Julia Log Cabin

We have received a customer review from Mr P of their experience with installing their Julia Log Cabin. Thank you for sending this in!  We love how the bar turned out- It’s a great idea!


Mr P writes as follows: 

Back in February I purchased a Log Cabin from Tuin.

Several months later I have completed the project, turning it into a bar and brewery. Very pleased with it and your customer support and thought I would share some pictures with you!

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We love the bar and brewery Mr P! Thank you for sending in your images, we hope the brewing turns out well!

Other customer experiences, build articles and ideas can be found at: Pictorial Tuin Reviews.

Shepherd Hut Review

One of our customers, James from East Sussex, has been very generous in sending us his review of the Shepherd Hut Gypsy styled caravan and his process of installing them from start to finish- with plenty of pictures!


James writes as follows: 

I ordered two Shepherd’s Huts before Christmas to take advantage of the generous discount. They were delivered in the first week in January. The delivery driver was superb and, though it was difficult and time-consuming, he managed to get both into one of our barns.

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We debated where to undertake construction and in the end decided that it would be best right by the house, which involved some nice exercise to stroll up and down the drive when stuff was needed.

The kits were extremely well packed and there was no need to use additional tarpaulin or covering. They have sat there in the barn until today when I opened the first one. I used my car to haul the heavy metal chassis and wheels, nuts, bolts and other hardware up to the build area. There is one thing we did: I read a review about the axle being tube which broke when the hut was moved a short distance. We decided to get a blacksmith to beef up that component, just in case, so the tube was cut off and solid steel bar was welded in its place for each axle.

Axle Tube Modifications

Since all the metal work was on top of the kit, I kind of thought that the contents of the delivery would be packed in the order you need them. But that isn’t the case and it’s not a problem. So, after looking at the drawings and instructions and much head scratching, we opened up the delivery and had another round of head scratching.

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Day 1:

Our aim for today – I am building this with my friend who is a great deal more handy and adept than I am – was to get the base done. We started at 10.00am and, unusually for me, we carefully studied the manual/building plans and decided we would just go at it a page at a time. So, first order of business was to build the chassis. The metal bit was easy and that was the starting point and first job to do. All we had to do was lay out the metal work roughly where we wanted to build the hut.

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It was at this point that we realised we would need various lengths of timber from the kit and, when I opened it, I noticed that a lot of them were right down the bottom of the pallet! So, we would have to take everything off the pallet and stack it in vertical piles. That took a little while as we looked at various components and discussed them and where they would fit into the overall thing. I was very surprised to see that the panels that had windows actually had the glass in! OK, if you want to double glaze your hut you need to change that but it says something for the quality of the packaging and the way things are shipped that all the glass is in first class condition – not a scratch or crack anywhere on it.

Looking at the build instructions, and the separate parts list, the various lengths of timber, some of which look the same length, I had hoped would be numbered to correspond with their number in the parts list. They aren’t. It’s not a problem – but you just need to be careful to make sure you use a tape measure to check the sizes to correctly identify the various components.

For instance, you might just be able to make out below that to join the two chassis units, you need to make up a joist which uses one 2, one 2a and a 2b. 2a and 2b are not dissimilar in size but if you make that mistake – we did – you end up with a joist that is either too short by a few inches or too long by the same amount.

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The first task that involves wood is to make two items that bolt onto the metal work. We did these on the ground and then fitted them.

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A point on the metal chassis. We did a bit of head scratching because what we had in front of us didn’t match the drawing. It was obvious that this assembly had been beefed up with two additional bolts but that isn’t reflected in the drawing. Sill, you would want to be fairly uptight to worry about it and I am certain that the additional metal and bolts are an improvement.

Metal Chassis Closeup

Getting on with the frame, we built the first two long joists (the 2 + 2a + 2b) that bolt to the metal frames on the ground. Then it was just a case of positioning them accurately, drilling holes and bolting to the metal. This fixes the length of the unit – and it’s big!

