March 11, 2015

475 On-Site: Northern Timbers Construction

Boxy But Beautiful Airtight Cottage

After being totally blown away by some great conversations and great project visits in Vermont during the Better Buildings By Design Conference this February in Burlington, we were invited to stop to check out Alex Carver’s gorgeous, modern cottage project on Lake Champlain in Panton, Vermont, where he’s used Pro Clima and Lunos products to present arguably one of his – and our – favorite projects ever. We loved everything about it: the simplicity, aesthetic design, siting, and the perfectly-warm-bright-and-quiet-on-a-9-degree(F)-day interior, …the list goes on.

Alex uses what is becoming known as the Chris Corson wall – interior 2×4 stud wall, sheathing taped with TESCON VANA, exterior TJIs with dense packed cellulose, SOLITEX MENTO Plus, strapping, exterior cladding.  The corrugated metal siding completed the modern, BBB look; and the open web trusses hold the heavy Vermont snow, giving this house a beautiful one-story, high-ceiling simplicity. In the video, Alex explains some of the details and demonstrates how dry the cellulose remains in this vapor open assembly. This project is also a great example of our “Less Is Best” concept for XPS application – using it only as necessary at window frames, and as slab insulation. Be sure to check out the Northern Timbers Construction website for more.

The recipe for this project’s airtightness and ventilation:

  • SOLITEX MENTO Plus for exterior airtightness and vapor open WRB, reinforced for dense pack insulation
  • INTELLO Plus smart vapor retarder for interior airtightness on the ceiling
  • TESCON VANA for flat seams on airtight membranes, OSB sheathing, and at window connections
  • LUNOS e² and eGO for decentralized, ductless, heat recovery ventilation



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3 Responses to 475 On-Site: Northern Timbers Construction

  1. Geoff Summa April 9, 2015 at 10:37 am #

    Nice project. Interesting that the wall framing detail is getting recognition though I’m sure Corson was not the first to use it.
    It was a bit painful watching the WRB be sliced open in the video but for the sake of education and with the proper taping procedure I’ll let it go.

    Thanks for sharing

  2. Robert Connolly July 14, 2017 at 11:01 am #

    Handling cellulose in colder months really gives no indication of moisture content. Try March-April as that is
    when wall cavity would experience increased moisture as evidenced by testing done.
    18% to 22% on some test homes I’ve read about in NE.

  3. Floris July 14, 2017 at 11:45 am #

    Robert, we have data collected from I-joist walls in Climate zone 6 by Ecocor and it shows that cellulose at exterior, right behind SOLITEX MENTO Plus stays as dry as a bone – Material moisture content (WME) cycles between 7.8 and 10M%. The peak indeed occurs in early Spring, but since it goes from very dry to dry. The data shows these walls are very safe – form the monitored data and our WUFI Pro validations.

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