Sunday, June 10, 2012

And it starts!

It was a slow beginning as I took Memorial Day weekend to level and measure the trailer and to pick up the pressure treated 2x4s from Slutsky's Lumber. 

(Slutsky's in Ellenville is a small operation with a big heart and great quality lumber, and what I am not able to get reclaimed will most likely be gotten there. My goal is to never step foot into a home depot type store for this project  1. Because I am trying to buy local out of principle 2. I have cried at big box hardware stores before and often leave without what I need after an hour of wandering around.) 

No planning or reading of other tiny houses can completely prepare you for the start. This weekend I learned that every trailer is definitely unique and requires unique solutions. For example, after talking to the spray foam insulation guys, I decided to forego the aluminum flashing on the bottom. This way closed-cell insulation can be sprayed from the bottom at the same time as the walls. Bonus too is that I don't have to think about plumbing quite yet. Also, due to the spacing of the metal crossbeams I decided to bolt my joist vertically and directly to the trailer, with "floating" joists in-between, making the spacing about 13.5" on center. 



First step was to notch the rim joists so they sit flush against the outside of the trailer, and then the circular saw to notch them around wheel wells and at the ends.




The joists are drilled vertically, clamped, re-drilled, counter-sunk, and bolted. Originally thought I could use galvanized carriage bolts... that is until I snapped two of them. So after a quick trip to the hardware store for stainless steel (so they don't react to the pressure treated wood), I was able to bolt it all down.


To seal the gap in the wheel wells my father helped bend aluminum, and then we put some copper flashing in-between to avoid corrosion with the pt wood.
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Over Memorial Day weekend I had been pretty much lifting stuff solo as I fumbled through the beginning steps, but my friend Margaret and my brother came to the rescue the next weekend to help finish installing the "floating" joist. My brother welded metal braces to the trailer while Margaret and I screwed and bolted everything together.



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Margaret 

My niece learning how to weld.


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