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The Nightmare Begins


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#21 manders

 
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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:03 AM

I guess the worst that could happen to your greenhouse is that they could land you with a huge fine, ask you to take it down and rebuild it nine inches lower?!


If you dig down far enough it would be frost free, like some of the victorian glasshouses.

#22 Dicon

 
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Posted 20 April 2012 - 12:23 PM

Anyone with a clipboard will have to get past

Ffisst !!
:sarcastic_blum:
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Edited by Dicon, 20 April 2012 - 12:25 PM.


#23 Simon Lumb

 
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Posted 20 April 2012 - 14:12 PM

Matt Im in the process of having a log cabin/summer house built its 4m x 4m and 2.5m high and the planning laws are something to think about as are the boundry laws as my neighbour 'kindly' pointed out. My project is not for plants but maybe one day something will find a way its way in there even it its only a few incubators with lights for seedlings, but I darent even mention this to the reichfuhrer or I'm a dead man.


S

#24 Dicon

 
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Posted 20 April 2012 - 15:27 PM

I am all within the rules apart from the 9inches
Only thing is if I cut that off I'll never pacify the missus :woot:

Edited by Dicon, 24 July 2012 - 23:11 PM.


#25 Dicon

 
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Posted 24 July 2012 - 23:09 PM

All work and no play makes jack a dull boy
All work and no play makes jack a dull boy
All work and no play makes jack a dull boy
All work and no play makes jack a dull boy
All work and no play makes jack a dull boy
All work and no play makes jack a dull boy
All work and no play makes jack a dull boy
All work and no play makes jack a dull boy


Ok time for an update,
What a shocking couple of months of weather we have had!

I have spent week after week sanding down, and preparing the timber sections, treating and priming ready for erection.
Smaller sections were worked on under the lean-to and in the garage.
Larger sections have had to wait for dry days, which have been very scarce!
So too jobs like treating the prepared timbers and laying them out to dry, I just don’t have enough space under cover and every day has been wet or promising rain, a real headache!

Every job seems so endless, it is very hard to keep the enthusiasm going, for example, each roof spar whilst only 12ft long, has 6 flat faces to be sanded (as they are tapered in section) each has 2 rebates with a rubber seal to remove, clean (scrape, sand, scrape again) and replace. x by 38 and that amounts to 2600ft of timber to pass my little orbital sander alone! Plus nearly 900ft of EDPM seal to replace.

This job really feels like the “Forth Bridge”, ‘though without the bonus of being able to throw myself from it when totally fed up!!

I have tried to get fairly advanced with the refurb before decanting the plants to their temporary home and taking down the old greenhouse.

Temporary enclosure ready to take the highlanders and a few lowlanders
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Plants moved in
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Orchids in the conservatory.
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Old electrics and water filtration system
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Old GH takedown
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Demolished and skipped the old blockwork base during a massive thunderstorm, the only job that wasn’t hindered by the rain! The wife even had a go with the sledgehammer (likes destroying things) but when it comes to the laborious stuff like sanding and painting, ”you’re on your own mate”

Called in the brickie to do a 5 day job, and then it pissed down for 7 out of the next 11 days!, the yard flooded and the rain just kept coming. Fortunately the house has never been in danger, but it is still worrying and so I put the pump into the soakaway sump and pumped away 7000L/hr for 2 whole days…………what a crap summer!

I bought almost enough bricks from a neighbour, they are a tumbled and sand-faced brick and look like old reclaimed bricks but are hard and to class B spec, I made up the shortfall with class B’s for the first course and quoined corners. I have used a 100mm thermal block for the inner leaf with a 50mm insulated cavity.
I also built in a cool passage within the cavity that will draw fresh air in through air bricks, along the cool, damp passage and into the Highland section, this should aid summer cooling by 1 or 2 deg C. I have also set a raised insulated slab under the Lowland section and a duct to feed the gas heater.

Finally the brickwork was done
Progress has been much slower than I had anticipated, mostly due to the weather, however, the poor weather has also provided a milder climate for the plants whilst in their temporary homes, so I am not so unhappy, I guess the storm clouds have had a silver lining.

Finally I decided to replace the rusty old steel brackets (invent some missing ones) and strainers with stainless steel plate and wire cables with turnbuckle strainers. Making up the cables is fairly simple but hard on the hands.

