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Crow Hunter

question on ceiling insulation

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My deer shack is a rustic log cabin. I heat it with a wood stove; currently there is no insulation in the ceiling, it is just roll roofing over plywood. The ceiling joists are approx 4" logs, so they are obviously not perfectly straight. The gaps between the joists is approx. 20". I would like to put some insulation up there to keep the cabin warmer. My problem is that faced batt insulation comes in 15 and 23 inch widths, I doubt the 23" would work with the 20" gaps? The other thing is that since we eat and sleep in there, I don't want fiberglass filaments from the insulation drifting around all the time. Would just stapling reflectix to the joists (creating a dead air space between the reflectix and roof) accomplish anything? Any other ideas? It is a fairly steep roof, the peak is approx 16 feet. Any input would be appreciated. CH

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Blow some in.You say the ceiling is ply& rolled roofing?? is that roof or ceiling??

Ya could try styrofoam in 1 inch sheets to the joists then blow some in.

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I should have said that there is no ceiling; just the roof, so I lose a lot of heat through the roof with zero insulation. CH

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Get some 1-1&1/2 inch 4x8 styrofoam sheets lay them on top of your pole joists,it will lighten the place up & provide some insulation if ya want more insulation just roll some batts over the styro.Uneven or not it will work.And the insulation on top isnt heavy enough to have to get the 4x8 styro to lap on pole joists,maybe a washered head nail here & there to fasten the styro.

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Are you willing to lose the looks of the exposed log and ceiling? Sounds like it. You can cut the width of the fiberglass down to compression fit. I'd then use 2x2s on 16" centers perpendicular to the logs to even out the ceiling. Shim and notch the 2x2s to get it even closer. Exposed foam is a building violation. I know its just a cabin but if you lease the land it could come back at you. Not too long ago 7/16 OSB was ridiculously cheap. Finish off the ceiling in that. Before that you could fill in between the 2x2 with foam, don't forget the vapor barrier.

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Wood is awfully cheap heat and you probably really don't use it all that much. At the deer shack I used to go to the problem was that the heat would stratify and the guy in the top bunk would roast and the guy on the bottom would freeze. We only had 12 volt battery power but added a couple of fans for trucks and that made a big difference.

We actually set up a 12 volt RV pump, a 15 gallon barrel and a turkey cooker and had hot water for showers, dishes, and enough for a couple of light bulbs as well. A car radio on a timer and we were set for 3 days with 12 deep cycle batteries.

While the foam would work I would be awfully afraid of what would happen if there was a fire.

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Thanks for all the replies, much appreciated. I am mainly concerned when it gets really cold, like that opening morning a few years ago when it was 13 below where I was hunting. I would also like the shack to hold heat a little better overnight, the wood stove is not that large and I don't make it through a whole night with the fire going. CH

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Then consider putting in a small propane furnace. I think you can get them for a couple hundred and you solve the problem. You also gain a lot of room inside because the stove, woodpile and other stuff are gone.

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Tom, I actually replaced a propane heater with the wood stove. The reasons were, 20 mile round trip to get my 100 lb propane tank filled; absurd pricing on propane in the area (2 years ago now, I bet it is a lot higher now). A bigger tank won't work because a propane delivery truck could not get into my cabin area. Plus, it is just not deer camp to me without the smell of wood smoke... smile

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We have a small log cabin and our builder made it with 1/4" t@g pine on top of the log joists with 2 layers of 1 1/2" styro ins. topped off by sheathing and a steel roof. You can't go that way now but you should be able to piece in 1 1/2" styro between the logs and then finish it off with some wood of some sort. It will cover part of the logs and it would be a tedious job to get it to fit right but it would look good. Sounds like a good deer camp shack.

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Crow Hunter, if you don't have a fan in it, you might want to consider a cheap little couple computer fans. They run on not much 12v power, and would keep that hot air up top circulating down to the area below. And lightweight too smile

Have fun!

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