Jump to content

Quote from Architect


Zak S
 Share

Recommended Posts

1 minute ago, Bitpipe said:

rubber matting, resilient bars, sound block board etc but it seemed to make little difference.

It is doable. I have had to get sound tests for specific buildings such as schools* and nursing homes (pass but worrying: how do you resolve it on a finished building).

And once to find a solution to some noise transfer that just wasn't acceptable (flanking noise through a common concrete floor....cut a joint).

 

The fundamental lesson was to not trust the lab reports because they are in ideal conditions, but to examine where noise might leak through, and to use the next level up of construction. ie don't use a 40dB wall for 40dB reduction, but use 60dB and that should work as 40 (rough figures)

 

*woodwork class next to maths needs a very good wall and is best avoided, but is possible.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, Bitpipe said:

You need to hire a couple of teenagers for sound checking, especially the nocturnal variety who decide to do their hair at 1am.

 

More seriously, if you're having MVHR then you need to allow 7600mm2 under each door (i.e. a 10mm gap on a standard 760mm door) for air movement. This will also allow transmission of noise...

No need for teenagers as these days there are dead quite with headphones on. I can provide the services of my 4.5 year old as a tester. Actually, I might pay to get some peace. Cant wait for schools to open ?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, saveasteading said:

It is doable. I have had to get sound tests for specific buildings such as schools* and nursing homes (pass but worrying: how do you resolve it on a finished building).

And once to find a solution to some noise transfer that just wasn't acceptable (flanking noise through a common concrete floor....cut a joint).

 

The fundamental lesson was to not trust the lab reports because they are in ideal conditions, but to examine where noise might leak through, and to use the next level up of construction. ie don't use a 40dB wall for 40dB reduction, but use 60dB and that should work as 40 (rough figures)

 

*woodwork class next to maths needs a very good wall and is best avoided, but is possible.

 

So - how would you go about this if you were me?  ;) - I've done some work during planning and because we're trying to eliminate cold bridges, the elimination of 'noise bridges' at least is helped somewhat by having similar focus of those 'material lines' rather than the thin fluffy insulation stuff.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

46 minutes ago, puntloos said:

how would you go about this if you were me?

 

Firstly, where is the noise coming from?

Air borne, such as voices and radios? The fluffy stuff is best for reducing that.

Impact? Footsteps on the floor, doors shutting, This is mostly resounding through hard surfaces and resonating when it reaches you.

Does next door's tv hang on the party wall?

 

Draw some sketches, cross sections through your walls, floors & ceilings, and try to work out the likeliest routes for the sounds.

 

The likeliest solution will be to build new stud walls that don't touch the existing wall. This then receives density (plasterboard, perhaps even 2 thicknesses) and an absorbent filling of mineral wool. Any mineral wool will do but the 'acoustic' is obviously better. That will reduce noise directly through the wall because the new wall will not resonate from noise next-door.

You might want to strip the plaster first to limit the loss of floor space. You might even find then that there are gaps in the block wall and could fill them.

 

Once you have done the sketches you may establish whether noise is likely to be coming from their floor to yours. Can't suggest much at this stage. It would be good if your first floor joist was close to but not touching the party wall, so have a look at the nail line on the boards. If there is a gap you can fill that with mineral wool .too.

Carpets and underlay are a very simple sound deadener. 

 

There is a limit though, as your cross-walls are joined to the party wall, and will provide some transfer.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, saveasteading said:

woodwork class next to maths

Yes, no need to teach the craft people how to measure and add up.

 

I had to teach IT on the plumbing course.  Monday afternoon, in the room next to the sports field.

Monday afternoon was when the girl's football team practiced.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 03/01/2022 at 17:36, puntloos said:

Still, @Adsibob and @Gus Potter started a good list. Let us continue:

Quote

often you'll find that they don't bill you for every hour they work and that when you look at it in the round your shopping about has been fine up till now to enable you to get a feel for the cost but has now become counter productive in the relationship?

 

@puntloos"Can you rephrase that last sentence?"

 

Hi puntloos... of course! On reflection I should have chosen a different form of wording, but enthusiasm took over!