The whole job has needed a lot of planning and investigation to ensure all components are there to complete the build, it has been like a giant 4D jigsaw with no picture.

Few shots of progress
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#26 Defalotus

 
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Posted 25 July 2012 - 03:48 AM

Looks good. Cant wait to see the finished greenhouse. Looks like it will be a special one. Thanks for sharing pics!

#27 manders

 
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Posted 25 July 2012 - 11:25 AM

Its very impressive Matt, dont envy you the effort you must be putting in but i'm sure the end results will be fantastic.

#28 Dicon

 
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Posted 26 July 2012 - 21:55 PM

Good progress today, just hope the weather holds off for a few days

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#29 Defalotus

 
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Posted 26 July 2012 - 22:53 PM

Thats going to look great! Nice job!

#30 Gareth Davies

 
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Posted 06 August 2012 - 08:50 AM

Now, that's an awesome greenhouse... a bit like mine, but bigger and better in every way.
Very impressive, and I know from experience how much work goes into one of these greenhouses, and how this summer has been a particularly demoralising time to be trying to work on a project like this. I'm just thinking how happy we're going to be on cold winter days in our hothouses...

#31 Dicon

 
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Posted 06 August 2012 - 21:56 PM

Got the easy bits of polycarb on in a couple of days, just the rooflights to make up and fit, I have had to invent new flashings to make them stormproof, the openers are about 7ft x 4ft each x4.
I arranged for a mate to come and help me fit them one afternoon and thought it would take about an hour or so to make up each unit prior to fitting so started on the first of 4 at about 8am.................how wrong was I
Finished the first one at 15:30 Ok it was a very steep learning curve and the others went a bit quicker and by 23:30 I had all but finished the last one !
By now it was also clear that me and one mate were never going to fit these alone, so called in some extra help and five of us fitted them in an hour and change, and yes they fitted....Phew!

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One of the major problems has been the transition from a design built around 4mm glass to upgrading to 25mm polycarb. Every adjustment moves the problem on so you have to try and cover every forward base before you get there and it makes progress frustratingly slow.
A change at the ridge moves a problem to the gutterline. A change of glazing thickness above a pivot changes a turning moment and this in turn affects a flashing and makes it impossible to fix a standard hinge, etc, etc.

Anyhow, I did my best to design a suitable ridge cap and under flashing, in powder-coated aluminium, to allow the redesigned (though yet to be made) roof vents to function properly, and I have to say I am relieved that it all appears to have gone to plan.

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Next step is to divide up the interior......seems like a bit of a shame really as it is a fantastic space.
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#32 pyro_hyde

 
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Posted 15 September 2012 - 02:40 AM

That is flipping amazing well done

#33 Alexis

 
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Posted 15 September 2012 - 11:20 AM

I think that transcends a greenhouse and would be described as a glasshouse!

#34 Ian Salter

 
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Posted 15 September 2012 - 14:20 PM

I think that transcends a greenhouse and would be described as a glasshouse!


I would have just stuck with house. it's about the same ground area of our little home.
Brilliant work Dicon.

#35 dyzio

 
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Posted 19 September 2012 - 17:54 PM

How is your progress now?

#36 Dicon

 
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Posted 19 September 2012 - 23:57 PM

Hi All,

It’s been a busy time devising and erecting the partitions.

There are 2 internal partitions giving a 6ft x 16ft cold section, a 8.5ft x 16ft lowland section and a 13.5ft x 16ft highland section

I have used 25mm multiwall polycarb again with pressure treated timber framing at low level and aluminium F section to perimeters, this makes a good neat finish and allows for thermal expansion.

I have used a kind of curtain wall glazing principal that sandwiches the glazing between 2 sections of timber with an EDPM gasket. Again this allows for movement and simple individual sections of timber can be easily removed/replaced if needed without dismantling the whole framework.

I had a couple of big double glazing units left over from my sunroom project (supplier error) they are argon filled thermal units so I decided to make use of these, they help make the two sections (highland and lowland) feel bigger as they are clear and improve internal light levels. Posted Image



I picked up a free uPVC door and frame from my local replacement windows firm, they just skip them so give them away. I have glazed this with polycarb too.

