Building an Outhouse, Part Two

Last night we had a really powerful rain. It was so powerful, it somehow blasted water into the yurt from places we couldn’t begin to identify! I mopped it up, and lifted up the felt where it was slightly damp, to give it a chance to air out, and decided that my next priority was to try to seal up any remaining leaks in the yurts. 

This morning, we enjoyed another porridge breakfast (when you don’t have a refrigerator, porridge is a pretty popular breakfast), and discussed some plans, as well as compiled a bit of a shopping list. While finishing up our list, we were treated to a visit from Mummu, who was just checking in on us.

After she left, I headed over to my outhouse project again. It’s progressing both faster than I expected, but slower than I think others expect. I’m taking my time with it, and I think that perhaps I’m overbuilding it. I suppose inch thick walls and roof, and two inch thick floor, are a bit overkill. On the floor, I forgot to make room for joists, so I just figured that two inch thick floor boards wouldn’t sag noticeably over time anyway – and then I still did string some two by twos under that, and piled rocks up against them so everything is rock (pardon the pun) solid.

Today I worked a bit more on the first wall. I want it to be very bright and airy inside, not a dark, dingy place, full of cobwebs and mosquitoes. As such, I’m going to put in lots of windows.

Grandpa thought my roof pitch was a bit shallow, but acknowledged that it really only has to shed rain. It can handle any snow load one could imagine.

Kenny and Donna stopped by around lunch to do a short inspection, and I think they were pleased with the look. The next step was to put up that all important screen in the window openings. Unfortunately, I had no screen.

Grandpa offered to go with me to the dump after lunch, and we found loads and loads of treasures there! Including almost enough screen to complete the outhouse – but when I brought it home and started cutting it to size, I realized that one big reason people throw out screens, is because they have holes in them :(. I think I will have most of my windows covered, but I may need to get a bit more screen to complete the project. In the morning, I will cut up the remaining pieces and assess my needs from there.

At the dump, we also discovered the steel remains of someone’s gazebo. I grabbed all the sections, in the hopes that I can use them to create a frame to mount my solar panels on. We also picked up some tea lights and copper wire for Grandpa, and I found a good plastic bin (maybe for sawdust?) and another nic-nac that may be revealed in a future post. Oh yeah, and some sort of medical “IV” type stand, that Grandpa thinks I could use for the solar panels, but we’ll have to see; it’s sturdy, but I don’t want to risk a few hundred dollars worth of equipment on something unless I’m really sure of it.

When we got back, I got the whole family involved in running a few strips of duct tape around the bottom edge of both yurts. I wondered if somehow water was being wicked back up off the bottom edge of the canvas via the felt. It also was obvious that at the corners of the doors there was a definite airspace. Perhaps this will cut down on the random mosquitoes that appear after we are in bed?

Then it started to rain. I puttered in the dojo tent a bit, then headed to Mummu’s for another delightful supper. The rain got worse and I ended up dozing until Kenny was out of his bath (Tuesdays are bath days for Grandpa and Kenny). The rain is now even worse, and I’m back at the yurts. There is still a bit of water coming in under one door, but it’s far less than before. We’ll have to do some more brainstorming on that one.

Kenny is running around the yurts, burning off the huge post-supper eating binge he embarked on after emerging from his bath, and then we’re all ready to climb into bed for another evening of listening to the patter of the rain on the canvas.



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