My 15.75 x 30 Jemez Cabin

Started by MountainDon, December 20, 2006, 02:03:09 AM

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glenn kangiser

Dang PEG -- you had a big one.    :o

Actually I flew my plane through the center of that one -- when resting about 6 years ago.  Still had smoke coming out of it. :)
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

Glenn's Underground Cabin

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Well, I was living in Bellingham when that volcano blew!  :o :-/

You will know the truth & the truth will set you free


After getting the door wall all framed in I thought I'd try out a couple of different siding materials to see which one Karen liked best. The material on the full side is a nylon reinforced vinyl product. The color is dyed into the material. This product was made in China. The product just around the corner on the door wall is a USA manufactured man made forest fiber product. Stamped right on one flap it states "Proudly manufactured in Chicago by Barney & Crew". It's a more green material than the vinyl so undoubtedly would be preferred by many. It even contains some post consumer recycled material; even greener. The downside is that it does require post installation waterproofing or the material will deteriorate badly.

All right I've been funning ya'll!  We had more of the same rainy weather as the previous week. The day that photo was taken we had 2 hours of steady drizzle with a 10 minute deluge in the first half hour, followed by uncertain weather until dinner time. I had cut the T&G siding to installation lengths.

We had been staining the T&G siding prior to installation (both sides, edges and ends to minimize warpage) when it began thundering and the sky getting darker.

We moved the stained boards inside the gazebo (floor protected with OSB cutoffs). We hung three tarps, there are 2 other tarps on the 2 unseen sides. Having used all the tarps on hand, I grabbed the next best thing, a knocked down cardboard box we carted something in. Of course I used galvanized nails.

The stained boards ended up without any water spotting so it was a worthwhile endeavor.

I made the step from a pine we cut

Here's the step with temporary blocks supporting it

The walls now have the lower T&G siding installed and are now all screened in, the door in place, trim installed.

One of the roof quadrants has the shingles in place (GAF Timberline, slate grey/green)

We still have to stain the rafter ends and the underside of the roof sheathing at the eves. Not sure how the underside of the roof inside the gazebo will done. Stain grey??  The idea is to try to blend into the forest. Thinking of doing mortared stone/rock skirting around the bottom. Not sure yet.
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn't mean it is good design.

glenn kangiser

Looks good Don.  You could temporarily dry stack some stone around the base as you collect it and see what you think of it. :-?

We have quite a group of people in Fresno who just live in the cardboard box.  Tarps are a bonus. :)
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

Glenn's Underground Cabin

Please put your area in your sig line so we can assist with location specific answers.

John Raabe

Sweet little spot in the woods.
None of us are as smart as all of us.


I had someone send me an IM with a question about how I was going to build the alcove in one of the end walls of my 14x26 plan. I thought I'd explain here so all could see and so anyone could comment/question my method.

Here's the floor plan as shown way back on page 3 of this thread.

Back there is also a drawing showing a proposed foundation/floor girders/joists layout. I've changed it a little (again). I left the good drawings up in the RV on the site  :'(  so here's a quick and dirty rough drawing followed by a word picture.

I've done away with the third girder across the end. Instead the two main 6x12 girders are extended full length of the floorplan. The floor joists under the main portion of the cabin will still be 2x10 on 16 inch centers for (1) stiffness suitable for ceramic tile and (2) extra insulation. At the end where there will be a 5 foot wide by 4 foot deep alcove for the wood stove (inside) and a front porch (outside) the joists will change to 2x8's. (FYI the wood stove is a small one, 240 lbs., equivalent of a heavy person.) I may space them on 12 inch centers for absolute best stiffness... dunno yet. ??   :-/  It's only a couple extra pieces considering it's only a 4 foot width.

In the alcove area I will place ripped 2x pieces on top of the 2x8's to build them up to the same height as the 2x10 joists. That will make the interior floor come out at the same height in the alcove. In the porch area the 2x decking material will be screwed directly to the 2x8 joists.

Why this way? When you add up the thicknesses of the interior floor; 3/4 T&G subfloor plus 1/4 inch plywood with ceramic tile, or whatever, the interior floor will be slightly higher than the 2x exterior decking material. The full length 6x12 girders will provide solid support and there will be no need to worry about the strength, alignment, etc of hanging the alcove and porch on the end.

Those are my thoughts. Anyone see any big holes in the plan? Thanks.
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn't mean it is good design.



 The only hole I see is those joist , IF they rot are connected to your sub floor.

I've done a few repairs  here in PNW / Whidbey where builders have use the main house joists sort of like your doing , a some what cantilever, the water follows the joist back into the house the resulting repair is much more complicated IF that happens .

You pretty dry , under cover of a roof , etc so maybe you'll be OK . Up here I would not build it that way , YMMV.

I wouldn't worry about the stove weight either as long as it remains "light" as you've stated.