I had to box off the roof lights in the lowland section as they are so large, they straddle the partition between the lowland and cold (3rd) section. This was a bit complicated, but I have ended up with an isolated opener to both sections. I realised that these openers were too far off the ground to be opened easily so I decided to automate these with chain actuators………….these cost a bomb so I kept an eye on eBay for a couple of weeks and decided that if I could not get some cheap, that I would have to buy at least 2 new. Best new price was about £100 each so I set my price and lost out on about 3 auctions! I then spotted a listing that did not show up in the usual search description and picked up a job lot of 7 yes seven for about £125 Get in! So I now have automation for all the openers that can be linked to digital thermostats for accurate venting.

Having been at it for months now, I decided to take a break for a couple of weeks

Here

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I hurriedly set-up the lowland section so that the neighbour could water things for me. This all needs sorting out properly with more shelving, and a large hotbed on the floor for the big bicals etc. and the auto watering will follow when I have time.

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This is my water filtration system set up again. The big tank holds about 55gals and all fits neatly under the central 8 x 4ft bench. I will likely set a storage tank up in the lowland section too so that the sprinklers use warmer water to prevent shock. I have previously heated the pump feeder tank, but this is another cost I wish to avoid.

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Edited by Dicon, 20 September 2012 - 00:02 AM.


#37 dyzio

 
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Posted 20 September 2012 - 11:38 AM

Wow! Super awesome! It must have cost a fortune. I am dreaming about GH like that :)

#38 Dicon

 
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Posted 26 May 2013 - 22:12 PM

Time to update my greenhouse thread,
After a bit of a battle with the planners, (thanks to my knob-end neighbour) which eventually just added time and money to the project, I moved the plants in and have spent the past months shuffling things about and tuning the automation systems.
Light levels in the new greenhouse are very high compared to the old structure which means temperatures can soar quickly. I am trying to do without shading as the 25mm polycarb diffuses the light to a certain extent and the extra height of the roof aids temperature control.
I have extractor fans as before, these comes on at a given temperature triggered by a remote thermostat that also trips the window opener system, this requires 10 mins of high temps before opening the roof vents (so if the extractor can’t cope, the windows open too) they also close after 10 mins of inaction from the stat, whilst this reduces accuracy, it prevents the windows opening and closing constantly. I have had to add a wind speed detector too to protect from damage as the vents are quite large at 7ft x 4 ft and it can get a bit breezy here. Incoming air travels via external air bricks and along a few feet of tunnel in the base of the cavity wall. When kept damp this slightly cools the incoming air.
The aircon currently kicks in if needed at higher temps and the hot output pumps into the warm section.
Temperatures in the warm section seem to peak at about 40c which is higher than I would like for this time of year, as the weather has not exactly been summer like yet, a larger extractor or a thermal curtain is needed in here I think.
So, moving on to some more interesting stuff !
I have always wanted to show some of the plants off a bit better and whilst I still don’t really have the kind of space I would like, I have set up a “garden” on my central bench, this is an 8ft x 4ft heavy duty staging set to a slight fall with a layer of corrugated plastic roofing (micro profile) to direct water run off to one end, this allows use of the space under the bench without water constantly dripping from above.
I have “landscaped” with upturned plastic pots and capillary matting, then spread plenty of sphagnum moss and cork bark over to produce the desired effect. I spotted a nice oak branch on a tree on the edge of a field that was just getting clipped by the hedgerow cutter and decided that it might make a useful climbing frame in the landscape. So on a walk with the dog and a reciprocating saw, I dragged it back home and strung it up in position. I am not entirely happy with the result and may change it at a later date, but it will do for now!
(I need some live tillandsia if anyone has a good clump available?)
The Garden
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burb
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flava x sibuy (my own)
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lowii and burb upper
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jacquelineae upper
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Enormous bongo’s
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steno x burb, flava x sibuy and talang x rami
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aristolochioides x Medusa (another of my own)
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.
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Edited by Dicon, 26 May 2013 - 22:16 PM.


#39 manders

 
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Posted 26 May 2013 - 23:23 PM

Superb Matt, well done!

#40 Richard Bunn

 
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Posted 27 May 2013 - 00:08 AM

Impressive.