The Cob Wood Shed 3/4 Building Update

by ziggy on November 3, 2010 -- 0 comments -- Follow


Wow, it’s been a goodly long while since the first (and only) cob wood shed post. Much has happened since then, including the finishing of the cob walls and the reciprocal roof frame, but here’s a few older photos of things in the works.

Half of the walls of the shed were built with the recycled cob that was left from destroying the cob bed and bench in the house! We jammed in lots and lots of rubble along the way, too. The shed has two east-facing windows, and five ventilation boxes. Three of the boxes were installed low in the walls on the north, east, and west sides, and two higher up to promote air circulation throughout the building. We live in a humid climate and mold and mildew is a concern here. Hopefully these vents will help with that. They should help to keep wood dry, as well.


Low ventilation opening right above urbanite foundation

The walls are pretty thin, certainly less than a foot, not sure exactly how wide, but they taper a tiny bit at the top to be even thinner, perhaps 5-6 inches.

It’s been fun to think about the different uses of the building throughout the construction process, but I keep reminding myself that trying to do too much with a single space usually results in a building that doesn’t do any one thing really well. So really, this is a wood shed, with a small amount of storage space. It’s interesting to think that it could be a little guest house, but it’s unlikely that function could be served well if it truly is a wood shed. Maybe if we decide to build an entirely different shed somewhere else, although we hardly have any room for one.

April and I knew that we wanted some kind of porch roof to extend over the entryway, but when it came down to it, we realized a large covered area off the front of the building would be impractical and cut into the open workspace on our leasehold. So we scrapped that idea and instead decided on a very small roof over the entryway. It’s mostly for aesthetics, but it keeps weather away from the door, and gives us a small space to hang tools, and perhaps garlic, herbs, etc. from, too. This was really fun to build, actually. The picture below is from before the rafters went on, by the way.


The mini porch roof

There are two posts, both black locust, sunk into a hole two feet deep into the ground. The beam above is an osage branch, appropriately curved. I did a sort of lame non-timber framing sort of connection between the two: basically the bottom of the osage beam is flattened on either end (and not well, at that), and then the beam is spiked into the posts with a giant spiral shank nail on either end. It’s certainly solid, but the awkwardness of the curved beam caused me a little bit of difficulty. I then cut in a bit on either post and sent a heavy duty (and well-aged) 2×4 down from the wall to the post and nailed it in place. Once those 2x4s were cobbed in, they felt super solid.

More soon again…

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