The Family Handyman - - FRONT PAGE - By Jeff Gor­ton

The large door open­ing on this shed gives you ex­pand­able in­door-out­door space. Just open the over­head door so your party can spread onto the pa­tio. Or roll your work­bench out­side dur­ing dusty jobs. And if stor­age is what you need, you can’t beat the easy-ac­cess con­ve­nience of a big door. Aside from the large beams and heavy roof panels that re­quire a bit of mus­cle to hoist up, the sim­ple de­sign and plain de­tail­ing on this shed make it rel­a­tively easy to build. Our on­line plans pro­vide all the in­for­ma­tion you need to re­pro­duce this shed ex­actly, or you can mod­ify the plans to suit your needs. For ex­am­ple, it would be easy to build the front wall to ac­com­mo­date win­dows in­stead of the garage door.

Tools, time and ma­te­ri­als

Most of the ma­te­ri­als for this shed are avail­able at home cen­ters. We spe­cial-or­dered the 2x12 beam ma­te­rial, the LP SmartSide panels and the outswing­ing doors for the stor­age locker.

As shown, this shed could cost you $16,000 or more. But there are ways to cut costs. Our bill for stan­dard ma­te­ri­als like lum­ber, sid­ing, doors and paint was less than $6,000. Hir­ing con­trac­tors to pro­vide and in­stall a con­crete slab ($5,000) and a metal roof ($3,000) drove up the bill. If you want to tackle these jobs your­self, get in­for­ma­tion by search­ing fam­i­ly­handy­ A glass garage door costs about $4,500.

Ex­pect to spend a week­end build­ing the walls, and then about 10 or 15 more days to fin­ish con­struc­tion. You’ll need strong helpers if you plan to pre­build the roof panels as we did, and to help lift the beams into place.

Check with your lo­cal build­ing depart­ment to see if a per­mit is re­quired to build this shed. Call 811 to lo­cate buried util­ity lines a few days be­fore you dig.

Pour the slab

We built our shed on a 20 x 20-ft. con­crete slab ( Fig­ure B on­line), but you could sub­sti­tute a wood foun­da­tion. If you want to pour your own slab, start by plac­ing forms for the 12 x 14-ft. foot­print and pour­ing the con­crete. Then if you want the con­crete to ex­tend be­yond the edges of the shed as ours does, build an­other set of forms and pour this sec­tion with a slight slope to the out­side for drainage. For more on pour­ing a slab, search for “con­crete” at fam­i­ly­handy­

Build the roof panels

To save time, we built the roof fram­ing in two 10 x 16-ft. sec­tions ( Fig­ures G and H on­line and Photo

1). The re­sult­ing panels re­quired a crew of six to hoist onto the roof

( Photo 9). If you build your roof like this, take ex­tra care to make

sure the two sec­tions are ex­actly the right size and per­fectly square be­fore you in­stall the ceil­ing ma­te­rial.

Start by cut­ting the rafters and top and bot­tom sub­fas­cias to length. Then mark the rafter lo­ca­tions on the sub­fas­cias us­ing

Fig­ure G (on­line) and Photo 1 as a guide. Nail the sub­fas­cias to the rafters and square the assem­bly. Rest the frames on 2x12s and tack them down to hold them square while you in­stall the ceil­ing panels. Af­ter as­sem­bling the two frames, con­nect them with tem­po­rary cleats to cre­ate the 20 x 16-ft. roof. Next, in­stall the grooved LP SmartSide panels that will be­come the shed ceil­ing ( Fig­ure H on­line). Start the panel installation along the cen­ter seam, care­fully align­ing the edge of the panels with the in­ter­sec­tion of the two frames. Then work out in both di­rec­tions.

WHY START WITH THE ROOF? A con­crete slab is the per­fect sur­face for as­sem­bling the roof panels. So we built the panels be­fore we framed the walls on the slab.

Do­ing it this way en­sures that the seam be­tween the two roof panels will align prop­erly when you con­nect the panels on the roof.

If you don’t have ac­cess to a crew, build the roof in a more con­ven­tional man­ner. To do that, get the beams up, then build the roof frame over them. Then cut the ceil­ing panels to fit around the beams.

