Gallery/timeline - click on image to enlarge and for slideshow

Our (on site) home for the duration of the build

Our (on site) home for the duration of the build

The empty site, looking up from the south

The empty site, looking up from the south

Same view, looking up from the south, with artist's impression of the finished house

Same view, looking up from the south, with artist's impression of the finished house

JULY-SEPT 2018: GROUNDWORKS AND SITE PREPARATION

JULY-SEPT 2018: GROUNDWORKS AND SITE PREPARATION

First topsoil layer removed; Mike looking, and feeling, very small at the start of a very big project

First topsoil layer removed; Mike looking, and feeling, very small at the start of a very big project

Topsoil set aside until later - will be used as soil for the green roof

Topsoil set aside until later - will be used as soil for the green roof

Cutting and marking out foundations: lower floor and earth-retaining wall

Cutting and marking out foundations: lower floor and earth-retaining wall

No rotten rock found on site, so the search begins to find some (required as base layer under foundations)

No rotten rock found on site, so the search begins to find some (required as base layer under foundations)

Making the road to the rotten rock supply on the croft

Making the road to the rotten rock supply on the croft

Temporary widened access road created in front of bungalow to accommodate large lorries

Temporary widened access road created in front of bungalow to accommodate large lorries

New car park created for bungalow and site vehicles

New car park created for bungalow and site vehicles

Creating the new driveway

Creating the new driveway

New driveway ready to receive site traffic

New driveway ready to receive site traffic

SEPT-NOV 2018: EARTH-RETAINING WALL AND LOWER FLOOR FOUNDATIONS

SEPT-NOV 2018: EARTH-RETAINING WALL AND LOWER FLOOR FOUNDATIONS

Mike in front of the shuttering for the earth-retaining wall

Mike in front of the shuttering for the earth-retaining wall

A digger transferring wet concrete from the lorry to the shuttering

A digger transferring wet concrete from the lorry to the shuttering

View from above after concrete poured into shuttering

View from above after concrete poured into shuttering

Shuttering removed from earth-retaining wall

Shuttering removed from earth-retaining wall

Earth-retaining wall is 'tanked', or waterproofed; work begins on lower-floor walls

Earth-retaining wall is 'tanked', or waterproofed; work begins on lower-floor walls

Meanwhile... a large delivery of insulation arrives

Meanwhile... a large delivery of insulation arrives

MVHR system is delivered and stored in former cow byre

MVHR system is delivered and stored in former cow byre

Mike and Roddy install a new sheep-retaining gate and fence

Mike and Roddy install a new sheep-retaining gate and fence

Lower ground floor underfloor insulation is installed

Lower ground floor underfloor insulation is installed

Lower ground underfloor insulation

Lower ground underfloor insulation

A blinding layer sits beneath the underfloor insulation; ducts for electrical supplies, water and waste are in place

A blinding layer sits beneath the underfloor insulation; ducts for electrical supplies, water and waste are in place

A layer of waterproofing material sits on top of the insulation; water and waste pipes are insulated to avoid thermal bridging (one of many ways heat can escape from a building)

A layer of waterproofing material sits on top of the insulation; water and waste pipes are insulated to avoid thermal bridging (one of many ways heat can escape from a building)

It's November now, with fewer daylight hours, so the concrete pour has to continue after dark

It's November now, with fewer daylight hours, so the concrete pour has to continue after dark

A vibrating poker is used to remove air bubbles from the newly poured concrete

A vibrating poker is used to remove air bubbles from the newly poured concrete

The lower ground floor the day after the concrete pour

The lower ground floor the day after the concrete pour

Mike sanding the door to the former cow byre. A useful storage space, it doubles as the site office/tea room

Mike sanding the door to the former cow byre. A useful storage space, it doubles as the site office/tea room

Planting a mixed hedge to provide a natural barrier between old and new properties

Planting a mixed hedge to provide a natural barrier between old and new properties

Painting the repaired cow byre door; neon orange mistake being tamed by a more sedate green

Painting the repaired cow byre door; neon orange mistake being tamed by a more sedate green

NOV-DEC 2018 STEEL, UPPER FLOOR FOUNDATIONS, LOWER FLOOR WALLS - Steel sections arrive

NOV-DEC 2018 STEEL, UPPER FLOOR FOUNDATIONS, LOWER FLOOR WALLS - Steel sections arrive

