Beginning a journey to live more simply…

Progress on Plumbing.

Sunday, April 10th, 2011:

Opened up all of the windows in the tiny house and cranked up the propane torch to sweat the 1/2″ copper water piping. Got off to a slower start, but caught up quickly to the learning curve.

We’ve run the water line inside of the house instead of within the walls to address potential freezing concerns that can be more prevalent in copper piping in the winter. While the 1/2″ copper pipe was a bit more pricey and installing it has been quite a bit more work than simply glueing PVC, we are very pleased with the end result.

To allow us to keep the torch flame away from the knotty pine walls, we decided to try soldering each fitting out from where the water line would actually be placed. We did purchase an insulating cloth designed to protect walls from this very thing- but at the last minute felt that we could sweat the entire assembly and then put it all in place with only one last fitting to heat up close to any wood. Thanks to the small size of our water piping needs, this methed ended up working quite well.

Many Thanks to Dave Jones for the plumbing expertise, extra set of hands, and great company!

Comments on: "Progress on Plumbing." (6)

  1. Every time I get one of your posts along with other emails, I save if for last, checking all the others first and deleating as necessary so I can linger over your, and savour every detail, studying the pics and re-reading the descriptions. After all is complete, you should compile it all into a book with reflections about the experience and how it effected you personally, and socially. Great stuff!

    • Hi Theresa,

      Wow, that’s fantastic -thanks for such a wonderful compliment! We agree, it could be fun to compile the info here that’s documenting the project and flesh it out, putting it into more of a narrative format. Thanks for the good idea and great encouragement!

      Warm regards,
      Evan & Gabby

  2. I’m planning to keep all the pipes “inside” the house as well, for several reasons. For fear of freezing, as you explained. Also, I don’t want to weaken the walls by drilling large holes through the studs, but also, with the pipes on the surface of the wall (under cabinets) one can see the pipes in the event that there is a leak, it is easy to find and fix. I specifically arranged the bath, washer, kitchen next to each other so it would be easy to plumb.

    You chose to go with copper. Was that a preference over pex or CPVC specifically?

    • Hi Evan and Gabby,

      I just checked a map and you are about 8 hours South of me, here in Wisconsin. So, hello neighbor.

      About the choice of copper for piping. I have read that plastic has its issues, so I know what you mean. FYI, copper comes in flexible and can be put together with compression or flared fittings, as well as sweating, if that helps you at all.

      As for the washer. I have a front loading Whirlpool duet sport. I tried a front-loader, in 2007 at a friends, and was sold. Check these figures: Uses 1/3 the water of a top loader, uses 1/2 the electricity of a top loader, uses like 1/2 the detergent AND it gets the clothes cleaner. When the clothes come out they are drier and thus dry faster, however you choose to dry them. My duet is about 27″ wide and 32″ deep. I’m putting a shelf directly above it, in my Tiny house, for my refrigerators.

      Having a washer is one of my Must-haves. As for drying I either hang outside or on drying racks.

      I’ve got my first video of my Tiny house adventure almost done and will be posting on You-tube very soon.

      It’s always exciting seeing the progress on yours. I like your spacious porch too.


  3. I’ve really been enjoying following along with your build. I completely agree with putting the pipes outside the walls. Not only is it practical for so many reasons, but decorative as well. I have to say that the copper against the wood is quite nice looking; especially if you get copper pulls for the doors / drawers to tie in the whole ‘look’ through-out the house.

    I can’t help but think that years down the line you will be
    glad you made the choice when you have to do maintenance or fix a pipe issue.


    btw – is your pet named for Wayah Bald on the AT?

    • Thanks for your kind feedback Paula. You’re right, it does look kind of nice. Glad you noticed that!

      Yes, he sure is! We fell in love with that particular section, and enjoyed keeping the name in our everyday lives! (By the way, Wayah is a Devon Rex, which are typically very, very short haired. Almost no hair at all on some Devon’s. So, we thought it was also kind of funny to name our Devon after a ‘Bald’… Turns out he’s quite furry as far as the Devon breed goes, so the joke is now anecdotal only. Thanks for recognizing the name!)

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