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In fact, outhouses are generally relegated out of sight and thought to be solely utilitarian. Below, we show you how to build one that you’ll be proud of—and will even want your guests to experience. To illustrate the process, we''s Santa Cruz Mountains. This project is perfect for anyone who has a large piece of land that''s defined lines stand in stark contrast against the raw landscape of tangled vines and rolling hills. It sits five miles from the coast on 10 acres in the Santa Cruz Mountains and is surrounded by towering redwoods and twisted oak trees.
A pit latrine is a cheap and ecologically friendly solution. It’s considered to be non-permanent infrastructure, and contrary to what you might see in the high-traffic restrooms of your local park, they aren’t all offensive. A septic system is costly and installing a vault toilet adds a level of complication, cost, and commitment. With a traditional pit toilet, you cover the hole and move to a new location. It’s simple and effective. A hole that’s the 1 last update 2020/07/07 three feet wide and five feet deep will last five years for a family of six. If that sounds right for your needs, then read on.A pit latrine is a cheap and ecologically friendly solution. It’s considered to be non-permanent infrastructure, and contrary to what you might see in the high-traffic restrooms of your local park, they aren’t all offensive. A septic system is costly and installing a vault toilet adds a level of complication, cost, and commitment. With a traditional pit toilet, you cover the hole and move to a new location. It’s simple and effective. A hole that’s three feet wide and five feet deep will last five years for a family of six. If that sounds right for your needs, then read on.
Avoid low-lying depressions where your the 1 last update 2020/07/07 pit might fill with groundwater. Avoid low-lying depressions where your pit might fill with groundwater.
You can do this by hand, but if you can rent a backhoe, it would be a lot quicker. You’ll need to shore up the hole with wood or other materials and cap the top of it in a way that connects it perfectly to the outhouse. You can pour a traditional concrete pad, for which there are a lot of resources online. But in this case, an old piece of galvanized culvert was extended from the hole into the foundation of the outhouse.
This particular outhouse was designed with SketchUp, a free software used by builders around the world. But a simple outhouse can be designed on paper with some basic knowledge of building construction. The Visual Handbook of Building and Remodeling can also help you figure out how to properly build everything.
Ensure that there’s enough room in your layout for the toilet, a ventilation tube, some storage for toiletries, and maybe a coat hook. You’ll also need a door. Make sure you pick one out ahead of time, since it will tell you the rough dimensions you’ll need to frame it.
Make sure your design allows for the door to open without it getting in the way. You can include a window or two, but you should know that some of the best outhouses don’t use them. A limited amount of diffused light is okay, but the theory of pit latrine design is that flies and other insects that find their way into the pit will try and leave via the ventilation tube, if that’s the only natural light source. If you opt for no windows, there are dozens of stand-alone solar light kits available for less than $50, where no electrical know-how is required.
Woodworking Planshow to Woodworking Plans for You probably want a sink. However, you might find the fresh air and natural light more enjoyable. We opted to install a sink under the protection of the roof, but just outside the toilet. It gets its water from a garden hose hookup and drains the small amount of gray water we produce into the trees on the hillside.
The design palette of your outhouse can go in a variety of directions. The fortunate thing about building on such a small scale is the low cost of materials. While the difference in price between a cheap siding and an expensive one would be extraordinary on a home, on a building that’s less than 100 square feet, it’s a minor difference. This affords even the most modest builder a chance to spread their design wings and experiment without breaking the bank. If there’s a home design you’ve always enjoyed, this is your chance to replicate some of its look on a budget.
The goal with this outhouse was to build a structure that would stand in stark contrast to the landscape when you''s thinking that he may be able to get away with just staples in the future.
There’s a lot of good wood options. Metal siding is cheap and easy. There are also some plastic panels that can work well. Trim will go over the gaps where the doors and windows meet the siding.
When it comes to decor, remember that this is a small area, so keep it simple. Add a few touches that make it special, but don’t clutter the space. In this particular example, there’s a simple storage cabinet. The toilet paper roll is a wall-mounted piece of madrone wood from a tree that fell last winter. One accent wall is finished with wallpaper by Andrea Lauren on Etsy. The sink area includes soap by Juniper Ridge and a Turkish towel from Longest Thread on Etsy. The mirror is a stainless, commercial model that was cheap and should last in the outdoor elements. Just think about the essentials, including small unique touches and simple necessities that won’t clutter or overwhelm the space.
If you’ve never built anything like this before, an outhouse is a practical solution to a need for a bathroom, but also a wonderful chance to dabble in design and construction. Keep it interesting, keep it light, and don’t get caught up in the minutiae. This is a low-impact project and a chance to have some fun. No one expects an outhouse to surprise and delight, and the expectation for one is a low—and often grotesque—standard. Any smartly designed and reasonably well-built structure will be well-received and is the perfect platform to dip your toe into structure design.
It’s also an opportunity to experiment with materials and methods on a small scale before one day doing a larger project, like a house or cabin. The footprint is small, the impact is minimal, and by design, it’s temporary. In a few years, if you don’t choose to simply relocate the old structure, you have the opportunity to break out the sketchpad and start anew.
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