 

BH has a great range of members, from folk that are just starting out to serial self builders, professional Contractors, Architects, SE's and other real specialists that really know their subject inside and out. One common trait many have on BH (whether just starting out on you first DIY project or not) is that we spend a lot of time just thinking. I had a recent discussion with a highly experienced Architect (40+ years experience) where we mulled over how much time you "charge for" and how much "brain time" time you really spend on a project.

 

Some folk on BH will for example be sitting having say lunch, a Greggs bakers experience, putting the bins out.. just day to day stuff and presto.. into your head crops up an idea about your build / DIY project, how you solve a problem. This applies to almost everyone including those who make a living from design and construction. This thinking time often does not appear on any invoice / balance / spread sheet.

 

Things can become counter productive when there is a lack of clarity,  understanding between the design team and / or the contractor. Most commonly this is precipitated by a lack of effective communication. If you are say a novice self builder then you learn as you go. At some point you may become frustrated that things are not to your absolute satisfaction as you have been learning plenty..and this can start to eat away at you.. thus counter productive or words to that effect?

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's certainly a great question of what is 'fair' when it comes to how much to charge, how to be competitive etc. When your customers don't know you yet, it's tough to convey that you truly care, perhaps even 'overwork at Greggs' for a customer, while the uncaring competitor charges less, but sticks to the hours to the minute. At the end of the day it comes down to trust, starting small ideally etc. 

 

@Gus Potter thanks, yes indeed, not to mention what to focus your time on. As a novice self builder there's just too much stuff for me to wrap my head around. I'm getting somewhat proficient in heating but (shockingly, for a CS/microelectonics engineer) I know next to nothing about electrical, and indeed hardcore construction ('how to build the junction between 2 walls without a cold bridge'). It is very hard to figure out if studying any given topic will pay off the most. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, puntloos said:

It's certainly a great question of what is 'fair' when it comes to how much to charge, how to be competitive etc. When your customers don't know you yet, it's tough to convey that you truly care, perhaps even 'overwork at Greggs' for a customer, while the uncaring competitor charges less, but sticks to the hours to the minute. At the end of the day it comes down to trust, starting small ideally etc. 

 

@Gus Potter thanks, yes indeed, not to mention what to focus your time on. As a novice self builder there's just too much stuff for me to wrap my head around. I'm getting somewhat proficient in heating but (shockingly, for a CS/microelectonics engineer) I know next to nothing about electrical, and indeed hardcore construction ('how to build the junction between 2 walls without a cold bridge'). It is very hard to figure out if studying any given topic will pay off the most. 

Yes it's a dilemma as to a fair charge, Architects / SE's  and so on get a bit of a slagging on BH but it's social media!

 

I've been a member of BH for a couple of years (I think)  maybe a bit less so very much a newcomer when compared with the mods. Also, there are some past icons such as Jeremy Harris, still plenty folk that really know their stuff contributing and most importantly new members that are coming on board with new ideas as building technology is developing.. The new members, for me, keeps the site refreshed and the "old folk" on their toes! Another attraction for me is the humour that members come up with.. it's a great site for sharing ideas having fun with like minded folk and exploring ideas.

 

I post stuff about the SE side and the odd bit about the gorund but I learn a lot here and enjoy reading about what folk are doing and so on. It's a good friendly site.

 

Ok punloos.. your into electronics and systems.. but you have a brain and common sense. That is the key. Just ask your questions on BH, don't worry about asking a daft one, BH is not a knowledge test!

 

Often I think that folk worry about getting trolled, using their own name. Some folk crop up here on BH that clearly are professional developers asking for free advice, some are trying to play the planning system.. but on the whole I think many are just honest in their intention.. yes if you are in detailed negotiations to buy a plot then remain anonymous but after that.. ?

 

In summary just keep asking the questions, best to ask rather than build it and wish later you had not asked the question!

 

Oh and have you had a Greggs Steak bake yet! I know the guy who was part of the development team on the steak bake..So THERE! my claim to fame

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 03/01/2022 at 00:57, Adsibob said:

If you are using resilient bars, for example, I would also specify genie clips over standard ones. 

Also with a block and beam ceiling & masonry walls? 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 04/01/2022 at 22:02, puntloos said:

It's certainly a great question of what is 'fair' when it comes to how much to charge, how to be competitive etc. When your customers don't know you yet, it's tough to convey that you truly care, perhaps even 'overwork at Greggs' for a customer, while the uncaring competitor charges less, but sticks to the hours to the minute. At the end of the day it comes down to trust, starting small ideally etc. 

