Sunday, October 31, 2010

Cabin Building - Day 69

So, here it is October 30th, one day before our drop-dead moving date and we're not moving... yet :)

Firstly, I'm just having too much fun shoveling snow out of my living room... highly entertaining, recommend it to everyone at least once!

Secondly, Lowes says they're delivering our insulation and the doors & windows on Monday... so what the heck, might as well keep going, right?

Thirdly, if we do get it finished and sheathed and insulated and install the doors & windows and get the drywall hung now, before we move in, then we can install cabinets and shelving to put stuff away as we're moving so we're not tripping over piles of crap all over the floor and without having to take it all apart in the spring to fix it all properly.

And lastly, hey... it's snowing... so it's not cold enough to stop building yet. Only wimps and weenies hang up their tool belts before it gets below 0F for the daytime highs :D  If the weather can hold out, so can we.

So anyway, we briefly got the camera working and Gungnir downloaded the pics, so here's a quick update on where things are at with the cabin.

Day 59: These pics were once we got the 4 joists above the posts installed to lock in the header beams. Nothing spectacular, just a PITA.

Day 62: Ken came over with all his nifty toys and we got the remaining loft joists in, the end walls completely framed, and the interior pantry/staircase walls framed. Pay no attention to the ratchet straps holding the northwall plumb... really, that joist is not so bowed that we need the ratchet strap to hold in the proper place until we get the subfloor nailed in. No, no, really, we just thought that a big yellow canvas strap would be an awesome design feature.  And also completely ignore that the beam on the SE corner is still all twisty and canted funny... we're sure it'll all straighten out once we get the roof on and a little weight on it. If not, well, we do have some 6" lag screws that we can use to persuade it to cooperate with the rest of the building.

Day 63-69: Not really much work on the cabin much as we would have liked to get the subfloor down and the rafters started. We had to make a whole bunch of calls to find out the status of orders and deliveries, and since we don't have a phone, that means we spent almost an entire day up at Ken & Sarah's using their phone. Then began hauling all the remaining lumber and materials back to the tent from the various places we stashed them and loading them up on the trailer so we could take them down to the cabin. That got interrupted with the Manley errand day, where we just had to stop in and check in with everyone since so many folks are heading south for the winter.

Then we had a small issue with the Kipor generator not liking to run in the cold so we had to half-choke it, which fouled the plug, which you have to completely disassemble the thing to get to, which then turned out to be 13/16" which is the only plug socket we don't have, so up to get one from Trapper, only to snap the darned lead off while we were reassembling... good thing we still have the Honda! We'd almost gotten finished with the lumber hauling when the Weather Liars started calling for a "storm", so we thought it best to drag back some more of our firewood and get a bunch split up just in case. Which was good, because it started snowing shortly afterwards while we were up checking on Ken & Sarah's dogs since they were up in Fairbanks.

So, finally finished hauling back the last load of lumber and loading up the remaining tongue-and-groove flooring onto the trailer, only to find out that the trailer won't move. Don't know if that's because it's overloaded, or because the snow froze it to the ground, or because the snow wasn't allowing the truck to get enough traction. Whatever, we took one load of OSB off and drove it down to the cabin in the truck and then had to shovel & sweep all the snow out of the living room so we could load the sheathing in. Briefly contemplated trying to get the subfloor in the loft laid, but it started snowing again, so we went back to the tent to spilt some more firewood instead.

And somewhere in all that, I had a sick day where I pretty much slept the whole time... which was good, because at least I got to rest my gimpy hand. And, of course, you know all about how we spent today from G's earlier post about helping Ken & Sarah retrieve their truck and trailer.  Ahhh, life in the bush in winter :D

With any luck we'll get the subfloor down and the first floor sheathed tomorrow, so we can at least stop having to shovel snow out of the cabin. Hey, maybe even get the railer to move without having to unload all the lumber and haul it back in the truck. Once all that's done we get started on the rafters... but that probably won't be until Tuesday since we'll likely be shuttling all our stuff back from the highway after Lowes delivers on Monday... if the trailer moves, that won't take nearly as long and we might get the rafters started earlier.

If Ken can come help, we might even get the rafters done and the roof sheathing up before he and G head back up to Fairbanks on Wednesday to take Trapper to the airport, run more errands, and pick up the insulation blower. If Ken can't help, I'll be assembling rafters while they're gone so we can get them raised when they get back. Otherwise I'll be framing the two loft walls and getting the mesh and vapor barrier installed so we can get the insulation blown in as soon as they get back. Then it's hanging drywall, and back up to Fairbanks to get our cabinets and some more of our winter supplies. Once the cabinets are in, the hearth pad is built, and the stove and chimney are up and running we'll start the move!


