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All pages to do with Sheds
All pages to do with Sheds
How to Build a Shed eBook - FAQ
Can I share the eBook and plans with my friends & family or put them on the internet?
Unfortunately no, you are not allowed to share your copy of the eBook and plans with friends, family or to put it on the internet in any way or form.
The eBook is kept at a low price so that everyone can afford it. If you tell someone about the product who is building a shed, please send them to Zacsgarden.com where they will find the link to purchase for themselves.
What format is the eBook and plans?
The eBook and shed plans come in .PDF format which can be read by internet browsers such as Chrome or Firefox and specialist readers such as Adobe Acrobat.
Is there a guarantee?
If you don't think that the eBook and shed plans are worth the price then I am happy to give you a full refund within 60 days of your purchase.
Is the eBook advice applicable to where I live?
The building of a shed is universal. However the references to permit offices are general in nature, and applicable in most locations.
How and when will I receive my ebook?
When you purchase, after the billing page you will be taken straight to a members page which contains the links to the ebook, and shed plan files. From there you can download them, which should only take 1-2 minutes depending on your internet speed.
Who is ClickBank?
ClickBank is a the company that I have chosen to handle payments for this eBook. When you purchase, you will see ClickBank on your bank statement.
ClickBank is the retailer of products on this site. CLICKBANK® is a registered trademark of Click Sales, Inc., a Delaware corporation located at 1444 S. Entertainment Ave., Suite 410 Boise, ID 83709, USA and used by permission. ClickBank's role as retailer does not constitute an endorsement, approval or review of these products or any claim, statement or opinion used in promotion of these products.
Does this eBook come with a disclaimer?
The disclaimer can be found on the legal page inside the eBook and the plans. As a general note:
Any information and advice given in this Do-It-Yourself eBook and plans is general in nature. I am not a lawyer, builder, permit officer or anything similar. By reading this Do-It-Yourself guide you take responsibility of your own work/situation.
It is recommended that before you start work that you check with your local authorities and the relevant professionals first.
Can I contact you?
If you have any questions, queries or comments you can contact me at Zac at ZacsGarden dot com.
I would love to see images of your progress, so please don't be shy to let me know of how you get on.
HERE'S THE SITUATION. You need to put some type of shed in your backyard for the family bikes and of course the lawn mower and a few other items. So far so good, but what if your HOA won't let you have a shed that sticks out over the top of your fence? The Rubbermaid Slide-Lid Shed is low enough to hide behind your fence, but tall enough to store adult bicycles in and may be just what you are looking for.
This form of storage shed has become quite popular over the last few years.
They offer a significant amount of storage space in a low-key shed that may help you avoid issues with planning regulations.
They are exceptionally easy to assemble in comparison to many of the full-height walk-in sheds.
Before you invest in a Rubbermaid Slide-Lid Shed, you need to think very carefully about what you plan to store in it. While there is enough room for three or four bikes or a riding lawn mower, if you need more space this type of shed may not be your best choice.
These sheds are perfect for anyone who is interested in easy access storage for items they expect to need on a frequent basis.
If you are looking for a long-term storage solution, you may want to invest in building a full-size shed, if you can secure a permit to do so.
Introducing the Rubbermaid Slide-Lid Shed made from top quality recyclable heavy-duty plastic. At only 53 inches tall, this shed has been designed to fit comfortably under the standard fence height. Despite the reduced height, there is plenty of room for your long-handled tools, a push or riding lawnmower, or your family's bikes.
Unlike many plastic sheds, this one features impact-resistant double-wall construction and has built-in rollers to help make slide the roof back a breeze. Not only does the roof slide back halfway, but this shed features double front doors that open wide enough to fit most riding lawnmowers.
|Low Maintenance||There is a lot of tough competition|
|Weather resistant||Shed needs to be placed on a foundation|
|Ease of access||Door hinges are made of plastic|
|Fits under standard fences||Shed needs to be secured to the foundation|
|Solid construction||Hard to assemble|
Take a quick look at this video, it shows the many advantages of the Rubbermaid Slide-Lid Shed and gives you a good idea why this is one of the most popular sheds in its class.
So let's take a look at the different features this shed has to offer and why they benefit you.
One of the top features of the Rubbermaid Slide-Lid Shed is the recyclable polypropylene resin it is made from. Using this material and double-wall construction this shed is leakproof dent resistant, and weather resistant, making it perfect for year-round use, no matter where you live and what the weather does. The new resin is designed to resist the UV rays of the sun and help keep the colors from fading.
They are also far tougher than plastics used just a few years ago and those used by many other plastic shed manufacturers. The olive/sandstone coloring blends in nicely with most surroundings and never needs to be repainted or re-varnished. The resin will not rot, decay, or fall apart no matter what Mother Nature throws at it.
The walls are designed to interlock with the floor during assembly to help seal them together and keep the structure waterproof. The roof is bolted in place, creating a remarkably strong finished structure that can stand up to strong winds, and heavy storms.
One of the biggest advantages of plastic sheds like the Rubbermaid Slide-Lid Shed is that they require little to nothing in the way of maintenance. The only thing you need to do to keep your shed looking its best is to give it a wash down with your garden hose from time to time. You can, of course, get a bucket of soapy water and a brush to scrub it down in the event it gets really dirty.
No one could blame you for thinking you might have to crawl over things stored in this shed to get to that one item hiding in the back. With this shed, the roof slides back on silky smooth rollers to expose the front half of the shed as you can see in this image. This in combination with dual doors that open the full width of the shed makes getting in and out simple, even when you have your hands full.
If you are going to store valuable items such as bicycles, lawnmowers, riding mowers, tools, or your outdoor gear in a shed, it must have a way to keep everything safe. The Slide-Lid Shed uses a trademarked “cane-bolt locking system” that locks the roof and both doors together and provides you with a hasp loop you can put a padlock through.
A Strong Built-In FloorImage courtesy of Ebay
If you are going to put a shed in your backyard to keep your property, clean, dry, and safe, your shed needs to have a floor. This shed offers a heavy-duty impact resistant floor that has been designed to handle the constant wheeling in and out of heavy equipment. However, for maximum strength, the shed must be sitting on a solid foundation such as concrete, pavers, or wood. The floor is also designed to be anchored to the ground via 11 anchor points.
Assembling the Slide-Lid shed is going to take you a few hours, but what's your hurry? Take your time, follow the detailed assembly manual, and do a good job the first time.
You will need the help of an assistant when it comes to assembling the roof. One must apply slight pressure, the other is needed to align and secure the roof to the walls using screws from the inside. The manual contains a lot of tips to help make assembling the shed go more smoothly for you. For example, using dish soap to make attaching the panels together easier, and not using a power screwdriver so you don't strip out any threads.
No shed is complete without some form of shelving to put your outdoor gear, tools, hoses, and just about anything else you don't want on the floor. This shed comes complete with a set of wall anchors you can use to add shelving, storage hooks, a pegboard, or anything else you need to hang on the wall. The assembly manual includes the dimensions for shelving to make sure you cut the boards the right length, the first time.
Before you make the final decision regarding buying a Rubbermaid Slide-Lid Shed, be sure it is the right size to fit your needs. There is nothing worse than buying a shed, spending the time to put it together, finding the perfect place for it, only to find it's too small.
Spend a little time looking at what you plan to put in your shed to make sure the one you buy will fit your needs now and in the future.
