Building A SIP Home

 
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Old 02-11-2008, 08:31 AM   #1
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Building A SIP Home


Greetings,

I'm purchasing a SIP home. I'll be doing all electrical and plumbing. Does anyone know what I'm getting into? 1.5x as long labor 3x ??? Were going over the basic electrical and a little over on plumbing. Just wondering in reality is it as easy as they say or not.

Thanks in advance
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Old 12-24-2008, 02:47 AM   #2
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Re: Building A SIP Home


its all in the planning, electrical has to be pulled straight up vs the traditional horizontal, i believe the plumbing has to be done the same way. check out sips.org

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Old 02-11-2009, 12:53 PM   #3
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Re: Building A SIP Home


For one the panels are not necessarily light at all. Make sure you have some help with some 'grunt'. Who ever is installing the panels needs to make sure that every spline / 2x6 that is connecting the panels together has the correct sized holes drilled out where the electrical chases are located in the middle of the panels. When I was installing panels I found that using a 2" arbor bit was the best bet, this way the hole will be a little over sized which will help prevent your snake from getting caught on the edges of the breaks between panels.

I found that it took our electrician 2x as long to pull his wires in the sips panels on his first house. Once he got the knack of it, he got a little quicker. He also sort of rerouted some wires a little differently to save him time in labor. You can't just drill your studs, run your wires and mount your box on the best looking stud. You got to locate your box, cut it out, run your snake, connect the wire, pull the snake then mount the box. If you have to change directions (ie going from a horizontal chase to a vertical chase) you can simply cut out up to a 6" square in the location of the chase intersections to reroute the wires.

The horizontal chases in the panels are 16" & 44" up from the bottom of the panels for electrical outlets and switches. The Vertical chases in the panels are spaced 24" o.c.

The most PITA part of sips panels is having the framers forget to drill out the chases. I know of a framer who put up a sips house for a client of ours and he totally forgot to drill out the splines/plates. He was stoked on how quick it went together...then he got the charge back from the electrician/HO....
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Old 06-21-2009, 09:36 PM   #4
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Re: Building A SIP Home


Quote:
Originally Posted by ContractorPete View Post
For one the panels are not necessarily light at all. Make sure you have some help with some 'grunt'. Who ever is installing the panels needs to make sure that every spline / 2x6 that is connecting the panels together has the correct sized holes drilled out where the electrical chases are located in the middle of the panels. When I was installing panels I found that using a 2" arbor bit was the best bet, this way the hole will be a little over sized which will help prevent your snake from getting caught on the edges of the breaks between panels.

I found that it took our electrician 2x as long to pull his wires in the sips panels on his first house. Once he got the knack of it, he got a little quicker. He also sort of rerouted some wires a little differently to save him time in labor. You can't just drill your studs, run your wires and mount your box on the best looking stud. You got to locate your box, cut it out, run your snake, connect the wire, pull the snake then mount the box. If you have to change directions (ie going from a horizontal chase to a vertical chase) you can simply cut out up to a 6" square in the location of the chase intersections to reroute the wires.

The horizontal chases in the panels are 16" & 44" up from the bottom of the panels for electrical outlets and switches. The Vertical chases in the panels are spaced 24" o.c.

The most PITA part of sips panels is having the framers forget to drill out the chases. I know of a framer who put up a sips house for a client of ours and he totally forgot to drill out the splines/plates. He was stoked on how quick it went together...then he got the charge back from the electrician/HO....
this is very professional answer for you
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Old 07-30-2009, 07:58 PM   #5
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Re: Building A SIP Home


Quote:
Originally Posted by ContractorPete View Post
For one the panels are not necessarily light at all. Make sure you have some help with some 'grunt'. Who ever is installing the panels needs to make sure that every spline / 2x6 that is connecting the panels together has the correct sized holes drilled out where the electrical chases are located in the middle of the panels. When I was installing panels I found that using a 2" arbor bit was the best bet, this way the hole will be a little over sized which will help prevent your snake from getting caught on the edges of the breaks between panels.

