Treehouse Update #4

A couple of works trips for Sarah sent me to my parents for some free babysitting while I worked on the treehouse last week.  So after a few days, I now have a house in a tree.  If there’s anything I learned while working at Treehouse Workshop it is that you should do everything you can on the ground, and then lift the house into the tree in panels.  Way easier and more efficient than climbing up and down every time you drop your tape measure or need to make a cut.

So with the help of my 6’8″ friend Bill and my dad, the three of us shoved, grunted and hefted the eight wall sections up into the tree.  Then it was just a matter of kicking the walls onto my layout lines, and screwing the screws back into their holes.   And wah-la, there is something that looks like a treehouse up in the branches, which is very exciting.

I had enough time to screw the rafters in, but I’ll finish putting in the outlookers and fascia later when I go back to skip sheet and shake the roof.  This is easier said than done of course, as I’ll have to rig up some sort of safety line dangling from the skinny treetops.  After that’s done, I’ll install some fir flooring I’ve got, cutting out for the sunken hidey-hole and hinging the floor there.  Then to set the windows and door and make a little loft (or not).  I’m tempted to put in a tiny little cupola with a weather vane or finial for looks, so I’ll see what I can find on ebay.  I’ll also be on the lookout for an antique wheel-style pulley, so the kiddos can haul things up and down.  We’re not going to cover the interior walls, so you’ll see the skip sheeting and the back of the shingles/siding.  There’s still some debate on whether to run a wire out there so there can be lights.  We’ll see.

Wish me luck that I don’t break my neck!

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Treehouse Update

The treehouse saga continues.

Since my last update:

  • Built a door jamb for a door an old landlord had thrown out on the curb.
  • Bought the windows from the ReStore in Ballard.
  • Built a gate from leftover stair material, and scrap I had.  My parents have a thing for loons, so Sarah had a great idea to carve a pair on them.  I added two babies to represent Josie and my nephew Lucian on the mama’s back.  Then I painted and epoxied it.
  • Sarah, Dad and I moved cedar logs that my parents had cut down last winter.  This sounds simple, but when all you have is a come-along, a lot of rope and wire cable, a peavey, a crowbar, log rollers, and stubborn determination, it takes awhile.  I have a new respect for what the Egyptians were able to accomplish.  With the logs staged in the driveway, they were now within easy reach of my friend’s portable sawmill.

With Sarah away on work this last week, I had another long weekend at the folks’ place working on the treehouse.  On Saturday my friend, Spencer West, come by with his Woodmizer top mill up the cedar logs.  Spencer turned logs into beautiful lumber, my heart quickened as I began making up projects on the fly once the treehouse lumber order was met, barking out dimensions for a dining room table, window trim benches, and a gate.  Too much wood is a carpenter’s wet dream come true – and seriously, it poured on us that afternoon.

With the lumber now stacked and stickered, there is nothing holding me back from building the treehouse but time.  I framed a couple walls, decked the platform, and even got in a railing by the end of the weekend.  Suddenly it’s starting to look and feel like the drawings I’ve been doodling for the last few months.

This has to be the smallest deck I’ve ever done.

I’ve added a Flickr album to the right if you’d like to watch the evolution of this project.