 

@Gus Potter thanks, yes indeed, not to mention what to focus your time on. As a novice self builder there's just too much stuff for me to wrap my head around. I'm getting somewhat proficient in heating but (shockingly, for a CS/microelectonics engineer) I know next to nothing about electrical, and indeed hardcore construction ('how to build the junction between 2 walls without a cold bridge'). It is very hard to figure out if studying any given topic will pay off the most. 

 

We (wife and I) are both from an electronic engineering background, In that domain there is an expectation that everything is designed & specified before moving to production as retrospective changes are not trivial (if even possible) - very much a waterfall method of development.

 

I'd liken self build to agile s/w development - sprints of activity where you then take stock at the end of each phase and course correct. Takes the pressure of needing to 'know everything' at commencement but you're still working to a fairly well defined framework. If you require absolutely fiscal certainty then you will pay a significant premium for that as your contractor will just price in all the risk.

 

Also, as the build takes place and you actually see it 'in the flesh' you may well change previous decisions, even ones that were firmly held. For that reason a degree of flexibility, however uncomfortable that makes you feel, is required. 

 

What is also important is that you find contractors who you trust in their field of expertise and do your best to specify the outcome you want but leave the implementation detail to them. Experienced trades don't often like being told how to do something by an inexperienced client, but they are happy to facilitate the what.

 

What worked well for me was having high certainty for works that were ongoing (with still some wriggle room), and deceasing certainty for works further out with some being just vague ideas (e.g. we will need the walls painted in 6 months, don't know who will be doing it or what colour they will be).

 

 

Edited by Bitpipe
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Bitpipe said:

I'd liken self build to agile s/w development

With limited testing/development, then send the bill to the MOD for £13bn.

Unless you have a mate in the government, then up the bill o £37bn.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, SteamyTea said:

With limited testing/development, then send the bill to the MOD for £13bn.

Unless you have a mate in the government, then up the bill o £37bn.

 

How many sqm of floorspace do I get for 37bn?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, Bitpipe said:

Experienced trades don't often like being told how to do something by an inexperienced client

Or from anyone. This can be tricky when you know they are wrong but not prepared to listen.

Often they don't know as much as they think, especially about design theory (the science bit).

 

Generally ask questions rather than telling them what to do.   eg, how are you planning to course the brickwork between these levels?

What do you plan to do so that the wood cladding is all in nice big strips?

How will you get the bricks through to the back garden?

How many workers will be here on Monday?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

29 minutes ago, saveasteading said:

Or from anyone. This can be tricky when you know they are wrong but not prepared to listen.

Often they don't know as much as they think, especially about design theory (the science bit).

 

Generally ask questions rather than telling them what to do.   eg, how are you planning to course the brickwork between these levels?

What do you plan to do so that the wood cladding is all in nice big strips?

How will you get the bricks through to the back garden?

How many workers will be here on Monday?

 

Completely agree - when faced with a challenge, I always opened with 'how would you do it if it was your house?'.

 

I was lucky in having an amazing electrician who had prior experience with MBC passive houses and had free rein on our house for design etc. Also had a very decent plumbing firm who were open minded on passive requirements and a talented joiner who came up with some thoughtful designs.

 

Rest of the trades (outside of MBC) were alright but they had a clearly defined job to do and did it to the spec.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The worst  being machine operators.

Over-digging (but they don't pay for muck away or more concrete

Filling too thick before compacting. "Look at that, it is perfectly hard"  (on top only).

Not using the roller because "the tracks do it much better".

 

Got a degree in this/ I'm the Engineer/ don't even do it because they are digger drivers and don't know what they don't know.

I'm your boss's client works though.

The worry though is that they are clearly doing this as standard and creating very inferior work elsewhere.

 

Next come bricklayers......etc.

 

An 'amateur' has to be even more diplomatic, and judge the balance between sensible control and getting in the way....but it can be done, and is important. 

 

 

Edited by saveasteading
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...
On 03/01/2022 at 00:57, Adsibob said:

Well, the tender drawings really need to show everything if you want comparable quotes. Can’t really be too prescriptive in my advice as I have no idea what you are building and what spec you are going for, but here are some examples of the things you need to cover: What insulation are you using and in what order and thicknesses? The build up of every wall floor and ceiling should be specified, including whether you are using resilient bars. If you are using resilient bars, for example, I would also specify genie clips over standard ones. 

