Are "A" frame home a good design or not?

Discussion in 'Home Power and Microgeneration' started by John, Sep 29, 2003.

  1. John

    John Guest

    As you all might know from some other posts...... Im
    looking for a simple, CHEAP, and fast way to build a
    home for one person with no kids.

    The ultimate goal is to build low cost enough to not
    have any mortgage at all..... or a very small one.

    Ive rented all my life and want to get out of the rent
    "game"

    Having said that..... what abt using structurally
    insulated panels (SIPs)...... to build a small A frame
    of say 800 sq feet?

    Are A frame designs a good "shape" or not? I realize
    you lose some interior space since the walls are
    angled..... but wont the "shape" of an A frame make for
    a VERY simple way to build a structure fast and cheap
    especially if using SIPs?

    I mean...... all you will need are 4 SIPs....... two
    for the A....... and two for the "ends" of the A.

    See link on simple 767 sq ft A frame... and what Im
    talking abt

    http://tinyurl.com/ozvl
    John, Sep 29, 2003
    #1
  2. John

    Richard W. Guest

    You can probably get a repoed manufactured house for under $30K that are
    about 1800 SF. The newer ones are R35 in the ceilings and 2 X 6 walls
    insulated to R30. The floors are also R30. Usually you have to clean them up
    and repair some dry wall. I bought a new one which I wouldn't do again
    because of the savings to be had on the repo's. Any way The house I left was
    about 800 SF and poorly insulated. The heat bill on the new manufactured
    house was less than the old house I had. So I did come out very well since
    the new house is set on 14 acres instead of a 75 by 125' lot.

    Richard W.

    "John" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > As you all might know from some other posts...... Im
    > looking for a simple, CHEAP, and fast way to build a
    > home for one person with no kids.
    >
    > The ultimate goal is to build low cost enough to not
    > have any mortgage at all..... or a very small one.
    >
    > Ive rented all my life and want to get out of the rent
    > "game"
    >
    > Having said that..... what abt using structurally
    > insulated panels (SIPs)...... to build a small A frame
    > of say 800 sq feet?
    >
    > Are A frame designs a good "shape" or not? I realize
    > you lose some interior space since the walls are
    > angled..... but wont the "shape" of an A frame make for
    > a VERY simple way to build a structure fast and cheap
    > especially if using SIPs?
    >
    > I mean...... all you will need are 4 SIPs....... two
    > for the A....... and two for the "ends" of the A.
    >
    > See link on simple 767 sq ft A frame... and what Im
    > talking abt
    >
    > http://tinyurl.com/ozvl
    Richard W., Sep 29, 2003
    #2
  3. John

    George Ghio Guest

    In article <>,
    John <> wrote:

    > As you all might know from some other posts...... Im
    > looking for a simple, CHEAP, and fast way to build a
    > home for one person with no kids.
    >
    > The ultimate goal is to build low cost enough to not
    > have any mortgage at all..... or a very small one.
    >
    > Ive rented all my life and want to get out of the rent
    > "game"
    >
    > Having said that..... what abt using structurally
    > insulated panels (SIPs)...... to build a small A frame
    > of say 800 sq feet?
    >
    > Are A frame designs a good "shape" or not? I realize
    > you lose some interior space since the walls are
    > angled..... but wont the "shape" of an A frame make for
    > a VERY simple way to build a structure fast and cheap
    > especially if using SIPs?
    >
    > I mean...... all you will need are 4 SIPs....... two
    > for the A....... and two for the "ends" of the A.
    >
    > See link on simple 767 sq ft A frame... and what Im
    > talking abt
    >
    > http://tinyurl.com/ozvl


    Once I looked at the A frame as a home. Didn't do it. I still like the
    idea. But the climate here would mean that in the summer you could not
    live in the upper part. Heat rises. Any sort of loft type house is much
    the same.

    If you have the right conditions and you can live with the limitations
    you have described it could work.

    George
    George Ghio, Sep 29, 2003
    #3
  4. John

    Guest

    George the feeble-minded boneheaded weasel <> wrote:

    >Once I looked at the A frame as a home. Didn't do it... in the summer you
    >could not live in the upper part. Heat rises.


    No, but warm air rises, and that could be a heating advantage in wintertime
    and a cooling advantage in summertime, especially in a dry climate, with
    night ventilation and lots of thermal mass in the lower and upper parts
    and good insulation, eg SIPs.

    Nick
    , Sep 29, 2003
    #4
  5. John

    John Guest

    An A frame is considered normal?

    More so than an earth bermed one?

    I mean.... you are more likely to get the banks
    "blessings" on an A frame than you are earth bermed?
    John, Sep 29, 2003
    #5
  6. John

    John Guest

    >Once I looked at the A frame as a home. Didn't do it. I still like the
    >idea. But the climate here would mean that in the summer you could not
    >live in the upper part. Heat rises. Any sort of loft type house is much
    >the same.
    >
    >If you have the right conditions and you can live with the limitations
    >you have described it could work.