Scaffolding starts to go up ready for steel installation; upper ground floor foundations prepared

Scaffolding starts to go up ready for steel installation; upper ground floor foundations prepared

A tele handler lifts the largest of the structural steel sections into place

A tele handler lifts the largest of the structural steel sections into place

The steel forms part of the support structure for the roof

The steel forms part of the support structure for the roof

The steel sections also take the weight of the blocks above the large south and west-facing windows

The steel sections also take the weight of the blocks above the large south and west-facing windows

Mike watches the steel installation from what will be the kitchen end of the open-plan living area

Mike watches the steel installation from what will be the kitchen end of the open-plan living area

Viewed from the Scorrybreac Path above, the steel is an impressive sight

Viewed from the Scorrybreac Path above, the steel is an impressive sight

Final prep for the kitchen concrete pour: a steel reinforcement grid sits above a waterproof layer on top of insulation

Final prep for the kitchen concrete pour: a steel reinforcement grid sits above a waterproof layer on top of insulation

Before the concrete is poured, flexible ducting is installed for electrical wiring and drainage for the kitchen sink

Before the concrete is poured, flexible ducting is installed for electrical wiring and drainage for the kitchen sink

Mike surveys the finished floor

Mike surveys the finished floor

Mike stands on top of a pile of concrete beams, which will form the rest of the upper ground floor

Mike stands on top of a pile of concrete beams, which will form the rest of the upper ground floor

As the lower floor starts to take shape, work ceases on site for the Christmas break

As the lower floor starts to take shape, work ceases on site for the Christmas break

Viewed from the north-west corner, the inner block walls are almost complete

Viewed from the north-west corner, the inner block walls are almost complete

A view along what will be the south-facing wall cavity. Metal wall ties are commonly used to 'tie together' the inner and outer block walls, which conduct heat out of the building and cold in. In a passivhaus these are made of a non-conductive material

A view along what will be the south-facing wall cavity. Metal wall ties are commonly used to 'tie together' the inner and outer block walls, which conduct heat out of the building and cold in. In a passivhaus these are made of a non-conductive material

DEC 2018-JAN 2019 Not everyone breaks for Christmas - Mike starts work on installing the ducts for the ventilation system

DEC 2018-JAN 2019 Not everyone breaks for Christmas - Mike starts work on installing the ducts for the ventilation system

The MVHR unit sits in the utility room, but has two penetrations to the outside: air intake and exhaust. First, holes must be made in the blockwork

The MVHR unit sits in the utility room, but has two penetrations to the outside: air intake and exhaust. First, holes must be made in the blockwork

With the ducts in place they can now be packed around with insulation to stop them becoming cold bridges

With the ducts in place they can now be packed around with insulation to stop them becoming cold bridges

Everything must be measured carefully so that the ducts marry up with the holes in the top of the MVHR unit

Everything must be measured carefully so that the ducts marry up with the holes in the top of the MVHR unit

These are left covered until the building work is finished. They will be just below ground level, but will be connected to more ducting which will lead to an air intake tower and  exhaust vent above ground

These are left covered until the building work is finished. They will be just below ground level, but will be connected to more ducting which will lead to an air intake tower and exhaust vent above ground

JAN 2019 - Snow contributes to a delay to work restarting after Christmas

JAN 2019 - Snow contributes to a delay to work restarting after Christmas

There are always plenty of side projects to occupy Mike if he's not working on site - such as constructing the wiring for the doorbell

There are always plenty of side projects to occupy Mike if he's not working on site - such as constructing the wiring for the doorbell

FEB 2019: LOWER GROUND INTERNAL WALLS, EXTERNAL WALLS AND CHANNELLING FOR ELECTRICS

FEB 2019: LOWER GROUND INTERNAL WALLS, EXTERNAL WALLS AND CHANNELLING FOR ELECTRICS

Lower ground wall construction continues: bedrooms, Mike's studio, hallway and utility room

Lower ground wall construction continues: bedrooms, Mike's studio, hallway and utility room

Looking across the utility room towards the bedrooms

Looking across the utility room towards the bedrooms

One of the two south-facing bedrooms

One of the two south-facing bedrooms

Utility room: MVHR air ducts in position and protected ready for unit to be installed later

Utility room: MVHR air ducts in position and protected ready for unit to be installed later

First indication of the view we'll have from the main living area

First indication of the view we'll have from the main living area

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