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Small Cabin Forum / Cabin Construction / Boulder/gravel footing foundation?
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ruralboy
Member
# Posted: 14 Jul 2021 19:50
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I've been trying to look up references (and especially any preceding examples) online and in a few particular books but have to finally ask..

I'm mulling about a larger rectangular single-floor cabin (think 35x14ft for example) but couldn't help wondering if I'm trying to do something too unusual or not in the name of wanting to consider digging four 'ponds' to safely a bit below where the frost line would be suggested at, backfill them well, and site one very wide flat boulder onto each, lay some extra-durable moisture layer down, and finally build the cabin itself

I'm just not sure about wanting to do any kind of irreversible poured foundation but if it seem like my only option at the end of the day then I'll just gladly accept the compromises

(Of course I could just put extra beams right on the ground then build the cabin onto that but naturally possible rot problems from so much ground water [especially from melting winter] etc tells me its likely not the best idea to ever do these days!)

redneckpaul
Member
# Posted: 14 Jul 2021 20:20
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Not sure what your question is but if you want to build your cabin on gravel just do it. So not to mess with the natural drainage I had gravel hauled leveled and put the cabin on pavers on top the gravel. Of course I had my cabin pre built on trucked to the sight. Stilll perfectly level after 6 years. Cabin sits above ground level and water just naturally drains around it. I Live in a dry climate(eastern mt) and everything stays dry. It was cheap and the cabin can be moved if needed.
cabin17
cabin17


spencerin
Member
# Posted: 15 Jul 2021 22:41
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Agree with redneckpaul. If you want to do it, do it. Make sure drainage is good.

Brettny
Member
# Posted: 17 Jul 2021 06:16
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By digging down below frost and filling with rocks you could be making an underground water collection pit. That's prety poor for a foundation.

Why dont you want a permanent foundation under a cabin that will most likely also be permanent?

ICC
Member
# Posted: 17 Jul 2021 08:31
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Quoting: Brettny
By digging down below frost and filling with rocks you could be making an underground water collection pit.



Which is why I have never understood the penchant that many people have for digging a hole for a pier, dropping in a layer of gravel "for drainage" and installing the pier on that, maybe with a concrete pad between pier and bottom gravel.

The gravel is just as likely to offer a space for water to collect if there is no easy way for the water to leave the hole. A lot depends on luck and the soil type.

This is why a poured concrete and rebar footing around the perimeter, with a poured concrete
or concrete block wall on top makes for a very good foundation. Except for some soil types, but in that case the soil can be a problem for many foundation designs.

Building on an elevated mound, as long as that is stable, is great for drainage. Can't argue with that.

gcrank1
Member
# Posted: 19 Jul 2021 11:36
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Do those commercial 'footing pads' act the same way as the gravel then? (just spread the load out better)

ruralboy
Member
# Posted: 20 Jul 2021 08:42
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Thanks for the responses, more to think about here

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