Monaco 28 with modified Contemporary Facade

Monaco 28 with modified Contemporary Facade

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Bricks and Mortar, and Plumbing (with pics)

Brick laying commenced yesterday and by today they are about 2/3rds of the way around the lower level. We like the colour in general, and are a little worried about the colour variation, but it is hard to tell because the bricks are absorbing water from the mortar. As stated in the last post, Austral have agreed to tint the light ones if there is too much variation.

Plumbing rough in has also gone ahead in the past two days.  I am surprised at the spaghetti of hoses and pipes that will eventually be concealed.  You get a real sense of how internal work is very rough and that the art of building is in the concealment (bricks, skirts, architrave, gyprock, cornice, etc).

The following problems were found, and then resolved through some quick calls from the SS:

  • Upgraded Main Bathroom freestanding bath only comes in 1700 mm (not 1500 mm as specified). Agreed to use the 1700 mm and reduce the long side of the shower from 1200 to 1000 mm.  This means that the Shower niche needs to be made thinner.  I am happy with this because I'd prefer the bigger bath anyway.
Free standing bath upgrade
  • Flick mixers for dual shower heads in Ensuite would clash with Niche.  SS wanted to delete the long niche and make smaller ones at each end but I wasn't happy with this as they wouldn't be visible.  Alternative - Niche to be raised 200 mm. Great result.
Ensuite water supply with raised niche height (to be completed)
Very happy with the flexible and cooperative approach taken by the Fowler Homes SS.  More steady progress being made.  Driest May in Sydney on record, sorry Farmers but keep it comin'.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Australbricks Metropolis Topaz - Problem Under Control

Our SS responded straight away last night.  He really should be getting some rest rather than responding to complaints about bricks!  He rang the Austral rep first thing and arranged a meeting on site after lunch.

I showed the rep some examples of the colour range exhibited in the packs delivered.  He acceptedthat the colour range was greater than should be expected.  He compared the samples with other packs around the site and felt that the lighter sample was the outlier and felt that it may be present in small quantities (within the usual 5% allowance).  The two resolutions we agreed were:

  1. He suggested that the brick layers are asked to look for lighter 
  2. bricks and sort out where appropriate. An example was left for the brickies.
  3. If the colour variation cannot be successfully sorted by the brick layers, Austral will tint any unacceptable bricks to an appropriate colour (anticipated to be within a few hundred).  Apparently you can't see the difference after the tinting process.

I am happy with this plan provided that I am given the opportunity to review the laid bricks after cleaning and agree to what needs tinting (if required). A timely and satisfactory result - can't ask for more.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Australbricks Metropolis Topaz - Problems? (pics)

Very excited to have the bricks delivered today as they are such an important feature of the facade.  I made sure I had a good look because I want them to be right.  I have found a few concerns that I will raise with the SS.  The colour variation in the bricks appears to be greater than that shown in Australbricks display centre on Wallgrove Road.  I am OK with a bit of variation so that the bricks look natural, not painted, but the fashion of the day is monochrome.  Am I being too fussy?

Australbricks Metropolis Topaz Display Wall

Range of colours in my bricks

Close-up of colour variation
 Also, some of the packs have been placed a bit rough on uneven ground and have broken apart.  Although I am happy we chose colour through bricks rather than coated ones where the body colour shows through, I still don't want them to be chipped.

 I'll see what the SS has to say.

We now need to order our Sydney Pressed Common Recycled Bricks for the Meals Room feature wall. I am seeing these used all over the place and they look great.  Very happy that they will be laid soon.  Shopping tomorrow.

All Framed Up (pics galore)

Fowler Homes are well and truly on a roll with something happening almost every day for the past two weeks or so.  We now have the second storey and roof trusses complete and the windows installed.  We got a chance to have a walk around the second storey for the first time given that Fowler Homes does not have a Monaco display home.  The central sitting area is massive but furnishing will be a little difficult given the placement of doors and the linen cupboard.  The bedroom are all a good size and the changes I made to the location of the windows in bed 3 and 4 really suit the views we have.  The views from all second storey windows are fantastic - a real upside from building up on a hill - and to counteract the extra cost of building on a sloping site (split level, drop edge beams, retaining walls).

We are not getting any real communication from the SS, but other than this we are really, really happy with the progress so far. I am excited.

I love the two step roof adding a bit of perspective

An imposing view, large side acces

Stacker and sliding doors to alfresco - one of the main reasons we chose the Fowler Homes Monaco

Sitting room window highlights the park and hides the roof tops

I moved this window to avoid the two storey house next door, now it looks out to the park

Master Bedroom WIR on left, ensuite or right

View from Master Bedroom windows, 10.38mm lam glass to reduce neighbourhood noise ingress

Amazing view from Bedroom 2, you can see skyline on the South Coast at night

Bedroom 2 view framed by the large awning window