Building a Modern Tiny House in Connecticut

Insulation Under Tiny House Subfloor Begins

On Monday 6/6/16 Mikey decided to take the day off from work because the weather was great and he wanted to work on Tiny House. 

We started on cutting 2” rigid foam insulation pieces to fit into joist cavity spaces. We worked on saw horses set up out by the willow tree (to keep toxic dust away from places where Holly, our Sheltie, hangs out).  He tried using the new Ryobi cordless jig saw; it worked great but the blade was not quite long enough to cut completely through 2” foam.  The cut pieces were left hanging by the foil backing, so he cut through that with a small utility knife from underneath, like using a letter opener, and it made a clean cut.  

Each piece is separated from surrounding wood framing by 1/4” on all sides which he fills with Great Stuff Pro foam, squirted into the crack with a special nozzle from a tall, 20-oz, aerosol can. Each space is 3.5” deep, and the plan is to fill the depth of each with 3 rectangles of rigid foam, one above the other: a 2” layer on the bottom, then a 1” layer, and on the top, a 1/2” piece.  Not much room for error - the bottom piece needs to be perfectly flat against the sheet metal under it so that when the next two pieces above are added, the plywood flooring will not have to compress the (incompressible) rigid foam under it.

The first couple of 2” pieces were bowed slightly downward in the center, and once the surrounding foam was in place and solidified, it was hard to force the 2” piece to lie completely flat.  Solution: when first placing the rigid foam block in the space, hold the ends downward against the sheet metal with a small wood scrap held by a clamp to the adjacent framing wood, and leave the clamped scraps in place until Great Stuff foam has solidified (perhaps 20 minutes). 

About 10:15, Mikey had to leave for a doctor appointment.  When he returned, we had to pump water off the trailer tarp before we could start putting cut foam rectangles in place - lots of water from 2” rain Sunday.  At 1:40, with 3 pieces in place, I had to leave for a dental appointment, after which I went to England Hardware for some items and looked for more Great Stuff Pro, which they didn’t have.  When I got back from England’s, Mikey had completed 1/6 of the whole trailer with 2” rigid foam - a total of 5 cavities, but he was running out of Great Stuff Pro.  So then he took off for Home Depot to get more; after returning he completed 5 more spaces with rigid foam for a day’s total of 10.   

We didn’t get as far as we had hoped - a long way to go with insulation before we can start the plywood subfloor.

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