There is an old saying that goes, “the proof of the pudding is in the eating.” Loosely translated, this means that the only way to tell if a product is any good, is to try it out for yourself. In this particular case, it can be a major hassle trying out several sheds in your backyard before you decide on only one of them.
So, what we did to make things a lot easier for you, is scour the web searching out testimonials from people who have purchased the Rubbermaid Slide-Lid shed. What we found, is a number of very positive endorsements from buyers who were more than happy with their new shed.
The overall opinion seems to be that buyers love the solid construction, simplicity of assembly, and the built-in shelf bracket anchors. Comments such as “Great shed!” are a common sight no matter where you look. There are even more that are titled simply “Five Stars.” But don't just take our word for it, take a look at the many customer testimonials for yourself right here
To help show you the difference we are also going to show you a couple of the nearest contenders.
This shed features a poly resin double-wall construction, double doors, and a sliding roof for ease of access. Assembly is relatively easy using the bolt-together method.
The multi-wall panels add extra strength and stability. Construction is easy using extra-large plastic screws that won't strip out. The walls are only four feet tall. This is a good shed for those storing a lawnmower, but may be a bit short for bikes.
|Suncast Glidetop Slide Lid Shed||Rubbermaid Slide-Lid Shed|
|48-inch walls||52-inch walls|
|No shelf brackets||Built-in ready to use shelf brackets|
|Bolt together assembly||Pressure fit and screw assembly|
|Under $500||Over $500|
From Lifetime, UV protected high-density polyethylene shed offers dual full-width front doors, a controlled spring lid, and room enough for two large trash cans.
The design features a wide front stance instead of the narrow front seen on the Rubbermaid. This design might be useful for those who are putting this shed on a deck or porch.
When you need a dry place for your family's bikes, a lawnmower, garden tools, your camping gear, or anything else, the Rubbermaid shed is a great option. For those of you with limited space or dealing with an HOA or local planning board, this is the perfect shed, it is designed to fit under a standard six-foot fence out of sight. The sliding roof makes getting in and out of this shed a breeze.
With dual full-width doors and a sliding roof, getting in and out of your shed has never been easier and the polyurethane resin construction will provide you with many years of reliable storage.
If you are ready to learn more about the Rubbermaid Slide-Lid Shed, click right here!
Long before you bolt the first two pieces of your new garden shed together, you need to decide what type of foundation it should be sitting on. Like any other structure, your needs a good strong foundation under it to perform at its best. When it comes to any type of building, the foundation's job is to support the walls just as their job is to support the roof. Nothing is more important to the life of your shed than a good foundation.
There are many reasons why you shouldn't just plop your shed on the ground. The lack of a foundation can lead to rot or rust, you will always be fighting the growth of weeds and grass in your shed, and in time you will find the doors no longer function properly. One option for putting a firm foundation under your shed is a foundation kit.
Some manufacturers offer foundation kits for their sheds and there are a number of companies that offer their own. These kits offer a firm foundation that can be used to support most standard sized sheds and come in various styles.
With some kits, you may need to purchase extra supplies. For example, the foundation kits offered by Arrow require you to buy multiple sheets of plywood to build the floor. Bear in mind you should never place your shed directly on the ground as this can lead to significant damage to the structure.
First, let's talk about what a substrate is. According to the dictionary, a substrate is a “substance or layer that underlies something.” Sounds a bit confusing, doesn't it? In this particular case, what we are talking about it putting something on the ground between it and your shed's foundation. There are two different reasons for putting your shed's foundation on something besides plain dirt. First, a layer of gravel will give any water a way to drain into the soil. Secondly, using gravel will provide much better support for your shed's foundation and its accompanying shed along with everything you plan to put in it.
For this particular application, you should be able to use the larger size gravel as you want the spaces between each piece of gravel for drainage purposes.
Alternatively, you could use pavers spaced at intervals to provide the necessary support for your foundation. But, if you are going to do so, be sure you use enough to provide adequate support for your foundation and shed.
There are several different styles of shed foundation for you to choose from.
This particular type of foundation is built as a framework with an outer frame along with inner stringers. The finished product may look a little like a studded wall laying on the ground or it may look like the game board from Celebrity Squares. These foundations can be built from steel or wood and provide outstanding support for your shed. Typically, they are bolted together for extra strength and durability, but some of the cheaper wood kits are nailed together (try to avoid these as they have a limited lifespan).
Typically, these are made from timber pieces that can be assembled by two people in a short period of time. They are designed to be staked in place at all four corners using large spikes. Before installing this type of foundation, you should lay a sheet of plastic down and cover it with a layer of pea gravel for better drainage and keep weeds and grass from growing. The good thing about this type of shed foundation is that you can easily move it when the time comes.
This type of shed foundation uses a series of lightweight polyethylene grids that can be assembled to match the size of your shed and can be assembled in minutes. The grids are fully reusable, and can easily be cut to size as needed. These kits are relatively affordable and because they are lightweight can be shipped directly to your home. This material will not rot or rust a major problem with wood and metal foundations.
There are several advantages to using a shed foundation kit to support your shed, including:
If you plan to use a concrete slab foundation, you have to worry about the composition of the soil where you plan to pour the slab. If your soil has a lot of clay in it, you have to worry about expansion and contraction over time. This will eventually cause your foundation to shift and crack.
If you have trees planted near the location you have in mind for your shed, they will eventually reach a point where they start to grow under your slab. In time, the roots will begin to lift your slab, causing it to crack and break. When you use a foundation kit, you don't have to worry about tree roots causing this type of damage.
Unless you take the time to build in proper drainage, you may end up with water coming up over the foundation and getting into your shed. In most cases, the average homeowner has no idea what the drainage is like where they plan to put their shed. Drainage is never a problem with a shed foundation kit.
Unless you can pour your own slab, the average shed foundation kit will cost significantly less than having a cement company come to your house to pour your shed foundation. Even if you can pour your own cement, buy the time you pay for all the necessary tools, the framing, the cement, and the cement mixer, you will have spent far more money than the cost of the average foundation kit.
Not all shed manufacturers offer purpose-built foundation kits for their sheds. Many believe the built-in floors they supply are all that is needed. Here is a look at the more popular brands and whether or not they offer foundation kits.
|Little Cottage Company||No|
This is only a small sample of the many shed manufacturers on the market, but they are also among the best-selling brands available. As you can see only a couple of the companies offer matching foundations. Many believe that the floor of their sheds is strong enough. But the reality is that even these sheds need to be supported by some form of foundation. But those that do offer foundation kits, offer kits that are perfectly matched and designed for their sheds, thus providing the best possible support.
There are several steps involved in the installation of your shed foundation kit.
This may be the most important part of setting the foundation for your shed. Using the method described above, make sure the ground you plan to put your shed on is perfectly level. Not being level can lead to water intrusion, but it can also put undue stresses on certain areas of your shed, leading to early failure.
Once you have leveled the loose soil, you have a couple of choices. You can tamp the soil down to create a firm base and place the foundation directly on the ground, but this is not necessarily your best option as the soil will eventually erode causing your shed to lean. A better plan would be to level the soil, place a layer of landscaping fabric on top of it, and then cover the fabric with a layer of pea gravel. This will provide a much firmer base for your shed foundation kit to sit on, plus you have improved drainage, and won't have to worry about erosion.
Assemble your shed foundation kit according to the manufacturer's instructions and lay it in place on your prepared soil. Even if the manufacturer doesn't suggest securing the foundation in place, you should consider doing so. Use several large spikes hammered deep into the ground to secure the foundation firmly in place. By securing your shed's foundation to the ground, your shed is more likely to be able to withstand any high winds the area you live in happen to experience.