From here, you need to assemble the rest of the joists – another five. As mentioned, each one is made of three pieces of different length timber. There was a whole lot of head scratching trying to get the right ones together. Basically, we put all the possible pieces on the part-built base, which is a great work bench, and then worked out what went with what. You just need to take your time and things click into place.

Underlining the point that the Shepherd Hut base is a very handy workbench at exactly the right height, in the image you can see James making up one of the three-component joists.

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The Tuin hut is a quality item and as we were working we were having some thoughts about making sure it lasts. The base we are working on, the underside won’t show, unless someone crawls underneath. The wood is untreated and, as it goes through its life, while rain can’t get under there, dew and damp, over time, could. So we decided that we would not fix any of the joists for the moment. That’s because I am going out tomorrow to get some really good wood preservative for everything we have made so far before it is fixed – it’s a lot easier brushing on preservative when I can turn the joist over to get all sides, rather than crawling around under the base. Also, I am going to apply a coat of preservative to the underside of the floorboards – the ones that will be open to mist and moisture from beneath. So this is as far as we got on Day 1 – all the joists are ready to be screwed down but they will get a coat of preservative before that happens.

In terms of time, what you see above is not a day’s work – it took four hours work for two guys from start to finish, and that included a fair bit of time at the beginning getting familiar with the kit, instructions, components and how to read the drawings and specs, looking at parts and figuring things out. Most of all, we want to enjoy this build so we are not rushed. Tomorrow is preserving day. At this stage we are delighted with everything and though we have had the offer of whatever support and advice from Richard at Tuin, we haven’t felt the need to avail ourselves of it.

Day 2: 

Day 2 is a misnomer. On Day 2, as mentioned above, I treated everything with a preservative/sealant against moisture and that included the floor joists and all the underside of all the floorboards. I stacked the made-up joists on the axles and used the hut base to paint on the preservative to the floorboards and then I left them there and covered the lot with the tarpaulin.

We cleared the deck and positioned the five joists. It was at this stage that we discovered a length discrepancy in two of them – one was a bit short while the other was a few inches too long. Clearly we had made a mistake and we figured out we had used the wrong three components, as indeed we had. It didn’t take long to figure out where we made the mistake and we switched over components. However, it underlines that you need to take your time and make sure you identify all the components and put a pencil mark on them so that in the heat of constructing things, you don’t mistake similar sized and shaped lengths.

Things are still a bit slow at this stage, as compared with later but you need to just take your time. The joists have to be positioned accurately and we did that and clamped them in position while we screwed on the metal brackets. There’s 20 of them so, even with two of us, it still took time. I guess, from unwrapping things, getting the joists positioned and putting the brackets in – with a stop for a bacon sarnie and a tea – it took us nearly three hours to get everything ready. After that, things began to speed up in terms of seeing real change and progress. I think it only took us about half an hour or so to screw the floorboards to the joists and suddenly we had a platform and we could look at putting up the wall panels.

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We decided to offset the side windows, looking over the timestamps of the images I was able to work out that it took just a few minutes over one hour to get from the first image… To the last one.

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It is definitely a two-man job but not a difficult one. Up goes a panel and while one holds it in place and pushed tight against the base and its neighbour panel, the other then screws it bottom and sides to the next panel.

The next task, attaching the curved roof timbers, was a slower job because they are attached at each side with small metal brackets using fiddly little screws plus being up a ladder. But from start to finish, and in all of this construction work we were not in a hurry or rushing things, it took over an hour to fit all of the curved roof timbers and the two end sections.

So below is where we got to by 4.00pm when we decided to call it a day. Tomorrow we need to complete the roof pieces to cover the porch area, and then apply the tongue and groove roof boards.

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After James headed off and I did a few chores, I decided it would be pleasant and relaxing to do at least one side with the primer undercoat I had bought from Screwfix that comes very highly recommended. It’s a job that needs doing, so why not get a bit of it done. And, in the way of these things, a couple of hours later and I had done the whole lot.

And so, construction Day 3 looms and the forecast is for it to be very hot and sunny all day.

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Day 3: 

Today’s forecast was for the hottest day of the year so far and they didn’t get it wrong. It was in the 70s with not a cloud in the sky. I was up early and while having my first coffee of the day, I tried a patch of the blue I have selected for the exterior to check the colour. It will need another coat but I like the light blue.

Paint Test

I was probably jumping the gun last night by priming/undercoating the build so far because we added on the porch today which will need to be primed. But what I have done certainly wasn’t a waste of time. We started work before 9.00am and we used the van to move up all of the tongue and groove roofing boards – there are three sizes that make up a length. As we looked at things, we discovered a slight error in that one of the roof beams was not in the right place – we were about 5cms out, so we did a bit of remedial work to get that set up perfectly. Then we built the porch which went together well. We had some head scratching because we hadn’t noticed that we needed a little batten up top on the outside of the porch upright at each side, but once we realised that, it didn’t take long to find the two bits of board and get everything properly lined up ready to start work on the roof boards.

A word of caution on those curved roof beams. They are held in place by a little bracket which you can see in the photo below. It stands slightly proud – and we couldn’t see a way of avoiding that – which causes some fun and games when you try to put a roof board on top of it. We worked out a way – bash down the metal edge that is protruding and leave the board above loose while you fit the final board, then nail them both down. But it would be good if a nick could be taken off that bracket in manufacture – or maybe we should have positioned it further inward so it didn’t stand proud, but that doesn’t look right as you can see from the second shot.

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From the time stamp on the photo, I can see that we started work on boarding the roof at 12.00. It was really hot so it was sweltering doing the work but we got it all done by 3.25pm, which included about 40 mins for lunch.

By the time we had roofed the entire hut, we were tired and decided to call it a day. We haven’t quite made up our minds about the roof – use the felt supplied or go for a corrugated roof with insulation beneath. So we will have to leave things for a few days while we earn a crust so we decided to cover the roof with a tarpaulin. It is not big enough but I have a bigger one that will go on before the rain arrives tomorrow afternoon.

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After my friend James left, I was still in the mood to just potter about and do a little more. So I fitted the doors and the door frame and that was a fairly easy process. I just needed my wife to hold the components steady while I screwed them and we got the doors hung after a bit of messing about trying to put them on backwards!

Then I decided to fit the little gates things at the end of the porch. I was hot and tired and not at my brightest so there was an awful lot of head scratching and trying to figure out these strange hinges. I have never seen anything like them in my life before. On the left, that’s just one hinge – I know they are special and let the little gate thing swing either way and open back out of the way. I couldn’t figure out how to fit them, so I left that for another day when I am less tired and hot and bothered…

I contemplated getting out the primer and doing the new pieces we had fitted – mainly the porch – and also the underside of the interior roof but it was still very hot and I decided instead to make up the steps which was a fairly easy task.

Shepherd Hut Completed.

So that’s it. There is more work to do – the roof in whatever material we decide to do it, but other than that we’re pretty much there. There’s the fitting out to do – prime and paint the rest of it; add the exterior trim, run some electric cables inside for lights and power; insulate inside and then panel the walls; lay an oak laminate floor; general painting and decorating and “dressing” the hut, etc. etc. I’ve bought a sofa bed from Ikea specially for it and I have been collecting a few period things that will look the part. But that is an on-going fun element which we will do over the next couple of weeks because we are in no hurry.

As I was reading customer comments on building one of these, it was suggested you can build one in a weekend. Of course the devil is in the detail – at what stage do you determine it is built? If you look at our timings and what you see in the photo above, then certainly, two averagely handy guys, working at a steady, unrushed pace, got this far in a long weekend. If we were building the other one, I think it would be quicker because we did an awful lot of head scratching and that’s understandable. There are no written instructions in terms of describing that you need to do this, then that, etc. etc. and how you do it. The manual is made up of about 18 pages of drawings – very well annotated drawings – that show you what is needed, and where and how it is placed. It shows you what screws to use and where necessary, there are little exploded drawings for key details. It is easy to miss something or confuse two pieces of the jigsaw so double check everything. That is not to criticise the instructions – but what we realised is that we weren’t familiar with following this kind of instruction booklet and at times things didn’t make sense. And then the penny would drop and you would see what was required and it was easy.

