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-   -   Shed to Eco-Friendly Brewhaus Conversion (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/shed-eco-friendly-brewhaus-conversion-106330/)

NewBrew09 03-02-2009 02:25 AM

Shed to Eco-Friendly Brewhaus Conversion
It has finally been approved by SWMBO to convert our 14'X14' shed that is mostly used for junk storage to an all weather brewhaus. I plan on building a walk in cooler, have a brewing area and a bar area in it. But here is the best part: I am going to use as much recycled materials as possible in the construction. I have an idea for the flooring to reuse pallet planks over plywood to make an interesting wood floor. The roof will be replaced with scrap plywood and shingles ( i have a buddy in the construction biz ) the only new materials I will be using will be the insulation and electrical wiring. I also have plans in the future for it to become energy dependent by installing wind and solar power units to harvest the electricity.

The walk in chiller will take up approximately half of the floorspace in the building and in the bar area, i plan on having 4 taps feeding directly thru the wall. I already have a small commercial refrigeration unit ready to be installed once the rest of the shed has been prepped. There will be a storage space above the cooler for storage of brewing materials and such.

What does everyone think? I am open to suggestions, advise and encouragement on this project. Also, once it is complete, I will throw a party for forum members and we have have a few homebrews!

slnies 03-02-2009 02:29 AM

Sounds like a good set up. I want one.

davefj40 03-02-2009 11:03 AM

sounds good to me and you don't seem that far away :)

HarvInSTL 03-02-2009 01:56 PM

This might help you.

ReStore - Habitat for Humanity, Montgomery County, MD

llazy_llama 03-02-2009 02:19 PM


Originally Posted by NewBrew09 (Post 1168191)
What does everyone think?

Personally, I think you are 10 kinds of awesome. Let's get some pics of the process and the finished product! :mug:


bendavanza 03-02-2009 03:06 PM

Have you ever tried to disassemble a pallet? They are not easy. I think they are oak, too. I love the idea of a post consumer recycled building. My friend built his cabin out of mostly recycled scrap lumber from construction sites. All the wall framing was built with 2x6's that were used for bracing ect. It seems people are too lazy to pull out nails. My brew stand build is 95% recycled materials, reusing/ repurposing what I could find in bulk trash around my neighborhood.

NewBrew09 03-02-2009 04:01 PM

Thanks for all the enthusiastic comments guys! Yes, I have tried to disassemble pallets before, and for me, I find it more tedious than difficult. It takes time and patience. Most pallets are made from Oak and Pine. I will not be selective in the wood. I will disassemble, sand, and finish all useable planks from them. Any left over scraps will be used for my firepit for the late night get togethers.

There is an old concrete dog run that is next to the shed as well and I plan on tearing down the fencing and using the concrete pad as a patio/outdoors brewing area. Maybe in the future, I will build it up to be its own brew/fermentation/bottling building. Once again, I will use recycled materials.

I am in Detroit, MI this week, but when I get back, I will post the pics of the shed as it stands now. It will take some work, but once I get the materials together, I anticipate that it will take a week or 2 of construction before I am ready to move everything in. If anyone in Maryland has anything to donate, (time, skills, materials, etc...) it would be greatly appreciated. If we few people in the MD/PA/DC/VA area are interested in helping with the project, please PM me and I can set up a build/brew day for sometime this spring.

I am really excited for this project and plan on getting started once I get back home by cleaning out all the junk that is stored in it. I have some items in there I would prefer to give away than just take to the dump.

Keep all the postive comments coming, it will drive me to complete this project as soon as possible.

*update on materials* I found a gentleman who will sell me 30 pallets for $2 each. I will pursue this route of Craigslist doesnt turn up anyone giving them away for free.

TwoHeadsBrewing 03-02-2009 04:10 PM

If you can buy or borrow a planer that would help quite a bit with the wood fromt the palets. Some of that wood has been scuffed, gouged, or maybe even rough-sawn to begin with. Running through a planer at about 1/2-5/8" would probably be perfect for flooring. It would create a uniform height floor and reduce the amount of sanding.

Can't wait to see pics!

NewBrew09 03-02-2009 04:47 PM

I am not gonna lie, the shed right now is UGLY. The roof has rotted and definately needs to be replaced, and the floor has structural beams that have collapsed and will need to be replaced. The shed is built on a hillside, and is at ground level in the front and at the backside, it sits about 18 inches off the ground. I plan on ripping up the old plywood and salvaging what I can. I have some lumber laying around from an old treehouse project I was doing for the kids, but they lost interest, so I tore the treehouse down. So I will use the 4x4's from that to replace the floor beams. I will also be putting plywood on the bottom of the shed, so I can put insulation and a vapor barrier in the floor, with then a layer of plywood on top, then capped off with the flooring from the pallets. Then I will move on to the walls and finally the roof. I was looking at the roof yesterday and found that the tree next to the shed has a limb that has been rubbing on the roof for quite some time and wore a hole in the top, so that limb needs to be trimmed back and the roof replaced.

So right now, the order of work will be:

1) Clean out the shed and give away/trash the items inside.
2) Rip out old floor, salvage materials that I can.
3) Replace damaged/rotted structural floor beams.
4) Apply plywood to underside of floor structure.
5) Insulate floor structure, apply plywood to topside of floor.
6) Demo the roofing, inspect for damage.
7) Replace damaged wood beams in roof structure, lay new/salvaged plywood on roof.
8) Finish shingles on roof.
9) Remove external paneling on walls, inspect for damage.
10) Replace external paneling, begin insulation internally.
11) Finish insulation, apply paneling to internal walls.
12) Build wall for walk in cooler, insulate and complete.
13) Install refridgeration unit.

Thats all I have for now, and I imagine that the order of work will change once i get into the process. I will be posting pics next saturday at the earliest as I will be out of town until then.

PhlyanPan 03-02-2009 06:10 PM


Originally Posted by TwoHeadsBrewing (Post 1169096)
If you can buy or borrow a planer that would help quite a bit with the wood fromt the palets. Some of that wood has been scuffed, gouged, or maybe even rough-sawn to begin with. Running through a planer at about 1/2-5/8" would probably be perfect for flooring. It would create a uniform height floor and reduce the amount of sanding.

Can't wait to see pics!

I would be really worried about tearing up blades putting pallet wood through it. It's inevitable you'll miss a staple or nail once in a while and whack it with the planer.

Do you have a saw mill near by? Ever looked at slab wood? It's not exactly recycled but sometimes it can be had for very cheap (or even free) and I think it looks really neat. Maybe not for flooring because it can be pretty uneven, but for siding or walls it can be really cool.

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