 On a remodel we're doing the old home owner, HOMO for short ,  ;D had a wood stove , pretty normal one , by a stairwell , he's a logger / sudo builder . Nice stove , BUT he added a 8" round 1/4" well sleeve 14' 6" long to the top of the stove for a  stove pipe , he did beef up the floor , added a log / cut off tree under it so that's not "my problem" my problem is getting that friggin pipe out ,

Good old resoursful Roger ( John MTL knows him ) lowered a cable from his boom truck thru the triple wall pipe in the roof , connected to the well pipe and walked the end in the frront door and raised the pipe up into position. Of course now his trucks broken so we gotta rent a big boom truck to reach over the garage and house to lower said pipe , about 800 LBS's or so down and out the front door , what a PITA  ;D The new owner wants a gas stove  ::)
When in doubt , build it stout with something you know about .

glenn kangiser

Sounds like something I'd do, PEG. ;D

Don, nice drawing.  Lots of numbers and call outs - etc.  Good job. ;D

"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

Glenn's Underground Cabin

Please put your area in your sig line so we can assist with location specific answers.


So maybe I'd use PT 2x8's for those few joists where the weather might get at them.  ??

That would help the joist, but not the subfloor......... :-/
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn't mean it is good design.


QuoteSo maybe I'd use PT 2x8's for those few joists where the weather might get at them.  ??

That would help the joidt, but not the subfloor......... :-/

 Ya see my point eh Mtn. D  ;) Jest invitin trouble IMO, YMMV ;D



I've been rolling this around my brain. PEG, I can get into enough trouble without extending a special invitation.  :(  Water will find it's way where ya don't want it sooner or later unless ya remember to think like water all the time.  

What we have here is another case of unintended consequences....  Good thing it's all just on paper and/or in my head.   :)  

So, back to my original plan/method. Copy of drawing below...  with more word picture below that. BTW, that strange bumpout on the long side isn't there any more. Old drawing.

The main support 6x12 girders will stop at the point where the alcove and porch begin. See below...  The joists for the alcove and porch floor will be hung off that end joist (doubled) using some of Mr. Simpson's finest hangers. The alcove joists will be 2x10 like the main cabin floor. The porch joists will be 2x6's. The outboard end of those joists will be supported on a third girder that runs across the end of the cabin. Probably be a built up 4x8 with three footings/piers/posts just like the other ones under the main girders.


Thats looks better , I might suggest running the two beams out the added  was it 4' and tie the beams together / hang the two main off the thrid crossing beam . You could transition the one beam that would be sort of out in the weather to PT  back under the house over a pier of course , or have a metal cap flashing bent up  to fit over the top   so water would be forced to drip clear of the wood.

I'd like that beam / floor system to link up / become one unit working as a whole instead of three beams  some what independant of each other.

I might also go with 2x8 PT to reduce the step out of the door , you'd maybe have to "fir up " the beam top some as well , a little 1 1/2" step out of the door really helps with wind blown rain getting under the door jamb legs / sills . rememeber  some of this was caused by a little wind blown rain  ,



I had thought of having a cap flashing installed over the 'weather"beam as you described.

I like the idea of the beams becoming a team, so to speak.

As for a little rain causing problems... when I had the roof on the house replaced with a new metal roof the roofers found a spot on the back patio roof where the original construction crew screwed up. I never thought to take a picture but, basically here in the dry desert, there was still enough rain so that when a little water would run down the roof and find it's way onto the top of this 4x6 beam it would sit there, soak in and so on and caused some rot. It was simple enough when they had the old roofing removed, for me to go up there, cut back the sheathing and replace the beam with a new one. The chain saw and the PC Tiger came in handy there.   :)   Chain saw!! I sound like I learned my carpentry from Glenn.   ;D  


Ole Glenn , he does like that chainsaw doesn't he  ;D

I'm doing a repair right now on  a old farm house , window sills that failed. one window is  a old window , old VG Fir window sash , frames and sills all painted VG Fir. The other  two have vinly windows "stopped into" older wood frames , one window is old VG Fir the other is 1960's VG Fir. So a good range of ages on "similar " woods. I think I'll be doing a thread on it,  the repair, mainly to see if I can write a article that I can sell to a magizine like Fine Home building.

Point is a little water goes a long way once it finds a way in , the solution is to keep it out the first time .  



Dudes - thanks --- you just reminded me that I forgot to buy the Ryobi Chainsaw module for my 18 volt set the other day.  Coming soon to a hatchet job near you -- Glenn's 18V chainsaw massacre. ;D


Eh yer never far from our minds , you are sorta like God ya know , with all that adminasstrators power  ;D


That really warms my heart (and my chainsaw) PEG.  To hear that coming from you --- well it almost ...sniff sniff.... almost makes me cry.  :'(

Damn -- there you go PEG -- are ya happy now? :-?  Ya went and made me get in touch with my feminine side.   >:(  My mamma always told me not to do that. :-/


Spent Friday night thru this AM up in the mountains. Three noteworthy things...
1.  Got the roof all completed except for the cupola (yet to be built) and an unconventional addition, I'm saving until it's completed.  :)  Also stained the rqafter ends and under the eves.Stained the log step as well.

