My Building Steps
16’ x 8’ ½’’
I applied the sill gasket with all purpose caulking on all the metal that wood would be touching to help prevent moisture condensation.
To insulate the floor, I used foam board, which I cut to fit into the cavities of the trailer. I choose to do this over building a floor on top, so that I could save head room. I used spray foam insulation to fill in the gabs on the underneath.
Plywood & 2 x 4s
Next, I cut 2 x 4’s to go around the whole edge of the trailer. I cut 5/8 inch plywood (particle board) to fit on the inside. I used bolts to connect the plywood and 2 x 4’s to the trailer.
I began framing the walls. I built the 8’ sides as one wall and the two 16’ sides are two separate walls that met in the middle. I used galvanized 2 ½’’ screws with some soap to make them go in smoother.
Squaring the Walls
I found it easiest to screw a board to the wall once it was square to keep it that way for the wall construction and then remove it once it was built.
The Walls Going Vertical
Once I got the walls up, I used 5 inch long ledge locking screws to screw them all together. I ended up using about 60 of them. Both on the corners and any place that they met and needed extra support. I also used many bolts to attach the walls to the trailer framing.
I invested in this heavy-duty tarp, which for the most part worked well but was difficult to get it over the top because it was so tall.
I used 10’ corner brackets, which are supposed to give the structure extra support. I don’t know if they really did much at all.
I attached the rafters with joint brackets on the high side and used and S bracket to secure the joist at the lower end.
I used 3/8th inch plywood to cover the whole house.
Using nails to hold the boards up when screwing them in is a huge benefit, especially if you are working on your own.
I chose to cover my window framing with the sheathing to make my life easier.
Before I sheathed the roof, I put in the studs for the loft because I wanted to have some place to work on the roof from. I used the same ledge locking screws to secure the studs to the existing wall studs.
After all the sheathing, I continued by cutting out the sheathing from the window and door areas. And I used seam tape on the seams created by the sheathing.
I wrapped the house with house wrap to help prevent moisture damage. I also wrapped around the windows and cut them out after.
I continued by installing all the windows and caulking the seams on the outside.
Installing outlets wherever I wanted them.
I continued by framing the outside utility shed.
I had left over insulation and decided to use it right away and insulate the wheel-well.
I used 10’ boards to create the floor of the loft.
I purchased 12 foot long threading rods, ¼ inch thick and installed 4 of them, to add extra structural support to the house.
I framed the bathroom wall. One regret that I have is that the studs weren’t quite straight up from one side to the other but for the loft is wasn’t an issue, as for the walls it looks a little silly because my wall isn’t straight.
I chose metal roofing because it was light, effective, affordable and easy to install. I used tin snips to cut the roofing to the right size. This was difficult and took a few days accomplish because of blistering.
This was the type of screws I used. They are just called roofing screws but make sure they have that small ring at the top with foam to keep everything watertight.
I chose vinyl siding because once again it was affordable, light and easy to put up. I used roofing nails to attach the siding to the house. To cut the siding, I used tin snips, which worked great.
I used j-channeling around all the windows and doors and the basic corner trim on all 4 corners.
Plumbing & Electrical
I used ¾ inch Pex for all the plumbing, which made everything easy. For the electrical I had help from my sister so I don’t know exact terms but we ran the electrical wire each outlet and switch and also made sure all of them were grounded.
I used Roxul insulation to insulate the whole house.
I used 4 inch v-groove white pine paneling to cover all the walls and ceiling, which I attached to the studs with 1 & ½ inch finish nails.
For flooring I used 5 inch red oak boards and below that I installed furring strips to prevent moisture damage.
Sanding & Polyurethane
I sanded and polyurethane[d] the floor in the loft and on the lower level. In between the three coats of polyurethane, I used fine grit steel wool and tacky cloth.
I added some storage on the ground level. Using birch in between shelves gave it extra support and gives it that extra pop.
I mounted the counter top and the sink inside the counter top as well as installed the stairs. I also finished the sinks by adding the hot and cold lines connecting to the faucets and the drain pipes.
I installed a shower pan and paneled the shower walls. After the paneling, I put 4 coats of exterior grade white paint to protect the wood from the moisture.
I finished the house by adding trim to the windows and anywhere there was a crack or seam.
I finished by painting some walls and I used polyurethane on the others. A house is never finished because there are always small home improvement projects. But for now, I am happy with the way it has turned out.
My own place to call home.