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Siding - Closing In on the Finish


As I write this post the mercury in the thermometer outside my door is dropping steadily toward zero. Tonight will be the first night of the season with sub-zero temperatures. It hardly seems possible that just three weeks ago, when we put the siding on the equipment shed, the days were still reaching 50 degree highs.

The final stages of the equipment shed were on a tight schedule. We had to have the building complete enough to move into by the week before Thanksgiving or we’d risk having to wait until spring before transferring belongings from (expensive) storage units in Burlington. We were lucky that November was mild and relatively dry (as Vermont Novembers go). On November 11th we put up the first of the siding boards along the front of the loft.


Marion cut the boards and passed them to me. I swung a hammer and cursed the narrow ring-shanked siding nails. The work took longer than I’d anticipated. By the end of the day we had only completed one side.


The end wall siding involved 26.5 degree cuts at the tops of the boards and more rungs up on the ladder. In the photo above, I’m trimming the pegs in the rafters flush to accommodate the siding.


In order to prevent water from flowing between the posts and the concrete piers we installed flashing at all of the post bases.


By November 14th we were closing in the final side along the back of the barn.


For rough sawn hemlock, the fit had been incredible. The only piece that needed trimming was the final plank. Siding complete!


Before moving in we wanted to get the shed’s floor laid. On top of the base we placed a layer of “driveway fabric” which functions to keep the final layer (crushed stone and stone dust) from being pushed down into the fill below. We’ll likely haul in another 7 yards of the material in 2011, but for now we have a useable (and level) floor.


In the photo above, the fabric can be seen extending down the bank behind the building where it will help prevent erosion under the stone retaining wall that we’ll put in next year.


Nothing left but the final touches, but ready for moving in.


In the spring we’ll trim the siding along the base of the walls and around the bays. We also plan to install trim under the eaves and along the gables. Those details can wait for warmer days.


After roughing out the loft door there was no time to spare. We were off to the U-Haul rental in Burlington where we hooked up a trailer and made two trips across the state with stored belongings. We moved in, despite a hard November rain and yet another skidding, sliding U-Haul adventure. Then, it was off to Boston Harbor for two days with my high school rowing crew for the Northeast Championships and, finally, a well deserved Thanksgiving break (during which my body announced, “I’ve had enough” and succumbed to a week-long head cold).

Winter weather has since settled in. We’re ready.


We've been digging vege garden here - its Summer and after all that work I, too, have a head cold!

The barn looks wonderful!

viv in nz

Great job you have done! Congratulations from a Ice frozen Sweden!

An elegant building that will grace the land for longer than any of us will will be around. Well worth your efforts!

Very nice. Hand made quality in natural materials. I just love what y'all have accomplished.

I love your work and can't wait until we are posting similar images for our own project this spring at http://www.blakestinyhouse.com


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