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Small Cabin Forum / Member's Projects and Photos / 16x40 Cabin in Central Texas
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NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 5 Jul 2014 11:30
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Hi y'all. You've all been so helpful with your forum posts and feedback that I've decided to start my own forum thread to document my own joys and struggles with my cabin build. Here we go......

NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 5 Jul 2014 11:37
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Here is the site prepped and ready for the cabin. I had a dozer come in and level the site. I also brought in 28 yards of road base to use as the pad site. The gravel pad ended up being ~5" thick and 22'x46' in dimension.

The dozer guy I used was named Dallas, his number is 512-217-9892. I would use him again, he did good work, did it efficiently and his costs were reasonable. He also had access to cheap soil and gravel that he brought into my property. For reference, he was bringing in 14 yard dump trucks of sandy loam and road base for $140 per load delivered.

...by the way this is a retrospective posting, this work was done in October of 2013.
View from front right of where cabin will be
View from front right of where cabin will be
View looking from the back of the cabin site over the pasture
View looking from the back of the cabin site over the pasture


NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 5 Jul 2014 12:17
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Here is the design for the cabin I had built by Derksen, it was purchased by A Place For Your Stuff in Smithville. The total cabin cost after tax and add ons was $16,700. The major add ons I had done to the cabin were:

-Tyvek wrap on the entire building
-30 lb felt paper on the roof decking
-Inside framing of bathroom and bedroom walls with installation of the doors for each room
-12 total windows installed.
-8 ft ceilings

I should also mention that I installed higher end windows which I purchased separately and had shipped to Derksen for them to install; the windows cost $2,200 and I got them at cost.
NotoriousAPP_Cabin_D.pdfAttached file: Cabin Drawings
 


Purplerules
Member
# Posted: 5 Jul 2014 23:45
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Super glad you did. Now we can watch your progress and enjoy your journey. Be sure to post pictures.
Your land looks great.

NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 6 Jul 2014 18:45
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Just to make sure it's documented and to help future small cabin owners, I'll cross post some info that I wrote on another forum....

I can't believe there are so many different opinions regarding insulating and venting a cathedral/gambrel roof. My cabin is built and the roof design was an option which I could not change, specifically the roof rafters which will are 24" on center 2x6 boards. It seems like most opinions (by professionals and amateurs) were in the context of colder climates like northern US. I don't get the same feedback from any of the builders or insulation companies down here. I've even had a spray foam installer (who is very reputable) tell me that he wouldn't recommend using spray foam (closed or open) since I won't be using the cabin that much, he was concerned about creating a sealed building which may result in trapped moisture, his recommendation was to use fiberglass and let the building breathe.

Here is my exact situation:
-VERY IMPORTANT: I live in central texas where we get 105 degree summer days and some winter nights in the mid teens. Most of the year it's warm here and I would be running the AC (window unit) in the cabin. It does not rain here often.

-VERY IMPORTANT: This is a weekend retreat cabin. I will only occupy it for 0-6 days per month in both the summer and winter. I don't plan on running any air conditioners or heaters while no one is in the unit.

-The roof will be the ceiling for the building and vice versa. It is a cathedral ceiling.

-The cabin is 16x40' with a gambrel roof which comes with a ridge vent installed but sealed off with 30lb felt paper (bridging the two sides of the roof on top of the OSB decking); I can simply cut the plastic open if I want to use the vent.

-There are no soffit vents installed anywhere and there is very little room to do so; the best I could probably do is to drill several 2" holes in between each rafter if I decide to use a soffit-ridge vent option

-I will be using R13 faced fiberglass in the walls. The cabin is wrapped in Tyvek which is between the studs and LP SmartSiding.

-There is no insulation or vapor barrier below the foundation. The foundation will be on pier and beam 24" off the ground. I do plan on adding skirting around the building in the future.

-The building does not require an inspection so I don't need to follow code but would like to get as close as possible.

-I don't want to say that money is not a concern, because it is, but I don't want to do something because it's cheap now and pay for it later.

