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A Modern Mountain: Model ReModel West

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Products — Home Improvement

A Modern Mountain: Model ReModel West

Beauty meets performance and fine design in this Arizona home

By By Doug Walter December 2, 2019
This article first appeared in the December 2019 issue of Pro Remodeler.

The style of the Model ReModel West project could be called modern rustic. This gracious three-bedroom home sits amid spectacular nature beauty, and with its makeover, gained much-needed space. 

The project was led by Bill Owens, a well-known industry leader with more than three decades in the field. He established Owens Construction in 1982 in Powell, Ohio, and today, it's one of the premier design-build firms in central Ohio.

Owens has been active with the National Association of Home Builders since 1987, and Owens Construction has been named NAHB Builder of the Year five times. He has served on numerous committees, and taught many advanced courses. 

Besides his service to NAHB, he is a principal director for the Better Living Design Institute, a national not-for-profit focused on promoting voluntary universal design inclusions into market-rate housing. 

Of the project, Owens says, “It had been awhile since I had my belts on. I got blisters on my blisters! But I enjoyed it."

The project features LaCantina Doors for the huge openings on the north and east walls. The widest opening is a 12-foot by 8-foot-tall foldback unit opening out to the east porch, where the two center sections pull apart to allow a 6-foot opening. 

“LaCantina’s products are well built," says Owens. “The combination of a 10-year warranty with the very slim stiles and rails that provide maximum views was a big selling point for me on this project.” Some of LaCantina’s products are even rated for use in High Velocity Hurricane Zones, so we know they're built strong.

For the siding, Owens went with LP SmartSide, a durable, pre-finished, man-made product. At last year’s International Builders' Show, the company displayed a pitching machine throwing fast balls at LP products and a competitor's. It did not go well for the competitor, but LP shrugged off the fast balls—an impressive demonstration.

Although the panels are available in 16-foot lengths, installation instructions call for a break at any band joists, so Owens included a horizontal trim piece between the first and second floors.  “I like that this is a wood product, and is both easy to work with and lightweight,” says Owens. “It goes up fast and looks great”.

Shiplap paneling from UFP-Edge adds warmth to the great-room ceiling. Seen here is a 1x6 in grey. A rustic red was used for the east porch ceiling outside. The product comes factory finished with a low-VOC stain.

Owens and his crew used TruStile doors in this home, including a hanging barn door built from walnut veneer and glass. “It was everything I had hoped for," Owens says. "They promise a high-quality, made-to-order product, and that’s what they delivered.”

Founded in Denver in 1995, TruStile is an industry leader in design. Every door is made to order using highly refined MDF and hand-selected veneers and lumber, and comes with a 10-year warranty.

Owens selected decking from Deckorators. The boards went down in an alternating 2-, 4-, and 6-inch pattern, with dark slate colored edges. This adds visual interest, compared to using the same size for each board.

The Deckorators line is 35% lighter than standard composite due to the patented Eovations technology, which uses fiber-like material with air pockets. "It's warrantied for 25 years against stain and fade," Owens says, "and also structural failure and removal and replacement cost, even if used in ground contact." He used the slotted boards along with the company's Stowaway hidden fastening system.

The home has a mini-split heat pump system from Goodman Manufacturing, with three linesets feeding nine heating/cooling systems. The units have automatic adjustments that are effective down to 5°F for heating, but Flagstaff often gets below-zero. What then?

Goodman Daikin has that figured out, with two small furnaces: one to keep the chill off the crawlspace, the other as a heat back-up during sub-zero nights.

Two Trails sustainable building consultants ensured the home reached optimal efficiency. The company conducted a blower door test when the project was near completion in order to depressurize the structure and measure air infiltration. Two Trails is comprised of skilled building professionals including architects, engineers, and general contractors.

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