Entries tagged as 'SIPs'
They are calling these homes "The Skinny Project".
They also launched a home customization tool for the Skinny and three additional models:
This house made with SIPs was created as a model for "sustainable, affordable housing" in Atlanta, GA.
From their model page (emphasis added):
The budget for the project: $160,000.
Hat tip: "+ MOOD" on August 7, 2009.
Nelse Design + Build constructed their first house using SIPs for the walls and roof:
model: Green Cubed
size: 2,667 sf
From their Green Cubed website:
A slide show is also available on the site.
Hat tip: Jetson Green on June 18, 2009.
From the slideshow:
Read the article for more information.
Title: On a Rock in a Hard Place
Subtitle: In an unlikely mountaintop locale, Anderson Anderson Architecture crafted a home out of a complex composition of off-the-shelf components, paving new paths for the prefabricated construction industry.
Author: Andrew Wagner
Publication: Dwell Magazine
Length: 1,389 words
Date: April/May 2005
GreenSource Magazine recently named their Best Green House for April 2009.
Read the entire article for more information and to see additional pictures.
Author: David Sokol
Publication: GreenSource Magazine
Section: Best Green Houses
Length: 356 words
Date: April 2009
Hat tip: Jetson Green on April 30, 2009.
Read the entire article for more information.
Title: Off the Beaten Path
Subtitle: A dramatic departure from your typical cabin on the lake, this unique retreat adds shades of black to a tiny island awash with local color.
Author: Eric Lawlor
Publication: Dwell Magazine
Length: 1,052 words
Date: July/August 2005
Apartment Therapy Re-Nest recently covered a house in East Hampton, NY built with SIPs.
The architect's site has more pictures and info:
Check out the post for more pictures.
Hat tip: materialicious on April 17, 2009.
See the post for details, including several more pictures.
The comments are also interesting, e.g.
See the post for a few more pictures.
We found model information on their site:
model: ModestHouse Mini
designer: Jeffrey McKean Architects
size: 850 sf
price: starting at $250/sf
designer: Jeffrey McKean Architects
size: 2,130 sf
price: starting at $250/sf
Watch their animated assembly video (1:17).
The Structural Insulated Panel Association has a conference in April:
(We've covered several prefab and modular homes that use SIPs.)
where: Chicago, IL
location: Hilton Indian Lakes Resort
date: April 20-23, 2009
cost: $450 members; $650 non-members
notes: View the complete agenda. (PDF)
Hat tip: Building Systems on March 24, 2009.
The company offers 4 models:
Check out the assembly videos on their website.
We previously covered SIPs and how they are made.
In constrast, an Agriboard SIP:
Recently, Boston Magazine featured an article about the VH R-10 gHouse on Martha's Vineyard.
Also worth noting: Petrucci is the director of the School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture at Arizona State University.
Read the entire article for more details.
Title: Outside the Box
Subtitle: An anything-but-typical dream home on Martha's Vineyard takes green design to new heights.
Author: Jessica Cerretani
Publication: Boston Magazine Magazine
Section: Featured Article
Length: 1,156 words
(Hat tip: materialicious on October 20, 2008)
Architectural Record shared an online excerpt of an April 2008 article about the VH R-10 gHouse on Martha's Vineyard.
Where did they come up with the name?
The local restrictions seem tight:
But the architect managed to work around them:
Details on the house:
model: VH R-10 gHouse
designer: Darren Petrucci, AIA
construction method: structural insulated panels (SIPs)
size: 1,000 sf
footprint: 16' x 40'
lot: 12,518 sf
Be sure to check out the images:
Title: VH R-10 gHouse
Subtitle: Pushing the envelope: Darren Petrucci reinvents the vacation guesthouse with the VH R-10 gHouse on Martha's Vineyard
Author: Beth Broome
Publication: Architectural Record
Length: 506 words (excerpt of article)
Date: April 2008
Core 77 reports:
Before pre-fab became so fabulously fab, the Small Homes Council at the University of Illinois in Urbana, Illinois published Homes From Pre-Assembled Wall Panels in 1954.
