The Scrap House

Head in the sand. Or to the sand. Or something. | May 1, 2009

It’s true you never know where you’re going to get lumber. Today we were delayed in the construction of our roof as we didn’t have a piece long enough to use as a ridgeboard. After school, I went over to Hyatt’s house. Hyatt is one of the four members of the build team. He said “We’re going to the beach. Lumber. Get in the truck.” Well, who am I to question that? His mom had seen some 2×6’s on the beach that had washed up. So on our way we were. I live in Hatteras, NC. In the old days, whenever a ship wreck would wash up on the shore, they’d salvage the lumber and build a house. Boats always used straight high quality lumber, so it was a great, and free, source. Many homes here were built that way. Today, while this wasn’t a boat, I felt a spiritual connection to those early settlers of the island. Here go the photos.

The lumber as we found it.

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After about 45 minutes of digging, we were able to flip it. We realised it was actually part of a board walk.

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We ran back to the house to get drills to dissasemble it. That decking is the plastic composite stuff. It’s HEAVY.

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There’s Hyatt getting kung-fu with the drills. The screws were torx bits and stainless steel. Those we shall be using again…

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Post dissasembly. Each of those weighed about 20 lbs. We carried them the quarter mile over the beach back to the truck. And then for the four 16-foot 2×6’s. Score.

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Not really in the truck, but atleast near! Having a truck is a good thing.

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Side profile for drama.

So that’s where our ridgeboard and probably some other roof pieces came from. It was about a three hour process in total. We’ll most likely use the composite “wood” in the bathroom and maybe the kitchen. It’s VERY expensive to buy new. The 2×6’s were in great shape. A little wet, but perfect otherwise. Never make assumptions about where you can and can’t find lumber, aye? As a sidenote, last year an entire 50 foot container of Doritos washed up. More tasty, but not nearly as structurally sound. Living on an island has its perks.

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7 Comments »

  1. found you on the tiny house blog i’ve been following – great score on the boardwalk!

    just make sure that the plastic wood is safe for indoor use – sometimes the chemical makeup of decking is treated to endure outside – and the fumes and offgassing can make you sick.

    Comment by Heidi Renee — May 2, 2009 @ 10:25 am

  2. LOL… I think you just redefined “scavenging”. Digging stuff out of the sane on the beach is really pushing the envelope!

    Comment by Michael Janzen — May 2, 2009 @ 11:21 pm

    • No matter how far you push the envelope, it’s still stationary. 😉

      Comment by austinminiman — May 2, 2009 @ 11:29 pm

  3. What a cool project. Best of luck!

    Comment by over the cubicle wall — May 2, 2009 @ 11:42 pm

    • Thanks. I’ll get another update up by Monday afternoon.

      Comment by austinminiman — May 2, 2009 @ 11:57 pm

  4. I bet you would be surprised how many people are keeping up with your project! I think you also underestimate the impact young adults can have, if they get out and do some thing. You said that you are not doing it for any cause, but you are showing that it can be done for or by the homeless, or for green reasons. Even giving inspiration to people like me, who like the whole small house thing, but have no disposable income.
    I think it would be cool if schools around the country would do this, you guys are getting some good skills and experience too.

    Comment by Elizabeth Goertz — May 3, 2009 @ 3:15 pm

  5. that girl has a nice ass. good project

    Comment by poop — May 10, 2009 @ 7:00 pm


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About author

This blog is dedicated to an experiment a group of three other fellow students and I are doing at our school in Buxton, NC. My Drafting III class and I set out to see if we could build a house for free. It's small, but functional. All the materials come out of dumpsters. And most of all, it's working.

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