Monthly Archives: April 2012

Tiny House Progress: Exterior Siding is Finished!

We finally finished the exterior siding.  So nice to be done with that.  The galvanized metal z-bar really added a lot of time to the installation, but we like how it’s all flush, whereas lap siding would project out.

Here’s a picture of me installing the LAST piece of siding:

Shane also got the last window installed and trimmed out.

And we’ve installed about half of the metal roofing.

So now we’re onto the task of installing the insulation, which is not easy!  We’re using hard foam panels, and it really makes you realize why most buildings utilize soft, flexible fiberglass batt insulation!  But the foam will give us a much higher R-value and won’t settle with any movement from traveling down the road.  And it was about a third the cost of paying someone to spray foam the house.  As we’re cutting the foam to fit tight into each and every wall and ceiling cavity we’re both wondering if it would have been worth the $1,200 extra to pay someone to do it for us…

After the insulation is in we’ll start on the interior drywall and interior casework and built-ins.  Then it will start feeling like a real house!

Hope all is well with everyone!  We’ll keep you posted as we continue working.

– Carrie

Categories: Tiny House Construction | Tags: , , | 7 Comments

Tiny House: Construction Progress – Roofing

Well, we started installing our roofing on our Tiny House and it looks great!  Metal (steel) Pro-panel roofing in a burnished slate color.  While steel might not often be thought of as a green or eco-friendly product (because it is so sharp?) it is actually a decent product due to it’s high recycleability.  Most steel is recycled and there is very little lost in the recycling process (so it’s not just “down-cycled”).  It is also durable leading to longevity, and no need to replace it with more materials.

Blah, blah, blah, here’s a couple pictures:

Yesterday we trekked to Phoenix and picked up some closed-cell foam insulation to use for insulating the walls and ceiling of our house.  We wanted to use spray foam but the quote came in SO high that we just couldn’t justify it.  $1,600 for the spray foam, and we paid less than $400 for the foil-backed foam boards.  A craigslist find that didn’t seem to be stolen…  haha.  Sometimes you wonder when you’re buying building materials from someone who has a lot of them from an unidentified source.  They appear to be “seconds” with slight voids.

Was a tall, light load coming back from Phoenix:

We also went to Ikea!  Ikea!  (I really like going to Ikea.)  We ended up returning the kitchen sink we had purchased because it was WAY too big.  31″ wide with the drainboard.  It was so shiny…but for the price of that kitchen sink we got a new kitchen sink and all our upper open shelving for the kitchen, as well as hanging racks for the bathroom and some scissor extension mirrors!  Great deals.  Can’t wait until we can start installing the interior components.

Work on our tiny house is squeezed in between our real jobs…  Currently I am working on space plans for a Waldorf School in Flagstaff, getting ready to start construction documents on a residence in Prescott, random drafting for a landscape architect, and, on Thursday, I’ll be driving a diesel bus down to Tucson taking Ecosa ecological design students on a field trip.  I attended the Ecosa Institute and am also a faculty member there.  We’ll be touring Tucson with Brad Lancaster, a rainwater harvesting genius in Arizona.

Okay, hope all is well in everyone’s world.  (it’s the same world as mine, right?  haha)

take care,


Categories: Tiny House Construction | Tags: , , | 11 Comments

Tiny House Progress: More Exterior Siding

Progress progress.  I wanted to update you on Shane’s hand injury and our progress on the exterior siding and a current time-lapse photo of the Tiny House construction progress.

We worked on installing siding all day yesterday and it is looking really great.  We like the galvanized z-bar flashing between sheets – a flat siding “rainscreen” type application that works really well on our tiny house.  Like we mentioned before, we decided to use a readily available compressed cedar chip siding – TruWood I think it’s called.  It’s light, easy to cut, easy to install, and thinner than real wood planks.

Here’s an overall photo of the siding installation process:

We also took the masking tape off of one window and our glossy white trim is looking very nice!  (photo above.)  We installed the front door, deciding to just use galvanized j-mold flashing around that in lieu of more bulky white trim.  Here are a few close-ups of the siding:

the nail heads will be painted over, giving it a smooth, clean plank finish.  The black painted piping visible in the photo above is our propane headed to the propane space heater and propane cooktop in the kitchen.

Here is a short video of construction progress so far:

Okay, so now if you get queasy easily you might not want to scroll down to the next images.  As you may have heard already, Shane cut his knuckle on his right hand on some z-bar flashing Tuesday and we went to the ER to get it stitched up.  the ER doc said the extensor tendon was lacerated and we needed to go to a hand surgeon.  So, we went to the hand doc on Friday morning and the doctor saw how Shane could still lift his finger and said the tendon was fine, slapped a band-aid on it and told him to keep it straight for a month.  Okaaaay….  but the ER doctor said the tendon was lacerated.  Oh.  The hand doc called the ER doc to get the story straight from him.  It is lacerated, almost completely.  So then the hand doc said he needed to operate on it.  After a discussion about malpractice and liability it was agreed that the tendon couldn’t be lacerated completely through or the finger would be hanging limp, and not able to lift up, like it is.  Remembering the ER doc could only see the laceration the flexed position we all agreed that the top of the tendon was cut, but not the bottom, and if kept in a splint, it would heal on it’s own, without surgery.  (which just involves cutting the knuckle open and doing a fancy figure eight stitch through the two ends of the tendon).  So, we paid $30 for a $2 splint and $165 for 20 minutes of the doctor’s time, and we were on our way!

Here’s the cut (and the bandaid the hand doc was going to send us away with first!)

Here’s the splint Shane is using now to keep the finger from flexing:

We had a good laugh with the hand doc about the first splint Shane was given at the ER.  I am trying to think of the right metaphor for the ER compared to the rest of the medical field….  maybe the ER’s splint was like this guy’s toaster:  Which is as awesome story about the cost and difficulty of making a toaster from scratch and how we take technological advances for granted.

Okay, happy Sunday everyone!  Tomorrow we’re headed to buy some surplus insulation and go to IKEA to look for a sink, lighting, etc?, and eat some ebelskivers!  After that we’ll finish the exterior siding, insulate the house, install the roofing, and start on the interior finishes.  Stay posted… we need to finish this month to meet our construction goal of two months total.  We’ll see how badly Shane’s hand injury affects progress.  Maybe I can step it up, get up earlier, and help out more??  While working and bringing home… some bacon.  🙂

take care,

– Carrie

Categories: Tiny House Construction | Tags: , , , , , | 6 Comments

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