Custom Modular Homes USA 

Our Trained Craftsmen

As a factory engineer Mr. Baker enjoys discussing the obvious benefits of factory construction; but to avoid misinterpretation and for proprietary reasons, this CMHUSA Website does not delve into "how-to" specifics (or mistakes to avoid).

 

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These pieces of sheetrock are huge. Specialized, efficient workstations make handling them easy in a factory, even for the ceiling. As you will see in photos below, most of the workstations are so large that a factory is needed.

So what are some of the advantages you see in this photo? 1. More strength (Actually, discuss that with CMHUSA). 2. Less labor cost (Larger sheetrock pieces mean less butt joints to tape. Note the single seam next to Mr. Baker and no butt joints. (Using joint compound and tape to cover joints and seams, referred to as "taping," is labor intensive). 3. Again, less labor cost (Blemishes created by taping must be fixed. Fewer joints means less taping area that may need to be corrected). 

 


 

   
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For a fine finish, this guy knows what he is doing.

By the way, there's something behind all of this sheetrock that you can't see: These sheets are not just nailed or screwed, they are glued. The strength is immense. But to glue in a manner acceptable to CMHUSA takes a major workstation and training.

   
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The skilled craftsman at this workstation is building a stairway.  

Mr. Baker of CMHUSA once built a highly complex workstation for General Electric. That particular workstation made thermostats for small GE appliances retailed across the U.S. and Canada. Likewise for factories that build giant modules for houses: Proper workstations play a very important role. Have CMHUSA on your side.  

   
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This stairway is hard yellow pine. Even though the beauty of its wood will be hidden by carpet, its strength will last the life of the home.  

Completed just before needed, (i) this stair will not sit around taking up valuable factory space, and yet (ii) it will not delay other workers who would otherwise have to stop working and wait for it to be built.

 

 

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Another beautiful stairway just installed.

By the way, not visible is the home's superb flooring system that supports all of this, The high-strength double bands around the floor system perimeter (see photographs further down) are double that of homes built the ordinary way outdoors on an open site.

 

 

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Built here in the factory and installed here, these components will never lie outside in the dirt or mud—or worse, on uneven ground.

Homes built outdoors, the ordinary way, incur several potential problems in ordering trusses: 1. They cost more. 2. Warranty-breaking damage can occur if unloaded roughly or unloaded on uneven ground. 3. They often lie out in the open.

 

 

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A giant, multimillion-dollar manufacturing facility with giant workstations as well as small ones like the one in this photo all save money. Ultimately, it's homebuyers' money that is saved.

In this example, overhead doors allow smaller workstations to come and go in the pursuit of new efficiencies.

 

 

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This factory-trained worker is skilled at framing a perfect wall.

The workstation shown here is engineered to be fast, precise and save the homebuyer money.

If you click to enlarge the image, to this person's left there are two longer pieces of wood that touch the floor. This worker frames in this manner day after day, becoming exceptionally efficient. Now for the reason for the two pieces of wood: They will be pulled up to the top of the wall a few minutes later and become the top plate. Smart!

 

 

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Something else smart about this workstation: The piece Mr. Baker is pulling forward is the framing for where a window will be. But quite ingeniously, it's being framed upside down!

Workstations operated by skilled workers in factories save lots of money. However, heavy steel workstations such as this are not portable. They cannot be used if building a house the ordinary wayoutdoors on a random house site somewhere.

   
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Mr. Baker's introduction to engineering innovations in construction was as an engineer for General Electric.

GE felt that dollar for dollar, stronger, more durable and safer houses should be built in in the form of modules, in a factory.

 

 

 

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A single worker is hoisting a massive floor system. It is suspended in the air for a reason. Can you guess what it is? Also note that unlike building a house the ordinary way, the band around the outside (also called the rim joist) is double thickness.

Up on the bright yellow stand is a stack of precisely cut joists, pre-cut by a truck-size machine and then brought here by a materials handler shortly before this worker needed them. All of this is done in a manner to reduce unnecessary cost to the homebuyer.

 

 

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Once this module arrives at the house site, this stud wall will join against the stud wall of a second module, doubling the thickness, adding strength and adding acoustic quality.

