Framing the end walls

Framed the end walls today, which felt a bit sluggish due to the awkward work surface and being out of practice.

We had to remember to compensate for the 2 1/2 inch difference between finished floor height and trailer flange to make sure the windows were in the right place. There’s no substitute for just standing the wall up before the final nails go in and just seeing how the opening looks and feels.

It’s surprising how much thought needs to go into something so simple as a framed wall. Sheathing spacing, insulation spacing, structural members, windows and doors, plumbing, electrical, interior cladding, exterior siding, even the roof needs to get factored in so you don’t back yourself into a corner later.

I’m minimizing framing wherever I can to reduce thermal bridging and make more space for insulation. Like most people who adopt these ideas my strategy is a home brew of conventional and advanced framing based on what I know is strong enough and what won’t make life too complicated. I think the gains are significant enough to make it worth the effort, although it’s hard to say without doing real thermal calculations, which I don’t know how to do! Just for my own curiosity I’d like to find someone with that skill set to run the numbers for advanced vs conventional framing on a tiny house.

Framing lighter does mean paying more careful attention to fastening and wood selection. Some nailed joints are backed with brackets, hangers, or structural screws. I have a pile of reclaimed wood to choose from so with each piece I look at the application and decide. Corners and openings get the older tight grain wood, insulation bays and sheet nailing get the soft, knotty, white wood, sills and headers the very best CVG fir.

One thing I might regret was a last minute decision to use pressure treated lumber for my sill plate. I’ve been told this is unnecessary and I believe that it probably is, I’m just visualizing condensation on the cold metal trailer flange and wondering what that will do to the sill in 30 or more years. PT seemed like cheap insurance, although I might feel differently in the morning!

– Brian

Follow along with us on Instagram »

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to top