I found that it took our electrician 2x as long to pull his wires in the sips panels on his first house. Once he got the knack of it, he got a little quicker. He also sort of rerouted some wires a little differently to save him time in labor. You can't just drill your studs, run your wires and mount your box on the best looking stud. You got to locate your box, cut it out, run your snake, connect the wire, pull the snake then mount the box. If you have to change directions (ie going from a horizontal chase to a vertical chase) you can simply cut out up to a 6" square in the location of the chase intersections to reroute the wires.

The horizontal chases in the panels are 16" & 44" up from the bottom of the panels for electrical outlets and switches. The Vertical chases in the panels are spaced 24" o.c.

The most PITA part of sips panels is having the framers forget to drill out the chases. I know of a framer who put up a sips house for a client of ours and he totally forgot to drill out the splines/plates. He was stoked on how quick it went together...then he got the charge back from the electrician/HO....
Just a framer's perspective...if I have to drill for someone else's trade - "they best be payin me matie" Or they are welcome to be there all day when I am installing to "do there thing". I don't do anything other than make sure my stuff is correct for the next trade. Too often, when I would try and "think ahead" for a guy....he would come along and not even use what I had done. No mas.

Electricians drill their own holes. Plumbers are good at that too.
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Old 07-30-2009, 08:20 PM   #6
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Re: Building A SIP Home


that seems reasonable to me
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Old 07-30-2009, 09:31 PM   #7
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Re: Building A SIP Home


One story or two story? Makes a big difference. When we do a single story we don't worry much about chases and such. What we do is cut the panel for the box and then we use a flexible drill bit to drill down through the foam and the bottom plate and into the basement. From there we wire normally. For switches you need to do a little planning. Two stories takes a little planning but most of the time we do it the same way and just drill into the 2nd floor structure. If it is your first time just give it some thought and ask questions or better yet find someone who does sips and see if they will give you an hour of explanation or better yet spend an hour on site. Contrary to what alot of people say we find that on most jobs we can do wiring and plumbing in about the same time as we would in stick built.

As far as weight sips are heavy but with lifting hooks and a crane I can assemble most panels up to 8ft x 24ft with one other helper. More complex structures may take another helper but if your panel supplier did their job they are pretty straight forward. Plus we site cut alot of our panels so we know how they work.

Just as an aside, I have partnered with another sips guy and we are starting a new home building company doing only sips homes in Northern Il and Southern WI, We will be building a demo project in the spring going for a LEEDs Gold certification. I will post on the progress and if anyone has any sips questions I will be happy to answer what I can.
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Old 08-21-2009, 04:16 AM   #8
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Re: Building A SIP Home


okay
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Old 12-15-2009, 07:12 PM   #9
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Re: Building A SIP Home


I've got some extensive experience in sips homes, love em with the right crew. A sky-trak is worth the money on site. For your plumbing, sometimes it's best to fir out the wall, for the electrical i hope you use a good company, I'd suggest insulspan. Any specifics I can help you with, just ask.
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Old 12-15-2009, 07:52 PM   #10
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Re: Building A SIP Home


What about using SIPS to add a second story? And in Chicago, would it be hard to run conduit through them?
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Old 12-15-2009, 08:53 PM   #11
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Re: Building A SIP Home


I'm working on my first sip home as a carpenter...we've been drilling all the holes in our 2x6 splices as well as top and bottom plates....And around outside corners!

Luckily, for our first experience, the floor plan is as simple as it can get. I imagine the electric rough in will be tedious, more because of inexperience than the job itself.

I would say 2x, more because of materials to be a little more creative.... but, less drilling and stapling...laying out boxes on osb and cuttin holes and fishing wires.

I specifically asked our sip rep about a wall sconce not located on a wire chase....he said...seriously!....cut out the hole for your box....torch a steel ball and drop it in the wall so it will melt down to the chase

Plumbing...well, I don't know a lot, but I was under the impression nothing should be in the outside walls anyway....

Sorry for the BS post...I'm also very curious how things will go.

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