Wow. It’s super windy today so I’m having a fun time staying indoors, Doing Nothing Constructive. My favorite activity! Sustained winds are 25-35 mph with gusts over 50! I just checked the weather and it says the sustained winds are 30 right how. Yee Haw! The camper is rockin’ and rollin’ but I’ve got it oriented to face into the prevailing winds so I’m not worried.
My poor head has been whirling with thoughts and ideas lately! I am waking up in the middle of the night a lot, thinking about how to do some of the projects I have in mind. Google and You Tube have been getting a work-out! Isn’t it amazing; you can learn ANYTHING on You Tube! Really!! I guess I’ve mostly been working on finding cute exterior decor items which can be added at a later date, when money allows.
Here are some of my crazy thoughts. For one thing, I’m 99.99% sure now that I have The Plan. I’m going to build a little 8×8 tiny house with a 2′ wide front porch, sort of like this but with more of a Victorian feel.
I have the floorplan all done and my materials list done, plus all the drawings for wall, floor and roof construction. I plan for this to be the ONLY structure….this won’t be a “build this little shed now and build something bigger later”. It’s going to be barely larger than my camper (64 sq. ft vs 58.5 sq. ft) but the difference is, the tiny house will have straight-up walls! I can have lots of storage cabinets, shelves, etc. on the walls, where in the teepee shaped camper I can’t have any. Also, if I want more space later on, I could add a little 6×7 lean-to addition onto the side of the house pretty cheaply, and that would be big enough for a twin bed and closet or potty room. Then I could remove the sofa/bed and use a couple small upholstered chairs and a table in the “living room” of the main house.
It will have a fairly steep 12/12 pitch roof, (same as the little house above) and since it’s only 8′ wide, I think I might be able to shingle it from a scaffold without actually having to get ON the roof, but I’m not sure. If not, I’ll have to hire someone to help for that part. I’d really like an even steeper roof, but I like this gingerbread trim for the gable peak, and I can use regular $15-20 corbels if it’s a 12/12 pitch (90º right angle) but if it’s anything other than 90º then it’s a special order and the price jumps to $60 and up! I really like this one; it’s $21. There’d be one up at the peak and also one at each side of the front porch, where the porch columns meet the roof.
I like this Gothic arch window for up in the gable end too! It is small, just 9 1/2″ x 22″. It’s not meant to be a real window, just decorative, but I’m thinking I could add some plexiglass over it both front and back and mount it in the wall. It’d be 10′ up, so I don’t think it’d be too noticeable if it didn’t quite look like a real window. It is only $25 including shipping, and I’ve already figured out how to do the trim. (That was another of my middle-of-the-night ponderings) I think it’d be really cute.
I’ve ordered the windows already, they are el cheapo aluminum frame playhouse windows, but I think they’ll do. They are sort of tall and skinny single-hung with grids…18″x36″. One for either side of the door, plus a shorter one for over the kitchen sink, and a cute 10″ round window for up in the back gable peak. All four for $110 including shipping!! That’s how I know they’re gonna be really nice windows….not! Sigh. I can’t afford to buy good windows. I imagine they’ll be like the crappy aluminum windows that come on most storage sheds.
I have to make my own front door because it’s going to be narrow, only 26″ wide. The biggest thing that needs to fit through the door is the refrigerator, and it’s less than 22″ wide. I found some great You Tube videos on how to make a door, and it looks like I can do it with the tools I already have, though I probably will borrow the neighbor’s table saw to make the cuts more precise than my circular saw. I have made my own door once before so I’m sure I can do it. One of my middle-of-the-night sessions was, how to make a homemade door look sort of Victorian, for not much money?? I came up with the idea of putting in a regular plain glass window and glueing (using clear glass glue) beveled glass to it. At first I thought just rectangular bevels around the outside, but then I saw these cluster bevels on clearance for $6.50 (wow!) and I had the answer! I will make two window panels side by side, each 7.5 x 17. With a narrow stile between them.; that will make a 17×17″ square window. Then I’ll glue two of these cluster sets in; I think it’ll be awesome! I’m a freakin’ genius! Hopefully the glue won’t show on the inside, especially if I try to keep it to the outside beveled parts.
