COMMUNITY FORUM

phxbubblz2

03:46PM | 08/10/03
Member Since: 08/09/03
3 lifetime posts
Bvdecor
We are considering purchasing an old church and converting it into our home. I can use any and all information from someone who has done this in the past or knows someone who has. Information seems very limited on the net, as I have found only two other homes - I'm sure there must be more ?????
Thanks

BigHeadBobby

04:46PM | 03/02/04
Member Since: 03/01/04
14 lifetime posts
well let me practice my math! a structure is a structure is a structure! this means that their should not be any special needs for turning a church into a home! no need for any specialist.. just a good person who respects architecture in general. remeber concrete can be cut, wood rebuilt and altars moved! got a pic i could eyeball for ya? dwsanfordll@earthlink.net

Piffin

04:08PM | 03/21/04
Member Since: 11/06/02
1284 lifetime posts
Bobby, I have to disagree with that statement that a structure is a structure and that no specialized skills are needed. You sound like one with limited experience remodeling.

I have been in this since the late sixties. Every structure is different, and the older and more specialized the original was, the more creative the solutions become in refitting it to a new purpose. I recommend a desgn-build firm or an architect experienced in historuical structures for this situation. An initial consult should not be too expensive and yield some idea whether it is worth pursuiong. A Hoime inspector with a couple hundreds inspectins for experience under his belt would help determine if the structure is sound.

Excellence is its own reward!


Anonymous

12:17AM | 03/28/04
lets see.... i have worked on structures from the 1830's to recent. first of all let's take a tear down of the info provided to us: "an old church" now old can be deemed from 1 year to 100. the ceiling could be 8' to 30'. the roof could be bar trusses with panels and tar build up to hand-hewn mortised joints. a stucture is a structure is a structure. what do i mean by this? well here goes. a structure is the skeleton in which ext and int cladding is placed. that means when replacing interior ornamention which prob in this case is very limited is a no brainer. in your reply you said: "a desgn-build firm or an architect experienced in historuical structures" this is totally false. why? well here goes. a historical architect of firm is familiar with restorations.. which you don't wanna do, you want a house. they are familiar with older building techniques true.... but how has building differed over the years to the point they need to call in a specialist. the church is prob an old wood frame gable ended wonder. the only difference between one made today and in 1800 is that the stud size may be different, the trusses may be different but they might be identical. the only point i agree with piffin on is a home inspector can do the run around on a building to see what is the good, bad, and ugly. NOW for the chest flexing out part:

i have worked at 2 architecture firms for 5 years and have worked as a consultant and designer on many projects ranging from $50,000 to $26 million about 98% of those were homes. i have gone to school for almost 10 tens for architecture starting with a 2 year drafting degree. currently i am finishing an 8 year masters in architecture.

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?userid=2YCJN0ET43&isbn=0393731383&itm=1

you will find my name in this volume.

here is an expericence for you: i worked on a house. it was a mid-sized late federal/earlier classical revival house. the contractor was an retired gentleman who himself was 70 and only doing this for a friend. this house was of the roman doric order on the exterior with gable at each end of the house. we had to make drawing after drawing and finally they just messed it all up! the front end where the raking corona returns and meets the corona they had not figured out how it properly intersects. apparently the contractor had never completed one the proper way for any classical order in his career! so just because you have been working on ranch houses since the 1960s gives no validity to the weight in your breath. just cause i like to say things in a funny way doesn't denote that i am an idiot. i get it all the time from older contractors who think that cause i am 27 i do not know what i am doing. so piffin maybe one day you will wake up and realize that you do not know the answer to every building problem ever ...that younger people can actually have some knowledge about architecture.

pithy quote to chew on:

Excellence is a better teacher than mediocrity.

Porticus

12:19AM | 03/28/04
Member Since: 03/27/04
28 lifetime posts
lets see.... i have worked on structures from the 1830's to recent. first of all let's take a tear down of the info provided to us: "an old church" now old can be deemed from 1 year to 100. the ceiling could be 8' to 30'. the roof could be bar trusses with with tectum panels and tar build up to hand-hewn mortised joints. a stucture is a structure is a structure. what do i mean by this? well here goes. a structure is the skeleton in which ext and int cladding is placed. that means when replacing interior ornamention which prob in this case is very limited is a no brainer. in your reply you said: "a desgn-build firm or an architect experienced in historuical structures" this is totally false. why? well here goes. a historical architect of firm is familiar with restorations.. which you don't wanna do, you want a house. they are familiar with older building techniques true.... but how has building differed over the years to the point they need to call in a specialist. the church is prob an old wood frame gable ended wonder. the only difference between one made today and in 1800 is that the stud size may be different, the trusses may be different but they might be identical. the only point i agree with piffin on is a home inspector can do the run around on a building to see what is the good, bad, and ugly. NOW for the chest flexing out part:

i have worked at 2 architecture firms for 5 years and have worked as a consultant and designer on many projects ranging from $50,000 to $26 million about 98% of those were homes. i have gone to school for almost 10 tens for architecture starting with a 2 year drafting degree. currently i am finishing an 8 year masters in architecture.

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?userid=2YCJN0ET43&isbn=0393731383&itm=1

you will find my name in this volume.

here is an expericence for you: i worked on a house. it was a mid-sized late federal/earlier classical revival house. the contractor was an retired gentleman who himself was 70 and only doing this for a friend. this house was of the roman doric order on the exterior with gable at each end of the house. we had to make drawing after drawing and finally they just messed it all up! the front end where the raking corona returns and meets the corona they had not figured out how it properly intersects. apparently the contractor had never completed one the proper way for any classical order in his career! so just because you have been working on ranch houses since the 1960s gives no validity to the weight in your breath. just cause i like to say things in a funny way doesn't denote that i am an idiot. i get it all the time from older contractors who think that cause i am 27 i do not know what i am doing. so piffin maybe one day you will wake up and realize that you do not know the answer to every building problem ever ...that younger people can actually have some knowledge about architecture.

pithy quote to chew on:

Excellence is a better teacher than mediocrity.

Piffin

09:07AM | 03/28/04
Member Since: 11/06/02
1284 lifetime posts
Am I to understand that you porticus are also Big Head Bobby? It sounds so from the context.

Somehow you seem to think that my experience is in this has something to do with ranch homes, an absurd assumption. I can point out several items where you are wrong in your comparison, beginning with the fact that many of the old ones are framed post and beam with Mortised and doweled joints instead of hardware. That framing method means that placement of windows or other opennings has to work around the existing framing.

One thing the originator of this thread should be aware of is that renovation can often be more expensive than a new building.

I specialize in restoration and renovation of older structures and am currently doing one from 1800. Most of them require some amt of structural engineering to meet modern building codes, but every one of them is met in a different way. You may have "worked on" some large expensive projects but your assertion that all structures are alike is laughable in that it belies the lack of breadth in various types of construction. I have completed jobs that showed similar assumptions and big-headedness by architects that ended up costing the owneres large sums of money to compensate for.

I'm glad you have your anme published, but don't let it go to your head. It'll gete in the way of seeing something critical. Remember, the first goal of a design professional is to serve the client, not to get their name our front.

Excellence is its own reward!


Porticus

10:35PM | 03/28/04
Member Since: 03/27/04
28 lifetime posts
ahh well since i am the junior and a complete idiot to the subject matter, where i come from one only needs to modify a structure for modern structural building codes is a mute issue. basically you do not need to. if your changing the live loads yes. but to change an old house into a updated house no. again you talk bad of architects. i have worked on many a project where the contractor tried to play to the home owner to change things to fit the contractor or the homeowners 5 minute whims. of course i have seen projects like this cause hundreds of thousands of dollars added onto the house and make it not function or be disabled in some other way. i do not think you fully understand architects at all, that being your fatal mistake. maybe you need to sit down and read a book on the direction architecture in general is taking because mostly of modernism, contractors, and cheap materials. if you do not understand the under statement to what i am saying then you have no idea what an architect is.

Handyman

03:15AM | 03/29/04
Member Since: 11/18/98
188 lifetime posts
Let's not attack each other. Contractors and architects don't see eye to eye on every project. People can have different opinions and still be right. The homeowner/church owner has not given additional information, when they do you both may have a completely different take on the situation and may be able to better answer their questions.
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