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Complete Plans for 12 Sheds, including:
Garden Outbuilding
Storage Lean-to
Woodland Cottage
Hobby Studio
Lawn Tractor Barn
by Philip Schmidt
Creative Publishing
Creative Publishing
Copyright 2008
Creative Publishing international, Inc.
400 First Avenue North
SUite 300
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55401
All lights reserved
Printed at R.R. Donnelley
Li brary of Congress Cataloging-in-publication Data
Schmidt, Philip.
The complete guide to contemporary sheds: complete plans for 12 sheds,
including playhouse, garden outbuilding, storage lean-to, lawn tractor barn,
hobby studio, woodland cottage / by Philip Schmidt.
p. cm. -- (Complete guide)
At head of title: Branded by Black & Decker
Summary: "Provides practical information for planning and building sheds
of ali types" --Provided by publisher.
Includes index.
ISBN-13: 978-1-58923-335-5 (soft cover)
ISBN-l0: 1-58923-335-2 (soft cover)
1. Sheds--Design and construction--Amateurs' manuals. 2. Toolsheds--
Design and construction--Amateurs' manuals. 3. Outbuildings--Design and
construction--Amateurs' manuals. I. Black & Decker Corporation (Towson,
Md.) II. Titl e. III. Title: Branded by Black & Decker. IV. Series.
The Complete Guide to Contemporary Sheds
PreSident/CEO: Ken Fund
Vice President for Sales & Marketing: Peter Ackroyd
Home Improvement Group
Publisher: Bryan Trandem
Managing Editor: Tracy Stanley
Senior Editor: Mark Johanson
Editor: Jennifer Gehlhar
Creative Director: Michele Lanci-Altomare
Senior Design Manager: Brad Springer
Design Managers: Jon Simpson, Mary Rohl
Lead Photographer: Steve Galvin
Photo Coordinator: Joanne Wawra
Shop Manager: Bryan MCLain
Shop Assistant: Cesar Fernandez Rodriguez
Production Managers: Linda HailS, Laura Hokkanen
Author: Philip Schmidt
Page Layout Artist: Danlelle Smith
Photographers: Peter Caley, Andrea Rugg, Joel Schnell
Shop Help: Dan Anderson, Taml Helmer, John Webb,
Glenn Austin, Scott Boyd, Lyle Ferguson, David Hartley,
Russ Reininger, Syd Thomas, Kevin Weber
Technical Review: Arien Cartrette
Created by: The Edi tors of Creative Publishing international, Inc., in cooperation with Black & Decker.
Black & e c k e ~ is a trademark of The Black & Decker Corporation and is used under license.
For safety, use caution, care, and good judgment when following the procedures described in this book. The Publisher
and Black & Decker cannot assume responsibility for any damage to property or injury to persons as a result of misuse
of the information provided.
The techniques shown In this book are general techniques for various applications. In some Instances, additional
techniques not shown in this book may be required. Always follow manufacturers' instructions included with products,
since deviating from the directions may void warranties. The projects in this book vary widely as to skill levels required:
some may not be appropriate for al l dO-It-yourselfers, and some may require professional help.
Consult your local Buildi ng Department for information on building permits, codes and other laws as they apply to
your project.
The Complete Guide to
Contemporary Sheds
Introduction . . . . . .. ... . . . . . .. . . .. ..... .. 4
Essential Outbuildings . ................. . . 6
Building Basics . ........... . ... ... .. . ... 20
Choosing a Site for Your Shed . . .. . . .. . . .. . . .. . . .. . . . . .. 22
Worki ng with Construction Drawings. . . .. 24
Anatomy of a Shed. .. .. 26
Lumber & Hardware. . . .. 27
Building Foundations . . .... . . . . . . . .. . . 28
Framing the Structure . . . .. 40
Siding & Trim ................ .. ......... . ........... 62
Doors & Windows .. .. . .. . .. . . . . . .. . . .. . .. . . . .. . . . . .. 70
Ramps, Steps & Decks ... . ..... . . ... . ..... . ......... . 74
Shed projects . . ..... . . ... . . ... . . . .. . .. . 84
Clerestory Studio . .. .. . 86
Sunlight Garden Shed . . . 100
Lean-to Tool Bin ... .. . .. . . .. .. 114
Convenience Shed . .. . 124
Gambrel Garage. . .. . . .. .... . . .. . . . . . 138
Simple Storage Shed . . . ....... 154
Gothic Playhouse .. .. . .. . .. . . ... . .. . . .. . ... . . .. . . . . . 166
Timber-frame Shed . .. . .. . .. . . . . . . .. . . .. . . . . . . .. . . . . . 180
Service Shed ................. .. ......... .. ......... 192
Metal & Wood Kit Sheds . . .. .. .... . 202
Shed with Fi rewood Bi n .............. .. .. .. ... 220
Additional Shed Plans . ..... . , . . .. . .. ... 230
Resources & Credits ....... . ... ... ..... 236
Index .. . ............................ 238
Clerestory Studio . .. .. .. . 86 Sunl ight Garden Shed . . . . 100
Lean-to Tool Bin .... .. ... 114 Convenience Shed ..... .. 124
Gambrel Garage .. .. .. . . . 138 Simple St orage Shed . .. .. 154
Timber-frame Shed . .. .. .. 180
Service Shed . ....... . ... 192 Metal & wood Kit Sheds . .. . 202
he contemporary backyard shed is much more than a place to park the lawnrnmver. Sheds are st ill grea t for
storage, of course, but many homeowners are flnding added va lue in their sheds' less tangible qual it ies-
privacy, personal expression, a connection to t he outdoors. Perhaps mos t of all , people like the separation from
the main house. A shed is the perfect place to forget you r duti es or your day job and spend a fe w hours absorbed
in a hobby. For mclllY, it's an open invi tation to come out and play in the dirt.
Keepi ng in mind that every s hed ca n have a nmge of uses, the custom buildings in thi s book are designed
to be versatil e, practi cal, and adaptabl e. They' re a lso designed for good looks. In terms of prope rty val ue, a shed
can be either an asset or a li abi lity. Everyone ca n pi cture the fa mili ar di lapidated t in shed \,vith doors hanging by
one wheel and propped shut with conc re te blocks . T hi s is a worl d apart fro m a handsome building with solid
proportions and fitting a rchi tectural details . A well -built shed ca n evoke t he cha racter of a miniature house or
a small, private cabin or playhouse. A shed can be an appealing outdoor retreat and a solid compleme nt to yo ur
home's landscape.
You can acquire a DI Y shed in one of t\VO ways: bui ld it from sc ratc h or buy a kit shed made for easy
assembly. Thi s book covers both opt ions. Eac h of the 10 custom shed projects includes a compl ete set of
constructi on drawings, a detailed materials list, a nd step-by-step inst ruct ions and photos for building the shed
from the ground up. For those who prefer the easy-assembly route, there's a full discussion of c hoosing a ki t shed,
plus two projects shm'ving the bas ic steps for asse mbling popular kit buildings .
If you don't have a lot of experie nce wit h carpentry, don't worry- the Bui lding Bas ics section of the book
wa lks you t hrough the entire construct ion process . It wi ll a lso help you c hoose the right foundation for your s hed
and give you t he knowledge to make custom subst itu tions to t he projects as shown. Many shed kits involve a fair
amount of freehand \vork, as \ve ll , so you're covered even if your kit comes wit hout roofing or a floor.
One of t he best aspects of building a shed is that it does n't di srupt da ily life in your home. This makes the
project infinitely more pleas urable than, say, a complete kitchen remode l. So take your time, enjoy t he process , und
look forward to years of getting away from it all. You' ll find that getting even a fe\-\' yards away is something special.
sk <1 dozen people what they would do with a
bas ic shed in the ir backyard and you're bound to
hear as many di fferent answers. Some would certai nly
usc the outbu ilding for storage- yard and garden
supplies, play equ ipment, bicycles, clll d ot her spi ll over
items fro m the garage. Others would claim the shed
for more specific pursuits: raising exot ic flowers,
turning pottery, wa tchi ng sports on a big-screen TV.
Some may eve n imagine the shed as a fu ll y equipped
home office Of, going in the opposite direct ion, a
simple, quiet retreat for reading and medi tat ion.
Regardless of the answers you get, one note \vou ld
ring true: Eac h person could picture himse lf in t hat
sa me buil ding, doing his own thing and Il lling the
space with personal stuff. That's v,fhat sheds are all
about. Like a house, a good shed offers more t han
shelter and square footage; it's a lso an opportuni ty for
self-express ion . Perhaps best of a ll , a shed offers t he
addit ional advantage of privacy. You don't have to c lean
it up for guests or worry about tracking mud on the
carpet. And if you set it up just right, you v.,ron't even
hear the doorbell ringing in t he house ("Sorry, I must
have been out in my works hop .... ").
The foll owing pages feat ure backyard sheds of
all descri ptions a nd for any number of personal uses.
See if you can pi cture yourself in some of the m. Then
try to identify features that make those s heds special
to you. Chances arc, you can apply those same ideas
when bu il ding your own backyard getaway.
Whether it's perched at the water's edge or tucked away
in the trees, a well -appointed outbUilding can feel a lot like a
vacation home.
Believe it or not, this graciously ornamented shed is easily built from a panelized kit special details like the dormer appear to be
the work of a highly skilled carpenter but can actually be assembled by the average do-it-yourselfer.
Door placement impacts a shed's appearance and Its
interior layout This centralized door flanked wi th windows
transforms an ordinary shed into a quaint cottage.
No need to get fancy. This humble shed has plenty of charm
and blends perfectly With its surroundings.
Designed to suit the setting, this
shed's rustic materials and antique
windows add an air of timelessness and
easy country living.
Garden folly, playhouse, or work of art?
Any of those would be an accurate
description. And you can bet the owners
had fun building this one.
EsseHlialOulhui ldillgs 9
While kit sheds are based on efficient,
modern building concepts, you can still
find them in traditional styles With nice,
custom details, such as this metal roof.
Shed kit seliers offer a range of accessories and details for adding a custom touch to your shed, Including practical add-ons like
window flower boxes and decorative trim.
Not everyone wants a large, freestanding building In
the backyard. Plenty of kit sheds are designed for discreet
placement against a house wall or a tall fence.
A deep roof overhang adds character
but also shelters windows from hot
midday sun- an important consideration
for working sheds.
Integrating a shed into a patio plan can help define the
space, block unwanted views, and provide shade and handy
storage for patio items.
EsseHlialOulhuildillgs 11
A traditional saltbox shed may
look complicated but is nothing more
than a simple gabled building with a
shed-style addition.
This handsome shed demonstrates how a little trim and some custom details, such as window boxes, shutters, a dutch door,
and a chimney, can turn a basic gable structure into something extraordinary
In this abundant garden setting,
two gambrel-roofed buildings
evoke the farming traditions of the
American landscape.
Knotty pine paneling and roof sheathing
were given a diluted whitewash to create a
rustic yet elegant backdrop for this inviting
country shed interior.
EsseHlialOulhui ldillgs 13
The most beloved sheds tend to fill
up over time, reflecting the passions and
philosophies of their owners.
Cedar shingles and open eaves create a seaside-cottage feeling in this shed, even in the middle of a wooded lot.
The tranquil and graceful character of ASian garden structures has inspired countless western designers.
EsseHlialOulhuildillgs 15
On the outside, this artist's retreat displays the proud utility
of classic New England architecture (left), while the lovingly
decorated interior (this page) bears the personal mark of
its owners. With the finished ceiling, fireplace, and double-hung
windows, this furnished shed functions as a guest house.
EsseHlialOulhui ldillgs 17
Because sheds are relatively small,
materials upgrades, such as cedar
shingles instead of asphalt roofing or
plywood siding, can stili be affordable.
used as a sun room in cooler weather, this shed greatly enhances the function and beauty of this outdoor gathering place.
Greenhouses have inspired many versatile shed designs. Windows on the roof bring in plentiful light for growing.
EsseHlialOulhuildillgs 19
Building Basics
lmost everything you've ever \\'anted to kno"v about
building a shed is in this section. Each element
of the construc tion project is covered in detail- from
selecting a site to buil ding the foundation to framing
t he Aoor, \Ved is, and roof. You' ll also learn <Jbout buying
lumber <:I nd hard\vare. After your shed is built, return to
this section for help with adding a ramp, deck, or ste ps .
Because the vari olls elements are presented a la
carte, you can pick and choose t he designs and materi als
you like best. For the foundat ion, it makes sense to
choose a type based on the shed's location. Several
drawings in this book call for a \vooden slUd foundation
(which is the easiest to bui ld), but a concrete bloc k
foundation may be a better choice for a sloping site.
Be Slife to have your project plans approved by the
local building department before starting construction.
This is especially important if you're making substit utions
to the plans featured in t he Shed Projects section.
In This Chapter:
Choosing a Site for Your Shed
Working with Construction Drawings
Anatomy of a Shed
Lumber & Hardware
Building Foundations
Framing the Structure
Siding & Trim
Doors & Windows
Ramps, Steps & Decks
I Choosing a Site for Your Shed
he first step in choosi ng a site for your building
doesn't take place in you r backya rd but at the
local building and zoning de partments. By visiting the
department s, or making calls, you should determine
a few things abollt your project before making any
dennite plans. iVlost importantly, find Ollt \.vhether
your proposed building will be a llowed by zoning
regulations and what speci fi c restri ctions appl y to your
situation. Zoning laws govern such matters as the size
and he ight of the bUilding and the percentage of your
property it occupies, the building's location, Clnd it s
position rel ative to the hOllse, neighboring propert ies,
the street, etc.
From the building s ide of things, as k if yo u need
a permit to build your st ructure. [f so, you' ll have to
submit plan drawings (photocopied plans from this
book should suffice), as wcll as specifications for the
foundation and materia ls and esti mated cost. Once
your project is approved, you may need to buy a
permit to display on the building site, and you may be
required to show you r \-vork at scheduled inspections.
Because outbuildings are detached and
freestanding, codes typica ll y govern them loosely.
Many impose restrictions or require permits only on
st ructures larger than 100, or even 120, square feet.
Others drmv the line \,vith the type of founda tion
used. [n some areClS, buildings \vith concrete s lClb or
pier foundati ons are classifi ed as "perma ne nt" and
thus a re subj ect to a spec ifi c set of restri ctions (and
taxation, in some cases), while buildings that are
set on skids and can- in theory at least- be moved
are cons idered temporary or accessory and may be
exempt from the general building codes.
Once you get the green light from the local
authorities, you CCln tromp around you r yard vv ith
a tape measure and stake your claim for the new
building. Of course, you' ll have plenty of personal
and practical reasons for placing the building
in a particular area, but he re arc a few ge ne ral
cons iderations to keep in mind:
Soil & drainage: To e nsure that yo ur foundation
will last (whatever type it is), plant you r building on
sol id soil , in an ClreCl that vvon't coll ect \vater.
Access: For trucks, vv heelbarrovvs, kids, etc. Do
you want access in a ll seasons?
Utility lines : Contact loca l ordinances to find
out where the water, gas, septic, and e lectrical lines
run through yo ur property. Often, local ordinances
and utility compani es requi re that lines a re marked
before digging. This is an essential step not only
because of legalities , but also because you don't
\vant your building si tting over lines that Illay
need repair.
Setback requirements: Most zoning laws dictate
that all buildings, fences, e tc ., in a yard must be set
back a specifi c distance from the property line. T hi s
setback may range from 6" to 3 feet or more.
Neighbors: To prevent civil unrest, or even a fe\\'
"veeks of ignored greetings, talk to you r neighbors
about you r project.
View from the house: Do you want to admire
you r handi\,vork from the dinner tabl e, or would
you prefer that you r outbuilding blend in with t he
outdoors? A pl ayhouse in plai n view makes it easy to
check on the kids.
l n ~ s
I Siting for Sunlight
Like houses, sheds can benefit enormously from
natura l light. Bringing su nli ght into you r backya rd
ofnce, workshop, or garden house makes the i nterior
space brighter and warmer, a nd it's the best: thi ng fo r
combati ng CI boxy feel. To make the most of natura l
light, t he gene ral rule is to orient the buil di ng so its
long side (or the side wit h the most \,vindows) faces
sout h. Hmvever, be sure to consider t he sun's pos it ion
at all times of the year, as wel l as the shadO\,vs your
shed might cast on su rrou nding areas, suc h as a
garden or outdoor si tt ing a rea.
Each day the sun crosses the sky CIt a sl ightly different
angle, moving from it s high poi nt in summer to its low
point in \,vinter. Shadows change accordingly. In the
summer, shadows fo\l mv the east \vest axis and are very
short at midday. \A!inter shadows poi nt to t he northeast
and nort hwest a nd arc relat ively long at midday.
Generall y, the south side of a buil di ng is exposed to
sunlight throughout the year, whil e the north si de may be
shaded in fall, winter, and spring. Geographical locat ion
is <:I lso <:I factor: <:IS you move nort h from the equator, the
changes in the sun's p<:lt h become more extreme.
Shadows follow the east-west axis in the summer.
June 22
Mar/ Sept 22
\ ""
. ,
y. .. '

, .
, ..
L-o--.--.. , . ' I
Dec 22
, -----..
., ... ,..'" ..
. .. .. . ... .., .. I ........
The sun moves from its high point in summer to its low
pOint in winter. Shadows change accordingly.
evening :x:
Winter shadows point to the northeast and northwest
and are relatively long at midday.
BlIihii llg Basics 23
I Working with Construction Drawings
he projects in t hi s book include complete
construction drawings in t he style of arch itectural
blueprints. If you're not fa mili ar wi th reading plans,
don't worry; they're easy to use once YOLI know how
to look at the different views. Flipping back and forth
benveen t he plan drawings and the project's
photos \vill help you visua li ze the actua l structure.
Note: TIle drawings i-It this hooh are accurately
proportioned, but they are not sized to a specific scale.
Also, di1llensio'Hs specified in the drawings are given
in feet and inches (for exa1/lple, 6'-8"), the standard
jonllot for architectural plan.s. For your convenience, the
written instructions may give dimensions in so
you don't h.ave to make th.e conversion.
Wood shakes
_--- Roof hub
2 x 8 Hip rolter beyond
2 x 8 Intermediate rofter beyond
Eave detail
Floor beams
(2)2 x 8 x 8 Treated (enter
pier pad - shim to proper height
Concrete pier
12" Dio . poured (onuete
pier - extend below irostline
The building section is the most comprehensive drawing, giving you a side view of the structure sliced in half down the
middle. It shows both the framing and finish elements.
r - fJ ,..-
Elevations give you a direct, exterior view of the building from all sides. Drawings may include elevations for both the framing
and the exterior finishes.
= d i l ~ ~
Plan views are overhead views looking
straight down from above the structure.
Floor plans show the layout of the walls
or upright supports, with the top half of
the structure sliced off. There are also
foundation plans, roof framing plans, and
other plan views.
Detail drawings and templates
show a close-up of a specific area or
part of the structure. They typically show
a side or overhead view.
I Anatomy of a Shed
Shown as a c utaway, this shed ill ust rates many
of the s tanda rd building components and how
t hey fit toget her. It can also hel p you u nders ta nd
t he major co nst ruct ion st ages- each project
in thi s book incl udes a s pecific cons truct ion
seque nce, but mos t foll ow the standard stages in
some fo rm:
Roof shingles
] . Foundation- inc luding preparing t he site and
adding a dra inage bed;
2. Fr"ming- the floor is nrst , followed by the walls,
t hen the roof;
3. Roollng- adding sheathing, building paper, and
roofl ng material;
4. Exterior flni s hcs- inc luding siding, trim, and
doors a nd windows.
overhang rafter
Floor frame
Foundation skid
I Lumber & Hardware
umbe r types most commonl y used in outbuildings
are pine- or re lated softwoods- or cedar, which is
natura ll y rot- res istant and is less expensive t heln most
ot her rot- res istant "voods. For pine to be rot-res istant ,
it mllst be press ure-treated, typi call y wit h a chemi cal
mixture called CCA (C hromated Copper Arsenate).
Pressure- treated lu mber is cheaper than cedar, but it's
not as attractive, so you may want to usc it only in areas
where appearance is unimportant. Pl yvvood designated as
exterior-grade is made wi th layers of cedar or treated wood
and a special glue that makes it weather-resistant. For
the long fun, though, it's a good idea to cover any exposed
pl)'\,,'ood edges to prevent \vater intrusion.
Framing lumber- typicall y pine or pressure-t reated
pi ne----comes in a fe\\' different grades: Select Structural
(SEL STR), Construction (C O NST) or Standard
(STAND), and Utility (UTIL) For most appli cations,
Construct ion Grade No.2 offers the best balance
bet\veen quality and pri ce. Utili ty grade is a lower-cost
lumber suitabl e for blocking and simil ar uses but
should not be used for structural members, such as
studs and rafte rs . You can also buy "STUD" lumber:
construction-grade 2 x 4s cut at t he standard stud
le ngt h of 92%". Note: Treated lU1Itber stwuld be left
exposed for approxiJltately 6 'lIJ.onths before applying
finishes. Finishes will not adhere well to treated lumber
t1wt is still very green or wet. Lumber manufacturers liheLy
have recO'lltJllended for their product.
Board lumber, or fi ni sh lumber, is graded by
qua lity and appearance, with the main cri teria being
the number a nd size of knots present. "C lear" pine, for
exampl e , has no knots.
AJ llumber has a nomi nal dimension (what it's
ca ll ed) and an actual dimension (what it actually
measures). A chart on page 237 shO\,,,s the differences
For some common lumber sizes. Lumber that is greater
than 4" thi ck (nomi nall y) generally is referred to as
timber. Depending on its surface texture and type, a
ti mber may actually measu re to its nominal di mensions,
so check this out before buying. Ceda r lumber also
va ries in size, depending on its surface texture. S4S
(Surfaced-Four-Sides) lu mber is milled smooth on all
sides and follows the standard dimensioning, while boards
with one or more rough surfaces can be over 1,1; " thi cke r.
vVhen selecting hardware for your project, remember
one thing: All nails, screws, bolts, hinges, and anchors
that be exposed to weather or rest on concrete
or that come in contact wit h treated lumber must be
corrosion-resistant . The best all -around choice for nai ls
and screws is hot-dipped galvanized steel, recognizable
by its rough, dull -sil ver coat ing. Hot-dipped fasteners
generally hold up better than the smoother, electroplated
types, and they' re the recommended choice for
pressure-treated lumber. Alumi num and stainless steel are
other materials suitable for outdoor exposure; however,
alu minum fasteners corrode some types of treated lu mber.
vVh il e expensive, stainl ess steel is the best guaran tee
agai nst stai ning from fasteners on cedar and redwood.
Another type of hardware you' ll fi nd throughout
t hi s book is the metal anchor, or framing connector,
used to re inforce v,lood framing connec tions. All
of the a nchors call ed for in the plans a re Simpson
brand (see Resources), whi ch a re avail abl e
at most lumbe rya rds and home centers. If you can't
find vvhat you need on t he shel ves , look through one of
t he manufacturer's catal ogs or visi t the man ufact urer's
\vebsite. You can also order custom-made hangers.
Keep in mind that metal anchors are effecti ve only
if they arc insta lled correctly- always follow t he
manufacture r's insta ll ation instructions, and usc
exact ly the type and numbe r of fastener recommended.
Final ly, applying a finish to your project will help
protect the wood from rot , fading and di scoloration,
and insects. Pine or s imilar untreated lumber must
have a protecti ve finish if it's exposed to the elements,
but even cedar is susceptibl e to rot over time and will
turn gray if left bare. If you paint the wood, apply a
primer first- thi s helps the paint stic k and makes it last
longer. If you want to preserve the natu ral wood grain,
use a stain or clear nnish.
A combination of sheet stOCk, appearance-grade lumber,
and structural lumber is used in most sheds.
BlI i hiillg Basics 27
I Building Foundations
our shed's foundation provides a level, stab le
structure to bui ld upon and protects the bUi lding
fro m moisture a nd erosion. In this sect ion you' ll lea rn
how to buil d Rve of the most common types of shed
foundat ions. All but the concrete pier foundat ion are
"on- grade" designs, meani ng they are built on top of
t he ground and can be subject to rising and 100vcring
a few inches du ring seasona l freezing and t hawing
of the u nderlying soi l. This usual ly is n't a problem
s ince a shed is a small , freestand ing structure that's
not attac hed to other buildi ngs. Hov,lever, it ca n
adversely affect some inter ior Il nis hes (wall boa rd,
for exa mple).
When c hoosi ng a foundat ion type for
your shed, consider t he spec ific s ite a nd the
performance qua li ties of a ll sys tems in va rious
c li mates; t hen check with the loca l bui ld ing
I Wooden Skid Foundation
A skid foundation couldn't be Si mpler: t",/o or more treated
wood beams or landscape ti mbers (typically 4 X 4, 4 x 6,
or 6 X 6) set on a bed of gravel. The gravel provides a fiat,
stable surface that drains well to help keep the timbers dl)'.
Once the skids are set, the floor fmme is buil t on top of
them and is ml iled to the skjds to keep everythi ng in pl ace.
Building a skid Foundation is merely a matter of
prepari ng the gravel base, then cutt ing, sett ing, and
leveling the timbers. The timbers you use must be
ra ted for grou nd contact . It is customary, but purely
opt ional, to make angled cuts on the ends of t he
skids- these add a minor decorat ive touch and make it
easier to skid t he shed to a new location, if necessary.
Because a skid fou ndat ion sits on t he gro und, it is
subject to sl ight shifting due to frost in cold-wea ther
department to learn what's al lowed in your
area. Some foundations, such as concrete slabs,
may c laSSify s heds as per manent structures,
wh ic h can affect prope rty taxes, among ot he r
consequences. Hes ide nts in many areas may
need to install spec ial ti e-downs or ground
anc hors accord ing to loca l laws . If your building
department requ ires a "frost-p roof' fou ndation (so
the bui lding won't move with the freezing ground),
you s hou ld be ab le to pass inspection by bui ld ing
yo ur s hed on concrete piers (see page 32). Note:
I-nfoflllation for fanning, reinforcing, and bracin.g
deeper foundation. walls is Hot included here. A safe
rnle of thulltb is tile depth required to get below
the frost in cold climates is 4 feet, though colder
places like Canad" and Alaska can have frost depth.s
up to 8 feet.
cl imates. Often a shed that has risen out of level will
correct itself with the spring thaw, but if it doesn't, you
can lift t he shed wi t h jacks on the low side and add
gravel beneat h t he skids to level it .
Tools & Materials
Shove l
4-ft. level
Straight, 8-ft. 4 x 4
Hand tamper
Circular sa\v
Treated wood t imbers
Compacti ble gravel
''''ood scaler-preservati ve
I How to Build a Wooden Skid Foundation
A. Hemove 4" of soil in a n area about 12" wider a nd
longer than t he d imens ions of the building.
B. Fi ll t he excavated area with a 4" layer of
compactible gravel. Rake t he gravel smooth,
then check it for level us ing a 4-ft. level and a
straight, 8-ft .-long 2 x 4 . Rake the gravel until it is
fairly level.
C. Tamp the gravel thoroughly using a ha nd tamper
or a rented plate compactor. As you vmrk, check
the surface with the board and level, and add or
remove gravel unt il t he surface is leve l.
A. Cut the skids to length, using a c irc ular s;:wv or
rec iprocating saw. (Skids typi call y run parallel to
the length of the building and are cut to the same
dimension as the Aoor frame. )
B. To angle-cut the ends, measure down I Y2 1! to 211
from the top edge of eac h skid. Use a square to
mark a 45 cutt ing line down to the bottom edge.
then make the c uts.
C. Coat the cut ends of t he slcids "'.l ith a wood sealer-
preservative and let them dry.
D. Set the skids on the grave l so t hey are para ll e l and
their ends arc even. Make sure the outer skids arc
spaced accord ing to the \\liclth of t he building.
If desired, mark and clip the bottom corners of the skid ends.
Use a square to mark a 45
angle cut.
Excavate the building site and add a
4" layer of compactible gravel. Level, then
tamp the gravel with a hand tamper or
rented plate compactor (inset).
A. Leve l one of the outside skids, adding or
removing gravel from underneath. Set the level
parallel and level the skid a long its length, then
set the level perpe ndi cu lar and level t he skid
along its widt h.
B. Place the straight 2 x 4 a nd level across the erst
and second ski ds, the n adjust the second skid
un til it's level \vi th the fi rst. lVlci ke SLI re the second
skid is level along its vvidt h.
C. Leve l t he re ma ini ng skids in the same fashion ,
then set the board and level ac ross a ll of t he
skids to ma ke su re t hey they a re leve l with
one a not her.
using a board and a level, make sure each skid is level
along its width and length, and is level with the other skids.
BlIihiillg Basics 29
I Concrete Block Foundation
Concrete block foundations are easy and inexpensive
to build. I n terms of si mpli city, a block foundation is
second only to the wooden skid. But the real beauty of
th is design is its abi lity to accommodate a sloping site:
All you have to do is add blocks as needed to make the
fOllndation leveL
Blocks suitable for foundat ions are commonly
ava ilable at home centers and masonry suppl iers.
Standard blocks measure 8 X 16" and come in 211 and 4
thicknesses. Be sure to usc only soli d concrete blocks,
not rcgular buil ding block- the kind with large voids
for fil ling v'lit h concrete. Also avoid t he various types of
decorative block, which may have holes or odd shapes
and probctbly won't be strong enough for th is appli cation.
On a level site, YOLI can lise a Single 41!-t hick block
for each support point. On a slope, a com hi nation of
4" and 2" blocks shoul d get you close enough to shim
Tools & Materials
Mason's li nes & stakes
Excavat ion tools
Hand tamper
2- f t . level
4-ft. level
Long, straight 2 X 4
Caulkj ng gun
Compact ible gravel
Solid concrete bl ocks
Asphal t shingles or
I X 8 prcssure-
treated lumber,
as needed
(vvith lumber or asphalt shingles) the foundation up to
level. Sett ing the blocks on smal l beds of gravel helps
prevent erosion or excess water from undermining
the foundat ion. Avoid excavating and rell iling
beneath the blocks other than to create a base for
compactible gravel, as that may lead to settling. Note:
All reinforcing steel (bars, mesh, or anchor bolts) should
have a mini'lltulll of 1 Y2" concrete cover. Without this
cover, steel will likely rust and cause spalling of concrete.
A 2 x 8 mud sill adds strength to a standard 2 x 6
floor frame. First, you fasten the side rim joists to
the sill, then you set the assembly on top of the
foundation blocks and install the remaining floor
A foundation created with solid concrete
blocks on a prepared base is simple to
build and makes an easy solution to
dealing with low slopes.
I How to Build a Concrete Block Foundation
A. Using four mason's lines t ied to stakes, plot the
foundation layout. The foundation exterior should
equal the outer dimensions of the floor frame.
Use the 3-4-5 method to e nsure perfect ly square
byollt lines.
B. l ~ a r k the bl ock locations onto the st ri ngs,
and t hen onto the ground: Locate t he corne r
blocks at the string inte rsections, and locate the
intermediate blocks at equal interva ls between the
corner blocks. For an 8 x 10-ft. or 8 x 12-ft. shed,
one row of fou r blocks (or block stacks) running
down eac h s ide of t he shed is sufficient.
C. Remove the mason's li nes, but leave the stakes in
place. At each bloc k location dig a 16 X 20" hole
that is 4" deep. Tamp the soi l.
D. Add a laye r of compact ible grave l in eac h hole
and tamp \vell, adding gravel if necessary to bring
the top of the gravel up to grade. Tamp all added
A. For the first block, rcti e the mason's lines. At
the hi ghest point on t he gravel bcd, squa re up a
4"-th ick block to the layou t lines.
B. Leve l the block in bot h directions, adding or
removing gravel as needed.
C. Tape a 4-ft. level to t he center of a long,
straight 2 x 4.
D. Set lip eac h of the rema in ing blocks or bloc k
stacks, using the level and 2 X 4 spanni ng from
t he first block to ga uge the proper height. Sta rt
eac h stack wi th a 4"-thick block, and make
sure the block itse lf is level before adding more
blocks. Use 2" bloc ks as needed to add he ight ,
or s him stacks \"l ith tri mmed pi eces of asphalt
shi ngles or I x 8 pressure-treated lumber.
E. Use the level and 2 X 4 to make sure all of t he
blocks and stacks are leve l with one a not her.
A. Glue stac ked bl ocks together with construc ti on
adhes ive. Also glue [lny shi m material to the tops
of the bl ocks.
B. After gl uing, check to make sure a ll blocks and
stacks are level wit h one another, and that they
are on the layout lines, the n remove the stri ngs
and stakes.
create a bed of compacted gravel centered at each block
location in your layout.
Set a block at the highest point on the site, check it with
a level, and adjust as needed. (Inset) Use a level and board
spanning across the blocks to establish the height of each
stack so all the tops are level.
Bind stacked blocks together with exterior-rated
construction adhesive to prevent shifting.
BlIihiillg Basics 31
I Concrete Pier Foundation
Foundation piers are poured concrete cylinders that
you for m using cardboard tubes . The tubes come in
severa l diameters and are commonl y available from
bu il ding materials suppli ers. For a standard 8 x 10-ft.
shed, a suitable fou ndat ion consists of one row of
three 8
-diameter piers funning dO\'VIl the long sides
of the shed.
You can anc hor the shed's floor fra me to the piers
llsing a vari ety of methods. The simplest met hod
(shown here) is to bolt a wood block to t he top of each
pier, the n faste n t he floor frame to t he blocks . Ot her
anc hori ng options involve metal post bases and va ri ous
framing connectors eit her set into t he \vet concrete or
fastened to the piers after the concrete has cured. Be
Slire to consult yo ur loca l building department for
the recommended or requi red anchori ng specifications.
Piers that extend below t he frost line-the ground
depth to which the earth freezes each winter- wi ll
keep your shed from sh ift ing during annuul freeze-
t haw cycles. Thi s is a stclll du rd requirement for
mujor st ructures, like houses, but not typicall y
for Freesta nding sheds (check \,vith your building
department ), Anot her advantage of t he pier foundation
is that you can extend t he piers wel l above the ground
to accommodate a sloping site. Note: All concrete
sh01dd have contpacted gravel utu:lerneath and aga;-nst
bach walls as bachfill. All reinforcing steel shoHld have
a ntinimum of J Y2 " concrete cover.
I How to Build a Concrete Pier Foundation
Tools & Materials
Circular saw
Mason's line
Line level
Framing squa re
Plumb bob
Post hol e digger
Rec iprocating sm\'
or handsaw
Ut ility kni fe
Ratchet wrench
2 x 4 lumber
A. Cut two 24"- long 2 X 4 legs for each batter board
(for most projects you' ll need eight batter boards
tota l). Cut one end square and cut t he other end to
a sharp point, using a circ ul ar saw. Cut one 2 x 4
crosspiece for each bCltter board at ctbout l 8",
B. Assembl e c<:Ic h batter bOClrd lIsing 2W' sc rews.
Fasten the crosspiece about 2" from the square
e nds of the legs. fvJake sure the legs are para ll el
and t he crosspiece is perpendi cular to the legs.
2 W' scrc\vs
Masking tape
concrete forms
Pape r
Concret e mix
J-bolts wit h washers
and nuts
2 X 10 pressure treated
lumber (rated for
grou nd contact )
A. Measure and mark t he locations of t he four corner
piers wi th stakes, following your project plan.
B. Set two batt er boa rds to form a corne r a bo ut
18" beh i nd eac h stake. Dri ve the batt e r
boards into the ground unti l t hey are secure ,
keepi ng the c ross pi eces rough ly leve l with
one a nother.
BlI i hiillg Basics 33
Cut the batter board pieces from 2 x 4 lumber and
assemble them with screws.
C. St retch a mason's line between t\vo batt er boards
at opposing corne rs (not di agonall y) and tic the
ends to neli ls dri ven into the top edge of t he
crosspieces; align the nai ls and li ne wit h t he
stakes. Attac h a li ne leve l to the line, and pull the
line very taLlt , making Sli re it's level before tying it.
D. liun a second level line perpendicular to the
first: Tie off the end that's closest to t he first
string, then stretch the line to the opposing batter
board whil e a he lper holds a fr aming sguare at
the intersection of the lines. 'VVhen the l ines are
perpendicular, drive a nail and t ie off the far e nd.
E. Confi rm that t he lines are exact ly pe rpe ndicular,
llsing the 3A -5 method: Starting at the
intersect ion, measure 3 ft . along one st ring
and make a mark onto a pi ece of masking tape.
Mark the othe r st ring 4 ft. from the intersection.
Meas ure diagonally between the two marks;
the distance should eq ual 5 ft. lieposition the
second st ring, if necessary, unti l the di agona l
me<Jsurement is 5 ft.
A. Foll owing your plan, meas ure from the existing
lines and use the 3-4-5 method to add two more
perpendi cu lar lines to form a layout with four
90 corners. Use the li ne level to make sure t he
mason's lines are level. The intersections of the
lines should mark the centers of the corner piers,
not necessa ril y the outside edge of Roor framing.
B. C heck the squa re ness of you r line layout by
measuring diagonall y from corner to corner: vv hen
the measurements are equal, the frame is square.
iVlake any necessary adjustments.
Tie the mason's lines securely to the nails, and level the
lines with a line level (inset, left). Use tape to mark paints on
the lines (inset, light).
C. Plumb down with a plumb bob and place a stake
directly under eac h li ne intersection. iVlark the
locations of intermedi ate piers onto the layout st rings,
then plumb down <Jnd drive stakes at those locations.
D. Untie each line at one end onl y, the n coil the line
and place it out of the way. Leaving one e nd ti ed
wil l make it easier to restring the lines late r.
A. Dig holes for the forms, centering them around
t he stakes. The holes shoul d be a few inches
larger in diameter t ha n the cardboa rd for ms. The
hole depth rn ust rneet the local building code
requi re ments- add 4" to t he depth to a ll ow for
a layer of gravel. For deep holes, use a posthole
digge r or a rented power auger. Add 4 II of gravel
to t he bottom of eac h hole.
B. Cut each cardboard form so it will extend at least
3" above the ground. The tops of all pie rs/ forms
should be level wit h eac h other. Also, the top
ends of the forms must be strai ght, so place the
fac tory-cut e nd up, whenever possible. Ot herwise,
mark a straight cutting li ne usi ng a large piece
of paper vvith at least one straight edge: \J\lrap
the pape r completely arou nd t he for m so t hat it
overlaps itse lf a few inches. Pos ition the straight
edge of the paper on the cutt ing mark, and al ign
t he overl appi ng edges of the paper with each other.
iVlark around the tube along the edge of the paper.
Cut the tube with a reciprocat ing saw or handsaw.
C. Set the tubes in the holes and fill in around them "oth
di rt. Set a level across the top of each tube to make
sure the top is level as you secure the tube \ A ~ t h dirt.
Pack the dirt fi rmly, using a shovel handle or a stick.
Use a plumb bob to mark the pier locations. Drive a stake
into the ground directly below the plumb bob pointer
Fill the forms with concrete, then set the J-bolts. Check
with a plumb bob to make sure the bolts are centered.
A. Hestring the mason's lines and confirm that the
forms are posit ioned accurately.
B. Mix the conc rete follov,ring the manufact urer's
direct ions; pre pare only as muc h as YOLI ca n eas ily
work \,vith before the concrete sets . Fill each form
with concrete, ll sing a long stick to tamp it dO\vn
and eliminate air pockets in the concrete. Overllll
the form sli ghtl y.
C. Level t he concrete by pulling a 2 x 4 on edge
across the top of the form, using a side-to-side
sawing mot ion. Fill low spot s with concrete so
that the top i s perfect ly Aat.
D. Set a J-bolt into the wet concrete in the center of
the form. Lower the bolt slowly, wiggling it sli ght ly
to eliminate air pockets. Use a plumb bob to make
sure the bolt is al igned exactly with the mark on
Wrap paper around the form to mark a straight cutting line
(Inset). Set the forms In the holes on top of a 4" gravel layer.
Anchor a block to each pier with a washer and nut. If
desired, countersink the hardware (inset).
t he mason's line. Note: You can set the bolt at J Yi ll
above the concrete so it will be flush with the top
of the bloch, or extend it abont 2/1" so the washer
and nut will si t on top of tile block; doing the latter
means you won't have to countersink the washer and
nut. Make sure the bolt is plu'lHb, then smooth the
concrete around the bolt and let the concrete cnre.
A. Cut 8 X 8" square blocks f rom 2 X 10 pressure-
treated lumber that's rated for ground contact.
B. Drill a hol e for the J-bol t through the exact cent er of
each block; if you' re countersinlUng the hClfd\vare,
flrst drill a counterbore for the washe r and nut.
C. Positi on each bl oc k on a pi er, then add a galva ni zed
was her and nut. Use the layollt strings to align the
blocks, then ti ghten thc nuts to secure the blocks.
BlIihiillg Basics 35
I Concrete Slab Foundation
The slab foundation commonly used for sheds is
call ed a sla b-on-grade foundation. This combines a
3W'- to 4"-thick fl oor slab with an 8"- to 12"- thi ck
perimeter footing that provides ext ra s upport for the
wall s of the building. The whole foundation can be
poured at one time using a s impl e \vood fOfm.
Because they sit above ground, slab-on-grade
foundations arc susceptible to frost heave and in
cold-weather climates arc suitabl e only for detached
buildings. Specifi c design requirements a lso vary by
locality, so c hec k with the local building department
regarding the depth of the slab, the meta l reinforcement
required, the type and amount of gravel required for
the subbase, and whet her plast ic or anot her type of
moi sture barrier is needed under the slab.
Tools & Materials ~
Circular S3\'V
Mason's line
Line level
Fra ming square
Wheel barrow
Re nted plate compactor
Bolt cutte rs
Bull floa t
concrete float
Concrete edger
Compacti bl e gravel
2 X 3 & 2 X 4 lumber
I ~ I & 2Y2"
deck screws
lI," A-C pl ywood
Sd nail s
5 X IO-ft. wel ded wire
mesh (W'vVM)
1 Y2 1! brick pavers
2"-thi ck rigid
fO<:lm insulation
The slab shown in thi s project has a 3l;2"-thi ck
interior wi th an 8
-wide X 8"-deep footi ng a long the
perimeter. The top of the slab sits 4" above ground
level, or grade. There is a 4"-thick layer of compacted
gravel underneath the slab cllld the concrete is
reinfo rced intermtlly v.l ith a layer of 6 x 6" ''YIo welded
wire mes h (WWM). (In some areas, you may be
required to add rchar in the foundation perimeter-
check the local code. ) After the conc rete is poured
and finished , 8"- long ga lvani zed J-bolts arc set into the
sla b along the edges . These arc used later to anchor
t he wa ll framing to the slab. Note: ALL concrete should
have compacted graveL underneath and the back
wall as backfill. All reinforcing steel should ',ave a
minimum of J Y2 !! concrete cover.
Btl -thick
I How to Build a Concrete Slab Foundation
A. Set up batter boards and run level mason's lines
to represent t he outer dimensions of the s lab.
Use the 3-4-5 method to ma ke sure your lines
are perpendi cul ar, and c heck your final layout for
squareness by measuri ng the diagona ls.
B. Excavate the area 4
wi de r and longer t han the
string layo ut- this provides some room to work.
For the footi ng port ion a long the perimeter, dig a
trench that is 8" wide X 8" deep.
C. Re move 3Y/ of soil over t he interi or
porti on of the s la b, then s lope the
inner si des of the trenc h at 4 5. Set up
temporary c ross strings t o c heck the depth as
you wo rk.
D. Add a 4" layer of compact ibl e grave l ove r
t he ent ire excavation and rake it level.
Compact the gravel thoroughly, usi ng a ren ted
pl ate compactor. Note: 1111 areas are to be
level (fiat ).
Measure down from the layout lines and temporary cross
strings to check the depth of the excavation.
Drive stakes every 12" to support the form, using the
mason's lines to make sure the form remains straight.
A. Cut sheets of %" A-C plyv/ood into six strips
of equal \vidth-about 7'lij 1l, a llowing for the
thickness of the saw blade. To make sure the
cuts a re st raight , li se a tabl e saw or a circular saw
and strai ghtedge.
B. Cut the plywood strips to le ngth to create the sides
of the form. Cut t\VO sides 1 W I long so they can
overl ap t he remaining two sides. For sides that are
longer t heln 8 ft. , joi n t\VO st rips \vit h a me nding
plate made of scrap plywood; faste n the plate to
the back sides of the strips with I Y.t " screws .
C. Assembl e the form by fastening the corners
toge ther wi th screws . The form's inne r d ime nsions
must equal t he outer dime nsions of the s la b.
A. Cut 18"- long stakes from 2 X 3 lu mbe r- you' ll
need one sta ke for eve!), linear foot of form, plus
Assemble the form pieces with 2W deck screws, then
check the inner dimensions of the form. For long runs, jOin
pieces with plywood mending plates.
Layout sheets of wire mesh, tie the rows together, then
prop up the mesh with brick pavers or metal bolsters.
one extra stake for eac h corne r. Taper one e nd of
eac h stake to a point.
B. Pl aee the form in the trench and align it with the
mason's lines. Dri ve a stake near the end of each
side of the form, sett ing t he stake edge aga inst the
form a nd driving dovm to 3
above grade.
C. Measuring down from the mason's lines, position
t he form 4" above grade. Tack the for m to the
stakes with part ia ll y drive n 8d na il s (driven
through the form into the stakes). Measure the
diagonals to make sure the form is square a nd
check that the top of t he form is level. Drive the
nails completel y.
D. Add a stake every 12" and drive the m down
be low the top edge of the form. Secure the form
\",' it h two Sd nail s driven into each stake. As you
work, c heck with a string line to make sure the
for m sides are straight and the tops are level, and
meas ure the diagona ls to check for square.
BlIihiillg Basics 37
Screed the concrete after filling the form, uSing two
people to screed, whil e a third fi ll s low spots with a shovel.
A. Layout rO\vs of 6 X 6" lo/io welded \vire mes h so
their ends are J V/ to 2" from t he insides of t he
forms. Cut the mes h "v ith bolt cutters or heavy
pl ie rs, and stand on t he unroll ed mesh as you cut,
to prevent it from springing back. Overl ap the
sheets of mes h by 61! and t ic t he m together with
t ic wire .
B. Prop up the mesh wit h pieces of I Yi'-th ick bric k
pavers or metal bolsters. The WWM should be
just belov,r the center of the slab (about 2" down
in a 3V2" slab).
C. Ma rk the layout of the J-bolts onto the top edges
of t he form, fol lowing your plan . (J-bolts typically
are placed 4" to 6" from eac h corner and every
3 ft. i n between, but may vary. )
A. Esti mate and order concrete (see page 39).
Start ing at one end, fi ll in t he for m with concrete,
using a shovel to distribute i t. Usc t he shovel
blade or a 2 x 4 to stab into the conc rete to
el iminate air pockets a nd sett le it around the wire
mesh and along t he forms. Fill wit h concrete to
the top of the for m.
B. As the for m fi ll s, have two he lpe rs screed t he
concrete, using a straight 2 x 4 or 2 X 6 t hat
spans t he form: Drag t he sc reed board along
t he top of t he form, working it back and fo rt h
in a sawing mot ion. Throw shove lfu ls of
concrete ahead of t he screed board to fi II low
spots. The goa l of screeding is to make t he
surface of the concrete perfectl y nat and level,
if not smoot h.
C. Gently rap the outsides of the for m wi th a
hammer to settl e the concrete along the inside
faces of the fo rm. This he lps smooth the sides
of t he sla b, but too much wil l cause aggregate to
settle a nd concrete wil l "scale" or "spall ."
Float the slab with a bull float, then set the J-bolts at the
marked locations (inset).
A. Immediately after sc reeding t he concrete, make
one pass wit h a bull floa t to smooth t he surface.
Add small amounts of concrete to fi ll low spots
created by the fl oating, t he n smooth those a reas
wit h the fl oat. Floating forces the aggregate down
and draws t he water and sand to the su rface .
B. Set t he ga lvanized J-bolt s into the concrete Il-\ "
from t he outs ide edges of the slab (bottom should
t urn in toward the slab). Work t he bol ts into t he
concrete by wiggling them slightl y to eliminate ai r
pocket s. The bolt s should be plumb and prot rude
2Y2" from t he slab surface. After setting eac h bolt,
smooth the concrete arou nd the bolt, using a
magnes ium or wood conc rete Roat.
C. vVatch the concrete carefull y as it cures. The
bull -floati ng will cause water (call ed bleed water)
to ri se, casting a sheen on the surface. \I\'ait for the
bleed water to disappea r and the surface to hecome
du ll. Pressure- test t he concrete fo r fir mness by
stepping on it with one foot: if your foot sinks YI n or
less, the concrete is ready to be fin ished. Note: Air-
entrained concrete may have very little bleed water, so
it's best to rely all the pressure test.
D. Float the concrete \vith a hand-held magnesi um
or wood fl oat, working t he fl oat back and forth
unt il the surface is smoot h. If you can't reach the
entire slab from the sides, lay pieces of 2"-t hick
rigid foam insulation over t he concrete and kneel
on the insulation. \ ~ o r k bac kwards to cover up
any impressions.
E. Use a concrete edging tool to round over the slab
edge, runni ng the edger bet\veen the slab and t he
fo rm. If you wa nt a very smoot h fin ish, work the
concrete \\lith a trowel.
F. Let the concrete cure for 24 hours, then stri p t he
forms. Wait an addit ional 24 hours before buildi ng
on the slab.
Estimating & Ordering Concrete
A slab for a shed requires a lot of concrete: an 8 x 10-ft
slab designed like the one in this project calls for about
1.3 cubic yards of concrete; a 12 x 12-ft. slab, about 2.3
cubic yards. Considering the amount involved, you'll
probably want to order ready-mix concrete delivered by
truck to the site (most companies have a minimum order
charge). Tell the mixing company that you're using the
concrete for an exterior slab.
An alternative for smaller slabs is to rent a concrete
trailer from a rental center or landscaping company; they
fill the trailer with one yard of mixed concrete and you tow
it home wi th your own vehicle.
If you're haVing your concrete delivered, be sure to
have a few helpers on-hand when the truck arnves; neither
the concrete nor the driver will wait for you to get organized.
Also, concrete trucks must be unloaded completely, so
designate a dumping spot for any excess. Once the form IS
filled, load a couple of wheelbarrows with concrete (in case
you need it) then have the driver dump the rest Be sure
to spread out and hose down the excess concrete so you
aren't left with an immovable boulder in your yard.
If you've never worked with concrete, fi nishing a large
slab can be a challenging introduction; you might want
some experienced help with the pour.
Calculate the amount of concrete needed for a slab of this
design uSing this formula:
Width x Length x Depth, in ft. (of main slab)
Multiply by 1.5 (for footing edge and spillage)
Divide by 27 (to convert to cubic yards)
Example- for a 12 x 12-ft. slab:
12 x 12 x .29 (3W) = 41.76
41 .76x 1.5 = 62.64
62.64 .,. 27 = 2.32 cubic yards
Tips for Pouring Concrete
Timing is key to an attractive concrete finish. When
concrete is poured, the heavy materials gradually sink,
leaving a thin layer of water- known as bleed water- on
the surface. To achieve an attractive finish, it's Important
to let bleed water dry before proceeding with other steps.
Follow these rules to avoid problems:
Settle and screed the concrete and add control joints
immediately after pouring and before bleed water
appears. Otherwise, crazing, spaliing. and other flaws
are likely.
Let bleed water dry before floating or edging.
Concrete should be hard enough that foot pressure
leaves no more than a %"-deep impreSSion.
Do not overfloat the concrete; it may cause bleed
water to reappear. Stop floating If a sheen appears,
and resume when It IS gone.
Note. Bleed water does not appear with air-entrained
concrete, which is used in regions where temperatures
often fall below freezing
DO not overload your wheelbarrow Experiment with sand or dry mix to find a comfortable, controllable volume. This
also helps you get a feel for how many wheelbarrow loads it will take to complete your project
Once concrete IS poured and floated It must cure. It should not dry. If it is a hot day It IS a good idea to spray mist
from a hose after it has "set" to keep it moist Make sure you have a flat stable surface between the concrete source
and the forms.
Start pouring concrete at the farthest point from the concrete source, and work your way back.
BlIihiillg Basics 39
I Framing the Structure
raming is one of the most satisfying phases of a
building project. Us ing basic tools and materia ls,
you'll <:Issemble the skel eton of the structure, pi ece by
piece, and in the process learn the fundamentals of
carpentry. The style of framing shown here is standard
2 X 4 framing, also ca ll ed sti c k framing. For an
a lternative style, sec the Timber-frame Garde n Shed
on page 180.
The tools you' ll use for most framing are the
ci rc ul ar saw (and power miter saw, if you have one),
framing square, level, chalk line, and, of course, a
framing hamn1er. Na ils used fo r most framing are
call ed common nail s. These have a larger diameter
tha n box na il s, making them stronger, but also more
like ly to split t hinne r stock. Box nai ls are better
for siding, trim, and other nonstruc tura l mate rials.
I Floor Framing
Floor frames for sheds are simple versions of house
floor fra mes. They have outside, or rim, joists t hat are
set on edge and n<Ji led to the ends of the comlllon
joists. On top of floor frallles , a layer of tongue-and-
groove pl )'\,vood provides the fl oor surface and adds
strength to the frame. To prevent rot , ah'vays use
pressure-treated lumber and galvanized nai ls a nd
hardware for floor frames.
The th ree most commonly used na iling tec hni ques
are shown in the illustrations below. Some framing
con nect ions, suc h as where rafters meet \,vall pl ates,
requi re meta l connectors fo r increased strength.
Nailing Techniques
Endnailing Facenailing Toenailing
Tools & Materials
Circular saw
Pressure- treated
2x lumber
Sd and l 6d ga lvanized
common na il s
0/.; 11 tongue-a nd-groove
exterior-grade plywood
I How to Build a Shed Floor Frame
A. Cut the two rim joists and the common joists to
length, making sure both ends are square. Note
that rim joists rlln the full lengt h of the Aoor, while
common joists are 3" shorter tha n the floor width.
B. C heck the ri m joists for crowning- arching
along the narrow edges. Pi ck up one e nd of the
board and hold it flat. With one eye closed, sight
dO\vn the narrO\v edges. I f the bO<Jrd a rches, even
slightl y, Illark t he edge on the top (convex) s ide
of the arch. Thi s is the crowned edge and should
a lways be install ed facing up. If the board is
crO\vned in bot h direc t ions, Illark the edge with
the Illost signi flcant crmvning.
Tack together the rim joists, then mark the Joist layoul. Use
a square to transfer the marks to the second 11m joist.
- -- --