A bit more about the Small Homes Council, now known as the Building Research Council:
For over 50 years, BRC (formerly known as the Small Homes Council) has conducted housing research and provided public service to residents, homeowners, builders, contractors, engineers, architects, and others in the housing industry. Today BRC continues to draw on the expertise of its own staff and a campus-wide network of experts to improve the state of our built environment.
We could not locate the book on AbeBooks.
Here's a unique hybrid wall panel, sort of half SIP, half straw bale:
The Enviro Board panels offer a superior building product that is easy to handle and assemble. Today's Enviro Board Panels are solid "concrete like" fiber panels comprised of highly compressed straw fibers. Through the Enviro Board technology, panels are extruded through the mill in a continual process, covered with a durable waterproof paper membrane, cut to desired lengths and end-capped. Panel density and thickness can also be adjusted.
(Hat tip: Materialicio.us)
At the building conference last month, I spoke with a rep at ParcoHomes, a prefab start-up out of San Francisco. From what I gathered, the company plans to employ mass production techniques currently used for commercial buildings. Parts would be manufactured offshore, packaged, and shipped by sea and truck to your homesite. From the ParcoHomes website:
"We are designing, manufacturing and distributing resource efficient, modern, prefabricated homes employing a 'flat-pack' delivery approach. Our kit of parts is made up of metal-framed floor, roof and wall panels supported on a structural frame. The entire kit of parts is based on a four-foot planning module to allow for an ideal balance between constructability and flexibility."
EcoInfill is currently building the prototype of their Ei1 concept. The concept home's flexibility allows it to "be installed as a single family home, addition, or entire townhome project." I spoke with someone from Sexton + Lawton Architecture, the designers of the homes. He said that the homes will cost them ~$95/sf coming out of the factory; this translates to ~$175/sf installed. While the model home is not yet complete, they are hoping for a 3 month timeline from foundation work to move-in.
SG Blocks repurposes shipping containers for architectural purposes. Many companies building from recycled shipping containers are sourcing their product from SG Blocks. I spoke with a rep who explained that the $200/sf+ cost of building with recycled shipping containers is justified by the added strength and durability.
In addition to these prefab builders, there were a number of SIP manufacturers present. These include Alternative Building Concepts, Shimotsu Architecture and Distribution, and SIP Home Systems. I saw some interesting features, like pre-drilled mechanical chases for electrical connections.
"The house is composed entirely of off-site fabricated elements and ready-made components, assembled from the platform up in less than six weeks....The aluminum scaffold system, coupled with an array of connectors, provide both the structural frame and the means to connect cartridges, blocks and equipment to that frame with only the aid of a wrench.Integration of utilities into the home's "smart cartridges" sets the Loblolly apart. The full-module builders, like Hive Modular, Marmol Radziner, and Alchemy Architects, integrate utilities into multi-room modules that are shipped to the site near-complete. But the companies delivering flat-packed products, like the LV Series homes from Rocio Romero, require on-site work to incorporate utilities and finishes. The SIPs or stud-framed panels they ship generally incorporate little more than structure and insulation.
The assembly process begins with off-site fabricated floor and ceiling panels, termed 'smart cartridges.' They distribute radiant heating, hot and cold water, waste water, ventilation, and electricity through the house. Fully integrated bathroom and mechanical room modules are lifted into position. Exterior wall panels containing structure, insulation, windows, interior finishes and the exterior wood rain screen complete the cladding."
For the Loblolly House, this complete prefabrication was necessary to avoid large amounts of work on the sensitive site. The process even works in reverse:
"Just as the components may be assembled at the site swiftly with a wrench, so may they be disassembled swiftly, and most importantly, whole....It is a vision in which our architecture, even as it is disassembled at some unknown moment, can be relocated and reassembled in new ways from reclaimed parts."
