Barn Rescue 


Why bother.  Because it's there.  It's a fixture in the landscape.  It's even more trouble to demolish, remember, it's all DIY as I'm marginally employed.  Demolition isn't just  pushing iit over and setting it afire.  Shiingles are near to hazardous waste, the thousand nails would lace the area with spikes for decades,.  The half collapsed half burnt rubble would be a hazard to anyone who got in it., and  it being right on the road, pretty sure the local building inspecttors would eventually feel compelled to fine me. 


Not only that, there's alot that can be done with it.  I'm thinking a summer time eco - studio.   It's nice an cool by the stream.  No cesspool this close to the stream so a composting toilet.  Water will be scarce, so well, I"ll probably collect rain water and use bottled water, from my own spring across the road, for drinking.  Huge potential.


The pond went 20 years without maint.  As I started to dig my way into the barn, I realized it's been more like 30 or 40 years since the barn saw anything but abuse.  It  had  dirt, rock, construction materials, tree trunks from house rebuild when the folks rebuilt the house for their retiremnent.  I dug out one side a few years ago to make a runoff channel when I realized runoff from the highway was washing out the foundatiosn and pushing the barn down into the stream.  


So far just braced up under a  car my brother was saving for a rebuild someday, and the side beam that got buried rotted out, tree fell through the roof,.....   He was able to pull the car out, I hope not too the worse for wear.  I'm hoping that extension stays up until December, because I can't stop the insulation, garage vestibule / ramp, and guest suite rebuild until then.



Well, that marginal employment, and still happy to have that job, won't allow me to go full steam ahead on the GSHP, which in my case is more water source heat pump.  So, I work in what I can afford and do myself for now.


What low cost work can I do on a sophisticated Ground Source Heat Pump system.  Especially in Upstate New York, deep in the Catskill Mountains, a pile of rocks and gravel that make a great aquifer for the NYC water supply, but a hard place to dig a hole (and you need a big hole to bury all the HDPE tubing you need for GSHP).


This is the Do It Yourself Ground Source Heat Pump (DIYGSHP?) work I can do:


  • Trench out to bury the suuply lines from spring to pond, where the GSHP coils will be sunk.  Yes, many rocks, but I can use the 20 gpm plus from the spring to wash out the trench (capturing the soil for backfill, and to fill in hollows around the grounds).
  • Add a second 20 gpm plus feed line from the spring to the pond and it's GSHP coils. 
  • That will give a flow rate at the pond to a max of 50 - 60 gpm.  That way even at a delta T of  5 degrees per gallon on the spring water in the dead of a winter with no snow cover, they'll still be plenty of BTUs for the Heat Pump to harvest. 


Just getting the tubing a few inches below grade makes a HUGE difference.  They won't freeze up even without snow cover.  I know this not from codes and won't be sued if I over do it standards of practice, but because, we've been here 70 years, we know what works and dosen't.  Also, I'll run the lines along the edge of the lawn and forest, so I can and will continually build up an insulating mulch of grass trimmings and leaves over the lines.  The way mother nature over produces in the Catskills, in 10 yrs those lines will have another 12 inches of dirt created from all that grass and leaves.

Livability Enhancement

Garage vestibule and Ramp

This will eliminate icy steps in winter and make rolling the shopping cart used to get everything in and out much easer.  Every slip, every strain saved is one less potential injury and all the problems and complications those entail.

Out goes the decorative stone wall, in goes the concrete footing.  The PT 4x4's are tied in with hammered in spikes entangled in mesh - or I as I call it, re-purposed hog fence.  The top of the walls will be flush with deck level.  The ramp will go inside the garage, the vestibule will extend over the walk, the steps moved adjacent to garage.  As always built as a rapid prototype, with functionality rolled out prior to completion - and with no temp work to be reworked in later phases.