- - - -
Measure diagonally from corner to corner. If the
measurements are equal. the frame is square.
C. Lay one rim joist Aat on top of t he other so the
edges and ends are Aush and the crowned edges
are on t he same si de. Tack the joists toget her \\lit h
a few 8d nai ls. Turn the joists on edge and mark
the common joist layout on the top edges: Mark
1 W' and 15Yi" from the e nd of one joist. The n,
meas uring from t he J 5V4
mar k, make a mark
every 16"- at 32", 48" , 64" and so on, to t he end
of the board (if the plan call s for 24" spac ing,
make a mark at I Y2 " unci 23W', then every 24"
from there). Don't worry if the last space before
the opposi te e nd joist isn't as \vide as the others.
Make a mark I W' in from the remaining end .
Aft er each mark, draw a small X designating
whi ch side of the line the joist goes- thi s is a
handy framers' tri ck to prevent confusion . This
layou t e nsures that the edges of a 4-ft. or 8-ft.
board or sheet wi ll fa ll , or brea k, on t he center of
a joist.
D. Using a square, draw lines through eac h of t he
layout marks, carrying the m over to the other rim
joist. Draw Xs on the other joist, as \,vell. Separate
the joists a nd remove t he nails.
A. Check the (\,vo end joists for crown ing, then nail
them between the rim joists so t he ir outside faces
are flu sh "vith t he rim joist e nds and the top edges
are flu sh. Drive two 16d ga lva nized common nai ls
th rough the rim joists and into the ends of the end
joists, posi tioning the nai ls about from the top
and bottom edges.
install the plywood perpendicular to the jOists. Start each
row with a full sheet and stagger the end-JOints between rows.
B. Install the remain ing joists, making sure the
crowned edges are fac ing up. Joi sts should be
square to edge of rim joist s.
C. Check the frame for squareness by measuring
di agona ll y from corner to corner: \-vhe n the
meas ure ments are eq ua l, the frame is square . To
adjust the frame, apply inward pressure to the
corners with t he longer meas ure ment.
D. If you're building the floor over s kids, sec ure eac h
joist to the outs ide skids with a metal anchor and
toenail the joists to the internal skid(s) wit h 16d
ga lvanized nails.
A. Lay a fu ll sheet of %" tongue-and-groove exteri or-
grade plj'\vood over the frame so t he groove side is
flush a ri m joist and one end is flush with an
end joist. Fasten the pl ywood to the joists with 8d
gdlvanized nail s driven every 6" along the edges and
every 8" in the field ofthe sheet. Do not nail along the
tongue edge until the next row of plywood is in place.
B. Cut the second pi ece to fit next to the first, allowing
for a W' gap between t he sheets. Install the second
sheet with its outside edges flush \vith the frame.
C. Start t he next row wi th a full sheet (ripped to
width, if necessary). Install t he sheet sta rting from
t he corne r opposite the first sheet , so t he joints
between rows are offset. Make su re the tonguc-
and-groove joint is ti ght; if necessary, usc a wood
block a nd a sledgehammer to cl ose the joint. Try
to align factory edges to meet adjacent sheets.
D. Cut and install t he remaining piece of plywood.
BlIihiillg Basics 41
I Wall Framing
Standard framed wall s have verti cal 2 X 4 studs nail ed
between horizontal top and bottom plates. The top
plates arc doubled to provide additional support for
the roof frame and to strengthen the wall connect ions.
Door and \\l indov ..! frames arc made up of king studs;
a header, whic h sup ports crippl e studs above t he
opening; and jack stuel s, whi ch support the header. A
v\rindO\v frame also has a rough sill and cripple studs
belov,l the opening. The opening defined by the fra me
is call ed the rough opening. \I\'all frames gain ri gidity
from ply\vood sheathing, siding, or diagonal I X lumber
braces. If you plan to store automobil es in your shed,
usc #3 or #4 bars 12" on-center (in lieu of WWi\II ).
Building wall s involves three major phases: laying
out and framing the wall s; rais ing the wall s; and tying
the \,valls together and Cldding the doubl e top plates.
Note: If your building llas a concrete slab floor, use
pressure-treated tum.ber for the bottom plates and anchor
the plates to the J-bolts set in the slab (see page 38).
Tools & Materials


