First, let us say that we appreciate the nice notes of support after introduction of this Sundancer Rebuild blog site. We are grateful for all of you who have opted to follow our progress by subscribing.
Much has happened in the past weeks. First, let me give you a bit of background on the construction method we have decided to use for the Sundancer Rebuild. We will use SIPs, which we introduced in the first posting. These are factory made “Structural Insulated Panels”. They consist of strong and thick (5 ½”) foam panels with a two sided skin that is attached using high strength industrial adhesive combined with very high pressure (2200 pounds). Rob and I visited the factory of Acme Panels in Radford, Virginia where we have contracted for our SIPs. They are currently being engineered to create panels that will withstand St. John’s windstorms up to 185 mph and our Category 4 earthquakes.
On this point, you will recall in our last posting that we were anticipating using a concrete product known as MGo, as the skins for our SIPs. After review by Acme’s Engineer, it was decided that the MGo boards are not a good fit for STJ. The combination of Category 4 seismic events and high winds are too much for them to handle. It was determined that because of the rigidity of the panels, shaking from an earth quake could possibly loosen the fasteners connecting the MGo boards and then, on the next high wind event, the panels wind resistance could be drastically reduced to as little has half of the intended wind rating.
Thus, the MGo boards as the skin of our panels was abandoned and replaced with ½” pressure treated plywood, which is where we are now.
On that subject, many of you are familiar with Concordia, the eco resort near Salt Pond that was built by Stanley Selengut, the found of Maho Bay resort when he was losing his lease at Maho. During Irma, nearly every building and structure at Concordia was totally destroyed. There were, however two residences on the property that were built about ten years ago using the SIP system. They survived. Rob and Na’ama visited those two properties during their recent stay in STJ. Here is a link from that SIP company describing that situation: https://www.eco-panels.com/blog/126-eco-panelsinthecaribbean.html
We will have some ways to go, but I thought you might want to see the current version of Na’ama’s floor plans for Sundancer. Not sure you can see clearly but it is the best I can do so far. The sea view side is to your right. The total square footage is about 1,500 square feet. This is compared to the original Sundancer which was 1150 square feet including the loft, but not the basement. For orientation purposes, the middle room on the ground floor is a reuse of the original basement.