Other Activities > Other Adventures

Planning a tiny home cabin, looking for input

(1/6) > >>

We bought some undeveloped property last summer on a river on the Olympic Penninsula, in Grays Harbor County.  The 10 year plan is to get power, a well, and a cabin built on septic. 

In the short term, we've enjoyed camping, but I would like a more permanent structure for the next few years until we build, as it would be more comfortable staying out there with our young kids (3 and 10 months old) in the winter months.  I'm thinking of building a 10x20 foot shed-style building that we can camp out of in the short term, and use as a storage building down the road.  The building will not be plumbed.

For the framers out there, I'm thinking of full 8' studs for an 8'4.5" back wall, w/ an additional 4' 3" wall on the front, single-sloped roof, and putting a loft in the far end about 6'6" off the ground. This should give a loft height of about 5'6" or so at it's highest point. I'm not drywalling the interior, so I'm not worried about the walls being taller than 8'. The whole thing will sit on 4x8 beams I already have on pierblocks.

I'm curious on input on windows, airflow, water-proofing, heating options, conveniences found in small spaces for space utilization, ect.

So for those of you with small cabin experience, what do you like and dislike?  What would you do differently?

When we were young my wife and I bought and lived in a small 8x40 old trailer home for a couple years to get ahead until we could afford something better. We put in a small wood stove that handled the job very well and we saved on not using the electric heating much. I had thought about doing an addon but opted to save the funds for a better home, afterward I'm glad we saved the funds for the better home, but that cheap little trailer sure helped us get ahead.

Some friends of ours built a shop that they lived in until they could afford to build the log home they really wanted, they also used wood heat to save on expenses while saving for the new home, they stayed in the "shouse for about 20 years or a little more. About 10 years ago they built their dream log home and converted the original "shouse" to being a shop.

Here's a thought: If I was going to build a temporary shed home, I think I would use 16' studs on the front so you have good ceiling height in the upper floor and maybe 14' studs on the back side, then put beds along the lower wall. Depending on how wide the shed will be and if you will get snow in that area, you might want a little more pitch for snow to slide off so a little shorter studs might be needed on the back wall.

Right now lumber is cheap again, it's a good time to frame a building. Someday when you get your permanent home built, you could even add another side to the shed and have a good sized shop for storage, maybe even a car garage if you build the first half wide enough.

Good luck however you decide to do it.

When you frame small cabins ALWAYS frame in doors on numerous sides that you just cover until needed. Stay on layout with studs through the doorways. If needed they can be easily be knocked out.

It makes expansion so much easier having the door already in place. Plans change and your cabin should be built for changes.

My biggest regret on my first cabin build. :twocents:

We built a 12x20.cabin on our place and used it for several years until we put in a permanent home. Went ahead and plumbed and wired it simply because it was easier to do while building it. Kind of set it up like the wiring and plumbing in a travel trailer so we could use a generator for power and a 40 gal water tank for water. Put a small bathroom in and used a portable toilet in there and set up made the wife much more willing to stay for a while. I would suggest you get a septic system as soon as possible as some counties are getting very restrictive on them.  You have to think ahead on what the county might be doing on building restrictions if you plan to eventually build a permanent structure. We were able to get things done 10 years ago.that would be much more restrictive now.

First thing I thought of for heat, those diesel heaters, sounds perfect for a 10x20 room. 


[0] Message Index

[#] Next page

Go to full version