The last part of the installation is to add any flooring materials the manufacturers suggest. For example, Arrow foundations require the addition of sheets of 3/4-inch pressure treated plywood for flooring, before you put your shed on top of it. Once everything is in place, be sure to recheck the entire foundation for level before you install the shed.
As long as you have not installed the shed, you can always make any necessary adjustments. Once you have the weight of the shed to deal with, making any adjustments could be next to impossible.
One last thought, be sure to take your time preparing the ground you plan to install your shed on. The success or failure of any building is only as good as the foundation it is built on. Make sure the shed foundation kit you choose is the right size for your shed and is strong enough to support the weight of your shed and everything you plan to put in it.
THERE IS SOMETHING ABOUT BUILDING a shed from scratch. It can be more fun, more and you can put your stamp on it. Here is one design can easily be built over the course of a weekend.
If you want to build this shed, there are a few things you will need and a few steps you should take before getting started.
No shed is going to last very long if it is not sitting on level ground. Using a spirit level mounted on the side of a 12-foot-long 2×4, check the spot where you plan to place your shed to make sure it's level. One great way to make the spot level is to dig out the grass, loose the soil and then tamp it down checking constantly for level.
What goes under your shed is up to you. You can cover the area in pea gravel, pour a concrete slab, or use paving stones to create a solid foundation. The one thing you don't want to do is place your shed on bare soil as this will invite rot, water damage, and numerous pests to destroy your shed. Remember the best building in the world is only as good as the foundation it is sitting on.
The floor frame is essentially a box frame with joists inside of it to provide support for the flooring.
Stick-built walls are built in much the same way as you just built the floor frame, flat on the ground. Each wall is built separately.
At all times when building each wall and when assembling the walls to the floor, be sure to use a level and a square. Building walls that are perfectly perpendicular to the ground and square with each other.
If you don't, building the rest of your shed is going to be that much more difficult. What you may not realize, is that building this shed is not much more (or less for that matter) than building a house. The success of the entire structure depends on the quality of your construction work from start to finish. Take your time at every phase of the construction in order to ensure the success of your project.
The roof you put on your shed will determine how well-protected everything you put inside will be. Built a crappy roof, the rains and snow will destroy it and flood the interior.
While you could stick with tar paper for your roofing material, shingles will give you a much stronger and more weatherproof roof.
This shed has one door and two windows providing you with easy access and plenty of light and ventilation. Each must be properly framed in for maximum structural integrity.
You can use glass or Plexiglass for your windows. Glass has the added advantage of staying crystal clear and being easy to clean. Plexiglass is much easier to work with and doesn't break, but at the same time, it will yellow and become cloudy over time. Both will keep the rain, snow, dust, debris, thieves, and the local cats out.
If you have followed along, by now you should have a complete 6×6 foot shed sitting in your garden and ready to be used. The only thing left for you to do is to decide what color you want it to be. You need to paint your shed in order to protect the wood from Mother Nature. If you don't, the wood will quickly rot and become severely damaged.
The most important thing you can do during the construction of your shed is to make good use of a square and level to ensure your final product is perfectly square. This will ensure all the pieces fit together properly and that the door will function smoothly. Other than this, take your time, being in a hurry typically results in errors being made, many of which can be costly to overcome (i.e. buying more lumber).
Building a 6×6-foot garden shed is something that anyone who is good with tools should be able to do. As with any other type of “stick built” project, I can't stress enough the importance of measuring twice and cutting once. For myself, I measure thrice just to be on the safe side. This shed is easy to build, take your time, have fun, and enjoy the results of your hard work.
Image courtesy Lifetime.com
JUST MADE THE DECISION TO ADD a garden shed to your backyard?
Now the fun begins.
There are so many different sheds on the market, it can drive you crazy trying to find the right one to fit your needs or budget. If you are basing your judgment of Lifetime sheds on the “plastic” sheds of years ago, you might be in for a nice surprise. These sheds are made to provide you with many years of reliable service.
So, today we are going to take at Lifetime brand polyethylene sheds, one of the leading brands on the market. We are going to look at what makes them so popular from the HDPE polyethylene used to make each part to the powder-coated steel reinforcement used throughout. These sheds are loaded with features many of the other brands simply don't offer or come up short on.
Look What Lifetime Sheds Had to Offer:
|Steel trusses for roof||Yes|
|Steel reinforcement in walls||Yes|
|Can be enlarged||Yes|
|Metal parts powder-coated||Yes|
|All parts made in U.S.A.||Yes|
During the early days of polyethylene sheds, the materials used were simply not up to the job they were being tasked with. Often, these materials would fade and warp under the sun or become brittle and break in freezing temperature. In most cases, people who purchased these early sheds ended up angry and spending, even more, money on a wood or metal shed.
Lifetime continues to invest heavily in researching and developing stronger and better materials. The polyethylene materials used in Lifetime sheds are the result of this research. They have been tested to ensure they can stand up to anything Mother Nature has to hammer it with. The roofs are supported in some models with steel trusses to help ensure they can handle heavy snow loads.
The polyethylene used in Lifetime sheds incorporates special UV protectants to ensure it maintains its color without any signs of fading. The protectant also helps to ensure the sun's heat and UV rays will not cause the material to warp. Your lifetime shed will continue to look new for many years.
Lifetime sheds feature a steeply pitched roof designed to ensure rain, snow, and ice can easily slide off, reducing the amount of load it must carry. For those of you who live in areas where it tends to snow significant amounts at a time, Lifetime sheds also feature powder coated steel A-frame style trusses for added support. Depending on the model you choose, your shed may feature a skylight to help provide you with plenty of natural daylight. All skylights are fully sealed to keep water and snow out.
Having a strong roof is only the beginning of what makes Lifetime sheds worth more than a second look. The walls are the most vital part of any structure, including a shed. This walls that offer very little in the way of structural strength or support are of very little use to anyone. Many low-cost sheds are built using single-wall polyethylene construction, making them weak and easily broken into. No one wants that.
Lifetime sheds are made using double-wall construction from high-density polyethylene (HDPE) construction and steel reinforcement. This material and design offer superior support, improved weather and theft protection, and exceptional good looks. One more thing you should know about double-wall construction is that the walls act in some ways like double-glazed windows by using the air gap as a form of insulation. The extra-thick polyethylene double-wall construction also helps to prevent rocks slung from under your lawn mower causing damage.
One of the most common complaints with many brands of polyethylene and resin sheds is that they use plastic hardware to assemble them. While there a few brands that seem to think their plastic hardware is more than strong enough for use in assembling a shed. The problem with this is that many of their customers find out the hard way that plastic hardware may not be their best option.
Lifetime sheds use steel hardware that has been treated to prevent rust. This hardware will not break under high winds or heavy loads like plastic hardware that can easily break under these conditions. Now imagine a shed that uses plastic hardware to secure the doors and keep thieves out. A determined thief can break into this type of shed in minutes. Lifetime sheds feature all-metal locking hardware to ensure your shed and its contents remain safe and sound.
There are a number of resin/polyethylene sheds designed to be assembled by snapping the parts together. While you might think that assembly should be simpler on these sheds, they can often be hard to actually get all the pieces to actually fit together. In many cases, a big rubber mallet has to be used. Then the first time a strong wind blows through your area, they blow apart so quickly it will blow your mind.