Broom Square
4-ft. level
2x lumber WI plywood
Construct ion adhes ive Circ ul ar smv or pm,vcr
miter saw
Sd, IOd, and j 6d common nails
I How to Frame Walls
A. Sweep off the fl oor and make sure it's dry. Cut
a short (about 4 to 6") piece of pl ate material to
lise as a spacer. Posi ti on the spacer at one corner
of the Aoor, with its outs ide edge Rush with the
outside of the fl oor fr ame. Mark a pencil line
along the inside edge of the spacer.
B. Use the spacer to mark the \>\,<1 11 ends at each
corner of the floor (eight marks total). Snap chalk
lines through the marks . These lines represent the
inside edges of the bottom plates .
A. Measure along t he plate layout lines to lind the
lengths of t he plates. Note: Follow your project
use a block cut from plate material to layout the bottom
plates. Mark at the ends of each wall, then snap a chalk line.
Mark the stud layout onto the wall plates, designating the stud locations with
xs. Through walls have an extra corner stud 2%' frorn each end.
construct the headers from
2x lumber and a y," plywood spacer.
plans to detennine which walls run to the edges of
the building (called through walls ) and which butt
into the other walls (called butt walls ).
B. Select st raight lumber for the plates. C ut a top
and bottom plate fo r t he first wa ll , making sure
their dimensions are the sa me. Use a circular saw
or a power miter saw, but make SlIre both ends
arc square. Lay the bottom plate flat on the floor
and set the top plate on top of it. IVlake sure their
edges and ends arc flu sh, then tack the plates
together wi th a few Sd nails.
C. Turn the plates on edge and mark the stud layout
onto the front edges. I f the \,vall is a through
\va ll , make a mark at I Y2 1! and 2%" to mark the
e nd stud and extra corne r stud . Then, mark at
15 Y/ (for 16" on-center spacing) or 23 W' (for
2411 on-center spaci ng)- measuring from this
mark, make a mark every J 6" (or 24") to the e nd
of t he plates. j\/lake mClrks I Y2
and 2-14 " in from
t he opposite end. Foll ovving you r pl an, draw an
X next to eac h mark, des ignating to whi ch s ide
of t he line t he stud goes. Mark the king and jack
studs with a K and] respecti vel y, and mark the
cripple studs with a C. If the wal l is a butt wa ll ,
mark the p late at] Y2
, then move the tape so
the 3 Y2
tape mark is al igned ",,r ith the e nd of the
plate. Keeping the tape at that position. mark at
J 5Y ..." (for ]6" sp<Jc ing) or 23Y ..." (for 24" sp<Jc ing)
t he n mark every 16" (or 24") from t here. The 3Y2"
that are "buri ed" account for the width of the
through wa ll.
D. Using <J square, dmw lines t hrough each of the
layout marks. carrying them over to t he other
plate. Draw Xs on the other plate, as wel l.
A. Cut the studs to length, following the framing
plan; make sure both ends are sguare. ( Before
cutt ing. give eac h stud a quick inspection to c heck
fo r excess ive bmving or crowning; reserve any bad
studs fo r scra p or blocking.)
B. Select straight lumber for the studs.
Cut the jack studs to equal the he ight of the
rough open ing minus 1 Y2 " (this accounts for the
thickness of the bottom plate); cut the jack st uds
for the window frame to egual the height of t he
top of t he rough opening minus I WI . Cut the king
studs the sa me length as the common studs.
C. To build the headers , c ut two pieces of 2x lumber
(using the size prescri bed by the pla ns) to equal
t he width of the rough opening plus 3" . C hec k t he
boards for crowning, and mar k the top edges. Cut
a piece of WI plywood to the same dimensions as
t he lumber pi eces.
D. Apply two wavy beads of construction adhesive to
each side of the pl y\vood and sa ndwich the lumber
pieces around the plyv.rood, keeping all edges
flu sh. Na il the header together with pairs of 16d
common nails spaced about 12" apart. Drive the
nails at a slight angle so they won' t protrude from
the other s ide. Na il from both sides of the header.
BlIihiillg Basics 43
Frame the walls with 16d nails endnailed through the plates
into the studs. Toenail cripples to headers with 8d nails.
A. Separate t he marked plates and remove the nai ls.
Position t he plates on edge, about 8 ft. apart, \vith
the marked edges fac ing up.
B. Set the studs on edge between t he plates, foll owing
the layout marks. Crown all common and king
studs to the same si de. Before setting the d o o r ~ or
window-frame studs, face nail the jack studs to the
inside faces of the king studs with 1 ad common
nails staggered and spaced every 1211; make sure
the bottom ends and s ide edges are flush.
C. Na il all of the studs to the bottom plate, then
to the top plate. Pos iti on each stud on its layollt
mark so it s front edge is flush \.vit h the plate edge
(stud ends square to lengt h of plates), and nail
through the pl ate a nd into the stud end with two
16d common nails (usc ga lvanized nails on the
bottom plate if you r floor is concrete). Dri ve the
nail s about ~ I in from t he plate edges.
D. Set the header in place above the jack studs and
n<:li l t hrough the Izjng studs <:I nd into the header
ends \vith 16d nail s- use fo ur n<:l iis on eac h end
for a 2 X 6 header, and six for a 2 X S header. For
a windmv fr ame, measure up from the bottom of
the bottom plate a nd mark the top of t he si ll on
the inside faces of the jack studs- t his defines
the bottom of the rough open ing. Cut two si ll
Install a diagonal brace to keep the wall square. Make sure
the brace ends won't interfere with the construction.
pi eces to Ilt behveen the jack studs and na il them
together with IOd na il s. Toena il the si ll to the jack
studs wit h 16d nai ls.
E. Cut the crippl e studs to fit between the header
and t he top plate (a nd the si ll and bottom plate,
for windO\v frames). Toenail the cripple studs to
t he plates and headers (a nd sil l) wit h two Sd nai ls
on one side and one more through t he cente r on
t he other si de.
A. C heck the \va ll frame for squareness by measuring
di agona ll y from corner to corner: \t\1hcn the
meas ure ments are equal , the frame is square. To
adjust the frame, apply inward pressure to the
corne rs wit h t he longer measurement.
B. When t he frame is perfectly square, install a
temporal), I X 4 or 2 X 4 brace diagonall y across the
studs a nd plates. Nai l the brace to the fra me with
8d nails. Use t\vo nails on the plates and on every
ot he r st ud. To stabi li ze the st ructure, leave the \-1/<:111
braces in place until the \,\'all s are sheathed or sided.
C. At each end of the \'\'<:IiI, attach a board to br<:lce
t he wa ll upri ght aft er it is raised ; nai l it to the end
stud with one 16d nail. Note: rnstall only one end
brace for the second and third walls; no end brace is
needed for the finulwall.
A. With a he lper, lift the top end of the wa ll and set
the bottom plate on the layout lines you snapped
in Step A. Swi ng out the free ends of the end
braces and tack them to the floor frame to keep
the "vall upright. I f you have a slab fl oor, nail the
braces to stakes in t he ground.
B. Fine tune the \vall pos iti on so the bottom
plate is flush with the chalk li ne, the n nail
the pl a te to the floor wit h 16d nai ls. Drive
a nail eve ry 16" a nd stagge r them so that
hulf go into the rim joist and half go into the
common joi sts. Do not nail t he plat e ins ide the
door ope ning.
C. Pull the na il s at the bottom ends of t he end
braces, and adjust the wall until it is perfectly
plumb, using a 4-ft. level; set the level against a
few diffe rent studs to get an accurate reading.
lieattaeh the end braces with 16d nail s.
Nail the bottom plate to the floor frame, then plumb the
wall and secure it with end braces.
A. Build a nd ra ise the remaining wall s, following
the same procedure used for the first wa ll. After
eac h wa ll is plumbed and braced in position, nail
together the end st uds of the Cl djacent \valls with
16d na ils, dri ven evc'Y 121!. iVlake SUfe the \,vall
ends are flush.
8. Cut t he doubl e top plates from 2 X 4 lumber.
The double top p lates must overlap the top pl ate
joi nt s, so that on through wall s, the double pl ate
is 3 Y2
shorter on each e nd than the top plate; on
butt \'\.'a ll s, the doubl e plate is 3 Y2" longer on eac h
end. Nai l the doubl e top plates to the top plates
"vit h I Od na il s. Dri ve two nai ls at t he ends of the
plates that overlap inte rsecting wa ll s, and one nai l
every 16" in between.
C. Use a ha ndsaw or reciprocating saw to cut out the
bottom plate in the door opening.
Nail together the corner studs of intersecting walls
(inset). Add the double top plates, overlapping the wall corners.
BlIihii llg Basics 45
I Roof Framing
A roof fmme is an important structure not only beca use
it supports the roofing and hel ps keep t he buil d ing dry,
but because its style and shape have a great impact on
the character of the bui lding, the fee l of the interior
space, Cl nd t he amount of storage spuce Clva ilable.
There are fOllr common roof types shown in th is
book. A gable roof is the classic, triangul<J r deSign,
with two sloped sides meeting at the pea k, and fl at
ends (call ed gable ends). Gambrel roofs are like gable
roofs with an extra joint on each side, resul ting in tV"D
diffe rent slopes . A hip roof is structurall y similar to a
gable, but has no gable enels. Shed roofs are the simplest
style, with on ly one sloped plane. They ca n be buil t with
frames or, fo r small st ructures, a sheet of plyv/ood.
Al l of t hese roof styles have a deSignated slope,
whi ch is the degree of angle of each side. The slope is
expressed in a rati o that states the number of inches of
vertica l ri sc per 12" of hori zontal run. For example, a
roof t hat rises 6" for every 12" of ru n is sa id to have a
slope of 6-in- 12 . Roof slope is indicated in drawings by
a triangular symbol knO\vn as the roof-slope indicator.
You'll use t he roof slope to layout rafters and fascia.
Raft ers
In sta ndard roof fra ming, rafters are the pri nc ipal
st ructura l members, risi ng from the wa ll s to t he ri dge
board at t he peak of t he roof. Rafters in outbuil dings
typically are made from 2 X 4s or 2 X 6s, are spaced
16" or 24" on center, a nd are install ed perpendiculm
to the length of the building. To keep the roof pla nes
from spreading apart, rafter t ies, or coll ar ti es, a re
nailed bet\,veen opposing rafters to form a st ructura l
triangle. \Nit h shed-style roofs, t he rafters spa n from
wa ll -to-\,va ll and no ridge board or ties are needed .
The key to successful roof framing is making
accurate cuts on the rafters. Take your ti me to cut the
nrst two rafters, making any necessary adjustments,
t hen lise one as a pattern for marki ng t he rest.
As an alternat ive to rafter framing, you ca n take
your plans to a truss ma nufact urer and have custom
trusses bui lt for your project. Hm,vever, t his will cost
you more and probably will limi t you r storage space:
t he interna l supports in truss frames leave littl e room
for storage.
Tools & Materials
C ircu lar saw
Framing sq uare
4-ft. level
2x lumbe r
Sd, 10d, and 16d
common nails
Marking Angles with a Speed Square
A speed square IS a handy tool for marking angled cuts-
using the degree of the cut or the roof slope. Set the
square flange against the board edge and align the pivot
point with the top of the cut. Pivot the square until the
board edge IS aligned wi th the desired degree marking or
the rise of the roof slope, indicated in the row of common
numbers. Mark along the right-angle edge of the square.
BlIihiillg Basics 47
I How to Build a Roof Frame
Note: The following instnlctions are based on the sample
rafter template sllOlIm 1tere, which is designed for a
6-in- J 2 roof slope.
A. Select a straight board to use for t he pattern
rafter. Mark the top plumb cut near one end of
the board: Position a framing square with the 6"
mark of the tongue (short part ) and the 12" mark
of the blade (wide pa rt) on the top edge of the
board. Draw a pencil line along t he outs ide edge
of t he tongue.
B. Start ing from the top of t he plumb-cut ma rk,
measure <:lIa ng t he top edge of the board and mark
the overall lengt h of the rafter, then use the square
to t ransfer t hi s mark to t he bottom edge of the
hoard. Pos it ion the square so the tongue points
dOvvn, and al ign the 6" mark of the tongue and t he
12" mark of the blade with the bottom board edge,
whi le a li gni ng the tongue with the overall lengt h
mark. Drmva line a long t he tongue. [f the bottom
end cut of the rafter is square (perpendicular to
the edges) rather than para ll el to t he top end,
mark a square cut at the overa ll lengt h mark.
A. Measure from t he bottom of the lower plumb
cut and mark t he plumb cut of the bird's mouth.
Position t he square as you did for t he lower plumb
cut and drmv a line across the board face at t he
new mark.
B. iVleasure along the bird's mouth pl u mb cut and
mar k the bird's mouth leve l cut. Use t he square to
draw the leve l cut- it must be perpendicular to
t he birds mouth plumb cut.
Rafter Template
~ Roof-slope indi cator
~ _ - Overa ll le ngth
Bird's mouth level cut - ____ :::::" ....... ----,
Bird's mouth plumb cut -----1L
Bottom plumb cut
Position the framing square at the
6" and 12" marks to draw the top and
bottom plumb-cut lines.
Mark the bird's mouth level cut
by squaring off of the blrd's mouth
plumb cut.
Cut the bird's mouth by overcutting
the lines just until the blade cuts entirely
through the board.
Test-fit the pattern rafters, uSing a spacer made of
2x lumber to represent the ridge board.
A. Cut the rafter ends at the plumb-cut lines, using a
ci rcular smv Of pO\ver miter Sa\'V.
B. Set the base of <1 circular smv to cut at the
maximulll depth. iVlake the bird's mout h cuts,
overcutting sl ightl y to compl ete the Clit through the
thickness of the board. As an alternati ve to
ovcrcutting (for aesthetic reasons), you can stop
the circular smv at the line intersections, then
finish the cuts with a handsa\v. It is not necessary
to overcut 2 x 4 rafters with 8
Of morc overhang.
C. Select another strai ght board to li se as <J second
pattern rafter. Use the original patte rn rafter to
trace the cutting lines onto the dupli cate, then
make the cuts.
A. C ut a 12"- long spacer block from 2 x 6 or
2 x 8 material.
B. With a he lper Of t\'vo, set the two rafters in pbce
on top of the ","lis, holding t he spacer block
hetween the top rafter ends. rVlake sure the rafters
are in line \.vith eac h other (perpendi cul ar to the
wa ll s) and arc plumb.
Mark the rafter layout onto the wall plates and the ridge
board, starting from the same end of the building for each.
C. Check the cuts for fit : The top-end plumb cuts should
meet flush " oth the spacer block, and the bird's
mouths should sit flush agai nst the wall plates. [\!Jake
Sille the top ends are at the same elevation. Recut any
angles that don't fit and test-fit the rafters again.
D. Write "PAT' on the pattern rafter, the n use it to
trace the c utting lines onto the remaining rafters.
Before marking, chec k each rLlfter for crovmi ng
and mark the crowned edge; ah.vays install the
crowned edge up. If your building has overhangs
at the gable ends, mark the end cuts for the
overha ng mft ers but not the bird's mouth c ut s-
overha ng rLlfters don't have the m. Also, if yo u have
t he fascia materi al on hand, use the patte rn raft er
to mark t he angle for the top e nds of the fasc ia
boards (sec page 48).
E. Cut the remaining rafters.
Note: Start the rafter layoHts from the ends of tl18 lUalls
where you started the wall stud layouts. This ensures the
rafters will fall above the studs. Install rafters aligned
wi th the end studs but not the ev'Xtm corner studs.
BlIihiillg Basics 49
Endnail the first rafter to the ridge, then toenail the
second. Reinforce the bottom connection wi th a metal
anchor (Inset).
A. Make a mark on the top wa ll plate I y," in from
the e nd. Then, ma rk at J5Y4 " (for J6" on-center
spaci ng) or 23 Y.! " (for 24" on-center spac ing)-
measuring from this mark, make a mark every 16"
(or 24") to t he end of the wa ll. Make a mark 1\1, "
in from the remaining e nd. Fol lowing your plan,
drmv a n X next to each mark, designating to whi ch
side of the linc the raft er goes.
8. Mark the wa ll on the other side of the building,
sta rti ng from the same end .
C. Cut the ridge board to length, using the plan
dimensions. Check t he board for crovvning, then
lay it on top of the wa ll s next to one of the marked
plates, making sure it overhangs the end wa ll s
equally at bot h ends. Use a square to transfer t he
rafter IaYOllt onto both faces of the ridge board.
A. You'll need a coupl e of helpers and a long, strCli ght
2 X 4 to get the rafters sta rted. Lay the fi rst two
rafters on top of t he wa ll , t hen nail the 2 X 4
to the far end of the ri dge board to se rve as a
temporary support. Set up the rafters at the e nd
of the wa ll s and hold the free e nd of the ridge
board in place between them. Have a he lper tack
Angle-cut the ends of the coliar ties to match the roof
slope and facenai l the ti es to the rafters.
t he rafters to the wa ll plates. Hold a level on the
ridge board and make sure it's leve l, then have a
he lper tack the support to the fa r wal l to keep the
ridge level.
B. Slide one rafter a fevv inches to t he side a nd
endnail the other raft er through the ridge board
wit h three 16d common nai ls (use two nail s for
2 X 4 raft ers). Slide the other rafte r onto its layou t
mark and toenail it to the ridge with fo ur 16d nail s
(three for 2 X 4s). Toenai l the lower end of eac h
rafter to the wa ll pl ate with two 16d nai ls, then
re inforce the joi nt wit h a meta l "lIl chor, Ll sing t he
na ils specified by the manufacturer.
C. Make sure the rafters are plumb and the ridge is
level. I nstall the re maining rafters, checking for
plumb and leve l periodi cally as you work.
A. Cut the collar ties (or rafter ti es) to span between
opposing rafters at t he prescribed e levation,
angle-c utting t he ends to match the roof slope.
B. Pos it ion the coll ar tie e nds against the rafter faces so
the ends are about 1J2" from the rafters edges. Make
sure the ties are level, then facenai l them to the
rafters with three] ad common nail s at each e nd.
Note: Cable walls consist of top plates that attach to
the undersides of the elld rafters, and short studs set on
top of the wall plates. They appear only on gable and
get/nbrel roofs.
A. Cut the top plates to extend from the side of the ridge
board to the wall plates. the ends so they
meet flush with the ridge and wall plate. The top-end
angle matches the rafter plumb ClIt; the bottom angle
matches the level cut of the bird's mouth.
B. Fasten the plates to the rafters so the front plate
edges are flush \vith t he outside faces of the
rafters; li se 16d nail s.
C. Mark the gabl e stud layout onto the wa ll plate,
then usc a level to transfe r the layout to the gable
plates . Cut the gable studs to fit, angle-cutt ing
the ends to match the roof slope. I nstall the gable
studs with Sd toenai ls. Also insta ll a square-cut
stud directl y under t he ridge board.
Note: Cable overhangs are built with additioNal rafters
installed at the gable ends. They are SHpported by tllC
ridge board and blocks-called loolwuts- attached to
the cud rafters.
A. Mark the layouts for the lookouts onto
the e nd rafters, following the project plan.
Cut the lookouts and toenai l them to the
rafters with Sd nails (or cndnail them with
16d nails) so that the top edges of the bloc ks
are flush with, and parallel to, the tops of
the rafters.
B. Install the overhclIlg rafters over t he ends of the
lookouts wit h 16d endnails.
Mark the gable stud layout onto the
main-wall top plate and gable-wall top
plate, then install the gable studs.
Nail the outer gable overhang rafters
to the lookouts. making sure the top edges
of the rafters are flush.
BlIihiillg Basics 51
I Roofing
he roofing phase typica lly follows t he framing,
for most bui ldi ng projects. As it's presented here,
roollng includes installi ng the fasc ia board, the
roof sheathing, a nd of course, t he shingles Of ot her
materi al. You' ll also see how to insta ll roof vents .
Fasc ia board is I X trim material, typica ll y made
of cedar, that covers the ends of the rafters . On gable
and ga mbrel roofs, fascia also covers the end (or gable
overha ng) rafte rs. Sheathing is t he structural deck of
the roof. Depending on the type of roonng used, the
sheathing may be pl ywood, tonguc-&-groove declUng
boards , Of spaced Ix Of 2x lumber.
As for t he roofing, deciding on a materia l is
a matte r of personal taste and pract icality. Three
common types ll sed for outbuildings are covered here:
asp halt shingles, ceda r shingles, and metal roollng.
Asphalt sh ingles are the sta ndard roofing mate rial
for outbui ldings, just as t hey are for houses. For t he
money, aspha lt shingles are the most durable and
low-ma intena nce mater ial ava il able , a nd they come in
a wi de range of colors and styles.
Cedar shingles are a big ste p up in pri ce from
aspha lt, but their visua l appea l is unde ni able . T he
type shown here is the factory-sawn s hingle with fl at,
tapered sides. Cedar sh ingles are less expensive and
easier to install than hand-split cedar shakes.
iVletcd roollng has been used for centuri es on
everything from chi cken coops to cat hedrals, and
in recent years it has become increas ingly popular
in resident ial constructi on. iVlodern forms of metal
roollng are extremely durable and easy to install , and
they still make that ni ce sound ""hen it ra ins.
I Fascia & Sheathing
Fascia board a nd roof sheathi ng are al ways installed
before the roofing, but which one you install llrst is
up to you. Some bui ldings also have a Ix or 2x board
install ed behind the fasc ia, ca ll ed subfas cia. Made
of rough lumber, the subfascia helps cornpensCite for
inconsistency in rafter lengt h, ensuring the fasc ia
will be strai ght. It a lso provides a continuolls nailing
surface for the fas cia. To install subfascia, foll ow the
sa me procedure used for installing fascia, but don't
worry about mitering the ends- just overl ap the
boards at the corners.
The type of sheathing you use depends on the roof
covering. Use CDX pl)"ood (it's exterior-grade) for
asphalt and cedar shi ngles. De pending on the building
deSign, the fascia may be installed Aush with the top of
the sheathing, or the ply\vood may overl ap the fascia.
If YOLI install the fascia first , cut spacers from the
sheathing stoc k and usc them when measuri ng and
install ing the fasc ia. Both shingle types must be installed
over a layer of 1511 building pape r (a lso called tar paper
or roofing felt ), whi ch goes on after the sheathing and
fascia. The paper protects the sheat hing [Tom moi sture
and prevents the shingles from bonding to it.
I How to Install Fascia Board
A. Mark a plumb cut on the top end of the nrst
fascia boa rd: If you didn't mark the fascia boards
with the pattern rafter (page 4S), use a framing
square to mark the plumb cut , follO\ving the
sa me method used for marlUng rafters (page
49). Make the cut with a circ ular savv or pO\ver
mite r smv.
B. Hold the cut e nd of the fascia against t he e nd
rafter. If the fascia will be flus h with the top of
the sheathing, usc spacers set on the rafter and
position the top edge of the fascia flush wi th
the spacers.
C. Have a he lpe r mark t he lower end for length by
tracing a long the rafter end onto the bac k side of
the fascia. Make the cut wi th a 45 beve l (miter).
If you're us ing a c ircular saw, tilt the bl ade to 45
and follow the traced line; if you have a compound
miter saw, rotate the bl ade to matc h the cutting
line and tilt the blade to 45.
As a n alte rnative to pl ywood s hea thing,
you ca n use decking boards as a s hi ngle
unde rlayme nt. Typi call y sold in % dimension
( l YI6" thi ck), board s heat hing creates an
attract ive "ceiling" for the ins ide of a building,
a nd the nails wor)"t s hov.I through as they do \,vith
pl ywood shea thing.
For metal roofing, install purlins---evenly
spaced, parall e l rows of I X or 2x boards na il ed
perpendicular to the rafters. Install the fasc ia over
the ends of the purlins, flush with the tops .
Tools & Materials
Framing square
Circular saw
Fascia &
trim material
6d and Sd galvanized
finish nails
CDX pl ywood
roof sheathing
Sd box nails
15# building paper
Mark the bottom end of the gable fascia by tracing along
the end of the rafter (or the subfascia). If the fascia will be
installed flush with the sheathing, use a spacer for positioning.
BlIihiillg Basics 53
Fasten the fascia to the rafters (or subfascia) with 3d finish nalls, then locknail the corner joi nts with 6d nails. use scarf jOints to
Join boards in long runs (Inset).
D. Temporarily tack the fascia in place against the
rafter wi th a couple of Sci ga lva ni zed finish nails.
liepeat this process to mark, cut, and tack up the
opposing fasc ia piece, then do the sa me at the
other gable end.
A. Cut a 45 bevel on the end of anot he r fascia
piece and fit it aga inst one of the pieces on t he
gable end. If t he board is long enough to s pan
the building, mark t he opposite end to length .
If yo u'll need t wo pieces to complete the eave,
mark the board about Ij/ from the far edge of
a rafte r; cut that e nd with a 45 beve l, angled
so the longer side of the board \vill be against
the rafte r. Cut the remaining piece with a 45
bevel angled in the opposite direction . This
is known as a sca rf joint. Nail these with Sd
galvani zed Rnish nails and drill pilot hol es to
preve nt splitt ing.
B. j\/lake sure the corner joints fit wel l, then tac k t he
fasc ia to the rafters.
C. Cut and tack up t he fa sc ia along the othe r eave.
Make sure all of the joints fit well , then fasten the
fascia permanentl y with 8d galvanized finish nails:
dri ve t hree nails into each rafter end a nd a pa ir of
nails every 161\ along the ga bl e ends.
D. Locknail eac h corner joint \,vith three 6d
ga lvanized fin ish nai ls. If necessary, drill pilot
holes to prevent splitting.
E. Install any addi tional trim, suc h as I X 2,
cal led for by the plan. Miter the e nds for the
best appearance.
I How to Install Plywood Sheathing & Building Paper
A. Lay a fu ll sheet of CDX plywood on top of the
rafters at one of t he ]mver corners of t he roof.
Position t he edges of the sheet VB" from t he fascia
(or the outside edges of the rafters) and make sure
the inside end of the sheet falls over the center of
a rafter; trim the sheet, iF necessary.
B. Fasten the s heet to t he rafters with Sd box nails
spaced every 6" a long the edges and every 12" in
the field of the sheet.
C. Cut and instal l the next s heet to complete t he first
row, leaving a WI gap betv/ee n the sheet e nds.
D. Start the second fO\'V with a half-l ength sheet so
the vertical joints wil l be staggered between rows.
Measure from the top of the first fO\V to the center of
the ridge board, and rip the sheet to that dimension.
E. Install the fi rst sheet of the seeond row, then eut
and install the remaining sheet to complete the row.
E Sheat h the opposite side of the roof following the
same process.
Note: If J'OU (fre installing asphaLt shingLes, add a drip
edge "long the eaves before Laying the building paper.
A. Roll out J 5# bui lding paper ac ross the roof along
the eave edge. If yo u've install ed a drip edge, hold
the paper fiush with the drip edge; if there's no
drip edge, overha ng t he fasc ia on the eave by %11 .
Overhang the gable ends by I to 2" . (On hip roofs,
over ha ng the hip ridges by 6".)
B. Secure the paper wit h staples dri ven about
every 12".
C. Appl y t he remaini ng rows, eac h ove rl ap pi ng
the precedi ng row by at least 2". Overhang the
ridge by 6" . Overlap any vert ical joints by a t
Icast4!1 .
D. Install the paper on the other roof side(s), aga in
overlapping the ridge by 6",
E. Trim the paper Rush \,vith the fascia on the
gabl e ends.
Install the plywood sheathing so the
vertical joints are staggered between rows.
Apply building paper from the bottom
up, so the lower paper is overlapped by
the paper above it.
BlIihiillg Basics 55
I Asphalt Shingles
Asphalt shingles come in a variety of styles. but
most arc based on the standard three-tab system, in
whi ch eac h shingle strip has notc hes creating three
equall y sized tabs on t he lower hal f of the strip.
\ "'hen insta ll ed, the tubs cover the solid portion
of the shingle belm".' it , giving the appearance of
indi vidual shi ngles.
For du rability, lise fiberglass-based shi ngles
rat her t ha n organic- based . If you choose a specialty
style, suc h as a decorative shingle or a type that
is made to appear natural (s imil ar to wood or
sl ate), check with t he manufacturer for specific
insta ll ation instructions.
Prepare the roof for shingles by install ing building
paper and a metal drip edge along t he roof peri meter.
The drip edge covers the edges of the fasc ia and
supports the shingle edges.
Tools & Materials
Nletal sn ips
Chalk l ine
Uti li ty knife
St raightedge
Nletal drip edge
Asphal t shingles
2d roofi ng nails
Roofi ng ce me nt
I How to Install Asphalt Shingles
Note: Install the drip edge along the eaves before applying
building paper; install the drip edge along the gable ends
on top of the paper.
A. Cut a 45 mi ter on the end of a drip-edge piece,
lIsing metal snips. Hold t he end flus h wit h
the corner of the fascia, and faste n the fla nge
of t he drip edge to t he sheathing \,vith roofing
nai ls driven eve!)' 1211. To prevent corros ion, use
galvanized na il s wit h ga lvanized drip edge and
aluminum nai ls wit h aluminum edge. Overl ap
vertica l joi nts by 211.
Install the drip edge along the eaves over the sheathing. Add
the building paper, then Install edging along the gable ends.
B. Apply the bui lding paper over t he entire roof (see
page 55). Install the dri p edge along the gable ends,
over t he paper, cutt ing 45 miters to meet t he e nds
of the eave drip edge. Overl ap hori zontal joint s
by 2
, overl apping the hi gher piece on top of the
lowe r. At the roof pea k, trim the front fla nges so
t he oppos ing edge pieces meet at a vertical joint.
A. Snap a chalk line I I WI li p from the front edge of
t he dri p edge (t his will resu lt in a Y2
overlap for
standard 1211 s hingles).
Trim 6" from the end tab to begin the starter row. Position
the starter course shingles upside down so the tabs point up.
Stagger each course of shingles by % tab, repeating the
pattern after overhanging the edge by 1 % tabs.
8. Trim off one- half (6" ) of the end tab of a shingle,
using a uti li ty kn ife and straightedge.
C. Pos ition t he shingle ups ide-down, so the tabs are
on the chalk line and t he half-tab overhangs the
gable drip edge by %", FCisten the shingle with
Fouf 2d roofi ng nails, about 3V2" up from the
bottom edge: drive one below each tab, one 2" in
from the ga bl e edge, and one 1 II from t he ins ide
edge. Dri ve t he nails straight and set the heads
just Aush to avoid tearing the s hingle.
D. Use fu ll shi ngles for t he rema inder of t he course,
pbcing them ups ide dO\.vn and butting thei r edges
toget her. Trim the last shingle so it overhangs the
gable edge by %,".
A. Instal l the first course of s hi ngles, start ing with a
full shi ngle. Pos it ion the tubs dovm a nd align the
shingle edges v" ith those in the starter course. Dri ve
fo ur nail s into each shingle: one %" above each tab,
and one I II in from each end, at the same level.
Trim the last shingle to match the starter course.
B. Snap a c ha lk li ne on the bui lding paper, 17" up
from t he bottom edge of the nrst course; this will
result in a 5" exposure for eac h course. C heck
your shingle dimensions and adjust measurements
as necessary.
C. Begi n t he second course wit h a fu ll shingle, but
overha ng the end of t he nrst course by Y2 of a
tab. Begin the third course by overhanging a full
tab, t hen I y, tabs for the fourth course . Start
the nft h course wit h a fu ll s hi ngle aligned with
the nrst course, to repeat the staggered pattern.
Snap a c ha lk li ne for each course, maintai ning
Divide the shingles into thirds, then trim the corners to
create the shingle caps (Inset). Install the caps at the ridge.
a 5" exposure. Aft e r every few courses, measure
from t he ridge to t he shingle edges to make sure
t he shi ngles are ru nning paralle l to the ridge. If
necessary, m<J ke slight adj ustments wi th eac h
course un t il the shi ngles a re p<Jr<:l ll el to t he ridge.
D. Tri m the top course of shingles at t he ridge. If
you are worki ng on a hi p roof (gazebo), trim t he
shi ngles at each hip ri dge .
E. Repeat the procedure to s hingle t he re maini ng
s ide (s) of the roof. Overlap t he ridge wi th the top
course of shi ngles and nail them to the ot he r roof
s ide; do not overl<:lp more th<:ln 5". O n a hip roof,
tri m the shi ngles along the hip ridge.
A. Cut ridge caps from standard shingle tabs: taper
eac h tab alo ng the side edges, starting from the
top of the slots a nd cutt ing up to the top edge.
C ut t hree caps from each shingle- you' ll need
one cap for every 5" of ridge.
B. Snap a chalk line across t he shingles, 6" from the
ridge. Starting at t he gable ends (for a gable roof)
or the bottom edge (for a hi p roof), instal l t he
caps by bending t he m over t he ridge a nd aligni ng
one side edge wi th t he chalk li ne. Fasten eac h
cap with one nai l on each roof side, 5Y/, from the
An ished (exposed) edge a nd I" from the side edge.
J'vb inta in a 5" expos ure for each shi ngle. Fasten
t he last shi ngle wi t h a nail at each corner, then
cover t he nail heads with roon ng ce ment.
C . Trim the ove rhanging shingles along t he gable
ends: Snap chalk lines along the gable ends, %"
from t he dri p edges. Trim the shingles at the lines.
Cover a ny exposed nails wit h rooll ng cement.
BlIihiillg Basics 57
I Cedar Shingles
Cedar sh ingles come in 161!, IS
, and 24" lengt hs
and in random widths , ge nera ll y bet ween 3
10" wide. The exposure of the shingles depends
on the slope of the roof and the length and guality
of the shingles (c heck wit h the manufacturer),
Because they"re sold in a few different gr<:tdes,
make Slife the shingles you get arc good enough to
be used as roofi ng. Also, be a\va re that ga lva ni zed
nails Ill ay cause some stai ni ng or streaki ng on the
shingles; if you can' t acce pt t hat, usc a luminum or
stainless-steel nails.
The project s hmvn here uses 18" shingles with
a 5
/ / exposure installed on a gab le roof. At the
ridge , t he s hingles are cove red vvit h 3 1 x cedm
Installing Roof Vents
Roof vents used in conjunction with soffit vents can help
keep the air In your shed cooler and cleaner. Vents are rated
by square inches of ventilation area; most sheds need only
two roof vents and two to four soffit vents.
ridge ca p, which is eas ier to insta ll than ca p
s hingl es . If you want to s hingle a h ip roof, cons ult
a professional.
Tools & Materials
Utility knife
Chalk line
Circu lar saw
Table saw
Cedar shi ngles
2 X 4 lumber
I Yt" and 2"
roofing nai ls
6d ga lvanized nails
I x 4 and I x 6 cedar
Caul k/Sealant
Install roof vents centered between two rafters, about
16" to 24" from the ridge board. Cut a hole through the
roof sheathing, following the manufacturer's instructions
(photo, fa r left) .
After applying building paper (page 55), center the
vent over the hole, and trace around Its base flange.
Install shingles to a point at least 2" Inside the bottom
of the outline- don't cover the hole.
Apply roofing cement to the underside of the base
flange, then Install the vent over the shingles, using
rubber-gasket roofing nails driven into all of the flange sides.
Shingle over the Side and top vent flanges, leaving
the bottom flange exposed; do not nail through the flanges
with the shingle nails (photo, left).
I How to Install Cedar Shingle Roofing
A. Apply building paper to the entire roof,
overhanging the eaves by %" (see page 55).
B. Posit ion the first s hingl e in the sta rter course so it
overha ngs the ga ble edge by J " and the eave edge
by I Y," . Tack or clamp a 2 X 4 spacer to the fascia
to hel p set the overhang. Make sure the butt
(thick) end of the shingle is pointing down. Fasten
the shingJe with two 1 W' roofing nails, driven 4
up from the butt end a nd at least I" from the s ide
edges. Dri ve the nails just flu sh with the surface-
counte rsinking creates a cavity that collects \vater.
C. Install the remaining shingles in the starter course,
mainta ining a W' to %" gap betwee n shingles. If
necessary, trim the last shingle to width.
A. Set the first shingle in the first course so its butt
and outside edges are fius h \,vith the shingles in
the starter course and it overlaps the shingle gap
belm'v by I Y2 1! . Fasten the shingle I to 21! above
the exposure line and I" from the side edges.
B. Insta ll the re main ing s hingles in t he flrst course,
ma inta ining a Yt ll to %" gap between shingles.
C. SnCl p a c ha lk li ne across the s hingles Cit t he
exposure line (SY/ in this exa mple). Install the
second course, ali gni ng the butt e nds \vit h t he
c halk line. Make sure shi ngle gaps are offset wit h
the gaps in the first course by I Y211 .
D. Insta ll the re maini ng courses, usi ng c ha lk lines
to se t the exposure. Measu re from the ridge
periodi cally to ma ke sure the courses are para ll e l
to the ridge. Offset t he shi ngle ga ps by I Vi' with
t he gCl ps in the preceding three courses- that is,
any ga ps that are Cll igned must be four courses
apart. Add courses until t he top (thi n) e nds of the
shi ngles are wit hi n a fe\",! inches of the ridge.
E. Shingle the oppos ite side of the roof.
A. Cut a strip of bu ilding pape r to 24" wide a nd as
long as the ridge. Fold the pape r in ha lf and lay it
Install the starter row of shingles, overhanging the gable
end by %" and the eave by 1 W'.
Cover the ridge with 24" of building paper, then a course of
trimmed shingles. Repeat with 12" of paper and shingles.
over the ridge so it overlaps the shi ngles on bot h
sides of the roof; tac k it in place with stapl es.
B. Install another course of shi ngles on eac h s ide,
t rimming the top edges so t hey a re flush with the
ridge. C ut Cl nother str ip of bui lding pape r 12"
wide , fold it, a nd lay it ove r t hese shingles.
C. Install t he flnCl I course on each s ide. t rimming the
ends flus h with the ridge. Na il the s hingles about
2Y2" from t he ridge.
A. Find t he angle of the ridge usi ng a T- beve l a nd
two scraps of I x boa rd: pos ition t he boa rds along
the ridge with the ir edges butted togethe r. Set the
T-beve l to match the a ngle.
B. Transfe r the angle to a tabl e saw or c ircular saw
and rip test pieces of I x. Test-fit the pi eces on
the ridge, and adjust the angles as needed.
C. Cut t he I x 6 a nd I X 4 ca p boards to run the
le ngt h of the ridge. Join the boards with sealant
and 6d ga lva ni zed box na il s. Attac h the cap to the
ridge wit h 2" rooflng na il s driven every 12".
Install the first course of shingles on top of the starter
course, offsetting the shingle gaps 1%" between the courses.
use a T-bevel and scrap boards to filld the ridge angles,
then cut the 1 x 4 and 1 x 6 for the ridge cap.
BlIihiillg Basics 59
I Metal Roofing
Metal roofing pane ls typica ll y are ava il able in
3-ft .-widc panels , with most styles using some form
of standing seam design, which adds strength and
provides means for joining sheets. You can buy the
roollng through metal roofing suppli ers and at home
cente rs, but the forrner typi call y offer more color
opt ions, a nd they' ll c ustom-cut the pa ne ls to flr
your project. Most manufacturers suppl y fubber-
washered na ils or screws for a \,vatertight seal-use t he
recommended fasteners to prevent premature rusting
due to galvani c act ion (caused by contact bctv,1ccn
dissimilar metals).
Insta ll meta l roofi ng over 1 x 4 or 2 x 4 pur lins
Il Cli led perpendi cular to the rafters at J 2" to 24" on
cente r- chec k "'.l it h t he rnanufct ct urer for purli n
I How to Install Metal Roofing
A. lVIark the purlin layout on t he top edges of the
the rafters , and snap a c halk line for eac h row.
Fasten 2 x 4 purl ins to the rafters wi th 16d
commo n na ils ; LI se Sd na ils for I x 4s. j\/lake sure
spacing a nd load req uirements. Some roof panel s
require purlins with matching profiles. At the gabl e
ends, add blocking hetween the purlins to provide a
nai ling surface for t he end panels and the dri p edge.
Tools & Materials
Chalk line
Circu lar saw
I x 4 or
16d common nails
lVIeta l roofing pane ls
a nd preformed
ridge cap,
2 x 4 lumber \vit h fasteners
the upper-most purlins vvi ll support the roollng
ridge cap.
B. O n the gabl e e nds, cut bl ocking to Ilt between
the purlins , and install it so t he outs ide edges arc
flu sh with the outer faces of the oute r rafte rs .
Install the purlins across the rafters,
then add blocking at the gable ends.
A. Set the first roof panel across the purl ins so t he
finished side edge overha ngs the gable-end fascia
by 2" and the bottom end over hangs the eave by
, Fasten the pa nel with self-tapping sc rews or
roofing na ils \vith rubber w<Js hers, foll owing the
manufacture r' s direc tions for spac ing.
B. Insta ll the suhsequent panels, ove rlapping eac h
panel according to the manufacturer's direct ions .
C. liotate the final panel 180' from t he others, so
the finished side edge is at the gable end. Overlap
t he preceding panel by as much as necessa ry so
t he fln ished edge overhangs the gable edge by 2",
Fasten the fina l panel.
A. Center the preformed ridge cap over the peak
$0 it overlaps the roofing panels. Make sure the
cap overha ngs the gable ends equally on bot h
sides. Note: Some products include ridge-cap
sealing strips .
B. Fasten the ridge cap to the top purlins.
Install the panels to the purl ins using
pole barn screws or other rubber-washer,
self-tapping screws.
Add the ridge cap at the roof peak,
covering the panels on both roof sides.
------ -
BlIihiillg Basics 61
I Siding & Trim
he s iding and exterior t rim not only provide an
attract ive skin for your building, t hey protect t he
st ruct ure from the weat he r. It's important to keep this
funct ion in mind as you install the m: wa tch for areas
\vhere \vate r ca n pool or tri c kJ e in, and make sure all
unfi ni shed edges and seams are covered or sealed
wit h cau lk.
Many siding manufact urers recommend staining or
priming t he back side of the siding (called backpri ming)
before insta lling it , which can help prevent the material
from cupping or warping. Since condi t ions V3'Y by
region, ask you r suppl ier about the best treat ment for
you r siding, or contact the manufact urer.
The na il s YOLI lise a re another important
conside ration. All na il s used out doors must be
corros ion- resistant, such as galvan ized, a lu mi num,
or stainless steel na il s. Ga lvanized a re the c heapest
but ca n cause sta ining on unpai nted cedar;
al uminum wi ll s ta in cedar less than galvan ized, but
t he fasteners can he di ffi cult to dr ive;
steel na il s a re expe ns ive bu t are s trong and pre tty
muc h gua ranteed to not stain cedar or eve r corrode .
or si di ng nails offer t he grea test
holdi ng powe r.
App lya protective fin ish- sta in, pa int, or
vClfni sh- to yo ur si d ing <:I nd tr im <:IS soon as possible
afte r insta lling t he m. products, although
often factory-pri med , a re especi<:llly s uscepti bl e to
\vater damage where hammer blows, na il holes, and
Cll ts have marred the protect ive fi ni sh .
wood siding is still the standard for building sheds, but as these photos show, not all wood siding looks alike.
I Horizontal Siding
Common types of hori zo ntal s iding include cl apboard
(a lso called beve l or lap), whi c h is ins tall ed to overlap
the piece be low it, and Dolly Varden, shiplap, a nd
drop styles, whi ch have grooved Imver edges that
receive the top edge of the bomd beneath. All types
come in <1 vmiety of sol id woods, a nd lap siding is a lso
ava ilable in faux-text ured hardbourd- an inexpensive
alternative to solid wood.
I nsta ll horizonta l siding over pl ywood \.va ll
sheathing and 151/ building pape r. For most
appli cati ons, it's easiest to install the exte ri or trim first
then install the s iding to fit between t he tri m boards.
This mea ns that the doors and windows wi ll be in
place, too.
T he sidi ng shown in thi s project is a hardboard lap
siding install ed \vith a 6" exposure. The boards have
been primed on hot h sides, whi ch protects the bac k
side from moist ure and saves t ime whe n painting the
front s ide. \Nhichever siding you choose, check vvit h
t he man ufacturer regarding backpri ming and moisture
protecti on. Determine the overlap before starti ng. You
can fol low the manufactu re r' s minimum (typica ll y l it),
or lise more overlap so that the siding joints fal l even ly
at openings or [l Iang the tops of the \va ll s.
Tools & Materials
C ircular saw
Ji gsaw
Staple r
Utility knife
C ha lk line
12" CDX pl ywood
6d box na il s
15# building paper
8d siding nails
I How to Install Horizontal Siding
A. Insta ll W' plywood sheat hing (*t min . for 16"
a.c. ; V:!" for 24" O.C.), starting at one corner of
the buil di ng. Hold the side edge flush with the
corner framing and the bottom edge flush \,vith
the bottom of the Aoor frame. Make sure the
othe r side edge breaks on the center of a wa ll
st ud. The top edge should cove r at least one of the
wa ll plates. Nail the sheathing with 6d box na il s,
driven every 6" alo ng the edges and] 2" in the
field of t he sheet.
B. Install the remaining sheets, leaving a ygll ga p
between sheets. Overlap the sheathing at the
corne rs. Sheat h over windm,v and door openings ,
then cut out the ope nings v.,Ii th a jigsaw or
rec iprocating saw.
C. Apply 151/ bui lding paper in horizonta l strips over
the e ntire wa ll surface, usi ng staples driven about
every 1211. Overlap horizontal joints by 2", vertical
joints by 6
, and corners by 1211. Hold or tr im t he
paper Aus h with the bottom of the Aoor frame.
\Nrap door a nd \,vindow openi ngs wit h paper.
D. Insta ll a ll exterior t rim, holding t he corner a nd
door t rim %" be\mA,T t he floor framing. Insta ll
flas hi ng over exposed doors a nd windovvs .
Install plywood sheathing over the entire frame, then staple
building paper over the sheathing.
BlIihiillg Basics 63
A. Cut 1 !I-wide starter strips of siding so there's
e nough to run t he le ngt h of all of the wa ll s. If the
siding is beveled , cut: only from the top edge of
each piece, or lise stri ps of plywood t hat match
the thi ckness of the siding's top edge.
B. Pos ition t he starter strip along the bottom edge of
the sheathing and faste n i t to the fra ming with 8d
siding na il s .
C. Snap a c ha lk line above the bottom edge of the
shea thing at a height equ<:I l to t he width of the
siding minus -XI! , lVl ark the centers of the wa ll
studs onto the bui lding paper to fac ilitate nail ing.
D. Cut the first course of si ding to fit bet:\vee n the
trim boa rds; make it snug but not so ti ght that
you have to force the siding into place. Fasten
the siding wit h one 8d siding nai l driven at each
stud location, about I Y\" from the bottom edge. If
YOLI need two boards to span the "vall , cente r the
inside ends over a stud, leaving a Ys" gap between
them; drive two nails at each end.
Nail a starter strip along the edge of the sheathing,
then snap a chalk line and install the first row of siding.
A. Using the exposure dimension, measure from the
top edge of the first course and s nap a chalk line.
Make sure the line is level; if it's not level, make
sli ght adj ustments over the next few courses.
B. Install the next course, a ligni ng the top edge
with the chalk li ne. Na il the siding just above the
top edge of the course below, dri ving one nail at
eac h stud. If the course has tvw boards, make
sure the joint falls one or two st uds away from
the joint in the first course (stagger the joints for
two more courses, then repeat the patte rn Cit the
original stud).
C. Snap c ha lk lines for the remaining courses, using
t he reveal dimens ion, and check the lines for
leve l. Install the re maining courses . Ma rk angled
cuts using a pattern made from sc rap siding.
D. Afte r completing one wa ll , use a leve l to tra nsfer
t he s iding layout onto the adjacent wa ll , so that
the courses are ali gned horizontally.
E. When all of t he siding is install ed, caulk all joints
whe re siding meets trim or othe r pi eces of siding.
Drive siding nails into the studs, just above the preceding
course (inset). Caulk all end joints after the Installation.
I Plywood Siding
Plywood siding is the least expensive and easiest to
insta ll of a ll the standard exterior Anis hes . It's avai lable
in 4 x 8-ft., 9-ft., and l O-ft. sheets; %", WI, or %"
thicknesses; and in several styles, including st ri ated,
rough sawn, channel groove, and board-&-batten. The
most common style, Text ure J - J] (s hown here), is
made to resembl e vert ical bomd siding <Jnd typicully has
shi p-lap edges that form \.veather-proof vertical seams.
Another advantage of plywood siding is that t he
panel s serve as bracing for framed wa ll s, e li minat ing
the need for s heat hing. Plywood siding is cxtcri or-
grade, but the layered edges must be protected from
moisture. For types with unmill ed (square) edges,
I How to Install Plywood Siding
A. Snap a e ha lk li ne for the top edges of t he siding,
account ing for the overhang at t he bottom edge:
for ".,rood floors, overhang t he bottom of t he floor
frame by %I! to I "; for slabs, overhang t he top of
the slab by I".
B. Posit ion the Ilrst sheet- vertically- at LI corne r so
one s ide edge is fl ush with the corner fra ming LI nd
the ot her hreaks on t he center of a stud; hold the
top edge on the chalk line. Check wit h a level to
make sure the sheet is plumb, then fasten it with
Sd galvanized Ilnish nails, driven every 6" along t he
perimeter and every 12" in t he fie ld of t he sheet.
C. Insta ll the remaining s heets, c hecking eac h one
for pl umb a nd leaving a W' gap bet\veen sheets.
( For ship- lap edges, first fit the sheets t ight, then
drav,l a pencil line a long the upper sheet's edge.
Sl ide over the upper sheet W' , using the mark as
Install the plywood siding vertically. Plumb each sheet
and fasten it to the framing with 6d nails.
caulk the gap at vertica l seams or install a 1 x 2 batten
strip over t he joint. All horizontal joints must have
metal Z-fl as hing for moisture protection.
Tools & Materials
Chalk line
C ircu lar saw
Plywood siding
Sd galvanized finis h nails
6d galvanized box nail s
Galva nized or aluminum
Z-fb shi ng
a gauge.) At t he joi nts, do not na il t hrough both
sheets with one nail. Overlap the sheets at the
corners, if desi red (they \,vi ll be covered by trim,
in any case). Apply sid ing over door and windO\v
openings, but do not nai l into the headers if YOLI
will install flas hi ng (sec page 73) . If you start wit h
a trimmed sheet, place t he cut edge at the corner.
A. Install Z-flas hing along the top edge of the siding,
using 6d galvanized box nail s .
B. Install the upper row of siding, leaving a y ~ gap
above t he flas hing.
C. Cut out t he door a nd window openings \ ...rith a
circular saw, jigsa\v, or rec iprocat ing saw.
D. Install t rim over the flas hed joints and at the
bui lding corners.
Add galvanized metal flashing between rows of siding to
prevent water from entering the seam.
BlIihiillg Basics 65
I Tongue & Groove Vertical Siding
Solid-wood, tongue-a nd-groove boa rd siding has a n
attract ive, natural look that is we ll -su ited for outdoor
bui ldings. Sta ndard sizes of si ding are I x 4, I x 6,
and I x 8, avai lable in cedar, reelwood, pine, and other
wood s pecies. The type shovvn in thi s project is cedar
1 X 8 siding with V-grooves. Buy your siding long
enough to rUIl the full height of the building, because
horizontal joints are di fficu lt to make and they don't
ahvays look good.
Note: Unlike siding, tongue-and-groove
boards do not provide adequate bracing for the wall
structure. Unless you use plywood sheathing as baching
for tonglle-and-groove siding, you must install} X 4 or
J x 6 "let-in" bracing.
Siding that is 6" wide ( nomi ned dimens ion)
or na rrowe r can be blindnail e d \\l ith a ngled na il s
dri ven at the base of the tongue onl y, so the
heads are hidden by t he groove of the next pi ece
(photo, ri ght top); 8
or wide r s id ing s hould be
face nailed with nvo nail s at each support (p hoto,
right bottom).
If your building is st ic k-fra med, add 2 x 4
bl oc king bet\,veen the studs at 24" on cente r to
support the Siding.
Tools & Materials
Circular saw
Ch"lk line
2 x 4 blocking
16d nail s
8d siding nail s or
6d ga lva nized fini sh na il s
I How to Install Vertical Tongue & Groove Siding
Snap chalk lines at 24" intervals to
guide the blocking placement. Endnail the
blocking between the studs.
A. Snap horizonta l c hal k lines across t he studs, 24"
apart , measur ing from t he fl oor.
B. Cut 2 x 4 blocks to fi t between the studs.
Endnai l the bloc ks to the studs wit h 16d na ils.
Pos it ion alternate blocks below t he chalk li ne to
fac ilita te nail ing.
A. If you arc blindna ili ng t he s iding, position the
fi rst piece wit h the grooved edge fl us h wit h t he
corner framing; if you're face nai li ng, use e ither
edge. Overhang t he bottom of the board V/
I II below the bottom of t he fl oor frami ng (for
wood Aoors) or I" below t he top of the slab (for
concrete fl oors).
B. Hold a level along the leading edge to make sure
t he board is plumb, t hen fasten the boa rd a long
t he outs ide edge, every ] 6
, For blind na ili ng,
dri ve a 6d ga lva ni zed fi ni sh nail into each support
<llong the tongue; for facenaii i ng, drive t\\' O 8c1
siding na il s at each support, 1 Y211 to 211 from t he
side edges.
C. Install the next boa rd, fitting toget her the
tongue and-groove joi nt . Nail at each support.
D. Ins tall the remai ning boards. C heck every th ird
or fou rth board wit h t he level to ma ke sure it's
plumb. Notch boards to fit fl ush around window
and door openings; do not na il into t he headers if
you plan to insta ll flashing (see page 73). To sta rt
<1 wall with <1 t rimmed boa rd, place the cut edge <1t
t he corne r.
Plumb every third or fourth board with a level, making minor adjustments to the Joints, if necessary.
BlIihiillg Basics 67
I Installing Trim
Trim includes t he boards that conceal building
scams, cover gaps around wi ndow and door frames,
finish corners, a nd perform other decorative
and weatherproofi ng functions. For s heds and
olltbuildings, simpl e trim det<Jii s with I x 3, I X 4, or
j X 6 cedar boards work we ll.
The type of siding YOLl li se will determine when to
install the t ri m. For horizonta l siding, install the trim
first; for most other types, install the trim over t he
siding. If the trim is insta lled before the siding, make
sure it's level and plumb- otherwise, you'll have to cut
custom angles on t he s iding e nds.
T he simpl est method for installing t ri m is to use
butt joints. A sli ghtl y fan cie r alternati ve is to miter
them. Trim joint s are most not icea bl e on v,rindO\v
Window trim with butt JOints
Window trim with miter joints
and door tr im (see photos, belovv), but you ca n miter
corne r trim, too.
To install window and door tr im with butt joints,
add the head trim first , then cut t he t\VO side pieces
to fit. Insta ll mitered trim pi eces on oppos ing sides,
(that is, top and bottom, then s ides, or vice versa).
Leave a ~ reveal for all window and door t rim. T hi s
adds interest and makes bowed jambs less noticeable.
Exposed doors and windows must have Aashing above
t he trim.
To install corne r trim, cut tv.'O pieces to length,
t hen nail them together at a right angle, using 6d or 8d
ga lvanized box nails or nnish nails. Set the trim on the
corne r, plumb it \vit h a level, and nail it to the framing
with 8d ga lva ni zed box or fin ish na ils.
Nail corner trim pieces together before installing them.
Finishing Roof Overhangs
A common method for finishing the underside of a roof
overhang is to install soffit panels that enclose the rafter
ends. Soffits can be attached directly to the rafters or
to horizontal blocking that extends back to the wall. An
alternative to sofflttlng IS leaving the rafter ends exposed.
Wi th this application, the wall siding is notched to fit
around the rafters.
A roof overhang should also include means for
ventilating the building. With soffits, this can be achieved
with soffit vents- metal grates (available in rectangular,
plug, and strip styles) that cover holes cut into the soffit
panels. Exposed overhangs are by nature ventilated but
should have bug screen to seal the gaps between the
walls and the roof sheathing. To increase ventilation, you
can also install roof vents (see page 58).
BlIihiillg Basics 69
I Doors & Windows
hed doors a nd windows can be e ither prehung
(factory-bui lt ) or home made. The shed projects in
this book include plans for maki ng your ovm doors and
v\rindO\vs . They're simple designs Ll sing bas ic materi als
and can be built in an hour or two.
I prehung Doors & Windows
Prchung door and window units come in standard sizes,
or they can be ordered in custom sizes, though at a higher
price. Before framing the \valls of your shed, select a door
or window and confirm its exact dimens ions before sizi ng
the rough openi ngs; be sure to lISC the outer dimensions
of the unit's frame, not those of the door or window itself.
Most exterior doors have preattac hed tr im, call ed
brick molding, on the outs ides of t he jambs. You can
remove thi s if you want to add you r own trim.
To keep wate r out, insta ll flashing above the
trim of any doors or windows that are exposed- that
is, without a roof overhang above. If security is a
concern, install a deadbol t for a pre-hung door or a
hasp latch and padl ock for a homemade door.
Tools & Materials ~
Nail set
Door or window unit
Tapered cedar s hims
Construction adhesive
16d galva ni zed cas ing
nails (door) or
1 %" roofing nail s
I How to Install a prehung Window
I' I ~
Add pairs of tapered shims under the
side window jambs and under the center
of the sill.
Note: Window installations vary by product and
tIIanufacturer; follow the specific instmctiolls provided for
your window, including the steps fvr prepari-Hg th.e rough
opening, shilll.ming, flashing, etc. Shown here are the basic
steps for installing a utility window with a 11ailingfiange.
A. Set t he window into the rough opening and
center it between the sides. Place pa irs of
tapered shims di rectly be neat h the side jambs
and at the cen ter of t he sill; position the shims
so the tape red ends are opposed to form a
flat surface.
B. From outside, drive one I %" roofing na il
t hrough t he naili ng fl ange at one of the lower
corners of the wi ndow, but do not drive t he
na il completely.
A. Place a level across the si ll or top of the jamb,
and adjust t he shi ms unti l the \,vindow is
pcrfcc tly level.
B. Dri ve one nail through t he nailing fl ange at
eac h corner of the window. Check t he windm,v
operation to make sure it's smooth, t hen complete
t he nailing, foll owing the manufacturer's
instructions for spacing.
C. If the manufacturer recommends leaving the shims
in place, tri m the shims wit h a uti lity knife, then
glue them in place with construction adhes ive.
Level the window, then fasten the unit In place with roofing nails driven through the nail ing flange on the exterior.
BlIihiillg Basics 71
I How to Install a prehung Door
A. Cut out t he bottom p late ins ide the rough
open ing, using a ha ndsaw. Hemove any
braci ng or nails installed to protec t t he doo r
dur i ng sh i ppi ng.
B. Set the door into t he openi ng and center it
hetween the sides. Pus h t he bri c k mol di ng Rat
against the shea thing or siding; if t he re's no
molding, position t he outs ide edge of t he jamb
Rus h with the siding or s heat hi ng. Insert pai rs of
tapered s hi ms (wit h t he tapered ends opposed to
form a flat surface) between the hi nge jamb and
the framing. Add shims at the top and bottom and
at each hinge locati on.
C. Start ing wit h t he top shims, c heck the hi nge jamb
with a level to make sure it's plumb, and adjust
the shims as needed. Na il through the jamb and
shims and into the framing with one 16d cas ing
nai l. Repeat at the remaini ng shi m locat ions.
Plumb the door jamb, working from the top down. Fasten
through the jamb and each shim pair with a casing nail.
A. Standing inside t he s hed, close the door, a nd
examine the gap between the door ancl latc h jamb.
Starting at t he top of t he latc h jamb, insta ll shi ms
between t he jamb and the fru ming. C heck the gap
to make Slife you' re not bowing the jamb. Fasten
t he jamb and shims with one 16d casing nai l.
B. Shi m and faste n t he latc h jamb at four more
locat ions, level wit h t he hinge-side shi ms, making
sure t he gap along the door remains consiste nt.
C. Shim a nd fasten t he head jamb at two locations .
For added support, you can replace one sc rew on
each hinge "',l ith a 3Y21! screw, hut be careful not to
overti ghten them and pull the fra me out of square.
D. Nai l t hrough the bri ck molding and into t he
sheathi ng (or siding) and framing wi th 16d casing
nails driven every 16",
E. Cut off the shims fl us h wit h the fra ming, using a
ut ility knife. Set all nails vvit h a nai l set.
Shim the latch jamb, uSing the gap between the door and
the jamb as a gauge. Make sure the gap is consistent.
I Homemade Doors & Windows
To make your O\vn door or wi ndo"v, build a nd install
the frame, measu re the opening, then build a nd install
the door to fit (or add the glass). Use I x lumber for
the frame, ripping it to \vi dth so it spa ns the wa ll
section of the rough opening.
You can make a homemade door with almos t any
rigid boctrd: siding, plywood, lumber, etc. Use the
door plans provided in the s hed project or create your
own design.
For windows, you can usc standard plate glass,
tempered safety glass, Plcxiglass 11\1, or super-tough Y. "
polycarbonate glazing (used in public structures such
as bus stop shelters).
Insta lling a homemade door or window fmllle
is simil ar to instCllling a prehung door: center t he
frame in the rough opening, shim between the
jambs and f rami ng, plumb and level the frame, and
fasten it th rough the jamb and shims . Because a
home made door frame has no threshold to secure t he
bottom ends of t he side jambs, instal l a temporary
Ix spreader across the jambs to keep t he frame square
during install ation.
To install a homemade door, moun t the hinges to
the door, the n set t he door in t he frame a nd hold it
aga inst the stops. Insert shi ms undernea th the door
and bet\veen the door and latc h jamb to set even
gaps around the door. i\llount the hi nges to the wall
with screws.
Flashing Above Doors & Windows
Install metal flashing where siding meets trim to help
divert water away from doors, windows, and their frames. 1
When the Siding IS installed after the trim:
Nail the flashing to the sheathing so It laps over the
trim, then install the siding over the vertical flange of
the flashing.
When the Siding IS installed before the trim:
Set the trim in place above the door or window,
then trace along the top edge and ends of the trim
(photo 11.
Remove the trim and cut out the Siding along the
traced lines.
Slip the flashing underneath the siding and fasten it
wi th nails driven through the siding (complete the
siding nailing).
Reinstall the cut-out siding below the flashing- to
serve as backing- then install the trim (photo 21.
Trace along the trim to mark the cutting lines for
removing the Siding.
Add the flashing, then install the siding cutout and the trim.
BlIihiillg Basics 73
I Ramps, Steps & Decks
ost of the sheds in this book wit h framed wood
floors have a finished floor height that sits at
least 10" above the ground. This m<Jkes for a fa irly ta ll
step up to the shed. On a sloping site, t he approach
to the shed may be considerably lower t han the floor.
I Simple Ramp
A basic, sturdy ramp is a great convenience for moving
heavy equipme nt in and out of your shed. Using the
simple design shovm here, YOLI can make the slope
of the ramp as gentle or as steep as YOLI like (vlit hi n
reason). Of course, the gentler t he slope, t he easier i t
is roll things up the ramp. Construct your ramp from
pressure-trea ted lumber rated for "grou nd contace" If
des ired, set the bottom end of the ramp on a bed of
compacted gravel for added stability.
But not to worry- you can quickly buil d a custom
ramp or set: of steps for safe, easy access. As an
alternat ive, YOLI mi ght <Jdd a large platfor m that serves
as bot h a step a nd a su n porc h.
Tools & Materials
Framing square
2 X 4 pressurc-
treated lumber
2 x 6 pressure-
treated lumber
3" corrosion-
resistant scre\vs
I How to Build a Shed Ramp
A. Set a board onto the shed floor in front of the door
opening \,vit h its end on the ground. Experi ment
with different placements until you flnd the best
slope for your needs.
B. lVlark vvhere the end of the bOClrd meets t he
ground. iVleasure in toward t he shed about 6
make another mark- this represents the end of
the ramp.
A. Drmva leve l line onto the shed's Aoar frame 4%"
be low the shed's floor surface.
8 . Cut a 2 X 4 ledger board to length so it equa ls t he
total width of the ramp. Note: The ramp sllOuld be
at least as wide as the door opening.
C. Position t he ledger on t he level l ine so it is
cente red from side to side underneath the door.
Place a board between the ground and the shed floor to find the desired ramp slope.
BlIihiillg Basics 75
A. To mark t he angles for t he stri nger cuts, plot the
layout of the ramp onto a sheet of plywood (or the
shed floor). Fi rst, use a framing square to make
two perpendicular lines represent ing the front: of
the shed and t he ground. Measure the height of
the shed fl oor, t hen subt ract I %", Transfer thi s
dimension to one of the layoll t lines. j\/!easure from
the shed to the mark on the ground,
then transfer this dimension to t he other layout linc.
B. Place a 2 X 6 stringer bO<:l rd o nto the layout lines
so its top edge meets the t\\'o I1lClrks. Use the
perpe ndicular lines to mark the angled end cuts
on t he stri nger. iVlake the cuts.
C. Cut t he upper end of the stringer to accept t he
ledge r by making a I WI- deep notc h starti ng about
2%" down from the top edge. T he notch should be
parall el to t he end of t he stringer.
Mark a level line 4%" below the floor to
locate the top edge of the ledger.
use perpendicular layout lines to mark
the angled end cuts on the first stringer.
A. Test-fit the first stringer on the ledger. Make s ure
the 2 x 6 decking will not extend above t he shed
floor when installed. Make adjustments to the
stringer cuts CIS needed.
B. Use the first stringer as a templ ate to ma rk the
cuts on the remaining stringers . You'll need one
stringer for each end and every 121! to 16" in
between . Cut the remaining st ri ngers.
C. Fasten the stringers to the ledger and the shed's
floor fra me lIsing 3" screws. The end st ri ngers
should be flus h wit h t he ends of the ledger.
D. Fasten the ledger to the floor framing wit h 3"
corros ion-resistant sc rews.
A. Cut 2 x 6 decking boards to equal the width of
the ramp.
B. IVlake sure the stringers are perpendicular to the
shed, and then fasten the decking boards to the
st ringers wit h 3
sc rews. Leave a Y4" gap between
boa rds to promote drainClge a nd add trac tion on
t he ramp surface. Note: If the top or bottom board
will be narrower dwn 2", plan the decking layout so
the first and last boards are roughly the sallie width.
C. If desi red, beve l the front edge of the board at t he
bottorn of the ramp to ease the transition.
Make sure the first stringer fits well,
then use it to mark the remaining stringers
for cutting.
Fasten the decking to the stringers With
3" screws to complete the ramp.
BlIihiillg Basics 77
I Traditional Stairs
A slll ail set of fra med wooden stairs is usua lly cull ed
for H,hen a shed fl oor stands at about 21 II or morc
above the ground (for Imver floors, you might prefer to
bu il d a couple of simple platfor ms for t h ree easy steps
into the shed; see p<Jge 82). But regardless of the floo r
height, notched-stringer stairs add a nice handmade,
buil t- in look to a n entrance. And it's fun to lea rn
the geometry and carpe ntry skill s behind tradi ti onal
stair bu ilding.
planni ng your project , bear in mind that
stairs in general arc strictly governed by bui lding
codes. Your local bUi ld ing depart ment may impose
spec ific design requ irements for your project, or t hey
may not get involved at all- just be Sli re to fi nd out. In
any case, here are some of t he standard req uirements
for stairs:
Mini mum tread dept h: 10"
iVlaximum riser height : (7W' is a good
standard height )
iVl inimum stair vvidth: 36" (make your staircase at
least a few inches \".' ider t ha n t he shed's door opening)
A ha ndra il is often req ui red for stairs wit h
more t han one riser, b ut t his may not apply fo r
storage sheds and t he like (check wi th the loca l
building departmen t )
Because stai rs arc easie r and safer to usc when
starting fro m a Aat la nding a rea, it's a good idea to
inc lude a level pad of compacted gravel at t he base of
you r stai rs. This also provides stctbil ity for the staircase
and el iminates t he potent ia l for a sl ippery, muddy
patch forming at the landi ng area.
Calculating Step Size ~
Properly built stairs have perfectly uniform treads (the part you step onl and risers (the vertical section of each step).
To determine the riser height, all you have to do IS divide the total rise- the distance from the ground to the shed
floor- and divide by the number of steps. If you end up with risers over 7%", add another step.
Determining the tread depth is up to you. However, because shallow steps are hard to climb and easy to triP on,
you should make your treads at least 10" deep, but preferably 11" or more. The tread depth multiplied by the number of
steps gives you the total run- how far the steps extend in front of the shed. When cutting the stringers, you cut the first
(bottom) riser shorter than the others to account for the thickness of the tread material.
Tools, Materials & Cutting List ~
Framing square
Circular 53\'V
Drill and bits
Compactible gravel
2 x 12 pressure-
treated lumber
Corrosion resistant
frami ng connectors
A. Use CI fra ming square to layout the Ilrst st ringer
onto a straight piece of 2 x 12 lumber. St arting at
one e nd of the board, position the square along
the board's top edge. Ali gn the 12" mark of the
bbde (long leg of t he sq uare) and the 6 W' mark
on the tongue (short leg of t he square ) "vith the
edge of t he boa rd. Trace along the edges of the
hlade and tongue. The tongue ma rk represents the
first riser.
B. Usc the square to exte nd t he blade marking ac ross
the full width of the board. Then, draw a parall el
line I" up from th is linc. The new li ne marks the
bottom cut for the st ringe r (t he 1 II offset accounts
for t he thickness of the tread material ).
C. Cont inue t he ste p layo ut , starting at the point
where the first ri ser meets the top of the board.
D. Mark the cutting line at the top e nd of the stringer
by extending the t hi rd (top) tread marking across
the full width of the board. From thi s line, make
a perpe ndi cular line 12" from the top riser: this is
\vhere you' ll cut the edge of t he stringer that: fits
against the shed.
] Od x I WI ga lvan ized nail s
3" gal va ni zed screvvs
2Y2" ga lv(:I ni zed screvvs
2 x 4 p r e s s u r e ~
treated lumber
2 16" lengths of
#4 ("' ''-dia. )
reba r
Y.. X 6 p r e s s u r ~
treated lumber
use a framing square to mark the treads, risers, and end
cuts on the stringer.
BlIihii llg Basics 79
I How to Build Notched-Stringer Stairs
A. Make the cuts on t he fi rst stringer using a circular
saw set to fu ll depth. Where treads and risers
intersect , cut just up to the li nes, then finis h t he
cuts wit h a handsmv.
B. Test-fit t he stringer on t he shed. The top tread
cut should be I" be low t he shed floor. Make
adjust ments to the stringer cuts as needed.
C. Usc the first stri nger as a te mplate to mark t he
remaining stringers. You ' ll need one stringer for
each end and every 12" to 16" in between. Cut
the remaining stringers.
A. Mark a level line onto t he shed's floor frame, I "
be low the finis hed floor surface. Onto t he level
line, mark t he center and outsides of the stairs.
Transfer the side markings to the ground lI s ing <1
squme and straightedge.
B. Cut 2x bloc king to carry t he bottom ends of the
st ringers. Fasten the blocking to t he ground llsi ng
16" pieces of 11 4 rcbar driven t hrough Y2 !1 holes.
For concrete or masonry, usc masonry screws or a
powder-ac tuated nai ler.
Cut out stringers With a circular saw,
and fi nish the corners of the cuts with
a handsaw
Mount the top ends of the stringers
to the shed using framing connectors
(shown). Anchor the bottom ends
to blocking.
C. Anc hor the tops of the stringers to t he floor frame
with corrosion-resistant framing connectors, using
] YZ "- Iong ] Od ga lvanized common nails. The tops
of the st ringers should be Aush wit h t he level line.
D. Anc hor the bottom ends of the stringers wit h nai ls
or screws.
A. Cut the treads to length from 'Y.l X 8"
pressure-trea ted decking lumber or two 'Y.l X 6"
boards ripped to 4" eac h. You can cut the treads
to fit fl us h wit h the outs ide stringers or overhang
them by 1/2" or so for a different look.
B. On e<:lc h step, position a full -vvidth tread at the front
v,rith the des ired overhang beyond the ri ser belov,r.
Fasten the tread to the stringers \vith 2Y2" galvanized
scre\\'s. Rip the second tread to size and faste n it
behind the first tread, leavi ng a ~ gap between the
boards. Insta ll the remaining tread boards.
C. If des ired, insta ll I x 6 ri se r boards so t he e nds are
flush with the outside stri nge rs (no overhang). Or,
you can omit the ri ser boards for open steps.
Option: Add riser boards to enclose each step.
Trim the rear tread boards as needed to fit behind the
front treads.
Option: Leave off riser boards for an open staircase.
BlIihiillg Basics 81
I Platforms for Steps & Decking
This simple platform is a popular opti on for s heds
because it's so casy to build and it provides a sturdy
step for comfortabl e access. You can use the sa me
basic design to make pla tfo rms of any size. A large
platform call become eln outdoor sitting area, while a
stack of smaller plut fo rms can create [.I set of steps t hat
are Clccessible from three directions. For stabili ty and
longevity, set your platforms on top of solid concrete
blocks-the same type used for block foundat ions.
Sec page 30 for morc information about buying
concrete block.
Tools & Materials
Compactible gravel
2x treated lumber
16d galvanized
common nail s
3" deck screws
I How to Build a Basic Platform
A. Cut two long side pieces from 2 x 6 lumber. These
should egual the total length of t he [Tame. C ut
two e nd pieces to fit between the s ide pieces. For
exa mpl e, ifyoUf platform will measure 24 X 36", cut
the sides at 36" and cut t he ends at 23". AJso cut
an intermedi ate support for every 16" in hetween:
make these the same length as the end pieces.
B. Fasten the e nd pieces between the sides v.l ith
pairs of 16d ga lvanized common nail s.
C. Fasten t he intermedi ate support at the center of
t he frame or at \ 6
interva ls.
A. Cut 2 X 6 decking boards to fit t hc long d imens ion
of the pl atform frame (you can also use Y; X 6
decki ng boa rds). Option: For C/ finished look, wt
the decking about J" too long so it overhangs the
frame structure.
B. lVleas ure the frame diagonall y fr om corner to
corner to make Slife i t is square.
C. Sta rting at the front edge of the frame, attach the
decki ng to the framing pieces with pairs of 3"
deck sc rews. Leave a Y/ gap between the boards.
Hip the last board to width so that it: over ha ngs
the front edge of the frame by I ".
D. Set t he pl atform in posi ti on on top of the block
foun(bti on. If des ired, fa sten the platform to t he
shed with 3" screws.
Assemble the frame pieces with pairs of 16d common nails.
Install the decking with screws, leaving a Y/ gap
between boards.
Option: Building Stepped Platforms
TO stack platforms for a
set of steps, build the upper
platform at least 20" narrower
and 10" shallower than the lower
platform. This creates a 10"-deep
step along the entire lower level.
Fasten the platforms together
with screws to keep the upper
platform in place.
BlIihiillg Basics 83
Shed Projects
t 's time to roll out your cords, buckle on your tool
belt , and start building. Each custom project features
a complete materials li st- li se thi s as a shopping list for
buying all the raw materials at your local home center
or lumberyard. From the detailed drawi ngs and how- to
instructions you'll learn \A/ hat length to cut each piece
and whe re it goes in the fini shed product. The ste p-
by-step instruct ions will walk you through the entire
sequence, highlighting important and unique details
along the way. If you choose to build a kit shed, kecp in
mind that the manufacturer of the kit you choose should
provide detailed instructions. Note: Ma/{illg sheds larger
thall shown llU1Y require review of code/design criteria for
11Imber sizes, especially floor joists, roof joists, (flld headers.
In This Chapter:
Clerestory Studio
Sunlight Garden Shed
Lean-to Tool Bin
Convenience Shed
Gambrel Garage
Simple Storage Shed
Gothic Playhouse
Timber-frame Shed
Service Shed
Metal & Wood Kit Sheds
Shed with Firewood Bin
I Clerestory Studio
hi s shed is made distinctive by its
three cle restory wi ndows on the front s ide. In
addi tion to their unique architectural effec t, c le restory
windows offe r some practical advantages over standard
windows. First, their posi tion at the top of the building
a llows sun light to spread downward over the inte ri or
space to maxi mi ze illumination. Most of t he light is
indirect, creat ing a soft glo,,\' wit hout the harsh glare
of direct sunli ght. Clerestori es also save on \va ll space
and offer morc pri vacy and sec uri ty than windO\.vs at
eye leve l. These characteri sti cs make this s hed design
a grea t c hoice for a bac kyard ofll cc, arti st's studio or
even a re mote spot for the mus ica ll y incl ined to get
together and jam.
As shown, the Clerestory Studio h" s a lOx 10-ft.
floorplan. It ca n be outfitted wit h doubl e doors th"t
open lip to a 5 ft. -wide opening, CI S seen he re. But jf
you don't need a door t hat large, you can pick lip a bout
2\12 ft. of additional (and highl y pri zed) wa ll space by
framing the opening for a 30" wi de door. The studio's
striking roofli nc is created by two s hed-style roof
planes, whi c h makes for decepti vel y casy construct ion .
The shed's wa ll s and floor follow standard
st ick-frame constructi on. For simplicity, you can fra me
t he squa re portions of the lower \,vall s first, then piece
in the fmming fo r the fOllr ura ke," Of a ngled, wedl
sections. To support the roof raft ers, t he clerestory wa ll
has tv/O large headers (beams) that run the fu]1 length
of the building. These a nd the door header arc all made
with standard 2x lumber and a V21! pty\'\Tood spacer.
You can increase the natura l light in you r studio-
and add some passive solar heating- by including
t he two optioned skylights. To prevent leaks, be sure
to ca refull y seal arollnd the glazing a nd the skylight
fr ame. Flashi ng around the frame will provide an ext ra
meas ure of protecti on.
Sf! ed Projects 87
Cutting List
Description Quantity/ Size Material Description Quantity/ Size Material
Foundation I S# building paper I roll
Drainage moleriol 1.S cu. yd. Compoctible grovel Shingles 1% squares Asphalt shingles-
Skids 2@10' 4 x 6 pressure-treated
2S0# per sq. min.
landscope timbers Roof flashing 10'-6" Aluminum
Floor Windows
Rim joists 2@10' 2 x 6 pressure-treated Glozing 3 pieces@ 21 x 36" lit -t hick acrylic or
Joists 9@10' 2 x 6 pressure-treated
polycmbanote glozing
Flam sheathing 4 sheets, Y/ longue-&-groove
Window stops S@8' I x 2 cedm
4 x 8' ext.-grode plywood Glozing tope 60 linear ft .
Wall Framing Clem exterim coulk I rube
8ottom plates 4@10' 2 x 4 Door
Top plates, front walls S@IO' 2x4 Panels 2 sheets@4x8' 3/4 M exterior-grade
Top plates, rem wall 2@10' 2 x 4
Top plates, side walls 6@10' 2 x 4
Panel trim
8@8' I x 4 cedm
Studs, rem wall II @8' 2 x 4
3@8' I x 2 cedm
Studs, front wall II @8' 2 x 4
Flashing 6 linem ft . Aluminum
(& clerestory wolll Skylights (optional)
Studs, side walls 26@8' 2 x 4 Glozing 2 pieces @ 13 x 22'11" lit-thick plastic or
Header, above windows 2@10' 2 x 6
polycmbonote glozing
Header, below windows 2@10' 2 x 10
2@8' I x 4 cedor
Header, dam 2@8' 2 x 6
Stops 2@8' I x 2 cedm
Header & post spocers See Sheathing, below
Glozing tope 2S linem ft .
Roof Framing
Fasteners & Hardware
Rafters (& blocking) 20@8' 2 x 6
16d galvanized common noils 4 Ibs.
Exterior Finishes
16d common noils 16
;' lbs.
Side wall fascia
2 x 6
1 Od common nails I Ib_
Eave fascia 3@12' 2 x 6
8d galvanized common noils 3 Ibs.
Fascia drip edge 8@8' Ix2
8d box noils 3Y, lbs.
Siding 10 sheets @ 4 x 8' 'Is" Texture I-II
8d galvanized siding noils 7 Ibs.
plywood siding I" galvanized roofing noils Sibs.
Corner 'lim
1O@8' I x 4 cedm 8d galvanized cosing noils 2 Ibs.
Bottom siding trim S@12' I x 4 cedm 1 %" galvanized screws I Ib_
Vents 8 2" i o round 2" galvanized screws I Ib_
metal vents
Door hinges with screws
Dam hondle 2
Sheathing 6 sheets @ 4 x 8' Y)" exterior-grade
Dam lock (optionoll
(& header/post spocers) plywood roof sheathing
- - 1 x 4 Trim boo rd,
I t Clear ploSli( windows
1 x 2 Windows lops
Tl -ll siding or equal
-- -- -- --
-- -- -- --
Tl -ll siding or equal
1 x 4 Trim boo rd,
/ Grode
Aspholl shingle
- f- 2 x 6 Fascia
w/1)( 2 drip edge
Tl -ll siding or equal
/, 1 x 4 Trim boo rd,
4 x 6 Skid

