3rdyear

Formwork makes the Dreamwork

Studio

This week, the 3rd-years worked on creating detail drawings of Ophelia’s Home’s foundation. Being able to see the foundations in person while drawing them is an amazing, unique opportunity. It has quickly given the students an understanding of how crawl-space foundations work. Each student selected a unique piece of the foundation to draw. These drawings will eventually be added onto to create 7 complete section cuts. The drawings show details through the foundation piers, vents, below significant areas, and the front porch. All the drawings were organized onto one construction document sheet, which is a new and very important skill for the 3rd-years to have learned.

Horseshoe Courtyard

This week, the 3rd-years’ continued work at Horseshoe Courtyard consisted of cleaning more bricks. They also began building and setting up wooden formwork for the incoming concrete! Students worked to hammer in stakes, cut wood boards, and drill formwork into place. They are extremely excited (some may say overly excited) about the concrete pour.

Perry Lakes Park

After a few weeks of working in Hale County, half of the 3rd year students ventured out to Perry Lakes Park to help with maintenance and repair. This included working with 5th-year students and graduate students to clear large debris from pathways and replace aging timber boards on the elevated walkways and the Birding Tower. Perry Lakes Park is currently closed to the public until it is rejuvenated. However, once the Rural Studio Students are finished, the park will be open for bird enthusiasts, outdoor lovers, and adventurers alike. 

Bricks, Bricks, and French Drains

Students pallet bricks

Horseshoe Courtyard

This week a small group of 3rd-year students helped Caleb and Claudia at the Horseshoe Courtyard. The work began with a trip to Selma to restack approx. 3,000 bricks (in storage) from pallets that had deteriorated in preparation for moving them to site in the near future. Upon returning to the site, the team helped remove formwork from a recent concrete pour and continued painting the exterior of the building along the alley on the north edge of the site. The 3rd-years also helped clean off and sort some of the bricks that were already on site, which will be used for the brick pad portion of the courtyard. The Horseshoe Courtyard space is quickly transforming since the walkway and metal work have gone up, the site has been graded, and gravel spread.

20K Ophelia’s Home

Starting week two, a new group of 3rd-years were given the opportunity to work on 20K Ophelia’s Home. Students created a new French drain, which took quite a lot of digging. Many of Ophelia’s cute “babies” (aka her cats) came to greet the new 3rd-years.

As the week continued, several students helped work at Morrisette House, where a small shed was being demolished, while others installed sun shades blinds around the front porch of Spencer House to provide a shady area for future project critiques. 

Week two has left the new students sore and tired, but more excited than ever for the semester. Hard work and game nights are drawing the seven students closer than they expected after only two weeks together. Between working on an actual job site and exploring detailed construction documents, the students are learning that hands-on experience provides a new perspective compared to a typical studio. 

Howdy from Newbern!

A series of student Polaroids with title "Meet the Third Years"

1 HOWDY

  • Mediocre Superpower: ability to find other people’s keys, but never their own
  • Born in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand
  • Their lack of wisdom teeth is no indication of their lack of wisdom
  • Enjoys microwavable Mac n’ Cheese (to the rest of the house’s dismay)
  • On a free day, they enjoy doing chores, jamming to heavy metal, and planning schemes
  • May or may not own all the Lego pieces in the land
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2 BYE

  • Mediocre Superpower: being able to sleep through 50 alarms
  • Lived in Israel for a year as a baby
  • Continues to taunt the house with unfulfilled promises of Oreo Pie
  • Embarrassed of their Hufflepuffness
  • Their right ear is higher than the left one
  • Hates ‘Get-to-Know-You’ questionnaires
  • Believes the greatest cereal of all time is Lucky Charms
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3 GRAVITAS

  • Mediocre Superpower: be able to understand animals (only if they need something)
  • Is a cheesy person
  • Born and Raised in Houston
  • Loves spicy food
  • Only Ravenclaw of the house (smarticle particle)
  • Believes that people who close the bathroom door when they are done and leave everyone to wonder whether it is occupied or not should reevaluate.
  • Thinks the ‘Get-to-Know-You’ questionnaire made by the blog team is perfect (aaaaaaawww)
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4 MILK JAR

  • Mediocre Superpower: ability to know a penny’s life story when touched
  • Always eating popcorn before meals (never finishes their plate smh)
  • Speaks fluent Itali-English
  • Hides food from everyone else in the house and will eat your food if left unattended
  • Cheeseball Shark/ partial merperson
  • Undying love for Oreos and still waiting on the promised Oreo Pie
  • DeLiang’s least favorite actress
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5 RUN?