Sheds, such as those from Lifetime, that are assembled using the bolt-together method are far stronger and less likely to be affected by strong winds. While it might take longer to assemble this type of shed, the pieces tend to line up more quickly and the overall assembly is easier. The worst thing you have to do is set aside a little more time and patience to build the shed.
Another very common problem with many polyethylene sheds is that they come with a thin plastic floor or no floor at all. In many cases, you would be better off buying one that has no floor than one that has a thin single layer of plastic. Lifetime sheds come with a double-wall polyethylene non-slip floor that is reinforced for maximum weight capacity.
The material chosen for the floor is resistant to stains, oils, and solvents allowing you to make more use of your shed for things like storing lawn mowers, paints, solvents and just about anything else you can imagine. You should, however, build a strong platform or foundation to set your shed on. You can pour a concrete slab, make a foundation from pavers, create one from gravel, or simply flatten out the ground (though this is not recommended).
Measuring in at 90x114x70 inches, this Lifetime shed features 4 large skylights for added natural lighting, a pair of vents for better airflow, and a single shatterproof window. Inside you will find a customizable shelving system that adds even more versatility. The steel-reinforced high-arch double doors create an opening that is 4′ x 6′ with locking mechanisms inside and out. Comes with a high-density polyethylene floor that is resistant to stains, chipping, and peeling.
|Steel A-truss reinforced double wall roof||Time-consuming assembly|
|Steel reinforced double constructed walls||Assembly manual poor|
|Bolt together construction using steel bolts||Threaded holes may strip out using metal screws|
This Lifetime shed measures a full 12-feet long for those who need plenty of storage space. The entire shed is made from low-maintenance UV-resistant HDPE (high-density polyethylene) that has been designed to resist weather damage. Both the roof and walls are made using double-construction and include steel reinforcing to ensure maximum load support. Best of all this shed comes with a 10-year manufacturer's warranty.
|Steel-reinforced double-wall construction||Steel screws tend to strip out plastic threads|
|Lockable steel-reinforced doors||Some issues with panel alignment|
|UV-protected for long-life||Installation manual needs work|
The extra-wide Lifetime shed measures a full 11 feet wide and 13 feet deep. There are 2 shatterproof windows and a vent at each end of the shed to provide plenty of ventilation. The steel reinforced high-arch roof not only helps rain and snow to slide off, it provides 6'8″ of headroom at the peak. The HDPE double walls have built-in steel reinforcement to help with load carrying ability and added security. The shed also features a fully customizable shelving system.
|2 shatterproof-windows and 2 vents||Challenging assembly|
|High-pitched roof with steel trusses for support||Threaded holes in plastic strip out easily|
|Steel-reinforced doors for added security||Doors need a way to adjust the alignment|
At 8 x 7.5 feet, this Lifetime Shed is the perfect size for your lawn mower and a large selection of your favorite garden tools. It features a single shatterproof window, 3 skylights, and 2 vents for added ventilation. The roof, walls, and doors are made from durable double-wall HDPE construction with steel reinforcement for added support and security. This shed features a customizable shelving system that lets you set up your shelves to meet any needs.
|High-pitched roof provides 6'8″ of headroom||Screw holes tend to strip|
|Sturdy plastic non-slip floor||Assembly manual leaves a lot to be desired|
|Durable HDPE material designed to last years||Challenging assembly for one or two people|
This Lifetime shed features double doors on one side instead of the end, making it easier to use as an equipment storage shed. The roof features skylights, durable double-wall HDPE construction, and powder-coated steel support trusses. There are two small windows in the front and a single window in the rear, all made from shatterproof polycarbonate. High-grade steel screws are used throughout the construction process to ensure superior stability.
|Powder-coated steel reinforcement used throughout construction||Skylights would work better if they were clear instead of opaque|
|3 windows and 2 skylights||Tends to leak in the rain|
|Low-maintenance UV resistant materials||Assembly manual is very poor|
If the many sheds offered by Lifetime are not exactly what you are looking for, perhaps a resin of HDPE shed is not what you should be considering. There are several metal sheds that may fit your needs. Here is one worth considering, bear in mind that metal sheds can be more expensive and far more challenging to assemble.
This metal shed from Arrow features simple to assemble parts that are pre-drilled and pre-cut that makes assembly easier. All galvanized-steel parts are coated with a baked-on enamel to help minimize any risk of corrosion. The design includes a mid-wall brace for added stability. There is a total of 440 square feet of storage space and a large door opening that should give you more than enough room for most riding mowers.
|Sheet metal offers excellent strength and durability||Even galvanized steel will rust in time|
|Bolt together design withstands high wind||Must be set on a foundation or pad|
|Plenty of space for a riding lawn mower||Very difficult to assemble|
Today's top-quality HDPE sheds offer a wide range of sizes and designs for you to choose from. The entire range is durable and well-constructed and ready to take on any challenge. They HDPE material used in their construction is resistant to the sun's UV rays and just about anything else mother nature can throw at it. In my humble opinion, all of these sheds make an excellent choice, just be sure to match the one you buy with your needs and budget.
RESIN SHEDS HAVE COME a long way over the last 10 years.
Who can say no to a shed that is virtually maintenance free, looks quite nice and easy to put together?
Because of this, they are now one of the most popular choices for homeowners wanting a little extra storage space. But do the pros outweigh the cons? And what makes Suncast Horizontal Storage Sheds different from the rest?
In this article, we take a deep look into one of the most popular brands for outdoor horizontal storage. We go through the 5 main reasons that make their sheds different from others.
One of the most common reasons given for not buying a resin shed has long been that the resin materials. In the past they simply could not hold up to being left out in all types of weather for long periods of time. This idea was not something that was dreamed up by a few disgruntled buyers. It was in fact based on a lot of truth.
This being said, the earliest forms of resin and plastics used in the construction of sheds did not hold up as well as they were advertised to do. That was then, this is now.
The newer resins are impervious to summer's highest temperatures and winter's coldest freezes, along with the sun's UV rays that can cause fading, cracking, and warping. For years these were the bane of resin sheds as the materials many other companies used.
What I have found after having a Suncast horizontal storage shed out on my back deck for several years, is that the colors have faded just a little. But, the resin materials have held up exceptionally well. It hits the high 90s all summer long and plunges below freezing for a large part of the winter season where I live, so the resin gets a real workout.
The problem with many resin sheds is that they are made with using a single-wall construction method. This means that all there is between what you are storing inside and the outside world is a single thin layer of plastic. This same thin layer of plastic also has to support the roof and any snow weight that might accumulate.
Every Suncast horizontal storage shed is built using double wall construction. The walls are 1 1/2-inches thick. Double wall construction stronger and more capable of supporting the weight of the roof and any snow accumulation without letting you down. As a side note, the air gap between the two layers of plastic also adds a little insulation to help protect your possessions.
With two layers of plastic, if your mower slings a rock, there is less of a chance it might puncture both layers and damage something inside.
The only real hardware on most horizontal sheds are the hinges used to hang the doors and any latches or locking mechanisms. Some low-budget brands use plastic hardware because not only does it cost less, but it can also be molded into a wide variety of beautiful shapes. Plastic or resin hinges simply can not hold up to continuous load bearing and movement such as would be seen when being used to hold up shed doors.
This same basic principle holds for plastic latches and locking mechanisms. But, even if they do hold up, any thief can cut through them in a few seconds with a good sharp knife. Suncast horizontal storage sheds use all metal hardware for the hinges and locking/latching mechanisms to ensure you never have to worry about them breaking or being cut.
