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Old 03-24-2012, 02:04 PM   #16
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None of them seem to look built for a cold/northern climate
I think you'd be surprised at what survives the North. Obviously you want to stay away from walls made of glass, frost heaves will destroy them. There seem to be quite a few homes though that have gabled roofs and look no different than other homes in my town. The problem I have with that is that the other homes in my town fall apart, because the "normal" building design isn't actually all that smart for a northern purpose.

There are others that appear to be much sturdier and architecturally pleasing at the same time that appeal to me more... like this one:



Maybe I should make this happen in a year or two... as for the mortgage thing, I have a 3.1% fixed rate mortgage right now... I won't do anything unless I can afford it at 10% anyway, because I don't want to get kicked out of my house if things tank.
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Old 03-24-2012, 04:32 PM   #17
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None of them seem to look built for a cold/northern climate
They are a great idea in California.
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Old 03-24-2012, 05:18 PM   #18
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Pre-fab houses are appropriate for any local. ANY. They've been designed for it. I designed these things for the last 10 years. Lots of people simply voicing their pre-conceived no-info opinions here. A house can not be erected without compliance to the local rain and snow loading criteria. That being said an inappropriate house can always be chosen. With the advent of CAD it's become too easy for an architect to indulge in complexity for it's own sake. The KISS rules apply. Extremely cut up roof lines and short overhangs are pointless, costly and will impact the serviceability of the structure. - Gables over entries are a must for snowy locations - unless you enjoy living with the potential of being burried alive and constant shoveling. The design in picture above is extremely cost effective. I've considered something very similar (albiet in my dreams) for years. Simple construction and inexpensive materials and it even looks pretty groovy. It's as simple as a box but changed up enough to make it interesting to look at.

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Old 03-24-2012, 05:36 PM   #19
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Anyone know what and if there are municipal restriction for placing one on a site where the old house has been removed? Say some place like New Westminster. Wondering what sort of price comparison there would be to building a knew house to a pre fab.
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Old 03-24-2012, 05:43 PM   #20
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They are solid. Just make sure u get one that is on a good concrete
base and not brick.
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Old 03-24-2012, 06:00 PM   #21
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None of them seem to look built for a cold/northern climate
I have a hard time imagining that a house built in Manitoba wouldn't be fit for cold climates.


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Old 03-24-2012, 07:03 PM   #22
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Also look into building with SIP's. Structural Insulated Panels. The problem might be finding a local contractor that knows how to use them depending where you are.
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Old 03-25-2012, 05:12 AM   #23
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What's the deal with linwood homes?
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Old 03-25-2012, 07:01 AM   #24
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What's the deal with linwood homes?
Not sure, but I dig this:

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Old 03-25-2012, 07:11 AM   #25
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Also look into building with SIP's. Structural Insulated Panels. The problem might be finding a local contractor that knows how to use them depending where you are.
Took a tour of the manufacturing plant for the SIP panels a couple of years ago. They can build some very complicated buildings if that is what the customer wants.
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Old 03-25-2012, 07:28 AM   #26
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domicilex have nice ones.ikea make them too now.seriously!
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Old 03-25-2012, 07:40 AM   #27
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Old 03-25-2012, 08:11 AM   #28
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steel skinned SIPs + steel framing are a very flexible building method.

a ton of telecom equipment shelters and industrial type prefab buildings are made from SIPs. there's ways you can make the structures more aesthetically pleasing by adding extra stuff on the outside...

here's a design I like:

http://homeklondike.com/2010/10/29/e...st-steel-home/

I've done datacom wiring and IT infrastrucure in buildings like these overseas. I don't think they quite meet north american building codes, and they're too ugly to use for homes, but for industrial sites, they go together REALLY fast and provide a lot of space in a short time. better than atco in my opinion. notice that the individual units are the same size as 20' or 40' ISO cargo containers, so the same container handling cranes and equipment can be used for erection.

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Old 03-25-2012, 09:43 PM   #29
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Pre-fab houses are appropriate for any local. ANY. They've been designed for it. I designed these things for the last 10 years. Lots of people simply voicing their pre-conceived no-info opinions here. A house can not be erected without compliance to the local rain and snow loading criteria. That being said an inappropriate house can always be chosen. With the advent of CAD it's become too easy for an architect to indulge in complexity for it's own sake. The KISS rules apply. Extremely cut up roof lines and short overhangs are pointless, costly and will impact the serviceability of the structure. - Gables over entries are a must for snowy locations - unless you enjoy living with the potential of being burried alive and constant shoveling. The design in picture above is extremely cost effective. I've considered something very similar (albiet in my dreams) for years. Simple construction and inexpensive materials and it even looks pretty groovy. It's as simple as a box but changed up enough to make it interesting to look at.
let's see some examples then?
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Old 03-25-2012, 10:45 PM   #30
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let's see some examples then?
Have a walk through your neighborhood and look at the houses. The last place I worked had 2 shifts - 16hrs a day pumping out wall panels, roof trusses and floor systems. I also sold and designed SIP and ICF houses. These houses are out there...

My employer, Nascor, while I lived in Calgary, would manufacture homes in sections inside a shop ship them in pieces on trucks and stack them up on site. I worked to design them structurally - they took some serious consideration as the individual pieces - say, 2 bedrooms and a kitchen - would have to be robust enough to transport independent of the rest of the home. Each piece had to be considered a "complete" structural system, rather than the entire finished home, which is the typical aproach to design. You'd never know you where looking at one, once complete.

We did an entire golf course developement this way, high end crap (oxymoron intended) Homes would simply "appear" on site a week later. Pretty cool from a logistic and engineering standpoint. And as I designed a good chunk of them I like to think they where done right ; )

If you want pictures and the like I got nuthin. It was a job I did. I seldom left my desk to go to site. While I enjoy design and am passionate about it I was simply another speciallized step in the process. This is the beauty of the system. Each step has the attention of a professional. The architect, the designers, the builders, the site assemblers (and many more).

A home built entirely by a couple, three, dudes on site with a pickup, skill saw and a chain saw is unlikely to match this in price or performance. Three guys that kinda know how to read a plan, kinda know how things work structurally, kinda know how concrete works etc... I'm generalizing of course - the processes are more involved and this is a bike forum post.

I mean no disrespect to framers BTW some builders are amazing and build incredible stuff. I just mean to confirm that pre-fab is not some new fangled fad - It's legit and you'd likely be surprised by some of the results. They're also completely appropriate for whatever they're designed for.

Last edited by superl8; 03-25-2012 at 10:52 PM.
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