If you know where to look in a finished home, the added thickness is sometimes visible. But whether you realize that it is there or whether it is hidden, it has benefits.

 

 

 

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This house could have been built the ordinary way, outdoors on an open site, but not a chance—the buyers of this house had far too much experience to let that happen. They insisted on modular.

They knew how comfortable a modularized house plan could be in winter on a mountain side

   
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Building a custom home anywhere should consider the land. This home is built for bone-chilling winds and dazzling views as it overlooks foothills. Note: The large section of white wall up in the peak of the gable is only temporary. It will soon be replaced with glass.

Under that on the main level (where you see the wrap-around deck) more glass will be installed there as well. As you will see in photos below, a loft will overlook the main level. The raised basement, built shortly before delivery of the heavy-duty modules, is designed for a second fireplace.

   
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A side elevation. The demonstrated structural strength and rugged durability of this home might have dazzled craftsmen of 100 years ago.

Although CMHUSA will build the ordinary way, there is a better way that CMHUSA urges every homebuyer and family to consider: heavy-duty modules built with proper oversight: true American modular homes built for durability and solidness.

   
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Home windows on display. A home built this well deserves good windows. In this case the homeowner specified Anderson. It would have been a shame to waste windows as nice these on a less-well-built house without this level of strength, anti-air infiltration and so forth.  

This home design would be nice overlooking the Potomac River in King George or on the James River in Richmond. For custom home builders in King George, VA, see our contact in this Website. Likewise in this Website is our contact for custom home builders in Richmond, VA. For a home on a lake near Zions Crossroads, Charlottesville and the Town of Louisa, click on our contact for custom home builders in Charlottesville, VA.

   
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The beam near the top is six joined pieces of engineered wood (close-up photos below). The square section without sheetrock will soon be replaced by a stone chimney from a corner fireplace below.

Dream home plans should deliver both beauty and strength: Regardless of a project's engineering and architectural challenges, CMHUSA will create "the" house design for you.

   
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One of the two stone fireplaces will be in the corner behind Mr. Baker, under the temporary square in the ceiling.

For any architectural design from traditional to modern home design, or from a 1,000 square foot home to 10,000 square feet and beyond, contact CMHUSA.  

   
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Although CMHUSA strongly advocates for building with (properly built) modules, keep in mind that CMHUSA will build the ordinary way as well.

Caveat: To get the potential benefits of modules as discussed in this CMHUSA Website, benefits that stand to be far superior to building the ordinary way, keep in mind that there must be proper oversight at every stage—never assume that the process is automatic or that all results are the same. 

   
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No railings, trim or carpet, this is a work in progress! This loft area will have both a view of the first-floor fireplace and a panoramic view of the foothills. But the primary reason for this photo is to show the heavy-duty, reinforced sides of the loft's floor structure. It's double thick . . .

. . . yes, twice as thick as if CMHUSA were to build a set of house plans the ordinary (site built) way, and yet the cost will be no more. Ask about custom floor plans, contemporary modular homes, eco modular homes and net zero homes. Contact CMHUSA for custom home builders in King George, VA, Richmond, VA , Charlottesville, VA, and Boston, MA.

   
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More work in progress. The type of doors, hardware, finishes, as well as trim around the doors, windows, baseboard and crown are whatever a buyer may choose.

Designer homes means that all such items are at the discretion of the buyer, as are the home floor plans themselves. 

   

NOW LET'S LOOK AT A THE BENEFITS OF REPLACING AN OLDER HOME NEAR WASHINGTON, DC, WITH A HEAVYWEIGHT MODULAR HOME.

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Fast: Snap your fingers: Old house gone, new one here, and minimum disturbance to neighbors; in this case, to this bedroom community of Washington, D.C., just 45 miles north on I-95 from Fredericksburg, VA.

The trend of replacing unremarkable houses with modern house plans is tailor-made for CMHUSA heavyweight modular. It was better to tear down the old house than try to make it something it never could be, wasting time, wasting money and ending up with a semi-mess. Instead, this far superior replacement home seemed to happen in an instant.