Si!cd Projects 8 9
II II Ii ding
""'gl" ____
11# Building
11" Plywood sheeting
2 x 6 Raflers
2 x 4 Bollom plate
I x 2 Drip edge
2 x 6 Fasci a
Nolch I, for drip
Blocking w/T diD. venls
2 x 4 Top plole
MMI=======:::: 2 2 x 6 Header wi'" plywood
ri T1 -11 siding or equal (typicol)
1/ Cleor plastic window
I x 2 Window slops w/coulking
2 2x 4Plotes
2 2 x 10 Header Wfi l" plywood
2 x 6 Rohers
Opl. skyl ight
x 6
x 4 stud 16" O.C
1I llliding
3/ Pl ywood floor
2 x 4 Bollom pi ole
1 x 4 Trim
2 x 6 Floor joi st x 4 Trim
4 x 6 Treated skid
Gro yel bed
fill (provi de for
positive drainage)
Nole: Stort
on this end
Nole: 5torl
on this end
W Plywood sheathing
1 Y, '---4

., .

1 Y, '---:l
W Plywood sheathing



1 Y,,---;
16" 16"
WA" 16"
16" 16"
10'-1 Y,"
1 '-9" X 9'-OY." Opening
16" 16"
O( 0.(
16" 16"
0.( 0.(
16" 16" 16"
0.( 0.( 0.(
9' 10Y,"
1'" 1'" 1'"
0(. 0.( 0.(
16" 16"
0.( 0.(
16" 16"
0.( 0.(
16" 16"
0.( 0.(
16" 16"
0.( O(

V-- 6Y,
2 x 4 Top plole
2 - 2 x 6 Header
w/ Yl" pl ywood
2 2x 4Sluds
2 2 x 4 Top plol,
2 - 2 x 10 Header
wi VI" pl ywood
2 x 6 Rollers 181
2 x 6 Fascia Boord
2 2 x 4 Top pl'I'
2 x 4 Siuds . 16" 0.(
2 x 4 Bollam plole
2 - 2 x 4 Top plole
2 x 4 Siuds . 16" 0.(
Si!cd Projects 91
2 x 6 Fasci a
11 11 sid ing
Sel f-seal shingles
1 x 2
Drip edge
2- 2x 10 Header 2x 6

t Plywood door
li n


f> Handle & latch

l x 4Trim /
I [on
2x 4
2x 4
2 x 4 Bollom plale
Fascia Boord
2 x 6 Rafter
2x 411Ud
11 ,11 l iding
2x 41tud
1 x 2 Door slop
r;" Plywood door
Vt Pl ywood spacer
2, 2x 4ltud,
I x 4 (orner board
2 - 1 x 4 Trim boards,
(ul end piece to IiI
11.- Spoce
1 x 6
1 x 4 Trim boards -----------i
Tl -ll Siding or equal
2 x 6 Fosdo
Insloll siding on sides
after 2 x 6 fascia board
is installed ----++------

, , , , , ,
o.c o.c o.c o.c o.c
16" r 16" r 16" 16" I 16" I
16" I
%" Plywood spocer --

VI" Plywood flooring
f-- %" Plywood spom

1 x 4 Studs
16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 6*"
, , , , ,





., / /

9 0-


Si!cd Projects 93



6' , Oll"
7' 6V."
20/4" 4', OVo 40/1" 6'
5' , Ill"
I How to Build the Clerestory Studio
Prepare the foundation site with a 4"-deep layer of
compacted gravel. Cut the two 4 x 6 timber skids at 118%".
Posi tion the skids on the gravel bed so their outside edges
are 118'1/ apart, making sure they are level and parallel with
one another.
Install oor sheathing onto the oor frame, starting
at the left rear corner of the shed, as shown In the FLOOR
PlAN (page 93). Rip the two outer pieces and final corner
piece so their outside edges are flush with the sides of the
foundation skids.
Cut two 2 x 6 rim joists at 118%". Cut nine 2 x 6 jOists at
115%" . Build the floor frame on the skids and measure the
diagonals to make sure the frame is square. Fasten the rim
jOists to the skids wi th 16d galvanized common nails driven
toenail style through the joists and into the skids.
Cut the studs and top and bottom plates for the front
wall and nail together with 8d common nails. Position the wall
on the floor deck and raise It. Fasten It by driving 16d common
nails through the sole plate and into the floor deck and frame.
Sf!ed Proj ects 95
Assemble the back wall framing with a bottom plate and
double top plate at 118%" and 82%" studs 16" O.c. Assemble
the square portions of the left and right side walls. Attach the
back wall and nail the side walls in place.
construct the sloped portions of the side walls. Install
them by nailing them to the floor deck with 16d common nails.
Also nail the corners to the front wall.
Take measurements to confirm the dimensions for the
clerestory wall frame. Build the clerestory frame wall to match
the dimensions.
Create the headers by sandwiching a Y/ plywood st rip
between two 2x dimensional framing members. Assemble the
header with deck screws driven through both faces.
Set the main header on top of the sidewall posts and
toenail it In place with 16d common nails. The main header
ends should be flush with the outsides of the side walls.
Install T1-11 siding on the front wall, starting at the left
side (when facing the front of the shed). Cut the siding to
length so it's flush with the top of the top plate and the bottom
of the floor jOists. Make sure any vertical seams fall at stud
locations. Add strips of siding to cover the framing on the
clerestory wall. Install siding on the rear wall, starting at the left
side (when facing the rear side of the shed).
Lift the clerestory wall frame onto the main header.
Orient the wall so it is flush in front and on the ends and then
attach it to the main header with 16d nails.
cut one of each "A" and "B" pattern rafters from a single
16-ft. 2 x 6, using the RAFTER TEMPLATES (page 94). Both roof
planes have a 6-in-12 slope. Test-fit the rafters and make any
necessary adjustments, then use the patterns to cut eight
more rafters of each type. Install the rafters as shown In the
REAR FRAMING and FRONT FRAMING (page 91). Toenail the
top ends of the "B" rafters to the main header
Sf!ed Projects 97
Frame each of the upper rake walls following the same
technique used for gable walls (see page 51). Cut the top plate
to t between the clerestory header and the door header (on
the right side wall) or the top plate (on the left side wall). Install
four studs in each wall using 16" on-center spacing.
Install' ," plywood roof sheathing, starting at the bottom left
side of the roof on both sides of the shed. Run the sheathing
to the outside edge of the fascia. Add 1 x 2 trim to serve as
a drip edge along all fascia boards, ush wi th the top of the
Install 2 x 6 fascia boards ush with the top edges and
ends of the rafters. The upper roof gets fascia on all four sides;
the lower roof on three sides. Miter the corner jOints if desired.
Install siding on the side walls, ush with the bottom of the
fascia; see the RAKE DETAIL (page 92.)
Fasten 1 x 2 stops inside the window rough openings,
ush with the Inside edges of the framing, using 2" screws.
Set each window panel into its opening, using glazing tape as
a sealant. Install the outer stops; see the BUILDING SECTION
(page 90). Caulk around the Windows and the bottom outside
stops to prevent leaks. Add 2 x 6 blocking (and vents) or screen
to enclose the rafter bays above the walls.
Add vertical trim at the wall corners. Trim and ash around
the door opening and windows (also see sidebar: Flashing
Above Doors & Windows, on page 73). Install ashlng and
trim, if desired along the Joint where the lower roof plane
meets the clerestory wall.
cut out the bottom plate inside the door s rough opening.
Cut the two door panels at 30' ,' x 81". Install 1 x 4 trim around
the panels, as shown in the DOOR DETAIL (page 92), using
exterior wood glue and 1'''' screws or nails. Add 1 x 2 stops at
the sides and top of the rough opening; see the JAMB DETAIL
(page 92). Also add a 1 x 4 stop to the back side of one of the
doors. Hang the doors With galvanized hinges, leaVing a',' gap
all around.
Add 15# building paper and Install the asphalt shingle
roo ng. The shingles should overhang the faSCia drip edge by
, ," along the bottom of the roof and by 3,' along the sides.
Install 1 x 4 horizontal trim boards ush with the bottom of the
siding on all four walls.
Finish the interior to your desired level. If you will be
occupying the shed for actiVities, adding some wall covering,
such as paneling, makes the interior much more pleasant. If
you add wiring and wall insulation, the Clerestory Studio can
function as a 3-season studio in practically any climate.
Sf!ed Projects 99
I Sunlight Garden Shed
I U , ~ I
his unique, is part greenhouse and part
s hed, makmg It perfect for a year-round garden
space or backyard sUllroom, Of eve n an art ist's studio.
The front facade is domi nated by \.vindows- foUf
29 X 72" \.vindows on the roof, plus four 29 X 18"
windmvs on the front wa ll. When appointed as a
greenhouse, two long planting tables insi de the shed
let you water and te nd to plants without flooding the
floor. [f gardening isn't in your plans, you can omit
the tables a nd cover the enti re floor with plywood, or
perhaps fill in betvveen t he floor t imbe rs v,lith pavers
or stones.
Some other det ail s t hat make t his lOx 12-ft.
shed stand Oll t are the homemade Dut ch door, with
top and bottom ha lves that YOLI ca n ope n toget her
or inde pendentl y, and its traditi ona l saltbox shape.
The roof cove ring shown here consis ts of standard
asphalt s hingles, but cedar s hingles make for a
ni ce upgrade.
Becct use sunlight plctys a central role in this shed
desion consider the location and orientation carefull y.
To avoid shadO\.vs from nearby structures, maintai n a
di stance between the shed and the structure that's at
least 2Vz times the he ight of the obstruction. Wit h all of
that sunlight, the temperature inside the shed is another
important consideration. You may wa nt to install some
roof vents (see page 58) to release hot air and water vapor.
Buildi no t he Sunliuht Garden Shed involves ct
b b
fev,l unconventional construct ion steps. First, the side
\va ll s are framed in t v,10 part s: You build the square
portion of the e nd wall s fi rst, then move onto the
roof framing. Afte r the raft e rs are up, you complete
t he "rake," or angled, sec tions of the s ide wa ll s. This
makes it easy to measure for each wa ll st ud, rat he r
tha n having to ca lculate the lengths beforehand.
Second, the shed's 4 x 4 floor st ructure also serves
as its fo undcttion. The pl ywood floor decki ng goes on
after t he wa ll s are installed, rather thct n before.
-:IIP" II ,
Sf!ed Projects 101
Cutting List
Description Quantity/ Size Material Description Quantity/ Size Material
Foundation/ Floor Shingles 2% squares Asphalt shingles -
Foundation bose S (u. yds. [ampactible gravel
250# per sq. min.
& interior drainage beds Windows
Floor joists & blacking 7@ 10' 4 x 4 pressure-treated Glazing 4 pi"es@3I V, x76'(" V, "-thi(k deor
landswpe timbers 4 pi"es@ 31 V, x 20'/," plasti( glazing
4 x 4 blacking I @IO' 4 x 4 pressure-treated Window stops 12@10' 2 x 4
I @8' landswpe timbers
Glazing tape 60 linear ft _
80x sills irim joists) 2@ 12' 2 x 4 pressure-treated
[lear exterior wulk 5 tubes
Nailing deats 2@8' 2 x 4 pressure-treated
& 2 x 4 blacking
Trim & stops 3@8'
I x 2 "dor
Floor sheathing 2 sheets@4 x 8' '/," ext.-grade plywood
Wall Framing
I-flashing 3 linear ft.
Bottom plates 2 @ 12', 2 @ 10' 2 x 4 pressure-treated
Plant Tables (optional)
Tap plates 4 @ 12', 2 @ 10' 2 x 4
Frant table, tap & trim 6@12'
1 x 6 "dor or
Studs 43 @8' 2 x 4
Oaor header & jack studs 3@8'
2 x 4
Frant table, plates & legs 4@12' 2 x 4 pressure-treated
Rafter header 2@ 12' 2 x 8
Reor table, tap & trim
6@8' 1 x 6 cedar or
Roof Framing pressure-treated
Rafters - A & [, & nailers 10@12' 2 x 4 Reor table, plates & legs 4@8' 2 x 4 pressure-treated
Rafters - 8 & lookouts 10@10' 2 x 4 Fasteners & Hardware
Ridge baord I @14' 2 x 6 16d galvanized common noils 5 Ibs_
Exterior Finishes 16d wmman nails 16 Ibs_
Rear fascia I @14'
I x 6 "dor I Od <amman nails I'/l lbs.
Rear soffi t I @14'
I x 8 "dor 8d galvanized <amman nails 2 Ibs_
Gable fa"ia irake baord)
4@ 16'
I x 6 "dor 8d galvanized box nails 3 Ibs_
& soffit
10d galvanized finish nails 2'(' lbs.
Siding 10 sheets @ 4 x 8' '/," Texture 1-11
8d galvanized siding nails 8 Ibs.
plywood siding
1" galvanized roofing nails 7 Ibs_
Siding flashing 10 linear ft. Metal I-flashing
8d galvanized casing nails 3 Ibs.
Trim* 4@ 12'
I x 4 "dor
I @12'
I x 2 "dor
6d galvanized CDsing nails 2 Ibs_
Wall corner trim
I x 4 "d"
Door hinges with screws 4@3V, ' C orrosionresista nt
00" handle
Sheathing S sheets@4x8' W' exteriorgrade
plywood roof sheathing
Sliding bol t lat(h
15# building paper I roll
Construction odhesive I tube
Orip edge 72 linear ft. Metal drip edge
'Note: TI,e I X 4 trim. bevel at the bottom of the sloped
windaws can be steeper (45 or more) so the trim slopes
cnvay from the window if there is concern that the trim trUlY
capture water mnning dmlln the glazing (see WIN DOW
DETAIL, page J08 ).
Self-seal shingles over #15
bUilding paper and 1h" exterior-
grade plywood sheathing
h 4 Roher "A: 16" O.C
Fascia board
I , 8 Soffil
2 x 4 Tie plate
2 x 4 Top plate
2 , 4 Wofl slud,
16" O.C ----'--it-
2'-0" x 38" High polling
lobi. w/sh.lf
1' -4"
2 x 6 Ridge board
2 , 4 Roher "C," 16" O.C
2 - 2 x 8 Headers
2 x 4 Nailer
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ = = = = = = = = = I x 4 Trim board
~ 2 x 4 Ripped window stops
6' -2!"
\4" (lear plastic window
2 - 2 x 4 Rafter MB-
2" x 4" Window stop
2 x 4 Window stop
wlW b.vel
I x 4 Trim board
2 x 4 Ripped
window stops
Yo" lI 1I Siidin!I -----j 6' llI"
~ F = = = ~ = = ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
\4" Clear plastic window
I x 4 Trim boards
!" Plywood
4 x 4 Treated
floor i
2 x 4 Nailer
2 , 4 Cripples, 16" O.C
YI" Tl -Il Siding
2 x 4 8ottom plate
4" Gravel bed,
Treated blocking
Si!ed Projects 103



\ /
2x 4Boxsili
2 )( 4 Blocking
oiling deal

Treated 2 )( 4 n
'---i \
4 x 8 Plywood flooring
4 )( 4 Treated f loor joists
IOIking /
4 )( 4 Tr ea ted b
. - Grovel bed,
I' -II Y'
2 x 6 Ridge boord
Rofter B"
2 2 )(
pocket n
' ,-f-
2 x 4 Noiler --
liepl,le /
Top plate

2 x 4
2 x 4
4 Hooder :el
plywood spoce
3' -2!/'"
3' -7\\" 1 "
CUi oul
Ponel "D-

2' -0"
16" 16"
1: v."
2'-0" 2' -0"
1I '-10Y."