2.  Began collecting some rocks for the "foundation" wall around the gazebo. Some were gathered from my land, others liberated from the surrounding forest. Used the ATV to haul them.

Do you lichen my rocks?  (I couldn't help myself...sorry about that.)  ::)

3.  About 6 or so this morning the early morning silence was broken by the distinct sound made by a plastic 5 gallon pail being knocked over, right outside the RV wall next to my slowly waking brain. I thought that was strange. Since I was about to get up and bump the thermostat to On (58 degrees inside temp calls for a little warming up before arising. Hey if I got a furnace, I may as well use it.) I lifted the shade and peered outside. Sitting there a few feet away was a big brown (colored) Black Bear, about 200 pounds I'd say.  :o One paw was stuffed inside the 5 gallon plastic pail that used to hold bird seed. Seed was all over the ground. At my surprised shout it looked up at me, casting a disdainful look my way. The seed must have smelled better than it tasted as the bear didn't seem too interested in it. I was too surprised to think of grabbing my camera. Instead I grabbed my .45. Peering back out the window I saw it was ambling slowly down the slope. I watched it disappear. The rest of the day was completely uneventful compared to the start.

Speaking to my neighbor I learned that he had an bear visit him early one morning last week as well.   :-/


Thanks for the story, Don.  It was beary interesting. :)

I couldn't bear to sleep through that.  If he were to bear all his weight on the side of the RV he might barely be able to make it inside-- if he tore an almost large enough opening.  

If he did you might want to be wearing pajamas.  I know I'd hate to be bare if the side was ripped out of my RV.  

It would probably be hard to bear the embearassment. :-/


Spent the weekend up in the mtns. Didn't do too much constructive. We gathered more rocks for the gazebo. Did a haphazard trial layout, dry. We may go dry stack for the finished product.  :-/ Thought of installing some 1/4 inch hardware cloth in the opening and using it as back support for the rock as well as preempting mouse infiltration.

Had company up, did some hiking, grilled some elk burgers, saw some wild turkey strolling across one end of the land.Season starts in a week. We found our very own "Hatch" If you're a Lost fan you know what it is.  :)

This one didn't require explosives. (covers an old well... saw water, not sure how deep)

After feasting on the burgers, my own special potato salad recipe, bean salad, chips, beer it began to rain. Slowly the rain picked up, got harder. Thunder in the distance, getting closer. As we were discussing the merits of moving to the RV and the home made fresh peach cobler, now or in a little while, our minds were made up for us.

FLASH-BANG!!! A bolt of lightnig with immediate thunder response. I thought I saw something flying through the air where the flash came from. We made for the RV. It rained like crazy for a half hour and tapered off as darkness fell.

The next morning here's what I found, 150 feet from the gazebo where we were seated.

The lightning stripped a section of bark from the fir tree. At the base it knocked a large section of bark free and dug a small hole. Powerful stuff. We'll have to see how the fir fares. Maybe more firewood?   :-/


That was a close one, Don.  If it had hit you, you likely would have been barbecue, not to mention it probably would have blown your shoes off. Scarey. :o

I like the drystack rocks.  Easy to do something with.  I just went to an old mine today, up about a 30 to 40 degree slope and there were curving drystack walls of rock about 4 feet high and a few hundred feet long -- been getting hit with seasonal stream torrents for a hundred or more years and still standing just fine.


Yikes, that WAS close...  just attended a 2 day trauma course - there's not always a lot that can be done for a well landed lightning bolt  :'(


That's the closest I've ever come to a lightning strike.

Unless you count the time I was hiking on a Colorado ridge. The clouds were rolling in fast and my companion's hair was standing on end.  :o I was getting "pin pricks" on my ankles. Later I figured out it was probably little "lightning bolts" from the static buildup firing thru my socks from the metal eyelets in my boots. Walked away from that though.  ;D

The real bummer that day was a mysterious loss of the brakes on the CJ5. The pedal went right to the floor :o  just as we reached the high point of some 13,000 feet! Fluid all okay. After the hike up and down the ridge I tried the brakes and the pedal was hard!!! Very puzzling. We made the descent of some 5000 feet to base camp, very slowly, with my friends CJ8 tied to my rear bumper. We trailered the CJ home and tore into the hydraulics and never found a problem. There was a little sedimet I flushed from the master cylinder. Totally puzzling!

Back to the weekends lightning for a moment.... I do believe I'm going to attach a rod atop the gazebo once I have the cupola on. As well the cabin roof peak will also receive a couple rods and ground cables/rods.

When up on the forest service lookout tower I noticed it was equipped with 4 lightninbg rods each with it's own braided stainless steel conductor and ground rod.


That's a good idea  :) .  One time my brother & I were playing out in the yard at our farm in Ohio (I was probably 3 or 4).  A thunder storm was coming in, all of a sudden a lightning bolt flashed in a circle maybe 3-4 feet from us.  Didn't hurt us or anything else, but we sure were surprised!