Thursday, August 15, 2013

Overview of How I Built Them

Overview of How I Built my Survival Shelters and Pods (aka "Dignity Roller Pods"):                                                                                                          
- I start with sheets of  4' X 8'  OSB pressed wood, like plywood but cheaper. As of August 2013, Home Depot sells them for $10.55 a sheet. 
- I buy 2"X 4"s and with my table saw cut them length wise to make them 2"X 2"s. Makes the pods lighter and can build more pods cheaper. 

- I buy 10" wheels and tires from Harbor Freight Tools here in Orem, Utah (retail: $9.95, on sale: $3.99.) You need 2 per pod. They are rated at 300 lbs. each tire. 
- Also 5" swivel wheels, rated 300 lbs., one or two (your choice) for the front of the pod.  

- The axel is 5/8" round steel rod from Metal Mart in Lehi, Utah. I buy a 20' bar for about $35 (makes 4  axel's).

- Also at Metal Mart I buy 6' long,  2" wide steel or aluminum hinges, which I cut with my hack saw to 3" and drill the holes in the hinges for my doors (cost: $10 - $13). 

- For the wood on the sides of the pod that holds the two ends together, I use drywall  screws 2" long to hold my 2" X 2"  side frames, and 3 " wood screws to hold the bottom frame together, and some to hold the OSB to the floor, and finish with 1-1/2 " shingle nails down through the OSB. (I like the big heads of the shingle nails.)

- I use a screw in eye bolt on the front of the pod to put a bolt and nut with washers through connected to my my 3/4" conduit pull handle, which I weld across it a 3/4 conduit about 8" long for the handle.

- I use 1/8" plexiglass for my windows, in which I cut a round 9" DI hole in the Coroplast cover side. (Note: Coroplast is a brand name of corrugated plastic.) And from the inside I put a 12" X 12" piece of plexiglass, held with 3/4" long small bolts and nut and washers. 
- I seal the windows inside with Silicon chalk. I use hinges for a small shelf inside the pod held up with chain or ropes (from a top 2" X 2") on one of the sides to a 2" X 2" in the middle about 19" high.  

- On the top I use a white PVC Tee for drains that is 4" DI (at Home Depot today for $3.18). That is a vent. 
- I cut a hole in the top, and silicon it in the top and bottom.
- I also buy a kerosene lantern (from Walmart) that I hang up very close to vent it (cost: $6.99).

- I use 1/2" or 3/4" white polystyrene flexible insulation (4' X 8' sheet) that I bend inside the round top of the pod and down the sides (cut to fit) for $10.76.  
- I use 1" solid insulation on the bottom under the floor between the frame 2" X 2", aluminum foil side down ($12 - $19? at Home Depot). 

- I carpet the floor with good used carpet or buy cheap new carpet from Home Depot. 
- I buy an exterior paint for the ends, and underneath on the 2" X 2" frame cross members ($23 ?) 

- The Coroplast I get in Salt Lake City from a plastic company. It is used by sign companies to make lawn signs for elections. (Look online to see where some is sold close to you.) In Utah, a 4' X 8' sheet costs about $15, and comes in many colors. (Note: DO NOT BUY THE CLEAR. I tried it for a solar heat on the front top of the pods, and in 6 to 8 months the sun turned it brittle and it broke up. I had to replace it with a colored piece of Coroplast.)
- I use drywall screws 1-1/2" and washers or a strip for thin wood or metal to put on my Coroplast roof, down the bottom frame and across the ends. Reason being, if I have to replace a piece of Coroplast, I use my battery drill screw driver to remove the screws and replace the Coroplast sheet. I over lap the Coroplast about 3" and use a silicon chalk between the sheets to seal from wind and water.  (Coroplast is like plastic cardboard with air in between, so is a good insulator but still cuts easy with a razor knife. 

- All the Dignity Roller Pods are built the same. Choose your size:
- 5' long X 36" (or 40" or 48") wide.  
- For 5' Long  6' long,  8' long, or 10' long, cut 3" off your wood floor, shorter than the length to allow for the 3"overlap of the Coroplast. 
- How high depends on how wide you make your pod. 
- The Coroplast is 8' long and is the way it goes over your pod, so at 40" wide you will only be about 35" high. 
- You cut your end pieces to whatever height you want your pod to be, then you add a 3" or 6" or 9" or 12' or 24" (or other height ) side board the length that you are making your pod (5', 6', 7', 8', 10', etc.). Your choice. 
- I like the 7' 9" long  X 48" floor because that is the size of a piece of the bottom  O S B  wood .
- Cut 3" or 4" or 5" off the end of the floor to allow for the Coroplast overlap. Add two 12" high side boards cut to 7' 9" long, and you should have a 48" high X 48" wide X 7' 9" pod. 

- You will see in the pictures that I have a conduit or PVC  U frame in the front of the pods that can be lowered by removing the top bolt for traveling, if you want. That is the base for a privacy shelter for your 5 gallon bucket port-a-potty, and for dressing, etc. 
- I use cheap Harbor Fright Tool tarps 9' X 7' and the smaller ones for the top. Tie the tarp to the frame and leave a side that can open to get in and out.

Have fun and help the Homeless.                                           
Gary  P. 

1 comment:

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