, Lo
2' -0" I' -II Y'
2x 6
Ridge board
__ --- R,IIer "A"
R,IIer "8"
2x 4Noiler
2 - 2 x 8
Header pocket
2 x 4
1111'F=lf=='*'==#"5i'lt:::::t Tie plale
2 )( 4
3%" Top plole

16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 1\\
Ponel "B"
1'9" R.O.
Window siz e
~ ~

6" 1' OVO 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" I' OVO 6"
r- -
/ /'
LJ. 2x8
11 '-lOlA"
l V,"
3' -01 y),. 2'-10Vi, 2'-10Ylt 3'-01 Yl,
" 6"
Iffi' ~
1'-1 \14"
Cripple size
I' OYO 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" I' OYO
II '1 0\\"
6" I' 0%" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" I' Oll" 6"

. ~

~ =
1' -0lit," 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 1' 0)\"
Panel ~ (
2 x 6 Ridge board
2 x 4 Rolter "C," 16" 0.(
2 - 2 x 4 Rofter ~ B H
2 x 4 Nailer
1 x 6 Rake board
2 x 4 Ripped window slops
2 x 4 lookouts
@2' 0" 0.(
2 x 4 Tie plate
2 x 4 Top plate
2 x 4 Ripped window slops
2 2x411ud
2 x 4 (ripples
2 x 4 Bollom plate
2 x 6 Ridge board
2 x 4 Rolter "A: 16" 0.(
1 x 6 Rake board
2 x 4 lookouts, 2' -0" O.c.
2 x 4 Top plate
2 x 4 Woll slud, 16" O.c.
2 x 4 Bollam plate
S/!ed Projects 105



1 x 6
Fascia board
1 x 4
Trim board
1 x 4
(orner boards
11 II Siding
,7 ,7
I' I'
S If-sea l shingles
x 4 Trim board
x 4 Window
ops ripped

II y

y, (lear
pi osli( wi ndow

x 4
im board
fr: Tr
x 4
ler ripped
1 x 4
Tr im board
" I
x 4
( orner boards
Self-seal shingles over
#15 building paper and Yt"
eKlerior plywood sheathi ng
2 x 4 Rafters,
16" O.C
Melal drip edge
1 x 6 Fasci a board
1 x 8 Ripped soffil
2 x 4 Tie pi ole ____ -*_+--1
2 x 4 Top plot. -----It--t----'
Siding wi 1 x 4
(orner boards (typ.)
2 x 4 won studs, 16" O.C
S If I h' I - :e-seasmges
1 x 6 Trim board
(orner boards
/ Grod.
TI -II Siding
1 x 2 Wood him
~ ~
. , - ~
TI -II Siding -t-__ --I-
~ ~
2 x 4 Trim - - - ~ t I
. . - ~ ~ ~ -
2 x 2 Surround
2 x 2 Bracing
on bockside wi
lfi" lop joint
Door pull Provide lotch
behind lor
1 x 2 Door slop
dutch door
2 x 2 Surround
2 x 4 Dutch door
bollom roil
II-II Siding
1 x 2 Door slop
2- 2< 4
2 x 2 Surround Header
3Y1" hinge
wi Y!"
pl ywood
1 x 2 Trim
TI -II Siding
1 x 2 Trim
'--__________ -' 2 x 4 hallom roil
Si!cd Projects 107
Self-seal shingles
over #15 building -"""":->,"---",,,
paper and Y1" exterior
plywood sheathing


1 x 4 Trim
2 x 4 Nailer
2 - 2 x 8 Header
glued and nOiled'-------ji
2 x 4 Ripped
window slop ---------===--.J
IJt Cleor plastic
window panel ------------"
2 x 4 Ripped wi ndow
slop with (Dulking--------------'
1/." Clear plastic
window ponel
2 . 2 x 4 Rafters
2 x 4 Ripped wi ndow
slop wi 45 bevel
and caulking
(aulking (lypi,,11
2 x 4 Tie plate
1 )( 4 Trim board
2 x 4 Top plate
2 )( 4 Ripped window
slops with caulking
2 2 x 4 Woll slud

2 )( 4 Rafter -CW
3W 1'-7Vi t
--2'-' Ylt

2 Va"
H 2 x 4 Roher . ::,
lit Clear plastic wi ndow panel
2- 2x4Rofters
Ripped window
slops wi th caulking
1 x 4 Trim boord
. d
4 eor p osll( Win OW panel \
2 x 4 Ripped wi ndow slop \
3' -Olh" 1\

'" 2 x 4 lohlelop sluds, 16" O.C
,;, liding V
x 6 lohle hoords
1 )( 6 Trim board
2 )( 4 Top plote
= 2 x 411u s @ 16" O.C -
szIj - 2 x 4 8o"om plole
- ,
\; "
Plywood flOOring
"". "
4 Gravel bed x 4 Ripped
2 )( 6 Ridge board
2 )( 4 Blocking
2)( 4 Rafter
2 )( 4 Rafter MBff
1 )( 6 Rake board
I How to Build the Sunlight Garden Shed
Build the foundation, following the basic steps used for a wooden
skid foundation (page 28). First, prepare a bed of compacted gravel.
Make sure the bed is flat and level. Cut seven 4 x 4" x 10 ft. pressure-
treated posts down to 1151\" to serve as floor JOIsts. PosItion the
joists as shown in the FLOOR FRAMING PLAN. Level each jOiSt, and
make sure all are level with one another and the ends are flush. Add
rim joists and blocking: Cut two 12-ft. 2 x 4s (1421\") for rim joists.
Fasten the rim joists to the ends of the 4 x 4 jOists (see the FLOOR
FRAMING PLAN) w.h 16d ga",anized common nails.
To frame the rear wall, cut one top plate and one pressure-
treated bottom plate (142%"). Cut twelve studs (81 "). Assemble
the wall following the layout in the REAR FRAMING (page
105). Raise the wall and fasten it to the rear rim joist and the
intermediate joists, using 16d galvanized common nails. Brace
the wall in position With 2 x 4 braces staked to the ground.
Cut ten 4 x 4 blocks to fit between the jOists. Install SIX
blocks 34'/," from the front rim jOiSt, and install four blocks
31 V/ from the rear. Toenail the blocks to the jOists. All blocks,
jOiStS, and sills must be flush at the top.
For the front wall, cut two top plates and one treated
bottom plate (142%"). Cut ten studs (35'/.") and eight Cripple
studs (13%"). Cut four 2 x 4 window sills (311 Y,,"). Assemble the
wall follOWing the layout In the FRONT FRAMING (page 105).
Add the double top plate, but do not Install the window stops
at this time. Raise, attach, and brace the front wall.
Sf!ed Projects 109
cut lumber for the right side wall: one top plate (54' .'1,
one treated bottom plate (11 P ,'I, four studs (81 "), and two
header post studs (86' "); and for the left side wall : top plate
(54' .'1, bottom plate (11 P , '), three studs (81 "I, two jack studs
(77','1, two posts (86'.'1, and a built-up 2 x 4 header (39' ").
Assemble and Install the walls as shown in the RIGHT SIDE
FRAMING and LEFT SIDE FRAMING (page 104). Add the doubled
top plates along the rear and side walls. Install treated 2 x 4
nailing cleats to the joists and blocking as shown in the FLOOR
FRAMING PLAN (page 104) and BUILDING SECTION (page 103).
construct the rafter header from two 2 x 8s cut to 142','.
Join the pieces with construction adheSive and pairs of 10d
common nails driven every 24" on both Sides. Set the header
on top of the side wall posts, and toenail it to the posts with
four 16d common nails at each end.
Trim two sheets of 'J." plywood as needed and install them
over the jOists and blocking as shown in the FLOOR FRAMING
PLAN, leaving open cavities along the front of the shed and
a portion of the rear. Fasten the sheets with 8d galvanized
common nails driven every 6" along the edges and 8" in the
eld. Fill the exposed foundation cavities With 4" of gravel and
compact It thoroughly.
Cut one of each A and B pattern rafters uSing the RAFTER
TEMPLATES (page 108). Test- t the rafters. The B rafter should
rest squarely on the rafter header, and its bottom end should
sit ush wi th outside of the front wall. Adjust the rafter cuts
as needed, then use the pattern rafters to mark and cut the
remaining A and B rafters.
cut the 2 x 6 ridge board (154%"). Mark the rafter layout
onto the ridge and front and rear wall plates following the
B rafters and ridge. Make sure the B rafters are spaced
accurately so the windows will fit properly into their frames;
see the WINDOW SECTION (page 108).
Complete the rake portions of each side wall. Mark the
stud layouts onto the bottom plate, and onto the top plate
of the square wall section; see the RIGHT and LEFT SIDE
FRAMING. Use a plumb bob to transfer the layout to the rafters.
Measure for each stud, cutling the top ends of the studs
under the B rafters at 45and those under the A rafters at 30.
Toenail the studs to the plates and rafters. Add horizontal 2 x 4
nailers as shown in the framing drawings.
cut a pattern "C" rafter, test-fit, and adjust as needed.
Cut the remaining seven C rafters and Install them. Measure
and cut four 2 x 4 nailers (311'1,,") to fit between the sets
of B rafters (as shown). Position the nailers as shown In the
HEADER & WINDOW DETAIL (page 108) and toenail them to
the rafters.
Create the inner and outer window stops from 10-ft-long
2 x 4S. For stops at the sides and tops of the roof windows and
all sides of the front wall windows, rip the inner stops to 2%"
wide and the outer stops to 1" wide; see the WINDOW SECTION
and WINDOW DETAIL (page 108). For the bottom of each roof
window, rip the inner stop to 1V/; bevel the edge of the outer
stop at 45.
Sf!ed Proj ects 111
Install each window as follows: Attach inner stops as shown
in the drawings, uSing galvanized finish nails. Paint or varnish the
rafters and stops for moisture protection. Apply a heavy bead
of caulk at each location shown on the drawings (HEADER &
WINDOW DETAIL). Set the glazing in place, add another bead
of caulk, and attach the outer stops. Cover the rafters and stop
edges with 1 x 4 tnrn.
Install 1 x 6 fascia over the ends of the A rafters. Keep all
fascia v," above the rafters so it will be flush with the roof
sheathing. USing scrap rafter matenal, cut the 2 x 4 lookouts
(5%" ). On each outer B rafter, install one lookout at the bottom
end and four more spaced 24" on center going up. On the A
rafters, add a lookout at both ends and two spaced evenly In
between. Install the 1 x 6 rake boards (fascia) as shown in the
Cover the walls with T1-11 siding, starting with the rear wall.
Trim the sheets as needed so they extend from the bottom
edges of the rafters down to at least 1" below the tops of the
foundation timbers. On the side walls, add Z-flashing above the
first row and continue the si ding up to the rafters.
Rip 1 x 6 boards to 5%" width (some may come milled to 5%"
already) for the gable soffits. Fasten the soffits to the lookouts
with Siding nails. Rip a 1 x 8 board for the soffit along the rear
eave, beveling the edges at 30to match the A rafter ends.
Install the soffit.
Deck the roof with 'j," plywood sheathing, starting at the
bottom ends of the rafters. Install metal drip edge, building
paper, and asphalt shingles following the steps on page 56.
If desired, add one or more roof vents dUring the shingle
installation. Be sure to overlap shingles onto the 1 x 4 trim
board above the roof windows, as shown in the HEADER &
Build each ofthe two door panels using T1-11 siding, 2 x 2
bracing, a 2 x 4 bottom rail, and 1 x 2 trim on the front side;
see the DOOR CONSTRUCTION drawings (page 1071. The panels
are identical except for a 2 x 4 sill added to the top of the
lower panel. Install 1 x 2 stops at the sides and top of the door
opening. Hang the doors with four hinges, leaving even gaps all
around. Install a bolt latch for locking the two panels together.
construct the planting tables from 2 x 4 lumber and 1 x 6
boards, as shown in the TABLE & LOWER WINDOW DETAIL and
BUILDING SECTION. The bottom plates of the table legs should
be flush with the outside edges of the foundation blocking.
Complete the trim details with 1 x 4 vertical corner boards,
1 x 4 horizontal trim above the front wall windows, and
ripped 1 x 4 trim and 1 x 2 trim at the bottom of the front wall
windows (see the TABLE & LOWER WINDOW DETAIL). Paint the
siding and trim, or coat wi th exterior wood finish.
Sf!ed Proj ects 113
I Lean-to Tool Bin
he lean-to is a classic outbuil ding intended as a
supplemental)' structure for a larger bui lding. Its
silll ple shed-style roof helps it blend with the ne ighboring
structure and directs \vater avvay and keeps leaves and
debris from gett ing trapped between the two buil dings.
When buil t to a sillall shed scale, the lean-to (soilleti llles
called a closet shed) is most useful as an easy-access
storage locker that saves you extra trips into the garage
for often-used lawn and garden tools and supplies.
Th is lean-to tool bin is not actuall y attached to
the hOllse, though it appears to be. I t is designed as a
freestandi ng building \ \ ~ t h a wooden skid foundation that
makes it easy to move. \t\1ith all four sides Il nished, the bin
can be placed any'\vhere, but it works best \vhen set next to
a hOllse or garage wall or a tall fence. If you locate the bin
out in the open- where it \\Ion't be protected against \ ~ n d
and extreme weather- be sure to anchor it securely to the
ground to prevent it from blowing over.
As s hovvn here, the b in is fin ished with asphalt
s hingle roofi ng, T I I I ply\,vood sid ing, a nd I X cedar
tri m, but you can s ubst it ute any type of fin ish to
mat c h or complement a neighboring structure. Its
65"-tall double doors provide easy access to its 18
sguare feet of Aoor space. T he 8-ft.-tall rear wa ll
can accommodate a set of shelves while leavi ng
enough room below for long- handle d tools.
Because the tool bin sits on the ground, in cold
cl imates it will be subject to shift ing with seasonal freeze-
thaw cycles. Therefore, do not attach the tool bin to your
house or any other building set on a frost-proof fou ndation.
Sf!ed Projects 115
Cutting List
Description Quantity/ Size Material Description Quantity/ Size Material
Foundation Door trim
2@8' I x 10 545 cedar
Droinage molerial 0.5 cu. yd. Compoctible gravel
2@6' I x 8 545 cedar
Skids 2@6' 4 x 4 treated timbers
(orner trim 6@8' I x 4 545 cedar
Floor framing
3@6' I x 8 545 cedar
Rim joists 2@6' 2 x 6 pressure-trealed
1@6' I x 4 545 cedar
Joist 3@8' 2 x 6 pressuretreoted
Bug screen 8" x 6' Fiberglass
Floar sheathing I sheet@ 4 x 8 Jf. " tongue-g-grnove
ex t. grade plywood
Frame 3@6' 'I. x 3'1," (octuol) cedar
Joist cl ip angles 4 3 x 3 x 3" x 16'gouge
Stops 3@6' I x 2 S4S cedar
galvanized Panel material 12@6' I x 6 T&G V'joint
Wall Framing
545 cedar
80ttom plates I @8', 2@6' 2 x 4
Ibraces 2@ 10' I x 6 S4S cedar
Top plates I @8', 3@6' 2 x 4
Construction adhesive I tube
Studs 14@8', 8@6' 2 x 4
Interiar trim (optional) 3@6' I x 3 S45 cedar
Header 2@6' 2 x 6
5trap hinges 6, with screws
Header spacer I piece @ 6' 'I, plywood - 5" wide
Roof Framing
16d galvanized common nails 3'1, Ibs.
Rafters 6@6' 2 x 6
16d common nails 3'1, Ibs .
ledger* I @6' 2 x 6
lOd (ommon noils 12 nails
10d galvanized cosing na ils 20 nails
Rool sheathing 2 sheets@4x8' '/," ext.grade plywood
8d galvanized box na ils y, lb.
5hingles 30 sq. ft. 250# per square min.
8d galvanized finish nails 2 Ibs.
Roofing storter strip 7 linear ft .
8d common nails 24 nails
15# bu il ding paper 30 sq. ft .
8d box nail s y, lb.
Metal drip edge 24 linear ft. Galvanized metal
1 W' joist hanger noils 16 nails
Roofing cement I tube
%- galvanized roofing noils 'I. lb.
Exterior Finishes
21f2" deck screws 6 screws
Plywood siding 4 sheets@4x8' 'I. Texture 111 plywood
1%" wood screws 60 screws
siding, grooves 8" O.c. >(-Note: 6-foot mtlerial is often unavailable at locallulIlber
stores, so bu)' half as much of / 2-foot materia/.
To outsides of joists
2 x 6
Treated joists 16" O_L
. -
::: ~ / 4 x 4
~ '-
Treated timber skids
- ~ x 6
Treated rim joists
t t
5' -1 O, "
To outsides of rofters
Wolilines below
2x 6
Rofters 16" O_L
2 x 6 Ledger
Si!cd Projects 117
2 x 6 Ledger
2 x 6 Rollers
16" O.L
2 x 6 Rollers,
16" O.L
Double 2 x 4
Top plole
2 x 6 ledger
2 x 4 Top plole Double 2 x 4
Top plate
2 - 2 x 6
2 x 4 Top plole
Header w/Yl"
4' -9)\" 0
Rough opening
plywood spocer
2 x 4 Siuds,
16" O.c.
1x 4
Hallom plate
Y4" Plywood
y." Plywood 2 x 6 Tr eated
joists, 16" O.L
2 x 6 Treated 4 x 4 Treated
joists, 16" O.c. limber skid
4 x 4 Treated
limber skid
2 x 6 Ledger 2 x 6 ledger
Double 2 x 4
Double 2 x 4
Top plole
Top plole
2 x 6 Rafters
16" O.c.
2 x 4 Studs,
16" O.c. 2 x 4 Top plate
I /
2 x 4
2 x 4 Siuds, $
16" O.L
Ballom plole
2x 4
t Pl ywood Ball am plate
y," Plywood
2 x 6 Treated
2 x 6 Treated
joists, 16"0.C.
joists, 16" O.c.
4 x 4 Treoled 4 x 4 Treated
limber skid limber skid
1 x 8 FOSdlll - __________
'h" Plywood
Double 2 x 4 Top plate
2 x 6 Rollers,
I x 4
2x 4
Top plal e
2 2 x 6
Header w/Vt"
plywood space
2 x 411u dl, JU-------l
16" O.C
VI" Texture I -II
plywood siding
y." Plywood
1 x 8 Trim
2 x 6 Treated joist,
16" O.C
4 x 4 Tr eat ed limber sk id
II I I I 11--1
1 x 4 fascia
1 x 10Trim,
ripped 10 IiI
1 x 8 Trim
4 x 4 Treated
limber skid
1 x 8 Fascia

I x 4
*" Texlure 1-11
plywood siding
4 x 4
timber skid -
l x 8FoS( ia
1 x 4 Trim
111 YI" Texture
plywood I iding
led 4x 4Treo
limber ski d
Slwd Projects 119


to faces 01 studs
Asphalt sh",I,, _ _
2x 6
Ys" Plywood siding
I" Plywood siding
1 x 3 Trim
2 x 411ud
1 x 4Trim
1 x 10 Trim
ripped 10 size
Y4" Frame -----------.J
I x 21Iap--------------'
2x 6Roiter

6W 3Vl"
Aspholl shingles ----_ ______ _
15# Building poper ------------:
2 x 6 Roher
W Plywood - ___ _
Melal drip edge
Fiberglass screen
@ each raher spo(e
1 x 4 Fascia
2 x 4 Top plate
1 x 8 Trim, notched
around rafter toils
&G I x 6 T
cedar b oords
I x 6(
2 Doors required
I How to Build the Lean-to Tool Bin
prepare the site with a 4" layer of compacted gravel. Cut the
two 4 x 4 skids at 70%". Set and level the skids follOWing FLOOR
FRAMING PLAN (page 117). Cut two 2 x 6 rim joists at 70%" and
six Joists at 44'1.". Assemble the floor and set It on the skids as
shown in the FLOOR FRAMING PLAN. Check for square, and
then anchor the frame to the skids with four Joist clip angles
(inset photo). Sheath the floor frame with 'I."' plywood.
Fasten the four end studs of each side wall to the bottom
plate. Install these assemblies. Construct the built-up 2 x 6
door header at 63%" . Frame and install the front and rear walls,
leaving the top plates off at this time. Nail together the corner
studs, making sure they are plumb. Install the rear top plates
flush to the outsides of the Side wall studs. Install the front top
plate in the same fashion.
Cut plates and studs for the walls: Side walls- two
bottom plates at 47'1.", four studs at 89", and four studs at 69";
Front wall- one bottom plate at 63%", one top plate at 70%",
and four jacks studs at 63%". Rear wall - one bottom plate at
63%", two top plates at 70'1/, and six studs at 89". Mark the
stud layouts onto the plates.
cut the six 2 x 6 rafters following the RAFTER TEMPLATE
(page 120). Cut the 2 x 6 ledger at 70%" and bevel the top edge
at 26S so the overall width is 4'/,,". Mark the rafter layout onto
the wall plates and ledger, as shown In the ROOF FRAMING
PLAN (page 1171, then install the ledger flush with the back
side of the rear wall. Install the rafters.
Sf!ed Projects 121
Complete the side wall framing: Cut a top plate for each
side to fit between the front and rear walls, mitering the ends
at 26.5. Install the plates flush with the outsides of the end
rafters. Mark the stud layouts onto the side wall bottom plates,
then use a plumb bob to transfer the marks to the top plate.
Cut the two studs In each wall to fit, mitering the top ends at
26.5. Install the studs.
Add the 1 x 4 fascia over the bottom rafter ends as shown
in the OVERHANG DETAI L (page 120). Install 1 x 8 fascia over
the top rafter ends. Overhang the front and rear faSCia to cover
the ends of the side fascia, or plan to miter all fascia JOints. Cut
the 1 x 8 side fascia to length, and then clip the bottom front
corners to meet the front fascia. Install the side fascia.
Sheath the side walls and rear walls with plywood siding,
keeping the bottom edges %" below the floor frame and the
top edges flush with the tops of the rafters. Overlap the siding
at the rear corners, and stop it flush with the face of the
front wall.
Install the 'Ii' roof sheathing, starting wi th a full-width
sheet at the bottom edge of the roof. Fasten metal drip edge
along the front edge of the roof. Cover the roof with building
paper, then add the drip edge along the Sides and top of the
roof. Shingle the roof, and fi nish the top edge wi th cut shingles
or a solid starter strip.
Cut and remove the bottom plate inside the door opening.
Cut the 1 x 4 head jamb for the door frame at 57%" and cut the
side jambs at 64". Fasten the head jamb over the sides with
2W' deck screws. Install 1 x 2 door stops 'I." from the front
edges of jambs, as shown in the DOOR JAMB DETAIL (page
120). Install the frame in the door opening, using shims and
10d casing nails.
Staple fiberglass insect mesh along the underside of the
roof from each side 2 x 6 rafter. Cut and install the 1 x 8 trim
above the door, overlapping the side door jambs about y." on
each side (see the OVERHANG DETAIL, page 120).
For each door, cut six 1 x 6 tongue-and-groove boards at
63%". Fit them together, then mark and trim the two end
boards so the total width is 27%". Cut the 1 x 6 Z-brace boards
following the DOOR ELEVATION (page 120). The ends of the
horizontal braces should be 1" from the door edges. Attach the
braces with construction adhesive and 1%" screws. Install each
door with three hinges.
Rip vertical and horizontal trim boards to width, then
notch them to fit around the rafters, as shown in the DOOR
JAMB DETAIL (page 120). Notch the top ends of the 1 x lOs
to fit between the rafters and install them. Add 1 x 8 trim
horizontally between the 1 x lOS below the door. Install the
1 x 4 corner trim, overlapping the pieces at the rear corners.
Sf!ed Projects 123
I Convenience Shed
he Convenience Shed is so named for its exceptional
versati lity and ampl e storage space. This classic gabled
outbuilding has CI footprint that measures] 2 x 16 ft. and
it includes several features not found in most storage
sheds. For starters, its overhead garage door
provides easy access for large equipment, suppli es,
projects or even a small automobile. The foundation and
shed floor is a poured concrete slab, so it's ideal for heavy
items like lawn tractors and stationary tools.
To the ri ght of the garage door is a box bay
vv indO\v. This special architectural detail gives the
building's facade CI surpri sing house-l ike quality \vhil e
filling the interior v,lith Ilct tural light. And the bay's
33"-deep x 60"-wide sill platform is the perfect place
for he rb pots or an indoor fl ower box. The adjacent
wall incl udes a second large winclmv and a sta ndard
service door, making thi s end of the shed a pleasant,
conven ie nt space for all kinds of work or leisure.
Above the main space of the Convenience Shed is
a fully framed attic built ",th 2 x 6 joists for supporti ng
plenty of stored goods. The steep pi tch of the roof allows
for over 3 ft. of headroom LInder the peak. Access to the
attic is provided by a drop-down staircase that folds lip
and Ollt of the way, leaving the \vorkspace clear helO\v.
The garage door, service door, stai rcase, and both
windows of the shed arc pre-built factory units that you
install follmving the manufacturers' instructions. Be sure
to order aU of the units before starting construction. This
makes it easy to adj ust the fmmed openings, if necessary, to
match the precise sizi ng of e(:lch unit. AJso consult your local
buikhng department to learn (:Ibout design requirements
for the concrete foundation. l.'Ou may need to extend ancVor
reinforce the perimeter portion of the slab or include a
footing that extends below the frost line. An extended apron
(as seen in the Gambrel Garage, page 138) is very useful if
you intend to house vehicles in the shed.
Sf!ed Projects 125
Cutting List
Description Quantity/ Size Material Description Quantity/ Size Material
Foundation Drip edge & gable trim 160 line" ft Ix2ced"
Droinage malerial 2.75 cu. yd. [ompoctible grovel Siding 15 sheets@4x8' 'Is" Texture 111
[onerete slob Field measure 3,000 psi concrete
plywood siding wi
Mesh 200 sq. ft . 6 x 6", W1.4 x Wl.4
vertiml grooves 8"
welded wire mesh
on center (or similar)
Reinforcing bar As required by local code As required by local code
Siding flashing 30 line" ft. Metoll-flashing
Overhead do" iambs
I @ 10', 2@8'
I x 6 ced"
Wall Framing
Bottom plates I @ 16', 2 @ 12', 2 x 4 pressure-treated
Overhead do" stops 3@8'
[ed" do" stop
Overhead door surround I @ 10', 2@8' 2 x 6
Top plates 2 @ 14', 4 @ 12', 2 x 4
(orner trim 8@8'
Door & window him 4@8', 5@ 10' Ix4cedor
Stond"d wall studs
51 @B" 2 x 4
Box boy bottom trim 1@8'
I x 10 ced"
*moy use 92%" precut studs
Diagonal bracing 5@12' I x 4 (std. lumber)
Sheathing 14 sheets@4x8' V2" exteriorllrode
Jock studs 5@14' 2 x 4
(& hender, stud spocers) plywood roof sheathing
Goble end studs 5@8' 2 x 4 15# building paper 2 mils
Header, overhead door 2@10' 2 x 12
Shingles 4% squares Asphalt shingles -
Header, windows 2@10' 2 x 12
250# per sq. min .
Header, service door I @8' 2 x 12
Roof flashing 10'6"
Header & stud spocers See Sheathing, below
Doors & Windows
Box Bay Framing
Overhead g"oge door l@%x %
Holfwoll bottom plate 1@8' 2 x 4 pressure heated
Holfwoll top plate & studs 3@8' 2 x 4
Service door I unit for 38 x 7 ~ B Prehung exterior
mugh opening door unit
3@8' 2 x 6
Window 2uni tsfor57x41%" (osement mullion
Window frome 4@12' 2 x 4
window unit-complete
Sill plorlorm & top I sheet @ 4 x 8' y,"' plywood
Fasteners & Hardware
Rafter blocking I @8' 2 x 8
Holts wlnuts & washers 14 '!,"dio. x 12"
Roof Framing
16d galvanized common noils 3 Ibs.
Rafters 36@10' 2 x 6
16d common noils 15 Ibs.
(& lookouts, blocking)
I Dd common noils 2Y, lbs.
Ridge board I @18' 2 x 8
8d box noils 16 Ibs.
8d common noils 5 Ibs.
Floor iOists
16@12' 2 x 6
8d galvanized siding noils 10 Ibs.
Floor decking 6sheets@4x8' v," plywood
1 H galvanized roofing noils 10 Ibs.
Staircase I unit for 22 x 48" Disappearing attic
8d galvanized casing nails 3 Ibs.
rough opening stair uni t
Exterior Finishes
Entry door lockset I
Eo" fascia
2@18' 2x8cedor
Goble fascia 4@ID' I x 8 cedor
9%" 7'-10" I' -II '"
4' -6"
'[ '[
'[ I ~

. r-C-
~ .
1 ?At
4" Reinforced (oncrete slob wi
6 x 6 W 2.9 x 2.9 wire mesh
over 4" compacted granular fill
. [-
~ .
1%" Typical 10 cenler of
%" dia. x 12" anchor bolts

l _________________________
~ .

I e
} 4l\"
9' 1"

4" Reinforced concrete
w/6 x 6 W 2.9 x 2.9 wire
mesh over 4" compacted
2 -#4
To extend below
10(01 frost line
(12" min.
wino frost line)
l ~ Typical 10 (enler of
%" dio. x 12" anchor bolts
2 )( 8 Ridge board
VI" Plywood flooring
Trim board
2 x 4 Ballam plate
4" gravel bed, compacted
W,II slud
-- ------
II' -lOY.
Si!cd Projects 127
Self" ol'hingles--.
Drip edge '"

I x 2
2 x S Fascia
(osem enl window
I x 4
Trim -----
e --------
Overh eod door
11 11 Siding -
I /
I /
l __ /
I x 2 D .
rip e ge 12
I x
S FOIci, """"f<; ",
2Trim ",,:;;""
I x
, hing .d.:d

I x
4 '---
I Siding -
11 1
e -
rete slob


1' 6"
I x 4
Trim -
Gro ) i-1
(oncrele slob
11 11 Siding wi
grooves, S" o.c.
Self-seal shingles
'- I
'- _J
Note: Wiring pions
ore optional
- f'
6' H,
Ponel Ponel MB"
2 - 2 x 12 Headers
wI V1" plywood belweerr---
Disappearing stair __ .., l' -0'

L. I :...

I I "
L __ --.J

,Gil I
! / s' x 7' Overhead door

2' -0" 2' -0" "l'>,
- - -
. .
\ 2 - 2 x 12 Headers
WP/ GFI ,/!
, "
" " '" , "
" " '"
, "
" " '"
J+ I,
w/W plywood between
5' -0"
Panel "G"
9' 8Va" 6' -2V,
" " Ponel E " " Ponel F

.... <

2 x 8 Ridge board
2 x 4 Gable studs
2 x 6 Rafters --r-- /"
15\\" 16" 16" 16" S" S" 16" 16" 16" 15\\"
9' OY," 6; 3V." r-=- 2 x 4
lYrfl " I' (r lY, Ti. pl,l.
'/ 2 x 4 Top plale
/ 1.4
" f Oi,goo,1 bro<ing
'\ - Siocking b.lween
r'\." (orner studs
I"" / I---- __
,,'- 1'/ I I . - 2 x 4 Wall studs
16" 16 16 16" 16 16 16" 16" 16"16
I Poo.I "S"
I 2d
11 Va" Bottom pi ole
2 x 4 Tie plole ...............
T,p pi,

I. -V
11' -1011"
,1 /

w,n sl uds

11 \\ 16" 16"

16" 16" 16"
Ponel "D"
16" 16" 11 \\
Si!cd Projects 129
8" l Wo" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16"
- -- - -
16" 16"
YO" IO" 8"

2 x 6 Lookouts,
2' -0" O.C
2 x 8 Ridge board
2 x 6 Rollers
2 x 6 Allie floor joists,
16" O.C
Secondary cui needed for box bay window

l y," 'r+ 6' 3Y' ,f 'r'r


1% 3W-- i-- 4Y"
' 2Y{ 9' 8Y," wi/'
Ponel E
R.O. *

""7 ....
Ti I
16" 16" 16"
6' -2VO" 5Yo"/'
. "
4Y1 60/. Ponel F

2 x 4 Top plate
Blocking between
corner studs
2- 2x 12 Header
wi Y!" plywood spocer
2 x 4 Top plate
2 x 4 Bottom plate
Allie floor joists,
n n n
- ( )-
n' p.c
2 - 2 x 4 Header ----
5' -0"

R.O, *

2 x 4 Side stud ----
2 x 41i11 plale
,[ 16"t I6"t, 16"
2 x 6 Extension box
boy joists 5' 0"

-- - - -- - - - - -- -
16" 16" 16" 16" 16" 16" I t 15Y4 16" 16Va"
6t 9Yt
5 Yo"
Self-seal shingles over
#15 building paper over
I t exlerior grade plywood
2 x 6 Blocking _______
2 x 6 Floor joisls, 16" O.c
2 )( 6 Roller, 16" O.C
2 )( 4 TIe plate
2 )( 4 Top plate
1 )( 2 Drip edge
2 )( 8 Fascia
II -II Siding
2 - 2 x 12
Header wi I )"
plywood spocer
2)( 6 Trim
Caulk @ joint
Shim spoce
1 )( 4 Wood trim
1 )( 6 Ripped
Wood door slop'
2 )( 6 Surround
Wood door slop
Shim spoce
2 )( 4 Wall stud
I )( 6 Ripped
1 )( 4 Wood trim
Caulk @ joint
6' JOI ,"
To lop 01
concrete slob
2)( 4 Tie plate
2 )( 4 Top plate ----nL;::o,.J
2- 2x 12 Header
W/ll" plywood spocer
II -II Siding --__ +
Caulk @ joint
Shim spoce
1 )( 4 Wood trim
1 )( 6 Ripped
Wood slop
Shim spoce
I Service door {
door slop l
I ll -II Siding I dRipped
2 )( 4 Wall stud
Caulk @ joinl 1 x 4 Wood Irim
Si!ed Projects 13 1
9' -2Y,"
l V." 8' -IOYl"
l' 9Ya"
Secondary wt for rafters
over box bay window only
Sell-seal shingles over
#15 building paper over
%" exterior-grade pl ywood
2 x 6 Blocking
2 x 6 Rafters, 16" O.c.
2 x 6 Allie floor joists, 16" O.c.
2 x 4 Tie plate
2 x 4 Top plate
I x 2
Drip edge
2 x 2 Nailer
%" 1
2 x 411ud
2 x 41ill
2 x 68ay
extension j
I' x 10'
Ripped to
6' -8Y&"
l Ya"
Gable studs
1 x 4 Diagonal bracing
2 x 4 Wall studs,
16' O.C
4" Reinforced
conuete slo b over 4"
compacted granular lill
Optional V,"
gypsum board
JIlI liding
2 x 4 Wall
II interior finish "u";:-::,,j
is used, ~ ~ ~ ~ = = = = J
add2 x 4slud
1 x 4 (orner
Blocking between
corner studs
(aulk @ joint
,---------2 x6 Allie
floor joists,
16' O.C
,-----2 x 8
x 6 Lookouts,
2'0' O.C
2 x 4
lill plale
Yl" Plywood
2 x 6
Joi sts
I How to Build the Convenience Shed
Build the concrete foundation using the specifications
shown In the FOUNDATION DETAIL (page 127) and following
the basic procedure on pages 36 to 39. The slab should
measure 190%" x 142%". Set the 14 J-bolts into the concrete
as shown in FOUNDATION PLAN (page 127). Note: All slab
specifications must comply with local building codes.
Frame the back wall(s) following the BACK SIDE FRAMING
(page 129). use pressure treated lumber for the bottom plate,
and nail it to the studs with galvanized 16d common nails. All
of the standard studs are 92%" long. Square the wall, then add
1 x 4 let-in bracing.
Snap chalk lines for the bottom plates so they will be flush
with the outside edges of the foundation. You can frame the
walls In four continuous panels or break them up Into panels
"p;' through T', as shown in the WALL FRAMING PLAN (page
129). we completely assembled and squared all four walls
before raising and anchoring them.
Raise the back wall and anchor It to the foundation J-bolts
with washers and nuts. Brace the wall upright. Frame and
raise the remaining walls one at a time, then tie all of the walls
together with double top plates. Cover the outside of the walls
with T1-11 siding.
Sf!ed Projects 133
Cut fifteen 2 x 6 attic floor joists at 142%". Cut the top
corner at both ends of each JOist: Mark FI,' along the top edge
and "/'o" down the end; connect the marks, then cut along
the line. Clipping the corner prevents the jOist from extending
above the rafters.
Cover the attic floor with Vi' plywood, fastening it to the
jOists with 8d nails.
Mark the joist layout onto the wall plates following the
ATIlC FLOOR JOIST FRAMING (page 130). Leave 3'1/' between
the outsides of the end walls and the outer jOists. Toenail the
jOists to the plates with three 8d common nails at each end.
Frame the rough opening for the staircase with doubled side
JOists and doubled headers; fasten doubled members together
with pairs of 10d nails every 16". Install the drop-down
staircase unit following the manufacturer's instructions.
Use the RAFTER TEMPLATE (page 132) to mark and cut
two pattern rafters. Test-flt the rafters and adjust the cuts as
needed. Cut all (24) standard rafters. Cut four special rafters
with an extra blJd's-mouth cut for the box bay. Cut four gable
overhang rafters- these have no bird's-mouth cuts.
cut the 2 x 8 ridge board at 206%". Mark the rafter layout on
the ridge and wall plates as shown in the FRONT SIDE FRAMING
(page 130) and BACK SIDE FRAMING (page 129). Frame the roof
following the steps on pages 48 to 51. Install 6%"-long lookouts
24" on center, then attach the overhang rafters. Fasten the attic
Joists to the rafters with three 10d nails at each end.
construct the 2 x 4 half-wall for the intenor apron beneath
the box bay: Cut two plates at 60" (pressure-treated lumber for
bottom plate); cut five studs at 32Yi'. Fasten one stud at each
end, and space the remaining studs evenly in between. Mark a
layout line 12" from the inside of the shed's front wall (see the
BUILDING SECTION page 127). Anchor the half-wall to the slab
using masonry screws or a powder-actuated nailer.
Mark the stud layout for the gable end walls onto the end
wall plates following the SIDE FRAMI NG (page 129). Transfer the
layout to the rafters, using a level. Cut each of the 2 x 4 studs
to fit, mitering the top ends at 33.5. Install the studs flush with
the end walls.
Cut six 2 x 6 joists at 36W. Toenail the joists to the Inner and
outer half-walls follOWing the layout in the BOX BAY WINDOW
FRAMING (page 130); the joists should extend 15" past the outer
shed wall. Add a 6O"-long 2 x 4 sill plate at the ends of the JOiStS.
Cut two 2 x 4 side studs to extend from the sill plate to the top
edges of the rafters (angle top ends at 33S), and install them.
Install a built-up 2 x 4 header between the Side studs 41%" above
the sill plate.
Sf!ed Projects 135
Install a 2 x 2 nailer W' up from the bottom of the 2 x 4 bay
header. Cover the top and bottom of the bay with W' plywood
as shown in the BOX BAY WINDOW DETAIL. Cut a 2 x 4 stud to
fi t between the plywood panels at each end of the 2 x 4 shed
wall header; fasten these to the studs supporting the studs
and the header.
Add 2 x 8 fascia to the ends of the rafters along each
eave so the top outer edge will be flush with the top of the roof
sheathing. Cover the gable overhang rafters with 1 x 8 fascia.
Add 1 x 2 trim to serve as a drip edge along the eaves and
gable ends so it will be flush with the top of the roof sheathing.
Bevel the side edge of the 2 x 6 blocking stock at 33.5.
Cut individual blocks to fit between the rafters and attic jOists,
and install them to seal off the rafter bays; see the OVERHEAD
DOOR HEADER (page 131). The blocks should be flush with
the tops of the rafters. Custom-cut 2 x 8 blocking to enclose
the rafter bays above the box bay header; see the BOX BAY
Add Z-flashing above the first row of siding, then cut and
fitT1-11 siding for the gable ends. Cover the horizontal seam
with 1 x 4 trim snugged up against the flashing.
TO complete the t rim details, add 1 x 2 along the gable
ends and sides of the box bay. Use 1 x 4 on all vertical corners
and around the windows, service door, and overhead door.
RIp down 1 x 10s for hOrizontal trim along the bottom of the
box bay Also cover underneath the bay JOists with Vi' exterior-
grade plywood.
Install the two windows and the service door following
the manufacturers' instructions. Position the jambs of the units
so they will be flush with the siding, if applicable. Install the
overhead door, then add stop molding along the top and side
Rip-cut 1 x 6 boards to 4 W' wide for the overhead door
jambs. Install the jambs using the door manufacturer's
dimensions for the opening. Shim behind the jambs If
necessary Make sure the jambs are flush with the inSide of the
wall framing and extend %" beyond the outside of the framing.
Install the 2 x 6 trim as shown In the OVERHEAD DOOR
Install' ," plywood roof sheathing, starting at the bottom
ends of the rafters. Add building paper and asphal t shingles
following the steps on pages 55 to 57.
Sf!ed Projects 137
I Gambrel Garage
allowing classic barn designs , this 12 x ] 2-ft.
garage-size storage shed has several features that
make it a versatile stomge shed or \<\'orkshop. The
garctge's I 44-squa re-foot floor is a poured concrete
slab v.lith a thi ckened edge that all mvs it to serve as
the huildi ng's foundati on. Designed for economy and
durabili ty, the floor can easily support heavy mac hinery,
woodworking tools, and recreational vehicles.
The garage's sectional overhead door makes for qUick
access to equipment and supplies and provides ple nty of
ai r and natural light for \,vorlGng inside. The door opening
is sized for an 8-ft.-wide x 7-ft.-tall door, but you can buy
any size or style of door YOll li ke- just make your door
selection before YOLI start framing the garage.
Another important design feature of this building
is its gambrel roof, which maximizes the usable interior
space (see Sidebar next page). Beneat h the roof is a
sizeable storage attic wit h 3 J 5 cubi c feet of space and
its own double doors above the garage door. Note: we
added a patio section to the front of this shed.
optional slab will appear throughout the how-to photos.
The Gambrel Roof
The gambrel roof is the defining feature of two structures in American architecture: the barn and the Dutch Colonial
house. Adopted from earlier English buildings, the gambrel style became popular in America during the early 17th century
and was used on homes and farm buil dings throughout the Atlantic region. Today, the gambrel roof remains a favorite
detail for designers of sheds, garages, and carriage houses.
The basic gambrel shape has two flat planes on each side, with the lower plane sloped much more steeply than the
upper More elaborate versions Incorporate a flared eave, known as a "Dutch kick," that was often extended to shelter
the front and rear facades of the bUilding. Barns typically feature an extended peak at the front, sheltering the doors of
the hayloft. The main advantage of the gambrel roof is the Increased space underneath the roof, providing additional
headroom for upper fl oors In homes or extra storage space in outbuildings.
Sf!ed Proj ects 139
Cutting List
Description Quantity/ Size Material Description Quantity/ Size Material
Foundation Roofing
Droinoge material 1.7 5 cu. yds. (ompactible grovel Roof sheothing 12 sheets@4x8' '/," plywood
(oncrete slob 2.5 cu. yds. 3,000 psi concrete
Shingles 3 squares 250# per squore (min.)
Mesh 144 sq. fl. 6 x 6", Wl.4 x Wl.4
15# building poper 300 sq. fl.
welded wire mesh
Metol drip edge 2@14',2@12' Golvonized metal
Wall Framing
Roof vents (optional) 2 units
Bottom plotes 4@12' 2 x 4 pressure-treated
Top plates 8@12' 2 x 4
Frame 3@6' l\ x 4" (actual) S4S cedor
Studs 47@92'1s" 2 x 4
Stops 4@8' I x 2 S4S cedor
2@10',2@6' 2 x 8
Glozing tope 30 lineor ft.
Header splicers
I @9', I @6' '/," plywood -)" wide
Gloss 1 piece - field measure 1;'" clear, tempered
Angle broces I @4' 2 x 4
Exterior trim
I x 4 S4S cedor
Gable Wall Framing
Interior trim (optional) 3@6' I x 2 S4S cedor
Plates 2@10' 2 x 4
Studs 7@10' 2 x 4
Frame 3@8' I x 6 S4S cedor
2@6' 2 x 6
Door sill I @6' I x 6 S4S cedor
Header splicer
I @S' '/," plywood-S" wide
Stops I @8', 1@6' I x 2 S4S cedor
Attic Floor
Ponel material 4@8' I x 8 T&G V-joint
Joists 10@12' 2 x 6
S4S cedor
Floor sheothing 3 sheets@4x8' Y/ tongue-&-groove
Door X-broce/panel trim 4@ 6', 2@ 8' I x 4 S4S cedor
ext.-grode plywood
Exterior trim I @8', 1@6' I x 4 S4S cedor
Kneewall Framing
Interior trim (optional) I @8', 1@6' I x 2 S4S cedor
Bottom plotes 2@ 12 ' 2 x 4
StTOP hinges 4
Top plates 4@ 12' 2 x 4
Garage Door
Studs 8@ 10' 2 x 4
Frame 3@8' I x 8 S4S cedor
Nailers 2@ 14 ' 2 x 8
Door I @ 8' x 6' -8" Sectional flush door
Roof Framing
w/2" trock
Rafters 28@ 10' 2 x 4
Roils 2@8' 2 x 6
Metol anchors - rafters 20, with nails Simpson H2_S
Trim 3@8' I x 4 S4S cedor
(ollor ties 2@6' 2 x 4
Ridge boord I @14' 2 x 6
Anchor bolts 16 %- x 8", with washers
lookouts I@IO' 2 x 4 & nuts, golvonized
Soffit ledgers 2@ 14' 2 x 4 16d golvonized common nails 2 Ibs .
Soffit blocking 6@8' 2 x 4 16d common nails 17 Ibs.
Exterior Finishes 10d common nails 2 Ibs.
Pl ywood siding 14 sheets@4x8' 'Is" Texture I-II plywood, 10d golvonized cosing nails I Ib_
grooves 8" 0_ C.
8d (ommon nails 3 Ibs.
I-flashing -siding 2 pieces@ 12' Golvonized 18-gouge
8d golvonized finish nails 6 Ibs.
Horizontal wall trim 2@12' Ix4cedor
8d box nails 6 Ibs.
Corner trim
8@8' Ix4cedor
6d golvonized finish nails 20 noils
6@ 10', 2@8' Ix6cedor
3d golvonized box noils '/, lb.
Subloscio 4@8' I x 4 pine
Va" golvonized roofing nails 2'/' Ibs.
Plywood soffi ts I sheet@ 10' Ys" cedor or fir plywood
2112" deck screws 24 screws
Soffit vents 4@4xl2" louver w / bug screen
1%" wood screws 48 screws
I-flashing - goroge door I @IO' Golvonized 18-gouge
(onstruction adhesive 2 tubes
Silicone-latex coulk 2 tubes
S' llt 1 '-6Y."
2 x 6 Ridge
2 x 4 (oliar, 32' 0.(.
yt Plywood roof sheathing
... --I---f---;7 2 x 4 Roher, 16" 0.(.
Double 2 x 4 lop plales
2 x 8 Nailer
x 4 Studs, 16' 0.(.
2 x 4 Soltom plole, set on joists
*" Plywood, set
between ploles
1 x 6 Fascia
2 x 6 Joists, 16" o.c
Double 2 x 4 lop ploles
2 . 2 x 8 Header
wi Yl" plywood spacer
Texture 1-11 plywood siding
x 4 Studs, 16" 0.(.
3%" Concrete slab on-grade
4" Compacted grovel
Si!cd Projects 14 1
I' I'
8' x 6' -8" Garage door
Roof lines shown dashed
2 x 4 Studs 16" O.c.
31h" Floaling concrete slob on-grade
wi 6 x 6'
I' I' , :
... _ .. --- _.- .- --- --- _.- --- --- _.- --- --- _. --- --- --- -- - ------ --- --- --- .- .... - --- _.- -- ----
2' 0"
Rough opening
S' O"
Dimensions are 10 outside faces of studs
1 x 4 Rafter----\-
1 x 4 Rafter
slope 6
Si! cd Projects 143
Roof venl
Double door-
see detail
1 x4 Trim
Asphoh shingles
1 x 6 Fascia
Pork chop
1 x 6 Fascia
1 x 4 Trim,
1 x 4 Trim/-
mitered corners
mitered corners
Texture ]11
plywood siding Texture 1-11 -
Flush overhead

