Author Topic: Camp foundation  (Read 393 times)

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Offline elainefrommaine

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Camp foundation
« on: August 11, 2019, 09:30:56 AM »
We own a fishing camp in the northern Maine woods built in the 1890s. One story. 18’ x 20’.  The original sills and floor joists were made out of large trees milled on-site (2 sides).  They run 30 inches apart. When the outside joists (sills) were replaced, 4 x 6 dimensioned wood was used to hold up the walls on the long side.  Milled trees were used to hold up the floor joists on those long sides. So on the long sides, there are two sills independent of each other. The outside 4 x 6 holds up the walls and the milled trees hold up the joists. The reason for this double sill approach was that the tongues of the floor joists had rotted.  This foundation is okay, but because the two sills are independent of one another, the camp is always out of level. Our proposed solution is to beef up the 4 x 6 with a 4 x 4 underneath. Then hang 2 x 10s every 16 inches from the newly created 4 x 10s. The inside sills would be eliminated...we could use them to support the 2 x 10s in the middle.  Will this work? I can’t find any information about how to calculate the dimensions of a sill, or rim joist, or whatever you call it. Our camp is canoe accessible only, no electricity. So we want to do it right. Thanks!

Offline akwoodchuck

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Re: Camp foundation
« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2019, 07:53:59 AM »
Sounds like a pickle alright....I will just say that 4x4 + 4x6 does not necessarily = 4x10.....what type of foundation? Pics would help...
"The lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne."

Offline ChugiakTinkerer

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Re: Camp foundation
« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2019, 08:43:46 AM »
Welcome to the forum!

I agree, it's definitely helpful to have a picture or sketch.  There is guidance on how to post images in this thread: https://countryplans.com/smf/index.php?topic=15096.0

Is there winter access to the camp?  It might be worth hauling in lumber using a snowmobile and freight sled.  That's how I'm doing things for our remote cabin.  Doing it right means preventing future rot.  What caused the joists to rot in the first place?
My cabin build thread: Alaskan remote 16x28 1.5 story

Offline elainefrommaine

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Re: Camp foundation
« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2019, 02:53:44 AM »
Thanks for the feedback.  Just returned from camp with these photos.  As you can see, the original sills were huge trees - big enough to accommodate both the tongues of the floor joists and the wall posts beside the joists.  We are not worried about rot.  The tongues of the joists were soft because the sills were exposed to the elements for 100 plus years - the exterior shingles did not come down over the sills.  So there was water infiltration.  But the camp sits on ledge with about a foot of duff/pine needles over it.  So rot isn't an issue.  We cannot access the camp in the winter - but a friend who was an iron worker and rigger says he can help us get the materials across the pond with an electric winch, block and tackle and come-along.  (Yes, we have a generator.) Wayne at the lumber store says a good alternative to a 4X4 would be two twenty-foot 2X6's with 1/2 inch plywood in between.  Certainly those would be easier to carry if we assembled them onsite.  And someone suggested we should use glue between the existing 4X6 and whatever we put under it.  Really?  Oh, forgot to say that currently, both sills are being supported by posts on the same concrete pier.  Yes, we hauled over 22 bags of concrete and poured piers - 4 on the long side...two corners and two in between.
Photos on Shutterfly:
https://link.shutterfly.com/o5aW9VKncZ

Offline akwoodchuck

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Re: Camp foundation
« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2019, 07:30:53 PM »
Yikes... :D
"The lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne."

Offline Don_P

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Re: Camp foundation
« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2019, 04:20:50 AM »
The beam sizes you are talking about are probably too small, depth creates strength. I suspect you are looking at a built up triple 2x10 or 2x12. Plywood and glue do nothing to make a built up beam stronger, they can make it a bit stiffer.

Old log homes were sometimes built with the ground floor independent of the log walls, it was "floating" inside and could be independently leveled. On a couple I simply dug down to footing depth and poured a wide, deep footing and brought up a rock/concrete wall about 2' thick, wide enough to support the wall logs and the floor system. It ended up with a ledge inside that supported a treated board under the floor sill and continued up outside to a piece of treated that supported the log walls.

Offline Dave Sparks

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Re: Camp foundation
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2019, 06:41:32 AM »
Double Yikes ;)
"we go where the power lines don't"

Offline akwoodchuck

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Re: Camp foundation
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2019, 07:52:58 AM »
Your idea will work, except I'd do what Don suggested, and replace all with a 3-ply 2x12 beam, 2x12 floor joists, 6x6 posts down to your piers or pads or what have you....some bracing would be nice to see as well....
"The lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne."

 

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