    I live in north Missouri.... at the moment anyway. And
    we have definite four seasons. It can be cold as all
    get out here in winter

    Having said that I see your point.

    My attraction to the "A" design is the simplicity of
    the structure.... and that even a dummy like me MIGHT
    be able to erect one with some friends help....
    especially if using SIP panels.

    Right now Im just brain storming tho. Researching.
    Im open to the idea that an A frame MAY not be the best
    route.

    My "other" idea is to use ICF forms and poured concrete
    for a small concrete home. What abt that idea?
    John, Sep 29, 2003
    #6
  7. John

    Cosmopolite Guest

    John wrote:

    > >Once I looked at the A frame as a home. Didn't do it. I still like the
    > >idea. But the climate here would mean that in the summer you could not
    > >live in the upper part. Heat rises. Any sort of loft type house is much
    > >the same.
    > >
    > >If you have the right conditions and you can live with the limitations
    > >you have described it could work.

    >
    > I live in north Missouri.... at the moment anyway. And
    > we have definite four seasons. It can be cold as all
    > get out here in winter
    >
    > Having said that I see your point.
    >
    > My attraction to the "A" design is the simplicity of
    > the structure.... and that even a dummy like me MIGHT
    > be able to erect one with some friends help....
    > especially if using SIP panels.
    >
    > Right now Im just brain storming tho. Researching.
    > Im open to the idea that an A frame MAY not be the best
    > route.
    >
    > My "other" idea is to use ICF forms and poured concrete
    > for a small concrete home. What abt that idea?


    Look at geodesic domes.
    Cosmopolite, Sep 30, 2003
    #7
  8. John

    George Ghio Guest

    In article <bl9d06$>,
    wrote:

    > George the feeble-minded boneheaded weasel <> wrote:
    >
    > >Once I looked at the A frame as a home. Didn't do it... in the summer you
    > >could not live in the upper part. Heat rises.

    >
    > No, but warm air rises, and that could be a heating advantage in wintertime
    > and a cooling advantage in summertime, especially in a dry climate, with
    > night ventilation and lots of thermal mass in the lower and upper parts
    > and good insulation, eg SIPs.
    >
    > Nick
    >


    Wow Nick. What an informed post, right up there withe your best. You
    have no idea what the climate is like here where I live. You have also
    never built a house. On your own stick by stick.

    When it comes right down to it you can't even get water to run down hill
    without a laser level.

    No, an A frame house here is not a good idea. But they do make a great
    home for some places. That was the answer.

    My house will not change temp by more than 5 or 6 degrees over the
    course of a day. Needless to say it is not an A frame. It is though a
    lot of thermal mass and a minimum of insulation. Built for a climate
    where it can be over 40c all night. why should I want to drag that
    amount of heat through my house when 25c is much more comfortable.

    George
    George Ghio, Sep 30, 2003
    #8
  9. John

    John Guest

    >Here in Ontario you would. An A frame is a typical cottage in these
    >parts.


    So how do the people up there like them?
    John, Sep 30, 2003
    #9
  10. John

    John Guest

    >No, an A frame house here is not a good idea.

    Hey George Im curious..... where DO you live? What
    kind of clime?
    John, Sep 30, 2003
    #10
  11. John

    Bob Adkins Guest

    On Sun, 28 Sep 2003 21:31:51 -0500, John <> wrote:

    >As you all might know from some other posts...... Im
    >looking for a simple, CHEAP, and fast way to build a
    >home for one person with no kids.


    I always thought a metal building (like http://www.us-buildings.com/ ) would
    make a nice quickie house. My wife I built a 20x30 in 3 weeks of spare time.
    It was built as a tractor barn, but was almost too nice to put smelly
    equipment into.

    Simply build one (cheap, quick, and easy) then build conventional wooden
    framed rooms inside the building (well insulated!). Spray-on insulation
    inside the metal would make it even more energy-efficient.

    There is zero internal frames or bracing, so it's wide open. They are so
    tall that there is mega storage space in the top part.

    Bob
    Bob Adkins, Sep 30, 2003
    #11
  12. John

    John Guest

    >Simply build one (cheap, quick, and easy) then build conventional wooden
    >framed rooms inside the building (well insulated!). Spray-on insulation
    >inside the metal would make it even more energy-efficient.


    So basically build a building with a "building", right?
    John, Sep 30, 2003
    #12
  13. John

    Bob Adkins Guest

    On Tue, 30 Sep 2003 10:09:27 -0500, John <> wrote:

    >>Simply build one (cheap, quick, and easy) then build conventional wooden
    >>framed rooms inside the building (well insulated!). Spray-on insulation
    >>inside the metal would make it even more energy-efficient.

    >
    >So basically build a building with a "building", right?



    Right.

    The weather protection and strength are the cheap outer building. The inner
    rooms could be built inexpensively, and add-ons would be no sweat. Just
    think of the storage up there, and all of it usable.

    Bob
    Bob Adkins, Sep 30, 2003
    #13
  14. John

    APB Guest

    Where can I find repoed manufactured homes? I'll try a google search but
    any other ideas you know of would be appreciated. I'm in New Jersey, if
    that helps or matters.

    "Richard W." <> wrote in message
    news:bl8j53$m2c$...
    > You can probably get a repoed manufactured house for under $30K that are
    > about 1800 SF. The newer ones are R35 in the ceilings and 2 X 6 walls
    > insulated to R30. The floors are also R30. Usually you have to clean them

    up
    > and repair some dry wall. I bought a new one which I wouldn't do again
    > because of the savings to be had on the repo's. Any way The house I left

    was
    > about 800 SF and poorly insulated. The heat bill on the new manufactured
    > house was less than the old house I had. So I did come out very well since
    > the new house is set on 14 acres instead of a 75 by 125' lot.
    >
    > Richard W.
    >
    > "John" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    > > As you all might know from some other posts...... Im
    > > looking for a simple, CHEAP, and fast way to build a
    > > home for one person with no kids.
    > >
    > > The ultimate goal is to build low cost enough to not
    > > have any mortgage at all..... or a very small one.
    > >
    > > Ive rented all my life and want to get out of the rent
    > > "game"
    > >
    > > Having said that..... what abt using structurally
    > > insulated panels (SIPs)...... to build a small A frame
    > > of say 800 sq feet?
    > >
    > > Are A frame designs a good "shape" or not? I realize
    > > you lose some interior space since the walls are
    > > angled..... but wont the "shape" of an A frame make for
    > > a VERY simple way to build a structure fast and cheap
    > > especially if using SIPs?
    > >
    > > I mean...... all you will need are 4 SIPs....... two
    > > for the A....... and two for the "ends" of the A.
    > >
    > > See link on simple 767 sq ft A frame... and what Im
    > > talking abt
    > >
    > > http://tinyurl.com/ozvl

    >
    >
    APB, Sep 30, 2003
    #14
  15. John

    George Ghio Guest

    In article <>,
    John <> wrote:

    > >No, an A frame house here is not a good idea.

    >
    > Hey George Im curious..... where DO you live? What
    > kind of clime?


    Hi John

    I live in central Victoria, Australia near a town called Bealiba. I like
    it here. Most of the time it is much Like Southern California where I
    grew up.

    The last 5 years have been drought. The 3 years before that were drought.
    It gets hot here and no sea breeze. Still and all I own the place and
    lead a good lifestyle.

    Heating is no problem but cooling is the hard part. So I just built a
    house that does not get hot in summer and has bulk thermal mass and a
    large contra-flow masonary heater smack in the center of the house.

    George
    George Ghio, Oct 1, 2003
    #15
  16. John

    John Guest

    >Heating is no problem but cooling is the hard part. So I just built a
    >house that does not get hot in summer and has bulk thermal mass and a
    >large contra-flow masonary heater smack in the center of the house.


    Interesting George!!

    have any links to pictures of it?
    John, Oct 1, 2003
    #16
  17. John

    Richard W. Guest

    I looked in the news paper under manufactured homes. There is usually 1 or 2
    dealers near large cities that specialize in repos. I am between Portland
    and Salem Oregon, so I can't really tell you where to find them in your
    area.

    Richard W.


    "APB" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Where can I find repoed manufactured homes? I'll try a google search but
    > any other ideas you know of would be appreciated. I'm in New Jersey, if
    > that helps or matters.
    >
    > "Richard W." <> wrote in message
    > news:bl8j53$m2c$...
    > > You can probably get a repoed manufactured house for under $30K that are
    > > about 1800 SF. The newer ones are R35 in the ceilings and 2 X 6 walls
    > > insulated to R30. The floors are also R30. Usually you have to clean

    them
    > up
    > > and repair some dry wall. I bought a new one which I wouldn't do again
    > > because of the savings to be had on the repo's. Any way The house I left

