Thursday, September 19, 2013

Installing the Subfloor

I have decided to install the subfloor and insulate simultaneously. I found that the loose foam scrapes are very light and easily blown around by the wind. So I am installing a couple panels of the subfloor, then stuffing in the loose foam insulation, then sealing up the remainder of the subfloor.

It was a very exciting moment when I finished screwing in the first subfloor panel. I was alone in the field working by myself and I let out a huge hoot and did a little happy dance on my new little 4'x8' subfloor. On the other side of the 28 acre parcel I heard a reply hoot, I think it was from Kevin and Allie, which made me smile. Neighbors through the woods, what a wonderful thing!

I am finding that this tiny house is just barely workable for my one woman show. The 3/4" plywood panels that I am installing as sub-floor are pretty heavy. I am extremely fortunate that I started lifting some free weights a few weeks ago in an attempt to get into shape for my TH build. I can definitely tell that had I not been strength training I would not be able to maneuver some of the TH lumber and plywood alone without injuring myself.

Going solo on the TH build has lead me to discover that I need to be creative. When I was installing the first few panels of subfloor I found that they were 'floating' a bit after sinking the first couple screws. Subfloor moving over even 1/4" during install can have a cascading affect that can render you up a creek on the last couple panels. So here is a trick I devised... in order to keep plywood in place take a couple nails and sink them near the corners pinching the panel tightly. It worked like a charm! In these pictures you can see both my nail pinch trick and some of the recycled spray foam insulation I am using for the TH floor.

Another trick that I discovered is pre-drilling the holes for the screws. I ended up stripping a couple screw bits prior to coming up with this splendid idea! You just need to make sure that the drill bit is one of two sizes smaller in diameter than your screws.

I am also getting creative at finding cheap labor. My daughter had some girlfriends over so I started talking up the zip line that reaches across the swimming hole. Of course the teens jumped at the chance to go out to the farm "while I worked." In between their exploring walks I got them to help stuff foam by pushing it in the floor cavities with their legs while sitting. They saved me at least an hour of work. Thank you Ellie, Maddie and Alista for all of your help!  :-)

Well my hard day of work paid off. My supervisor (Buddy my dog) was pleased with my progress. I was able to insulate and secure 4 of the 7.5 subfloor panels. I also buttoned up the site with a large 3 mil plastic sheet to keep out any rain this week. As Buddy and I were leaving I noticed the beautiful sunset and just had to take a picture to share a little piece of my new home with all of you :-)



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