Step 11: Wrapping the House

House wrapped

All right, today is an easy step: we are going to wrap the structure in Tyvek in preparation for installing windows, door, and ultimately putting on siding. Tyvek is a moisture control synthetic fabric that allows your house to breathe, and just like GoreTex clothing – expel the water vapors out, but not let the water in, so if any water gets through siding and from under the roof, it will be diverted away and won’t rot your OSB framing.

Tools needed: utility knife, stapler or Stinger (optional)

Materials needed: Tyvek wrap, Tyvek sealing tape, T-50 staples or cap nails (optional)

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Step 10: Shingling the Roof

Shingled roof

A long overdue update, but it’s finally here: it’s time to shingle the roof. There are quite a few steps in preparation to this, so that’s why it took me so long. With that, let’s begin!

Tools needed: hammer, roofing nailer (optional), roofing nails, collated roofing nails (optional), tool belt (optional, but highly recommended), kneepads (optional, but highly recommended), utility knife, spare heavy duty or roofing blades, siding nailer (optional), miter saw.

Materials needed: trim boards, roofing felt paper or synthetic roofing felt (recommended), shingles, tack nails, finish nails, roofing nails or collated roofing nails (if using nailer), metal drip edge.

First, we need to put fascia on top of sub-fascia and run the trim under the roof on eve and rake ends. Get your trim boards, measure and cut. Use finish nails to put them in place, because we don’t want ugly nail caps shining through pretty trim. Besides, finish nails allow the trim to move as it expands and contracts with weather.

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Step 9: Sheathing the Roof

It’s been a while since my last update, so it’s time to fix it. I wanted to run electricity first, but it’s a whole other can of worms, so I decided to complete the roof first.

Sheathing the roof included more steps than just laying sheets of OSB and nailing them, and a few issues had to be fixed. Roof is the pinnacle of your building, so not surprisingly every small mistake you made along the way that was ‘good enough’ for the floor or the walls starts to manifest itself in the roof, and you have to deal with it.

So, let’s proceed.

Tools needed: circular saw, miter saw, framing nailer, hammer, ratcheting tie-downs (optional)

Materials needed: OSB, lumber, collated nails.

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Step 8: Sheathing Walls

Walls are ready

Walls are ready

Another weekend – another construction update. Frame is ready, so it’s time to cover it in OSB, or in other words, sheathe the walls.

Tools required: framing nailer, circular saw, reciprocating saw, table saw (optional), plumb bob.

Materials required: OSB sheeting, collated nails.

Shed is 12×16, so that’s 4 sheets of OSB on the long side, 3 on the short. Pick one sheet up, line it up straight and square against the corner on the long wall, and start nailing it in. If your walls are indeed straight and square, it’s a no-brainer, other than the fact that the 4×8 sheet of 15/32 OSB weighs quite a bit, and you want to put some kind of support underneath it, or you will never hold it in place level and long enough to nail it in. I used a bunch of 2×4 leftovers from building the frame. Other people drive in a few nails into the floor frame, but I tried and didn’t like that approach.

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Step 7: Framing the Roof

All right, it’s time to face the most involved part of the project. No longer straight cuts, we are dealing with angles now!

Tools needed: framing square, framing nailer, measuring tape, miter saw, table saw, circular saw (optional)

Materials needed: OSB (oriented strand board), lumber, collated nails, Simpson hurricane ties.

My shed is 12×16, so the rafters span more than 10 feet. This means I have to build rafters with the bottom chord to straddle the walls. Now, we have a large triangle, and we need to figure out the angles, mark them on the pieces of lumber, cut precisely, so the pieces align with each other, and then nail together using gussets made out of OSB.

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Step 6: Framing Door and Window Openings

Been a pretty busy week, so had no time to work on a shed, but what is left in terms of wall construction is more of the same: cut your studs to size, line up base plates, nail the studs. Except now we have to create door and window openings.

The only difference is that both doors and windows get a header, that will support the load on the increased opening, and windows also get a sill. But first, we interrupt this program to bring you some more lumber:

A few extra pieces coming right up.

A few extra pieces coming right up.

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Step 5: Framing Walls

Tools required: miter saw or circular saw, framing nailer, measuring tape, rafter square.

Materials required: lumber, collated nails.

I know I said I would be doing rafters next, and in fact I did, but I won’t tell you about it just yet. Rafters are probably the most involved piece of construction there is (due to angles), and truly deserve their own chapter. What happened is that after I constructed a few of them, I realized the roof pitch might be too steep and too high. I don’t want my shed to stick out of the yard like a Freedom Tower calling on the neighbors: “yo, motherfuckers, check dis out!” In fact, the less attraction it gets from the city inspectors, the better. After all, this is an illegally constructed shed (even if it’s up to all codes).

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Step 4: Sheathing the Floor

New saw – new construction updates!

Today we will be sheeting the constructed floor frame.

Tools required: good circular saw (or a big-ass table saw if you run a woodworking shop), framing nailer, adhesive gun, tape measure (optional).

Materials: OSB T&G (Oriented Strand Board, Tongue & Groove), construction adhesive, collated nails.

This is a pretty simple step if your frame is level and square – that is, of course, if you didn’t spare any effort on your foundation. If it’s not – lord have mercy on your poor soul. We will be using 3/4” 4×8 sheets of OSB with a tongue-and-groove system. These sheets click into each other and form a tightly jointed floor.

Tongue on one end, groove on the other. What a concept!

Tongue on one end, groove on the other. What a concept!

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Step 3: Framing the Floor

What time is it? It’s evening shed story time!

All right, today we can do floor framing. If you spent the effort to level your foundation to near perfect, this part is super easy. If you didn’t – you are gonna have a baaad time.

Tools needed: circular saw or miter saw (optional), work stands, framing nailer, tape measure, carpenter triangle.

Supplies needed: lumber, collated nails.

Start by cutting your rim joists to size. Set them together, and start marking where your lateral joists will be attached. This is where the cool part is: no tape measure needed. A carpenter triangle is exactly a foot on one side, so if your joists are 1’4” apart, simply slide the triangle along the rim joist, mark a foot, slide four inches more, make the mark on both rim joists and set an X where your lateral joists will be attached. Keep running along the board like that. Very precise, perfect right angle every time – and a ton of time saved.

Mark your future joist attachment on the broad side, then flip the triangle and transfer your location precisely onto another joist.

Mark your future joist attachment on the broad side, then flip the triangle and transfer your location precisely onto another joist.

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