Complementing the designs of Ray Kappe and David Hertz, LivingHomes plans to sell homes based on the system used in the Loblolly House. Also worth noting: Bosch produces the structural frame used for the Loblolly House and the TK iT House.
name: Loblolly House
size: 2,200 sf
price: not yet for sale
method: flat-pak, with utilities incorporated into panels
(Hat tip: Philly.com)
I recently had the opportunity to ask a few questions about the new product line from Jenesys Building Systems. Here's what I learned:
Have you constructed any prefab structures?
Yes. Two. Our first was a small one-off cabin, the precursor to our current line of prefab buildings that we are developing. The second is the prototype of our E Cube line.
Are any models available for sale with timely delivery?
All the models on our website are currently available for sale. Time of delivery depends on the specific options and degree of customization that a customer opts for, but we do have a chain of supply in place and are ready to take orders.
You mention the prototype; do you have any photos, imagery or other documentation of the process/final prototype?
We have some information on this page: http://jenesysbuildings.ca/products-ecube.html
Our prototype E Cube is now at "lock up", structurally complete with doors and windows. [We anticipate] completion of the finishing of the building and landscaping this summer.
Standard features of the E Cube include:
Optional features include:
name: E Cube
size: 1,398sf - 2,244sf
price: $91,000 - $172,000
The BRE Group is a British "research, consultancy, training, testing and certification organisation delivering sustainability and innovation across the built environment and beyond." They reported this week on the Osbourne demonstration house, built from SIPs:
"The Osborne demonstration house pushes the boundaries of sustainable affordable housing and supply chain integration. It was constructed in one and a half days using the Jabhouse Structural Insulated Panel System (SIPs)...The house uses the latest in modern methods of construction with:
The house needs two thirds less energy for heating and cooling than a house constructed to 2006 Building Regulations."
• a zinc and slate clad cassette roof that requires no trusses or rafters
• off-site manufactured bathroom pod and door sets
• a plug-together wiring system
• timber I-beam floor joists.
The custom clamping technique of the MHS (modular housing system) reduces site construction time to a few days. The lightweight aluminum can be assembled without heavy equipment, is resistant to rust and termites, and never needs to be painted.
Exterior cladding is offered in Zinculume (corrugated metal panels) or Ipe wood, both of which are weather resistant and durable. Interior surfaces come un-finished, requiring you and your local contractor to handle flooring and wall coverings, and all cabinetry, lighting, and other fixtures.
kitHAUS offers four standard modules, as well as 5 example configurations on their website. The standard building blocks are 17' square. K1 features a loft; K2 has a flat roof. The K3 module is smaller, at 9' x 13', and the K9 module (an actual offering) is a 4' x 4' home for your dog. The configuration examples range from 512 sf to 768 sf, but it is possible to combine more modules to create a dwelling (or doghouse) of any size.
The kitHAUS system offers a flexibility that is unmatched by any other home at the CA Boom show. The lightweight framing system and ease of assembly allow the kitHAUS to go places other prefab can't. For instance, if your homesite is on an island, or up some windy mountains roads, the kitHAUS can make the journey.
price: $3,500 - $59,000 for standard modules
size: 16sf - 768sf for the standard configurations
how: patented MHS framing system
timeline: delivery in 6 - 12 weeks, finishes applied post-delivery
Energy-efficiency and the environment are topics that are mentioned often by the prefab companies at CA Boom. The features of the H-Haus models don't take these topics lightly. H-Haus describes its services as "home design for a smart energy future."
The H-Haus line consists of 8 standard models, varying in size from a 612sf standalone guest house module, to a 2,100sf home, with garage, terrace, and two bedroom "suites." The models range in overall appearance, from the modern Cube 5 to the traditional/modern hybrid of the Cube 8. LIsted prices are in the $200k - $300k range. Most of the models feature colorful stucco finishes; other exterior finish options include metal siding, Hardiplank®, and Cultured Stone®. Several amenities are worth a mention: a standard 10'-0" height entry door, operable skylights, soaking bathtubs, gas fireplaces, and trellises for outdoors terrace areas, to name a few.
