The Bauhaus Barn
A number of people have been asking nicely to see the “innards” of the miniaturized modified A-frame ( gambrel A-frame – Jack Wades A-frame http://www.motherearthnews.com/Modern-Homesteading/1985-11-01/Build-An-Inexpensive-Home-In-The-Backyard.aspx). I knew it was going to be a time consuming “black hole” type of project but I decided to proceed with it any way because folks had ask nicely.
When I was a kid spending my summers at my grandparents cabin on the lake I would love breaking into my grandfathers stacks of old Popular Science and Popular Mechanics magazines that he kept in a box by the fireplace. These where from the golden age of the D.I.Y. magazines – 40s 50s and early sixties. I remember fondly the diagrams in these mags. They where usually cartoon”ish” in nature, with bold ink lines and bright watercolours. They usually showed an exploded view of some d.i.y. projects – had a 3D perspective and the outer shell of what was being built was usually removed to give you a good look of how things went together. I would study these drawings at night in my bunk with a flashlight. The next morning I would be off on my 3 speed with the banana seat and ape hanger bars, scouring the neighborhood for turpentine and tuna cans and some nuts and bolts to build myself a double burner alcohol stove. I still have that stove somewhere. I think that those old drawings are part of the reason why I was so captivated by the Bob Theis drawing of the Oikos cottage http://www.bobtheis.net/prototypes/oikoscottage.html . It is a great small home design and I hope that someone builds it someday but the drawing gives you the feeling for the homes brilliantly simple design and this one drawing contains the bulk of the building information – 20 minutes of studying it and you feel like you are ready to start pounding dirt into tires.
I had hoped to emulate these old drawings with the Bauhaus Barn. I put a month of work into it ( of prime summer weather) and I am glad I did. I will breaking this project post into a few bite size post pieces over the next couple weeks. There is a lot of stuff packed into this drawing. I actually skinned the the frame with 3/4 inch ply before I covered it with corrugated steel – and I have some cross bracing in the frame that is hidden – just because I wanted to see if it could be done. It sits on a 20′ x 20′ frame and it has an optional, small mud/mechanical room in the back. The window dormer/workstations where designed to visually enlarge the space and the split level loft areas give the house a feeling of a big play house – the stacks of old Popular Science and Popular Mechanics should be made a mandatory fixture in the Bauhaus Barn.