This video is very long. There is an extra bit of video after the credits of how the final project behaves in high wind though, so it isn't quite as long as the time stamp would have you believe. There are Chapters embedded into it so you can easily skip to the next section if you feel you have see enough of me drilling holes. Each Chapter has it's own section in the blog as well if you want to find the details on one particular step.
The most concise details are in the spreadsheet I made. Click the links below for a PDF you can save with links you can click to go to the vendor websites, or access a spreadsheet in Google Sheets.
IntroductionBack in August I started thinking about how much nicer it would be to work on Ally Mo if I wasn't so pressured by the weather. If there was some kind of roof over it then I could take out the windows and not have to rush to get something in the hole. I could have lots of fresh air during the disgusting part of removing all the mouse infested cabinets and paneling and insulation. And it could provide shade. On a cool winter day it would stay cool enough for me to work in full PPE.
- Aesthetic - It needs to look nice. I need something to boost my confidence and make me want to work on the project
- Cost - It should cost less per square foot than a comparable ready-made canopy kit or else I'll feel dumb for having these high aesthetic standards at the cost of a lot of extra work
Research and DevelopmentI did some research looking at photos of midcentury carports to see what they had going on.
Eventually I stumbled into the farming sector and learned about caterpillar tunnels and hoop houses.
Tunnel Vision Hoops Caterpillar Tunnel
I liked the curve of the 20' of 1" pipe so I decided to move forward. I made a spreadsheet with a bill of materials and got an idea of what I was looking at for cost. I figured it was going to be around $700 minimum. I allowed as how I would assess how flimsy it was and may have to buy more lumber to shore it up.
How does this compare to kits I could buy? If it was going to cost a lot more per square foot how would I rationalize not doing it the easy way? The cheapest Harbor Freight carport tent thing is $99 for 10' x 20'. I'll call that $100/200 sq feet = $0.50 per square foot. That's cheap.
The Shelter Logic version that used to come in different sizes is $349.99. It's only available in 10'x20' right now, January 2021. But from the reviews I see they used to make them big enough for an RV. The reviews complain that the covers only last a year. Anyway, ignoring that it's too small for Ally Mo, the price per square foot is $1.75/ square f
Alternative to White Schedule 40 PVC:
|Schedule 80 PVC Pipe, UV Resistant
What's a Purlin?Purlins are the part of the roof that runs perpendicular to the rafters. You don't get them in houses that much because they put sheathing right on top of the rafters instead. But my house has purlins. It's 2x4s I screwed across the rafters and then I attached my metal roof to them. For my lean-to the plastic pipe hoops will be like joists or rafters and this channel will be where I attach the plastic, so that makes it a purlin. My shed doesn't even have rafters, it only has purlins. They're 30' long steel members with a C shape profile. They attach right to the end walls and the corrugated steel goes on top. The industrial metal is actually a structural component, not just a cladding. Even the polyethylene in this project has some structural importance. It's like the paper on a balsa wood model airplane.
Now that I have everything built and tested I may be able to get away with 16' wide plastic next time and it would be $88 instead of $96. Seems like it's worth $8 to have plenty of slack though.
Placing End Posts
My Most Valuable Skill
How Flimsy Is This?
Full Scale Planning
40° Hoop Holes
I made a few test holes and considered leaving part of the board at the bottom of the hole as a stop. I decided against this and just drilled all the holes clean through.
I made a special trip to Home Depot to get some alternatives for making the holes. I settled on a hole saw. They were out of the one I wanted and I had to buy a lot of extra stuff, but in hindsight I bought the wrong extra stuff and I had regrets.
20° Hoop Holes
Check Hoop Holes
Put up Tie Beam
Double the Cap Beam
Screw on 20° Drilled Cap
Prepare the Pipes
Paint the Post Side/Wire Channel
Purlin It All Together
|Packrats carried my avatar into the belly of Ally Mo. It was on a corrugated plastic sign I had made at Vistaprint that said "Longleaf Conservation Area"
|This is a detail of the drain from the roll-down window
|Really high quality screws in this trailer. I just unscrewed them! Heads intact.
|Detail from removing the belly pan from Ally Min, 1951 Spartan.
|Make the holes big enough and spaced properly for your cable ties
|I added a second cable tie over the first. There was still room in the hole!