The goal was to fulfill their shared dream of building a cabin in the woods. So when they got there, they worked for six days building a 200 sq. ft. tiny cabin and got it the shell done for about $6,000.
For six days, we worked to turn a small clearing situated in a stand of stately Douglas Firs into a place of our own. Our fearless leader, a builder by trade, had the right experience to guide the project. But the rest of us were total novices. The project consumed 264 two-by-fours, ~40 working hours over 6 days, 3,000 photos, and about $6,000 (excluding the land we built on). We left Oregon convinced that there is no better way to spend a week with close friends — a cabin build will beat a week in Cancun every time.” — The Builders (Mac Bishop, Geoff King, William Dickerson, and Aaron Flack)
Friends Build 200 Sq. Ft. Tiny Cabin in 6 Days for $6K
I took a moment to interview the guys because I was curious about how and why they did it. You can read the quick Q&A below.
An Interview with Aaron Flack, Mac Bishop and Geoff King
Are you going to build any more cabins? What do you guys plan on doing next? Will you build more cabins on the land?
We haven’t started planning the next one, but we know it’s going to happen. Just a matter of finding the time and place. The land we built the cabin on is a family farm and probably doesn’t have the need for another cabin. We’d like to get more people involved with the six day cabin concept and help others that have land in need of a cabin.
How did you guys figure out the land/lot situation?
The land is Mac’s family farm. There are multiple shareholders and Mac submitted a proposal for a vote at the shareholders meeting and it passed!
In what ways is this tiny cabin helping to improve you and your friends lives?
Every stage of this project was both fun and a great learning experience. We planned the design, supplies and timeline. We built for six days. And we documented the entire process with a timelapse video and photography. In addition to the learning, the project brought us closer together. And we have plenty of nights in the cabin to look forward to.
What are you most grateful for about this project?
We are grateful for any chanced to escape the urban grid. Because we all live in cities (New York, Chicago, Raleigh) for the diversity of creative and job opportunities, chances to head off into nature and conquer a challenge with great friends are few and far between.
It’s also a blessing to have friends who are willing to use up vacation days for a week in the dirt. We packed light and stayed on a simple farm. On the worksite we wore one or two t-shirts, one pair of work pants, and one pair of shoes each. We used our cell phones sparingly. We cooked for each other and ate well. It’s not glamorous, but that’s how we like it. Building a cabin and living simply go hand in hand.
What are some things that you learned by doing it?
It’s a long list. Aaron actually wrote a post listing everything we learned. Some highlights include:
-the “a place of our own” ideal is totally achievable
-a lot can be accomplished in the absence of a computer
-a shared goal can make strong friendships even stronger
If you could go back, what would you do differently?
A lot! But that’s the beauty of doing something like this. You learn and get better every time. Over planning in some places and under planning in others. I don’t have a carpentry background, but bought a bunch of hurricane ties and then when William (our woodworking-inclined leader) saw what we needed, he just notched out space for the main floor supports to sit in. I think we could have built this cabin in 3 days if we had all the materials from day one. And having a budget to start on the interior would have been nice too.
Our big thanks to Mac Bishop, Geoff King, and Aaron Flack for sharing and for taking the time to answer our questions.
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