Construction

The Cottages at Fall Creek Crossing

We are thrilled to announce the release of our new website for The Cottages at Fall Creek Crossing (at www.cottagesatfallcreek.com) formerly known as Varna Tiny Timber. These homes are now officially on the market and ready to be sold! I urge anyone who is interested to peruse the new site and the listings posted on Brent Katzmann's Warren Real Estate page. We are very excited about what we have put together and hope you like it as well.  Thank you to those who have been waiting patiently for this news. It turns out that site plan and storm water management take a bit of time to iron out.

We have also significantly updated our model selection. Take a look! We added a few new models and phased out models that we don't think work as well. The "Models" tab has been changed to "Example Models" because the list of models is an ever evolving list. We don't want to give the impression that we are restrictive with model options and interior layout.

To be honest, the naming of models has become surprisingly difficult. We want to keep things as straightforward as possible in the way that our model options are organized and separated into series. There has been so much design overlap that it is difficult to categorize what we have. The easy thing to do would be to name our models arbitrary names like "The Charlotte." I'm not too fond of the idea but there are only so many iterations of cube names that we can come up with. It does make me very happy that we have a model named "Cuboid." It sounds like an 80's arcade game character.

We have posted two new galleries of completed homes on the Tiny Timber website. You can view them HERE. We are proud of the craftsmanship of our crew and the finishes on Tiny Timber homes continue to get better and more refined. I continue to be impressed by the way that our stairs are coming out. The big wooden homemade block treads, homemade railings, steel spindles, and steel stringers all come together so nicely. In the words of our fearless leader Buzz, "dude, these are cool."

There are a couple of new building methods that are also worth mentioning. Firstly, we have started doing our basement ceilings a little differently. Instead of using traditional floor joists and dry-walling the basement ceiling, we have started using rough cut hemlock beams with hemlock boards on top to create the same aesthetic as the ceiling on the first floor (see top right). Secondly, we have just started fabricating entire wall and roof sections in our mill (see bottom right). The wall sections will then be shipped to the job site to be assembled using picks and a crane. We are really excited about this change in method because we think (fingers crossed) that it will be much more efficient and save everyone time and headache. Our crew is pretty happy about it too because they get to work in the warm mill and not in the freezing cold out on the man lift. Win, win!

That's all for now. We here at Tiny Timber hope you all had a lovely holiday season!

First One Down, Two On The Way

At long last we have finished our first home! This new home is the L Large Lofted model (please view images below). There are a couple of new standard features that we tried for the first time in this home that we are very excited about. We were not happy with the way that our railings have turned out in the past, purchasing components from other vendors. So we decided to take matters into our own hands and built our own railings. They are made with half inch painted steel spindles with railings and posts that we hand milled from cherry logs that we harvested. We also used, and hope to use in the future wherever possible, barn doors for passage between rooms.

There were also a few customizations that we made to accommodate the client's particular needs. Firstly, a crawl space was built instead of a full basement because there was concern about ground water level. The home was built next to a pond. This meant that there was no need for interior access to the basement. A Bilco door was instead used for basement access and the client opted for split tread stair access to the loft in order to save floor space. For those who aren't familiar with split tread stairs please view the image below. They are twice as steep as traditional stairs and look like a fancy fire escape. Secondly, instead of having a blind corner cabinet in the kitchen, they decided to put a drawer cabinet facing the other way into the adjoined bedroom for bedroom storage. Thirdly, they decided to utilize the "dead space" above the bathroom (which is essentially attic space with very low ceilings) by adding flooring, lighting, a triangular window and a barn door to create a "fort" area for the kids. I must admit, as a 29 year old I am still a little jealous.

We are proud of what we have accomplished and work to continue to raise the bar for the quality of each new home. Frankly, I think this new home makes our office look a little drab by comparison. In the wise words of Buzz, "never make your mock-up as good as your finished product because you want to pleasantly surprise your clients."

For a full set of images please visit our new Galleries Page on our website.

We are currently in the process of building two more homes, one in Enfield and one in Lansing, and we will begin another in the City of Ithaca in the next week or two. These homes will all be Big Cubes. The Big Cube seems to be our most popular model so far. Buzz insists that we need to make new Tiny Timber t-shirts that read "I love The Cube" but so far this has not come to fruition. I've included progress pictures below for your perusal. The Enfield home is getting the finishing touches on the rough-in and we just set the basement for the home in Lansing. Our client in Enfield opted to only partition off a small area upstairs for the bathroom and a closet, leaving the rest of the space open. We think this really adds to the aesthetic of the space.

In other news, we have acquired our new Dieci machine! In a way... A month or two ago Buzz took a trip to Italy to explore new rotating telehandler machinery. We intended to use the machine as a crane, a forklift and a man lift. Buzz was happy with what he found and ordered a Dieci that fit the bill. It was sent on a freight to the U.S. and was in transit from the port to Ithaca when it got "wadded" under a bridge. In other words, there wasn't enough clearance going under the bridge and the cab of our new machine was crumpled. It went a little something like THIS.

Now we have to wait for our new machine to be built and shipped to us. In the mean time, the lovely folks at Duke are allowing us to use a comparable Dieci machine from their fleet till our new machine arrives. It has helped us out immensely.

Finally, we have been working on a new form of lighting for the first floor where there is no drop down ceiling. We didn't like the idea of continuing to use wall sconces because we don't find them to be an appealing light source. We have therefore been experimenting with embedding LED lights on the underside of the ceiling beams. This is a much more contemporary form of lighting that we think adds a lot of character to our designs. We hope to be able to implement this idea into all future homes.

 
 

That's all for now! Thank you for reading.