Tiny House on Wheels Project

(Ajay) #21

In my last post I had said if things went well I’d be living in my tiny house by mid-end August. It is now nearing end of September and I am preparing to move in. So things did not go entirely to plan. A very unfortunate accident and I am once again dealing with Post Concussion Syndrome. Having moved out of my apartment I was crashing with family members until the house could be finished. So I forced myself to push through the constant headache, nausea, dizziness and complete inability to think clearly to get it done. There was much cursing, throwing of things in frustration and admittedly some tears. To those who helped during this period, it is appreciated more than my exhausted self can express…thank you… @Drew_Spriggs, @Mick_Morrison, @zach.forrester, the Mens Shed and more. Tiny McHouseface is now done (mostly) to the point of being livable and was moved yesterday to it’s new home. I am too exhausted to feel relieved but I am sure that will come.

Anyway, on to the Build Log!

I had previously lined my shower with corrugated but really didn’t like the colour. So I replaced it to match the outside of the house. And used some leftover weatherboard to line the bottom of the bath.
I had to figure out a way to seal the holes for the tap and shower head outlets. I decided on some well sealed timber blocks. @Svenska cut the corrugated pattern on the back of the blocks with the CNC. I then drilled holes in the center for the tap spindles. The tap flanges then seal against the flat surface of the timber.
New photo by A D

For the shower curtain rod I tried unsuccessfully to bend some stainless pipe myself so in the end paid someone $40 cash to make one for me. Still a lot cheaper than the $150 I was quoted for custom made shower rods elsewhere.
I am really happy with how the shower looks but will need to keep a close eye on it for waterproofing.

Many thanks to @Thermoelectric for completing the wiring. The house has 3 circuits: lighting, power and cooktop (portable induction). There is one main overhead light; one bathroom light; strip light between the rafters in the lounge area; strip light under the stairs and along the loft landing; and strip light under the kitchen shelf. A Sonoff pow is connected to monitor power usage.
I screwed up the wiring for the stairs as I was originally planning on having two way switches (one upstairs and one downstairs) control that light, but I hadn’t accounted for the double pole switches required in a movable dwelling. So I connected a sonoff switch to that light so it can be activated by wifi.

I built recessed shelving into one of the internal walls in what I dub my ‘reading/dining’ area.
A long shelf the length of the large window runs above the kitchen benchtop.
More shelving will be added to the bathroom. And the loft balustrade will consist of shelving also. You need plenty of storage in a tiny house!

Early in my build I had obtained some leftover vinyl loose lay floor planks from a build site. These were fairly easy to install. Just cut to size with a knife and lay them down, gluing the planks near the edges down. A friction backing keeps them in place. Really happy with how these turned out.

Compost toilet
The following section includes descriptions of bodily functions that may disturb some people. Viewer discretion is advised
Nearly all tiny houses have some form of composting or closed system toilet so that no black water connection is required. I researched many different commercially available models ranging anywhere from $1000 to over $3000 in price. And most of them are nothing more than a glorified bucket. The very expensive models have agitating systems and fans to stir and dry your poop and allow it to compost faster. But still just a bucket. So I decided to build my own.
Most of what I researched stated that to eliminate most smells you need to separate the liquids from the solids. This is accomplished with a urine diverter; ergonomically engineered for ladies to funnel the wee into a separate container. For blokes you just need good aim. Urine is sterile and mixed with water is a good fertilizer for gardens.
Poop goes into a bucket and is covered with organic material like wood shavings or leaves which covers the smell and allows the waste to start composting. When the bucket is full, empty it into another compost bin and add more cover material. Come back in 3-4 months and you have fully composted, bacteria free fertilizer aka “humanure”.
My compost toilet cost me about $50. We’ll see how well it functions. :smiley:

The rest of the work was all finishing details and preparing the house for travel:

  • Installing an electric breakaway unit on the trailer tongue which applies the trailer brakes in case of detachment from the tow vehicle.
  • Covering the PVC piping under the trailer with rubber matting to protect against rocks etc.
  • Wiring up all the exterior travel lights and installing reflectors
  • Getting the house weighed for registration
  • Skirting boards and architraves

Most of the finishing work leaves a lot to be desired but it was the best I could do in my dazed state. There is still a lot to do but they are things I can work on slowly.
Install a handrail for the stairs. A flip up dining table. Balustrade/shelves for the loft. Bathroom door. Kitchen lights. Fix a lot of mistakes.

We got dashcam footage of the house being moved. I will post that later (when it finally uploads). And I will do another build log post after a month or so of living in the tiny house :slight_smile: