Click here for video of a tree falling!

The Cottage Project

This 1920's ERA cottage that is right on Lake Michigan will be undergoing a 'greening' up process. This cottage will have two additions added to it, a basement put under it, and the existing structure made more secure. After all that, we will make the cottage very energy efficient and green by insulating, fine tuning the heating and cooling system, and using the greenest products available, among other things.

Updated 7/18/08

The siding is nearly complete. Notice our custom made brackets holding up the roof, they are new versions of the original brackets.

This is the Lake Michigan side of the cottage. This place has really come back together!

Updated 6/13/08-CertainTeed FiberCement Siding!

Tearing out old kitchen windows.

New kitchen windows

Andersen Windows in new dining room.

Drilling the new well.

Cottage is almost sided!

Updated 06-07-08

Now that the house is getting dried in, we can move to complete this project.

The Andersen Windows are in and the CertainTeed FiberCement siding is being installed.

A view from the beach of Lake Michigan.

I took a walk down to the beach with Jagger the Hybrid Dog so we could both cool off. I turned around and saw how nice the Cottage Project looks from there..

Installing Insulating Panels- Updated 5/19/08

We start with a row of 2" foam. This foam is alternated with the SIPs to avoid any breaches in the insulation.

Placing the SIPs

The technical term for these insulating panels is 'nail based panels'. The panels have OSB on one side only. The purpose of these panels is to provide insulation over the exposed rafters below..

A close up look.

If you look closely, you will see the long screw that is used to secure the panel to the roof. They are screwed into the rafter below.

A view from our office!

It was chilly on the big lake today, but it sure was beautiful!

Almost done.

Updated 5/02/08-More concrete and addition is framed.

Here, Custom Concrete is pouring the footing for the South side addtion.

The roof was tricky to figure out on the north side additon. We got a design together that we all agreed upon and built it in less than a day!

North side addition.

It is criticle to have both floors match with no steps up or down, we acheived this on this addition.

Another look at the Beam. The remaining hole in the foundation will be filled with concrete blocks by our masons.

House movers removing the I-Beam.

This I-beam is 3,000 pounds, and the way they move is much like the Ancient Egyptians. Dietz uses small rollers and can actually roll that big beam by hand!

The basement is poured with the additions on the north and south sides!

The cottage is up! Excavation for the additions has begun.

The Cottage had to be moved over 18" to fit the additions on.

Things are looking up. It is amazing how high this house is!

Updated 4/04/09-Holding up the house!

If you look closely, John is picking the house up!

Seriously thou, isn't this amazing?!!

View from the jobsite! Lake Michigan and icebergs.

Objective #2- Gut upstairs for new rooms, new wiring, and spray foam insulation! Updated 3/18/08

We tore the walls down to bare studs upstairs.

Here John is making the window openning larger for a new Andersen 400 Series Casement Window.

An artifact!

This board reads: Built in 1922, Remodeled in 1950, and now......Green Remodel 2008!

A closer look!

Tearing apart the stairs and getting ready to make new ones.

Openning up the main floor for more space.

The house movers have arrived!

Their first step is to make passage ways for the large beams they use to lift the house.

Home owner and house mover.

I think this picture says it all!

Objective #1- Secure ceiling in living room and install new support beams. Updated 3/08/08

First we remove the old trim boards

This picture shows the beams exposed

Checking the engineer's notes

Removing the ceiling on porch

Back into the living room. Using a jack to lift the ceiling up.

Using a laser level to make sure everything is level

Checking our progress

Support under the house.

Before we jack the ceiling up too far, we had to make sure the floor wouldn't give way.

We took out a 2.25" sag from the living room.

Extra support

Removing the main beam

Beam removed

Making access by cutting out old siding.

Removing beam #2

New yellow beams in place.

Header above window. We snuck it in the wall.

New beams everywhere!

Nailing 3 beams together and then handing them through a window openning.

Meanwhile upstairs.

All the walls were stripped and ready for framing.

A look through the window openning.

A look at the final product. New beams in place.

The Cottage Project- Updated 3/03/08

(before picture)

(before picture)

(before picture)

(before picture)

(before picture)