Heavy Metal

July 3, 2016

Soooo, maybe it’s been almost 4 months since my last post, and this blog is embarrassingly behind. I apologize for the delay in updates. Do you guys even remember what this blog is about? We’re building a tiny house, you’ve been coming to this site to follow along, and then you were abandoned about 4 months ago with no word on what was going on anymore…? Ring a bell? Yeah, sorry about that.

Yes, lots of projects are being worked on, but life got really crazy for a while there and the blog had to take a back seat. More like the blog was moved to the trunk and forgotten about…completely, for a long time. But now, I’m back, and we’re going to jump right in! I was planning a super long catch-you-up-on-the-many-projects-all-at-once post, but that seemed a little too daunting. Instead, I’m going to try to keep these next few posts a bit shorter. I usually try to wait until one project is completely finished and write about the whole process at once, but the next few posts will probably be about the beginning of a project with a follow up later on. Otherwise, I just don’t think I’ll get caught up!

Today, though, is all about how we’re super hardcore metal people now. I’m not talking about metal music, because let’s be real, that stuff is awful. I’m talking about metal siding! From the beginning, we decided a good way to cut down on weight and cost of the exterior of the house was to incorporate tin siding. We special ordered specific sizes of the corrugated tin siding from Lowes because cutting metal is a pain. Cutting curvy metal is an even bigger pain. We wanted someone else to deal with that headache, so we ordered our pieces measured and cut to certain lengths in an effort to make our lives easier. Unfortunately, there was some sort of mix up and what was supposed to take 2 weeks to get to us ended up taking over 2 months! This was a bummer because we couldn’t work on any other part of the exterior of the house until the metal was up.

While we waited, we worked on the wheel wells. We still needed to close in the wheel wells with plywood sheathing, plus line the outside with metal flashing to protect them from water or debris coming off the spinning wheels. Eric built a box around the wheels, making sure that the height of the box was high enough that the wheels could never touch it, but not too high that space was wasted. The wheel well boxes will cut into the living space inside the house, so we wanted the boxes as small as possible.

Once the boxes were built, Eric covered all the seams of the boards with flashing tape. He then started to attach the metal flashing. While the metal would protect the wheel wells from water and debris, it also helps the wheel area blend into the rest of the house. Since we were going to have metal siding on the bottom half of the house, the metal flashing would help the wheel wells match that look. The metal flashing came in sheets that had to be unrolled, trimmed, and screwed into place. It was a little awkward working around the wheels, but soon enough, the metal was attached and the wheel wells were finished.

Open wheel wells

Open wheel wells. Let’s get those things covered up!

Closing in the wheels.

Closing in the wheels.

All closed up! The house is officially completely closed in!!!

All closed up! The house is officially completely closed in!!!

Lining the wheel wells with metal flashing for protection.

Lining the wheel wells with metal flashing for protection.

Awkwardly working in between the wheels.

Awkwardly working in between the wheels.

The first layer of metal flashing is on. Now to finish the whole box.

The first layer of metal flashing is on. Now to finish the whole box.

The entire wheel well on each side is completely wrapped in metal flashing!

The entire wheel well on each side is completely wrapped in metal flashing!

 

We finally got the shipment of our metal in, so it was time to get going on the bottom of the walls. The metal was tricky because we had to be sure to keep the bottom of each sheet even, since the top of the metal wouldn’t be showing, eventually be covered by wood trim. This was a bit harder to manage than just looking at the top, because we were trying to hold the metal up, keep it level, match the bottom up, and screw it into place. Lining up the bottom was just awkward and difficult while trying to do everything else. Plus, we really had to be careful to not slice our hands open on the sharp metal edges.

We got our shipment in! We can finally get started!

We got our shipment in! We can finally get started! (Also, I’m very glad I didn’t slice my fingers off holding this without gloves!)

 

Eventually, we got the hang of it and got into a rhythm. It was really hard to keep each sheet level because of the way the metal is wavy, it would stretch out sometimes throwing off the balance. We just had to shrug that off and do the best we could as we worked our way around the house. The edge of each sheet was overlaid with another and screwed into place, with the same screws that have the rubber seal. Note for the future: start on the back of the house to work out any kinks in the process, so mess ups won’t show up on the front. Thankfully, we didn’t make any huge, glaring mistakes that stand out too much. When we got to the wheel wells, we had to cut a section out of the square sheet of metal for the opening of the wheels. We left a few extra inches to be wrapped around the edge of the wall into the well. This helped make that transition look nicer, plus it’s just a bit more protection for the wells.

Our metal working tools needed for this project. Missing in this picture is our drill, rubber sealed screws, and the level.

Our metal working tools needed for this project: metal snippers and metal clampy benders (that’s the official name, I promise). Missing in this picture is our drill, rubber sealed screws, and the level.

The metal is overlapped and screwed down.

The metal is overlapped and screwed down.

Making sure the bottom of the metal is lined up, since the top wont show under the wood trim.

Making sure the bottom of the metal is lined up, since the top wont show under the wood trim.

Making sure the bottom of the metal is lined up, since the top wont show under the wood trim.

Once the bottom is lined up, the top can be secured.

Working our way around the house.

Working our way around the house.

Time for the wheel well. Eric is cutting out a section of the metal for the wheel well opening.

Time for the wheel well. Eric is cutting out a section of the metal for the wheel well opening.

The corrugated metal is wrapped around the edge and secured.

The corrugated metal is wrapped around the edge and secured.

The metal is finished!

The metal is finished!

The metal is finished! The flashing in the wheel wells matches the metal siding. Looking good- now on to the trim!

The metal is finished! The flashing in the wheel wells matches the metal siding. Looking good- now on to the trim! (Also, ignore the weird outlines of the green siding. We re-sealed the edges of the siding and re-painted it so it no longer looks like that.)

 

Hanging up the metal really wasn’t too difficult. Really, our biggest hangup was that it took 2 months to get the stuff! I really love the look of the metal next to the green siding. This was a huge step forward to finishing the outside of the house. The only thing we have left for the outside is the wood trim (…which is turning out to be a giant headache, but more on that later!) Thanks for hanging in there for almost 4 months for this post! Lots more is still happening, so I’ll be updating this soon. I promise! (Famous last words….)

 

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