   
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Rear view. When brilliantly executed, prefabricated houses, another name for modular, are a superior choice. A crane lowered these remarkably well-built modules into place. The homebuyer, helping as a home designer, asked that the original basement be kept. This further minimized site work.

In fact, disturbance was so minimal that surviving placement of this heavy-duty custom prefab home is a delicate plant at the left edge of blue tarp. Even the beautyberry bush's vivid purple berries are still intact. 

   
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This fireplace with stone hearth was built by skilled masons in the factory. This is one of two fireplaces in this floor plan. The hardwood floors will be installed here at the house sitewhat you see here is merely the subfloor. 

Brief reminder: Let's not forget what may prove to be the most important element to the homeowner and family: The level of detail hidden behind the sheetrock will affect both everyday-living comfort and strength of structure.

   
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This hallway space may seem to be no different than that of any other fine home. At this stage the heavy-duty modules used in building this home are no longer visible. All that remains is the knowledge that this home has undergone violent testing and was built so well that the modules easily survived.

In fact, so fierce was the testing that it would have destroyed the home had it been built the ordinary way.

   
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Stairs can be straight, flared or winder. They can be floating or can be supported by walls. They can be oak or pine as shown in earlier photos, or they can be poplar, mahogany, maple or cherry.

Raill, baluster and newel assemblies can be any brand on the market or can be custom.

   
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One of several baths in this 4,000-plus square-foot home. Fixtures and cabinetry are a matter of personal taste and budget.

Question: Is this a toilet that actually works? Have you heard Senator Rand Paul's complaint about toilets that don't flush on the first flush, wasting water that they were suppose to save? 

   
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Decorative choices are unlimited, from the more affordable to the most extravagant.

In addition, it is what you don't see that is equally critical the the homeowner and family: The floor structure (hidden under the floor covering) will impact the long term comfort of the home. 

 

   
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Frameless showers of any size and configuration, from the basic but beautiful to the the timeless and elegant.

Create your own sumptuous shower design. Work with CMHUSA for custom home designs.

   
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Protective plastic covering over the carpet. 

Every building situation is unique and has its own requirements.

   
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For this home, the classic look of wood siding is replicated by using a far stronger and long-lasting cement fiberboard—it's rot-proof and fire-proof. The reddish color "shingle" pattern on the front gable (several photos earlier) is a color choice offered by that product's manufacturer. With CMHUSA, all is possible.

For this homebuyer, the integrity of properly built modules was the perfect solution. And as you may recall, the client was able to keep the already-existing basement, thus the original window well peeking out from below.

 

HOUSE PLANS ARE MORE THAN INTERIORS AND EXTERIORS (BOTH EASY TO SEE). HIDDEN BEHIND SIDING AND SHEETROCK IS THE HOME'S STRUCTURE. TO GET AN IDEA ABOUT STRUCTURE, LOOK IN THE ATTIC . . . 

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A picture of craftsmanship and value: This structure has a  beauty of its own. In this case, modules offer an enviable choice for the dollar. This attic might seem to have been built to be a great marketing tool, but it was not. Other than the family lucky enough to own the home, no one else will ever go up there and see it. However, here's a comment by a neighbor who saw this during the construction phase: "It's built like a fort!"

Dollar for dollar, consider having your new home built using modules. 

   
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This photo is of another home, likewise built far stronger with modules: Can you guess what the orange pipe is for? It's a feed to a fire sprinkler in the ceiling of the room below. (Sprinklers are a wonderful option.)

Here's a puzzle: If you click on the photo to enlarge it, you will see footprints of white sheetrock dust. Thus the odd thing about this: Why did the worker not crash through the sheetrock ceiling? After all, sheetrock ceiling material is not strong enough to be walked on.

 

(Answer: This ceiling was not built the ordinary way. Thus the footprints were not made when the ceiling was up in the air. Instead, the ceiling was momentarily lying flat on the solid work surface of a precision workstation as this module was built.)

 

CMHUSA cannot build every new home, but the question is, will it build yours? The above vignettes capture the nexus of craftsmanship and systems engineering.     

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