I think, most of all, I’m happy with the attitude we approached the build with: this is going to be fun. Let’s enjoy this. We certainly did despite the head scratching as we turned another page onto another stage of the build until it sank in what we were looking at and what we needed to do.


Thank you to James for your article. We appreciate the amount of detail and passion you show in both your writing and your images! I send my best wishes for when you build the other one and modify it. We would love to see images of the interior design when you’re finished!

Other customer experiences, build articled and ideas can be found here: Pictorial Tuin Reviews.

Chloe Log Cabin Review

One of our lovely customers, who I will refer to as Mrs A has sent us a review of their experience of building their Chloe Log Cabin which would be used for a garden gym! As well as their service that they had received from our team here at Tuin.


Mrs A writes as follows:

At the bottom of my garden sat an 8x9ft Summer House, not a very old one around 18 months old which I purchased on-line the quality sadly reflected the price I paid from the on-line supplier. It was purchased for use as a gym by for my son, but it was soggy and damp and not fit for purpose as the walls were so thin and badly manufactured. We took it down and sadly it was so damp to the tip it went as I don’t think we would have been able to burn and sing around it as it went up in flames cursing the on-line supplier who’s rating on Trustpilot seems to have more red stars than I have ever seen.

We decided it was time to spend our savings on something bigger and much better quality that we could divide and use half as his gym and the other half as a nice relaxing space. I started the search, so many places to buy but as I had made such a bad purchase the first time around I didn’t want to make the same mistake again. My friend at work had been talking about a large summer house her friend had brought from a company called Tuin which she helped to build and couldn’t fault the company or the quality. So off to the Tuin website I went and started to look, the range of products was fantastic so many choices of all sizes, my imagination went wild and before I could stop myself was looking at the biggest ones I could get and imagining what I could put in side! However reality hit me that evening when I got home and measured the space I could use and although I was going to build a giant palace the biggest I could purchase was a 4x3m. I then found Chloe, she was the right size and looked perfect and even better in budget.

I contacted Tuin and after fantastic service from Richard, who I say goes over and beyond for customer satisfaction I placed the order in late February. As we had yet to build the base I picked the furthest delivery slot I could to allow us to build a concrete base where Chloe was going to take residence. Building the base seemed to take forever due to bad weather and finally it was done. Left it for a couple of weeks to dry off and then Chloe arrived and we were ready to build – have to say I enjoy DIY work but both me and my husband were really looking forward to the build it’s like giant Lego for adults and you get to use big mallets!

Now, onto the process of building Chloe…

When we ordered we selected a required delivery week and the Sunday before I received an email for payment, once this was complete I received a call from a very nice lady from the delivery company to arrange a delivery date.

We knew from looking on the Tuin website how the cabin would be packaged and the size of the packaging. I would recommend you take a look at the site so you have an idea how large your delivery will be so you can work out where you want it to be put. We knew that it would be a couple of weeks before we would be able to start the build so by having it placed in the garden next to the driveway would mean that we didn’t have to worry about not being able to use the driveway for the next couple of weeks.

She arrived on the advised date as promised, no sitting around for a delivery that doesn’t turn up when advised and we have all done that. I received call from driver that morning advising us roughly what time he would arrive, my husband was at home and was watching for the lorry, then down the road came a forklift with the cabin. The driver had had to park up the road and drive the forklift into our close as once he had the lorry in he would not have been able to get back out again. My husband asked if he could drop it other side of the drive which he did with no problems. A couple of my concrete edging blocks were slightly damaged and the driver was very apologetic but it’s wasn’t a problem, he had nearly a ton of cabin plus whatever his forklift weights driving over them which we asked him to do you cannot make an omelette without breaking a few eggs. He was unable to stop for a well-deserved cuppa as his very large lorry was parked up the road and didn’t want to upset anyone so he had to move it quickly. Chloe then sat in the front garden for a couple of weeks until we were ready to start the build.

