Friday, December 24, 2010

Out Behind the Woodshed...

We have a wood stove in our home that was traded to us for a box of .45 Long Colt shells. Friends in the business installed our stovepipe for just the cost of the pipe and we use that little stove for a significant portion of our home heating.

You can see a picture of our stove (and a drying duck) here.

For the past few years I have stored our firewood at the end of our gravel driveway stacked between several T-posts. We covered it with plastic sheeting and tarps and tied them down but it was an unsatisfactory arrangement. The plastic would shred because of the elements, or it would blow off and our wood was always wet or covered in snow just when we needed it the most. So, I resolved to solve the problem. I decided to build a wood shed.

I am not a construction guy. I have had no formal or informal schooling and the only experience I have has been building stuff around High Prairie Acres. I’m sure those of you with experience can tell that right off from the pictures.

I built it from some spare lumber I had laying around and sided it with plywood that I bought. The roof is my standard roof construction – 2-by lumber covered with OSB and topped with tar paper and shingles. I’m getting better at roofing but I still don’t have it perfected yet – I used the wrong sheet metal strips for drip edge... It did go easier this time though because I now own an air-compressor and I borrowed my buddy’s roof nailer for the job. He also helped me to set the rafters - something I'm not that good at yet. I bought us (he and I) a big box of roofing nails and just the other day he stopped by to pick up his gun and I told him the nails were his to use. Barter.

I divided the shed into two sections – one for firewood and one for kindling. I envisioned filling the right side up to the roof with dead branches for use as kindling but I haven’t gotten there yet. I left the back open a bit so that my view of “the bottoms” would not be totally blocked. The overhang is such that rain and snow don’t really blow in there. If it becomes a problem I’ll probably close it off with clear plastic.

I thought the plywood siding would hold up to the elements okay but I was wrong. About a week after I built it, it rained and one side developed a big bulge from water swelling. Great... So I used some old orange paint I had and got a coat on. It was an atrocious color but it was free paint. I couldn’t stand looking at it though and planned to cover it with something better. Then it got cold for a couple weeks and I could no longer paint. When it warmed up, I used some left over white paint I had for a second coat. I figured I’d leave the wood “trim” white and paint the sides with a third coat the color of my house to make it match. Now I am thinking of siding it with vinyl siding – I’ve always wanted to learn how to do that and this is a small project. But for now, I’m done working on it.

It snowed today and this is the first day I’ve really appreciated the effort I put into building this shed. So that's it – nothing major for the blog this time but I thought you might appreciate that an average Joe can take some steps on his own to alter his environment – to improve his situation.

Have a Merry Christmas.
I’ll see ya out there.

And the fire upon the altar shall be burning in it; it shall not be put out: and the priest shall burn wood on it every morning, and lay the burnt offering in order upon it; and he shall burn thereon the fat of the peace offerings. – Leviticus 6:12

If you have any comments I’d love to hear them.
If they really interest me, I may even post them.
You can reach me at Joe

You can also join us to discuss this and other issues at Viking Preparedness Forums

Prepared Americans for a Strong America


At 24/12/10 14:09, Blogger Gorges Smythe said...

The proof is in the pudding, Joe, or if you prefer a different cliche, "Pretty is as Pretty does." If something does the job for which it was intended, then the project is a success. Maybe I shouls hire you to build me a tractor shed!

Merry Christmas and God bless you!

At 24/12/10 14:45, Blogger Bustednuckles said...

Merry Christmas. Throw another chunk in the stove for me, it is fairly chilly back here.

At 26/12/10 12:29, Blogger Dirty Butter said...

Good for you for working toward self sustaining living. We're a long way from it, but we do make sure what we do spend goes for worthwhile purchases.

I hope you and your family had a wonderful Christmas!

At 28/12/10 19:46, Blogger Shy Wolf said...

Though I've always just covered my ten cords with tarps, I've thought at times of building a shed- very few in this area use sheds if they burn wood as primary source, since it doesn't sit around long enough to deteriorate.
Yours looks much like those around here, just think you should make one important addition to it, due to wind and snow loads.
Each of the posts should have a brace, about a 45 degree angle, on each side to prevent sway. The sheathed ends are exempt from it cuz the sheeting is the brace.
Looking good, though- keep it up and you'll have the homestead right perfect.
Oh- about building: just remember the "rule of 16": All centers are 16 inches; there are three 16s to four feet; and there are two fours to eight feet, but add one 16 for a 'starter'.
And too many nails weaken the board.


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