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angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Seems like burrowing with water for a ground rod would defeat the purpose - you'd end up with poor soil contract because of the large hole you've made flushing out the mud.

I have seen that trick used to dig under a sidewalk, works real well.

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angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Right, but the undisturbed soil is what gives good contact with the ground rod.

In utility work, when attempting to drive rods in very rocky earth, sometimes they must drill, or drive into poor soil and make a hole sort of like how you describe. And then they have this stuff they mix and pour down that is basically very conductive mortar.

Even if you completely filled and tamped a hole before you drove a rod into it, it wouldn't have as good of resistance as driving into undisturbed soil.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



So they aren't going to put any kind of wall cover or moisture barrier or anything on that exterior wall??? Just a brick veneer over the stud walls?

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



On the plus side, we've got something interesting to talk about?

But seriously that sucks. The whole project is kind of overwhelming even as a spectator. You'll get there though, like eating a whale. One bite at a time!

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Could you take a few samples with a drill bit, see what the core of the beam looks like, or at least how soft it is?

I lean towards leaving it, if you can verify that it's sound.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Just coat the sill in epoxy, it'll be like an engineered beam.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



You know more about construction than me, but it seems like that beam is wrapped such that if condensation forms it will have a hard time evaporating?

I remember an episode of This Old House where Tom Silva talked about how old houses had walls that could breathe - and some new construction houses, with layers of vapor barrier on both sides could not and he wondered about condensation and decay because of it.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



I've been involved in a couple auto transfer setups in my commercial electrician days, and seen quite a few since, as well as a solar array interconnected to utility power, but I've not personally seen anybody switch the neutral.

Since this disconnect is to be installed after the meter can, the neutral and ground should be separate at this point, which would require a 4 pole switch to be NEC compliant, and accomplish what you are intending I think.

angryrobots fucked around with this message at 02:15 on Nov 12, 2014

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



kastein posted:

first paragraph - cool! Some power companies want to see a switched neutral in residential work with an ATS involved. I can understand why, if your premise wiring is hinky as gently caress (which can basically be guaranteed on anything more than 10 years old with at least one JAFHO involved) there's no guarantee that your goofy wiring and generator might not backfeed a couple dozen volts onto the neutral and fry their poor lineman, so I'm interested in switching my neutral even though my local company really doesn't care.

second - sorta, IIRC. My plan was to bond neutral and ground at the disconnect, and have every neutral be connected together (but not to ground) downstream of that. Since the transfer switch doesn't switch neutral, my neutral wiring would be bonded to ground at the disconnect still. I assumed neutral-ground bonding at the load side of the disconnect switch, which may or may not be accurate/to code now that I think about it, and this may throw a wrench in my plans, so thanks for bringing that up.

third - are you talking 3 phase or splitphase residential? I thought grounds were NEVER switched, which with splitphase 240V residential would leave me with 3 poles (hot, hot, neutral) switched and ground contiguous, which I believe is how I should do it.

Clear as mud? I can put together a wiring diagram tomorrow if not.

Splitphase, residential service.

In the meter can, neutral and ground are connected, same bus. So if ground is continuous and unswitched at the disconnect, if you bond anywhere else, including at the generator which I believe is necessary with a switched source utility neutral, then your house/generator neutral is still connected to utility neutral regardless.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Well, keep in mind the intent of the grounded/grounding NEC rules - you want fault current on ground to have the best and shortest route to the source, enabling the fastest and most reliable operation of the circuit protection device.

I would not suggest being bonded beyond the meterbase, for reasons of creating a convoluted path to the utility neutral for fault current during normal operation.

Here's my thing - say worst case the generator is completely miswired or fails internally or whatever. Any 'voltage' that finds its way onto the neutral won't have any potential relative to anything past the bonding point. The 240v conductors are open at two points in your case (ats and external disconnect), and the neutral is bonded to ground everywhere on the utility side. Where can there be a potential difference on the utility to cause any harm? And I say this as a power lineman.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Yeah I think we're on the same page.