All models strive to combine a well-designed product with eco-friendly features. For example, the standard for Cube walls is an 8" pre-engineered system (compared to a 4" - 6" standard thickness in most homes), allowing for a great r-value (in the range of R-30 to R-50). Other features: energy-efficient windows, solar heating, rainwater catchment and wastewater recycling.
While such inclusions aren't revolutionary, or unique to H-Haus, the H-Haus folks do make a notable effort to incorporate green materials and products into their homes. To stress these features, while also trying to meet a certain aesthetic, IS a challenge. If you are seeking a low-impact prefab product, you should certainly look in the direction of H-Haus.
style: modern or modern/traditional hybrid
price: $200,000 - $300,000 for standard models
size: 612sf - 2,100sf for the standard models
br: 1 - 3 bedrooms
Many of the prefab models coming onto the market, like the CleverHomes, are built with a technology called SIPs. The acronym SIP stands for Structural Insulated Panel; the lowercase "s" is usually added to pluralize.
A SIP contains a 4" - 6" foam layer sandwiched between two layers of rigid material, usually oriented strand board (like plywood, but each layer is made of many small wood chips), plywood, or fiber cement board. This sandwich is the total thickness of your wall, roof or floor, minus the finishes.
The benefits of SIP include the ability to ship a wall panel to your house site that is cut to size and ready to install. Insulation and framing are handled in one step. Compared to standard stud-framing, the SIP is more likely to be the right dimensions, be flatter (compared to the waviness of the studs) and to have a built-in insulation system. The crew on site just fits the panels together.
The general critique of SIP construction in the home-building world is the initial cost, due to most of the labor being offsite in the factory. Considering we are discussing prefab, however, most of the labor for any product will be in the factory. Environmentally conscious folks might take issue with the use of such large quantities of foam in the panels. However, SIPs save construction waste on site, and ensure that your home will have one of the best energy efficiencies possible for the given wall thickness.
If you decide to build a home with SIPs, prefab or not, you need to make sure your contractor has prior experience with this method, as SIP construction is different from traditional construction. And, if the designer doesn't provide oversight, the contractor must make sure that drawings are accurate prior to approving for manufacture. Additionally, installation of electrical, plumbing and mechanical systems will require special techniques.
method: SIP (structural insulated panels)
what: panelized building system, composed of foam and OSB
pros: insulation values good, fairly quick assembly
cons: cost, coordination is key, not as fast as modules
The next player at the CA Boom 4 show will be CleverHomes. Their design and process is in contrast to the simplicty afforded by the weeHouse. As a result, more is possible with a CleverHome.
CleverHomes details 8 unique models on their website, along with 7 custom case-studies to show how their system can be tweaked and customized. The sizes run the gamut, from a 480sf one-room wood-sided shack, to a large 3,500+ sf modern estate. Styles range from ultra modern to log-cabin chic. All are rectilinear, and most feature flat roofs.
The design process includes a custom design for your lot and setting, satisfying the unique structural and site constraints of any project.
In contrast to the factory-built, fully finished, units that you get with a product like the weeHouse, CleverHomes are shipped to the site in unfinished pieces. Exterior wall sections, called SIPs, industry shorthand for "structural insulated panels", are shipped to the site and are erected by your choice of contractor, with oversight from the CleverHomes folks.
Finishes and fixtures are shipped separately, but "are delivered ready for on-site assembly". Construction schedules are stated to run in the "4-6 month" range. CleverHomes touts this somewhat-prefab process, saying that they "stop short of pre-fabricating large assemblies" when the factory process becomes limiting architecturally, or if the cost of moving a large prefab module would be too high.
CleverHomes is taking advantage of the prefab process in a way that most likely will become more common in the coming years. They are taking advantage of the quality control and cost-savings of the factory and a few pre-engineered schemes, while still allowing for a near-custom home as a product.
style: modern or traditional
price: prices not provided
size: 480 - 3,500 sf
br: 1 - 4 bedrooms
how: SIP construction
timeline: construction stated as ranging from 4-6 months