Rich Daniels, of Rich’s Portable Cabins in North Powder, Oregon is here to share some wisdom regarding tiny house building standards and safety issues. Since I think his concerns are valid and very important for the future of tiny homes I’m sharing it with you below. Please pass it on.
Wanted to just take a moment to show my appreciation for the Tiny House forum you have created and add a note of concern that I have. I truly enjoy seeing all of the Tiny living spaces that people create for themselves, it is great to see the marriage of art and ingenuity. My concern has been and continues to be our transition as a community into mainstream living. Fighting the decades long belief that bigger is better and trying to have city, counties and states recognize us as a viable legal living option. Those who build Tiny Homes for resale should be vehemently aware of this situation and there is where my concern begins. Although many of the designs I have been seeing lately on your medium are brilliant in many ways, some if not all are lacking the safety features that all manufactures must conform to.
Well, it turns out there are a lot of alternative framing systems out there. Why would you use one of them to build your tiny house?
In a lot of ways, conventional 2×4 stud framing is pretty awesome. This technology makes it possible to build houses quickly and cheaply. It’s flexible and can be used to create a wide variety of structures, including tiny houses. And it’s based on a standardized set of dimensions with which most other building products are compatible.
But conventional framing has some weaknesses, and the main one is that it’s not terribly easy to seal and insulate well, so it’s not very energy-efficient. That’s one of the five big factors we’d look for in an ideal framing system for a tiny house:
5 Factors for Framing Tiny Houses
Insulation. Does it provide good thermal insulation and few air leaks?
Strength. Can it stands up to the rigors of transportation, high winds, etc.?
Weight. Is it relatively lightweight? (Sorry, concrete, you’re out!)
Cost. Is the additional cost (if any) justified by the benefits?
Ease of construction. Can it be built quickly, and is professional installation required?
Have you ever thought of building your own tiny log cabin in the woods?
When I found this guy’s videos on Youtube I was pretty excited. He has built at least two really small log houses in the woods using materials within 100 feet of the construction sites all by himself. Imagine doing all the notching yourself along with shingling your own roof with materials you found. That’s what this guy did with the help of some power tools. He even made his own flooring which you’ll see in a minute (if you can stream videos). Both projects were done as a one man show, that’s part of the reason both houses are so tiny.
The first cabin project was more of an experiment which took a total of 100 hours of labor. This one used 5 fir trees, some saplings, a bag of screws, mortar, concrete blocks, thick poly, and a zinc strip for the roof.
It sits on 4 big rocks for a foundation and the floor is made out of dirt. He used a half notch for its simplicity using a hand saw, an axe, and a mallet. Here, check out the progress in the video below…
If you were to start building your own tiny house right now, which of Tumbleweed’s designs would you pick?
The reason I’m asking is that I just talked to Steve from Tumbleweed Tiny Houses and he graciously asked me if I’d like to be apart of the Orlando, Florida Tumbleweed Tiny House Workshop and of course I said yes!
I am even more excited than I was the other day when I found out that I was featured on the Sunday cover of the Real Estate section on the News-Press where Jay Shafer, Kent Griswold, and Gregory Johnson were mentioned. How cool is that?
That’s our awesome little dog, Louie, in our apartment that we just moved into. It’s a 600 square foot place (we went up from 500) and it was a relatively easy move because we just had to go downstairs (same apartment building). I’ll tell you all about it later if you care to know.
Do you think you can build a tiny house? This 15 year old kid is doing it right now.
His name is Austin Hay and he’s actually 16 now and a sophomore in high school (but still!).
He started building a Tumbleweed Fencl tiny house because he wanted to downsize, be good to the environment, and to make a financially smart decision.
On his web site he says, “I have started to build a tumbleweed house to show adults and peers that one person can help the big picture. I think its important that we keep this one world we have healthy.”
If Austin is doing it, you can do it too. With a little motivation (think about living pretty much mortgage free) and some leg work: building plans, construction site, and a place to park it when finished.
You could be well on your way too. What’s stopping you? Tell us about it in the comments below. You don’t have to register, just click here to go to the comments.
The content and information here is for entertainment and should not be taken as professional advice. While we strive to provide accurate and helpful information, we are not professionals. The owner of this website disclaims all warranties expressed or implied regarding the accuracy, timeliness, and completeness of the information provided.
Tiny House Talk is the ultimate resource for tiny house enthusiasts. With an extensive library of articles, videos, and interviews featuring expert advice, stories from people who have made the switch to a smaller home, and more – it’s the perfect place to learn everything you need to know about going small! Get all your questions answered and start your tiny house journey today.
Tiny House Talk lets you list tiny homes for sale or rent as a free service but Tiny House Media, LLC, TinyHouseTalk.com, and its contributors do not validate/verify the information we receive for these listings so it is your responsibility to verify the information we provide for you. Please do your due diligence and deal with people in person. Thank you.
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.