I'm envious of the stuff you get done daily, but I suppose you don't have a 1 y.o. and 6 y.o. sapping all of your life force. I used to get stuff done after work....

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



kastein posted:

Service disconnect wiring: (supply from lower right, load to upper left. Since it is now pretty unequivocal where my service disconnecting means is, everyone should be happy to see the neutral bond here. I placed it on the load side.
Couple things. Again I'll mention that the utility neutral, load neutral, ground, and ground rod are all on the same bus inside the meter can. So unless you also switch the ground, you are still connected to utility neutral even when the disconnect is open.

Secondly, when I'm looking at the disconnect switch there, the line side is fed from the meter can? If so, you are switching utility current.... From what I've seen I would not want any device operating unprotected utility current inside my house. The amount of fault current for the utility protection to kick in is astonishing.

I would strongly suggest, when you upgrade to a 200a service, change out the meter can to a combination unit with an integrated 200a breaker. The 240v buses come straight out of the meter and into the breaker, absolutely limiting the utility fault current and keeping it out of your house.

Edit: here's a couple examples of what I'm talking about. You don't want this kind of potential in your basement, nevermind the cost to replace the equipment if that's all.



angryrobots fucked around with this message at 04:51 on Dec 10, 2014

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



kastein posted:

They are? I thought the neutral was isolated there, since the code says to ground bond at either the weatherhead (hell no), the meter can, or the service disconnect - one and only one of the above. Since 95% of the time this means people put the bonding screw into the isolated neutral bar in the main panel (which is their service disconnect) I was under the impression that it was at least possible to get a meter base with the neutral bus not bonded to ground as otherwise most installations would be ground bonding in two locations, thus breaking NEC.
Yeah, they have to be. Utility power only has 3 conductors coming in anyway (hot-hot-neutral), so if you isolated the neutral there, the ground wire from your house would be dead ended in the meterbase, with a convoluted path for fault current to the bonding point.

In fact up until a few years ago, they commonly ran 3 conductor cable from the meter can to the main panel. My house is this way.

Mike Holt has a couple pictograms for you:



angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Well and keep in mind that anything I think could be preempted by your local codes and inspector. But they can be sticklers for the NEC as they interpret it, while at the same time demanding something illogical.

For example, for a long time electricians would have a short ground rod just stapled to the pole, when installing a temp service pole for us to hook up by the road. It's temporary, we had no issue with it. Then the local inspector demanded they install a full 8' rod because the NEC says so. Well, they don't call for locates before installing this temp pole and rod, and of course the inevitable happens and this electrician drives a copper clad ground rod straight through our 2" pipe carrying an energized 1/0 7200v cable. Fortunately the fault protection did its job and he had no idea that he just knocked out power to half the subdivision.

I like the idea of installing the generator as a separately derived system, because ground fault current will always be traveling towards the source in either case.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



.... April fools?

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Dang, so when it's all said and done, you're gonna sell it off?

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Is that going to be your only/main source if heat? Sorry if that's a stupid question, I'm from The South where we heat with forced air.

Anyhow, if that's 10k all in on heating the whole place efficiently, I'd say it's not that bad. I know it hurts but "done right" is worth it.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Crotch Fruit posted:

Have you taken into account the slope of your floors for optimum water circulation patterns? :colbert:

You're horrible haha

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



I've got a sign made up that says "free scrap metal", and I just put metal and whatever else that may not be completely trash by the road.

I've easily gotten rid of 20 truck loads of crap that way. But that's an option when you live in the country and 80% of the traffic is pickups driven by persons who cannot control their urges when they see "free".

Reuse, recycle, right?

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Goddammit, next you'll be hanging curtains.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Radiant heating is new to me.

What does the newest plan mean for the high temp zone? It has perpetual limited output, at the benefit of maximum efficiency?

Edit: or you're saying you will completely eliminate it? The line about "if I do not need the baseboard zone to keep up" has me wondering. Sorry to interrupt your thoughtstream.

angryrobots fucked around with this message at 04:05 on Oct 3, 2016

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



kastein posted:

You can tell where the roof is not insulated yet because it is in a closet and I am doing all the closets and the upstairs hall together later:

You mean where the snow is sitting? I would have thought that snow would sit where the roof/attic WAS insulated well, and melt where it wasn't.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Gotcha. And the snowpatch is the big area of blown-in you just did?

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



How about a high velocity hvac system? I see they install them frequently on This Old House, especially in retrofits where duct space is at a premium.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Er...the air handler in the garage is sucking return air from the garage? That's definitely not a good idea, especially if it's actually used as a car garage. The room should be sealed from the rest of the house, not potentially ducting carbon monoxide.

E: unless this system is only for the garage area and does not tie into living space.

angryrobots fucked around with this message at 18:35 on May 4, 2017

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Yeah, you're right, that's it I'm sure. I read closet air handler and projected how I often see them installed, drawing air through a grill in the door.

Although to be fair, as leaky as the return duct to air handler connection often is, it's not the best location for it. Something to be mindful of at least.

angryrobots fucked around with this message at 22:37 on May 4, 2017

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Motronic posted:

(http://www.lg-dfs.com/art-cool-single-zone.aspx Will be a multi zone, but tell me that's not bad rear end as far as kinda hiding a mini split cassette)
Yeah that art gallery picture deal is pretty drat cool. Eventually I've got to remodel the ~450 ft² apartment in my shop. Was leaning towards a "window unit" type since it's framed for one already (discovered when doing demo), but that picture deal would be a hell of a lot more attractive.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



That is a very attractive bay window.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Darchangel posted:

One of the first things I did after I bought my house was put in attic stairs. Built in 1964, bought in 2000, and no one had put in stairs in all that time. There was one little (I mean tiny) hatch in the garage, where the roof was lower, and difficult to get to the rest of the space, so I put a set in the hall.
At some point I should gasket the hatch and/or build a Styrofoam insulation box (for summer heat in my case). Also decked the attic area immediately around the stairs. Probably should at leas deck a path to the air handler manifold. It's a pain getting over/under the ducts while struggling not to step through the ceiling.

Also need to re-insulate the rigid ducts, but gooooooood I don't want to do that.

I have one of these

Owens-Corning 541799 R-10 Attic Stairway Insulator, for Openings Up To 24.5 by 54-Inch https://www.amazon.com/dp/B002SYP8SA/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_e28zAbGFD736E

And I like it better than the zippered ones, because it moves completely out of the way if you have attic storage. It may not be "sealed" because the bottom of the tent is just sitting, but it seems to make a big difference. Installation is simply setting it in place which can't get any easier.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



I think you would benefit from a good 10-12k tandem axle trailer.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



A few weeks ago, i had to peel some really awful wallpaper in a bathroom, that they glued straight to the unfinished drywall with no underlayment. I used a product to break down the glue, but regardless the wallboard took heavy damage in some spots. Our options were full tear out, or seal and skim coat (almost) the whole room.

A dust-free drywall sanding attachment + a dust collection bag in the shop vac made this project a hell of a lot easier and less messy than I anticipated. If you need to repair damaged drywall this stuff is the poo poo. We had zero bubbling with primer or paint.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



That's a baller rear end huge sink.

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



Just mentioning since I didn't see it anywhere... But there's an be imgur uploader built into awful app, and it works a lot better than anything imgur intends for you to use. I dunno if you're using smartphone pics or a digital cam though, so this may be unhelpful.

IMO just post the h version, and if anyone wants to blow up your picture to find something obscure in the background to tag themselves, they can figure out how to copy/paste out the "h".

Awesome work at ever. Stringers on stringers!

angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



If those dead branches you were standing on gave way, you would make it to the ground but I think your nether regions may remain on lower branches between 20'-30'.

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angryrobots
Mar 31, 2005



I've had several buildings gutter'ed professionally. It's definitely not a job that's worth doing DIY.

Just find a reputable company who is willing to work with the downspout locations, attachment method, hardware, and materials that I'm sure you will specify. :D

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