29 May '12, 6pm

Green Building Q&A: Double wall with cellulose and zip sheathing in the NW?

I'm slowly getting rid to build a house in Seattle (zone 4c) and have a wall system I think would work well, but wanted feedback: Cladding (hardi-panel) on furring (rainscreen) on building-wrap (tyvek or similar) on zip sheathing (taped) over a 12" thick 2x4 double wall (staggered?) filled with dense-pack cellulose with drywall finish. I know the zip system is a WRB but I would be using it mostly as an air-barrier and preferring the mechanical joint of lapped building wrap to a chemical joint of the zip tape (although that would be a backup). I think for the cost of the house it would be a small up-charge. I was wondering about the zip system, though: why is it based on OSB rather than ply? I know (especially in the NW) OSB is riskier than plywood but does the zip system eliminate that worry? Also, I was thinking about adding 2 wythes (correct use?) of counter-batten 2x2s ...

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