I already have all my kitchen appliances lined up, thanks to a camping friend, Deb Capodice! She’s selling me her barely used Camp Chef Portable Stove With Oven and an older model Dometic RM4223 3-way RV refrigerator, for amazing prices! This fridge is 2.5 cu. ft., slightly larger than my camper’s 1.9 cu. ft. one. No freezer. I’m thinking to get one of the very efficient Engel or Wyntner 12v portable compressor freezers someday and run it off the solar/battery system. The fridge will go in the closet, with a couple drawers underneath it (to raise it up so I don’t have to stand on my head to see what’s in the fridge) and space for hanging clothes above it. That will give me a lot more cabinet space in the kitchen. I already have a really nice Kohler cast iron bar sink that I got at a thrift store.
Here is a photo of where some folks built in a stove similar to this (though the stove in the photo is a $1500 Origo 6000, made for boats!) I like that it’s portable and if I want to bake something in the summertime, I can just take the whole stove outside!
I am really hoping that if I insulate the heck out of this thing and put in continuous soffitt & ridge vents and a radiant barrier in the roof, that I’ll be able to keep it cool enough to stay here in the summer. I found some easy plans for a home-made “swamp cooler” (evaporative cooler) using a plastic bin and a $10 water fountain pump to drizzle water over an evap. cooler pad, with a 12 volt fan in front of it. It may not cool down the whole space but maybe if I direct the fan at me, I can stand it. Luckily it always cools way down to 60 or below at night here, so that will be a big help. I think I’ll get some summer shade but it’s hard to tell since the sun will be coming in from a different angle than wintertime.
I’ll try to spiff up my floorplan to show you in the next post. The one I’ve got has too much scribbling on it!
Here are links to some of the items readers have purchased on Amazon. Feel free to use these links to browse and shop!
Nature’s Truth Ultra Tart Cherry Extract
Wireless Indoor-Outdoor Thermometer
14 replies on “Whirling Thoughts”
Janis, What great ideas you have! Truly a tiny house! Will that glue for the windows withstand the heat and cold there? it will all be beautiful when you’re finished. Looking forward to seeing the beginning and evolution.
Thanks Renee! Yes I think my mine works in very strange ways, especially in the middle of the night when I can’t sleep, LOL! That’s a very good question about the glue; I’ll see if I can find out. I had thought I may have to put another piece of clear glass over the bevels, and that would help with the temps.
Renee, I checked the specs on the glue and it’ll withstand up to 176 degrees, and can even be put through a dishwasher (!) so I think we’re good there, but they don’t mention cold. I have emailed Loctite for that info. Thanks for thinking of that!
Check out aquarium glue. It’s supposed to be practically invisible. If you want to add some cool colors to your glass, check out some stuff called Gallery glass paint. I used it on a beveled glass fan light to help cut the glare. You paint it on. If you don’t like it, or need a change of pace, you just peel it off. Mine was on for several years. When I was done with it, it peeled off in one piece. You can also get peel and stick lead.
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Thanks Dee Ann! I’ll look into that.
Gorilla Clear Glue….good for temps -20 to 180 degrees!
Oh my gosh have you and your brain been busy. I give you a lot of credit for what you are forging ahead to do. It sounds like it will be really cute and efficient and most importantly what you want.
Sorry, the structure you had set up did not work, the window boxes were so cute, but in the end it has to work for you not just be cute. It sounds like your new plan fits both bills. Looking forward to reading about your progress.
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Thanks Tom & Deb!
Obviously your brother didn’t get all the creativity genes!
Haha…maybe not. I can think of things, but it’s actually executing the ideas where I bog down.
I have necer written on your Blog. But I check every day for an update on your wonderful life. I keep hoping someday we can do the same.
Thank you Helen! I hope you can too.
I. Love. It. Looks like an amazing project. 🙂
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