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Building a fish house.....need help!


beretta

Question

My buddy and I are thinking about building a fish house over christmas vacation. Thinking about 8' x 12' with runners. Mainly for use on Lake Bemidji. Does anyone have any plans or reccomendations. Wood stove or propane furnace? Were kinda going into this blind and of course being college students, the funding is limited....Thanks for any help you can give us.

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just finishing building our 8x12. Alot of work and cash. 90% steel and light as heck. But twice as expensive as we had estimated. Be ready for a price shock. Cost us about 1200 hundred, and we got the tires, axle, siding and gas lights and 60# tank for free.

Good luck

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I can't tell you exactly what to do. You need to make a house that is best for you. All I say is don't put yourself in a corner that you can't get out of. Take time to decide where you want the door. I think the heater should be exactly oppsite of the door. I like the idea of a wood stove but in the long run you may find it too much work and wind up going with propane anyway. However, if money is an issue, (which it always is), use what is the cheapest and what is available. Make sure you can move it easily. Think about what you are going to do in a couple of years. Don't just assume that you will want keep it on the same lake until you 50. Build so you can easily add wheels. Use plenty if insulation. I know you can buy plans for a small fee. I think if you like the plans, buy it. It can save you problems in the future. I have never built one my self. I wanted to and I made plans, crunched numbers and determined that the best thing for me was to buy a manufactured shell and add to it my self. I could not have been happier with the money I spent for what I got. I got a great value and I got a lot of use out of my you house even when it is off the Ice. Good Luck!

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Menards has a nice, small two man pop up for less than $150. I know it's not the palace you envision but it may be an alternative when you consider spending the savings on beer and bait. My home made shack has been it the attic of my garage since I built it in 1990. Portable gets used. Good fishing!

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Thanks for the help. I will post pics as it comes along. Does anyone have any suggestions for siding materials?

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I built a 6.5'x16' last year and I used steel pole barn siding from Menards. It comes in long lengths and is 3' wide so it goes on fast. I used this for the roof and siding. For the corners I trimmed it with 1" green treated boards and used stormblaster weather caulk to seal it up. I'd highly suggest using the pink board foam for all insulating; walls, floor and ceiling. It doesn't absorb water like the cotton candy stuff does. I had a house with the rolled insulation and it was gutted because water got in and the mold spread like wildfire. One other suggestion, use luan instead of particle board paneling. With a coat of spar outdoor polyurethane the luan seems to resist moisture better. One last thing (for real this time) spend the money for a good direct vent furnace. It will keep the house dry and it will give you peace of mind.

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Quote:

being college students, the funding is limited....


On a budget....been there.

I would attempt to obtain materials ASAP. The more time you have to look, the cheaper you should be able to get stuff. Contact your relatives and see what they have laying around.

Check Menards for a "budget pile" of plywood. I got alot of material for my fish house from this pile. If your Menards has a similar pile, you may be able to come up with floor and roof sheeting material as well as bunk boards.

Rip 2x4's for framing. Cheaper and likely straighter than 2x2's

Check with siding contractors for any tear offs they may be doing. May be able to get some vinyl siding for free.

Insulation - this will cost you. You could always go cheap and use the white bead board instead of the pink although not recommended. (You don't have to finish the interior and you could always replace the bead board at a later date.)

Old mobile homes can be stripped to obtain a door and frame in addition to various other things such as hinges for hole covers, wiring, etc.

Lastly, if you're fortunate, do you know of anyone with a trashed out travel trailer or RV? They have everything you need to build a good fish house.

Good luck,

Pete

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I'm just finishing up my 8x12, will be done this weekend. it ended up costing about $1500... including 1 nice front door, and window. I got all roofing material for free, insulation for free and carpet for free... it would've costed quite abit more obviously if it wasn't for the free stuff. a good chunk of the $$ was in the green treated plywood for the walls.. I would have used regular plywood but it's too cold now to paint or stain it and I didn't want to have to replace it right away next year.

Good luck on the project, I had fun building mine! Can't wait to get on the ice now grin.gif

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Thanks for the tips and suggestions guys. I have obtained a door and some windows for free. I think my room mate has some 2x4s at home that we can rip into 2x2s. So I figure my biggest expense is going to be the ply wood for the floor and the siding. Any tips for light weight fairly inexpensive siding?

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I ended up buying 1/4 luan its cheap and if you paint it, its just as good as any treated plywood, and a plus is it is really really light.

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Berretta, Did you ever get a reply on your question regarding light, inexpensive siding? Earlier in the post, a suggestion was made to use exterior grade lauan plywood with a polyurethane coating. I am building a small 8' x 4' hardsided house and am trying to keep it as light as possible. The lauan is certainly light, but it doesn't seem to be something that would hold up to the elements. Perhaps with a good coat of polyurethane or exterior paint it would work. Is there anybody that used 1/4" Lauan as an ice house exterior and can attest to its durability? In that same vein, what about the roof? Does the exterior lauan on the roof need to be covered with shingles or some kind of lightweight impervious covering? Thanks

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