very high hill overlooking a valley, hence the entire front of our house is glass and every room has its own floor to ceiling view of the valley, mountains, weather etc it’s also passive solar and cross flow ventilated for cooling etc and has been built around the contours of the hill to 'fit'. We live surrounded by the environment on our site, massive 180 degree view, we see a lot of sky, all kinds of weather and seasonal changes in the landscape around us so... we wanted to connect with it in a very real way hence you get a little reminder each time you travel from one pavilion to the next. A blast of cold air, warm spring breeze, a few drops of rain, just enough to draw attention back to the environment make us pay attention to her!! It sounds crazy to most people but my wife and I are very outdoors people, we spend a load of time out in the environment and wanted to blur the line between our home and the environment in which it sits. Worth considering :-)

Steve


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 8:17 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 14, 2010 10:12 pm
Posts: 8
Location: Dandenongs for now
Sounds very sympathetic to the environment, indeed! I do like the idea of it very much, and have read a lot about building in pavillions. South Gippsland, though? Not sure, yet. Bega is definitely warmer than the surrounds of Korumburra and Leongatha! And, as I said, we'll get a better feel for it over the next 12 months :) My OH was down there tonight to secure some tanks and it was 7 degrees at 6.30pm. And we have 2young kids and possibly more babies to think about in that weather, depending on what time of year they're born (I'm a homebirther since my second child!).
I haven't ruled out pavillions, so please keep talking ;)


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 2010 10:36 am 
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Joined: Sun Feb 14, 2010 10:12 pm
Posts: 8
Location: Dandenongs for now
Organising a caravan from Wagga (very cheap and from distant relatives - worth the trek and road authority permits!), so that we can live in something sooner rather than later. We'll still do something in the shed, in place of an annexe, but the caravan will have most of what we need.
Still reading heaps on strawbale building and generating lots of ideas to take to a drafts-person.
Also getting a better idea of where to build near the top of the hill. It may have to be a split level affair to make the most of views and fit into the hill nicely whilst keeping out of the wind.


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