Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Radio Show Interview - all about Sweden, Prefab, USA New Wall & Swedish Platform Framing

Sunday afternoon I was on an internet radio program called Burning Down the House hosted by architect Curtis Wayne and discussed the broad range of topics that have been covered in our Letters from Sweden series.

Burning Down the House covers all matters of Design and Architecture and appears on the Heritage Radio Network - essentially an internet broadcast, the show went out by live stream on Sunday afternoon and is subsequently available as a Podcast. Heritage has a bunch of great shows on cooking and food, wine and beer, so all you foodies following out there may enjoy some of the shows they offer.

Curtis had done his homework and proceeded to lead us through the broad range of topics that we have covered in the course of our study of Swedish housing. As you might expect, we were not able to plumb the depths of all this content, but we did speak in some detail about many points. Curtis suggested I come back for another show where we could delve into some of these areas in greater depth, an opportunity I'd welcome.

There are several ways to listen to the show. Its on iTunes if that's your thing. Or you can listen online on their site, or download the audio file. If you are looking on the list it is show #81 from 11/13/11. Its best if you up the volume a bit since I was mumbling - I really got to work on my radio persona!


  1. (Offtop)

    Hi, Greg!

    I want to ask you about building walls thickness of 8’. I've never built a wall thicker then 6 inches (150mm). But now after reading your article about new American wall, I want try to build 8’ wall.

    What it would be better:

    1) Build wall of 8’ studs. But through studs will be a good conductor of cold. And with what spacing I need to build studs? 24 in o.c. like 2x6 studs? And how do you think is it possible to use 1.57x8 studs (40mm x 200mm) instead of normal 6x8 studs?

    2) Build wall of 6’ studs and add an interior 2x2’ horizontal strapping. So In this case, thermal bridging will virtually eliminated. But will be horizontal 2x2’ strapping strong backing for drywall or wood interior siding (decking).

    3) Build wall of 6’ studs and add an interior or exterior vertical strapping. In this case, it option will be like 1st but will provide strong backing for dry wall.

    Best regards, Sergey
    Moscow, Russia

  2. Sergey, To overcome the thermal bridges you can use an interior strapping configuration, or an exterior insulation configuration, or both. That is the Better and Best configurations of the USA New Wall. See the link at the top right of the page to see all of this in one big blog post. We show both 6" and 8" options. If you insulate the interior strapping space you are still gaining insulation value over a regular wall, and if you follow the Swedish Platform Framing and make a continuous air barrier the house will be tight.

  3. Ok, i see. Think will try 2x6' + 2x2' interior strapping configuration :)

    And also, horizontal 2x2' will be strong enough for drywall?

  4. Yes, it should be fine with drywall over it, spaced properly. Its worth noting however that the Swedes often put solid wood boards or particle board over the strapping before the drywall, to make the walls more solid.

  5. I thought that was a great show Greg--congrats on making it to the airwaves! Burning down the house might be one of my new new favorite radio shows about architecture & construction.
    Keep up the good work!