garage door

1 x 4 Trim
Window with
14" dear
tempered gloss
Asphoh shingles
1 x 4 Trim
1 x 6 Fascia
1 x 6 Fascia
1 x 4 Trim,
1 x 4 Trim
mitered corners
Texlure 111
plywood siding
Texture 111
plywood siding
Asphalt shingles over
15# building paper
W Plywood
Melal drip edge
2x 4
Overhang ralters
1 x 6 Fascia
2 x 4 Rofter
a" Plywood soffit
2 x 4 Lookouts
16" 0.(.
Texture ]-11
plywood siding
2 x 4 Ilud
16" 0.(.
Anchors @ each rafter
Asphalt shingles
over 1 S# building paper
V{ Plywood
2 x 4 Ilud 16" 0.(.
2 x 4 Soffillroming
Melal drip edge
1 x 4 Subfosdo
1 x 6 Fascia
,U---\---tlfH---2 x 4 loffilledger
Soffit venl
'--------Y," Plywood soffit
'---------I"lure 111
plywood siding
Overhang rohers
01 front & reor
(side view)

rafter 01 IranI
(lop view)
2 x 4 Ilud ----------,
Texture 1-11 plywood siding
V," Anchor boll ,
S"long, 4' 0" 0.(. mox.
6" from corner
3%" (oncrele
slob-on-grade. wi 6 x 6" -
Wl.4 x Wl.4 W.W.M.
4" Compocted grovel
S/!ed Projects 145
1 x 2 Trim
*" Frome
,.." Boord door
wi 1 x 4 broce
'- \4"
I x 4Trim
Texture I-I!
plywood siding
I x 2110p
x 6 Frome, ripped to IiI
T&G 1 x 8 door ponel
*" Plywood
x 6 Allie joists 16" 0,(.
1 x 4 Door slile & roil
Iloped sill cui
from 1 x 6 cedar
If," x Vi" Drip edge
1 x 4Trim
_--lIl---2 x 4 Ilud
Texture 111 plywood siding
1 x 4 Boards glued
and mewed 10
1 x 8 boards
I x 8 T&G V-JT
Slrop hinge
Sectional garage door
2x 6 Roil
I x 6 Full-depth fro me
1 x 4 Trim
Texture 1-11
plywood siding
CuI slope
lor drainOge\
1 x 2 Redwood slop
01 window sill
1 x 2 Trim
1 x 2SIop
Glozing lope, both sides
Sloped slop @ still
1ft (Ieor gloss, tempered
I x2110p
1 x 4 Trim
'---------Texture \-11 plywood siding
4' -11 1ft"
Rough opening
Gohle . 011 top plote

Header W/Yl"
plywood spocer
2 x 6 Ridge
Oouhle 2 x 4
stud under ridge
2 x 4 Rafters
2 x 4

Angle broce,
g. installed @ 45
'7 2- 2x 8
Co 1> 9
:.:. Header w/'h"
plywood spocer
;., 2 x 4 Itud,
I I f
2x 4Treoted
-"-''----''--+-____ ,--''---''----____ ----->1_ bollom plole
0' 2' -0",., S' -O" _'_'
Rough opening
6 v::
2x 6Ridge
Double 2 x 4
stud under ridge
2 x 8 Nailer
1'-.:>.".------ Gohle .011
lop plole
2 x 4 Rafters
Soffit blocking
2x 4
Douhle 2 x 4
lop ploles
2 x 4 Studs
16" O_C
2 x 4 Treated
hallam plole
2 x 6 R'd

2 x 4(
32" 0,(
2x SN
lie -
2x 4R oilers .........,
2 x 6 J

top plot
2x 4
2x 4
dger /
S Hooder V
Iywood 'poeer / f-- -----
2x 41
16" 0,(
reoted 2 x 4 T
bollom plole
f- :"
' "

2 x 6 R'd I ge
liar lie,
2 x Ho
16" O_C
2 x 4 (0
32" D,C
oilers 2x 4R
2x SN
2 x 6 Jo
2x 4
Douhle 2
lop plole
2 x 41t
16" O_C

eoted 2 x 4 Tr
bollom plole
14' -0" Ridge length
Si!cd Projects 147
I How to Build the Gambrel Garage
Build the slab foundation at 144" x 144", following the steps
on page 36. Set I-bolts into the concrete 1%" from the outer
edges and extending 2y," from the surface. Set a bolt 6" from
each corner and every 48" in between (except in the door
opening). Let the slab cure for at least three days before you
begin construction.
construct the built-up 2 x 8 headers at 99" (garage door)
and 63" (window). Frame, install, and brace the walls with
double top plates one at a time, following the FLOOR PLAN
(page 142) and ELEVATION drawings (page 144). use galvanized
nails to attach the studs to the sale plates. Anchor the walls to
the I-bolts In the slab with galvanized washers and nuts.
Snap chalk lines on the slab for the wall plates. Cut two bottom
plates and two top plates at 137" for the sidewalls. Cut two
bottom and two top plates at 144" for the front and rear walls. Use
pressure-treated lumber for all bottom plates. Cut 38 studs at 92%",
plus two jack studs for the garage door at 78W and two window
studs at 75W'. Note: Add the optional slab now, as desired.
Build the attic floor, Cut ten 2 x 6 joists to 144" long, then
clip each top corner wi th a 1W-long, 45
cut Install the jOists
as shown In the FRAMING ELEVATIONS, leaving a 3Yi' space
at the front and rear walls for the gable wall studs. Fasten the
JOists with three 8d nails at each end.
Frame the attic kneewalls: Cut four top plates at 144" and
two bottom plates at 137". Cut 20 studs at 26%" and four end
studs at 33%". Layout the plates so the studs fall over the attic
JOiStS. Frame the walls and install them 18Va" from the ends of
the joists, then add temporary bracing. Option: You can begin
building the roofframe by cutting two 2 x 8 nailers to 144"
long Fasten the nailers to the kneewalls so their top edges are
32%" above the attic jOists.
Mark the rafter layouts onto the top and outside faces of
the 2 x 8 nailers; see the FRAMING ELEVATIONS.
Cover the attic oor between the kneewalls with %"
plywood. Run the sheets perpendicular to the joists, and stop
them flush with the outer joists. Fasten the flooring with 8d
ring-shank nails every 6" along the edges and every 12" In the
field of the sheets.
Cut the 2 x 6 ridge board at 168", mitering the front end at
16. Mark the rafter layout onto the ridge. The outer common
rafters should be 16" from the front end and 8" from the rear
end of the ridge.
Sf!ed Projects 149
Use the RAFTER TEMPLATES (page 143) to mark and cut two
upper pattern rafters and one lower pattern rafter Test-fit the
rafters and make any needed adjustments. use the patterns to
mark and cut the remaining common rafters (20 total of each
type). For the gable overhangs, cut an additional eight lower
and six upper rafters following the GABLE OVERHANG RAFTER
DETAILS (page 145).
Snap a chalk line across the sidewall studs, level wi th
the ends of the rafters. Cut two 2 x 4 soffit ledgers at 160"
and fasten them to the studs on top of the chalk lines, with
their ends overhanging the walls by 8". Cut 24 2 x 4 blocks to
fi t between the ledger and rafter ends, as shown in the EAVE
DETAIL (page 145). Install the blocks.
Install the common rafters; then reinforce the joints at the
knee walls with framing connectors. Also nail the attic joists
to the sides of the floor rafters. Cut four 2 x 4 collar ties at
34", mitering the ends at 26.5" . Fasten them between pairs of
upper rafters, as shown in the BUILDING SECTION (page 141)
Frame the gable overhangs. Cut 12 2 x 4 lookouts at 5"
and nail them to the inner overhang rafters as shown in the
overhang rafters over the common rafters, using 10d nails.
Cut the two front (angled) overhang rafters; see the GABLE
OVERHANG RAFTER DETAILS. Install those rafters; then add two
custom-cut lookouts for each rafter.
TO complete the gable walls, cut top plates to fit between
the ridge and the attic kneewalls. Install the plates flush with
the outer common rafters. Mark the stud layout onto the
walls and gable top plate; see the FRONT and REAR FRAMING
ELEVATIONS. Cut the gable studs to fit and install them.
Construct the built-up 2 x 6 attic door header at 62Y;'; then clip
the top corners to match the roof slope. Install the header with
jack studs cut at 40%".
Mill a ','-wide x ' ."-deep groove into the 1 x 6 boards for
the horizontal fascia along the eaves and gable ends (about
36 linear ft.); see the EAVE DETAIL. Use a router or table saw
with a dado-head blade to mill the groove, and make the
groove 'is" above the bottom edge of the fascia.
Install siding on the walls, holding it 1" below the top of
the concrete slab. Add Z-flashing along the top edges, and
then continue the siding up to the rafters. Below the attic door
opening, stop the siding about %" below the top wall plate, as
shown in the ATTIC DOOR SILL DETAIL (page 146). Don't nail the
siding to the garage door header until the flashing IS installed
(Step 20)
Install the 1 x 4 subfascia along the eaves, keeping the
bottom edge flush with the ends of the rafters and the ends
flush with the outsides of the outer-most rafters; see the EAVE
DETAIL. Add the milled fascia at the eaves, aligning the top of
the groove wi th the bottom of the subfascla. Cut fascia to wrap
around the overhangs at the gable ends but don't install them
until Step 17.
Sf!ed Projects ' 151
Soffit panel
Soffit panel
Soffit ledger
Add fascia at the gable ends, holding it up)/," to be flush
with the roof sheathing. Cut soffit panels to fit between the
fascia and walls, and fasten them with 3d galvanized nails.
Install the end and return faSCia pieces at the gable overhangs.
Enclose each overhang at the corners with a triangular piece
of grooved fascia (called a pork chop) and a piece of soffit
material. Install the soffit vents as shown in the EAVE DETAIL.
Cover the Z-flashing at the rear wall with horizontal 1 x 4
trim. Fi nish the four wall corners with overlapping vertical
1 x 4 trim. Install the 2 x 6 ralls that will support the garage
door tracks, following the door manufacturer's instructions to
determine the sizing and placement; see the GARAGE DOOR
TRIM DETAI L (page 146).
Sheath the roof, starting at one of the lower corners. Add
metal drip edge along the eaves, followed by building paper;
then add drip edge along the gable ends, over the paper Install
the asphalt shingles (see page 56) . Plan the courses so the
roof transition occurs midshingle, not between courses; the
overlapping shingles will relax over time. If desired, add roof
vents (page 58).
For the garage doorframe, rip 1 x 8 trim boards to width
so they cover the front wall siding and 2 x 6 rails, as shown
in the GARAGE DOOR TRIM DETAIL. Install the trim, mitering
the pieces at 22S. Install the 1 x 4 trim around the outside
of the opening, adding flashing along the top; see the FRONT
ELEVATION (page 144).
Install the garage door in the door opening, following the
manufacturer's directions.
For the attic doorframe, rip 1 x 6s to match the depth of
the opening and cut the head jamb and side jambs. Cut the Sill
from full-width 1 x 6 stock; then cut a kerf for a drip edge (see
the ATTIC DOOR SILL DETAIL). Fasten the head jamb to the side
jambs and install the sill at a 50 slope between the side jambs.
Install the doorframe using shims and 10d casing nails. Add
shims or cedar shingles along the length of the sill to provide
support underneath. The front edge of the frame should be
flush with the face of the siding. Add 1 x 2 stops at the frame
sides and top, '(." from the front edges.
Build the window frame, which should be Y/ narrower and
shorter than the rough opening. Install the frame using shims
and 10d galvanized casing nails, as shown in the WINDOW
JAMB DETAIL (page 146). Cut eight 1 x 2 stop pieces to fit the
frame. Bevel the outer sill stop for drainage. Order glass to fi t, or
cut your own plastic panel. Install the glazing and stops, using
glazing tape for a watertight seal. Add the window trim.
Build the attic doors as shown in the ATTIC DOOR
ELEVATION (page 1461. using glue and 1 %" screws. Each door
measures 28W' x 38", including the panel braces. Cut the 1 x 8
panel boards about y." short along the bottom to compensate
for the sloping sill. Install the door with two hinges each. Add
1 x 4 horizontal trim on the front wall, up against the doorsill;
then trim around both sides of the doorframe. Prime and paint
as desired.
Sf!ed Projects 153
I Simple Storage Shed
he name of this practical outbuilding says it all. It's
an easy-to-bui ld, sturdy, 8 x 10-ft. shed with plenty
of storage space. \,Vith no \vindows it also offers good
security. The clean, symmetricu] interi or and cent rally
located double doors make for easy access to your stuff.
The \.va lls are ready to be lined \.vith util ity shelves,
and you can quickly add a ramp to simplify parking t he
lawnmowcr, wheelbarrow, and other yard equipment.
This shed is indeed bas ic, but it's also a nicely
proportioned buil ding wit h arc hi tecturally appropriate
fe<:ltures l ike overhanging eaves and just enough trim
to give it a qua lity, hand- built appear<:lllce. \Vithout
getti ng too felney- reme mber, simpl icity is the central
des ign idea- you might consider fi ni shi ng the exterior
walls and roof of the shed wit h t he same materials
used on your house. This casy modification visua ll y
integrates t he shed \A/ith t he rest of t he prope rty
and provides a custom look that you can't get with
kit buildings.
Ins ide t he shed, YOLI ca n maximize storClge space
by build ing an attic: Insta ll full-length 2 x 4 or 2 x 6
joists (which also serve as rafter t ies) a nd cover t hem
\vit h Y2 1! ply\vood. Include one or more framed- in
access openings t hat you ca n easily reach with a
stepladder. This type of storage space is ideal for
seldom-used household items- like winter clothing
and holiday decorations- that you can stow in covered
plast iC bi ns.
The simpl icity and economy of this shed des ign
also make it a great choice for cabins, vacation homes,
and other remote locat ions. A heavy-duty hasp latch
and padlock on the door, along with head and foot
slide bolts inside, wi ll provide t he security you need
whe n you' re away for long pe ri ods.
Sf!ed Projects 155
Cutting List
Description Quantity/ Size Material Description Quantity/ Size Material
Foundation Roofing
Droinage malerial 1.25 (u. yd. Compoctoble gravel Sheathing 5 sheets@4x8' 1/ 2" exterior-grade
Skids 2@10' 4 x 6 pressure-treated
(& door header spocer) plywood roof sheathing
landscape ti mbers 151 building paper I roll
Floor Shingles 1% squares Asphalt shingles-
Rim joists 2@10' 2 x 8 pressure-t reated,
250# per sq. min.
rated for ground contoct Drip edge 45 lineor ft. Metal drip edge
Joist 9@8' 2 x 8 pressurHreoted Door
Floor sheathing 3sheets@4x8' lh- tongue-g-groove Frames 7@8' 2 x 4 pressure-treated
"t.-grade plywood
Panels I sheet@4x8' Vn"ture I-II
Wall Framing plywood siding
Bottom plates
2@ 10', 2 @8' 2 x 4 Stops & overlap trim 4@B' I x 2 pressure-treated
Top plates 4@ 10', 4 @8' 2 x 4 Fasteners & Hardware
Studs 36@8' 2 x 4 16d galvanized common noils 4 Ibs_
Door header I@IO' 2 x 6 16d (ommon nails 10 Ibs.
Roof Framing I Od common nails 2 lb.
Rafters 6@12' 2 x 6 8d galvanized common nails 3 Ibs_
Rafter blocking 2@10' 2 x 6 8d box nails 3 Ibs_
Ridge boord I@IO' I x8 8d galvanized siding or finish nails 9 Ibs_
Collor ties 2@12' 2 x 4 I" galvanized roofing nails 5 Ibs_
Exterior Finishes Door hinges with screws 6 @ 3'1'- Galvanized metal hinges
Siding II sheet @ 4 x B' '/," Texture I-II Door handle
plywood siding
Door lock (optional)
4@12' Ix8
Door head bolt
Corner him
8@8' Ix2
Door foot bolt
Goble wall trim
2@8' Ix4
Construction adhesive
Siding flashing 16 lineor ft_ Metoll-flashing
I x 8
1 x4Trim
I x 2
(orner i
2 x 8
Sose frome ------''''<:
Aspholt shingles
1 x 8 Foscio
x 6 Siocking
~ ~ i ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ f f ~ ~ ~ l l f ~ ~ ~ x 8 Top plotes
2 Doors, eoch
6',8" high x 2',0" wide,
2 x 4 frome with Tl -ll
treoted plywood siding
481;1" x SO yt
Door R.O.
4x 61kid
Si!cd Projects 157
I x 8
Ridge board
2x 4
Goble studs
2x 4
S.ud .,11
2x 8
Bose fro me
2x 4
r li es
2x 4
Top of woll
d ~
4x 6
~ ~ ~ ~ - - - - - - 2 x 4
Collar lies
2x 6
R,her 2' 0' 0.(.
2 2 x 4
Rofter supporh
4x 6Skid
~ ~ ~
g - - - - - ~
d i=
], 11'
9', 11"

Top plol
2x 4


2x 4
Tll Y."
2x 8
Rim joist
2x 8
Joi st
4 x 6 Skid
2x 8
Rim joist
51 Yt" Header
4' -1ft" R.O.
9', 11"
2 4 x
Top plol

/ 2 x 4

2x 4
Shed Projects 159
" I
1 1
1 1 1
1 1
,,\1 1 1
,,\ 1 1
" 1
"\ 1
'\I 1
vi 1


tv t'\ V
IV 10 \

2' 1l !4" 4' lh"
9' -II" (10'0" @ sheathing)
1 1
1 1
1 1
1 1
1 1
1 1
1 1
1 1
1 1
1 1
1 1
1 1
"\ 1

II ,\
f(\ \
2' Il W

Aspholl shingles
(ollar lies
Rafters 2" O.L
2x 4
Studs 16" O.c.
Floor joists 16" O.c.
t Plywood

, I' I
_____ __ _________ 2x_6 ______________
2 x 4 Frame
2 x 4 (ross brc(e
(angle down to
hinge side)
Reor View
VI" Pl ywood siding
Front View
Si! cd Proj ects 161
I How to Build the Simple Storage Shed
Prepare the foundation site with a 4" layer of compacted
gravel where the skids will be located. Cut the two 4 x 6 timber
skids at 119". Position the skids on the gravel beds so their
outside edges are 95" apart, making sure they are level
and parallel.
Attach tongue-and-groove plywood flooring to the floor
frame, starting at the left front corner of the shed. Begin the
second row of plywood with a full sheet in the right rear corner
to stagger end jOints. Make sure the tongues are fully seated in
the mating grooves. Fasten the sheathing With 3d galvanized
common nails.
Cut two 2 x 8 rim joists at 119" . Cut nine 2 x 3 joists at 92" .
Assemble the floor frame following the FLOOR FRAMING (page
159), then set it on the skids and measure the diagonals to
make sure the frame IS square. Fasten the jOists to the skids
with 16d galvanized common nails.
Frame the rear wall : Cut one 2 x 4 bottom plate and one top
plate at 119". Cut ten 2 x 4 studs at 92%" . Assemble the wall
uSing 16" on-center spacing, as shown in the REAR FRAMING
(page 159). Raise the wall and fasten it flush to the rear edge
of the floor, then brace the wall in position with 2 x 4 braces.
Build the side walls following the SIDE FRAMING (page 158).
The two side walls are identical. Each has a bottom and top
plate at 88" and seven studs at 92%". Assemble each wall, then
install it and brace It in posi tion.
Cut two 2 x 6 pattern rafters following the RAFTER
TEMPLATE (page 161). Test-fit the rafters and make any
necessary adjustments. Use one of the patterns to mark and
cut the remaining 10 rafters. Cut the 1 x 8 ridge board at
119". Mark the rafter layout onto the ridge and the front and
rear wall plates following the ROOF PLAN (page 160). Note:
Before installing the ralters on the long sides of the shed (door
face and wall parallel to door), first install siding. The rafters
overhang the siding on the long sides, therefore the siding (at
least on those sides) needs to be in place before the ralters
are installed.
Frame the front wall following the FRONT FRAMING (page
159): Cut two plates at 119", cut eight studs at 92%", and cut
two jack studs at 79". Install the 2 x 6 built-up header (add a
layer of Y;' plywood as a spacer between the 2 x 6s), then add
three cripple studs. Raise and fasten the front wall, then install
the double top plates along all four walls.
Cover the shed exterior with y," siding, starting at the
left end of the rear wall. Butt full sheets up against the rafters,
lett ing the bottom edges overhang the floor frame by at least
1". Complete the front wall , and then the side walls, keeping
the bottom edges even with the sheets on the front and side
walls. Add Z-flashing, and continue the siding to the tops of the
end rafters.
Sf!ed Projects 163
Install the rafters and ridge board. Cut four 2 x 4 collar
ties at 64", mitering the ends at 33S. Fasten the collar ties
between each set of the four inner rafters, using 10d common
nails. Make sure the ties are level and extend close to but not
above the top edges of the rafters. Note: Do not install collar
ties if you're building an attic floor.
Adding an Attic
TO bUild an attic floor for storage, cut six 2 x 4 or 2 x 6 floor
joists at 95" (use 2 x 6s if you plan to store heavy items in the
attic). If necessary, clip the top corners of the joists so they
won't extend above the tops of the rafters. Fasten the jOists
to the rafters and wall plates with 10d common nails (photo
A). At the end rafters, Install 2" blocking against the rafters,
then attach the joists to the blocking and gable wall studs.
Mark the gable wall stud layout onto the Sidewall top
plates. Use a level to transfer the marks to the end rafters. Cut
each of the 102 x 4 studs to fit, mitering the top ends at 33.5' .
Install the studs. Note: The center stud on each wall is located
to the rear side of the ridge board. If desired, frame in the attic
floor at this time (see Adding an Attic, below).
Frame access openings with two header joists
spanning neighboring floor joists (photo B). For heavier
storage, double up the floor joists on either side of the
opening, then use doubled headers to frame the opening.
Join doubled members with pails of 10d common nails
every 16" . Cover the joists with 'Ii' plywood fastened with
3d nails to complete the attic floor.
Enclose the rafter bays over the walls with 2 x 6 blocking.
Bevel the top edge of the blocking at 33S so it will be flush
with the rafters. Cut the blocks to fit snugly between pairs of
rafters and install them. Install 1 x 8 fascia boards at the ends
of the rafters along the eaves, and over the siding on the gable
ends. Keep the fascia W' above the tops of the rafters.
construct the two doors from 2 x 4 bracing and '/," siding,
as shown In the DOOR DETAIL (page 161). The doors are
identical. Each measures 48W' x 80'li' . Mortise the butt hinges
into the door brace and wall frame, and install the doors leaving
a 'f," gap between the doors and along the top and bottom.
Apply 'Ii' roof sheathing, starting at the bottom corner of
either roof plane. The sheathing should be flush with the tops of
the fascia boards. Add the metal drip edge, building paper, and
asphal t shingle roofing following the steps on pages 55 to 57.
Trim the corners of the shed with 1 x 2s. Also add a piece
of 1 x 2 trim on one of the doors to cover the gap between the
doors. Install 1 x 4 trim horizontally to cover the Z-flashing at
the side walls. Install door locks and hardware as desired.
Sf!ed Projects 165
I Gothic Playhouse
layhouses are all about stirring the imagination.
Loaded with fancy Ameri can Gothic detail s, this
charming littl e hOllse makes a special play horne for
kids and an attractive backyard feat ure for adults.
I n additi on to its architectural c haracter (see Gothic
Style, helmv), what makes thi s a great playhouse
des ign is its size- the enc losed house measures
5 X 7Y, ft. and includes a 5-ft .-tall door and pl enty
of headroom inside. Thi s means your ki ds will likely
"outgrow" the pl ayhouse before they get too bi g for it.
And you can ahvays give the hOll se a second li fe as a
storage shed.
At the front of the hOllse is a 30" -deep porch
complete \"l ith real decking boards and a nicely
decorated railing. Each side \,vail features a
window and flower box, and the "foundation" has
the look of stone created by wood blocks appli ed
to the floor framing. All of these fea tures are
opt ional, but each one adds to the charm of thi s
well-appointed playhouse.
As shown here, t he floor of the playhouse is
anchored to fou r 4 X 4 posts buri ed in the ground .
Gothic Style
The architectural style known as American Gothic
(also called Gothic ReVival and Carpenter Gothic)
dates back to the 1830s and essentially marks
the beginning of the Victorian period in American
home design. Adapted from a similar movement in
England, Gothic style was inspired by the ornately
decorated stone cathedrals found throughout
Europe. The style qUickly evolved in America
as thrifty carpenters learned to re-create and
reinterpret the original decorative motifs using wood
instead of stone.
American Gothic's most characteristic feature
is the steeply pitched roof with fancy scroll-cut
barge boards, or verge boards, which gave the style
its popular nickname, "gingerbread." Other typical
features found on Gothic homes (and the Gothic
Playhouse) Include board-and-batten siding, doors
and windows shaped with Gothic arches, and spires
or finials adorning roof peaks.
As an alternati ve, you can set the pl ayhouse on 4 X 6
timber skids. Anot her custom variat ion you mi ght
consider is in the styling of the verge boards (the
gingerbread gable trim) . Instead of using the provided
pattern , you can creClte a curdboard template of your
own des ign. Architectural pl Cl n and pattern books
from the Got hi c period are full of inspiration for
decorati ve ideas .
Sf!ed Projects 167
Cutting List
Description Quantity/ Size Material Description Quantity/ Size Material
Foundation/ Floor Bolls 1 @ ~ i o . Wooden sphere,
Droinage material I cu. yd . Compoctible grovel
pressure-tr eated
Foundation posts 4 @ field meosure 4 x 4 pressure-treated
lundscope ti mbers Sheothing 4 sheets@4xB' W' exlerior-grode plywood
Concrete Field meosure 3,000 psi concrete
roof sheothing
Rim joists 3@10', I @B' 2 x 12 pressure-trea ted,
11# building po per I roll
roted for ground contoct Orip edge 40 lineor ft. Metol drip edge
Floor jOists I @IO', 1@B' 1 x 6 pressure-treoted Shingles 1 squore Aspholt shingles - 110#
Box sills (rim joists) 1@11' 2 x 4 pressure-treated
per sq. min.
Floor sheothing 1 shee ts @ 4 x B' 'I," ext.-grode plywood
Fasteners & Hardware
Porch decking I@IO' 1 x 6 pressure-treated decking
16d golvanized 3V, lbs_
(ommon noils
Foundation uslonesu 7@10' 'I, x 6" treoted decking
w/rodius edge (no.),
16d common noils I Ibs.
roted for ground con toet 10d common noils V, lb.
Ifor double top plotes)
Woll froming & roilings 19@ 11' 1 x 4
10d golvanized finish/ 4 Ibs .
Rafters & spacers 7@ 11' 1 x 4
((Ising nails
Bd golvanized I lb.
Ridge boord I @B' Ix6
(ommon nails
Collor ties I@IO' Ix4
Bd box noils 1lbs.
Exterior Finishes
Bd golvanized siding noils Bibs.
Siding, window boxes 16@ 10' I x B pressure-treoted
1" galvanized roofing nails 3 Ibs .
& door trim or cedor
2" deck screws I lb.
Battens & trim 30@B' 1 x 2 pressure-treated
(for porch decking)
or cedar
6d golvanized finish noils 1lbs.
Door ponel, verge boords & 10@10' 1 x 6 pressure-treated
3W' galvanized
fascia or cedar
24 screws
waod screws
Door broces, trim 1@10' 1 x 4 pressure-treated
11// galvanized
&. roiling trim or cedar
12 screws
wood screws
Roiling bolusters 4@B' 2 x 2 pressure-treated
Dowel screws (for spire) Galvanized dowel screws
or cedar
3 screws
Window stops 1@B' s" pressure-treated or cedar
log screws w/wushers
1@6" W' galvanized log screws
quarter-round molding Door hinges w/screws 3 Corrosion-resistant hinges
Window glozing (optionol) 4@10x9V," V, " plustic glozing
Door hundle/lotch
Spire Exterior wood glue
I@B' 4 x 4 pressure-treated
Cleor exterior coulk (for
optional window pones)
I @4' 1 x 2 pressure-treated
Molding 1@4' Cop molding,
Construction adhesive
pressure-trea ted
1 x 6
on porch
End joist
+ ______ 1 x 6 Ridge
. , 84Y, ------+-
2 x 4 Spacer
2Y/ Both ends
V? Plywood
15# Roofing felt
Green sh ingles
I lJ.l----;::-- 1 x 8 Boards wi th
1 x 2 Bollens
2 x 12
I I 4 - 4 x 4s
: I ;-Sel in (oncrete
I : . below froslline
Rim joisls, trealed
2 x 6 Joists
.16" O.C
CuI robbet
on bock side
for optional
plastic window pones
Y4 x 6" Rod. edge
decking blocks
Si!cd Projects 169
: 2 x 2 Railing posls

g----, 1 x 6 Oe(kin
overhangs fro
by 1
14" '0 (OV
foundation HS


1- - 1-
I /
1 Square = 1"
{(ulfrom I x 61



24" R.O.
24" R.O.
2x 4
I x 2

ICullrom 1 x 4)



2 x 4 Ilud,20" 0.(,-


4x 4
on 0114 sides
3" Ball
4x 4Posi
Top View
1 x 1 Slops _ _ 4 frome
Door '9'
4" Sq. cutout
3" Sq. cutout
-+,1,-- 11" --'+-f
4- 1 x 8son2 x 4frome
1 x 2 Trim
1 x 2 Trim
;:--- W Gop