Here are some scenarios which I've compiled from the 15 different opinions I received. My goal was primarily to make sure the cabin had no condensation or other moisture problems and secondly to provide adequate insulation considering the low number of days I'll be using the cabin. Each of the scenarios of from the interior of the building to the exterior.

Scenario 1: with soffet and ridge vent
Tongue and Groove Paneling
Unfaced R13 Fiberglass insulation
1" Foam board
1" air gap between foam board and roof decking (I would install 1" pieces of wood to provide stand off between the roof decking and the foam board)
Roof decking
30# felt paper
Corrugated metal roof
-I would add no additional ceiling vents.
-This is similar to what GameMaker04 on youtube.com did with his pre-built cabin. Here is a link to the specific video: URL. His video series is awesome, definitely worth watching.

Scenario 2: with soffit and ridge vent
Corrugated metal
Unfaced R19 Fiberglass insulation
1" styrofoam vent baffles
Roof decking
30# felt paper
Corrugated metal roof
-I would add no additional ceiling vents.


Scenario 3: with no soffit and or ridge vent
Tongue and Groove Paneling
Unfaced R13 Fiberglass insulation
2" closed cell spray foam
Roof decking
30# felt paper
Corrugated metal roof
-Add 4 ceiling vents which would allow moisture to escape through the roof. They would always be left open when the cabin is vacant and likely open most of the time when the cabin is occupied

Since I originally wrote this back in August 2013 I've had many more opinions on how I should do this. I've chosen to go with scenario 2 to begin with. I will insulate half the roof and monitor it for a while to make sure there are no moisture issues. If I find that there are moisture issues then I will drill soffits in my top plate and open the ridge vent. Since the vent baffles are already installed the system will become a traditional soffit-ridge vent system (see attached picture).
The vent system I'll use
The vent system I'll use


NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 18 Jul 2014 14:26
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I made it out to the cabin this past weekend to continue insulating, perform some brush pickup and build wildlife habitat. Brought a neighborhood kid with me to help....which was the best $10/hr I ever spent.

I was out there all day Friday expecting Lowe's to deliver all my insulation and rain collection system supplies. They committed to delivery between 12-4 and never showed up, being the bix box scum they are they never even called to let me know. I rescheduled for Saturday at 9AM and of course they didn't show up until 12:45PM. Anyhow, I can now begin insulating the cabin which I did. I was able to get 25% of the bedroom insulated. It's actually not so hard, it's just obnoxious to do it in the hot ass cabin.

Here are some pictures of my new stairs, gutters and overhang. I do wish I built the overhang larger but it will be sufficient to keep the rain off the door.
Front Stairs
Front Stairs
Back Stairs
Back Stairs
Gutters
Gutters
Rear Overhang
Rear Overhang


Purplerules
Member
# Posted: 20 Jul 2014 20:01
Reply 


Looking good. I like how you did the stairs off front and side corner.
We only have a 4ft overhang on the front porch and it has worked out great. We are adding on to it this summer though.

NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 11 Aug 2014 12:48 - Edited by: NotoriousAPP
Reply 


I was able to finish the hook up of my rain collection system this past weekend for one side of the roof. I needed more 4" pipe to complete the hookup for the other side of the roof:

Here are some pictures.
20140808_144800.jpg
20140808_144800.jpg
20140808_144810.jpg
20140808_144810.jpg
20140808_144911.jpg
20140808_144911.jpg


NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 11 Aug 2014 12:53
Reply 


Pretty much all the walls are insulated, time to move onto the roof. I've decided to go with the following:

-roof decking OSB
-24" wide x 1" deep foam baffles to vent from soffit to ridge vent (both of which don't exist yet)
-Foil radiant barrier (perforated to allow moisture through)
-R19 fiberglass insulation
-corrugated metal

I'm going to fir out the rafters. They're currently 2x6" and I've ordered 2x2" fir strips for them.

Here is a link to the radiant barrier I was planning on using: URL

Will add updates once I struggle through this.

NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 18 Aug 2014 13:46
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Was able to hook up the rain collection to the other side of my roof this weekend. The system is not completely plumbed to the water tank. All the PVC piping is only mechanically fastened either by friction or small screws. I'll see how well it works before cementing all the pieces together. I now need to build the gravel pad for the other water tank and then connect the two tanks.

I started installing the Duro Vent foam baffles to the underside of the roof decking. So far it's going well.

I got most of the 2x4 supports installed between the 2x8 rafters supporting the loft above the bedroom and bathroom. I ran out of screws so I had to stop.

I took delivery of the firring strips for the 2x6 roof rafters as well as some more R19 insulation.
Rain collection hook up complete
Rain collection hook up complete
Rain collection hook up complete
Rain collection hook up complete
Duro Vent baffles along bottom of gambrel roof
Duro Vent baffles along bottom of gambrel roof


Purplerules
Member
# Posted: 18 Aug 2014 22:05
Reply 


It is really shaping up and looking good.

NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 18 Aug 2014 22:18
Reply 


Thanks. Now if I could just get some rain.

Purplerules
Member
# Posted: 14 Feb 2015 07:50
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NotoriousAPP - how are things going with your build? You have not posted in awhile. Any updates?

NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 23 Feb 2015 00:51
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Hi Purplerules, hope all is well. Sorry, been busy traveling out of the country and with work in general. I have worked on my cabin a bit. I'll try to update the postings this week....at least for my sake.

NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 23 Feb 2015 01:05 - Edited by: NotoriousAPP
Reply 


I've spent most of the recent months installing the roof insulation. I also firred out the rafters another 2" to make room for the vent baffles and R19 insulation. This was the following stack (from the outside of the roof to the inside):

-roof decking OSB
-24" wide x 1" deep foam baffles to vent from soffit to ridge vent (both of which don't exist yet)
-Foil radiant barrier (perforated to allow moisture through)
-R19 fiberglass insulation

I also added 2x4's at the bottom of the baffles along what could the soffit in case I want to drill holes and add venting at a later time.

Here are some pictures of my unvented cathedral ceiling, the insulation sandwich and vent baffles.
Vent Baffles Going Up First
Vent Baffles Going Up First
2x4 to keep the insulation out of the soffit area
2x4 to keep the insulation out of the soffit area
Attic Foil going over the vent baffles
Attic Foil going over the vent baffles
R19 insulation going over the foil
R19 insulation going over the foil


NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 23 Feb 2015 01:24 - Edited by: NotoriousAPP
Reply 


After fully insulating between many of the roof rafters I placed a temperature and humidity data logger between one pair of rafters, between the vent baffle and roof decking. The logger was sitting on top of the vent baffle probably 3/4" from the roof decking. I sealed back up the cavity below this with removed R19 insulation.

I left the data logger in the cavity from December 28th, 2014 to February 22, 2015. Over this time period we had days between 27-82 degrees Fahrenheit and may days with moderate rainfall. During the entire time the cabin was not heated or cooled except for very brief instances where I was working in the cabin for a few hours, overall it's negligible.

I removed the data logger and downloaded the data. I do see that there were many days when the %relative humidity (%RH) was greater than 90% for a few hours, this was typically when the sun was rising and starting to hit the roof. I don't really know whether I should be concerned about the data or not, I do see that the temperature never equaled or fell below the dew point which is good. I also did not observe any condensation or moisture when I removed the data logger. I will go back again a few times and inspect the roof decking in the morning when the sun rises to check for moisture again.

The first graph shows all the data collected.


The second graph shows a zoom of a a couple weeks worth of data just so you could have a better view of some of the data.


Anybody have opinions on this?

If anyone wants the raw data I would be happy to share it with them, just message me.

NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 14 Apr 2015 00:54 - Edited by: NotoriousAPP
Reply 


My contractor got started last week on several items:

-Plumbing rough out. Everything is stubbed out and plumbed with PEX.
-Water heater placement, plumbing and electrical
-Finish the wall and ceiling vent baffles, radiant barrier and insulation.
-Install loft rail posts and build loft railings (they're all made from cedar)
-Began installing the ceiling tin.

