Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Forward progress.......

So here I am.....sitting in Cincinatti.......realizing that I have been neglecting my blog. So here is an update.

I could not wait for my friend to get the sliding glass door out of his house (and into mine) before I left so I bought one at the local junk store for a hundred bucks. It is a year old and in perfect shape. It's a bit smaller than the freebie but that's OK. It is installed and looks amazing. The building is buttoned up and waiting for me to get back and to get to work. I brought the new "new" stove up to Cincy with me and plumbed it to run off a 20lb tank. It was pretty expensive to get all the bits but it will work in the cabin so that's great. The output BTU's seems a little low, possibly the wrong regulator so that will need to be addressed. Here's some photo's....

for a month

So I am in Cincy for a month. Progress on the Shack will commence after Christmas. Happy Holidays!!!!!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Some tiny house items that I may add..

I have a small RV shower pan that a friend was going to use in a school bus conversion. This will be the basis for my shower. You will have to step up and in but it has a tiny footprint and should work ok in the tiny bathroom. I have been thinking a lot about utilities. I have already decided to run 12v wiring for the RV lights that I bought. I would like to run gas too.... I have three LP fixtures (stove, heater, and I plan on getting an on-demand hot water heater for the shower. I would like to have just on gas hook-up outside. The plan is to plumb the back wall with gas pipe with a section going around the front of the house to where the heater will live. here is a link to the shower..

Water will be stored in rain collection barrels outside and a 12v on demand pump will provide the water pressure to turn the heater on. I would like to figure out a way to divert this hot water to a kitchen faucet too....hmmmmmmm I may have to buy two of these. One for the shower and one for the sink.

The heater I plan on getting is a 3 panel propane heater with a thermostat. I plan on leaving this heater on low all the time to keep the house from freezing. With a thermostat it will only run when the temp inside dips. I intend to use the wood stove for heat but since a fire only lasts a couple of hours the propane heater should make mornings bearable. here is the heater....

I plan on supplying these fixtures from a 100lb tank outside. Ideally I will get a month out of a tank but I will keep a couple of 20 pound tanks filled just in case....

that's it for now....

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

takin' care of business..

So I have been working away at the shack and my new job. I am leaving on Sunday for my winter job in Cinncinatti and I have been trying to get the building dries in. The side walls are up (with old chipboard) and the windows are in. The windows work....sort of. Putting them in racked them a bit and they don't open and close very well but that's ok. I will shave where they are sticking next summer. Some bits came to finally make the stove pipe work right. That has been a chore. My stove has not been made in quite awhile and it uses 5" inch stove pipe (uncommon). I thought that it used 4" and ordered a bunch of that last season......nope. So last week I bought a section of 5" pipe and a 5"-4" reducer. Everything fits and when I go through the roof it should be right on. getting through the roof is going to be tricky but I should be ok with a metal box, brackets,  flashing, and an angled roof flashing. I will do that when I get back after I put up drywall.
 My to do list before I leave.....
1. Finish upper end wall (I should have enough chip board to piece it together)
2. Frame a table for the stove 2'x2'
3. Get a new window for the front (might have a freebie) and install
4. Get and Install the sliding glass door.

If I don't get the door I will buy a sheet of plywood and board the opening up until I get back. I am getting a freebie but it is taking forever. I would like to have the outside at least roughed in so I can work from the inside out when I get back.

I have been looking at the floor and I will have to put new sub-floor down before I put flooring in. This will be done last but it's on my my mind because my buddy put laminates down in his schoolie last night and it looks amazing. I think a layer of blue foam will go down too.....extra insulation can't hurt!

Here are some pics.......

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

lowered expectations....

so I have not gotten nearly enough done for my liking. My day job distracts me from the cabin build and the cabin build distracts me from my day job and I am getting nothing done. The windows are coming along. I have a coat of paint on them and though I could have made them nicer they will look fine. Tomorrow I will frame them out and finish painting and assembling them. The bits that I bought at the junkyard are OK. The stove should work and I am starting to really enjoy the golden yellow color. The 12v lights should all be fine. The RV electric service and the fresh water supply box were garbage. Both got trashed. I did salvage a nice 25' heavy duty power cord from the power supply so it wasn't a total loss. I was temped to fix it (the transformer was fried) but I van buy a new one that charges my house batteries for a couple hundred so I think I will save myself the effort since the part number on the transformer did not cross reference. I have a small 110v to 12v converter that came with a crappy thermo-electric cooler which I may be able to test things.
  I really need to get the shack dried in before I leave for Cincinatti so I gotta get to work! I can do the interior while its cold out but I shudder at the thought of putting siding up in 20 degree weather! This weekend I will push....get the windows done, sliding door put in, run wire for 12v lighting and get the siding up......even if I have to hodge podge the old and left over sheets together. I plan on re siding the whole thing down the line so it just needs to survive this winter......and keep me warm. More to come.

Junkyard finds...

...So the end result of this project will hopefully be an off grid cabin on a few acres of land. I have been thinking about the electrical system a good deal (as I pick away at the rest of it) and I have decided that the house will have to be wired for 12v. I cannot stand exposed wires and extension cords so this means in-wall wiring. Today I went to the junk yard (a mile away) and grabbed 5 12v conversion van reading lights. 4 are single lamp and 1 is a double. These will be placed throughout the cabin. The double over the stove, a single over the bed, 2 singles in the living area and a single someplace else. I intend to use in-wall wiring (safety first) so I can re-wire to 110v if it ever comes to that. I have these same lights in my van and they are plenty bright in a small space. I plan to augment the lighting with some oil lamps (which I love). I also got a small card table for the vandaminium that holds 4 glasses!s
    Also, at the same junk yard, I found an old pop-up with a 10 gallon water tank (rectangle with all the fittings) and a 3 burner propane stove. I am headed out now to strip them out. There is a sink with a hand pump too but the color is pretty awful (matches the stove but I can paint that) so I don't know. maybe I will grab it.
   So I today I am getting the following...

5 12v RV reading light fixtures
1 10 gallon RV water tank with fittings
1 3 burner surface mount propane stove
1 sink with hand pump

All for $30. needless to say I am excited!

Wiring the lights will have to happen before drywall but in the end it will be worth the added expense!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

some windows and a sliding door... I have to wait another day for the sliding door but that's OK. I found 5 32"x32" windows at the local salvage store. They are old windows, single pane and uninsulated which is not ideal but I could not pass them up for the price. I will have to put plastic over them this winter to increase the R value but I think that they will look amazing  high on the rear wall. I plan to use three or four stretching the entire length of the back wall. I would like to find a way to hinge a couple too so I can use them to vent the house in the hot summers. Next weeks project is to frame these in!! Here are some pics (and sketches) of my plans so far....

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


so I got the rear and side walls framed up and tomorrow I will start the new sheeting on the rear wall, getting ready for insulation. The building is definitely out of plumb but I have a crazy plan to use a tractor and a buttload of screws to get everything lined and more to come!!

nothing is square....

So in trying to frame out the side wall I have discovered that nothing is plumb in the shack. The side wall is more of a parallelogram than a rectangle and the knee wall kicks in an inch or two at one end. I will need to get these lines much straighter if I want the drywall to look good. Also, the studs are at weird intervals on the front wall which is not that big a deal since I plan to cut most of them out to install the sliding glass door. Oh well, back to work.