A Quick Update and a New Hobbit Trailer

I wish I could report a bunch of progress this week at Hobbit Hollow but alas I cannot.  I stopped by a couple of days after work and got a few things ready for the weekend. Saturday morning I worked for about 2 and a half hours and then went to Terence’s football game at ten. I was able to finish the wall form extensions on both sides. Here it is.

Wall form extensions completed on both sides.
Wall form extensions completed on both sides.

Terence had a great first game by the way. I think they have a good core group of boys who are really into football. It will be fun to watch.

After Terence’s game I went back to the house. I was going to get a sandwich for lunch but I wasn’t that hungry. I got a coffee and one of these Entenman’s apple pies. I thought I had one of these before and seem to recall it was really good. It was horrible. I had one bite and that was it. Very disappointing.

So now that the wall extensions are finished we can begin framing.  Like I said before the hardest part is the first row of stringers, especially when you’re working by yourself. This centerline row has to be in the exact center of the house within about a half inch plus or minus. This is where the roofline templates will splice.(You’ll get what I’m talking about in a few weeks if all goes according to plan.) I had a pretty good system going setting these stringers up. The hardest part was really setting the stringers to the right elevation. I used this little laser level to set them. It’s pretty cool. The laser comes with a magnetic angle so you can hang it on anything metalic. I set it up on one of the metal jacks took a reading and then adjusted the other jacks to the correct height. Easier said than done. If you set the jack at the wrong height initially and are off by more than 3 inches you have to pull the pin out and reset the jack. Usually you have a partner lift the stringer up to release the tension on the pin and then the other man pulls the pin out. Once the pin is out the guy holding the stringer up lowers or raises it and then  the second man puts the pin in the right location. (I’m sure you’re a little confused right now). Needless to say in order for me to do this by myself was a tad difficult. Picking up a 16 foot stringer with one hand pulling the pin and resetting the height all in one motion while on an 8 foot step ladder was tricky. At one point I rested the stringer on my head in order to get the pin in the correct hole.Yeah,I woke up with a headache Sunday. Pass the Motrin please. Anyway, here’s what it looked like before I left for Jude’s game Saturday afternoon.

Center stringer set in place.
Center stringer set in place.

If you look at the jack on the right you can see the little laser level I was using.

For those of you who are looking forward to the second part of the Hobbit movie, a new trailer was released this passed week. If you go to You Tube just look up the Desolation of Smaug movie trailer. It looks pretty good.

Enjoy your week!





7 thoughts on “A Quick Update and a New Hobbit Trailer”

  1. You might be interested in checking out Walter Jeffries’ blog at SugarMtnFarm.com. He has built a small house made of concrete, and is in the process of building a butcher shop. Many arched ceilings/roofs are used in his buildings (although none as wide as yours) and he might give you some ideas on building the forms. Walter is a pig farmer by trade, but cement building building seems to be his passion.

    • Sally: Thanks for telling me about Walter Jefferies and his Sugar Mountain Farm! I haven’t been able to spend a lot of time at the site yet but what I saw was definitely interesting. The concrete stuff he has done is pretty advanced. I wish he had more pictures of how he built some of his stuff.Thanks again!


  2. I am completely fascinated with this project. I found your site today and read all the way through it. Thank you so very much for sharing.

    I am about to embark on a house building project of my own. Oh how I wish my husband was a LOTR fan too!

    Any chance you will share your plans for the layout of the inside of your Hobbit house?

    • Dear Sally: Thanks so much for leaving a comment! I’m glad you are enjoying the website. Apologies for not responding sooner but I’ve been getting home very late the past couple of nights. I would also like to thank you for helping with my blog for this weekend coming up. I will be sharing the floor plan for the hobbit house this weekend.(I have other plans for the weekend and won’t be able to work on the house.) Thanks again for writing!

      PS: If you don’t mind where did you find out about my website?

        • Hello again Sally! Yes this sized Hobbit house is probably the optimal size. One of the problems I came across with this project is the engineering aspects of such a large span. (i.e. The weight of concrete,soil and snow loads are tremendous) If you cut down the width of the span to about 18 to 24 feet your engineering issues will be much more manageable. If you show an architect or engineer the pdf file I have of the Hobbit shed they will have a pretty clear understanding of what you’re looking to do! Also the energy aspects of a passive house I believe are going to work hand in glove with this kind of structure. The energy saving aspects of this I think will be unbelieveable. Good luck and keep me posted on how you are doing!

          Hobbit Hollow Jim

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