This tiny house design by Claude von Roesgen not only has a roof made out of solar panels..

But it also doubles as a pontoon (actually tri-toon) houseboat.

The home has two configurations: (1) to be attached onto a utility trailer or (2) a pontoon boat which I’ll show you below.

So can we legitimately call this an amphibious tiny house?

Another interesting feature is the home’s built-in solar roof.

tiny house with solar panel roof 600x433   Solar Tiny House Doubles as Tri toon Houseboat

Photo Credit CB99Videos/YouTube

Tiny House with a Solar Roof

They actually used the solar panels as roofing for the house. This is the first time I’ve seen it done this way and I really like it. See what I mean in the photos below:

tiny house with solar panel roofing 600x372   Solar Tiny House Doubles as Tri toon Houseboat

Photo Credit CB99Videos/YouTube

Below is look from the interior:

solar roof panels in tiny house 600x420   Solar Tiny House Doubles as Tri toon Houseboat

Photo Credit CB99Videos/YouTube

I always wondered if you can use solar panels for roofing. And I guess you can! Apparently it’s water tight too.

On the inside of the house Claude used knotty pine to cover the walls.

I’m sure it’s alright to insulate and cover the panels with more tongue and groove knotty pine or whatever you might like for the ceiling.

Helicopter Tiny House?!

Then somewhere in the video someone playfully mentions, “well, what about if we installed helicopter blades on it?”

The house weighs approximately 5800 lbs including the trailer. The house alone weighs about 3800 lbs.

Bamboo flooring inside.

tiny house on wheels3 600x402   Solar Tiny House Doubles as Tri toon Houseboat

Photo Credit CB99Videos/YouTube

With knotty pine interior walls.

Lots of windows for plenty of light.

Can Tiny Houses Be Unattached from the Trailer?

tiny house on wheels or as tiny houseboat pontoon 600x416   Solar Tiny House Doubles as Tri toon Houseboat

Photo Credit CB99Videos/YouTube

Can you make it where you can attach and then later detach a tiny house from a trailer?

Great question because this is a perfect example of a house that does.

And yes- you can do this with just about any tiny house project using bolts.

This tiny house is made so you can unbolt it from the utility trailer and secure it onto the pontoon so it can become a tiny houseboat.

If you’re curious the tri-toon he bought can hold up to 10,000 lbs of weight.

Watch The Tiny House: A Documentary

I hope Claude will continue to share his amazing tiny house project with us.

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Alex

Alex has been living in small spaces for more than 7 years, he's the founding editor of TinyHouseTalk.com and the always free Tiny House Newsletter, and has passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories. Send in your story and tiny home photos so we can share and inspire others towards simplicity too. Thank you!

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{ 12 comments }

  • Diane

    It’s like a tiny house designed by Q from the 007 movies.

    Reply
  • TomLeeM

    I think it is neat that it can go from tiny house to tiny house boat.

    It is green not only because it is small but because of the solar panels. I think it is neat that the solar panels could be the roof of the house instead of being on the roof of the house.

    Reply
  • katie

    The solar panel roof is by far the best roofing I’ve seen in all my tiny house research! I’d love to learn more about it!

    Reply
  • LaMar Alexander LaMar

    The drawback to using solar panels as roofing is if you need to remove one to repair or replace it is you have a big hole in your roof and there will be more tendency to leak around the edges of the panels.

    Yo could easily put on a roof of 1/2 inch plywood under the panels without adding much weight.

    I am not sure about the pontoon boat idea and will reserve judgement. Most pontoon boats are wide and shorter to disperse the weight evenly. This looks top heavy on a narrow base which sounds like an accident waiting to happen.

    Reply
  • Margo

    I have long been wondering about having a dual purpose land/water tiny house and am delighted to see this. I am wondering if anyone else has experience? And also if there isn’t a less expensive alternative to hiring a crane to shift the house from one platform to another? (Some way to slide the house on rails? Or….)

    Reply
  • jerryd

    Trailer to boat is something I’ve been advocating for a while and greatly increases the places you can legally live free.

    A couple details though. The PV is terrible as it’ll never be fully used because of the 2 angles you’ll be lucky to get even one side doing good. For this kind of vehicle you need a far flatter roof.

    Next the panels must in many places have airflow below them to get rid of the 1kwhr/sqyd of heat hitting it at noon. So do a ventilated space under the panels and above the insulation.

    And as Lamar says rather top heavy for the hulls, total boat width he chose.

    Something on round pontoons is if overloaded like this likely will be, quickly lose stability after the water gets half way up the reserve floatation drops fast as the top get narrow. So on pontoons get ones that are wide all the way to the top unless very lightly loaded and you just can’t call a stick built TH a light load. Even a good side gust of 50-75mph could cause such a high, heavy craft to roll over. You should be at least as wide as high.

    Reply
  • Solar Burrito

    He could add stability to the boat by adding a keel. Basically a weight that hangs down about 4 feet in the water to prevent it from rolling over.

    Reply
  • frankie

    I hadn’t thought about evening out the weight on either side of the house. I guess it would be more important for a boat but it seems it would also be a factor just for driving down the highway so that your tiny house doesn’t list to one side.

    Reply

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