 

And after experiencing a misunderstanding with my builder, i would also specify details such as which type of glue you want for essential things such as chipboard flooring. I specified Egger peel clean flooring, and even though they instructions specified to use Egger glue, my builder used a standard D4 glue initially. Once I spotted this, I insisted he use Egger’s version. It is also D4, but it is expanding D4 glue.

 

What air tightness measures are you implementing? Which tapes and which thicknesses? Primer spray as well?

 

 Electrical drawings and reflected ceiling drawings should also be very detailed showing location of all switches and at least the number and type of of sockets in each room. Where you have non standard features like two or three way lighting your drawings should also specify this.

 

 You should also be really clear as part of your tender pack what you will be supplying materials-wise and what you expect others to supply. 
 

You probably also want to think about glass spec in all glazing. 2G or 3G. Solar control? If so, which type/colour. Safety features of rooflights? PAS24 ?

 

I’m barely scratching the surface…

 

 

 

 

There is a lot there . Is there a source to learn this material?

I know I’ve had to help redesign initial plans and fear there might not be the detail in future drawings.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 04/01/2022 at 16:08, SteamyTea said:

I went to Jeremy's not long before he moved in. I was amazed how quiet and non echoy it was.

Was Jeremy able to explain what he did to reduce echo. ?  Our house has exhaust from garage going to bedroom above. Sounds of footsteps in the rooms above the lounge. In my new build, I want to avoid that. I also want to sit in a tv lounge next to open plan kitchen diner and avoid  much sound transfer between the rooms . It looks like it is not easy to soundproof , but some use a dense vinyl layer on floor and walls . What do you think ?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, 7dayworker said:

Was Jeremy able to explain what he did to reduce echo.

It seems it was a by-product of his construction type.

He bought a timber frame house by MBC.  They use a twin wall construction that incorporates wood fibre and cellulose insulation, sitting on an insulated raft foundation.

When I was there, the downstairs had been tiled, the first floor was bare.  I am not sure if anyone else at the time had noticed the sound deadening (a few of us visited), and it was not until I was making some other comments about the place I said about it.

His place was also very airtight, so no holes though walls, and he had triple glazing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, SteamyTea said:

It seems it was a by-product of his construction type.

He bought a timber frame house by MBC.  They use a twin wall construction that incorporates wood fibre and cellulose insulation, sitting on an insulated raft foundation.

When I was there, the downstairs had been tiled, the first floor was bare.  I am not sure if anyone else at the time had noticed the sound deadening (a few of us visited), and it was not until I was making some other comments about the place I said about it.

His place was also very airtight, so no holes though walls, and he had triple glazing.

That’s interesting . I’m making notes for our builder. Thanks .

He mentioned he should have used triple glazing in his home but ran low on his finance 2 years ago. I will ask about the wood fibre and cellulose .

thanks again Steamy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

14 minutes ago, 7dayworker said:

That’s interesting . I’m making notes for our builder

A few others have TFs from the same company, not sure who has the twin wall design.

The twin wall is nothing special from what I understand.  Seems to be basically adding on an extra layer of insulation, in a frame, onto the outside of the building.

Noise deadening is not just to do with adding mass to a building.

Regarding glazing, I have a suspicion that many houses are over glazed.  Now I can understand that if you have a fantastic view, but to be honest, not many of us do.  I overlook an old tin mine, many think that is a good view, just industrial landscape scaring as far as I am concerned.

Reducing overall area, but carefully placing glazing, may be a better way to go, then over insulate any north and east facing walls to compensate for the gazing's lower U-Value.

Really a case of moving away from the minimum standards of the building regulations.

The regulations, in themselves, are not terrible, but it can easily get corrupted by design.

So take a simple wall with glazing at 1.2 W.m-2.K and the wall at 0.1 W.m-2.K.

Would be a pretty good wall if only 15% was glazed, but if 70% is glazed it would be dreadful.

Then add in some leaky bi-fold doors, and you may as well put your heating system in the garden.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 hours ago, 7dayworker said:

to reduce echo.

Reverberation can be a problem when the surfaces are hard (it doesn't matter much what is behind). It becomes more of a nuisance when hard surfaces are parallel, and worst when all the 6 faces are parallel to the opposites.

