Looking to build a "small shed" (8x10) to store excess wood/garden
While I have close to 2 acres, the most likely spots are a bit close
to the house.
I have a spot in mind, but as I've gone through a variety of plans,
designs, I find that the overall roof height is a bit imposing for the
site I've blocked off. I think I can modify one or more of the designs
by reducing the wall height and the pitch. I don't have to worry
about snow, just rain.
Most of the 8x10 shed designs seem to have 8x12 or 9x12 pitch.
I'm thinking of reducing that to 3x12.
My question, from an aesthetics point of view would that low pitch
look odd on a 8x10 shed?
I have some boards I put up to give a sense of the heights that
are in the plans I have and to be honest, the heights just looks huge.
something more discrete and not so noticable. Perhaps I should
look for another spot?
Sounds like a good excuse to use the SketchUp (free 3-D Modeling
program). You could model all of the important features of your yard
and move various incarnations of your shed around. You could start with
a photo of your yard taken from Google Earth and get everything to
scale. This can be done alot faster than you may think. After doing
that, there will be few surprises for you. I find it mildly amusing
that you can do all of this without even going outside. I can verify my
lot size to the inch (maybe a foot, I forget) with Google Earth.
No problem. The planner also has a misc. category tool which you can size to
any dimension you want. You can use that to substitute for any planned shed
furniture like a potting bench or something similar.
My first shed was 8x12 and it was close to useless. Filled that sucker
up in the blink of an eye, and it was a bitch to get stuff out because
it was packed to the gills. My 90 year old neighbor yelled at me when I
built it, saying a shed can't be too big. I told him because of
property lines, that was as big as I could go. He said put some of it
on his property, he didn't care. I said what about when your not
here... He said "where am I going?" He was 92 and still worked 7 days
a week, 12 hours a day...
My next shed was 14' long by 16' wide with a second floor. I designed
it 25 years ago with Design Cad and it took me 40 hours or more to
figure out how to use design cad. I could have done it on paper in an
hour. Sketchup would be the way to go today, but that too has a nice
learning curve, but well worth it.
I made it so the first floor was 6'2" so I wouldn't have to duck. The
roof I made to fit full sheets of plywood. The shed at the peak is 15'
because the building guy said if it was over 15' it would be taxed and
subject to all the building nonsense governments impose upon. The
second floor is GREAT because you can store so much more, and it doesn't
cost much more to build.
I tucked mine into some trees in the back of my property. Here's a
picture I took last year. Still in perfect shape after 25 years and
numerous snows up to 3'. This shed is just right for me, not too big,
not too small. I have to say it was one of the most satisfying things
I've designed and built. Oh, I remember cruising a local shed dealer
for design ideas, some of which I incorporated into mine.
My suggestion is to build it big as you can afford. 2 acres is enough
land to accumulate lots of lawn and garden stuff. Before you start
designing, go to a place that sells sheds and look them over, see what
If you use sketchup, you can get a really good idea of what it will look
like. If you build an eyesore, which many sheds are, hide it. If you
make it aesthetically pleasing, you can put it in the open. I would
think 2 acres is plenty of room for a rather large shed or small barn.
You Can't Fix Stupid, but You Can Vote it Out!
Yes, it turned out nice. I saw a 16 long by 14' wide commercial jobs,
but none that were wider than deep. It looked good on paper, and it
looks even better live.
Up to 3' so far, and it's built of 2x4's on 24" center's. I made the
trusses myself, but used those metal truss plates to connect them. They
were flimsy as all get out until I got some structure on them.
I'm not a builder but knew these are commonly used in houses, but I am a
woodworker and after I built the shed, and even though the trusses
seemed strong as hell, the next year I made wooden plates out of scrap
plywood, cut them on the band saw and glued and nailed them to every
joint, right over top of the metal plates. I figured the only thing
that could go wrong is the joints spread as the roof transfers all the
weight onto the side walls. I imagine it could take quite a bit of snow.
The biggest snow we've had in the past 25 years was supposedly 3' about
10 years ago. I measured it because no where did I see 3', and the
media always lies through their teeth, and best I got was 2 feet, so
they were off by about 33%, about right for the lame ass media.
Last year we got 2 feet, which I measured to about 19 inches. The shed
is nestled in trees, and gets less snow than out in the open.
You Can't Fix Stupid, but You Can Vote it Out!
Where did you get the truss plates? I couldn't buy them as I'm not
certified to design wooded trusses. From the Simpson Strong-Tie web
"Can I use your mending plates for truss fabrication?
The mending plates shown in the Simpson Strong-Tie catalog are not
intended for structural use. They have not been tested for structural
applications and are not load rated. Metal Plate Connected Wood
Trusses require specific design criteria as outlined by the Truss
Plate Institute and in the current ANSI/TPI documents. Software
specific to truss design is available through a number of truss plate
suppliers. For more information regarding truss plate suppliers,
contact the Truss Plate Institute at (608) 833-5900. "
I hold that kind of thing in the same contempt I hold stick-in
connectors on light switches and wall outlets:
They're fatal errors just waiting to happen.
The more passions and desires one has,
the more ways one has of being happy.
Really? So the guys who engineered and spec'd out those switches were all
idiots? I suppose there are thousands of houses burning down every year
and the government's hiding it all because of the powerful Leviton lobby.
"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
I realize they are not burning down houses, but I don't usually use them on
my own work. I have had to troubleshoot non working circuits, and traced
the problem to a stab connector not making reliable contact. Both times,
the failure happened at around 7 years, in an outlet that had not been
I've never even -seen- a circuit breaker without screw terminals.
"Human nature itself is evermore an advocate for liberty.
There is also in human nature a resentment of injury, and
indignation against wrong. A love of truth and a veneration
of virtue. These amiable passions, are the latent spark. If
the people are capable of understanding, seeing and feeling
the differences between true and false, right and wrong,
virtue and vice, to what better principle can the friends of
mankind apply than to the sense of this difference?"
In the US, "plug-in" c'bkrs are used in residential load center panels
while "bolt-on" c'bkrs are used in industrial panel boards.
As far as the c'bkr it self is concerned, both c'bkrs have the same
The load connections on any breaker I've seen are always screw types,
but the connection from the panel buss bar to the input of the breaker
is often via a spring clip. (Square D type QO, for example.)
Peter Bennett, VE7CEI
peterbb4 (at) interchange.ubc.ca
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