  • Mediocre Superpower: every time they reach into their pocket, they will find a single, random tree nut
  • The only Gryffindor of the house
  • Has secret ancient knowledge of strawberry juice
  • On a free day, they enjoy messing with Houdini (the famous escape artist not their dog)
  • Wants to learn VEX
  • Was caught off guard by their immense love of Twilight
  • Scared of photos
  • Unnaturally good at handstands
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6 READING OVEN

  • Mediocre Superpower: ability to stop time but only to procrastinate
  • Enjoys eating pie
  • Has visited a Glass Bridge (and it was beautiful)
  • Believes dust is the single worst menace to society
  • Loves road trips
  • Has more drill bits than any one person could ever need
  • Can fit a family of four in their giant tool belt
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7 TUMMPLE

  • Mediocre Superpower: the ability to speak any language but only to talk to people about their dogs
  • Is a very proud Hufflepuff
  • Their pinky toes don’t reach the ground
  • Lost the spelling bee in 3rd grade because ‘vacuum’ has 2 u’s
  • Parmesan cheese addict
  • Visited Hobbiton, New Zealand (where they should be because they are a hobbit)
  • Aims to imprison all Tummples
  • Inventor of Little Monsters TM, Newbern’s critically acclaimed board game

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We’ve Been Framed

Things are in motion at 20K Ophelia’s Home! Specifically, the motion of lifting walls up and framing a porch. The exterior walls have been framed and sheathed, and the north and south walls have been lifted into place.

This process was started by measuring and tracing out the stud placement on the edges of the subfloor and laying out all the timber before nailing them together. Occasionally nailing some timber to the subfloor then having to take them out was surely a great way to improve our nail-removing skills. Once the walls had been framed with the studs at 24” on center, and window and door openings were located and framed, the green layer of Zip sheathing was laid on top.

The walls were not the only thing to be framed, as the MEP team was hard at work framing up the porch which proved to be more tedious than expected. In order for the porch to create a level surface with the soon to come interior floor, the joists had to be shortened slightly to accommodate for the layer of wood that will create the porch surface.

Speaking of the porch! There was also some more development of the ideas about a solution for the porch entrance that came from a review with Andrew Freear, Elena Barthel, and assistant director of Tulane’s design build program Emilie Taylor Welty. After much discussion of the three options, which are angle, north, and tongue porch, the 3rd-years were able to narrow it down to the “tongue” option. In order to reach a final porch design, this iteration will go through another process of refinement in the upcoming week.

3rd-years signing off for a jiminy split, see you folks after spring break! 

Back to the Drawing Board

It’s been an eventful week for the 3rd-years! Since Halloween review is fast approaching, they’ve been busy at work getting things ready in their quilting class, on site, and in studio.

For the quilt, each student finished the second iteration of their quilt squares which they arranged as a studio to craft the first iteration of their quilt! Now they know their final quilt top for Ophelia will look a little something like this:

On site, the studio’s tool trailer was moved in (yay!!!), and the team took care of other odds and ends – including cutting down limbs to make room for the trailer under a tree, reorganizing the wood stock pile, and removing the old septic line.

In studio, after drawing hundreds of different variations of Ophelia’s 20K floor plan it was time for the 3rd-years to consolidate their ideas and create a final floor plan! They studied multiple iterations of what could be the final plan and what those plans would look like in interior elevations and in section.

On Friday, the studio broke down into teams to study the final floor plan options. One team worked on drawing the different ceiling and wall/door alignments in elevation and section while the second team taped out a mock-up of the final plan underneath the fabrication pavilion.

The team mocks up the final plan under the fabrication pavilion.

After hundreds of drawings, hours of discussion, and a mock-up or two here and there, the students have finally decided on a final floor plan that they think is going to make an amazing home for Ophelia.