Author Topic: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak  (Read 24867 times)

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Offline wendigo

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12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« on: October 01, 2009, 07:39:45 PM »
Just spent the past 10 days working on our starter cabin, or the micro-chalet as we have begun calling it. Eventually it will become the shed for our "macro-chalet" next to it but for the time being it is our warm dry place for skiing and to stay in while building the next addition.
I started off by combing books and the web for information and found this site to be particularly helpful. I came in to this with no real building experience.
The first 6 days I was by myself, with nothing but a hammer a whole bunch of nails, and a generator to run the rip saw. Had plenty of rain and playing with tarps, learned a lot, and don't think I have made any mistakes that will have too serious of consequences.

The micro has 2x6 walls, 8' walls, and an 8' loft, that doubles as collar ties for the rafters.
So far all of the construction materials, not including tools, comes to ~$2400.
To date I have learned:
1. I am not impressed with pier blocks and will not use them for anything other than decks in the future.
2. I prefer plywood to OSB, mostly due to weather-ability.
3. A nail gun would greatly speed up the sheathing process.
4. Building this has been fun, though tiring.

day 1
show up after driving all day and start digging/set up for covering materials etc.


driveway - needs some gravel


day 2
used pier block on gravel for the foundation, the structure is on 3 PT 4x8 skids so it can be moved/raised/lowered later as needed.



day 3
used 3/4" CDX for the subfloor


first wall is up


second wall is up, this has the "large" window in it, used double 2x10s for the header


day 4 & 5
third wall


and the fourth wall, this wall was heavy as it has a 6'6" header in it to eventually use the structure as a shed with a large opening. for the time being I have a 36" door and 2/0-2/0 window in there.


started putting up some of the common rafters, mostly in order to hang tarps due to plenty of rain.

day 6
starting to look like an actual structure! more of the common rafters in. my fair lady helper showed up today so I sheathed and cutout the front wall to make it look nicer.


day 7 & 8
barge rafters, and gable ends really slowed things down due to all the cuts and thinking I had to do. started sheathing the rood as well


day 9
sheathing the gable ends and putting on the metal roof - I had no metal roofing experience before this, the fellow at the local hardware store was a huge help answering questions.


day 10
wrapping in felt installing the lower windows and doors, oh I also built an out house - forgot to get a picture of it


finally enjoying a 5 minute time-out


haven't even gotten to stay in it yet as we then jumped in the truck and drove the 14 hours home.

left it as seen for the winter. still need to finish wrapping, add the upstairs windows (one on each gable end), wire and insulate, add siding (probably board and batten) and run stove pipe through the roof. but it will do for now.






Offline ListerD

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2009, 08:05:40 PM »
Looks good!  [cool]

Keep the pictures coming!
“We shape our dwellings, and afterwards our dwellings shape us” -- Winston Churchill

Offline MountainDon

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2009, 08:44:27 PM »
What a great amount of work in a short time. Too bad we'll have to wait for spring to see more.   :D
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn’t mean it is good design.

If you didn't have the time or money to do it right in the first place, when will you get the time and money to fix it?

Offline Arizona Highlander

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2009, 10:32:29 PM »
Way to go! 10 days and a ton got done.
I am looking forward to when you resume.
 [cool]
Gathering info here on Country Plans while in awe of other members skills.
Goal is to start a small 15x15 in the Spring of 2015.

Offline Yonderosa

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2009, 06:13:21 AM »
I'm very impressed, especially with "no real building experience."

Your fascia looks nice and straight, the plywood is aligned, structure neat and tight.  Well done!
http://theyonderosa.blogspot.com/

"The secret to life is to be alive.  To live ultimately by one's own hand and one's own independent devices." -Ted Nugent

Offline poppy

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2009, 08:39:27 AM »
 w* to the madness.

Nice to see someone building a square cabin.  Looks good.

Curious as to why you don't like pier blocks.  It appears that you have a very stable foundation there.

Offline wildcottonroad

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2009, 08:48:27 AM »
So, where is your place located in AK? I would have said SEAK if you were concerned about rain, but then you said 14 drive, so that eliminates about 99.9% of the places down there. 

I've got 10 acres on the Kenai and start the build next year.  The big plan is for a 20X30 but we are also starting with a smaller cabin/shed like you.

Where did you get your building supplies?  I agree with plywood over OSB, but its hard the beat the price difference.  Especially when you look at the cost of things in AK vice the lower 48.

Can't wait to see the progress next year.

Jay

Offline wendigo

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2009, 09:33:13 AM »
The cabin is in Haines, we live in Anchorage. Hence the long drive.
I used the adjustable pier blocks but when everything was said done they were still wobbly. I ended up bracing them with some pressure treated 4x4 that are plunged into the soil at about a 30 degree angle. If the micro wasn't essentially on skids I would have just put in sonotube piers or shallow pads - researching both options for the macro.

The fascia is straight because I left the full length of the rafters on then snapped a line and cut each one off. Worked like a charm.

The building supplies were from Lutak Lumber (Ace Hardware) and weren't too different from Anchorage prices for most items.

Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2009, 10:12:43 AM »
Cool project.  Thanks for posting it.
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

Glenn's Underground Cabin  http://countryplans.com/smf/index.php?topic=151.0

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Offline MountainDon

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2009, 12:06:51 PM »

The fascia is straight because I left the full length of the rafters on then snapped a line and cut each one off. Worked like a charm.


That IS the best way to do rafters. No question.
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn’t mean it is good design.

If you didn't have the time or money to do it right in the first place, when will you get the time and money to fix it?

Offline Yonderosa

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2009, 01:36:38 PM »
The fascia is straight because I left the full length of the rafters on then snapped a line and cut each one off. Worked like a charm.

You would be surprised at how many guys that actually work in the trade don't manage that...  Price and speed are the virtues most choose over quality.  Sadly few appreciate or realize the value craftsmanship.  It's good to see it still matters sometimes.
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Offline waggin

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2009, 02:09:59 PM »
Wow!  Oh, and very inspiring too.  I'm getting ready to start a 12' x 12' myself, hopefully this fall/winter.  With roughly one foot of overhang at the eaves/gable ends, that keeps me just under the 200 sq ft aerial footprint limit w/o permit.  So far I'm leaning toward a single pitch shed roof, but seeing all the space you'll have available above in your loft gives me a little pause.  Mine would also start as a cabin/shed and transition to a shed later.  Good thinking to pre-frame for the large door opening, something I need to mentally bookmark.  I also plan to use PT skids, as I will likely want to move it at some point as I plan to build my "macro" in the future.  I'll look forward to your updates in the spring!   [cool]
If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy. (Red Green)

Offline wendigo

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2010, 06:15:21 PM »
Flashback:

Clearing the property in July 2009

This may take a while


The chainsaw got in a bit of work


Lots of lopping too


Operation headquarters


Starting to clear out


Now we are getting somewhere


The road in


and the tree that would not fall


smoke rolled in from some fires in Canada


Makes for even harder work, but nice sunsets



Flash forward to March 2010

The steep roof did its job (this was a low snow year - very low by some accounts)


Outhouse was still standing too


First thing we insulated the loft


Then we put in some heat


We dropped in a temporary cook area as well.


Little more interior view


We got everything insulated, wired, and the heat in, plus managed to drag some flooring etc. down there for the next time we are there working.

Oh, the skiing was great too!

Offline eddiescabin

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #13 on: April 05, 2010, 07:53:21 PM »
Wendigo, lookin' good!  What kind of skiing are you doing there, does it involve hiking and skiing down?  Big snow still here in Cali, Kirkwood is epic and some buddy's climbed/skiied down  the Cross/Mt Telac (Tahoe). 

Offline lonelytree

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2010, 02:36:57 AM »
Logistics must be tough driving from Anchorage to Haines!!! It was (and is) bad enough to drive to the Glennallen area. It looks like a great area! I settled on the fishing and exploring VIA boat for my selection.

Mike

Offline wendigo

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #15 on: April 07, 2010, 10:47:29 AM »
Wendigo, lookin' good!  What kind of skiing are you doing there, does it involve hiking and skiing down?  Big snow still here in Cali, Kirkwood is epic and some buddy's climbed/skiied down  the Cross/Mt Telac (Tahoe). 

Yes, we AT ski all the time (Oct - May). If we time the weather perfect down there we will occasionally jump in a helicopter, but that is a rare treat!

Offline spangrude

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #16 on: August 14, 2010, 09:33:48 AM »
Hey, Wendigo - my husband and I are inspired by your project.  Do you have any more "after" photos you could share or email to us?
Thanks, Kim

Offline thinkprepared

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #17 on: September 27, 2011, 05:23:17 AM »
It's perfect for what I want to build in Vermont. Do you have a materials list?

Thanks

Offline duncanshannon

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #18 on: September 29, 2011, 04:10:53 PM »
great looking place.  are you guys still around? did you ever start your macro-building?

how many person hours do you estimate you had into the place in the first 10 days?
Home: Minneapolis, MN area.  Land: (no cabin yet) Spooner, WI area.  Plan: 20x34 1 1/2 Story. Experience Level: n00b. 
Build Thread: http://countryplans.com/smf/index.php?topic=10784.0

Offline NM_Shooter

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #19 on: September 30, 2011, 09:33:42 AM »
Man... I really admire you folks who build and stay way out.  I think I'm isolated until I see something like this!
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Offline wendigo

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #20 on: October 03, 2011, 10:35:56 AM »
We have the siding on the micro


and also have built the macro and have it sided (mostly) as well. Rough sawn spruce board and batten from trees a few miles away.









thinkprepared - i could work up a materials list, but it will take a few as orders get mixed a bit due to building the macro simultaneously.


Offline online4abit

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Re: 12x12 cabin/shed in ak
« Reply #21 on: September 13, 2017, 02:11:35 PM »
Your post is excellent and thorough.  Would you consider fixing the photos?   They were immensely helpful for a novice :)