Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Starting to look like a shop!

Our first delivery of wood came on Monday. We didn't want to leave a bunch of wood sitting around too long (avoiding warpage), so this load mainly consisted of what we'll need for the floor and the front wall framing - some 2x4s, 2x6s, 1x4 fir tongue and groove for the floor and some plywood.

Then on Wednesday evening I gave Arlene an early birthday present.

After talking to several folks about the benefits of screws vs nails for framing, we went with ring-shank nails. Apparently screws will hold better than regular nails, but tend to snap under shearing loads. Nails are more likely to bend, but could wiggle out over time if we move the trailer frequently. Ring shank nails are a compromise between the two and have the added advantage of speed (with Arlene's new toy).

In general, I tend to assume that everything takes longer to do than you initially think it will. Since we have a deadline for our project (July / August), some of our choices reflect an interest in speed. For example, I've read several times that folks found used trailers for sale on the net. When we really started looking for a used one there were none available, so we bought the one we have. If we had more time and were willing to wait for the right sized trailer to become available, we could have saved anywhere from $1,000 to $2,000. But we also thought that a used trailer could have rust, need rewiring, break work or other problems that would take us time and money too.

As it is, there are several modifications we need to make to our trailer before we can build and put the floor framing on. In fact, the Fencl plans give a general idea of the floor framing, but indicate that modifications will be needed depending on the trailer. Our trailer is different enough from the basic plans that we'll need to employ some creative problem solving...

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