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  1. #1
    Jim McMillan's Avatar
    Jim McMillan Guest

    Default Old "Kit" / Pre-fab Framing?

    I recently inspected a small (<900 ft.sq.) house reportedly constructed in the early 50's. I discovered what appeared to be pre-manufactured panels used to construct both the roof system and floor system. Although not visible due to exterior and interior wall cladding I suspect that the walls were similar in construction. I have inspected an est. 4000-4500 structure in my time as a home / commercial inspector and have never seen any pre-fab construction similar to this. I have researched as many web sources as possible, including Inspect-a-Pedia, for any information and have come up with a blank. I would appreciated any links or personal information that anyone has that might provide some history, and possibly a manufacturer, of this type of structure.

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Posts
    1,217

    Default Re: Old "Kit" / Pre-fab Framing?

    Sears sold house kits for several years. I have inspected a few. This site - How to identify a Sears Kit Home - is a good place to start to identify if your house is a Sears Kit.

    "Baseball is like church. Many attend but few understand." Leo Durocher
    Bruce Breedlove
    www.avaloninspection.com

  3. #3
    Philip's Avatar
    Philip Guest

    Default Re: Old "Kit" / Pre-fab Framing?

    An exterior picture of the house would be a great help.


  4. #4
    Jim McMillan's Avatar
    Jim McMillan Guest

    Default Re: Old "Kit" / Pre-fab Framing?

    I have researched the Sears kits and none of the images available come close to resembling this home. I have also searched for images of "Lustron" homes, "National Homes" (Lafayette, IN), Cemesto, Gordon Van Tine, Montgomery War, Alladin, Bennett, and a couple of others. The general exterior appearance would tend to suggest Alladin, but I really can't tell. Attached are front and rear photos. The small enclosed area on the left rear corner was originally a small porch that has been enclosed at some point in time. Also, the structure was originally sided with cement fiber, but now has vinyl installed over the original siding. Original heating appears to have been a single register under floor mounted oil furnace in a short central hallway. Again, any help in satisfying my curiosity is greatly appreciated

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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    La$ Vega$, Nevada
    Posts
    49

    Default Re: Old "Kit" / Pre-fab Framing?

    It may be 'pre-manufactured' and still not be a 'kit' home. I've been involved, on several levels, with builders who took a standard set of plans and then 'panelized' the roof, walls and floors in their warehouse....then took everything out to the site and assembled it. I visited with the owners of Ultra-Steel Inc. in Prescott Valley Arizona in the summer of 1989, and watched them put such a house up in a single day. Entirely assembled in the warehouse behind their office building, from a standard set of locally-produced building plans. It all came in on flatbeds...numbered and color-coded. Everybody knew their job...and it went up fast. So what you have there in North Carolina, could be a locally-produced, off-site pre-assembled or 'unitized' home. Lots of advantages to building a home that way. Are there any neighbors in the area who have been there since the early 1950's that could remember the details? Maybe there are more homes in that 'hood' from the same builder.

    Glenn R. Curtis CMI
    La$ Vega$, Nevada
    Inspecting Nevada since 1982

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Southern Vancouver Island
    Posts
    4,546

    Default Re: Old "Kit" / Pre-fab Framing?

    Interesting. I am picturing the hoist used to bring those roof panels up, would have been an old cable machine, I'd imagine. Talk to the guy with the oldest hoist in town. Good bet he or his dad was there.

    On second thought, it's only one storey, and they could have used skid poles and a tractor.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  7. #7
    Philip's Avatar
    Philip Guest

    Question Re: Old "Kit" / Pre-fab Framing?

    When you say 'cement fiber' is it asbestos panels?


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