Sometimes a construction technique comes along which completely turns the traditional approach on its head. Facit Homes have developed a design and build system where timber raw materials are delivered to site and the structural components of the house are manufactured on-site in a temporary mobile production facility.
You may have seen the episode of Grand Designs where Celia and Diana acted as patrons and guinea pigs for the Facit system after responding to an advert in a building magazine.
They ended up with a beautifully designed and innovative home which has helped to push the envelope of house construction.
Although this was their first full house-build, Facit had been developing the technique for years and it was even incorporated alongside the Modcell system in Grand Designs ‘House that Kevin Built’ in 2008.
If you fancy a progressive and innovative system for your self build, or if you are a lifelong Lego fan, youll love this!
Not only are Facit blazing a trail with their build system but they are also keen to push the boundaries of architectural design. They place great emphasis on extensive dialogue with their clients in order to deliver a complete home design solution. One which not only meets the functional requirements and personal preferences of the home owner but creates a home which will improve and enhance their daily lives.
The design process is developed from simple sketches to a full 3D computer model which is detailed right down to socket positions.
The Facit Homes System
The construction phase is where it gets interesting…
Facit favours a metal screw pile foundation system where screws are driven into the ground and carry a grid of suspended timber beams which form the base for the superstructure.
Facit Homes then take the principles of the manufacturing industry and literally plonks them on-site in the form of a mobile production facility. This is effectively a shipping container housing a computer controlled CNC router.
The detailed CAD design is used to machine cut sheets of plywood into numbered elements which are fixed together producing cassettes. These cassettes form the building blocks of the structure, they are light enough to be manually handled into position and incorporate a hole into which insulation is blown once the structure is complete. The holes are then sealed with machined plywood plugs.
The cassettes are used to form floors, walls and the roof of the structure with recesses already designed-in to accommodate service installation which can easily be installed in any order. Finishes and final fixes follow on as normal.
All the elements produced on site are manufactured exactly in accordance with the 3D design specification down to the finest detail. Facit call this the D-PROCESS. This system and the use of CNC fabrication means that what is built on site is precisely what has been designed on the computer.
- Design and build are completed by one principle contractor.
- Detailed 3D design right down to plug sockets positions and service installations.
- Detailed design offers accurate costings.
- High quality, accurate and consistent producton with low tolerances.
- High efficiency.
- Fast construction.
- Responsibly sourced timber is a sustainable and carbon sequestering construction material.
- Component production takes place on site.
- Delivery logistics are reduced and simplified.
- No missing pieces, and if there are they can easily be manufactured on-site.
- Low waste. Minimal timber waste is returned to the plywood manufacturer to be used as fuel. Blown-in insulation eliminates off-cut waste.
- Reduced or the elimination of the need for mechanical lifting equipment.
- As a new process, teething problems may need to be ironed out as they arise and long-term performance is yet to be proven. Having said that, the materials being used are already tried and tested in timber frame and SIP construction.
For more information on Facit Homes, to see more of their projects or to get in touch, visit their website.
If you’d like to find the episode of Grand Designs featuring Celia, Diana and Facit homes, it was episode 2 of series 12.
To have a look at other build techniques avalaible for your self build, have a look through our House Construction Methods section.
Return to The Self Build Guide Home Page from Facit Homes