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Installing the Chimney

November 15, 2012 |

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We are DIYing our moms a Duplex in Alaska! Check out our progress so far as we owner build a home, step by step. Read the Momplex blog here.

posted by Ana White

Well, it's that time again.

Time to start cutting holes in the Momplex, and blocking off wasted square footage behind walls.

At least this time, we've got a pretty good reason.

We are creating a secret escape passage.

That once a year can be used by a strange man in the middle of the night to climb down into your house while you are sleeping.

Yep, it's chimney time! That smoke's gotta escape somehow!

Installing the Chimney

We've tackled alot of projects. And there's certainly been alot of googling and youtubing and we even have code books stacked up inside the Momplex for referencing.

But this is one of the first times I've seen instruction manuals come with building materials.

Installing the Chimney

They say cut a big hole in the floor.

Installing the Chimney

We cut a big hole in the floor.

Installing the Chimney

Hello down there!

Would make a great laundry chute ... if the laundry was not already upstairs.

Installing the Chimney

Then we build an H shaped thing out of wood.

Installing the Chimney

And it get's placed in the ceiling.

We actually put one of these in the floor too.

Installing the Chimney

See it? The pipe will go up through these two squares and through the roof.

Installing the Chimney

The hole is only drilled in one side of the Momplex because we decided that we are only putting one boiler in. Both units have to be heated all the time. If one unit froze up, it would freeze water lines on both sides.

Not only does sharing a boiler save a ton of money, it saves a ton of space. The chimney takes up a side of the smaller bedroom closet.

Installing the Chimney

It gets framed off - and there's nothing we can do about the wasted space on either side.

Installing the Chimney

The closet is still plenty big - bigger than any closet in my house! And this is the guest bedroom, so we aren't too stressed about the lost space.

Fairest way to decide which unit goes to which mom?

We'll have to do a grandkid count.

Siblings, better get busy.

We don't count. Our kids belong to both grandmas.

Installing the Chimney

Now that we've got our chimney placement, it's time to start putting the pieces in. It's kind of like a jigsaw puzzle where you do the outsides first and fill in inbetween.

Here's the top where it goes through the upstairs ceiling.

Installing the Chimney

And the basement top. We had to drywall this one because the ceiling is exposed here.

Installing the Chimney

Now those in between pieces .... hmmmm ...

Installing the Chimney

Oh, right! There's a manual with this installation!

Installing the Chimney

Okay, that goes there ... but wait a second, it just sits in there?

Somethin's not right here ....

Now that's better ...

This piece actually goes in in the event of fire.  Ashes would drip in this tray, and give you a little more time before the floor catches on fire.  Not that that's ever going to happen, but just in case.

And now we can start putting the pipes together.

The pipes just get stacked on top of each other.

Each joint gets a special ring that is screwed tight to keep the pipes together.

And then up through the ceiling collar it goes

And then out the roof.

And above the roof.

For something designed to keep a house warm, of course it needs a hat and boot.

The temperatures are dropping pretty fast up here in Alaska, with some nights as cold as -30 degrees below zero, without wind chill.  It's pretty comforting to know that when we put a heat source in, the chimney's there to take the smoke away.

With the chimney in ... are we really down to just putting vapor barrier up, hanging the upstairs ceiling drywall, and blowing insulation in?  Is it really happening????

YAY!

It won't be long... You and your family have come such a long way with so much hard work. I'm sure you are beyond excited to know that soon you will have heat and then before you know it, you will all be working on the finishing touches! We are so blessed to be able to share in the excitement with you, even if it's long distance! Keep up the great work! What a great testiment of love!


posted by spiceylg | on Thu, 2012-11-15 15:37
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Ana White's picture

Hi spiceylg! We are!!!! It

Hi spiceylg! We are!!!! It is so exciting to be working inside. ... All I can think about is the furnishings and finishes though! Thanks for sticking with us through the building process! It's been millions times better to share our progress with you and everyone else! Many thanks, Ana

posted by Ana White | on Thu, 2012-11-15 23:15

WOW

Many homeowners express their regret that they did not take more time and spend more money on their fireplace. I really amazed your hard work here...you did a good job.

posted by Maxie Sykes (not verified) | on Thu, 2012-11-15 20:44
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Ana White's picture

Hi Maxie! Thanks! We threw

Hi Maxie! Thanks! We threw in the floor protector pan and braces at $28 a piece (no picture but we secured pipes to walls too) and it was no fun spending the extra money and time, but if it means a safer home for mom, or at least no smoke, it's worth it in the long run! Thank you so much!

posted by Ana White | on Thu, 2012-11-15 23:21

This is such an exiting and

This is such an exiting and inspiring project, unbelievable how much you've allready achieved! Your moms must be so proud of their hard working children!

Just read ALL your posts on the momplex. Couldn't stop reading, it's so addictive to see how much progress you are making. Now I can't wait untill the next update :#

posted by Irene (not verified) | on Fri, 2012-11-16 04:59
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Ana White's picture

Thank you Irene! We can

Thank you Irene! We can hardly believe it's come so far too! Wow, thank you for reading all of the posts! I know we've got quite a few done - and can't wait to post the rest! Thank you!

posted by Ana White | on Fri, 2012-11-16 16:35

Closet space

I'm so excited to see the continued progress on the momplex. You guys do amazing things and I can't wait to see the inside come together!
Living in a small house with inadequate storage, I know what a bummer it is to have wasted space. I have no authority on the subject of building, just a creative mind, so I may be way off with this idea. I was just wondering if it would be possible to have built-in shelves on either side of the chimney in the closet. I'm not sure if I'm looking at the picture right, but it looks like it could work.

posted by Shelbee (not verified) | on Fri, 2012-11-16 16:03
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Ana White's picture

I hear you on the small house

I hear you on the small house with not enough storage! We have the same issue!

I love your idea of the built ins on either side of the chimney. We definitely considered, but by the time we frame in the walls per code and drywall, it wouldn't be much storage left :( Thankfully, this is just the guest closet, and it's a huge closet already! Sometimes, you just gotta lose one for the bigger picture!

Thanks for reading! Ana

posted by Ana White | on Fri, 2012-11-16 16:37

wasted space

Can you make those two little areas into small built in shelving for storing extra towels or bedsheets, etc?

posted by Ivy T (not verified) | on Fri, 2012-11-16 16:43

Fantastic - progress in spite of frreeezzziinngg!

I so look forward to your updates on the Momplex! I can't wait to see all of your ingenious designs for the interior!

posted by Brenna Marie (not verified) | on Fri, 2012-11-16 19:19

ana, whenever i think i have

ana, whenever i think i have too many miles to go before i sleep, i think of you and this project. it really is an inspiration, thank you. happy thanksgiving to you and yours.

and, as always, i am electrified by your step by step process blogs. don't ever stop.

posted by jeannette (not verified) | on Mon, 2012-11-19 12:30

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