Friday, December 31, 2010

Our saving grace !

There's something i want to share , even though it doesn't have anything to do with container building . Before we had the well drilled and the septic system installed we really roughed it. We stayed for a week or two at a time working on our property. The one thing that made it bearable was the hot shower i set up. You can set it up for about $350 , so if your icelated like we are, this is a must.The hot water maker is about $200 (comes with shower head & hose), the shower tent $35, submersible pump $45, garden hose $25, propane tank ( to run the heater) $50, 55 gal plastic drum $10. The only other very important thing is you need access to a water source. We are fortunant to have a stream running thru our property. We pumped the water from the creek , into the blue 55 gallon drum, put pump in drum , to water heater. This gave better pressure, cause the stream was about 100ft away, up hill. You can regulate the temperature on heater , to take the perfect shower , in the middle of nowhere! Also works great to wash the dishes, just bring a tub. My wife says " its the best part of camping" , she's absolutely right ! Just let me know if you need help to set it up .

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A way in !

I had to build a temporary ramp ,so we could access the trailers. We intend on building a deck that will replace the ramp.The second picture is looking from inside , back down the driveway. If you look way out at the middle of the picture, at the base of the trees,you will see where our driveway meets the county road.

Friday, December 24, 2010

The winter's coming , time for heat !

Our heat supply was an easy choice , having 20 acres of woods. We had a cast iron stove out in the shop in Pa., we no longer use . I installed the chimney using double walled pipe where it meets the floor & ceiling. We were happy knowing we can stay warm.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Going back in time,camping in the rain !

Spring 2009 , after we bought our property and before the containers arrived. These are pictures of the first time we camped out for a weekend.This trip was to figure out what the next step was. It rained, but it was easy to make the best of it, we bought our dream land !

Monday, December 20, 2010

Closing up !

Our next step was to close up the basement. We bought all our windows at a discount price right outside our town. The place is called "Simonton" , there product rates up with "Pella" & 'Anderson". We like to keep our spending as local as possible, helps our community. The double doors we bought at Lowe's because when i saw them i fell in love. The blinds are in between the panes of glass and have sliders outside to raise and tilt them. Now we can lock the place !

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Sealing the roof !

We plan on finishing the roof with trusses and a metal roof. But until then we just need to seal the seams where the containers come together. So for the time being, i took that rubber roofing (sticky on one side) cut it like 4" wide and stuck it down covering the seams. Next i got a couple of buckets of roof & foundation sealer ( same stuff i sealed the foundation with ) and covered the rubber,overlapping the edge. It worked well , no leaks in the basement from there, just alittle coming in where the container meets the sill. I have an idea for that, i think will fix it , let you know how it works out when i attemp it.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Big Day !

The guy we purchased the containers from came over to check out where he would be delivering them. He said he did'nt feel comfortable about delivering out there. Our road is one lane , stone and some long drop offs. He did'nt think he could make the turn in town ,we live outside of. Oh boy, now we have a problem. We found the containers close to us but no one to deliver them here.I started calling around for weeks ,without luck.' NEVER GIVE UP" Then one day i call a towing garage , running out of options.I talk to one of the employees and he said "my boss isn't here right now but when he gets in i'll have him call you". So i asked him what do they tow ? He said "we move mobile homes"! I told him my cituation and he responded " If my boss can't move them, no one can" !Sweet ! He called me back and we planned on making a trip down to meet with him. He told me he could " get them down there". He delivered a container that we put in the edge of the woods, that we stayed in.That will be for storage , once the house is built. He did a great job ! So now was the big question " can you get 4 of them on top of that foundation"? I just figured the only way is with a crane . Just to get one out there is gonna cost us a few grand. How wrong i was! He said " i don't need a crane to get those up there" ! His price was very reasonable ! God sent us an angel that day ! He saved us alot of $$$ and did an awesome job ! We could'nt make it down that we to watch them do this. We had other obligations in Pa. but our neighbors said it was quite a spectical ! Stay tuned for how he did it ! Thanks Frank " YOUR THE MAN" !!!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Pipes & stone for floor

When the mason did the foundation he ran pipes under the footer . Our next step was to put elbows on them and extend the pipes above the finished floor level. Also i ordered 3 ton of pee gravel for the floor before the concrete was poured. Thank god a have my loader here to move it all. The rollbar on the machine just cleared the door opening i was able to drive it right in.As you see we wanted to have a ground level acsess to the basement !

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Sealing the foundation & installing the sill

For the record , we started building last summer. We live in another state & are in the process of fixing up our 1850's farmhouse to sell. Then we will be in our*container*home for good. So i am catching you up to where we are now. So , before we backfilled , i wanted to seal the concrete from ground moisture. So i used roof & foundation sealer ( its like tar ), i brushed it on , up to the ground level. Then i wrapped it in plastic, it sticks to the sealer & when it dries it adheres to it. Then with my JD850 that a friend of mine towed there for me last summer, i backfilled the foundation. I also installed the sill on top of the foundation walls , using pressure treated 2 X 8's. I put " sill sealer" between the wood & the concrete. Which is like a styrofoam about 1/4" wide , that seals any imprefections in the conrete edge so the seal is tight. The mason installed metal tabs sticking out of the top of the walls, which are the fasteners for the sill. There about every 2 feet apart , you drill holes in the sill , drop sill on top ,then bend down tabs and nail to sill.Now we are ready to put the containers on top ! We had them make the basement 40' x 32' . Why you ask ? So we can weld (4), 40' x 8' containers on top! So between the basement & the containers we will have 2560 sq. ft.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Which type foundation ?

We kicked it around for awhile of whether to use block or concrete . I really wanted a full basement, so when it came to running piping and wiring, it would be easy to access. A crawlspace is ok, but you will lay on your back to work. Since i'm doing the building basically myself , the labor to do the block would be too much. So we decided to go with concrete poured walls , we had professonally installed. It was so worth every penny! I was told by the installer that concrete walls are 65% stronger then block walls.I think i was told the containers weigh like 9000 lbs each . We did'nt want to have any problems with settling or cracking. Every well built house is started with a solid foundation ,thats how i feel. The walls are 8" thick and have a brick impression inside and out. We plan to paint the brick once the dust settles !!!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

This blogging is new to me , so bear with me !

Hi , my name is Curtis and my wife is Katie . We have something we want to share for those interested. We are building a home out of storage containers. We would love to share our experiences with you as we progress . Hopefully we will get lots of input back, from those who have done this and others that may. I will be posting pictures once i figure out how. Getting tired , see ya tommorrow !