Tuesday, December 31, 2013

(Dec 31) Prepping for Roof

Now that all of the walls were secure, we started laying out braces for the rafters. Another area where steel is a little different than wood but a whole lot stronger. In wood, you would cut a notch out of the rafter and set it on top of your top plate. With steel, we put a brace to accept the rafter on top of the top plate. No notching necessary. Steel also carries about a 2500 pound tear resistance compared to wood at about 500 pounds. Yes we're mostly sheltered in the trees but with this roof design, there is still going to be a lot of lift pulling on the walls.

We've still got to get the window and door openings framed in on the west side. The strap running at 4' and 8' heights around the interior are for attaching sheetrock to. We had thought about adding some diagonal strap too but thought that the material buildup would be too much. Besides, the OSB sheets will give it a ton of strength against racking.

Friday, December 27, 2013

(Dec 27) 4 Corners

We finally have an idea of the interior dimensions now. Having the deck finished wasn't really enough to define how it would feel but now that all 4 walls are up, you can really tell what it will look like. The 10' ceiling sure gives it a roominess.

Friday, December 20, 2013

(Dec 20) Window Framing

Seeing the window frames take shape was a big step for us. It really put perspective to the cabin and the views we would share and enjoy for years to come. Pretty simple process of cutting the steel and folding it back so that it can attach to the studs. If you leave a little extra on the sides, it slips into place over the outsides of the studs too. We clamped them into place to confirm height and level before we screwed them in. We also tilted them outward just the slightest bit. This ensures that if we somehow get water through the seals, it will not be able to roll uphill into the cabin.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

(Dec 15) Walls start to appear

Once we got all of the track in place, I couldn't wait to get our first wall started. I had been reading about framing through the week and was pretty sure of how it was supposed to go but not having done it yet, there's always that little bit of apprehension. It went very smoothly. The studs are light enough that I could stand them up and put a single screw into the base to hold it in place. Then I screwed the 3 pieces together to make the corner. Then I went back and finished screwing bottom of the studs to the track. checking for level both directions.

The rest of the studs went along just like the corner. A little slower as I had to lay them out according to where the windows were going to be set.

Once we got all of the studs for that wall done, we laid a track across the top and secured it. This is where my inexperience cost us a lot of time and extra thought. The supply house where we get the steel had 10' pieces of track in stock but I never thought to ask if I could get it any longer. Turns out I could have ordered it to fit the top of the wall and I wouldn't have had to spend the time to figure out how to splice together 2 10' pieces. I had already bought all I needed for the perimeter so I guess I'm stuck doing it this way on all 4 walls. I'll know better next time.