The Chloe Log Cabin Unpackages

The unpackaged components to the Chloe Log Cabin

Picture taken after we had started to move the parts into the back garden (sorry I forgot to take a picture of the wrapped package). If you don’t start your build straight away don’t worry the cabin is so well wrapped it will be fine, and will wait until you are ready.

As you move parts sort them as you go putting all the parts into piles according to size, you can then use the checklist provided to check you have all the parts. I did expect parts to be numbered which would make it easier but none of them were, however as you start to check off the larger parts then it does become easier.
When we finished checking parts I noticed that one of the parts had a large crack, we wanted to start build over the weekend so I emailed Tuin out of hours service to see if we were able to use the part or needed a replacement (it was 9pm on a Friday night) and I received a response within 15 mins. I sent over pictures of the damage and was advised it was fine to use or if I wasn’t happy they could send a replacement. We opted to use it but receiving a response on a Friday night was great service. Really I wanted peace of mind it was ok to use, last thing we wanted to do was use it only to find out we should have waited for a replacement.

Day 1, the build started at… 10am…

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I am helping, but someone has to take pictures ☺ however to get to this stage has taken 30 mins and most of that time it was checking that everything was square. The whole cabin is slotting together very nicely.

By the last image we were ready to put in the doorframe, a quick email to Tuin as from the instructions we were not 100% sure on orientation of the frame. Saturday morning and quick response received from Tuin clarifying our question and we are good to go again. Tuin’s contact team can go back to watching Saturday morning Kitchen ☺

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To be honest, the build is so much quicker than we expected!

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It’s now around 5pm and the cabin is built! We are calling it a day as it seems the neighbours have had enough of us banging in the garden all day. Despite me not being in any of the pictures it has taken just 2 of us to build this in one day. The build went very well, only one slight problem with the door not shutting correctly, this was a job for the next day.

Day 2, time to put on the roof tiles… Not so many pictures of this as we were both on the roof. One slight problem nothing to do with the cabin but the ladder being on very uneven ground meant that it slipped when we were up on the roof and neither of us could get down. The cabin might not look very high from the ground but it is high when you want to get down. After a few min’s of us laughing about how we were going to get down and me trying to step onto damaged shed roof our neighbour noticed and asked if we wanted her to come round and hold the ladder. We arrived on the ground safely which was a bit of a relief as after too many cups of tea before starting on a cold day nature was calling.

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The shingles do take a long time to put on, most of the day to be honest but once you get the hang of putting them on it is very easy. Yes it would be quicker and easier with felt but once you take a step back and look at the result well I think it says it all!

So Chloe is now completed and looking great. The base around Chloe does look a bit of a mess but that job is for next weekend.

The finished image of the Chloe Log Cabin

The following weekend; decking, steps and raised platform fitted.

Chloe is finished!

The quality of the product is excellent, the cabin is well designed and slots together so well, we are very pleased and Chloe is now the pride of our garden.

The whole Tuin team are a pleasure to deal with, they are all very knowledgeable they know the product inside out and I would have no problem in recommending them.

You may be wondering why none of the pictures show the inside of the cabin, well I intend to write another review once the floor is down, as we blew our budget on the cabin we have been saving for the floor, also at the moment a few bits of furniture and a weight bench sitting on a concrete floor does not really show her off. We intended to put down a plywood base sitting on some 2×2 with laminate floor on top, but after sitting inside and looking at the walls and roof this would not do her justice. The floor would look so much better with ‘real’ wood so we have just placed an order for the wooden floor pack which we feel will look so much better. Once this is down then I will take some more pictures of the inside.

Well think I have just about covered it, thank you Tuin!

 


Thank you to Mrs A for your article, reading how our customer service helped ease your confusion on building was great to hear. Your Chloe log cabin looks stunning! We’ll be looking forward to see images on how you modify the inside of your log cabin to make your gym/relaxation area!