    > was
    > > about 800 SF and poorly insulated. The heat bill on the new manufactured
    > > house was less than the old house I had. So I did come out very well

    since
    > > the new house is set on 14 acres instead of a 75 by 125' lot.
    > >
    > > Richard W.
    > >
    > > "John" <> wrote in message
    > > news:...
    > > > As you all might know from some other posts...... Im
    > > > looking for a simple, CHEAP, and fast way to build a
    > > > home for one person with no kids.
    > > >
    > > > The ultimate goal is to build low cost enough to not
    > > > have any mortgage at all..... or a very small one.
    > > >
    > > > Ive rented all my life and want to get out of the rent
    > > > "game"
    > > >
    > > > Having said that..... what abt using structurally
    > > > insulated panels (SIPs)...... to build a small A frame
    > > > of say 800 sq feet?
    > > >
    > > > Are A frame designs a good "shape" or not? I realize
    > > > you lose some interior space since the walls are
    > > > angled..... but wont the "shape" of an A frame make for
    > > > a VERY simple way to build a structure fast and cheap
    > > > especially if using SIPs?
    > > >
    > > > I mean...... all you will need are 4 SIPs....... two
    > > > for the A....... and two for the "ends" of the A.
    > > >
    > > > See link on simple 767 sq ft A frame... and what Im
    > > > talking abt
    > > >
    > > > http://tinyurl.com/ozvl

    > >
    > >

    >
    >
    Richard W., Oct 2, 2003
    #17
  18. John

    George Ghio Guest

    In article <>,
    John <> wrote:

    > >Heating is no problem but cooling is the hard part. So I just built a
    > >house that does not get hot in summer and has bulk thermal mass and a
    > >large contra-flow masonary heater smack in the center of the house.

    >
    > Interesting George!!
    >
    > have any links to pictures of it?


    No I'm sorry I do not have pics on line. The heater design came from The
    Maine Wood Co. in Maine.

    The house is stone, foot thick walls. The central room is 10 metres long
    x 5.5 metres wide. This room is flanked on both sides. One side is three
    bed rooms the other side is Kit, Dining, laundry, bath and toilet.

    The house is alinged North east South west to take advantage of the
    prevailing breezes and the lay of the land for Solar. The ideal would of
    course been N-S but because of the rising nature of the block and the
    number of trees it was found that by going NE-SW I could gain more Peak
    Sun hours /day.

    The over hang on the NW and SE sides is 2 metres. In the end the
    overhang on the NW side will have sliding shutters under laser light
    panels to allow more sun onto the floors in the bedrooms during winter
    and when shut keep the sun totaly away from the walls during summer.

    The walls between the centre room and the rooms on both sides are also
    foot thick stone and once warm can only loose heat to other rooms.

    George
    George Ghio, Oct 2, 2003
    #18
  19. John

    Guest

    >The walls between the centre room and the rooms on both sides are also
    >foot thick stone and once warm can only loose heat to other rooms.


    Wow George....sounds like fortress!!

    So your problem in your clime...is LOISNG heat..... not
    necessarily gaining heat. Right?

    See....I line in the midwest of the USA....and we have
    definite four season....and cold winters! lol

    I guess the design of the house really does depend on
    the clime you live in? No?

    So bottom line... there is no ONE design that would
    work equally well in a desert..... as it would say in
    the midwest or mountains?

    John
    , Oct 2, 2003
    #19
  20. John

    Guest

    >Well I have been living in one since 1985. True "A" all the way to the floor
    >joist. 35 ft. equlaterial triangle. 54 ft long. 4ft overhangs on each end. 3
    >floors.


    Where is it located Bill? Any pictures to share?
    Have a floor plan handy?

    Also what kind of roof material? Metal roof maybe?

    And what it stick built... or did you use SIPs?

    >Top floor is "toasty", bottom floor is cooler in summer. I bolted it together
    >so it is sturdy! Home built over several years. Still working on it! Geothermal
    >heat pumps.


    Do you use forced air heat..... or maybe radiant floor
    heat..... with the geothermal pumps?

    >I like it. What can I say. Unique construction trying to do finsh work inside.
    >You have to like angles!
    >
    >Bill



    True. But cant you fasten all your wall mountable stuff
    like kitchen cabinets and such on one of the two ends
    of the structure?

    John
    , Oct 2, 2003
    #20

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

It takes just 2 minutes to sign up (and it's free!). Just click the sign up button to choose a username and then you can ask your own questions on the forum.
Similar Threads
  1. Earl

    ADC30 Burr Brown free to good home

    Earl, Jul 22, 2004, in forum: General Electronics
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    290
  2. Dave Ryman

    Car power amplifiers - are they any good for home use?

    Dave Ryman, Jan 11, 2004, in forum: Electronic Design
    Replies:
    8
    Views:
    289
    Dave Ryman
    Jan 13, 2004
  3. moneymaker

    home remodeling home construction

    moneymaker, Jul 17, 2007, in forum: Electronic Repair
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    309
    moneymaker
    Jul 17, 2007
  4. Soren

    Home Speech recognition for Home Automation

    Soren, Sep 9, 2007, in forum: Electronic Design
    Replies:
    8
    Views:
    693
    Gary Tait
    Sep 10, 2007
  5. rory

    Home Theatre System & Home Automation

    rory, Apr 20, 2004, in forum: Security Alarms
    Replies:
    3
    Views:
    337
Loading...

Share This Page