the Tire Bale house project


October 2012 -

cistern berm

There are a lot of decisions to be made about where to put fixtures and switches. Steve made electrical drawings in AutoCad so we can have a hard copy to work with.

We started to frame the battery room whenever it was raining outside and couldn't work on the stone front. The battery room is just inside the east door. The picture on the left shows the pipes coming up from the floor and are connected to the solar array outside. Those pieces of white paper taped to the wall represent the placement of the inverter, charge controller, dc breaker box, battery meter, and AC kilowatt meter. The AC kilowatt meter is a refurbished old style dial one from back before the electronic smart meters came into existence.




Here's another shot from a different angle. The stud wall facing you will hold the water filters and UV filter. The laundry room is right next to it where the pipe is in the floor.





We started putting up conduit in the living room walls. We wanted to use conduit in case we needed to pull an additional wire through or had to replace a wire in the future. We thought we'd make use of the voids in the tire walls to mount the outlet boxes. We took a scrap piece of wood cut to size and covered it with two layers of 6-mil plastic. We screwed it into the tires with long screws. Before we mounted the board we had to stand a piece of plywood upright against the tires to figure out how far out to mount the outlet box so it would be flush with the finished wall.



Steve started out using 45 and 90 degree elbows (all schedule 40 pvc pipe) but found out that the local store only had a few in stock.




Now we had to figure out how to bend the schedule 40. Here's a great job for the heat gun. Just warm up the pipe, without melting it, and bend any way you need to.




It really worked great and saved a bunch of money and gluing time. This will also make pulling wire through the pipe easier since there will be a lot fewer joints to get stuck on.



We wanted a way to monitor the temperature of the water in the cisterns. Steve designed and programmed a controller to do just that. He ran a wire with a temperature probe on the end into the first cistern. He used a chunk of scrap blueboard for a float to keep the temperature probe in position. Then he programmed a controller to show the temperature. He plans on mounting a tablet computer to the same board as the inverter (see the first photo above) connected by Wi-Fi to the house systems controller. This will show us the cistern water temperature at the touch of the tablet screen.


March 2013 -

We were wondering how to hang cabinets and install the electrical in the kitchen. Tire bale walls are anything but flat. We decided that an old fashioned stick wall would work best for this. So, we built the wall for the kitchen cabinets and also the wall for the pantry in the back of the room.



Here Steve is using a Ramset to attach the wall to the floor. With the use of a hammer, you pound on the top of the Ramset and it fires a .22 caliber charge (not a bullet) and propels a nail into the floor.




Here's the reason for the stick wall for hanging the cabinets. Notice how uneven the tire bale wall is. We thought that no matter what we did to fill in the wall and try to make it straight, it would be more unstable to hang cabinets than doing it this way. This picture also shows some of the kitchen electrical wiring.




The picture on the left shows the cabinet wall with wiring.

The picture on the right shows the framing for the pantry wall.




We wanted to build an arched doorway between the kitchen and the living room so we got that framework done too.



Notice that we haven't mudded in the walls yet? We need to get all the electrical and the plumbing in first then we intend to spray all that mud in. Later on that...


More to come...


Wild Turkeys

Sometimes in the Fall and Winter, the
wild turkeys pay us a visit.
Got Corn?


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