Cabin build

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Rusty18

Burning Hunk
Nov 3, 2018
101
Belpre oh
So the plan is to build some sort of shelter for a hunting cabin/summer get away. Realistically looking at a year or two before any construction actually happens but I want to go ahead and get the design figured out. The plan is to build it 14x30 ish (will change the outer dimensions to make siding materials work out to whole sheets but that’s the general size).
That brings me to the first hurdle, what is the best build for tolerating humidity/incorporating passive climate control? The second hurdle is how to build as much pest resistance in as possible?
There will be no electricity other than an inverter or generator when we are there. Use wise, at least in the beginning will be a few weekends though the year with a week or two in the fall.
We are leaning towards a build on stilts (2’ minimum) to get away from any ground Induced moisture. For siding we are thinking metal over a bubble insulation/vapor barrier or board sheathing with t1-11. The roof will be metal over bubble insulation and have a generous overhang.

Any suggestions/words of wisdom?
 

Grizzerbear

Minister of Fire
Feb 12, 2019
1,167
SW Missoura
If it's going to sit on piers I assume you will put some kind of skirting up around the perimeter correct? Any water/drain lines? Regardless I would insulate the underside of the floors with spray foam or blueguard styrofoam. The latter is termite resistant. I would hire a pest professional to spray the soil around the piers as well which should last around 5 years. Our house is just shy of 1500 square feet and we have corrugated metal roofing and siding over....I believe the brand was low-e......bubble insulation with one side having a reflective side facing outdoors. I'm not educated enough on the facts of conduction and diffusion but I will say that I think it really helps to lower our cooling bills in the summer by keeping the exterior walls of the house cooler and therefore not transferring heat from outside to the inside. Just my 2 pennies
 

Rusty18

Burning Hunk
Nov 3, 2018
101
Belpre oh
If it's going to sit on piers I assume you will put some kind of skirting up around the perimeter correct? Any water/drain lines? Regardless I would insulate the underside of the floors with spray foam or blueguard styrofoam. The latter is termite resistant. I would hire a pest professional to spray the soil around the piers as well which should last around 5 years. Our house is just shy of 1500 square feet and we have corrugated metal roofing and siding over....I believe the brand was low-e......bubble insulation with one side having a reflective side facing outdoors. I'm not educated enough on the facts of conduction and diffusion but I will say that I think it really helps to lower our cooling bills in the summer by keeping the exterior walls of the house cooler and therefore not transferring heat from outside to the inside. Just my 2 pennies
We replaced the roof on our house in June of this year, put solex underlament under the metal (like what you have under your metal). We went from attic temps well over 120 to ten degrees above ambient. Last summer the ac was struggling to keep the house at 80 this summer after the roof upgrade it kept it at 73 with ease (new momma wanted it cool)!
Regarding the skirting, I had not planned on it. The area we are building is red clay, it will never not be releasing water(vapor) and I don’t want it confined under the building. In a few years when the ground has dried out some I may revisit that idea but at least in the beginning I do it plan on skirting.
We are planning on a sink with a drain outside to a dry well but no other plumbing or running water In the structure.
What did you use for insulation on the inside walls?
 
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SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
6,259
Downeast Maine
We are going to use the foil faced bubble wrap, both sides, on the inside of our house to try and help with keeping the radiant woodstove heat in the house. So far I have been thrilled with the performance of our Rockwool insulation. Higher R value than fiberglass, works when wet, pest resistant, easy to install, and the sound deadening is phenomenal. That bubble wrap stuff works best if you can create an air gap around it. We are going to staple it directly to our studs and then run horizontal strapping to hang diagonal or vertical boards.
 
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Grizzerbear

Minister of Fire
Feb 12, 2019
1,167
SW Missoura
We replaced the roof on our house in June of this year, put solex underlament under the metal (like what you have under your metal). We went from attic temps well over 120 to ten degrees above ambient. Last summer the ac was struggling to keep the house at 80 this summer after the roof upgrade it kept it at 73 with ease (new momma wanted it cool)!
Regarding the skirting, I had not planned on it. The area we are building is red clay, it will never not be releasing water(vapor) and I don’t want it confined under the building. In a few years when the ground has dried out some I may revisit that idea but at least in the beginning I do it plan on skirting.
We are planning on a sink with a drain outside to a dry well but no other plumbing or running water In the structure.
What did you use for insulation on the inside walls?