Build the walls

Af­ter you as­sem­ble the roof panels and set them aside, it’s time to build and stand the walls. But first, snap chalk lines on the slab to lo­cate the out­side edge of the walls. Us­ing

Fig­ure B as a guide, mark the four cor­ners of the shed on the slab. Mea­sure di­ag­o­nally from op­po­site cor­ners. The two di­ag­o­nal mea­sure­ments should be equal. If not, ad­just the marks un­til they are. Then snap chalk lines.

Us­ing dimensions from Fig­ures

C, D and E (on­line), cut the wall plates to length and mark the stud lo­ca­tions on them. Cut the studs to length and nail the walls to­gether by driv­ing two 16d nails through the plates into each stud. Be­cause the sid­ing ma­te­rial must be held 1 in. above the slab, we added a treated bot­tom plate for bet­ter nail­ing sup­port at the bot­tom of the sid­ing panels. Add this plate af­ter you build the walls.

Build and stand the front and back walls, us­ing tem­po­rary braces to hold them up. Then build and stand the two side walls ( Photo 2).

Nail the cor­ners to­gether. Then line up the out­side edges of the walls with the chalk lines and drill holes for an­chor bolts.

Check that the top plates of the walls are straight and level. If they’re not, drive plas­tic or treated lum­ber shims un­der the plates to cor­rect for ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties in the slab be­fore you tighten the nuts on the an­chor bolts. Fi­nally, use a long level to plumb the cor­ners and a tem­po­rary di­ag­o­nal 2x4 to hold them plumb un­til af­ter the sid­ing panels are in­stalled ( Photo 3).

As­sem­ble the beams

The 2x12s for your beams will most likely be slightly longer than 20 ft., al­low­ing you to cut the ends

per­fectly square. Use a fram­ing square to mark the cuts, and cut all nine 2x12s to ex­actly 20 ft. long. You’ll in­stall the front and back beams first, and use them as a ref­er­ence for align­ing the cen­ter beam. The front and back beams over­hang the top plate 1-1/2 in. to pro­vide a nice re­veal af­ter the sid­ing and trim are in­stalled ( Fig­ure F on­line).

To help hold the beams in the right spot while we in­stalled them, we nailed tem­po­rary beam braces to 2x4 spac­ers at the cor­ners and mid­dle of the front and back walls (vis­i­ble in Photo 4). To avoid hav­ing to hoist a heavy beam into place, we lifted the 2x12s into place one at a time and nailed them to­gether while they were in their fi­nal po­si­tion.

Nail the three 2x12s to­gether, mak­ing sure to keep the edges aligned. Mark the as­sem­bled beams 5 ft. from the end on the side with the large over­hang. Then press the as­sem­bled beams against the beam braces, line up the 5-ft. mark with the out­side edge of the wall, and se­cure the beams by driv­ing 4-in. struc­tural screws through the top plate into the beams.

The next step is to de­ter­mine the height of the cen­ter beam. Photo 5 shows the setup and how to

mea­sure for the triple 2x4 post that sup­ports the cen­ter beam.

Here’s an­other tip: Nail a 10-ft. 2x4 ver­ti­cally to the top and bot­tom plates of the end walls, align­ing one edge with the down­hill side of the triple stud (beam post). This tem­po­rary 2x4 will sup­port the cen­ter beam as you tip it up into po­si­tion, and pro­vide a guide for po­si­tion­ing the short triple beam post (vis­i­ble in Photo

6). Build the cen­ter beam and mark as you did for the front and back beams. Lift it onto the posts and at­tach it ( Photo 6).

Com­plete the side wall

Cut 12-de­gree bevels on the ends of the an­gled top plates, fit­ting them be­tween the beams and lined up with the tem­po­rary 2x4. An­chor the ends of the plates. Then mark the stud po­si­tions. Mea­sure for the studs, cut them to length with a 12-de­gree bevel on one end and nail them into place

( Photo 7).

In­stall the sid­ing and band

Cut the sid­ing for the lower wall sec­tions to 83 in. long. Then cut a panel 2 ft. wide and use this half sheet to start the sid­ing on the end wall ( Fig­ure J on­line). Use the other half of the sheet to fin­ish the same wall. Rest the sheets on 1-in. blocks while you nail them to the studs. Use 2-in. hot-dipped gal­va­nized sid­ing nails to in­stall the sid­ing and trim. Make sure the top edge of each sheet is aligned 1/8 in. below the top plates to al­low room for the drip cap flash­ing be­tween the beam and the sid­ing ( Fig­ure L on­line).

When you’ve com­pleted the sid­ing on the lower part of the walls, nail the 1-1/2-in. metal drip cap flash­ing to the studs to cover the top edge of the sid­ing. Then screw the 2x12 bands to the studs ( Photo 8) and cover the top with an­other piece of metal drip cap ( Fig­ure L on­line). Fi­nally, cut and in­stall the sid­ing that goes above the 2x12 band.

Add cor­ner boards and bat­tens

The cor­ner boards are 1 in. thick. One is 4-1/2 in. wide and the other is 3-1/2 in. wide. When nailed to­gether, they form a cor­ner that’s 4-1/2 in. wide on both faces. The 4-1/2-in. width aligns with the beams to sim­u­late cor­ner posts. Cut the parts for the cor­ners and nail them to­gether. Af­ter you seal all the cut ends with paint, nail on the cor­ners ( Photo 12). Then cut bat­tens, seal the ends and nail them on, cen­ter­ing them over the studs. The wall fram­ing was planned so that the 1x2 bat­tens would look nice when aligned over the studs. See Fig­ure K on­line for trim place­ment.

Be­cause the LP SmartSide trim must be held 1 in. above the con­crete, we used 1x6 boards for the garage door­jambs to avoid the gap at the bot­tom. If you’ve fol­lowed the plan care­fully, you should be able to nail the top garage door­jamb di­rectly to the wall fram­ing, leav­ing 1/4 in. ex­posed below the 2x12 band.

Ours didn’t work out per­fectly, so we shimmed the top jamb down about 1/4 in. to cre­ate the re­veal.

We also ripped the 1x6 to 4-7/16 in. so the in­te­rior edge would be flush with the in­te­rior pan­el­ing. Nail on the top jamb, then add the sides. Keep the bot­tom ends of the side jambs about 1/4 in. above the slab to pre­vent wa­ter from soak­ing into them. Fin­ish the garage door open­ing with trim boards on each side.

Build the back stor­age area

The stor­age area on the back of the shed is op­tional, but the open sec­tions are a great place to store fire­wood, and the locker is per­fect for lawn equip­ment and tools. Given that the con­crete slab may be slop­ing in this area, it’s eas­ier to build these walls in place than to build them and then fit them in.

Start by mark­ing the po­si­tion of the treated bot­tom plates and se­cur­ing them to the slab with con­crete an­chors. Use Fig­ures C and

M on­line as a guide. Plumb up from these plates to lo­cate the top plates. Cut the an­gled top plates with 12-de­gree bevels on the ends and nail them to the ceil­ing. Then cut studs to fit and nail them in. Fi­nally, cover the sides with sid­ing ma­te­rial ( Photo 13). Cap the ends of the two out­side walls with a 5-1/2-in.-wide trim board. Wait un­til af­ter you’ve in­stalled the dou­ble doors to in­stall the trim over the cen­ter walls.

In­stall the doors

The pre­hung ex­te­rior doors for the side and back of the shed must be in­stalled be­fore you can add the ex­te­rior trim pieces on the top and sides of the doors. Go to fam­i­ly­handy­ and search for “door installation” to find de­tailed in­struc­tions. Af­ter you shim the frames and se­cure the door frames to the fram­ing with screws, cut the trim to fit on the top and sides.

Fin­ish­ing up

You can see from the pho­tos that we painted the ceil­ing panels, beams and wide band be­fore in­stalling them. Then we painted the sid­ing panels be­fore in­stalling the cor­ners and bat­tens. If you do

the same, you’ll have very lit­tle paint­ing left to do af­ter con­struc­tion is done. We fin­ished up by caulk­ing the spaces be­tween trim boards and touch­ing up scuffs and caulked ar­eas with match­ing paint.

We fin­ished the in­te­rior of the shed with shiplap boards. You’ll get a neater job if you fin­ish the in­te­rior be­fore the garage door is in­stalled. Also, if you want out­lets or wall lights in the shed, in­stall the wiring be­fore you fin­ish the walls.

Roof frame Di­ag­o­nal mea­sure­ment1. BUILD THE ROOFNail the sub­fas­cias to the rafters. Mea­sure di­ag­o­nally from op­po­site cor­ners to square the frame. Tack the cor­ners to the 2x12 to hold the frame square. Build and square the sec­ond roof frame.

Tem­po­rary brace 4' level3. PLUMB AND BRACE THE COR­NERSHold a long level against the cor­ner and push or pull the wall un­til the cor­ner is per­fectly plumb. Screw a di­ag­o­nal brace to the in­side of the wall to hold it plumb. Re­peat this on all four walls.

Front wall Side wall2. BUILD AND STAND THE WALLSStand and brace the front wall. Then build the side walls and stand them up. Nail the cor­ners to­gether. Then an­chor the walls with con­crete an­chors, mak­ing sure to keep the bot­tom plates aligned with the chalk line.

Tem­po­rary align­ment guide Scrap of 2x12 Mea­sure short post height 2x4 on edge 5. MEA­SURE FOR THE BEAM POST Choose a straight 2x4 and at­tach it on edge to the front and back beams. Hold a scrap of the 2x12 ma­te­rial against this 2x4 and mea­sure from the top plate to the bot­tom of the 2x12 scrap to de­ter­mine the height of the cen­ter post.

2x12 beam Beam brace4. AS­SEM­BLE THE BEAMSScrew tem­po­rary sup­port blocks to 2x4 spac­ers. Rest the first 2x12 against the sup­ports, mak­ing sure it over­hangs 5 ft. Add the next 2x12 and nail it to the first one. Com­plete the beam by nail­ing the third 2x12 to the first two.

Top plate 7. COM­PLETE THE WALL FRAM­ING Nail the short studs to the plates to com­plete the fram­ing on the up­per part of the side walls.

2x12 cen­ter beam Tem­po­rary align­ment guide Triple 2x4 postAn­gled screw6. AN­CHOR THE CEN­TER BEAMAf­ter cut­ting and in­stalling the short, triple 2x4 posts on each end, build the cen­ter beam in place. Then screw through the posts into the beam to hold it in place.

Roof frame with ceil­ing9. HOIST THE ROOF PANELSRound up some strong friends to help lift the roof frame. Tip a frame up and lean it against the back wall. Lift the bot­tom and push the frame onto the roof. Press with 2x4s to po­si­tion the frame. When both frames are in place, ad­just them un­til they’re even with the beams and the front over­hang is 18 in.

2x12 Band Flash­ing8. ADD THE BANDThe first step is to nail a 1-1/2-in. metal drip cap flash­ing along the top edge of the sid­ing. Then nail the 2x12 band to the studs, keep­ing it aligned with the back beam.

Roof sheath­ing Stag­ger seams11. IN­STALL THE ROOF SHEATH­INGStart­ing with a 6-ft. sheet on one end, nail the sheath­ing to the rafters. Leave a 1/8-in. space be­tween the sheets to al­low for ex­pan­sion. Start the sec­ond row of sheath­ing with a 2-ft. cut­off from the first row.

6" screw into beam Beam 10. AN­CHOR THE ROOF Drive 8-in. struc­tural screws down through the 2x4 rafters into the beams. Place screws 32 in. apart along each beam.

1x2 bat­ten As­sem­bled cor­ner12. ADD COR­NERS AND TRIMCut the cor­ner boards to length and nail them to­gether. Nail the cor­ners to the shed. Cut the bat­tens, cen­ter them over the studs and nail them on. Nail a 1x6 fas­cia to the roof frame.

Sid­ing 2x4 frame 13. BUILD THE STOR­AGE LOCKER An­chor the treated plates to the con­crete. Then plumb up to lo­cate the top plates. Fill in the studs and cut the sid­ing panels to fit.

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