Handy Home Products - Phoenix Solar Shed Kit 10' x 8'

by Jim

Handy Home Products 10 Ft. X 8 Ft. Phoenix Solar Shed Kit with Floor.

I have had my solar shed for a couple months now and I am very happy with it. It's solid, very roomy, and goes together easily. One nice feature is that the rafters all have a 1/2" hole in their gussets for you to run a copper or plastic pipe through to hang plants (the pipe isn't included.) You can't really add this after it's built, so pick up eight feet of 1/2" pipe with the kit.

I only ran into a couple of small problems: The 2x6 short wall header was 1/2 inch shorter then it was supposed to be and one of the joist spacers was cut crooked. Luckily I had some spare wood pieces laying around to fix that. Also, the description doesn't mention that you need to order your own drip edges - you need 60 feet worth (6 pcs.) You need to install the drip edges before installing the windows so don't put off buying the drip edges until you get the rest of the roofing material like I did - order them along with the kit.

Some other tips: The end walls (the 10' sides) have their footer plates split in two pieces (page 11 of the instructions.) The join of these two pieces doesn't meet on a stud and thus is pretty flimsy until you get the wall nailed to the sill plate. Use a scrap piece of 1x4 or 2x4 to bridge the footer to help stiffen it up.

The instructions mention that glue is optional on the rafter gussets - in my option it should be mandatory. It will easily double the strength of those trusses. One tube of liquid nails or an 8 oz bottle of wood glue is all you need. If you want to glue all of the panelling to the studs for additional strength like I did, plan on getting a total of 5 tubes of liquid nail adhesive.

The roof trusses are only tied to the tall wall with two screws. If you live in a high wind area pick up three rafter ties (search for "H2.5 Hurricane Tie") for 30 cents each for extra peace of mind. Grab an extra 2 pieces per 4' extension you buy as well.

Lastly, do your elbow a favor and rent a nail gun and air compressor. Hammering close to 800 nails by hand is very tiring. A box of 500 2" galvanized ring shank nails, and 500 galvanized 3 1/2" nails is what you'll need.

This kit is delivered in a 4' x 8' x 2' bundle on a skid and weighs about 1000 lbs. I also ordered the 4' windowed extension with it and they strapped it to the top of the main kit. That added 4' x 8' x 6" of height and weighed about 200 lbs more.

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Sep 01, 2011
And some more tips
by: Anonymous

I relied on these tips.

In addition, I found that having the large windows made it challenging to do the roofing and securing the windows themselves. I applied roof felt before the drip edge was applied. When securing the windows, I found that doing one window at a time, and working from the open window framing next to it made it possible to set screws.

We painted the inside window framing white, too, before installing the windows, since it is easier then.

Also, I found that levelling the trim over the door, before the door was installed helped keep things looking square. I also painted the walls and trim pieces before I installed them, touching up the nails only afterwards.

As for the door handle and door stop, I waited to install the door stop at the time I set the door handle screw to make sure it lined up perfect.

There are a lot of gaps where air and bugs can enter, so I plan to take some "good stuff" and fill them up.

Some of the wood was twisted which made squaring difficult. I used screws in the framing to correct what I could.

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