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Poop 07-07-2017 10:26 AM

this wall has a tree run right through the seam between it and the wall next to it, so i had to put another stud a few inches away, and brace above and below where the hole will be cut out for the protruding branch.

and here's the adjoining wall that also has to accommodate for that protruding branch. i must've measured this forty times, sure that after we finally got these bitches up on the platform, i'd realize i fucked up somehow. amazingly (AMAZINGLY) this all came together pretty easily once it was up there.

5 of 6 walls ready to install up there:

and finally, the trickiest of walls to prefab, as it would have to go around two additional protruding branches. it only gets minimally framed on the ground, deconstructed into two parts to install around branches, then from there constructed up there around the branches.


Poop 07-07-2017 10:28 AM

oh yeah, and those walls are HEAVY. all the lumber is salt treated, and pretty freshly so. i cannot overstate just how fucking heavy these things were. :HMMM::HMMM::(:(:mad::mad:

Rhode Warrior 07-08-2017 04:58 AM

Quality workmanship all the way. It's the only way to do it.

BTW, what a cute kid. Awesome Dad. :cool:

I have a couple of grandchildren now. I have so much fun with these little kids. Love it. :LOL:

Poop 07-10-2017 08:32 AM

thanks, rhode!

5 of six walls framed and sheathed, ready for installation.

sixth wall will need to be constructed around two additional protruding limbs. a very minimal skeletal frame is constructed on the ground, to be partially deconstructed on the platform and reconstructed around those limbs.

so, like i said, those walls are heavy as hell. my dad and i tried to figure a way to rig from an overhead branch to hoist these walls up, but still they were so heavy we just hit the damn easy button, and called my buddy will gomer up again. i've truly been blessed with some good friends.

since he came on a workday morning, we called my assistant out of the office to help move heavy ass walls on the platform.

great attitude there, abby. :LOL:

three of the walls sit on outside edges of the platform, and those have a lip of sheathing that overhangs the platform. these are hardest to install, so we screw those into place while we still have the crane truck available.

at this point, i'm sure my dad is wondering, once again, how he got roped into some mess like this.

four of six walls in place. amazingly, everything is fitting like a glove so far.

Poop 07-10-2017 08:34 AM

five and a half out of six, now. the last wall will need to be completed in place, around those protruding limbs. it's a lot harder to do this than to cut those limbs out, but they make the treehouse, i think.

the other protruding limb, that came at the seam of the two walls front right, fits perfectly, with room for sway during hurricanes. i have to admit, i was a little shocked.

first view from the inside!

Poop 07-10-2017 06:58 PM

okay, time to get this handrail right. from here out, the project is mostly a solo effort. so it goes, sometimes, but we bear it out.

so, saturday morning work crew:

now, to gather up the four corner posts for a complicated top cut.

weird angle.

corner post reinstalled using small l-brackets hidden under the decking.

Poop 07-10-2017 07:00 PM

top rail installed. very, very solid, and should not gather water to promote rot.


Poop 07-11-2017 05:38 PM

out of chronological order, but... surprise visit from a prospective tenant!

Poop 07-11-2017 06:45 PM

the mother of one of my son's classmates donated some windows to the cause. some were top sashes, some were bottom, but all were the same width, and we used the table saw to make them all the same height, with a 20 bevel at the bottom to ensure rain water drains away.

once again, my father-in-law toils away with me.

Poop 07-11-2017 06:48 PM

along with the windows, we picked out a pre-hung door for the front of the treehouse. all get two coats of oil based primer, two exterior acrylic.

i hate painting.


Poop 07-12-2017 04:05 AM

a little middle school math gives us the supplemental angle to the interior one, to split this fence board with for exterior trim.

a little high school math helps me figure where to put that split so that the two sides will evenly cover the edge. some quad sealant underneath and between, and i'll consider the corners weatherproof.

Poop 07-12-2017 04:07 AM

a little extra trim work around handrail and bottom joints...

and a final look at the hand rail and trim all done, with that last wall sheathed in around those two protruding limbs.


Rhode Warrior 07-12-2017 04:47 AM


Poop 07-12-2017 07:12 AM


when it came to the roofline, things got complicated for me. never having done this, and having no skills in cad or sketchup, i was left with pencil and paper to figure rafter angles and what not.

my first attempt was an embarrassing failure. i imagined that i could figure it out as I went along, and i couldn't.

so, it was time for this english major to resurrect high school math again.

Poop 07-12-2017 07:20 AM

nerdzerker: one of the toughest things about building around branches and tree trunks is the near impossibility of charting them in 3d to fit in plans. unsure of how to approach this roof without drawing two million triangles in space, i kind of winged it one morning with my buddy, who was kindly donating his time to the cause. it was a great embarrassment, as i quickly realized i was poorly prepared, and didn't really know what i was doing. so i went back to what i did know but had been hesitant to do: drawing two million triangles.

another limitation to building in a tree is fastening to the tree; the tree will endure a few large fasteners much better than it will many small ones. this can be particularly challenging, however, with a hip roof comprised of six different panels, to include three major trunk breaches.

my solution: to place the apex of the roof just a few inches away from the trunk, so that multiple hip rafters (the ones comprising ridges between roof sections) can join at one bracket, supported by the tree through one large fastener.

in the drawing below, the apex is placed 4.5 inches away from the trunk, to allow that much expansion of the trunk on that side without interference with basic structural geometry of the treehouse. four of the six hip rafters are joined at this point, and due to the distinct geometry of the tree, the two others could connect directly to parts of the trunk far enough away to prevent a larger compartmentalization by the tree. (what that basically means is that if several wounds to the tree trunk are too close together, the tree seals off the whole area as a single wound and lets it die, seriously compromising safety of the structure.) by this design, the roof only connects to the tree at three points, all safely far enough from each other to avoid this phenomenon.

using a compass, protractor, digital caliper, calculator, and known lengths and angles of walls, i was able to calculate lengths and angles of various imaginary lines between walls, corners, and the imaginary roof apex, in two dimensions. using these values, i'd be able to calculate roof pitches and rafter angles at various imaginary apex heights, to best select an ideal height for the roof. this, of course, is done by another generation of imaginary triangles.

nerdzerker, cont.: a little scratch work inspired by my trig teacher gave me the basic mechanism by which to figure various rafter angles depending on a variable height. this would determine the angles needed to be built into rafter attachment brackets, and attachment locations on the tree.

nerdzerker, pt. 3: though i'm a bit too simple to figure out cad or sketchup (computer drafting programs) to make these calculations for me, i figured it would be relatively simple to get excel to do it. so with the help of my office assistant (who quickly found out how to write trig functions into excel formulas), we made a little spreadsheet to execute the formulas from the preceding page for various roof heights. this allowed me to select the lowest roof height that would provide a roof pitch steep enough to use my desired roofing material. looking for a minimum 20 degree slope, this spreadsheet made clear that 114 inches would do the trick.


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