\ j
_ (Osing/finish

Gol .
8d Gol.. , , noil
Door arch trim
hullrom 1 x 8)
I" Grid
Door arch cui
(\4" in from
(Osing/siding '" I 1 I 1 "'"
x 4 Blocking/plate
1 x8Siding ---------./
t \'-------1 x 8 Siding
wY 1,1" 1 x2Bollen
(centered over siding joint)
Si!cd Projects 17 1
1+-',-----1 x 6 Ridge boord
-----',-----"<--- 1 x 4 Collar lie
---''<--- 2 x Hofter
2 x 4 (ross piece
2 x Block
22'h" R.O.
2x 4Block
2 x 4 Door Studs 2 x 4 Hollom Plate
2 x 6 POrth joi st (even spocing )
- 2 x 12 End ioisl
lA" Plywood floor sheathing (indicoted wi th dolled lines)
- 2x l2
Hooder l
ioisl / \
J 4 x 4 Foundahon post
(enler line on ralter
84W /
1 ~ 6
" /
\ 2X6 JOist!
r- 2 x 4 Rafter
2 x 4 Top plates
~ -
Si!cd Projects 173
20 11
V Roolslope
(ullrom 1 x 8's
I How to Build the Gothic Playhouse
Set up perpendicular mason's lines and batter boards
to plot out the excavation area and the post hole locations,
as shown in FLOOR FRAMING PLAN (page 173). Excavate and
grade the construction area, preparing for a 4"-thick gravel
base. Dig 12"-dia. holes to a depth below the frost line, plus 4".
Add 4" of gravel to each hole. Set the posts in concrete so they
extend about 10" above the ground.
Make sure the frame is square and level (prop it up
temporarily), and then fasten it to the posts with 16d
galvanized common nails.
After the concrete dries (overnight) add compactable gravel
and tamp It down so it is 4" thick and flat. Cut two 2 x 12 rim
jOists for the floor frame, two 2 x 12 end joists and one header
JOISt. Cut four 2 x 6 Joists at 57" and two porch Joists at 27%".
Assemble the floor frame with 16d galvanized common nails
Cover the interior floor with plywood, starting at the rear
end. Trim the second piece so it covers % of the header JOIst.
Install the 1 x 6 porch decking starting at the front edge and
leaving a %" gap between boards. Extend the porch decking
1 Yo" beyond the front and sides of the floor frame.
Sf!ed Projects 175
Frame the side walls as shown in the SI DE FRAMING
(page 173) and FLOOR PLAN (page 170). Each wall has four
2 x 4 studs at 48%", a top and bottom plate at 80", and a 2 x
4 window header and sill at 24". Install the horizontal 2 x 4
blocking, spaced evenly between the plates. Install only one
top plate per wall at this time.
TO frame the front wall, cut two treated bottom plates at
15%", two end studs at 51Yi' and two door studs at 59" . Cut a
2 x 4 crosspiece and two braces, mitering the brace ends at
45. Cut SIX 2 x 4 blocks at 12%".Assemble the wall as shown
in the FRONT FRAMING (page 172). Raise the front wall and
fasten it to the floor and sidewall frames.
Build the rear wall. Raise the side and rear wails, and fasten
them to each other and to the floor frame. Add double top
plates. Both sidewall top plates should stop flush with the end
stud at the front of the wall.
Cut one set of 2 x 4 pattern rafters following the RAFTER
TEMPLATE (page 174). Test-fit the rafters and make any
necessary adjustments. use one of the pattern rafters to
mark and cut the remaining eight rafters. Also cut four 2 x 4
spacers- these should match the rafters but have no blJd's-
mouth cuts.
Cut the ridge board to size and mark the rafter layout
following the SIDE FRAMING, and then screw the rafters to the
ridge. Cut five 1 x 4 collar ties, mltellng the ends at 31. Fasten
the collar ties across each set of rafters so the ends of the ties
are fl ush with the rafter edges. Fasten the 2 x 4 crosspiece
above the door to the two end rafters. Install remaining cross-
pieces as In the FRONT/REAR FRAMING.
Cut the arched sections of door trim from 1 x 8 lumber,
following the arch template (page 171). Install the arched
pieces and straight 1 x 2 side pieces flush with the inside of
the door opening. Wrap the window openings with lipped 1 x
6 boards, and then frame the outsides of the openings with 1
x 2 tllm. lnstall a 1 x 2 batten over each siding Joint as shown
in step 10.
Install the 1 x 8 siding boards so they overlap the floor
frame by 1" at the bottom and extend to the tops of the side
walls, and to the tops of the rafters on the front and rear walls.
Gap the boards 'Ii', and fasten them to the framing with pairs
of 8d galvanized casing nails or siding nails. Install the four
2 x 4 spacers on top of the si ding at the front and rear so they
match the rafter placement.
Build the 1 x 2 window frames to fit snugly inside the
trimmed openings. Assemble the parts with exterior wood
glue and galvanized finish nails. If desired, cut a Yo" rabbet in
the back side and Install plastic windowpanes with silicone
caulk. Secure the window frames in the openings with '1."
quarter-round molding. Construct the window boxes as shown
in the WINDOW BOX DETAIL (page 174). Install the boxes below
the windows with 1%" screws.
Sf!ed Projects 177
TO build the spire, start by drawing a line around a 4 x 4
post, 9" from one end. Draw cutting lines to taper each side
down to W', as shown in the SPIRE DETAIL (page 170). Taper
the end with a circular saw or handsaw, and then cut off the
point at the 9" mark. Cut the post at 43". Add 1 x 2 trim and
cap molding as shown in the detail, mitering the ends at the
corners. Drill centered pilot holes into the post, balls, and paint,
and join the parts with dowel screws.
Add a 1 x 2 block under the front end of the ridge board.
Center the spire at the roof peak, drill pilot holes, and anchor
the post with 6" lag screws. Cut and install the 1 x 6 front
fascia to run from the spire to the rafter ends, keeping the
fascia Y/ above the tops of the rafters. Install the rear fascia
so it covers the ridge board. Cut and Install two 1 x 4 brackets
to fit between the spire post and front fascia, as shown In the
TO cut the verge boards, enlarge the VERGE BOARD
TEMPLATE (page 170) on a photocopier so the squares
measure 1". Draw the pattern on a 1 x 6. Cut the board wi th
a Jigsaw Test-fit the board and adjust as needed. Use the
cut board as a pattern to mark and cut the remaining verge
boards. Install the boards over the front and rear fascia, then
add picture molding along the top edges.
cut the 1 x 6 eave fascia to fi t between the verge boards,
and install it so it will be flush with the top of the roof
sheathing. Cut and install the roof sheathing. Add bUilding
paper, rnetal drip edge, and asphalt shingles, following the
steps on page 56.
Mark the deck post locations 1%" in from the ends and
front edge of the porch decking, as shown in the FLOOR PLAN.
Cut four 4 x 4 railing posts at 30". Bevel the top edges of the
posts at 45, as shown in DECK RAILING DETAIL (page 170).
Fasten the posts to the decking and floor frame Wi th 3y,"
screws. Cut six 2 x 4 treated blocks at 3y,". Fasten these to the
bottoms of the posts, on the sides that will receive the railings.
construct the door with 1 x 6 boards fastened to 2 x 4
Z-bracing, as shown in the DOOR DETAIL. Fasten the boards
to the bracing with glue and 6d finish nails. Cut the square
notches and the top of the door with a jigsaw. Add the 2 x 2
brace as shown. Install the door with two hinges, leaving a %"
gap all around. Add a knob or latch as desired.
Assemble the railing sections following the DECK RAILING
DETAIL. Each section has a 2 x 4 top and bottom rail, two
1 x 2 nailers, and 2 x 2 balusters spaced so the edges of the
balusters are no more than 4" apart. You can build the sections
completely and then fasten them to the posts and front wall, or
you can construct them in place starting with the rails. Cut the
shaped trim boards from 1 x 4 lumber, using a Jigsaw. Notch
the rails to fit around the house battens as needed.
Make the foundation "stones" by cutting 116 6"-lengths of
% x 6 deck boards (the pieces in the top row must be ripped
down 1 "). Round over the cut edges of all pieces wi th a router.
Attach the top row of stones uSing construction adhesive and
6d galvanized finish nails. Install the bottom row, starting with a
half-piece to create a staggered joint pattern. If deSired, finish
the playhouse interior with plywood or tongue-and-groove
Sf!ed Proj ects 179
I Timber-frame Shed
imber-frami ng is a traditional style of building that
uses a s impl e framework of heavy ti mber posts a nd
beams con nec ted vvith hand-carved joint s. From the
olltside, a timber-frame building looks like a standard
sti ck- frame st ruct ure, but on t he inside, t he stout ,
rough-sawn framing members evoke the look and feel
of an 18th-century workshop. Th is 8 X IO-ft . shed has
the sa me basic design used in tradi tional timber- frame
structures but wit h joi nts that are easy to make.
In addition to the [Taming, some notabJe features
of thi s shed Clre its simpli city and proportions. It's a
ni cely symmetri cal building with full -height vvalls and
an Clttract ively steep-pitched roof, somethi ng you seldom
fi nd on manufactured kit sheds. The clean styling gives
it a traditional , rustic look, but also makes the shed ideal
for adding custom detail s. Install a skyli ght or \vindows to
bri ghten the interior, or perhaps cut a crescent moon into
the door in the style of old-fashioned backyard privies.
The materia ls fo r this project were carefu ll y
chosen to e nhance the traditional styling. The 1 x 8
tongue-and-groove s idi ng and all exteri or trim boards
are made from rough-sawn cedar, giving the shed a
nat ural, rust ic qua lity. The door is hand-built from
rough cedar boards and incl udes exposed Z-bracing,
a classic outbui ld ing detail. As shown herc, the roof
frame is made with standard 2 X 4s, but if you' re willing
to pay a little more to improve t he appearance, you can
use rough-cut 2 x 4s or 4 X 4s for the roof frami ng.
Anot he r option to cons ider is traditi onal spaced
sheath ing instead of plywood for the roof deck.
Spaced sheathing cons ists of I X 4 boards nail ed
perpendicular to the roof frame, with a I Y2" gap
between boards . The roof shingles are nail ed directl y
to the sheathing without building paper in between,
creat ing a n attractive ceiling of exposed boards and
shingles ins ide the s hed.
Sf!ed Projects 181
Cutting List
Description Quantity/ Size Material Description Quantity/ Size Material
Foundation Sollit vents (optional) 4@4xI2" Louver with bug screen
Drainage malerial I cu. yard Compactible grovel Flashing (door I 4 linear ft. Galvanized - 18 gouge
Skids 3@10' 6 x 6 treated timbers Roofing
Floor Framing Roof sheathing 6 sheets@4x8' 'I, ex t.grode plywood
Rim joists 2@ 10' 2 x 6 pressure-treated Cedar shingles 1.7 squares
Joist 9@8' 2 x 6 pressuretreoted 15# bUilding paper 140 sq. ft.
Joist clip angles 18 3 x 3 x 3" x 18gouge Roof vents (op ti onal I 2 units
Floor sheathing 3 sheets@4x8' Y. tongue-&-groove
Frome 2 @7' 'I. x 4'1." (octuol) S4S cedar
ext.grode plywood
Wall Framing
Stops 2@7' I x 2 S4S cedar
Posts 6@8' 4 x 4 rough-sown cedor 1@4'
Window pasts
2@4' 4 x 4 rough-sown cedm Panel material 7 @7' I x 6 T&G Vjoint
Girts 2@10' 4 x 4 rough-sown cedor
rough-sown cedar
2@8' lbroce I @8'to 1 x 6 rough-sown cedar
2@ 10' 4 x 6 rough-sown cedar
2@8' Strop hinges
8@2' 4 x 4 rough-sown cedm Trim
S@7' 1 x 3 rough-sown cedar
Post bases 6, with nails Simpson 8C40 Flashing 42" metal flashing
Post-beam connectors 8 pieces, with nails Simpson LCE Fasteners
L-connectors 4, with nails Simpson A34 60d common nails 16 nails
Additional posts 6@8' 4 x 4 roughsown cedor 20d cammon nails 32 nails
Roof Framing 16d galvanized cammon nails 3'I, lbs.
Rafters 12@ 7' 2 x 4 I Od cammon nails I lb.
Collor ties 2@10' 2 x 4 10d galvanized casing nails '1, lb.
Ridge boord I @IO' 2 x 6 8d galvanized box nails I 'j, Ibs.
Metal anchors - rafters 8, with nails Simpson HI 8d galvanized finish nails 7 Ibs.
Gobleend blocking 4@ 7' 2 x 2 8d box nails 'I. lb.
Exterior Finishes 6d galvanized finish nails 40 noils
Siding 2@ 14' I x 8 Vjoint 3d golvanized finish noils 50 noils
8@ 12' rough-sown cedor
1 W' joist hanger nails 72 nails
10@ 10'
29@ 9'
2W' deck screws 2S screws
Corner trim 8@9' I x 4 roughsown cedor
1 W' wood screws 50 screws
Fascia 4@7' 1 x 6 rough-sown cedar
1Je- galvanized rooling nails 2 Ibs.
2@ 12' Yo" x 6" log screws, wlwoshers 16 screws
Fascia trim 4@7' 1 x 2 rOlJgh-sown cedar '/," x 6" log screws, wlwoshers
2@ 12'
Construction adhesive 4 tubes
Subfoscio 2@ 12' I x 4 pine
Note: Additional posts tIloy be added as a safety
Pl ywood soffit I sheet4x8' Yo" cedor or fir plywood
precaution to prevent eave beam defiectio'l'l.
2 x 6 Ridge 2 x 4 (ollar lie
2 x 4 Rofter
Melal connector
24" 0.(.-----,--,."')';
:sJ 12
2 x 8 Ikylighl
4 x 6 Beam
4x 4Post


3' .2"
4 x 4 Brace
4 x 4 Header
notch 10 post
4 x 4 Girl ,
notched 10 posl
y." Ext. ply.

floor joist
16" 0.(.
6 x 6 Treated
timber skid
2x 6Ridge
24" 0.(.
2 x 8 Ikylighl
I 2 V;; frome-
2 x 4 Collar lie
4 x 6 Beam
4 x 4 Broce
4 x 4 Girl,
notched to post
Post bose (onneelor
@ eoch post
Yo Exl. ply.
2 x 6 Treated
floor joist 16" O.c
6 x 6 Treated
limber skid
2x 6R idge
alter 2x 4R
24" 0.( .-

D 2 x 4C
4x68 eom
OSI. /
4x 4P
4x 46
10 p

2x 6R
2x 4R
24" 0.(
2 x 4C ollorlie -
4x68 eom
4x 48 roce ----
4x 4P osl
4x 46
10 p

rough openinf
/ Posl bose !Onneelor
@ each posl ________
Si!cd Projects 183
2 x 6 Ridge
y? N Plywood sheathing
2 x 4 Roher 24" O.C
2 x 4 Collor lie
4 x 6 Timber holl
lap joint 01 (orner
1 x 2
l x 6Fosdo
4x bBeom
4x 4PosI
4 x 4 Girl ,
notched into
(orner posts
I x 8
T&6 siding
%" Exl. ply.
2 x 6 Treated
floor joisl16" O.L
6 x 6 Treated
limber skid
6x 6
limber skid __
2x 6

16" O.C "
Treated b
rimjoisl -" '= .::
" J

3' 4" 3' 4"
:: '
8' 0"
' :
Dimensions 10 outsides of joists

Roof slope
2 x 4 Rofter
shown dashed
r----------------- ----l--4 __
4x 4PosI
4 x 4 Additional post
4x 4Posi S> 4x 4PosI
Rough Opening
3' 2" 2' S"
8' 0"
Dimensions 10 outsides of joists
' Optional
Asphalt shingles
1 x 2 Trim
1 x 6 Fosdo
Ii- Flashing
+1+-- I x 8 T&G siding
[\ c"i-t++-++I+-- Homemade door
1+--- 1 x 4 Trim

6 x 6 Treated
limber skid
1 x 2Trim
x 6Foscio
I x 8
1&6 siding
1+--- 1 x 4 Trim
6 x 6 Treated
limber sk id
I Asphal
shingle s
Skylig hi
I x 2 Trim
I x 6 Fascia /
I x 8
T&6 si ding -
I x 4

6x 6
skid -
I x 2 T rim
I x 6 F osda
2x 4M ullion
wi ndow
rim ---- I x 3 T
I x 8
T&G sid ing
rim I x 4 T
6x 6T
limber 5
1111 I
Si!cd Projects 185
%" Plywood
1 x 2 Trim
2 x 4 Rafter
1 x 6 Fascia
1 x 8 T&G siding
,---------- 4 x 4 POll
,------1 x 3 Trim
800rd door
w/ 1 x 6 broce
1 x 2SIop
*" Frome
'---------1 x 3 Trim
'---------------1 x 8 T&G siding
%" Plywood sheothing
2 x 4 Roher 24" O.C
Metol anchors, each rolle
eoch corner
4 x 6 Beom,
half-lop joint ot corner
Soffit yent --__
1 x 2 Trim
1 x 4 Subloscio
1 x 6 Foscio
1'1" Plywood soffit
4x 6Beom
1 x 8 T&G siding
4 x 4Posl --------------'

3' 0"
i--r Hold bock hom door edge
.\ ",,-
L-, t-
Strop hinge
1 x 6 Boards glued
ond mewed to 1 x 6 ponel
1 x 6T&GVJl
boords, vertical
I How to Build the Timber-frame Shed
prepare the foundation site with a 4"deep layer of compacted
and leveled gravel. Cut three 6 x 6 treated timber skids (120").
Place the skids follOWing the FLOOR FRAMING PLAN (page 184).
Lay a straight 2 x 4 across the skids and test with a level.
Position the floor frame on top of the skids and measure
the diagonals to make sure it's square. Install joist clip angles
at each joist along the two outer skids wi th galvanized nails.
Toenail each joist to the center skid.
Cut two 2 x 6 rim joists (120") and nine joists (93").
Assemble the floor frame with galvanized nails, as shown in
the FLOOR FRAMING PLAN. Check the frame to make sure it is
square by measuring the diagonals.
Install the tongueandgroove plywood floor sheathing,
starting with a full sheet at one corner of the frame. The
flooring should extend all the way to the outside edges of the
floor frame.
Sf!ed Projects 187
To prepare the wall posts, cut six 4 x 4 posts (90'/,"),
making sure both ends are square. On the four corner posts,
mark for 3Y,"-long x 1 Y/-deep notches (to accept the girts) on
the two adjacent inside faces of each post. start the notches
46%" from the bottom ends of the posts.
Position the post bases so the posts will be flush with the
outsides of the shed floor. Install the bases with 16d galvanized
common nails. The insides of the door posts should be 29"
from the floor sides. Brace each post so it is perfectly plumb,
and then fasten it to ItS base uSing the base manufacturer's
recommended fasteners.
Mark the door frame posts for notches to receive a girt at
46%" and for the door header at 82"; see the FRONT FRAMING
ELEVATION (page 183). Remove the waste from the notch areas
with a circular saw and clean up with a broad wood chisel.
Test-fit the notches to make sure the 4 x 4 girts will fit snugly
cut two 4 x 6 beams at 10 ft. and two at 8 ft. Notch the
ends of the beams for half-lap joints: Measure the width and
depth of the beams and mark notches equal to the width x
% the depth. Orient the notches as shown in the FRAMING
ELEVATIONS (page 183). Cut the notches with a handsaw, then
test-fit the JOints, and make fine adjustments with a chisel.
set an 8-ft. beam onto the front wall posts and tack it
in place with a 16d nail at each end. Tack the other 8-ft. beam
to the back posts. Then, position the 10 ft. beams on top of
the short beam ends, forming the half-lap joints. Measure the
diagonals of the front wall frame to make sure it's square, and
then anchor the beams with two 60d galvanized nails at each
corner (drill pilot holes for the nails).
cut eight 4 x 4 corner braces (20"), mitering the ends at
45. Install the braces flush with the outsides of the beams
and corner posts, uSing two 3(," x 6" lag screws (with washers)
driven through counterbored pilot holes.
Reinforce the beam connections with a metal post-beam
connector on the outside of each corner and on both sides of
the door posts, using the recommended fasteners. Install an
L -connector on the inside of the beam-to-beam jOints; see the
EAVE DETAIL (page 186).
Measure between the posts at the notches, and cut the
4 x 4 girts to fit. To allow the girts to meet at the corner posts,
make a 1 y," x 1 y," notch at both ends of the rear wall girts and
the outside ends of the front wall girts. Install the girts with
construction adhesive and two 20d nails driven through the
outsides of the posts (make pilot holes). Cut and install the 4 x
4 door header in the same fashion.
Sf!ed Projects 189
Frame the roof: Cut two pattern rafters using the RAFTER
TEMPlATE (page 184). Test-fit the patterns, and then cut the
remaining ten rafters. Cut the 2 x 6 ridge (120"). Install the
rafters and ridge using 24" on-center spacing. Cut four 2 x 2S
to extend from the roof peak to the rafter ends, and install
them flush with the tops of the rafters; see the GABLE
OVERHANG DETAIL (page 186). Add framing connectors at
the rafter-beam connections (except the outer rafters). Note:
if desired, you can add framing for a skylight.
Install the 1 x 8 siding on the front and rear walls so it runs
from the 2 x 2s down to %" below the bottom of the floor
frame. Fasten the siding with 8d corrosion-resistant fi nish
nails or siding nails. Don't nail the siding to the door header
in this step.
Cut four 2 x 4 collar ties (58"), mitering the tops of the
ends at 45'. Install the ties y," below the tops of the rafters, as
Cover the rafter ends along the eaves with 1 x 4
subfascia, flush with the tops of the rafters; see the EAVE
DETAIL. Install the 1 x 6 fascia and 1 x 2 trim at the gable ends,
then along the eaves, mitering the corner joints. Keep the
fascia and trim Y/ above the rafters so it will be flush wi th the
roof sheathing.
Rip the plywood soffit panels to fit between the wall
framing and the fascia, and Install them with 3d galvanized box
nails; see the EAVE DETAIL
19 ,
construct the door frame from 'I." x 4%" stock. Cut the
head Jamb at 37W' and the side jambs at 81 ". Fasten the head
jamb over the ends of the side jambs with 2W' deck screws.
Install the frame in the door opening, using shims and 10d
galvanized casing nails. Add 1 x 2 stops to the jambs, 'I." from
the outside edges.
Deck the roof with '/," plywood sheathing, starting at
the bottom corners. Cover the sheathing with bUilding paper,
overhanging the 1 x 2 fascia trim by 'I.". Install the cedar
shingle roofing or asphal t shingles following the steps on
pages 56 to 59. Include roof vents, if desired (they're a good
idea). Finish the roof at the peak with a 1 x ridge cap.
Build the door with seven pieces of 1 x 6 siding cut at
80%" . Fi t the boards together, then mark and trim the outer
pieces so the door is 36" wide. Install the 1 x 6 Z-bracing
with adhesive and 1%" wood screws, as shown in the DOOR
DETAI L (page 186). Install flashing over the outside of the door,
then add 1 x 3 trim around both sides of the door opening, as
shown In the DOOR JAMB DETAIL (page 186). Hang the door
with three strap hinges.
Sf!ed Projects 191
I Service Shed
his versatile shelter st ructure is actual ly two
projects in one. Us ing the same primary des ign,
you can build an open-s ided nrev,lood shelte r, or
you can add doors a nd a shel f and create a secured
shed that's pe rfect for trash cans or recyclabl es. Both
projects have four verti cal corne r posts, a rectangular
floor frame decked with 2 X 6s, and gapped side slats
that provide cross venti lation. The plyvvood, s hcd-
style roof is covered \vith cedar sh ingles, but yo u ca n
substitute wit h a ny type of roofing.
To <Jdapt the service shed for use as a closed
storage shed, you can add a center post (mostly to
function as a nail e r) and attach slats to crea te a rear
wall. With two more posts in the front , you may define
door openings. The adapted shed won't offer secure
storage for va luabl e items like tools, but it will prevent
dogs, squirrel s, raccoons a nd other pests from gett ing
into your trashcans.
As for materi als, you can save a lot of money by
building thi s project with pressure-t reated lumber.
Stain or pai nt the gree ni sh lumber to c hange its
colori ng or leave it bare and allO\\' it to weat he r to a
sil very gray. If you prefer t he look of ceda r lumber,
use it for everythi ng but the shelter's floor frame and
decking. Also, you might \"/a nt to set the corner posts
on conc rete blocks or stones to prevent t he ced<:lr from
rotting prematurely due to ground cont<:l ct.
Seasoning Firewood
Proper seasoning, or drying, of firewood takes time. After freshly cut logs are split, the drying process can take SIX to
12 months, given the right condi tions. Stacking split wood under a shelter wi th one or more open sides is Ideal because it
protects the wood from rain and snow moisture while letting airflow through the stack to hasten drying.
You can test wood for seasoning by its look and feel and by how it burns. The ends of dry logs show cracks and
typically have a grayish color, while unseasoned wood still looks freshly cut and may be moist to the touch. Fresher wood
also makes a heavy, dull thud when pieces are knocked together When it comes to burning, dry wood lights easily and
burns consistently, while wet wood tends to burn out if unattended and often smokes excessively as the Internal moisture
turns to steam.
If you order split firewood from a supplier and can't guarantee how well seasoned It IS, have It delivered at least six
months before the start of the burning season. This gives the wood plenty of time to dry out. Regarding quantity, a "cord"
of neatly stacked split logs measures 128 cubic feet- a stack that's 4 ft. high, 4 ft. deep, and 8 ft. long. A "half cord"
measures 64 cubic feet.
Sf!ed Proj ects 193
Cutting List
Part Quantity/ Size Quantity/ Size Material Part Quantity/ Size Quantity/ Size Material
Firewood Shed Garbage Shed Firewood Shed Garbage Shed
Framing Shelf & Doors
Side & end 2@10' 2@ 10' 2x4 Shelf I @ 24'1, x 28 '1." lit ext.-grade
floor supporls pressure-l1eated plywood
Cenler floor supporl I @8' 1@8' 2x4 Shelf cleols
1@6' I x 3 cedor
Door pOllels I sheel@4x8' 3// ext.-grode
Floor boords 3@10' 3@ 10' 2x6 plywood
Snles 3@8' I x 4 cedor
Corner posts 4@8' 4@8' 2 x 4 cedor (wide doors)
Headers 2@8' 2@8' 2 x 4 cedor
I@ IO'
Rafters 1@8' 1@8' 2 x 4 cedor
(norr ow door)
I @4' 1@4'
Hinges 6 Exterior hinges
Rear center post
1@4' 2 x 4 cedar
Door handles 3 Ex terior
Door posls 1@8' 2 x 4 cedor
Door ledger I @8' 2 x 4 cedar
lit," x 3" log screws 8, wilh washers 10, wilh washers
End slols 5@8' S@8' I x 6 cedar
Deck screws
Bock slols
5@8' I x 6 cedar
3W 12 12
3" 62 62
Sheolhing I sheel@4x8' I sheel@4x8' 'I."CDX
2'11" 36 48
2" SO 62
Roof edging 2@10' 2@ 10' I x 2 T
1%" 100 160
151 bui lding paper 37 sq. ft. 37 sq. ft.
n .. -
Shingles 25 sq. ft 25 sq. ft. I B" cedar
6d galvanized 30 30
finish nai ls
Roof cop I @8' I @8' I x 4 cedar
3d galvanized lib. lib.
I @8' I @8' I x3 cedor
roofing nails
(orner post
(enter post
for garbage ,hed -
2x 4
(enter supp
2x 4
Side support
2x 4
End support

6' -8"
6' -5"
(enter post
8<1- -I"> '" lor gorb,ge ,hed
n------- ---------- ---------- --------- ------- -------- ------- --------- ---------- ------"" ----------
(orner past
II I 1'--, ________ 1,,11
I I: ""
: Ii i I i-------- I x 6 Reorsl,.,
11,, ::::::: ---------- ---------- ---------- -----.J I I for garbage shed
I I! ! I ""
I I i '--- iii '" I x 6 lidesl,,,
2' 0'
Door panels for garbage shed shown dOlled
H 2'0" ,1)Vl

Dimensians for garbage shed
," "I

(enter post
for garbage shed
2 x 4 Rafters
@ sides and Yl paints
2 x 4 Headers
(orner post
Si! ed Proj ects 195
2 x 4 Header
Cedar shingles over
15# bUilding paper
t Plywood
rool shealhing
2 x 4
Door for
garbage shed
2 2 x 4
I x 6
4 c:::::::::d
End slols --t-Ili+--
1 x 6 Rear slols
lor garbage shed
2x 6
Floor boards -
2 x 4
Floor supports
2 x 4 ledger
for garbage shed
4' -21f{
I l-
----- -----
1 '-9%"
__ L

x 4 End rofters

2 x 4 (enler rofters
Cedar shingles over
IS" building paper
yt Plywood
x 4/ 1 x3
Roof (OP
I x 2
Roof edging
2 x 4 Header
;;::L"':::'=========!"'o;t:hf---- (orner post
1 x 4 Cedar
stiles and roils
," Cedar
plywood ponel
Hold plywood
bock Va"
from edges
j 2x 4Rofter

garbage shed
2 x 4 Posl
1 x 6 Rear SIDls
for garbage shed
1 x 6 Side slols ----,1
Cul2 x 4
Posl ---------'
1 x 4/ 1 x 3
Roof cop
Door panels & shell
lor garbage shed
shown dOlled
,------ III ,------ I 11 I ,----l
I I II I I II U _____ 1
y, Plywood shell
on 1 x 3 deals
lor garbage shed
2 x 6 Floor boards
2 ytdio.
Log screws
@ each post
2 x 4 ledger
lor garbage shed
Rear cenler post
lor garbage shed
I I II I I I I I-----+-
_____ 1 L ______ I ____ ..J I

Cedar shingles
1 x 2 Roof edging
, ,
, ,

! i
! i

, I
, I

! I

2 . W-dio. log screws @ each post
1 x 6 Slots for garbage shed
2 x 4 (enler post for garbage shed
(orner post

,:-=::::::::::: 4

.. i5


(orner post


co:" .

Si! cd Projects 197
I How to Build the Service Shed
construct the oor frame: Cut the side supports, end
supports, and one center support. Fasten the end supports
between the sides with 3W' deck screws, as shown In the
FLOOR FRAMING PLAN (page 195); locate the screws where
they won't interfere with the corner post lag screws (see
Step 4). Fasten the center support between the end supports,
centered between the side supports.
Build the corner posts: Rip two 8-ft. 2 x 4s to 2" in width.
Make an 18cut at about 53", leaving a 43" piece from each
board. Cut two full-width 2 x 4 pieces at 53" and two at 43",
beveling the top ends at 18. Assemble each front post to form
an "L', using the 53" pieces and keeping the angled ends flush;
use 2%" deck screws. Assemble the rear posts the same way,
using the 43" pieces.
Cut twelve 2 x 6 oorboards to length. Make sure the
floor frame IS square, then install the first board at one end,
flush with the outsides of the frame, using 3" deck screws. Use
1" spacers to set the gaps as you install the remaining boards.
Rip the last board as needed. (For the closed shed, create a
1%" x 2" notch for the left door post, starting 26" from the left
end of the floor frame).
Trim the corner posts to length: First, cut the front posts
at 49", measuring from the longest point of the angled ends.
Cut the rear posts at 38%", measuring from the shortest point
of the angled ends. Mark the insides of the posts 1%" from
the bottom ends. Set each post on the floor frame so the
mark is aligned wi th the bottom of the frame, then anchor
the post with two 3" lag screws and washers, driven through
counterbored pilot holes.
TO begin framing the roof, cut two 2 x 4 roof headers at 73".
Bevel the top edges of the headers at 18
using a CIrcular saw
and cutting gUide or a tablesaw (the broad face of the header
should still measure 3Yi'). Position the headers between the
corner posts, flush wi th the outsides of the posts. Also, the
beveled edges should be flush with the post tops. Fasten the
headers to the posts with 2y," deck screws.
Cut two upper and two lower rafters, following the
RAFTER TEMPLATES (page 196). Install the end rafters between
the corner posts, flush with the tops of the posts, using 2%"
deck screws. Install the two center rafters between the headers,
25" in from the end rafters. For the closed shed, cut the 2 x 4
rear center post to run from the bottom of the rear header
down to 1 y," below the bottom of the floor frame (as shown).
Install the center post centered between the corner posts.
Plan the layout of the 1 x 6 slats,
gapping the slats as deSired. On each side,
the bottom slat mounts to the outside of
the floor, covenng the floor from view. The
remaining slats mount to the insides of the
corner posts. Cut the side slats to fit and
install them with 1 %" deck screws. For the
closed shed, cover the rear side with slats,
using the same techniques.
Sf!ed Projects 199
Sheath the roof with a piece of ;;."
exterior plywood cut to 35W' x 81 %".
Overhang the posts by 3(." on all sides, and
fasten the sheathing to the posts, headers,
and rafters with 2" deck screws. Add 1 x 2
tJlm along all edges of the sheathing,
mitering the ends at the corners. Fasten
the trim wi th 6d galvanized fiJilsh nails so
the top edges are flush with the sheathing.
Apply building paper over the sheathing
and trim, overhanging the bottom roof
edge by 1" and the sides by '/," . Install the
cedar shingles (see page 58). Construct
the roof cap with 1 x 3 and 1 x 4 trim
boards. Join the boards to form an ''I.''
using 6d finish nails. Fasten the cap along
the top edge of the roof with 6d nails.
I For the closed shed only, complete the following four steps
Cut the 2 x 2 door ledger at 73". Install the ledger flush
with the top of the floor frame, screwing through the back of
the side support with 2Vi' screws. Cut the 2 x 4 door posts
to fit between the ledger and door header, as shown In the
FLOOR PLAN (page 195). Note: The left post is on edge, and the
right post is flat. Make sure the posts are plumb, and fasten
them with 2'h" screws.
For the door trim, cut four stiles at 41%" and four rails at
18%" from three 8ft. 1 x 4S. Cut two stiles at 41%" and two
rails at 14%" from one 10ft. 1 x 4. Cut two 'I." plywood panels
at 23%" x 40" and one panel at 19%" x 40".
Install 1 x 3 shelf cleats at the desired height, fastening
them to the rear and side slats and the right doorpost. Cut
the 'I." plywood shelf to fit the space and install It with 1%"
deck screws.
Fasten the rails and stiles to the door panels with 1 %"
deck screws, following the DOOR ELEVATION (page 196). Screw
through the backsides of the panels. Install the doors with two
hinges each. use offset sash hinges mounted to the shed posts,
or use standard strap hinges mounted to '1 ... thick blocks.
Sf!ed Projects 20 1
I Metal & Wood Kit Sheds
he foll owing pages walk you t hrough the steps of
building two ne\v sheds from Idts. The meta l shed
measures 8 x 9 ft. and comes \vith every piece in the
main bui ldi ng pre-cut and pre-dri ll ed. All you need is a
ladder and a few hand tools for assembly. The wood shed
is a cedar building \.vith panelized construction-most of
the major clements come in prcasscmblcd sections. The
wall s panels have exterior siding installed, and the roof
sections are already shingled. For both sheds, the pieces
are lightweight and ma neuverable, but it he lps to have at
least t,vo people for RUing everyt hing toget her.
As with most kits, these sheds do not include
foundations as part of the standard pClckage. The met<JI
shed can be built on top of a patio surface or out in the
yard, with or without an optional fl oor. The \,vood shed
comes ",th a complete wood floor, but t he buil ding needs
a standard foundation, such as wooden slzjd, concrete
block, or concrete slab foundation. To help keep either
type of shed level and to reduce rnoisture frorn ground
contact, it's a good idea to bui ld it over a bed of cornpacted
gravel. A 4"-deep bed that extends about 6" beyond the
building footprint makes for a stable foundation and helps
keep the interi or dry throughou t the seasons.
Before you purc hase a shed kit, check wit h your
local buil ding departrnent to learn about restrictions
that affect your project. It's recornrnended- and often
required- that lightvveight rnetal sheds be anchored to
the ground. Shed rnctnufact urers offer different ctnchoring
systems, includi ng cables for tetheri ng the shed into soil,
and concrete anchors for tying into a concrete slab.
Sf!ed Projects 203
I Building a Metal or Wood Kit Shed
If you need an outbuilding but don't have the time
or inclinati on to buil d one from scratch, a ki t shed
is the answer. Toda/s kit sheds are ava il abl e in a
\-vi de ra nge of mate ri als, sizes, and styles- from
snap-together pl asti c lockers to Norwegian pine cCl bins
with di vided-li ght windows Cl nd loads of architectural
detail s. Equall y di verse is the range of quali ty Cl nci
prices for shed kj ts. One thing to keep in mind when
c hoos ing a s hed is that muc h of what you're paying
for is the materi als and the case of installati on. Better
kits arc made with quali ty, long-lasti ng materi als, and
many come large ly preassembled. Most of the featu res
discussed be low "viII have an impact on a shed's cost.
The best pl ace to start shopping for shed kits is
on the I nternet . Large manufac turers and small -s hop
custom designers ali ke have websites featuri ng their
products and avai labl e options. A quic k onli ne sea rch
should help you narrO\v dO\vn your choices to sheds
t hat fi t your needs and budget. From there, you can
visit local dealers or buil ders to vievv assembled
sheds firsthand. \ J\lhen fi guring cos t, be sure to
factor in all aspects of the project, includi ng the
foundation, extra hardware, tools you don't already
own, and paint and ot her fin ishes not included wi th
your kit.
High-tech plastics, like polyethylene
and vinyl are often combined with steel
and other IIgid materials to create tough,
weather-resistant- and washable-
kit bUildings.
If you're looking for something special.
higher-end shed kits allow you to break
With convention without breaking your
budget on a custom-built structure.
Features to Consider
Here are some of the key elements to check out before
purchasing a kit shed:
Shed kits are made of wood, metal, vinyl, various plastic
compounds, or any combination thereof Consider
aesthetics, of course, but also durability and appropriateness
for your climate. For example, check the snow load rating
on the roof If you live in a snowy climate, or inquire about
the material's UV resistance If your shed will receive heavy
sun exposure. The finish on metal sheds is important for
durability. Protective finishes include paint, powder-coating,
and vinyl. For wood sheds, consider all of the materials,
from the framing to the siding, roofing, and trimwork.
Do you want a shed With windows or a skylight? Some
kits come wi th these features, while others offer them as
optional add-ons. For a shed workshop, office, or other
workspace where you'll be spending a lot of time, consider
the livability and practicality of the interior space, and shop
accordingly for special features.
Many kits do not include foundations or floors, and floors
are commonly available as extras. Other elements that
may not be Included:
Paint, stain, etc- Also, some sheds come pre-painted
(or pre-primed), but you won't want to pay extra for a
nice paint job if you plan to paint the shed to match
your house
Roofing- Often the plywood roof sheathing is
included but not the building paper, drip edge,
or shingles.
Most shed kits include hardware (nails, screws) for
assembling the building, but always check this to
make sure.
Many kit manufacturers have downloadable assembly
instructions on their websites, so you can really see what's
involved In putting their shed together. Assembly of wood
sheds varies considerably among manufacturers- the kit
may arrive as a bundle of pre-cut lumber or Wi th screw-
together prefabricated panels. Easy-assembly models
may have wall siding and roof shingles already installed
onto panels.
Some kits offer the option of extending the main building
with extenders, or expansion kits, making it easy to turn
an 8 x 10-ft. shed into a 10 x 12-ft. shed, for example.
Check with the manufacturer for recommended
foundation types to use under their sheds. The
foundations shown in the Building Basics section (page 21)
should be appropriate for most ki t sheds.
Shed hardware kits make it easy to build a shed
from scratch. Using the structural gussets and framing
connectors, you avoid tricky rafter cuts and roof assembly
Many hardware ki ts come with lumber cutting lists so you
can build the shed to the desired size Wi thout using plans.
Sf!ed Proj ects 205
I How to Assemble a Metal Kit Shed
Prepare the building site by leveling and grading as needed,
and then excavating and adding a 4"-thlck layer of compactible
gravel. If desired, apply landscape fabric under the gravel to
inhibit weed growth. Compact the gravel with a tamper and
use a level and a long, straight 2 x 4 to make sure the area IS
flat and level.
Once you've laid out the floor system parts, check to
make sure they're square before you begin fastening them.
Measuring the diagonals to see if they're the same is a qUick
and easy way to check for square.
Note: Always wear work gloves when handling shed parts-
the metal edges can be very sharp. Begin by assembling the
I/oor kit according to the manufacturer's directions- these
will vary quite a bit among models, even within the same
manufacturer Be sure that the I/oor system parts are arranged
so the door is located where you wish it to be. Do not fasten
the pieces at this stage.
Fasten the floor system parts together with kit
connectors once you've established that the floor is square.
Anchor the floor to the site if your kit suggests. Some kits are
designed to be anchored after full assembly is completed.
Begin installing the wall panels according to the
instructions. Most panels are prednlled for fasteners, so the
main trick is to make sure the fastener holes align between
panels and with the floor.
Install the remaining fasteners at the shed corners once
you've established that the corners all are square.
Tack together mating corner panels on at least two
adjacent corners. If your frame stiffeners require assembly,
have them ready to go before you form the corners. With a
helper, attach the frame stiffener ralls to the corner panels.
Layout the parts for assembling the roof beams and the
upper side frames and confirm that they fi t together properly
Then, join the assemblies with the fasteners provided.
Sf!ed Projects 207
Attach the moving and nonmoving parts for the upper
door track to the side frames if your shed has sliding doors.
Fill in the wall panels between the completed corners,
attaching them to the frames wi th the provided fasteners. Take
care not to overdrive the fasteners.
Fasten the shed panels to the top frames, making sure to
that any fasteners holes are aligned and that crimped tabs are
snapped together correctly.
Fasten the doorframe trim pieces to the frames to finish
the door opening. If the fasteners are colored to match the
trim, make sure you choose the correct ones.
Insert the shed gable panels into the side frames and the
door track and slide them together so the fastener holes are
aligned. Attach the panels wi th the provided fasteners.
Fit the main roof beam into the clips or other fittings on
the gable panels. Have a helper hold the free end of the beam.
Position the beam and secure it to both gable ends before
attaching it.
Drive fasteners to affix the roof
beam to the gable ends and install any
supplementary support hardware for the
beam, such as gussets or angle braces.
Sf!ed Projects 209
Begin installing the roof panels at one end, fastening
them to the roof beam and to the top flanges of the
side frames.
As the overlapping roof panels are installed and sealed,
attach the roof cap sections at the roof ridge to cover the
panel overlaps. Seal as directed. Note: Completing one section
at a time allows you to access subsequent sections from
below so you don't risk damaging the roof
Apply weatherstripping tape to the top ends of the roof
panels to seal the Joints before you attach the overlapping
roof panels. If your kit does not include weatherstripping tape,
look for adhesive-backed foam tape In the weatherstripPing
products section of your local building center.
Attach the peak caps to cover the openings at the
ends of the roof cap and then Install the roof trim pieces at
the bottoms of the roof panels, tucking the flanges or tabs
into the roof as directed. Install plywood floor, according to
manufacturer Instructions.
Assemble the doors, paying close attention to right/left
differences on double doors. Attach hinges for swinging doors
and rollers for sliding doors.
Install door tracks and door roller hardware on the
floor as directed and then Install the doors according to the
manufacturer's Instructions. Test the action of the doors and
make adjustments so the doors roll or swing smoothly and are
aligned properly.
Tips for Maintaining a Metal Shed
Touch up scratches or any exposed metal as soon as possible to prevent rust. Clean the area With a wire brush, and then
apply a paint recommended by the shed's manufacturer.
Inspect your shed once or twice a year and tighten loose screws, bolts, and other hardware. Loose connections lead
to premature wear.
Sweep off the roof to remove wet leaves and debris, which can be hard on the finish. Also clear the roof after heavy
snowfall to reduce the risk of collapse.
Seal open seams and other potential entry pOints for water with silicone caulk. Keep the shed's doors closed and
latched to prevent damage from Wind gusts.
Anchor the Shed
Metal sheds tend to be light In weight and require secure
anchOring to the ground, generally with an anchor kit that
may be sold separately by your kit manufacturer. There are
many ways to accomplish this. The method you choose
depends mostly on the type of base you've built on, be it
concrete or wood or gravel. On concrete and wood bases,
look for corner gusset anchors that are attached directly to
the floor frame and then fastened wi th landscape screws
(wood) or masonry anchors driven Into concrete. Sheds that
have been built on a gravel or dirt base can be anchored
With auger-type anchors that are driven into the ground Just
outside the shed. you'll need to anchor the shed on at least
two sides. Once the anchors are driven, cables are strung
through the shed so they are connected to the roof beam.
The ends of the cables should exi t the shed at ground level
and then be attached to the anchors with cable clamps.
Sf!ed Projects 21 1
I How to Build a Wood Kit Shed
Prepare the base for the shed's wooden skid foundation with
a 4" layer of compacted gravel. Make sure the gravel is flat,
smooth, and perfectly level. Note: For a sloping site, a concrete
block foundation may be more appropriate (check with your
shed's manufacturer).
Prepare for the Delivery
Panelized shed ki ts are shipped on pallets. The delivery
truck may have a forklift, and the driver can take off the
load by whole pallets. Otherwise, you'll have to unload the
pieces one at a time. Make sure to have two helpers on
hand to help you unload (often drivers aren't allowed to
help due to insurance liability).
Cut three 4 x 4 (or 6 x 6) pressure-treated timbers to
match the length of the shed's floor frame. Posi tion two outer
skids so they will be flush with the outside edges of the frame,
and center one skid In between. Make sure that each skid is
perfectly level and the skids are level with one another.
Once the load is on the ground, carry the pieces to
the building site and stack them on pallets or scrap-wood
skids to keep them clean and dry. Look through the
manufacturer's instructions and arrange the stacks
according to the assembly steps.
Assemble the floor frame pieces with screws. First. Join
alternating pairs of large and small pieces to create three
full-width sections. Fasten the sections together to complete
the floor frame.
Cover the floor frame with plywood, starting with a large
sheet at the left rear corner of the frame. Fasten the plywood
with screws. Install the two outer deck boards. Layout all of
the remaining boards In between, then set even gapping for
each board. Fasten the remai ning deck boards.
Attach the floor runners to the bottom of the floor frame,
uSing exterior screws. Locate the side runners flush to the
outsides of the frame, and center the middle runner in
between. set the frame on the skids with the runners facing
down. Check the frame to make sure it is level. Secure the floor
to the skids following the manufacturer's recommendations.
Layout the shed's wall panels in their relative positions
around the floor. Make sure you have them right-slde-up: the
windows are on the top half of the walls; on the windowless
panels, the siding tells you which end is up.
Sf!ed Projects 213
Position the two rear corner walls upright onto the floor
so the wall framing is flush with the floor's edges. Fasten the
wall panels together. Raise and jOin the remaining wall panels
one at a time. DO not fasten the wall panels to the shed floor in
this step.
confirm that all wall panels are properly positioned on
the floor: The wall framing should be flush with edges of the
floor frame; the wall siding overhangs the outsides of the floor.
Fasten the wall panels by screwing through the bottom wall
plate, through the plywood flooring, and into the floor framing.
Place the door header on top of the narrow front wall panel
so it's flush with the wall framing. Fasten the header with
screws. Fasten the door Jamb to the right-side wall framing to
create a y," overhang at the end of the wall. Fasten the header
to the jamb with screws.
Install the wall's top plates starting with the rear wall.
Install the side wall plates as directed- these overhang the
front of the shed and will become part of the porch framing.
Finally, Install the front wall top plates.

