Frequently Asked Questions

The Model 180 Shelter comes as a precut shell package ready to assemble and use for a variety of purposes. We have been asked many questions about the construction and use of our shelter buildings. The following is a list of answers to the most commonly asked questions. We have been asked many questions about the construction and use of our shelter buildings. The following is a list of answers to the most commonly asked questions.

What is a shell...?

A shell package is the basic exterior of the building, the basic structural part of the building with doors and windows. All finish work such as painting, roofing options, insulating and interior finish can be chosen by you to fit your intended use.

How long does it take to assemble and can it be moved...?

Our model 180 shell package can be assembled in as little as 2 hours. The average person should be able to have the shell up and usable in less than half a day. Larger units will take a little longer. The disassembly is just as easy, so the building can be taken down and readily moved to a new location. The model 180 kit fits in a standard pickup or small utility trailer for transport. Larger models will still fit in a trailer.

What materials are used and how long will it last...?

The materials we use are common in the house building industry. They have been designed to last under a variety of conditions in different climates. As with any house, the real life will depend most on the care and maintenance provided.

Can I insulate and heat the building...?

Yes to both. Standard insulation methods with batts, blow-in or sheet foam will all work. Sheet foam is our preferred method as it is easy to work with and does not require a separate vapor barrier. All insulations will have to be covered to meet building codes for fire rating. Heating can be in-floor radiant, wood stove, electric space heater or LP gas space heater. All must be installed per manufacturer's recommended clearances and building codes.

What type of foundation is needed...?

Our buildings can be set on leveling pads on the ground. They will be subject to moving with freezing and thawing in colder climates and will need anchors for high wind conditions. They can also be built on piers at each corner and the center, on a concrete slab floor, or even a full basement. Local building codes must be followed in all cases.

What are the standard materials in the Model 180...?

The model 180 shell package uses treated framing lumber for the floor and standard construction lumber in the walls and roof. The floor and roof panels are BCX grade plywood and the wood siding is LP Smartside. These are common building materials found in most new homes today.

Do these meet building codes...?

Yes, the shell package is designed to meet the Uniform Dwelling Code for structural strength. Any building finished for human habitation must have the proper number of doors or egress-rated windows for escape routes, smoke detectors, etc. Any finishing materials added and mechanical systems used must also meet the building code for your area for the intended use of the building.

What about zoning codes...?

Zoning codes vary from one site to the next. As an example, our county here in SW Wisconsin requires a land use permit for any structure over 120 SF in size (except for three townships in the county that are not zoned, in those no permit is needed). If the building is for housing it must have a sanitary permit for an approved septic or compost waste handling system. Check with your local government offices for the requirements in your area.

Please contact us with any other questions you may have.

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