Cedar siding

ruby_sidingSMWe’re now working to get the siding on the cottage before the winter rains set in. When deciding what to clad this thing with, we were originally looking at fiber cement siding (Hardieplank). I specify it a lot on commercial buildings, and it has a good mix of affordability, longevity, and it’s mostly recycled. Oh, and it’s fireproof, which is handy if you live in a forest. But after some thought, we decided to go with cedar siding, because it’s what the place wants. All those pretty trees need a house made of wood, one that feels and smells like nature. And cedar has benefits, too: it’s environmentally friendly, easy to work, smells great, resists rot and insects, weathers beautifully, and is a locally grown and sourced material.


Above, we see Emily demonstrating how to apply cedar shingle siding. Most of the house is horizontal bevel siding, but we’re using shingles to accent the bumpouts and create visual interest. Ironically, the shingles are by far the most fun to put on, but make up only about a fourth of the wall area. Hmm, gotta plan that better next time. Emily and I sided the south side of the mudroom, and she showed Allyson how to do it the next day on the north side. Experts!

Here’s a funny picture that may need explanation. Emily is hauling a battery up the hill to the house. It’s a special battery, deep cycle large capacity for the solar power system. I haven’t talked about that much yet, as we’ve only just begun installing it, but we’ll be getting into it in a later post. She’s working pretty hard, because that battery weighs 125 pounds. Thank goodness there are only 15 more to get up the hill besides this one.

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2 Responses to Cedar siding

  1. ChickenBrian says:

    Do you have to be worried about out-gassing from the batteries? Industrial Battery installations I’m familiar with often require an exhaust fan above the battery racks to evacuate any out-gassing? Where are you putting the batteries? In the crawl space?

    • jim says:

      Ah yes, you are knowledgeable about such things. These batteries are sealed AGM batteries, and don’t offgas like the normal deep cycle batteries. Disadvantage: they cost twice as much, which is why you’ll not likely see them in an industrial setting. Our house is small enough that I couldn’t figure out a way to get them their own room, though the dealer showed me some pictures of vent-hood type arrangements other users had built over their standard batteries. I wasn’t too into that, as it uses standby power to vent them. It’s a bit of a design conundrum: for best performance, the batteries should be kept warm. But you don’t want them in the conditioned space, because of the sulphuric gas.
      So, our solution was to keep them in the conditioned space and pay extra for sealed units. Where to put them was also a problem; the crawlspace is hard to access, and the attic corners was a possibility but the batteries weigh a scratch under 2,000 pounds so I didn’t want to overload the structure. We’re going to put them in a bench cabinet in the mudroom, which will put them close to the inverter (for short runs of a really FAT battery cable), and the heat from the inverter should help keep them warm as a side benefit.

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