There are two methods of assembly commonly used in resin storage sheds, the first is snapping the pieces together until they form a relatively sturdy complete assembly. The other involves bolting all the pieces together one piece at a time to create a strong and supportive structure.
While snap together might seem like a good idea as assembly take very little time, the entire project can take as little as a couple of hours. However, this type of assembly is not particularly strong in many cases and may come apart in high winds.
By choosing to use a bolt-together construction method, Suncast is able to offer a complete line of storage sheds that use this type of construction. Providing you have taken the time to secure your shed to the ground, bolting it together ensures it will far more able to hold up to high winds, heavy rains, and larger snow loads. By virtue of the Suncast engineering department, assemble is still relatively easy and requires a minimum of skill and a few hand tools.
At the bottom of your shed should be a reinforced plastic floor that can handle your heavier loads. All Suncast horizontal storage sheds come with a reinforced resin floor designed to take on the weight of your heavier loads. This may not seem very important when you are first looking at horizontal storage sheds, especially if you are putting yours out on a deck or patio.
But once you start loading your shed with everything you plan to keep in it and that cheap thin floor starts to bow or crack, you will only end up regretting that decision. With a Suncast horizontal storage shed, the floor is fully reinforced so that you can store things like your smoker, a lawnmower, several bicycles, potting soil in bags, or just about anything else you can think of.
Now that you know what makes Suncast the leader in horizontal storage sheds, let's take a quick look at five of their best sellers.
As with all Suncast horizontal storage sheds, this one is made using heavy duty resin double wall construction. Along with the double doors on one end, it also features a sliding roof that permits walk-in access. The floor has been reinforced so that it can support the weight of your lawn tractor along with anything else you need to put in it. At 52x58x60 inches, you can store several bicycles in this shed with room to spare.
|Heavy-duty resin double wall construction||The plastic bolts tend to break|
|Heavy-duty reinforced floor||Must be placed on a foundation|
|Fast-easy construction||Some issues with missing pieces in the box|
This shed features a 3-door locking system for extra security. The easy-lift lid uses a prop-rod to hold it open and make accessing the double doors easier. The walls and roof are built from heavy-duty resin double wall construction that can handle anything Mother Nature and your kids can throw at it. Easy bolt-together assembly creates a strong structure in less than a couple of hours.
|Easy bolt-together assembly||Must be placed on a foundation for best support|
|Reinforced floor||May not hold up to high winds|
|Panels line up easily||Top may warp and not lie flat|
Made from durable 1 1/2-inch thick double wall resin construction, this horizontal shed offers double doors that measure 46 3/4-inches wide, plenty of room for you to get your mower or bikes in and out. The sturdy doors use all metal hardware to ensure they continue to work for many years. The sturdy floor is fully reinforced to handle heavier loads and assembly is simple with a few hand tools.
|Extra-wide doors||Plastic screws may break|
|1 1/2-inch thick resin double wall construction||Missing hardware|
|Fast Easy Assembly||Some issues with gaps in finished product|
This Suncast horizontal shed offers a full 34 cubic feet of storage space and measures 53×32-1/2×45-1/2″, which is plenty of room for a mower, a couple of bikes, your potting soil, pots, and miscellaneous tools. The double doors have a built-in hasp to help keep thieves at bay. The floor is reinforced to help support heavier items and the resin material used in the construction will resist the sun's UV rays and both extremes of temperature.
|Hasp for padlock built-in||Quality control issues|
|Reinforced floor||Roof uses plastic hinges|
|46 1/4″ wide doors||Door may not stay closed|
This is a massive horizontal storage shed measuring a massive 70 cubic feet. The easy-open lid is equipped with a pair of gas shocks to help lift and keep it up. You can fit two huge 96-gallon trash cans inside. Built right here in the U.S., this shed measures 5 ft. 5-1/2 in. W x 3 ft. 2-1/2 in. D x 4 ft. 1-1/2 in. on the inside. The reinforced floor features a built-in ramp that lets you easily roll heavier items in and out.
|Massive 70-cu.ft. storage capacity||Challenging assembly|
|Plenty of rooms for your bikes or mower||Must be placed on a flat surface or foundation|
|Heavy-duty resin double wall construction||Instructions hard to follow|
What if a resin Suncast horizontal storage shed doesn't seem like it will meet with your needs? There is another more expensive option you might want to consider. There are several different types of wood horizontal storage sheds worth considering such as this one:
This horizontal storage shed features tongue and groove all-wood construction with three doors for easy access. All hardware used in the construction is rated for outdoor use. It measures 61 x 36 inches on the inside, 47 inches at the front, and 51 inches at the back. The lid is designed to stay in place without assistance and the doors are lockable to help keep out stray critters.
|Weather resistant all-wood construction||Long construction time|
|Acrylic-coated hardware||No floor|
|Strong tongue and groove construction||Flimsier than it looks|
When it comes to resin horizontal storage sheds, Suncast is one of the leaders in the field. The heavy-duty 1 1/2-inch double resin wall construction is resistant. Resistant to the sun's UV rays, extremes in temperature, and your kids. I have had mine for several years and highly recommend any of those listed above. Also remember is that any resin shed you buy must be installed on a foundation or other sturdy flat surface.
If you have any information you would like to see here, please contact us here.
If you are planning to build or add a garden shed to your backyard, the most important step is to build a firm foundation for it to sit on.
A good paver shed foundation is the perfect base for your shed and not as hard to build as you might think.
Since building a paver shed foundation involves a certain amount of hard labor, it is always good to know just how much work you are going to be involved in.
The good news is that unless you are building a massive shed that is more like a barn than a shed, you should be able to complete this project in a weekend, leaving you with a little time at the end of each day for an ice-cold beer or two. On top of this, once your foundation is complete, it will be immediately ready for use, unlike concrete that needs time to cure before it can be used.
Before you start building your garden shed or laying the paver shed foundation, you need to take a good look at the ground in the area you plan to install your new shed. There are a few things to be taken into consideration before you choose your final location.
If at all possible choose an area that is already reasonably level. Not only will this make building a level paver shed foundation much easier, it will take fewer materials and less time to build.
You should never build any type of foundation on ground that does not drain well. Ground that is continuously wet or subjected to flowing water is only likely to erode potentially causing significant problems further down the line.
No matter how you plan to install the pavers, try to avoid ground that is simply too hard to dig in or has a lot of rocks just below the surface. All you will be doing is creating more work for yourself or putting yourself in an almost impossible position.
It should go without saying that you should not pick an area of your yard or garden where the ground constantly remains wet and soft. At least if you don't want to see your paver shed foundation and shed to tilt into the ground.
The next good thing on our list is that pavers are very simple to find and come in an incredible array of sizes, shapes, and colors. You can go for the basic square concrete colored paver or step up to colors and patterns that extend beyond the walls of your shed to create a patio.
For the most part I prefer to use pavers that are 2 inches thick and 12 inches square. They are more than strong enough to support the shed when you build a proper paver shed foundation. At the same time, they are light enough for you to handle without too much strain. These should be readily available at your nearest discount hardware superstore or local garden store.
While you could simply lay the pavers on flat ground and call it a foundation, this is really not the best idea. But if you are going to build a paver shed foundation that will not only support the weight of your shed, but also last a lifetime, you will need a few tools and supplies to get the job done. These include:
Since your new paver shed foundation must be built strong enough to last for many years, every step of the building process has to be completed carefully and exactly, starting with marking out the space you plan to use.