With all the insulation installed and half the ceiling tin installed the unit is able to stay cool and dry when it's 86 degrees and 65% humidity outside. The AC doesn't even need to run that much.

All the wood for the walls has been ordered. I decided to go with 3/4 finished pine plank for all the walls and under-loft ceiling. All the walls will get the Ice Lager finish, the under-loft ceilings will get a mix of Texas honey brown, ice lager, American nut brown, English Porter....these different finishes will be mixed in a random pattern, should look pretty awesome. The planks are made by Woodtone and are T&G on all four sides of the plank. Here is a link to the material: http://www.woodtone.com/products/RealWood-RealSoffit/overview.htm

I've also ordered the flooring material. I went with Allure vinyl planks from Home Depot. I chose Limed Oak (64214). This was more expensive than I expected, 25 cases cost $1,300.
IMAG1164.jpg
IMAG1164.jpg
IMAG1166.jpg
IMAG1166.jpg
Top of back loft
Top of back loft
Kitchen rough out plumbing
Kitchen rough out plumbing


NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 19 Apr 2015 23:45
Reply 


The cabin is really starting to come together. Here's what's been done since the last time:

1) The tin ceilings are complete. They came out okay. I like the color of the tin just fine but I don't like the way the ends of each piece overlay eachother: sometimes there's a gap between the two pieces and it looks a little sloppy. You can also see the imperfections and any little bow in each metal piece since most of it is flat, the corrugated pattern would've hidden this better. It's not awful, it's just not ideal.

2) The underloft ceilings are complete and look awesome. I went with a jigsaw puzzle pattern of the real soffit Texas honey brown, Ice lager, American nut brown and English Porter stains/colors. It looks pretty amazing.

3) Most of the walls are up; I went with Ice Lager real soffit for all the walls and it looks amazing. The wood has some unbelievable knots and color variations in it.

4) The building was lifted 1.25" in the front only. Each support was re-shimmed. I'll likely add some additional pads around the perimeter of the building. I was told that the finish out will nearly double the weight of the building.

Work that will be finished this week:
-Walls
-The flooring should also go in this week.
-Loft railings and gates

After all this work is complete I need to work on building a proper driveway with some culverts and road base. We had quite a bit of rain and the dirt driveway is really taking a beating. After that would be trim work and underpinning of the building.
Standing at front door
Standing at front door
Standing at entrance to beedroom
Standing at entrance to beedroom
Standing at entrance of bedroom door
Standing at entrance of bedroom door
Underloft ceiling wood pattern
Underloft ceiling wood pattern


NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 26 Apr 2015 23:20
Reply 


Had another walk through of my cabin after one more week of work. Main updates since the last posting are:

-All first floor walls are complete.
-Gates for both lofts are complete.
-Kitchen sink cabinet placed and plumbing roughed-in.
-Bathroom vanity placed and plumbing roughed-in.
-First floor flooring is complete.
-I installed kitchen light and began installing the outlet and switch plate covers.

I asked the contractor to get started on the window and door trim this week, that should cover about 75% of all the trim work required. I will attempt to do the baseboards and wall trim myself. All trim will be smooth cut stain grade cedar.

I've also put out a request for an estimate to bring in 120 cubic yards of road base to build the driveway and another 9 cubic yards of gravel to place around the cabin perimeter.
IMAG1260.jpg
IMAG1260.jpg
IMAG1261.jpg
IMAG1261.jpg


smallhomedreamer
Member
# Posted: 4 May 2015 00:23
Reply 


thanks for sharing.

NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 25 May 2015 19:32
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Shower base and drain line is finally installed.

Spent this past Saturday doing a deep clean (now that majority of trim work and sanding is done) and putting a coat of polyurethane on all the cedar trim. Had to leave at 11PM when the rains started back up again, we almost got rained in! I really need to get the driveway put in as soon as it dries out.

We did get the bedroom cleared out and cleaned. I'll be looking for a platform bed and mattress for the bedroom so we can actually stay out there the next time we're out there late.

Purplerules
Member
# Posted: 1 Jun 2015 23:23
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Oh my gosh you have been so busy. It looks fantastic. I love the tin you used on your ceiling and the wood on the under loft. Keep up the good work. And thank so much for posting timeline pictures.

NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 16 Oct 2015 11:57 - Edited by: NotoriousAPP
Reply 


Pfewwww. My cabin was 4 miles northeast of where the current Bastrop fire is burning. The smoke was coming right over the property, we were lucky the winds were favorable to us. Looks like the fire is under control....for now.

NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 16 Oct 2015 12:11 - Edited by: NotoriousAPP
Reply 


I do have some more progress and pictures to share.

-The bedroom is pretty much done with the exception of installing the baseboards and the his/hers reading lights over the bed.

-I was able to get all the base cabinets installed. The lazy susan took forever to get installed correctly; I never want to install one of those again. Since I'm 6'3" I raised the cabinets up another 5.5" using a 2"x6" board. I took the liberty of creating a secret compartment underneath the cabinets with the space created by the 2"x6"'s. I place some plywood on top of the base cabinets until I get the counters installed. Next step is to find a sink, install the counter top, install the wall cabinets installed and put trim over the 2x6's below the cabinets. I still can't decide whether I'll put a full size oven in there or not, I'm leaning towards no.

-My neighbor came by and shredded the pasture in front of my cabin. The place looks SO much better now!!!! I love my neighbors.

-I installed a hoist out back to list the solar shower. I built a small platform to take showers on. I tested it, it works quite well.

-I'm trying to work on getting a gravel driveway installed. It's hard finding dozer guys out here.
Base cabinets installed
Base cabinets installed
Hoist, Solar shower and platform
Hoist, Solar shower and platform
Before pasture shredded
Before pasture shredded
After pasture shredded
After pasture shredded


NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 16 Oct 2015 12:14
Reply 


Here are some pictures of the bedroom. You can see where I still need to install the reading lights above the bed.
20150830_16.08.34..jpg
20150830_16.08.34..jpg
20150830_16.08.13..jpg
20150830_16.08.13..jpg


NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 27 Nov 2015 00:11
Reply 


Was able to spend last Saturday at the cabin. During that time i got some of the wall kitchen cabinets and the gun rack installed. Feels good to have a home for the rifle.
Kitchen cabinets
Kitchen cabinets
Gun rack
Gun rack


NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 14 Dec 2015 23:14
Reply 


I was able to get out to the cabin this Friday to take delivery of my oven/range. I built the platform for it as well. I decided to wait for the electrician to hook it up when he's here to do the final install on the fan, lights, etc.

I also stained the sliding pocket door and half of the bathroom door.

Next step is to built a platform for the fridge, install the countertop and sink, install the cabinet and microwave above the stove and then add trim below all of the cabinets.

I really need to get the skirting added to the cabin!!!
Stove has arrived.
Stove has arrived.


Mzmizery
Member
# Posted: 17 Feb 2016 12:29
Reply 


Beautiful exactly what we're looking to do. We have a 16x32 we just had put up, so basically where you started. Resources in our area are slim. Would live to know more about costs for the wood walks and where you purchased your cabinets. We still have a ling way to go. Plan on full porches on front and back before we start the inside. Have a basic plan in mind but would like to see your layout. I will continue to follow your progress...nice job
WP_20160117_12_46_59.jpg
WP_20160117_12_46_59.jpg


NotoriousAPP
Member
# Posted: 17 Feb 2016 13:12 - Edited by: NotoriousAPP
Reply 


Mzmizery Excellent, your cabin looks good already.

See my post above for August 14th, in that post i include details about the wood used for the walls. It was purchased aft McCoys although it had to be special ordered since they generally only stock the honey brown color. I'll see if i can dig up a quote from McCoys for you. I want to say that the wood used on the walls and ceiling cost somewhere between $3500-$4000.

The cabinets were bought from Lowes. They're from the Denver collection, the pattern is Hickory.

Mzmizery
Member
# Posted: 18 Feb 2016 00:38
Reply 


Thanks for the info! I'll definitely check it out. Look forward to watching your progress

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