What’s the most affordable small house foundation

Discussion in 'Homestead Construction' started by Kevo, Feb 26, 2020.

  1. IMFoghorn

    IMFoghorn Well-Known Member

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    I've cut those tubes used to roll carpet to the proper length to use as concrete forms on a couple of occasions with good results. I flare out the bottom of the dug hole to enlarge the weight bearing surface.

    JMO
    Doug
     
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  2. Kevo

    Kevo Active Member

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    Unfortunately, I believe cardboard tubes that carpet come on, have a small diameter. The quikrete tubes at Lowes are $15 for a 12" diameter x 48" long tube.
    I would think you could use the hole itself as part of the form. - My thought was to dig a 12" diameter hole 2 1/2' deep and try to "flare out the bottom foot as best I can, fill 6" gravel, then place and secure form tube about 6" in the hole and 18" above grade. That way I could use 1 tube for every 2 piers. 24 piers = 12 Tubes = $180
    Still in the figuring it out stage! :)
     

  3. The Paw

    The Paw Well-Known Member

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    I had a mobile home sitting on stacked lumber piers on top of a compacted gravel pad. Laid 6 mil poly on the ground for a vapour barrier, and installed some skirting I bought from the local mobile home dealer. The skirting was 1 inch low density styrofoam with a solid sheet of vinyl siding on the outside. The same kind of vapour barrier and skirting would work on a poured foundation.

    Some end vents kept moisture from building up in the crawl space during summer, and you close them up for winter and it keeps the crawl space quite a bit warmer, less problems with freezing pipes etc. The poly is easy to slide around on if you have to go underneath and fool with anything.
     
  4. RobertDane

    RobertDane Well-Known Member

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    Is this a wood frame construction? My home..33' x 55' typical footing and stem wall construction. .....no slab...It holds up well. I think your type of ground would be a determining factor..I have 8 - 10 inches of topsoil and then hard clay..Believe me I've dug lots of holes here..Different bases might require another approach...
     
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  5. mreynolds

    mreynolds Well-Known Member

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    They used to leave them open so the chickens could go under there and eat the bugs and termites. Of course they used to do a lot of things different before AC. At least down here anyway.
     
  6. mreynolds

    mreynolds Well-Known Member

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    I agree with this. Not enough info to really know for sure. Piers do tend to work where other foundations wont though.
     
  7. Bearfootfarm

    Bearfootfarm Hello, hello....is there anybody in there.....? Supporter

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    My house was built on piers and later they bricked between them.
     
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  8. mreynolds

    mreynolds Well-Known Member

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    Back in the day I built a few decks for Lowes on contract. The plan they used I was told was for any American code from hurricane to seismic code in California. It was a one size fit everything type.

    It was a 12" sonotube. It had #4 rebar and in the middle it had a 3/4" all thread J bolt 2' long. After it dried, we attached Simpson JP leveler to the 3/4" J bolt.

    [​IMG]

    https://www.strongtie.com/miscellaneousconnectors_woodconnectors/j-jp_jackpier/p/j.jp

    After that, you are aces. I would not have had a problem with driving a Bobcat over her porch.
     
  9. mreynolds

    mreynolds Well-Known Member

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    I wish I had a phone that took pictures when I worked on that house with the cypress logs as piers. It was built in 1865. Theyear after the war was over. Still no rot. Just Cypress logs in the ground for almost 200 years now.
     
  10. mreynolds

    mreynolds Well-Known Member

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    I should also mention that we built Carthage HIgh School stadium with nothing more than 30" Sonotubes. They were in the ground 20' but that 12" Sono should be more than adequate for your single story house.
     
  11. Bearfootfarm

    Bearfootfarm Hello, hello....is there anybody in there.....? Supporter

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    The first house I owned was on piers with bricks around the outside.

    When first built, the kitchen was at the end of a long open porch so if there was a fire it wouldn't burn the rest of the house. As years went by the porch was enclosed. I had to replace some sub flooring and when I tore out the old stuff I found two main beams joined together on top of one of the piers.

    They were hand hewn logs squared up and joined by mortise and tenons held together with dowel pins.

    I wish I had thought to take pictures, but that was before I had a decent camera and they still needed film. (1979-1980)

    Years later a girl stopped by to ask some questions about the house for a historical survey. It seems they had never found a map of the town or surrounding area that didn't show that house, so they couldn't determine when it was built. The town was incorporated in 1891.

    We put the blue siding on in the early 80's, and some of the big oaks that were there then are gone due to hurricanes.

    https://www.instantstreetview.com/@35.471876,-77.412281,197.82h,1.16p,1z

    If you scroll around you can see the barn on the left of the lot where the original owners kept their wagon and mule and you can see how the back of the house was once separated from the front.
     
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  12. mreynolds

    mreynolds Well-Known Member

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    I love craftsmen style architecture. It is pure as the Greek (who stole it from the Akkadians). These days those new fangled "carpenters" are doing 45's on their trim that doesn't need it.

    Why do you need to miter a simple 1x4 for trim? Blasphemous I tell ya. Simple minded and easy. Like a Bic throw away lighter. No wonder houses don't last as long as they used to.

    Did I mention I was a design snob? Don't tell anyone else though.
     
  13. mreynolds

    mreynolds Well-Known Member

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    I love the Craftsmen style Architecture. It is pure and these days there are not many pure carpenters left. Most look for sort cuts.
     
  14. 67drake

    67drake Member

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    Any update on this project Kevo?
    Im planning a similar project and curious how yours came/comes out?
     
  15. Rodeo's Bud

    Rodeo's Bud Well-Known Member

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    The reason there are no pure carpenters anymore, is because customers don't want to pay for it. Carpenters can't do it for free.

    You could have a 1,500 square foot house with Craftsman construction quality and details or you can have a 3,000 square foot McMansion for the same price.

    Most go for the McMansion.

    By the way, I never miter exterior trim, and only miter interior if it is cheap beveled casing. I prefer to do built up or perimeter capped Victorian style trim.

    But then its back to getting paid for it.
     
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  16. Dirtdigging101

    Dirtdigging101 Member

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    Here is the basics,

    Concrete never comes in contact with wood, NEVER. Asphalt shingle works well between the two.

    Keep soil pressure to less than 1500 lbs per sq ft

    You must have lateral stability, so sometimes you need diagonal bracing.

    Nearly all pressure treated wood on box stores is for exterior use, not ground contact.


    Paul
     
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  17. mreynolds

    mreynolds Well-Known Member

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    30 years ago all treated was for ground contact. Now it's not. That is just crazy in my mind.

    But I am just an old fool I guess. ;)
     
  18. Dirtdigging101

    Dirtdigging101 Member

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    Not really, years ago it was 3 different levels of treatment, .25, .4, .6 lbs per cubic foot, big box stores had the first two, u vould order the .6,

    .6 was good for wood foundation.
     
  19. mreynolds

    mreynolds Well-Known Member

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    We did have bog box stores 30 years ago. We got our first about 20 years ago. It was all local lumber retailers and it was all ground contact. Arsenic treated. CCA. That and a local creosote treating company.

    It wasn't until after we got the big box stores that they catered to the weekend warrior mostly we had the other stuff. I have had decks built and on the same property the weekend warrior added on to it and ot rotted before the one I built did. They called me and asked me why. I told them to take it up with out local Lowes.
     
  20. Fishindude

    Fishindude Well-Known Member Supporter

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  21. Dirtdigging101

    Dirtdigging101 Member

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    May be common but is dead wrong. There is a seal that goes there!!