Cabin 2010 - Still Gridless, but not entirely Powerless

Cabin 2010 Photo Gallery

  • 2010 - State of the Cabin

Cabin 2010

About the Photos

In the summer of 2010, we made two trips to the cabin. The first trip, I made a bit more progress on taping and mudding the sheetrock we put up in 2001 and 2002. With no running water, this is a bit of a chore. We also need to move furniture out of the way to do this, and the weather hasn't always been cooperative.

On the second trip, we installed a small photovoltaic panel we picked up at Harbor Freight on sale, and a marine deep-cycle storage battery, so we could have a bit more light for early-morning cooking and late-night reading, plus a ready source of power to pump up the air mattress and vacuum the bugs without having to lug our car-starting unit down from the car.

In order to install the solar panel, we decided to finally restain the south side of the cabin, which has been weathering for 11 years and desperately needed a fresh coat of stain. The shelf for the solar array was made from left-over siding and 2x4s, a bit weathered, but serviceable. The shelf is bolted to studs; the battery is in a weather-proof box under the house, and the regulator inside. On our next trip, I plan to install a bit longer battery cables to move the regulator up to a more usable height, but for now, we are using the small cables that came with the panel kit.

About the Cabin

In the spring of 1999, we purchased a set of plans from Mother Earth News for a primitive weekend cabin--originally from the Tiny, Tiny House book--and modified it slightly to accommodate our needs and the availability of windows and doors. We eliminated the dormer, extending the dormer profile the width of the cabin. The loft, which was originally only along the upper long side, we made full-width over half the cabin, leaving a high bay for the living room. One of the reasons for doing this was because we raised the dining extension, which was--inthe plan--a sunspace covered with plastic, to accommodate the picture window we found for $100.

We also insulated and sheet-rocked the cabin to make it a four-season mountain retreat, and installed a composting toilet insead of the camper porta-potty in the original plan. We finished framing and staining in the fall of 1999, and gradually added the insulation and sheetrock, upgraded the doors, and added storm doors, along with cabinetry and shelving, including a corner hutch that has been in my family since before I was born. The flooring in the living/dining/kitchen area is made from the cabinet fronts in our Missoula house when we updated the kitchen in 2000.

About This Web Page

A few years ago, I wrote a program to turn a collection of pictures into a slideshow, for another site I manage for EAA Chapter 517. This page uses that program, a PHP script that builds the Javascript program that actually generates the slideshow on your computer. You will need Javascript enabled in your browser to run it. You can start and stop the show at any time, from any photo in the thumbnails. The photos were resized for the web using the ImageMajick 'convert' utility. Enjoy.