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Hey everyone, I've been working on building my first ice shack for this year's ice season. I've gotten a lot of awesome ideas from some of the other guys posting on here and wanted to return the favor for those who might be building one as well. Mine isn't going to be as nice as some of the others I've seen on here but hopefully it helps get your wheels turning on ideas for your own. Also, this build is on going and i'd love any feedback on ideas for the house moving forward. I had a lot of help so far and have many favors that i need to re-pay. Pre - Build - Prior to starting the build i had mocked everything up in google sketch up. It worked really well to get window placement measurements and a rough idea of the interior layout. Kicker here was my subscription expired prior to starting the build so I only had a few of the drawings the i had exported as PDF's. The most helpful thing i did is printing out a layout of other ice houses on the market and using some ideas from the amazing builds on here to decide on the layout of the floor. During the google sketchup phase i also priced out materials and kept a spreadsheet going of all of the estimated costs. I figured for about $4k i could have a rolling enclosed chasis and from there the interior cost would be variable depending on finishes. The interior work is going to be done in phases that i mapped out so i don't drain my bank account all at once. Build - Phase 1 - Rolling Chasis My goal for the first phase is to get a rolling enclosed chassis. I purchased the 8x17' with a 4' "V" frame online from an auction at a decent price. it's 2x4 tubing all the way around with a mix of angle iron and tube cross members. It was finished from the factory with Herculiner and cam with trailer brakes installed. The guy that i bought it from said that it is the one that Ice Castle uses but who really knows. I used 5/8" treated for the flooring. I wanted to use 3/4" but due to the hurricanes our local Menards was (and still is) out of stock. it's weird to think we're effected by the storms all the way up here in MN. Another angle After I finished the flooring i contemplated how to insulate the floor. A lot of people on this (and other forums) sandwich 1.5" 250 expanded foam board between plywood. Plywood is heavy and I wanted to save a little weight so i opted for closed cell spray foam insulation. A buddies cousin does it for a living so I was able to get a reasonable price. It turned out really nice. With the thinner plywood on the floor it really stiffened it up and apparently rodents don't like it. The beams on the trailer were thick enough and we were able to get about 1.5-2" average foam depth and still have plenty of clearance between the foam and the ice to prevent it from freezing down. Because of the clearance i'm skipping a sheath on the bottom, some people recommend them but the added weight wasn't worth it to me. Once the spray foaming was done we started framing the walls. For this I used 2x3's purchased at Menards. I picked through their entire pile and was able to salvage around 80 good ones. It took forever. In the future a guy might rip down 2x4's or 2x6's to save some time. The walls are framed so that the inside ceiling will be at 7'. If you have a simple knowledge of framing up a house you should be good to go. I opted for 16" on center for the stud spread. This is the part that using the google sketchup drawings really helped. We framed in the windows as we went to save us a step and having to cut the studs with a sawsall. Measure twice and cut once, I realized after I built both the side walls that i incorrectly measured the wall and had to go back and move all the Studs lol not ideal but that's what happens at midnight after a few BL smoothies. We mocked up all the walls and tack'ed them to the trailer in a few spots with screws to make sure everything fit properly. Ended up that there were a few adjustments needing to be made that we were able to catch before final assembly relatively easily. A picture from my future fishing spot. At this point we were pretty certain that the structural support pole would perfectly fit in the middle After another 12 Menards runs we pulled the trailer to the middle of the shop and started leveling and squaring the walls in their final resting place. We took the time to level the trailer on the floor with shims so we could use a level to square everything. With the bent lumber its more of an art than a science but we were able to get it setup just right. For the roof I used 1/2" green treated. I realized after i purchased it that it was probably over kill but didn't want to run back to Menards again. I ran a perimeter of 2x4's around the top of the wall frame stood up and screwed the truss 2x4 to that. There is no pitch to the roof. My buddy and i had a long debate about whether or not it will sag, he thinks it will but we will see. A picture of the finished framing job. For the wheel wells a guy would want to finish the exterior of the large part before final placement. It would be nearly impossible to sneak the diamond plate behind the wheel with the trailer i have. Another closer picture attempting to get the interior. I currently have the DL-3 steel siding ordered from Metal Sales it looks similar to the siding used for ice castles. If you want a look other than the "Pro Rib" you can purchase at Menards I would recommend looking around. There are a ton of different styles available that are much more interesting. Link to the siding page is Here: http://www.metalsales.us.com/agricultural/products/metal-panel/dl-3-panel#.WdKBPluPKC I'm still trying to decide wheather or not to spray foam the interior walls. Let me know what you would recommend! As i progress the project i'll try and add more photos but this is all i have for now.
I have a 6.5x14 Ultra Shack. I'm guessing was built early 2000s. Had to tear apart interior walls due to moisture build up. Steel frame, with aluminum 1.5x1.5 or 1"x1" tube studs. Previously insulated with pink board foam between studs, with a thin quarter inch thick foam pad glued to the studs, then paneling glued over the top of it all. I'm thinking the issue was no vapor barrier? I have it all torn apart down to the studs. Wondering how I should finish it, use a vapor barrier such as poly? Or no vapor barrier? Any help is appreciated! Thanks! -Nate