I hear ya. We ended up encapsulating our crawl space because of water vapor/condensation problems here. We got red clay here as well. On the walls we used r21 fiberglass. The walls are 2×6. We checked at spray foaming the whole house......but it was going to be quite a chunk.
 

festerw

Minister of Fire
Nov 16, 2009
524
Cambridge Springs, PA
There's some companies that make precast concrete buildings. Hard to beat them for insect and moisture resistance.

This obviously requires the room to get equipment there to set the pieces in place.
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
6,597
Northern NH
Lot to be said to pick up shipping container then insulating the interior with spray foam or foam board. As long as its blocked up off the ground its going to last a long time with minimal maintenance.
 

clancey

Minister of Fire
Feb 26, 2021
1,730
Colorado
I love overhangs and to me they are pretty over doorway entrances protecting the main door from the weather and other things you might want to place there...clancey
 

xman23

Minister of Fire
Oct 7, 2008
2,350
Lackawaxen PA
I know it varies greatly county to county. Check what the town requires when you build a live in structure. Water, septic, etc.
Keeping it off the ground sounds like what you should do, But no craw space that just traps moisture. The issue will be the animals that will be chewing through the floor, walls and roof. Defiantly needs special construction ideas. I have seen those shipping containers reworked that you wouldn't know what it was.
 

coaly

Fisher Moderator
Staff member
Dec 22, 2007
4,341
NE PA
Bare wood outside is my problem with my off grid cabin.

It is solid log from Finland and treated with Q-8 Log Oil containing Copper sulfate. That kills any insects that digest it, but carpenter bees bore in without digesting and lay eggs in the holes. Woodpeckers come for the larvae doing the most damage.

I wired mine with 12-2 just like you would for 110 v ac, but was planning solar panels to charge 12 volt batteries and only use 12 volt dc. for lights. I used Milwaukee 18 volt lanterns at first and only wanted power generated and stored there to charge them. I heat and cook with wood winters, propane range summer. With the advent of more electric vehicles I now have plans for using the wiring for AC supplied by the inverter in a EV truck such as a Ford Lightning. Wire the walls and ceiling for future use, you never know what there may be years from now for power that you could have used if wired before finishing. I was going to wire mine with heavy copper for low voltage but decided to wire just like ac into a breaker panel and supply that with low voltage. Glad I did since 110 ac is soon to become a reality there for me.

I leave Catch Master glue boards in most rooms to monitor insects and was surprised to find black ants moving in at different times. Seems like after a few days of rain I would get some. No food or water leaks, good overhangs and gutters, but dense woods all around me. Just took care of any overhanging trees and cutting back more for better dryness and insect control. Tried to keep shaded for cooling in summer, that doesn’t work for dampness and insects. Each area has its own challenges.
 

Rusty18

Burning Hunk
Nov 3, 2018
101
Belpre oh
I know it varies greatly county to county. Check what the town requires when you build a live in structure. Water, septic, etc.
Keeping it off the ground sounds like what you should do, But no craw space that just traps moisture. The issue will be the animals that will be chewing through the floor, walls and roof. Defiantly needs special construction ideas. I have seen those shipping containers reworked that you wouldn't know what it was.
It’s in bfe, usually the electric company is who dictates what you have to have before they will hook you up. Since I’m not hooking up to the grid they aren’t a concern.
 

walhondingnashua

Feeling the Heat
Jul 23, 2016
402
ohio
I have been working on plans for a structure like you are suggesting for in the woods behind my house for my son's 10th birthday (next year). I think I want to try a small log cabin. I know you said metal but the log walls are the only cost (no insulation, vapor barriers, siding, etc). There is a place in amish country that mills pre-cut D logs to what length/ dimensions you want. Construction will be easy and transporting the logs into the woods is easier than panels.

I want to use stilts (12" or so) but use concrete rather than wood.

As far as power is concerned, if you are only using the power for lighting, consider propane lights. We have them in a cabin in the UP and far prefer them over electric. No generator sound and they use very little gas.