To do this mark out each side of the space forming a square. The easiest way to make sure all four corners are square is to measure the distance between each pair of diagonally opposed corners. If they are the same, your corners are square. This method will work for both square and rectangular shaped foundations.
Now that you have the area needed for your foundation marked out, it's time to get started with the fun part. So, grab your favorite work gloves and shovel and start digging. You need to dig the area to a depth of approximately six inches. This will give enough space for the gravel base, the sand and cement filler, and the pavers, leaving them at or just above ground level.
Once you have the soil dug out to the appropriate level, it needs to be compacted. Break out that rented vibrating compactor and go to town. Depending on the size of your foundation, this shouldn't take very long. However, it is a very important step as your foundation needs a firm base to stand upon.
The next step is to add a one-inch layer of gravel to the hole. Be sure to use either 21A or 21B gravel as it contains fillers to help fill in the air gaps between the pieces of gravel providing you with a much firmer base.
Once again you need to use the compactor to pack the gravel in place and create a smooth flat surface. Be sure to check your gravel layer using the 2×4 and spirit level to ensure it is perfectly level before proceeding to the next step.
Mix together the sand and cement and then add a 2-inch layer of this mixture to the gravel. Smooth out the sand and then compact it to form a tightly compacted layer that is perfect level or as close as you can get to it. Making sure each layer is level is vital to the finished product. If one layer ends up being off kilter then every other layer you add on top of it will be off as well. The final result will be a shed that sits tilted and may end up being damaged.
Lay the pavers in the appropriate pattern covering the entire area and check each for level with the others. If you find any that are not level, you can use the rubber mallet to tap them down at each corner until they are level. Take your time with this step as any paver that happens to be out of level might crack or break once the shed is put in place, leaving a weak spot in your finished foundation.
Whether you decided on the plastic or metal garden border, take it and install it around the outer edges of the pavers. It needs to be placed as close as possible to the pavers, any gap only leaves a place for weeds to grow. Anchor the border to the ground using the spikes provided with it or stakes you have purchased separately.
Image courtesy of Pinterest
Spread a layer of the cement and sand mixture used in the foundation over the top of the pavers. Use a broom to spread the sand into the gaps, filling them in until they are flush with the pavers. Using your garden hose and a fine mist nozzle, lightly dampen the entire surface of your new paver shed foundation and walk away.
The water will cause the blend of sand and cement to solidify, permanently holding the pavers in place and creating an exceptionally strong foundation. It will also seal the gaps between the pavers, helping to keep water, ice, and snow from getting under the pavers and causing them to lift or crack. If you don't do this step, your foundation is likely to fail earlier than it should.
There is a fair amount of work involved in laying a paver shed foundation. However, when you are done and sitting back looking at your new foundation, you will find all the hard work more than worth it. Of anything you can do when building your foundation, making sure each subsequent level is as level as you can possibly make it is the most important.
A tilted shed may have doors that don’t open and close properly, windows that won't work, and poor water drainage. Take your time with every step and you will have a paver shed foundation that might just outlast a shed or two.
IS THE GROUND IN YOUR backyard uneven?
Does it tend to collect water right where you plan to build your shed?
If you answered yes to either of these questions, then building a pier foundation might be for you.
Since most sheds have a wooden floor, keeping it out of the water is an important part of making your shed last as long as possible. Building a shed in a place that you know is regularly damp may also void your warranty if you buy yourself a shed kit.
This article will help you with pier basics, including the different types of common pier foundations found, the tools and supplies you need as well as how to build a good shed foundation with piers.
Before you set out to build your pier foundation or add a shed to your backyard, the first thing you need to do is check the rules. Most localities have their own regulations regarding how your shed's foundation can be built, what type of materials can be used, and the size and location of your shed.
The good news is that if you are building a small shed then there is unlikely to be any requirements from the permit office (you can use a map to find your local permit office online, and see their requirements here). If you don’t take the time to figure out the rules before you get started, you may find yourself tearing it all down and starting over. At the same time, you might find yourself paying a relatively large fine for doing it wrong in the first place.
There are two common types of piers use to build shed foundation, treated lumber posts, and concrete. The number of piers needed to properly support your shed is based on the overall size of the shed you plan to build. The concrete piers with a pre-attached wood nailer must be buried into the ground, while the lumber ones must be placed in a hole and secured in place with cement.
The most common of these is the latter, typically made from pressure treated 4 x 4 lumber that is set in concrete creating a strong foundation for your shed. However, both styles can be used with equal success. The rest of it lies in how well you do the job of laying your foundation.
The first step in laying a pier foundation is to prepare the ground where your shed is going to sit. Carefully scrape away any grass, roots, or debris to expose the soil. If the area does not drain properly consider digging down approximately 4 to 6 inches and filling the area with pea gravel. This will help to improve overall drainage.
Start by marking out the perimeter of your shed, use stakes to mark the corners and run string between them.
Once you have marked out the corners, your next step is to mark the location of each pier needed to support your shed. The recommended location of each pier is 4 feet on center. A simpler way to explain this is to create a grid matching the length and width of your shed. Then create a grid in which each square measures four feet by four feet. It should look like this:
At each point where the lines of your grid intersect is where you will be placing the piers. Now that you know how many piers will be needed, you can buy the right number of premade concrete and wood piers or the correct amount of lumber and cement.
Now that you have a map of where you plan to lay the piers on paper, it's time to mark out the locations on the ground. There are a couple of ways you can do this. First, you can run strings along the ground to create the same grid pattern you have on paper and use the points at which they intersect to mark the spot (similar in many ways to “X” marks the spot.
Alternatively, you can measure each location carefully and use spray paint to mark the locations. However, this method may not be as accurate as the crossed string method above.
No matter which of these methods you choose, take your time. Accuracy is of the utmost importance at this point if you want your shed to be properly supported no matter what you plan to store in it.
With all pier locations marked on the ground, it's time to dig in, literally. Grab your favorite leather work gloves and your favorite shovel, you have a lot of digging to do. Each hole should be 12 inches in diameter and should be dug down at least 12 inches below the frost line in your area. If you are not sure where this line is, you can ask your local city regulatory board, they should have the information for you.
Image courtesy of Deck Piers Depth
Make the holes round instead of square as cylindrical shapes offer far more support than square ones. If you look at many of today's bridges, they feature round piers for support. This follows along the same basic concept.
Pour 4 to 6 inches of gravel into the bottom of each hole and tamp it down. This will create a firm foundation for the wood or concrete piers.
If you are using pre-made concrete and wood piers, you can simply set them in the hole and fill in the holes around them. Once the foundation is attached, they are not going to move.
If you plan to use wood piers, place each pier in a hole, pour cement that has been mixed according to the instructions into the hole so that the hole is filled almost to the top.
At this point, you need to attach a pair of 2x4s to the pier and use your level to ensure the pier remains perfectly upright while the cement sets up. This is perhaps the most important step of the entire process. Piers that are not perfectly set can have a major negative impact on how level and well-supported your shed will be.
If you are using pre-made piers, you need to check for level as you are adding the soil back into the hole. You may even want to use smaller rocks and gravel to help add more support and stability for the piers.
Before you move on to the next phase, adding the foundation, you need to give the cement plenty of time to set. It takes an average of 24 hours for the properly mixed cement to become hard enough to walk on. But it takes approximately 28 days for it to become fully cured and strong enough to hold your wood piers securely in place. If you try to work any faster, you run the risk of damaging the cement and in doing so reducing the risk of your foundation cracking.