 

Furniture and other furnishings help a lot, eg curtains, pictures., carpets.  

 

Sound through walls, floors and ceilings is another  matter altogether.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks to all here. We will agree the final plans and go to planning in a few weeks. 
I noted from this site that the front wall and drive will need to be included by the architect ..shame it was not done .

there are these little gems here . 
Even though I’m not building the home, I can throw these nuggets into the talk .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 19/03/2022 at 07:58, SteamyTea said:

A few others have TFs from the same company, not sure who has the twin wall design.

The twin wall is nothing special from what I understand.  Seems to be basically adding on an extra layer of insulation, in a frame, onto the outside of the building.

Noise deadening is not just to do with adding mass to a building.

Regarding glazing, I have a suspicion that many houses are over glazed.  Now I can understand that if you have a fantastic view, but to be honest, not many of us do.  I overlook an old tin mine, many think that is a good view, just industrial landscape scaring as far as I am concerned.

Reducing overall area, but carefully placing glazing, may be a better way to go, then over insulate any north and east facing walls to compensate for the gazing's lower U-Value.

Really a case of moving away from the minimum standards of the building regulations.

The regulations, in themselves, are not terrible, but it can easily get corrupted by design.

So take a simple wall with glazing at 1.2 W.m-2.K and the wall at 0.1 W.m-2.K.

Would be a pretty good wall if only 15% was glazed, but if 70% is glazed it would be dreadful.

Then add in some leaky bi-fold doors, and you may as well put your heating system in the garden.

 

Two different issues at play here - one is insulating from outside noise and the other from internal noise.

 

The first is easier to achieve  - well insulated walls (we have the twin wall system) good airtightness, triple glazed windows without trickle vents etc will all minimise noise transmission from outside (traffic etc).

 

Internal noise transmission is much trickier as your rooms are harder to isolate from each other. You may be able to create a quiet room but I have met some self builders who have spent a lot on resilient bars, rubber mats, sound-blocking plasterboard etc and all to little effect.

 

Agree on badly planned glazing - when your house is well insulated this can lead to significant overheating due to solar gain. We have external blinds to east and south glazing which is very effective.

 

In regard to the twin wall, it's a specific timber frame design that allows a relatively deep cavity between inner (load bearing) and outer walls that is filled with pumped cellulose insulation while reducing cold bridging and also ties in with a passive slab which decouples the structural elements from the elements. You can get similar performance from different approaches like ICF or block & beads etc.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 27/12/2021 at 11:14, Zak S said:

Hi. I have engaged architect

https://architects-register.org.uk

 

now for my self build project. We appoint the architect who came at the top of the cost as we liked some of his work. He designed two house on the same street as demolish and rebuild. These are pretty big houses around 450sqm or more. On the basis of his experience with the same council and familiarity of the road as well as the design he has done (some of which award winning), we appointed him. His cost is slightly more than 15k including Buildings regs and tendering. I am pretty hands on with arranging things myself so Measured building survey/topo/bats survey/CCTV drainage survey has all been done so he would not need to do anything even in terms of tendering. Please could you advise how to achieve best value for each pound I spend on planning and design as well as tendering process. Tendering process only makes sense if he organises tenders from sub trades as no point asking for tenders from a builder as I can do that myself so dont see any value in that. Any feed back and thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

 


You only need him to do a design and get Planning Permission and Building Control Approval. Tell him that’s all you need and get him to re-quote his fees. He will more than likely need to appoint a SE on your behalf (depending on the design). Do your own SAP CDM and tendering. Ask him for an hourly rate to be on the end of the phone during the construction phase. Let him do any survey - put as much liability in his lap as you can. Giving him measured surveys that you have done is asking for trouble.

 

If you are self building and organising the trades yourself there is no value in him tendering the works - all he will do is send out his drawings to a few main contractors and as a self builder this is not what you want.

 

Be aware that the drawings he produces for building control will not necessarily be good enough to tender from. Ask him for a cost to produce proper construction drawings for you. My building regulations drawings will always go a wee bit above and beyond and will allow the client to tender the majority of the works. I don’t do door or window schedules or specify specific kitchen or sanitary ware fittings and fixtures. Good luck.

Edited by jack
Quote formatting
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...