Other customer experiences, build articles and ideas can be found here: Pictorial Tuin Reviews

Lukas Log Cabin – Mr W

One of the best things I love about my job is building up a relationship with a customer and seeing the whole thing through to the end. From the initial email to questions and talking about it, then onto the sale, the delivery questions, and then onto the fit and questions involved with that. Maybe we made a mistake and something needs to be sent – we are only Human and mistakes can happen.

All of this creates a relationship and I love it, some customers I can really click with and I always go that extra mile for them as do the other staff.

Mr W is one of those customers, over the years I’m sure I have developed a sense of what people are like just by the way they write in their emails and I clicked with Mr W.

I think it’s because we’re perhaps a little similar and have the same interests. This is his newly completed Lukas Log Cabin and the pictures Mr W kindly sent me this evening:

Mr W new log cabin with integral shed.

Mr W’s new log cabin with integral shed – The Lukas.

Mr W wrote; ‘We have a dyke surrounding our back garden, and we can look over this to the fields beyond from the position where the cabin is sited. Deer, Hares and rabbits abound in the fields and I am really looking forward to watching them all from the cabin.’

A man after my own heart, I love nothing better than just sitting and watching what is happening around me in my field and hut.

Here’s some more pictures of Mr W’s Lukas Log Cabin:

Inside the Lukas, very cozy indeed and somewhere to watch natures goings on.

Inside the Lukas log cabin, very cosy indeed and somewhere to watch nature’s goings on.

Mr W wrote: ‘Using spare timber that was used in the packaging for the cabin, I made two full length shelves in the shed half’

A cunning use of left over timber from the pallets and spare boards.

A cunning use of left over timber from the pallets and spare timber in the shed side of the log cabin.

A really nicely laid floor and another shelf, notice also the excellent placement of a vent

A really nicely laid floor and another shelf, notice also the excellent placement of a vent

Here we see Mr W's view, a perfectly done roof and good guttering to a water but. A great install.

Here we see Mr W’s view, a perfectly done roof and good guttering to a water but. A great install. You’ll also notice on the roof our solar panels powering the lights inside, they really are very good!

Mr W wrote to me this evening:

‘Cabin is almost complete now. Just a few finishing touches left to do.
We have been enjoying the peace and tranquillity it gives this afternoon.
The Lukas cabin really was very easy to build, and thanks to you and your excellent after sales (and after hours) service meant that the build went without a hitch. I think the hardest part of the build was painting the cabin, inside and out. 5 litres of wood preservative and wood stain took us a little while to accomplish but that is all finished now, and it really looks great. Using spare timber that was used in the packaging for the cabin, I made two full length shelves in the shed half. I was going to use it to store garden furniture, but I think the other half has different ideas. I dare say she will win, and certainly the shelving will be used to store her threads, yarns and wools, that she will frequently use while ‘relaxing’ in the cabin. We have built the cabin overlooking a dyke that surrounds our back garden. Beyond that we have a fantastic view across fields and open countryside.

Very kind regards to you and your team’

It’s this sort of thing that I love, a relationship with a customer, a start, a middle and an end to a transaction and hopefully I’ll hear from Mr W again in a year or two to give me an update. So often I just do the sale and I hear nothing afterwards, an ending is rewarding so please always let me know how you get on.

Mr W, thank you very much and I hope you have a long and happy retirement enjoying your views. A Goodie box is winging it’s way to you as a thank you for being such a great customer and making me smile

A customer’s forum post

I’ve come across a forum that a customer of ours has posted to regarding his research and subsequent purchase of his log cabin from us.  It makes for entertaining reading.

He also has some very good pictures on their of the start and end of his project which maybe interesting to you if you are thinking about buying a log cabin.

His base pictures and write up are also quite interesting and you will find unfortunately that he made a mistake with his base and is a good lesson to learn from if you are making your own base for your log cabin. It also shows a very good way of getting out of a problem which could be useful when faced with a very unlevel base.

Please understand we cannot be held responsible for the content of this forum and that there are a few swear words in the content. It does make a very entertaining read though.

Customers Forum Post:  https://www.talkaudio.co.uk/ipb/index.php/topic/373957-talkdiy-the-shed-thread/

You may be also interested in other customers buildings posts and thoughts: