|Wood Strips Added for Strength|
This strengthens each edge, and still provides support for the future "floor" of the module above. I glued at both ends, as well as to the Foam Core along the bottom edge, thus supporting each joint from both sides and from the bottom. I chose to add full length center supports and then secondary supports to add further strength, similar to a real life build. I know next to nothing about framing a house, but felt that this would provide the strength necessary. It proved to be very satisfactory.
At this point I would like to recommend a couple of things about the wood strips.
The first is to use basswood, rather than balsa wood if you buy your wood strips. I felt that the balsa was just too soft to act as a strong support. I did use a few balsa wood strips early in my building, and I've not felt that the final roombox is as strong.
The second is DON'T buy them! Er...I guess I should qualify that. Don't buy them if you have a table saw and know how to operate it safely. You can cut those same wood strips for a fraction of the cost. I used a 1/8 inch thick hickory board bought at Lowe's in 36" lengths, which would be one of the standard lengths of the craft store offered basswood. Using the table saw and a push stick, I was able to cut the board into strips nearly identical to the basswood strips.
|Comparison of craft store basswood (right) and home cut hickory sticks (left)|
Before applying the hickory sticks to the future ceiling, know what your general floor plan is for both the roombox you are building AND the one above, if you are building a staircase, as I have in my entry. You will need to cut the opening for the stairwell before applying the sticks, if you do not, you will have an opportunity to do some additional learning...by rebuilding the ceiling! I've included an example of what I am referring to above. If I did not cut the stairwell opening, I would have added sticks across the future open area. So "know where you go". Always plan ahead..and avoid some of the rebuilding I have had to do!!!
Several of the roomboxes I built also had window boxes attached.
I treated all sides the same, wood supports on each wall, under the floor and over the ceiling.
Now comes the more interesting part.
I wanted my final house to fit together like a glove, to hold itself together once assembled. So I created channels on the "inside" walls of each box. These help align, support, and keep together the final roomboxes.
|The grid in between modules within which channels from the next box fit in to|
|The three modules making up the ground floor fit together|