Monday, June 17, 2013

Old-fashioned shed build - concrete stumps.

I think I mentioned back in December? that we (Mr CH) were going to build our long awaited shed and then nothing. Well, the shed was started and then we had Christmas and holidays and back to school and work and three months of almost non-stop rain every weekend. Then Hubby thought about starting his own blog to chronicle his shed building adventures and then decided he had no time to spare. A full time job, plenty of after hours paperwork, renovations on two houses, kid demands etc leaves little time for personal indulgences at the moment. So I'll show a bit of the shed progress that may or may not appear on his own blog spot one day.
So what is an "old-fashioned shed build"?
  For us, it will be, a shed built by the owner (Mr CH), for the owner, using recycled materials (cheap, free, hand-me-downs, salvaged) where possible, as they become available. A shed built like our grandparents did, from whatever they could get their hands on. This shed has been on Mr CH's wish list since we moved here some 15 years ago. Not wanting a standard slab on ground steel shed, the design has been stewing away in Mr CH's head for more than a few years, changed, tweaked and refined into a what he's hoping will be a customized "Man Cave".
 I won't bother you with drawings, council fees, Australian standards or the like, Mr CH might do that one day. Regulations within one area alone are quite different depending on the site location and the zoning of your block, that it would be pointless to go into all those details (and also 'cos it's really boring). I will mention that, because we are on a narrow block we are allowed to build 50cm from the boundary line, we have decided to build 80cm from the boundary. It may look a little closer because of the overhanging vine.
 The shed will be a two part structure, one side being a raised shed on concrete stumps with a lean-to structure on the lower side. If you are interested in all that enviro-impact stuff, then this is one way to lower the carbon impact. Concrete gives off carbon dioxide for it's lifespan and by choosing a raised wooden floor on one side, we have some say in how much concrete is used on one side at least and a wooden floor is kinder on the legs if you are intending to be standing up a lot.

A 2.4 metre cyclone rod ($6 each, used as tie downs for the cyclone rating) was cut with a cutting disk on the angle grinder and the burs ground off with a bench grinder. This is a cheaper alternative to bolts which can cost $2-$3each, so by making his own bolts Mr CH saved himself more than a hundred dollars and it took him roughly an hour to make them all.

Attaching the stirrups to the bearers.
 Free concrete rods (gifted) were cut and welded to the (adjustable) bolts.

More child labour.

 Dig them out (900 deep), to fill them up.

 Mr CH designed and made his own stump moulds. Scraps of plywood screwed together and held above ground with a threaded clamp jig, long enough to span the hole.

 Here's one he prepared earlier.
Not counting the free steel (or the aches and splinters), 19 stumps has cost us $348.75 plus about $10 of welding consumables.
 Guilty of some dump-and-run-blogging at the moment, I'm working hard at ruining my day clothes with oil paint. Trying to take advantage of the fine weather with weatherboards lying all over the yard, almost done as we are expecting more rain before the weekend.
Hope all is well, wasn't it chilly this morning?
We left the back door ajar last night by accident brrrr!


  1. I love that you guys used hand me down, recycled materials where possible. Good luck with the shed. Everyman needs a man cave. : )

  2. Hi Simmone, sorry I haven't been around for a while. You guys never stop! I LOVE your little table makeover, the paper is just soo pretty. Hope you are all well and looking forward to the school holidays. Tam x

  3. It's nice you're building an old shed, it will look so much nicer with the house and the older area. You have such a clever Hubby, and you're both teaching the kids so much - nothing they will ever learn in school :-)

  4. It's cool to see your process documented in photos! Looks like everything was well done and should hold up just fine. Have you finished building the rest of the shed? I worked on a similar project last Summer and it turned out to be a lot of fun. Thanks for sharing!


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