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.
Nailing the sheets is easy on the edges, because you see the studs and the plates, but you also need to nail them to the studs in the middle, and that’s a royal pain. You could draw the lines for every stud where it’s supposed to run, and use that as a guide, but it will take forever. I found an easier approach to use a plumb bob – hang it from the top where the stud runs and nail along the thread.
Even then, the studs may warp a bit, and you can miss them easily. With 6 inch o.c. (on center) or 12 inch o.c. nailing schedule, this turns out into a lot of nails you have to extract and re-set. This was probably the most frustrating part of construction so far.
Anyway, the solid walls were easy, and then we get into walls with openings: windows and doors. This is where I ran into my first “uh-oh”: it matters not only how far the studs are spaced apart (I followed the code, 16 inches between any), but also where you start. You want your 4-foot sheet edge to end on a stud! And if it ends up in mid-air, there are two things you can do: cut the OSB sheet to the nearest stud and continue (but you will waste more OSB sheets this way) or install an extra stud. At roughly $2.70 for an eight-footer 2×4, it’s not even worth the effort of mucking around with the sheathing.
Why this happened is because I altered the plans and created a window where there was none, shifting some studs around. As a result of the shift, I now have to add an extra stud for the sheathing join in the pic below:
What about the window? The window is easy. You don’t pre-cut the opening – instead you cover it completely and then cut out your window from the inside using framing as the guide. Reciprocating saw is the tool of choice:
Finally, we get to the door. The door opening is large enough to warrant cutting the OSB sheets and then nailing them around the door. Set up your circular saw guides and do your runs.