The Content Of The Article:

At the insistence of his grandson, Claude Renaudineau "cracked", without much resistance, and realized the portico that the child dreamed. Better, he went beyond, adding a playhouse and a slide.

A portico and its hut

Level: Confirmed
Cost: less than 1,000 euros
Time: 2 and a half weeks (spread over several months) equipment: combined with wood, drill-screwdriver, electric saws, ripper, laminator, tape measure, pencil, ratchet, hammer...

See the plan of this realization (in pdf): shelter and portico for child: the plan

Retired recently, Claude Renaudineau has been passionate about carpentry since his teenage years. Indeed, he entered the world of work by doing his apprenticeship in a carpentry. He then practiced this noble profession before orienting his career to other paths. But he has kept the love of wood and work well done during all these years, spending part of his spare time making carpentry and furniture for his personal use, his family, his friends... Since his retirement, he devotes more time to his passion, helped by his good and old combination wood purchased thirty years ago, modified and improved over time. "I subscribed to System D, which I found out a bit late," he explains, "because I find ideas for making things and well-researched articles.

Originally a portico

Our reader pushed the project a little further than expected by adding a playhouse to the initial project to the delight of his grandson. The principle of construction remains quite simple.

A wooden frame supports two floors (low and high), a cladding made of plywood panels, a cladding board roof and the end of the gantry beam. A staircase leads the children to the floor where they can play and take the toboggan on the opposite side.

After drawing the plans on paper, Claude Renaudineau drew the whole scale 1 on plywood panels. This allowed him to note the exact dimensions of the various pieces of wood, including those of tenons and mortises.

To know; all the wood used for the construction of the hut, the floors, the staircase and the portico are made of autoclave treated pine. A treatment that guarantees for at least ten years their behavior in the face of climatic aggressions and insects.

The supporting framework

The structure of the cabin rests on four posts of 2.60 m, mortise-tenons, pegged and glued, at the ground level, the "ground floor", and upstairs by sleepers. Two lateral planks, acting as some sort of sand-slats for the roof, are tenoned and pinned at the top.

The base of the posts is tapered into fastening lugs sealed in concrete pads. A Teflon wedge 30 mm thick (resized in a worktop recovered in a butcher's shop) is inserted between the concrete pads and the feet of the posts to protect them against rising damp.

Floors out of water

At each level of floor, the joists that will support the end of the blades, are screwed on two opposite crosspieces. A "joist" is tened in the middle of the other crosspieces of each floor to reinforce them and to prevent the blades from sagging.

The pine blades with chamfered edges and grooved surface (non-slip), purchased in a large DIY area, are fixed on the cleats and the joist with stainless steel screws. They are spaced 10 mm apart to let the rainwater run off.

Rain cover

The two levels of the hut are partially closed. On three sides for the "ground floor" and two for the floor, with plywood panels, quality "marine". They also act as bracing.

The panels were placed on the framework of the cabin leaving a peripheral clearance of 5 mm. This space avoids the stagnation of the water in the panels / frame angles, compensates for the expansion of the wood and contributes to the ventilation of the cabin. The ambient humidity after a rain is evacuated more quickly. The panels are fixed with aluminum angles, screwed on the inside.

The outer face of the panels is grooved to the ripper to create a paneling effect. Despite the resistance to water and humidity of the panels, our reader has reinforced the protection of its work against rainwater. Two layers of microporous paint complete this finish.

A roof clapboard

The frame of the roof is reduced to its simplest expression. Two farms are placed at each gable and an intermediate in the middle. They assemble in miter ridge with glued Lamello dowels.

The cover consists of boards previously stained. They overlap slightly, like clapboard cladding, to ensure a certain tightness. The planks are attached from below to the rafters with Z-shaped metal legs. Recovered on a construction site, they allow free expansion of the wood and are invisible after installation.

Made with four panels of marine plywood painted red, assembled by gluing and nailing, a fireplace is placed on the roof. Metal brackets screwed to the boards and panels hold it in place.

Stairs and balustrades, simple but safe

Made to measure, the access to the floor and the slide remains simple in its realization. The steps, grooved on the surface of the router to make them anti-slip, fit on the stringers with Lamello-type dowels.

The two handrails as well as the starting and intermediate posts are assembled by gluing and screwing. The march is supported by four small posts embedded in the ground. They also help to recover the ground level, slightly sloping.

The balustrades, staircase and toboggan side, are manufactured and put in the same way. The balusters at each end are assembled in the milled mortises in the crossbar of the floor and the handrail. The latter is fixed horizontally in the same way to the finish post, cut diamond point, and on the post of the frame.

A solid portico

It is made with a bastaing 145 x 60 mm, supported at the free end by two posts, anchored with tabs on small concrete slabs. Side hut, it is a metal shoe bolted on both sides on the plate that sustains it.

A thick T-iron recovered from a construction site is fixed with lag bolts under the beam. The iron has been pierced to receive the rings for tackle on which will hang the ropes of the swings and the ladder.

Post plans on the panels

Post plans on the panels

The plans of the hut and the portico are reported on a scale of 1 on plywood panels. This allowed our reader to tailor parts, including tenons and mortises.

Precise and effective work

Precise and effective work

The combined wood, aged thirty, but still effective. Somewhat modified and improved over the years, it has made it possible to work wood pieces quickly and accurately.

Embed the central joist in the mortises

Embed the central joist in the mortises

Bottom view of a floor. The central joist is encased via its tenons in the milled mortises in the middle of the sleepers. Beech dowels cut by hand, solidarize the assemblies.

Assemble, nail, fix

Assemble, nail, fix

The rafters of the shore farms, assembled by Lamello at the ridge, are nailed to the top of the poles cut at an angle along the slope of the roof. The middle farm is attached to the sand board.

Install railings

Install railings

The balustrades of the railings, staircase and toboggan side, are tenoned at each end, assemble after gluing of the mortises practiced in the crossing of the floor of floor and in the handrail.

Assemble the parts of the balustrade

Assemble the parts of the balustrade

The post of the balustrade is vertically assembled by tenon and mortise in the cross of the floor and horizontally to the handrail. And always the pegs in beech that consolidate.

Support the gantry beams

Support the gantry beams

A metal shoe bolted on both sides of the board "sablière" supports one end of the gantry beam. It is blocked by lag bolts screwed on the sides of the hoof.

Anchor the poles

Anchor the poles

Two posts are fixed at the last quarter of the gantry girder. They are bonded with self-locking nuts on through threaded rods. On the ground, they are anchored in a concrete pad.

Dress and paint the panels

Dress and paint the panels

The marine plywood panels that adorn the facades of the cabin are grooved on their outer face. Two layers of microporous paint are applied on both sides.

Fix the cladding panels

Fix the cladding panels

The cladding panels are fixed to the posts and crosspieces with aluminum angles. A clearance of 5 mm allows the ventilation of the cabin and avoids the stagnation of the water in the angles framing / panels.


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