HermitJim said...

Looks like nearly all your available time is accounted for!

The cabin is coming right along, though! Hope the weather continues to co-operate at least a little!

Good luck, my friends!

Kansas Scout said...

Danger. you should have plumbed the walls and braced them. Braces do not come off until roof is sheathed. You risk a wracking collapse. high wind would easily push the structure over.
Over kill on the rim joist that gives you NO benefit. Just more weight. Studs are spaced to far apart. 16" centers with two stories. You need help

Gungnir said...

Thank you for your feedback KS.

Firstly we could have our studs 96" on center, and have no structural issues, the studs are not load bearing.

The load bearing structure is the two lower beams (6x12x24') the 16" on center joists between the beams, the Laminated 8"x8" posts, the upper beam, and joists. we do not have a rim joist, so there cannot be overkill. This is a post framed house, and all of the load bearing structures are plumb, square and level. However this may not be clear from this post alone.

The one area that the brace is on is also nonload bearing. We've had the entire structure looked over both as a builing plan, and as built by several people familiar with post framing, and they have no concerns (even those who've seen it in the real world.

We understand and appreciate your concern, but there's really nothing to worry about. However had this been a stick framed house your concerns are valid.

Dan Lynch said...

Thanks again for the interesting update, PC.

Congratulations on reaching another milestone without a new injury. :)

We're rooting for you. It's looking good, but anything could happen, so take care.

Marybeth said...

Congrats!!! I can't wait to see it when you're done =)I wondered if you were really close if you'd push your move date back a day or two. Do I remember correctly are installing a metal roof? How long will it take for the floor to dry before you can put the carpet in? Is mold an issue that far north? Once again good luck, and take care of that hand. =)

Plickety Cat said...

Hi Marybeth,

We were going to do metal, but then decided to go with shingles instead because of the pitch breaks in the gambrel would be smoother. We won't be doing that until the spring since it's cold enough for the shingles to snap when we bend or nail them. So we'll just tarp over the sheathing this winter and call it good.

It'll probably take a few days with the stove going to dry out the little bit snow on the lumber. Luckily our snow is really dry so if we sweep most of it up and make sure we chip off any ice created by melting, then most of it will be out of the envelope where we don't have to worry much about it. We won't be installing carpeting at all, but 1x6 tongue & groove planking throughout the house that we'll put down in the spring when we can sand and seal it properly. So this winter we'll live with the OSB subfloor and a throw rug or two :)

Yes, mold can be a very nasty problem up here if you trap moisture in your walls. Since it's very dry here in the winter, the interior air is almost always way warmer and moister than outside which can drive moisture into the wall where it condenses on the outside sheathing and freezes. If you don't put up an internal vapor barrier to stop the moisture from getting in or don't put on an external weather barrier that allows moisture out (but not in), then you can get into some really nasty black slimy rot problems.

We will be putting up an interior vapor barrier before the drywall, but won't be putting up our exterior weather barrier (15# asphalt felt paper) until the spring. So any snow mositure in the wall framing that didn't get dried out by the stove before we close up the wall will be able to move out of the sheathing in the spring and through the summer since tar paper "breathes out" just fine and our summers are normally pretty dry (except during El Nino like this year).

Kansas Scout said...

You are still not adequately braced off and the danger is very real. Collapses do happen regardless of framing type. Post frame building require built in angle bracing as well as adequate temporary bracing. Forewarned is forearmed.

Gungnir said...

Of course we're not adequately braced off for final construction, this is not currently a surprise for us since we have not yet installed it. The Simpson angle braces we have are doing just fine in the 30-40 mph winds we've experience during the building process. Until we get any serious weight on the top deck, or some sheathing up then the braces are not required (we have very little movement in any of the walls at the moment even with someone on the top deck and no bracing or sheathing).

Of course the sheathing also provides a additional bracing effect.

Once again thanks for your concern. Had we not had this design vetted by several post framing experts, and not had it viewed by 2 local experts then I might be concerned.

Quinton said...

We wait with bated breath!

Geneva said...

Hey guys! Computer and cloudy brain issues have kept me from checking on your progress for a couple months. Ya'll have come far and should be proud of yourselves. If I finally make it up yonder, I'm 'cheating' and will either buy a cabin ready to move in or will pay someone else to build something for me. I started taking online classes with University of Alaska Fairbanks which makes me feel like my AK dreams aren't completely gone! Love the posts - glad the puppy and kitty are hanging in there with ya!!! :) *g