After letting the cement cure for the required 28 days, it's time to move onto the next phase. Getting everything ready for your new shed.
Now is the time to decide how far off the ground you want the foundation of your shed to sit. Starting with the shortest post, cut it off to match this height. If possible start at one corner and then move to the opposite corner and do the same.
Use a two by four laying on top of these to mark the rest of the piers so they can be cut to the right height. As long as your 2×4 is not warped this will give a far more accurate measure than trying to do so by measuring each post.
At the same time, if you are using pre-made concrete piers, you will still need to do the same thing to make sure your shed will be level once it is set in place.
The last part involves creating the final foundation for your shed to sit on. There are two ways you can attach the 4×4 framework to the piers. One is to use metal over the top straps, the other is to uses metal mending plates. Both can be used to bolt the pier to the foundation runner.
DO NOT attempt to simply screw the foundation runners to the piers as this type of junction will not provide the necessary amount of structural strength.
The 4x4s are the basis upon which you will be building the rest of the foundation for your shed to sit on.
All that is left now is for you to build the framework upon which your shed will be laid to rest. Follow the instructions that came with your shed or see our tutorial on building frameworks for your shed to sit on.
Which type of pier shed foundation you choose should be based on the land you have to work with, your budget, and how comfortable you are with this type of construction work. Personally, when I built the pier foundation for my shed, I started from scratch with several lengths of pressure treated 4x4s, a load of gravel, and several bags of pre-mixed cement. In the end, I believe this type of pier shed foundation provides the strongest base for most sheds.
I hope this information has been useful to you and helps you decide which type of shed pier foundation to build for your shed.
THE MOST POPULAR FOUNDATION material for a shed is gravel. It's easy to work with, lasts virtually forever, is environmentally friendly, and most of all a gravel foundation will provide exceptional support for your shed.
More importantly, most of today's shed manufacturers recommend you build a gravel shed foundation before they deliver your shed to you. Here are three very important reasons why you should plan on building a gravel pad for your new shed:
One of the reasons a gravel foundation is one of the most popular choices for garden sheds, is that it allows you to spread the weight of your shed and everything it in over the surface of the entire foundation. Other forms of shed foundation such as concrete piers focus all of the weight on smaller areas putting more stress on the framework of your shed, increasing the risk of significant damage.
Even if your backyard is not level or has a small amount of slope to it, a gravel pad gives you the opportunity to create a solid level base upon which to place your shed. By using a wood frame, you can overcome a reasonable amount of slope.
Concrete piers, wood frame foundations, even concrete slabs can raise the floor height of your shed more than you want. Trust me, there is nothing worse than trying to get a lawn mower or other heavy items in and out of a shed that is sitting too high. A gravel shed foundation lets you control the height of your shed and can even let you put your shed at ground level (or at least only slightly above it).
The next major decision is do you build retaining walls to hold the gravel in place or do you go crazy and make your foundation free form?
As we go through the rest of the process, I will go over the benefits of both forms of pad. Each has their own unique features and benefits. Some of this decision is based on the space you have to work with, the type of gravel you plan to use, and the quality of the ground in your backyard.
Let's face it, to most of us, gravel is nothing more than a bunch of crushed up rocks. And while to a certain extent this might be true, there is more to gravel than meets the eye. Gravel comes in a wide range of types and grades, each of which has their uses. There are two main categories of gravel:
Image courtesy Hacker Services LLC (ping pong ball used to show relative size)
There is little difference between these two types of gravel are minor, but for a gravel shed foundation, the 21A variety is the better choice. Often referred to as “1-inch crusher-run gravel” both of these types of gravel have other fine materials mixed in with them. This material helps to fill in the gaps between the larger gravel pieces making it a more stable foundation that will not settle once your shed is placed on it.
Image courtesy Hacker Services LLC
Although these grades of gravel can be similar in size to 21A and 21B, they do not contain any fine materials to help fill in the gaps. This means there is nothing to help hold the gravel in place leaving it to shift around rather than settle into a firm foundation. On top of this, once you place your shed on the foundation, the gravel can still move around, allowing your shed to sink into the ground. This can also cause your shed to become unlevel, which can cause damage to the structure.
Image courtesy thecoverguy.com
If you decide to build a retaining frame around your gravel shed foundation rather than go with a free-form foundation, it is important you use the right type of lumber for the structure. The temptation might be to use standard lumber such as 2x6s to save money, but this is a bad choice. You may also be tempted to use creosote coated lumber such as old railroad ties. As long as you have no intention of growing edible vegetables or fruit within 50 feet of your foundation, this might be okay.
The problem with this is that creosote contains a range of toxic chemicals that are known to be hazardous to your health. The reality is that you really shouldn't use this type of lumber anywhere near your garden. Standard lumber is not strong enough, nor will it (as I found out the hard way) last very long once you bury it in the ground.
The best choice for building the framework around your gravel shed foundation is pressure treated lumber such as 4x4s or 6x6s. Not only will they provide you with a much stronger framework, being pressure treated will help ensure they last for many years without rotting and allowing the gravel to spread out, letting your shed down gradually.
If you plan to build a framework out of timbers, they must be anchored in place before you pour the gravel into your form. If you plan to use a single layer of timbers, you can use lengths of rebar to secure them in place. However, if you need to use more than one layer of timbers, you should use galvanized spikes.
These are available in a variety of lengths to meet your needs at your local hardware superstore. Be sure to buy spikes that are long enough to go through the number of boards you plan to use and then at least 12 inches into the ground to ensure the timbers stay in place.
Just like any other major project you plan to undertake in your garden, there are a certain number of tools needed to build a gravel shed foundation. Among these are:
Now that I have gone over the basics regarding the materials you are likely to need, the next step is to go over building your gravel shed foundation one step at a time, starting with building a retaining wall.
In order to determine how much timber it will take to build the retaining wall, you need to know the overall size of your shed and then add three feet to both the width and the length. This will provide you with enough room for your shed and an extended footer around it to help keep water from getting in it.
Start by marking one corner of your shed with a stake and then mark the other three with stakes. Be sure you have added the required extra space. One way to be sure the stakes are set at the right spots is to measure diagonally between pairs of corners. Much like an equilateral triangle, these measurements should be the same.
Using level find the lowest corner of the ground you plan to use and cut a trench into the ground that goes all the way around the perimeter of your shed. Bear in mind your timbers should be inside the lines created by the stakes you have driven into the ground. (Be sure you use the level to ensure the trench is perfectly level all the way around.
Start out by laying your first layer of timbers in the trench. Next drill several holes through each board and secure them to the ground using rebar or galvanized spikes.
Wherever necessary, add in extra timbers offsetting each corner in much the same manner used in the construction of a log home. This will help to keep the timbers in place. Now secure the timbers together using galvanized spikes spaced out every two to three feet driven into the timber below.
Now comes the fun part, you have a hole in the ground inside the timbers for your gravel shed foundation, the only problem is that it is still full of dirt.
Grab a shovel a pair of gloves and a wheelbarrow to haul away the extra soil.
Depending on the size of your shed, you have a lot of soil to remove. So, put on your leather gloves, grab that shovel, and put it to work. You will need to remove enough soil to lower the level of the ground inside the frame you just finished building until it is at least four inches lower at its highest point below the top of the highest timber.
Finally, it's time to add in the gravel. Be sure you are using 21A or at least 21B gravel. Pour in no more than a 4-inch layer and then use the vibrating compactor to compact the gravel firmly in place. This ensures it won't continue to settle once you have your shed in place.