Assemble the porch rail sections using the screws provided
for each piece. Attach the top plate extension to the 4 x 4
porch post, and then attach the wall tnm/support to the
extension. Fasten the corner brackets, centered on the post
and extension. Install the handrail section 4" up from the
bottom of the post.
Hang the Dutch door using two hinge pairs. Install the
hinges onto the door panels. Use three pairs of shims to
position the bottom door panel: Vi' shims at the bottom, 'fa"
shims on the left side, and ]I." shims on the right side. Fasten
the hinges to the wall trim/support Hang the top door panel in
the same fashion, using %" shims between the door panels.
Install each of the porch rail sections: Fasten through the
wall trim/support and Into the Side wall, locating the screws
where they will be least visible. Fasten down through the wall
top plate at the post and corner bracket locations to hide the
ends of the screws. Anchor the post to the decking and floor
frame with screws driven through angled pilot holes.
Join the two pieces to create the rear wall gable,
screwing through the uprights on the back Side. On the outer
side of the gable, slide in a filler shingle until it's even with
the neighbonng shingles. Fasten the fi ller with two finish nails
located above the shingle exposure line, two courses up.
Attach the top filler shingle with two (exposed) galvanized
finish nails.
Sf!ed Projects 215
Position the rear gable on top of the rear wall top plates
and center it from side to side. use a square or straightedge
to align the angled gable supports with the angled ends of the
outer plates. Fasten the gable to the plates and wall framing
with screws. Assemble and install the middle gable wall.
Arrange the roof panels on the ground according to their
installation. Flip the panels over and attach framing connectors
to the rafters at the marked locations, using screws.
With one or two helpers, set the first
roof panel at the rear of the shed, then set
the opposing roof panel In place. Align the
ridge boards of the two panels, and then
fasten them together wi th screws. Do not
fasten the panels to the walls at this stage.
Position one of the middle roof panels, aligning its outer
rafter with that of the adjacent rear roof panel. Fasten the
rafters together with screws. Install the opposing middle panel
in the same way. Set the porch roof panels into place one at a
time- these rest on a y," ledge at the front of the shed. From
inside the shed, fasten the middle and porch panels together
along their rafters.
Check the fit of all roof panels at the outside corners of
the shed. Make any necessary adjustments. Fasten the panels
to the shed with screws, starting with the porch roof Inside the
shed, fasten the panels to the gable framing, then anchor the
framing connectors to the wall plates.
Install the two roof gussets between
the middle rafters of the shed roof panels
(not the porch panels): First measure
between the side walls- this should equal
91" for this ki t (see resources). If not have
two helpers push on the walls until the
measurement matches your requirement.
Hold the gussets level, and fasten them to
the rafters Wi th screws.
Sf!ed Proj ects 217
Add filler shingles at the roof panel seams. Slide In the
bottom shingle and fasten it above the exposure line two
courses up, using two screws. Drive the screws into the rafters.
Install the remaining filler shingles the same way. Attach the
top shingle with two galvanized finish nails.
Add vertical trim boards to cover the wall seams and shed
corners. The rear corners get a filler tllm piece, followed by
a Wide tllm board on top. Add horizontal trim boards at the
front wall and along the top of the door. Fasten all tllm with
finish nails.
Cover the underside of the rafter tails (except on the
porch) with soffit panels, fastening to the rafters wi th fi nish
nails. Cover the floor framing with skirting boards, starting at
the porch sides. Hold the skirting flush with the decking boards
on the porch and with the si ding on the walls, and fasten it
with screws.
At the rear of the shed, fit the two fascia boards over the
ends of the roof battens so they meet at the roof peak. Fasten
the fascia with screws. Install the side fascia pieces over the
rafter tails with finish nails. The rear fascia overlaps the ends of
the side fascia. Cover the fascia Joints and the horizontal trim
jOint at the front wall with decorative plates.
Place the two roof ridge caps along the roof peak,
overlapping the caps' roofing felt In the center. Fasten the caps
with screws. Install the decorative gusset gable underneath the
porch roof panels using mounting clips. Finish the gable ends
with two fascia pieces installed with screws.
complete the porch assembly by fastening each front
handrail section to a deck post, using screws. Fasten the
handrail to the corner porch post. The handrail should start
4" above the bottoms of the posts, as with the Side handrail
sections. Anchor each deck post to the decking and floor frame
with screws (see Drilling Counterbored Pilot Holes, this page).
Drilling Counterbored Pilot Holes
use a combination piloting!
counterbore bit to pre-drill holes
for installing posts. Angle the
pilot holes at about 60', and
drive the screws Into the framing
below whenever possible.
The counterbore created by
the piloting bit helps hide the
screw head.
Sf!ed Projects 219
I Shed with Firewood Bin
ilh over 37 square feet of secure storage space
and an open-air log bin that holds over a half
cord of firewood, thi s shed is an especi ally handy
outbuilding for bac kyards, cabin lots, and vacmion
properties alike. Its economi cal design makes it casy to
fit anywhere and also simple and inexpensive to build.
The shed's footprint measures 6 X 10ft. At the
rear side, the roof stands at j ust over 7 ft " so the shed
fil S nicel y against a standard privacy fence. I n front ,
the top of the shed ri ses to nearl y 9 ft . above grade,
leaving room for two full -height doors and ample
headroom inside the storage area. This low- profil e
shape wit h no loss of usa bl e space is made poss ible
by the cl assic shed-style roof. Shed roofs are not only
cheaper to build than gabl es and other roof styles,
they' re al so much easier to frame and shingle (and less
likely to leak) because there's only one roof pl ane and
no peak to deal with.
Another di stinctive feature of thi s shed is its
timber-frame floor. Instead of using a 2x fl oor frame
set atop timber skids, thi s floor has 4 x 4 timber
joists integrated wi th the skid foundati on. Whil e a
standard shed floor req uires a step up of almost 12",
thi s integrated design creaLes a step of onl y An
incline of tamped gravel or a short ra mp is all you need
for rolling equipment right into the shed.
.. shingles
::: 15# Roofing fell
VI" Roof sheeling
2 x 6 Rolters 16" O.L
::::;;t:.A;"t------------VI" Plywood shealhing
2 x 4 lookoul roffers
2 . 2 x 6 Header
ti-tHI--+ I+4!-+----Door iamb & header
+----- Dauble 2 x 4 (orner
froming for lag sloroge
2 x 4 (orner
Provide I" shim
under woll
Cutting List
Description Quantity/ Size Material Description Quantity/ Size Material
Foundation/ Floor (omer trim at log bin 2 @ 10', 2@B' I x 6 cedar
Drainage moleriol I cu. yd. Compaclible grovel Drip edge, door slops 9@B' I x 2 cedar
Skids 2@10' 4 x 4 pressUie-lreoted
& bollom Irim
landscape limbers Roofing
Floor jOisls 3@ 12' 4 x 4 pressure-treated Shealhing 3 sheels@4xB' 111- exterior-grade plywood
landscape limbers (& door header spacer) roof shealhing
Bin jOisls & floor S@ 12' 2 x 4 pressure'lreoled I S# bUilding paper I roll
Corner brockels 20 @ 3W x 3W Galvanized melol Shingles 1 square Asphalt shingles- 2S0#
(orner bl(]cke t per sq. min.
Shealhing 2 sheels@4xB' l/4 " tongue-&-groove Doors
exl.grode plywood
Doors 2@%x% xl / Exterior wood doors
Wall Framing
Fasteners & Hardware
Bollom ploles
2@10',3@B' 2 x 4 pressure-treated
16d galvanized 10 Ibs.
Top ploles 2@12',4@IO' 2 x 4 common noils
Sluds 42@B' 2 x 4 16d (ommon nails Bibs.
Door header 2@B' 2 x 6 I Od cammon nails I lb.
Bin header I @12' 2 x 6 Bd galvanized 2 Ibs.
Roof Framing
common noils
Rafters 9@B' 2 x 6
Bd box nails 2 Ibs.
Exterior Finishes
Bd galvanized siding nails Sibs.
Siding 2 sheels@4x9' 'fa" Texlure 111
Bd galvanized casing 2 Ibs.
7 sheels@4xB' plywood siding
nails (Irim)
Zfloshing 20 lineor ft . Melol Zfloshing
]1/4" galvanized 2 Ibs.
Bin shealhing (oplionol) 3 sheels@4xB' '(," exl.grode plywood
rooling noils
Door hinges with screws 6@3W' Galvanized melol hinges
Fascia 2@12',2@IO' I x B cedar
Corner trim 3@ 1O',3@B' I x 4 cedar
Door handle w/lock
Soffil 'Ir " exl.grode plywood
Door head boll
I sheel @ 4 x B'
Door fool bolt
Soffil venls (oplionol) 6@ 12" Metol louvered vents
(onstruction adhesive
Door jambs & trim 6@B' I x 4 cedar
Door & panel molding B@B' 2 x 2 cedar
S/!ed Projects 221
Self-seal shii n
15# BUi lding paper
1ft" Roof sheathing
2 x 6 Rafters, 16" 0.(,
1 x 2 Roof edge trim
2 2 x 4 Top plole
1 x 8 Fascia
*" b:l. plywd
w/louver yenls
Ifi" n11 Siding
2 x 4 Wall studs --------=j---lI-
2 x 4 Bollom plole
Treated 4 x 4 skid
3%" MIL (orner b"d"t/II"
4" Gravel bose
Nol ch lor (om
lop plale
ma n wall
10'- 0"
I' I v.-
I ,
Ib--<--"" III
2- 2x 4Tap plote
2- 2x 6Heo der

2 2x 6Heo
w/ Vt" plYWDO
layout II -II Siding
2x 4Walisi uds
yt Plywood s
@ log 510rog
2 x 4 Plale
him under wall
e only
4 x 4 Treated skid
*" Plywood f
bottom plale in (UIOUI2 x 4
doorwayafte r woll is assembled


---- V




16' 16\
5'- 2"

~ c - -
3%" MIL <Orne
@ each corner
r bro(e
2 x 4 Treated floor joists ..........
2 x 4 Treated flooring
~ . Plywood 110 or layoul
4 x 4 Treated skid -
No plywd. 1100 r in this area -
I iii I"
I 1:"-
I II I I ~
' 2' -6"
/' /
Apply lI" plyw
lop of 4 x 4 in thiS area
d. shim 10
10' -OYo"
1\ \.0"
16\ 1/ 1/ 16" 16"
OC \
~ I
\ 0" 1' / 2\ 2'i
--.J L
IL -.J L
all Plywood shim under wall
@ log storage only
Si!cd Projects 223
2x 6Rafte 16"0( rs, ..
2x 4SIUds


161ft" 16" 16" 16Y,"
O.t 0.(.
S' .S" J}3Y,
x 4 Lookout rafter
- ,

2 x 6 Raft ers, 16" 0.(.

I' /


16" \ 16"

0(, \
I t
x 4lookolll ralter
"'7 2- 2x 6Heoder
x 4 Haunch
2 x 4 Fromin 9 below
*" Plywood floor
= =
(ommon wall
rTlrT II
d. shim
Apply y, plyw
under stud wall 01 log storage orea
Si!cd Projects 225
1 x 2 Edge lrim
1 x 8 Fascia
1 x 4 (orner boards
2 x 2 Molding
1 x 4 Trim
I x 2 Edge trim
1 x 8 Fosdo
1 x 4 (orner boards
""''' ..
I x SFoscio


1 x 4 (orner boards
1 x 2 Edge trim
1 x 8 Fascia
Siding on back wall only
1 x 4 (orner boa rds
2 x 4 Siud
2x 4
Bollam plate
2 - 2 x 6
2x 4
2 x 6 Roher templale
(ullor lop plate

2 x 4 Ii. plol.
""''''1--_ 2 x 4 Top plate
-,--2 x 4 Studs
'''1--2 - 2 x 6 Header W/ Vl" plywood
II -II Siding
1 x 4 Trim
1 x 2 Door slop
Yi x Y. x m"
Flush door w/2 x 2 molding
2 x 2 Molding
1 x 2 Irim under door only
4 x 4 Floor framing
%" Plywood
if1" Pl ywood
rool sheathing
2" x 6" Rafter
1 x 2Roof
2" x 4" Tie plate
edge trim
2" x 4" Top plate
8" Ilyp.1
1 x 8 Fascia
2 x 4 Lookout rofter,
2" x4"
noiled in through bock
of 2" x 6" ralter
2 - 2" x 6"
Heoder fro me
Bull up 10
on top of
2x 4slud
2" x 4" stud
Trim or
2" x 4" siding (overing
(orner studs

2 x 6 Rafter templole
CUI for lop plate
I x 4 Irim ------------,
1 x 2 Door slop
1 x 2 Weather slop trim
@insideface of
2', 6" x 6' -8" x 1%"
Flush door w/2 x 2 molding
2x 4SIud
& cripple wall
II -II Siding
2 x 2 Molding
33%" x 3%"
Door hinges (per door)
1 x 4 Trim
Provide t
plywood shim
under wall
2 x 4 Bottom plate
I-I-II Siding
2 x 4 Studs
2 x 4 Cripple stud
2 x 4 Bonom plote
1 x 4Trim
I-I-II Shim
1 x 6 Trim
Si!ed Projects 227
I How to Build the Shed with Firewood Bin
1. Prepare the foundat ion site wi th a 4" layer of
compacted grave l. Cut t he two outer 4 x 4
t imber sk ids (120" ). Pos iti on the skids on the
gravel bed so t heir outside edges are 72" apa rt ,
making sure they are level and para ll e l vvith
one <:IIlother.
2. C ut six 4 x 4 Aoor joists (65" ) and four 2 x 4
bin joist s (26W' ). Anc hor the joists to t he skids
with metal angles fastened wit h 16d galvani zed
common nail s, as shown in the FLOOR
FRAMING (pagc 223). Toc nail thc inncr bin
joists to t he Aoor joists. All joists must be flush
with the tops of the outer ski ds.
3. Deck t he cabin area of the shed Aour fra me with
t\VO trimmed sheets of -Y.! " plywood, as shown in
the SKID FRAMING. The sheets should be Aush
wi th the oll tsides of t he skids and joists over the
e ntire shed porti on of the frame. Cover the e nds
of the skids in the bin area with 3 Y2 "-widc stri ps of
ply\vood fl oor sheathing.
4. Fra me the rear wal l as shown in the REAR
FRAM ING (page 223), using a treated bottom
plate and a single top pl ate. The studs a re 73%"
long. Install and brace the wa ll. Frame and instal l
the square portion of the ri ght side \vall as shown
in the HIG HT SIDE FHAMING (page 224).
Do not insta ll the doubl e top plate or the rake
(angled) studs at thi s t ime.
5. Construct the front wall following the FRONT
FRAMING (page 222). The two studs that will
support the bin header are 761'4" long. The jack
studs in t he door openi ng are 79 Y2 " long, a nd the
bui lt-up 2 x 6 door headcr is 65" long. Add both
top plates on the front wal l. I nstall the front wa ll ,
t hen add the double top plates on t he right side
and reur \".ra ll s, overlapping the plutes at the ri ght
reur corner.
6. Build t he common wall in place (see the
Cut t he treated bottom plate (65") and install it
Aush to thc cdgc of thc shed arca fl oor dccking.
Mitcr thc cnd of the rcar cnd stud at 14
so the
outer edge is flush wit h the rear wa ll top pl ate.
Notch the front wa ll top plates to make room for
the common wull top plate, plus I Yi 6 i! of t he rafter
depth. Cut and install the top pl ate. Cut and
install the four studs as shown.
7. Cut two 2 x 6s (72" ) for the hin header. C lip t he
top rear corne r of each board: Mark 1 down
from the top and 4%" from the end; connect the
mar ks, then cut along the line. Join the heade r
pieces with construct ion adhesive and pairs of 1 ad
common na il s driven every 121!. Install t he header
on top of the front wa ll studs and rear wa ll top
plate. Leave a I Y2
' T
space between the header a nd
the cnd of the rcar wall. Add 2 X 4 blocks betwcen
the header a nd front wa ll top plates.
8. Complete the bin Aoor foll owi ng the FLOOR
PLAN (page 225 ). Cut e ight treated 2 x 45 (65" )
und construct the three assembli es as shovm
in t he plan. Install the assembli es using 16d
ga lvanized common nai ls.
9. Install plywood siding along the front a nd
rear wall s as shown in the FRONTIHEAR
FRAMING. Trim t he s heets fo r the rea r wa ll
so t hey run from t he top of t he \va ll down to 111
below t he pl ywood fl oor sheat hing. On the front
v,lall , run full sheets sta rt ing ] 11 belm'v t he fl oor.
Add Z-fl ashing on top of t he sheets, a nd then
conti nue with strips of siding up to the top of
the walt.
10. Cut a patte rn raft e r foll owing the RAFTER
TEM PLAT E (page 227). Tes t -fit t he raft e r
and make a ny necessa ry adj ustment s. Use
t he patte rn to c ut t he eight rema ining rafters.
Inst all t he ra fte rs using 16
o n-ce nter s pac ing.
The outer ru ft e rs should be ftu sh wit h t he
side wa ll s.
] 1. Compl ete the left wa ll framing as sho",m in the
LEFT S I DE FRAM I NG: C ut the rear end of the
2 X 4 na il e r to foll ow the end raft er, and insta ll
it flu sh wi t h t he bottom edge of the bi n heade r.
Cut two 2 x 4 corner braces (24"), mitering the
e nds at 45' . Install the braces so thei r e nds are
equidi sta nt from the corne rs and their oute r
edges <:I re flush vvith the nail e r and \,\r<:l ll studs.
I nstall a 2 X 4 jac k stud to fit betwee n the
hin fl oor and the corner brace on each side of
t he openi ng.
12. Cut a nd insta ll the four ra ke studs on the
right side wa ll , as shown in the RI GHT SIDE
FRAMING. Cove r the side wall s wit h siding,
start ing with a full sheet at t he rea r of the ri ght
side wa ll. On t he left side wall , run the siding
to t he inside edges of the bin opening. If desired,
cover t he interi or \va ll s of the bin wit h Y2
exte rior pl ywood.
13. Add Rve 2 X 4 lookouts (7%") to eac h e nd
rafte r as shown in the LEFT and RI GHT SIDE
FRAMING. Install I x 8 fa sc ia boa rds alo ng
all four sides of t he roof, fl us h wit h the tops
of t he ra fte rs. C ut strips of %11 soffit mat e rial
to enc lose the rafte r bays , beveling t he in side
edges at 14' . Insta ll the soffit s so they are flu sh
wi th the outsides of the e nd raft e rs. Add soffit
ve nti ng, if desired.
14. Dec k t he roof with sheat hi ng, starti ng at one
of t he lower corners . T he s heathing s hou ld
cover the to ps of the fascia boards. Install
I X 2 dri p edge along all sides of the roof, flush
with the t op of the s heathing. Add building
pa pe r and shingles, fo ll owing the ste ps on
page 56.
15. Trim t he sides and top of the bi n opening wi th
I X 4 a nd I X 6, as s hown in the CORNER
DETAIL (page 227); use I X 6 along the top of
t he opening. Cover the shed corne rs wit h 1 x 4
trim. If desi red, create decor<:lti ve 2 x 2 frames
a nd a ppl y them to the siding a nd doors (see t he
] 6. Prepare t he door opening with 1 x 4 t rim as
shown in the DOO R DETAILS (page 227).
Install the doors using th ree hinges for e<:lc h.
Add] x 2 stops a roun d the opening, plus a t rim
pi ece unde rneath t he door. Add a I x 2 wea ther
stop t o the back side of one door. Ins tall door
la tch hardv,la re, as des ired. Paint or a ppl y clear
wood protectant:.
Sf! ed Projects 229
I Additional Shed Plans
I Salt Box Storage Sheds
Three popular sizes:
8' x 8'
12' x 8'
16' x 8'
Wood floor on gravel base or concrete lIoor
Height, floor to peok: 8'2"
Front woll height: 7'
6'0" x 6'5" double door for eosy oecess
Complete list of moteriols
Step-by-step instructions
.. 12'- 0" :>
0[: : ::
~ I I I I
Q) I I I I
l. L . __ L.J
Design #002D-4500
I Barn Storage Sheds with Loft
Three popular sizes:
12' x 12'
12' x 16'
12' x 20'
Wood floor on concrete pier founda tion
or concrete floor
Height, floor to peok: 12' 10"
Ceiling height: 7'-4"
4'0" x 6' 8" double door for eosy oecess
Complete list of moteriols
Step-by-step instructions
.-----,--------- -,
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I.' .I
12'- 0"
De sign #002D4501
Visit to order and view additional proj ects.
I Gable Storage Sheds

Four populor sizes:
8' x 8'
8' x 10'
8' x 12'
8' x 16'

Wood floor on 4 x 4 runners

Height, floor to peak: 8'-4v,"

Ceiling height: 7'

4'-0" x 6' -5" double door lor easy access

Economicol and easy-to-build shed
Complete list of materials
Step-by-step instructions
~ \> b ~ D - - - - - - i
N.' 0
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Design #002D-4503
I Large Gable Storage Sheds
Three popular sizes:
10' x 12'
10' x 16'
10' x 20'
Wood floor on 4 x 4 runners
Height floor to peak: 8'-8 Y,"
Ceiling height: 7'
4'-0" x 6'-4" double door lor easy access
Complete list of moterials
Step-by-step instructions
.... ---------
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I( I; 0-,I
Design #002D-4504
Visit wvvw. projec to order and view additional projects.
Additiollni Shed Plans 231
I Children's Playhouse

, t
Size: 8' x 8'
Wood floor on 4 x 4 runners
Height, floor to peol : 9'-2"
Ceiling height: 6'-i"
2' p porch
Attroctive window boxes
Includes operoble windowl
Complete lilt of moteriol,
Step-by-step inshuctions
Design #002D-4505
I Barn Storage Sheds
Three popular sizes:
i2' x 8'
12' x i2'
i2' x i6'
Wood floor on concrete pier foundation
or concrete floor
Height, floor to peol : 9' -iO"
Ceiling height: 7'-i 0"
5'-6" x 6' -8" double door for eolY O([ess
Gambrel roof design
Complete lilt of moteriol,
Step-by-step instructions
-' .
5e .
1< i 2'- 0" 'I
: '
: '
Design #002D-4508
Visit to order and view additional projects.
I Mini-Barn Storage Sheds
Four populor sizes:
7'3" x 6'
7'3" x B'
7'3" x 10'
7'3" x 12'
Wood floor on 4 x 6 runners or concrete floor
Height, floor to peol : 9'
Ceiling height: 7'4"
3'0" x 6' B" door
Am"tive styling with gombrel roof
Complete list of moteriols
Step-by-step instructions
;r-----+, - - - - - ~
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De sign #002D-4510
I Gable Storage Shed with Cupola

, I
Size: 12' x 10'
Wood floor on concrete piers or concrete floor
Height, floor to peol: 9'B"
Ceiling height: 7'4"
3'0" x 6'8" door
Mode of cedor plywood wi th bottens
Complete list of moteriols
Stepbystep instructions
12' -0
1< :> I
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De sign #002D-4511
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Addi tiollni Shed Plans 233
I Deluxe Cabana

Size: II'O"x 13'6"

Conc"te floor

Height, floor to pook: II '-7"

Ceiling height: 8'

Unique roof design with skylight

Convenient dressing room and servicing oreo

Perfect storege for poolside furniture
and equipment

Complete list of moteriols

Step-by-step inst/octions
11'- 0'
, I
Design #002D-4518
I Yard Barn with Loft Storage

Size: 10' x 12'
Wood floor on 4 x 4 runners
Height, floor to pook: 10'-/"
Ceiling height: 6'-11"
6'-0" x 6'-2" double door for oosy oecess
Loft provides additional storage oreo
Amoetive styling is sui toble for ony yOid
Complete list of moteriols
Step-by-step inst/uctions

, I
Design #002D-4520
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I Garden Shed

Size: 10' x 10'

Wood floor on 4 x 4 runners

Height, floor to pook: 11 '-3 '1, "

left woll height: 8'

Wonderful complement to ony bockyord

Perfect spoce for lown equipment or plonts
ond flowers

Plenty of windows for gordening yeor-round

Complete list of moteriols

Step-by-step instluctions

t I I II I
Design #002D-4523
I Workroom with Covered Porch

Size: 24' x 20'

Building height: 13'-6"

Roof pitch: '/11

Ceiling height: B'

Slob foundotion

Eosy occess through double-door en tlY

Interior enhanced by lorge windows

Lorge enough for storoge

Complete list of moteliols

Step-by-step instructions
{ Walk l oom
1 r y l
t -. 24' - Q"
Design #002D-7520
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Additiollni Shed Plans 235
I Resources
Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association
The Betty Mills Company
2121 S. EI Camino Real , Suite D-100
San Mateo, CA 94403
The Big eZee
Metal Kit Sheds
101 N. Fourth St
Breese, IL 62230
Cedar Shake & shingle Bureau
Certified Wood Products Council
HDA, Inc.
Designs: Clerestory Studio (p. 86 to 99), sunlight Garden
Shed (p. 100 to 113), Convenience Shed (p. 124 to 137),
Service Shed (p. 192 to 201), Shed with Firewood Bin
(p. 220 to 229)
St Louis, MO
800-373-2646/ plan sales
314-770-2228/ technical assistance
Photo Credits
Photo courtesy of The Betty Mills Company
p. 204 (top)
Photo courtesy of Finley Products Inc.
p. 205
Dennis Henderson
p. 16, 17 (top & lower)
Douglas Keister
p. 14 (lower)
Photo courtesy of DuraMAX
p. 11 (lower left)
Clive Nichols
p. 11 (lower right), 15, 18 (lower), 19
Paint Quality institute
Simpson Strong-Tie Co.
Southern Pine Council
Designs by Bruce Pierce: Simple Storage Shed (p. 154 to
165), Gothic Playhouse (p. 166 to 179)
Kemer, LA
Available at the Betty Mills Company
Finley products, Inc.
1018 New Holland Ave.
Lancaster, PA 17601
Summerwood Products
735 Progress Avenue
Toronto, Ontario M1 H 2W7
Dency Kane
p. 8 (lower right), 9 (top)
Eric Roth
p. 6, 13 (lower), 14 (top)
Jerry pavia
p. 9 (lower), 12 (top & lower), 13 (top)
Photos courtesy of Summerwood Outdoors, Inc.
p. 8 (top & lower left), 10 (top & lower), 11 (top), 18 (top),
62 (left & right), 204 (lower)
Photo courtesy of Spirit Elements
p. 203
Metric Conversion Charts
Converting Measurements
To Convert: To: Multiply by: To Convert: To: Multiply by:
Inches Millimeters 2\.4 Mi llimeters Inches 0.039
Inches Centime ters 2.\4 Centimeters Inches 0.394
Feet Meters 0.30\ Meters Feet 3.28
Yords Meters 0.914 Meters Yords 1.09
Square inches Squore centimeters 6.4\ Square centimeters Square inches 0.1\5
Squore fee t Square meters 0.093 Square meters Squore feet 10.8
Squore yords Square meters 0.836 Square meters Squore yords 1.2
Cubic inches Cubic centimeters 16.4 Cubic centimeters Cubic in ches 0.061
Cubic feet Cubic meters 0.0283 Cubic meters Cubic feet 3\ .3
Cubic yords Cubic meters OJ 6\ Cubic meters Cubic ords 1.31
Pounds Kilograms 0.4\ 4 Kilograms Pounds 2.2
Lumber Dimensions
Nominal - U.S. Actual - U.S. (in inches) Metric Nominal - U.S. Actual - U.S. (in inches) Metric
I x 2 3f4 x 1111 19x38mm 2 x 3 11/1 X 2111 38x64mm
I x 3 % X 21/1 19x64mm 2 x 4 11/1 X 31J2 38 x 89 mm
I x 4 % x 3
11 19 x 89 mm 2 x 6 11/1 X 5111 38 x 140 mm
I x \ % X 41/1 19x114mm 2 x 8 11/2 X 7if. 38 x 184 mm
Ix6 % x 51/1 19x140mm 2 x 10 11/1 X 9V. 38 x 235mm
I x 7 3f4 X 6
/4 19x1S9mm 2 x 12 1V1 x 11 V. 38 x 286 mm
Ix8 3f4 x 7if. 19x184mm 4 x 4 3
/1 X 3V1 89x89mm
I x 10 31. X 91/. 19 x 23S mm 4 x 6 3
/1 X 5
/7 89 x 140 mm
I x 12 0/. x 1 P/4 19 x 286 mm 6 x 6 5
/1 X 51/] 140 x 140 mm
2 x 2 l V1 xPh 38x38mm 8 x 8 X 7''1. 184 x 184 mm
Metric Plywood Counterbore, Shank & Pilot Hole Diameters
Standard Sheathing Grade Sanded Grade Counterbore Clearance
Pilot Hole Diameter
7.S mm 6 mm ('M)
Diameter for Hole for
Screw Shank Hard Wood
Soft Wood
9.\ mm (3;a") 8 mm
Screw Head
#1 .146 (%,) '/64 %4
12.\ mm (1;/') II mm
%1 %4 Vn
1\.\ mm (1/8") 14mm #3
7/.4 1/16 %.
18.5 mm ('14") 17 mm (2/3")
'/, YH %.
20.\ mm (
1i6") 19 mm ('14")
'/, %4
#6 VI. %. %2 Y
22.5 mm (7;,") 21 mm
#7 VI6 '/31 %2 '/.4
2\ .5 mm (I") 24 mm (111i6")
#8 %
#9 % 11/64
#10 % VI.
Vi. Vl1 %4
#12 '/' %2 %.
I\"elric Cml1'erSiOIl Charts 237
I Index
ideas for, 12
kits and, 10
Al umi num hardware, 27
Anatomy of sheds, 26
Angles, marking, 47
Approvals needed, 21
Asian style, 15
Asphalt shingles, 52, 56-57
Attached sheds, 11
Barn storage shed plans, 230, 232-233, 234
Barn storage sheds with loft, 230
Basic storage shed
building, 162-165
considerations, 154-155
cutti ng list, 156
drawings, 157-161
Bird's mouth cuts, 48
Board lumber, 27
Buildi ng codes
building department approval, 21
foundations and, 28
siting and, 22
Building paper, installing on roofing, 55
Buildi ng section drawings, 24
Cabana plan, 234
advantages, 27
roof shingles, 52, 58-59
shingle ideas, 14, 18
Children's playhouses. See Playhouses
Clerestory studio
building, 95- 99
cutti ng list, 88
drawings, 89-94
overview of, 86-87
Closet sheds. See Lean-to tool bin
Collar ties, 47
components of sheds, 26
building block foundations, 30-31
building pier foundations, 32- 35
building slabs foundations, 36-39
estimating amount needed, 39
foundations and permanent structure
classification, 22
lumber for slab foundations, 42
pouring tips, 39
construction (CON5n Grade No.2
lumber, 27
Construction drawi ngs, worki ng with,
24- 25
construction stages, 26
convenience shed
building, 133-137
cutti ng list, 126
drawings, 127-132
overview of, 124-125
Costs and size, 18
counterbored pilot holes, drilli ng, 219
Country style
exteriors, 9, 180
interiors, 13, 181
Cupola, plan for gable storage shed
Deluxe cabana plan, 234
Dimensions of lumber, 27
buildi ng platforms to, 82-83
buildi ng ramps to, 74-77
buildi ng stairs to, 79-81
Gothic, 166, 167
homemade, 73
installing flashing above, 73
installing prehung, 72
installing trim, 68
placement of, 8
Dormers, 8
Drainage and siti ng, 22
Drawi ngs, working with construction,
Drilling counterbored pilot holes, 219
Elevations (drawi ngs), 25
Fasteners, 27
Fi nishes, 27
Fi nish lumber, 27
Fi rewood bin shed
buildi ng, 228-229
cutti ng list. 221
drawings, 220, 222- 227
overview of, 220
Fi rewood seasoning shed
buildi ng, 198-200
considerations, 192-193
cutti ng list, 194
drawings, 195-197
Flashing above doors & windows,
installing, 73
framing, 40-41
installing plywood, 41
buildi ng codes and, 28
buildi ng concrete block, 30-31
buildi ng concrete pier, 32-35
buildi ng concrete slab, 36-39
buildi ng wooden skid, 28-29
taxes and, 22
connectors used, 27
fl oors, 40-41
lumber for, 27
roofs, 46- 51
walls, 42-45
Frost lines, 28
Gable roofs
described, 47
fascia on, 52
framing, 51
Gable storage shed plans, 231, 233
Galvanized steel hardware, hot-dipped, 27
Gambrel garage shed
buildi ng, 148-153
cutting list, 140
drawings, 141- 147
overview of, 138-139
Gambrel roofs
described, 47, 139
fascia on, 52
framing, 51
Garden shed plan, 235
Gothic playhouse
buildi ng, 175-179
considerations, 166-167
cutting list, 168
drawings, 169-174
Gothic style architecture, 166
buildi ng, 109-113
cutting list, 102
drawings, 103-108
ideas for, 19
overview of, 100-101
Guest houses, 16-17
described, 27
for metal roofing, 60
used on siding, 62
Hip roofs, described, 47
Holes, pre-drilling, 219
Homemade doors & windows, 73
Horizontal siding
installing, 63-64
trim and, 68
Hot-dipped galvanized steel hardware, 27
Kit sheds
considerations, 202-203, 205
custom details with, 8, 10
See a/so Metal kit sheds; Wood kit sheds
Knotty pi ne paneling ideas, 13, 180
Large gable storage shed plan, 231
Lean-to tool bin
buildi ng, 121-123
cutting list, 116
drawings, 117-120
overview of, 114-115
Lumber, 27
Metal anchors, 27
Metal kit sheds
anchoring, 211
assembling, 206-211
considerations, 202, 204-205
maintaining, 211
Metal roofing, 52, 60-61
Mini-barn storage shed plan, 233
Nailing techniques, 40
Nail types, 40
Neighbors and shed siting, 22
New England style, 16-17
Notched-stringer stairs, building, 80-81
Overhead plan views, 25
Patios, integrating sheds with, 11, 18
pier foundations
advantages, 32
building concrete, 32-35
permanent structure classification
barn storage sheds, 230,
deluxe cabana, 234
gable storage shed, 231
gable storage shed with cupola, 233
garden shed, 235
large gable storage shed, 231
mini-barn storage shed, 233
playhouse, 232
working with, 24-25
workroom with covered porch, 235
yard barn with loft storage, 234
Plan views (drawings), 25
Platforms, building, 82-83
building, 175- 179
considerations, 166- 167
cutting list, 168
drawings, 169-174
plan, 232
exterior grade, 27
installing floors, 41
install ing siding, 65
Prehung doors & wi ndows, installing,
Pressure-treated lumber, 27, 42
Primers, 27
Privacy, 7
Rafters, 47
Rafter ties, 47
building, 75-77
considerations, 74
finishing overhangs, 69
framing, 46-51
install ing fascia, 53-54
install ing sheathing & building paper, 55
install ing vents, 58
knotty pine sheathing, 13
materials for, 52
overhangs, 11
styles, 47
Rubber washered nails & screws, 60
Saltbox storage shed
ideas for, 12
plan, 230
"seaside" sheds, 14
Seasonal changes and siting, 23
Select Structural (SEL STR) lumber, 27
Service shed
building, 198-201
considerations, 192
cutting list. 194
drawings, 195- 197
Setback requirements and siting, 22
greenhouses and, 101
overhangs for, 11
install ing on roofing, 55
knotty pine, 13
for roof decks, 180
Shed anatomy, 26
Shed roofs, described, 47
considerations, 62
install ing horizontal, 63-64
install ing plywood, 65
install ing tongue & groove, 66-67
trim and, 68
Sites, choosing, 22-23, 101
Skid foundations
building, 28-29
permanent structure classification
Slopes of roofs, 47
Soil and Siting, 22
Speed squares, 47
Stages of construction, 26
Stainless steel hardware, 27
building, 79-81
calculating size of step, 79
considerations, 78
stepped platforms as, 83
Standard (STAND) lumber, 27
Stick framing
described, 40
tongue & groove siding and, 66-67
Storage shed, basic
building, 162-165
considerations, 154-155
cutting list, 156
drawings, 157- 161
STUD lumber, 27
Sunlight and siting, 23
Sunrooms, 18
Taxes, 22
Timber-frame shed
building, 187-191
considerations, 180-181
cutting list, 182
drawings, 183- 186
considerations, 62
installing, 68
Trusses, custom, 47
Utility lines and siting, 22
Utility (UTIL) grade lumber, 27
vents, installing roof. 58
Walls, framing, 42-45
box bay, 124
clerestory, 86-87
Gothic, 166
homemade, 73
installing flashing above, 73
installing prehung, 70-71
install ing trim, 68
sheltering with overhangs, 11
Wooden skid foundations
building, 28-29
permanent structure classification
Wood kit sheds
building, 212-219
considerations, 202-205
ideas for, 8, 10
workroom with covered porch plan, 235
Yard barn with loft storage plan, 234
zoning laws and Siting, 22
Illdex 239
CNiIIIw P\jJIlshlng
Complete Guide to Attics & Basements
Complete Guide to Basic \Voodworj,;jng
Complete Guide to Bathrooms
Complete Guide Buil d Your Kids a TreehoLlse
Complete Guide to Carpentry for Homeowners
Complete Guide to Ceramic & Stone Ti le
Complete Guide to Contemporary Sheds
Complete Guide to Creative Landscapes
Complete Guide to Custom Shelves & Built- Ins
Complete Guide to Decks
Complete Guide to Decorating v,"ith Ceramic Til e
Complete Guide to DIY Projects for Luxurious Living
Complete Guide to Dream Kitchens
Complete Guide to Finishing Wa ll s & Ceil ings
Complete Guide to Floor Decor
Complete Guide to Gazebos & Arbors
Complete Guide to Horne Plumbing
Complete Guide to Home Wiring
Complete Guide to Landscape Construction
Complete Guide Maintain Your Pool & Spa
Complete Guide to .Masonry & Stone\,vork
Complete Guide to Outdoor \lVooe! Projects
Complete Guide to Painting & Decorat ing
Complete Guide to Patios
Complete Guide to Roofing & Siding
Complete Guide to Trim & Fini sh Carpently
Complete Guide to \ ,Vindows & Doors
Complete Guide to \"food Storage Projects
Complete Outdoor Buil der
Complete Photo Guide to Home Repair
Complete Photo Guide to Home Improvement
ISBN 1-58923-305-0
ISBN 1-58923-245-3
ISBN 1-58923-287-9
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