A Shop for Dan

Blog series by Dan Lyke consisting of 14 parts so far

Part 1: The state of what is

07-31-2009 11:02 PM by Dan Lyke | 1 comment »

We live in a little 768 square foot cottage on a little lot on the southern edge of Sonoma county, of wine country fame, in a cute little town called Petaluma. If you’ve seen Basic Instinct, or Peggy Sue Got Married, or, especially, American Graffiti, or any number of other films, you’ve caught a glimpse of the community we call home. My shop currently fits in the garage of that house (not counted in that 768 square feet), a space it also shares with laundry. The garage was des...

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Part 2: Thinking about living roofs

07-31-2009 11:09 PM by Dan Lyke | 2 comments »

I’m still looking for reasonable numbers on roof loads for a living roof. I’ve run across people claiming as little as 7 lbs per square foot per inch of soil, and living roofs in as little as 4” of soil, and numbers as high as 140PSF. The online calculators and charts for joist calculations (I’m treating this like a floor because a living roof wants to be a fairly flat roof) I’m finding go to a max of 100PSF live load and 20PSF dead load. I’m finding ca...

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Part 3: Musings on foundations

08-01-2009 06:42 AM by Dan Lyke | 1 comment »

Okay, the Tuff Shed folks left us thinking that all we needed to do was provide a couple of level pier blocks. Reading through stuff on building foundations to codes leaves me wondering a bit on that, I believe that we’d need to build a foundation at least 12” deep and 12” wide with reinforcement steel, assuming we’re on fairly firm soil, soil bearing strength of 1000 pounds/square foot or so. So I’m pretty sure that the Tuff Shed sales pitch is slightly misleadi...

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Part 4: Engineering a wall

08-15-2009 05:48 PM by Dan Lyke | 0 comments »

Any wall within 5 feet of a property line needs to be 1 hour rated. With a living roof, each end of the rafter will be supporting a thousand lbs. Furthermore, I live in earthquake country. Building a wall isn’t a trivial matter of slapping up some 2×4s and calling it done. I’ve looked around for information on AAC and SIPs and those foam concrete forms, and even asked some people about information on them, and it sure seems like we’re coming back to stick-built for p...

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Part 5: I can dig it!

09-25-2011 11:59 PM by Dan Lyke | 2 comments »

About two months ago, with engineering stats in hand, I decided to jump the permitting process and start digging. That weekend I jumped on a shovel to get it into the hard ground, slipped, toppled over, and drove the handle of a wheelbarrow into my rib, resulting in an emergency room visit. So, it’s been almost two months. In that time I’ve got the rest of the engineering packet together, and this weekend I decided to see if my rib had healed up enough to finish the diggi...

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Part 6: Foundation Poured!

10-31-2011 07:45 PM by Dan Lyke | 3 comments »

Haven’t posted here for a while, but things are starting to come together. In August, I started digging out the foundation for my shop. Although the dirt underneath the slab that I cut out was actually quite workable, the clay underneath the lawn portion of my potential shop was rock hard, and while jumping on a shovel I managed to slip and topple into a wheelbarrow handle, resulting in a broken rib and an emergency room visit. Word to the wise: Should you find yourself with a bro...

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Part 7: And the walls, go tumblin' up!

12-02-2011 02:22 AM by Dan Lyke | 5 comments »

My Dad came out to visit for two weeks, and we kicked it pretty hard. We assembled the walls, and with some help from my friend Alan got ‘em up. We got the sheathing on, and after a mis-communication with the truss guys got the trusses up, and the roof sheathing on: And then I took a break for Thanksgiving vacation. Got the framing inspection this week, had to double-up with galvanized nails for the sheathing on the sills (because the sills are treated), so that inspection is ...

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Part 8: Feels like the home stretch!

12-30-2011 06:09 AM by Dan Lyke | 3 comments »

It’s been 28 days since I last updated here. It feels like the home stretch, but I know it’s not yet. However, I did get enough materials out of the driveway today that we should be able to park there tomorrow! Since the last update, we have: Put the firebreak sheetrock on the outside of the sheathing, and wrapped the building. Got most of the siding on. Hung the preliminary door. Had the rough electrical inspected. Got help from some houseguests, that included get...

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Part 9: I have the power!

01-11-2012 03:51 AM by Dan Lyke | 1 comment »

Just gotta post this! My shop, with the lights on powered by the breakers through the panels: And the trench which contains the conduit and #4 wire that feeds it: Electrical and drywall inspections, and the installation of the heat pump, tomorrow.

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Part 10: Starting to move in!

01-16-2012 08:53 PM by Dan Lyke | 4 comments »

Back on January 2nd, Jake came over to help me run wallboard screws. Then he got bored with wallboard screws and ran a few lag screws. Then he got bored with that and played with other stuff, but I think he had fun and I made some progress: Then I dug the electrical trench and ran #4 wire from the house panel,encased in schedule 80 PVC conduit, to the shop panel. It was atremendously cool feeling to flick the switch and see the shop comealive. > Then my Dad came to visit, and w...

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Part 11: Lifting the soil

05-30-2012 04:50 PM by Dan Lyke | 6 comments »

It’s been a while since my last update here, but work hasn’t stopped that much. I did get employed, which sucks, but you know, cash flow and all that. Anyway, I was kinda stalled out so I called in a “final” inspection on my two permits on the shop, got sign-off on the electrical, and 3 things left on the main permit: They wanted to see the eaves painted, a landing for the door, and the soil on the roof. I need all those things done anyway, but getting a good clean ...

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Part 12: We have plants!

06-06-2012 05:57 PM by Dan Lyke | 12 comments »

And, of course, I confused cubic feet with square feet and half-ordered my dirt, but 6 tons of dirt later, We slapped some strawberry plants we had from moving a few other things around the yard up on the roof, and then Yesterday afternoon I went and bought a couple of sedums and strawberries and put ‘em in up there: Another coat of paint on the eaves and I’ve done everything necessary for my final inspection, then I need to run some hose up there for drip irrigation and...

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Part 13: Final inspection

08-30-2012 04:16 PM by Dan Lyke | 25 comments »

Just to complete the series: Workshop passed final inspection back at the beginning of August. Big ol’ project off my plate, awesome resources to now do cool kickass stuff with. A little over a year since I first broke ground, and then broke my rib and had to take time off. So with the injury and time to recover I didn’t really get started in earnest ‘til the end of September last year. But I can take a deep breath and say “there, that’s done”, and start...

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Part 14: Harvesting the roof

09-13-2014 04:24 PM by Dan Lyke | 48 comments »

Been a while since we’ve done a workshop update. The roof has been keeping us in strawberries and basil all summer, and is starting to deliver on other herbs.

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