Use a “screed” (which is a fancy name for a length of wood that reaches from one side of your timber frame to the other) to level the top of the gravel shed foundation. The screed will help reduce the high spots in your gravel by moving the excess gravel into the low spots, filling them in.
Continue doing this until the layer of gravel is level with or slightly below the top of your timbers.
You have just finished building your first gravel shed foundation. Now all you need to do is install your shed and fill it with everything that goes with it.
The only time you should consider building a free-form foundation for your shed is if the ground you plan to put it on is perfectly flat. If you try to use this type of foundation on sloping ground, there is the distinct possibility that the ground under your foundation will erode out from underneath it.
No matter whether you plan to build your free-form foundation on flat ground or a slope, be sure the gravel pad you create is approximately 18 inches bigger on all four sides than your shed. Doing this will allow for a certain amount of corrosion to occur without affecting the stability of your shed.
On a level piece of ground, mark out the corners of your gravel shed foundation allowing for at least 12 inches on each side. Thus, if you have an 8 x 10 shed, your stakes should be set to create a space that measures 10 x 12 feet.
Grab Your Favorite Shovel
It's that time again, grab your gloves and favorite shovel. Remove the top four inches of sod and soil from the space between the markers.
Using a number of 2x4s build a temporary framework around the sides of your foundation hole and stake them in place. You can use the stakes and timbers to create a level frame and set the height of the foundation.
Fill the hole in with gravel and use a screed to level off the gravel.
Use a vibrating compactor to compact the gravel add more gravel to the foundation until you have a pad that is perfectly level and well compacted, then remove the temporary framework.
Once again, congratulations you have built a gravel shed foundation ready to install your new shed in place.
Here's a quick video of the process of preparing a gravel pad for your shed.
There are a few important notes you should be aware of before getting started.
Building a gravel shed foundation does involve a fair amount of hard work. But, the most important thing you need to keep in mind, is that whether you build a framed in foundation or a free-form one, it has to be as close to perfectly level as possible before you put your shed on it. If not, you face the possibility of soil erosion that could end up damaging your shed. I hope this information helps you create the perfect gravel foundation for your garden shed.
IF YOU HAVE BEEN THINKING about building a shed in your backyard, finding just the right design can be a bit challenging. There is more to a good shed than you might think. What might look good in someone else's yard or fit their needs perfectly, might not be of any use to you whatsoever.
There seems to be an endless array of complex shed designs for you to choose from, but in most cases, it is the simple shed designs that seem to work the best. Take a look at these simple shed designs and see if one of these is just the ticket for your storage needs.
Making the most of wood that could have ended up in the dump
When it comes to building a shed on a budget, one of the best ways to save money is by using reclaimed or recycled wood for every part of it you can. Depending on where you live, (at least in my area) there are always old homes being torn down. Most of this wood is still perfectly usable and is more affordable than buying new. Not only this, but you are doing your part to reduce the number of trees being cut down.
This simple shed design features steel building siding that comes in wide sheets. These sheets allow you to cover large areas, are typically easy to put up, and are incredibly strong. You can buy new sheet metal or seek out one of the many used building material vendors in your area to help keep costs under control. Note the clear plexiglass roof and extra-large windows for additional light.
If you have a potting shed in mind, clear corrugated fiberglass offers you a less expensive option to glass. One reason I like this particular material is its durability. Branches can hit it, even the odd football or baseball and it won't break. At the same time, it lets plenty of light in to give your spring seedlings a chance to grow before planting season.
When your shed is too full of tools to park the mower inside, it's time to rethink your strategy. This shed features an extended roof on the left side that creates an outdoor storage area for things like your riding mower, your tiller, or your push mower. Not only does this type of roof add more much-needed storage space, but you can use this shady spot to work on your power tools. The long slope of the roof will easily shed rain, snow, and ice, helping to keep your equipment out of the elements all year long.
Simple shed designs like this one feature tongue and groove planks that are typically reserved for flooring or indoor paneling. The boards are designed to interlock along the long edges, making for an exceptionally sturdy structure. The best part is you can buy this type of lumber at your local discount hardware superstore in different lengths and a variety of different types of lumber.
Clear plexiglass has been used extensively throughout this shed to provide the level of natural lighting needed to create a private reading shed. Plexiglass is extremely durable and makes the perfect choice for this particular use. Not only does it let in plenty of light, but it will keep out the odd wayward softball. Although plexiglass can be a little on the expensive side, you should find the investment more than worthwhile when you see how long it lasts.
This lean-to shed features clapboard style siding which is not only easy to install but provides exceptional resistance to rain, wind, and snow. While you can build your shed from brand-new lumber, you could also opt to save money by building your shed from used lumber. The doors appear to be made from tongue and groove lumber but could also be made from pre-grooved plywood sheets that give the same appearance for far less money.
This interesting cube-shaped building is definitely not a shed. Not the way the builder used slats on three sides to provide plenty of ventilation for those evening meals in the great outdoors. Note that the entire back wall is solid to help keep the weather out, you could add outdoor curtains to help block any excess breezes and keep out the rains. What a great way to create your own outdoor family room!
This tiny shed looks a little more like an old English phone booth than a shed thanks to the glass door. But it definitely looks bigger on the inside. If you look closely, the walls of this shed appear to have been made from exterior grade doors. Not only can this save you a lot of money in supplies, it looks very cool and should be very strong. You can pick up used doors at any building salvage store or your local Habitat for Humanity Store.
This shed features plenty of glass to let the sun shine in. Note that it even has windows in the end gables for even more light. The use of both metal and clapboard siding gives this outdoor shed the look of a tiny home, which may help it blend into your backyard more easily. The double glass doors are perfect for letting in more cooling air or large items. This shed would make a great outdoor studio for the artist in the family.
This simple shed is framed using 2 x 4s and then covered in sheets of pre-grooved plywood to help keep costs under control. When all you are doing is building a tool storage shed, a design such as this is strong enough to handle snow and ice, yet light enough that you can move it around your yard. Note that the owner used the framework to install tool hangers and that he added a single window for light.
It's obvious that the designer who created simple shed designs like this one wanted to create an outdoor place to relax out of the sun and weather. The simple 2×4 framing and plywood sheathing add an interesting and low-cost touch. But, it’s the owner's use of a pair of sliding glass doors that make this shed so special. Here again, you could save money by sourcing many of the materials such as the doors from a local salvage dealer.
This “A” frame style shed features clapboard style roofing that will help shed rain, snow, and ice with equal ease. Instead of placing the shed flat on the ground where the wood frame could end up staying wet and rotting, the designer built a raised floor that would not only stay drier, but keep anything you store on it drier as well. When not being used for a summer camp out by your kids, it could double as a place to store your firewood.
Of all the different simple shed designs, this one uses simple stacked lumber siding in which each length of board is laid edge on to the one below it and nailed in place. While this design can be quite strong, unless you seal the gaps between each board with some form of caulking, it might let the rains come in. Once your little girl grows out of it, you can turn it into a dog house, or add plexiglass windows and a door to turn it into a storage shed.
It seems like everywhere I go, I end up running into amazingly cool shed ideas. The simple fact is, no matter where I go, I always have my eyes open looking for great ideas to share here.
There are so many simple shed designs out there, I may never stop adding to this collection of images. Try following my example and keeping your eyes open wherever your travels may take you. You just never know what you might find.
I hope you have enjoyed looking at these simple shed designs as much as I continue to collect more of them no matter where I go.