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Re: [hreg] Still more on the solar house

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  • Kevin L. Conlin
    I like Roberts comments on a local appropriate design guide for the steamy Gulf Coast climate, which is the biggest barrier to solarization in the Houston
    Message 1 of 7 , Aug 22, 2000
      I like Roberts comments on a local appropriate design guide for the steamy
      Gulf Coast climate, which is the biggest barrier to solarization in the
      Houston area. So many technologies that work elsewhere aren't effective
      here. I think some of this work may have been done by TX-SES (greenhouse
      guide), HL&P (energy conservation tips) and TX A&M Energy extension service
      (renewable technologies) Combined with some of the FSEC information, which
      is appropriate, a pretty comprehensive guide could be developed. I think
      HL&P is often receptive to these types of projects, they funded some of the
      old Houston Solar Energy Society's publications, and even distributed them.
      I think this type of project fits the purpose of the HREG, the hard part is
      finding the champion to see it through. HSES used to publish design tips
      in their monthly newsletter, a compilation of these articles might be an
      easy way to get the project underway. Anyway, good idea, good luck!

      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Robert Johnston <rjohnsto@...>
      To: <hreg@egroups.com>
      Sent: Monday, August 21, 2000 6:58 PM
      Subject: RE: [hreg] Still more on the solar house

      > I was in agreement with Kevin until I read Charles latest note below.
      > I had an
      > uneasy feeling about the proposal, in that it appeared self-serving (not
      > that it wouldn't
      > help others, but certainly would be of greatest benefit to Charles) and
      > would make
      > the professionals in our group feel taken advantage of, which I certainly
      > would hate
      > to see since they are such terrific resources for all of us (though
      > hopefully we provide
      > something of value to them in return).
      > However, I like the way Charles puts it below. The idea of working
      > collectively to put
      > together a catalog of all the best ideas for the Houston area, and
      > incorporating that into
      > a house design, seems to me like a fun idea we could all contribute to.
      > it as a group
      > exercise, without Charles' needs specifically in mind, but then he or
      > else can build
      > it later if desired, or use elements of the design. I'd propose that our
      > professionals
      > help in the process, but that when it comes to the stage of actually
      > up plans, and
      > then later, actually building one, we pay them for professional services
      > rendered, perhaps
      > encouraging our professional members to work together on the project as a
      > team, or making
      > them bid on it, for fairness (e.g., not to discriminate any one particular
      > professional
      > member in our group). I'm thinking mostly here of architects. Taking it
      > the design
      > and/or building stages would depend, of course, upon obtaining funding.
      > If the first stage was a catalog of ideas, e.g., giving various options
      > each element of
      > the structure, such as papercrete, adobe, strawbale, aerated concrete,
      > faswall, etc., for
      > the walls, another list for the windows, another list for the roof,
      > system, etc.,
      > and giving pros/cons specifically for the Houston area (with references),
      > that would be a
      > terrific resource. If this were done as part of our website, it could be
      > living document
      > that evolves with time.
      > My 2 cents...
      > Robert
      > -----Original Message-----
      > From: ChasMauch@... [mailto:ChasMauch@...]
      > Sent: Wednesday, August 16, 2000 10:11 AM
      > To: hreg@egroups.com
      > Subject: [hreg] Still more on the solar house
      > Hello everyone,
      > Thanks for all the feedback so far, most positive. However, I was a little
      > disturbed by several of Kevin's comments.
      > For one, I was not aware that award winning solar demonstration homes have
      > been build in Houston (or that Mike has a solar home). If that is the
      > why couldn't we have a solar home show here? I thought we discussed that
      > once
      > but decided that there wern't any such homes available and you have to go
      > Austin for that kind of thing. Would like to know where these homes are so
      > could go see them.
      > Also the comment that I am expecting the professional members of the HREG
      > contribute their time and expertise, basically asking them to work for
      > and that will not be well received, it will be up to me to make this
      > my will, money, etc. It was never my intent to ask anyone to do anything
      > that
      > they are not willing and even anxious to do out of pure interest in the
      > project and promoting HREG and solar in general in the Houston area.
      > Obviously I would pay for the house, using any discounts, grants, or other
      > help that I can find, but would not ask for help from anyone who feels
      > need to be paid for just talking about such a project, since I thought
      > was what HREG was all about. Maybe I'm confused on this.
      > But I do appreciate all the comments so far, and am serious about the
      > thing. Oral's suggestion that we might find some funding to help out with
      > sounds interesting. Let's look at it this way. If we did research on an
      > absolutely state of the art house of the future - not only energy
      > but healthy (filtered air to remove pollen and Houston's infamous
      > clean water - carbon bed, reverse osmosis, etc) and made it as nice yet as
      > economical as possible, and then actually built it, then maybe more people
      > would build such houses too. I think that is an interesting project in
      > itself, and probably there is lots of literature available that some of
      > members know about. Then I might be the first to build such a house, which
      > would be a benefit to me, but hopefully everyone would enjoy being
      > Then again I might decide for one reason or another I don't want to do it
      > after all - which I would need to reserve the right to do, but it would
      > have been a waste. At least, I don't think it would be.
      > Anyway, would like to continue the discussion here and see what kind of
      > consensus we can come to, if any. Hope everyone will contribute to the
      > conversation.
      > Charlie
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