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From Texas-sized 2 Tiny House For Three

Tiny House Exterior Tour Videos

I took the time to shoot a video showing off the (still!) unfinished outside of our house the other day, and it ended up being so long I split it into two segments. The reason for the length had to do with, surprise surprise, the beetle kill and my recounting of that ordeal. Ha! Anyway, I harped on it so much I cut all the footage of me discussing it and made it into an entirely separate video. Here they both are for you to enjoy, followed by a quick aside about the window trim that started bugging me after I watched the video again last night. Once again, perfectionism strikes again…. oi!

Now, about that window trim…

I pointed out in the first video that we doubled up the window trim as a “DIY-thing” because we felt it looked better. In my post-12-hour-ER-shift haze I failed to mention that there was a practical reason it was double up: adding the exterior foam siding caused the thicker beetle kill (1″ dimensionally thick), which was installed over 1/4″ thick lath to create a rain screen behind the siding, to stick out further than the edges of the windows themselves. Thus the need to thicken the 5/8″ thick reclaimed barn wood that became the window trim. That’s what I get for making videos when I’m exhausted. DOH!


A side view showing the 1″ tick beetle kill tongue & groove, the 5/8″ thick cedar belly band thickened with 1/4″ laths attached to it, and the 3/4″ thick cedar board & batten – all laid over 1/4″ thick laths to make a rain screen – with the doubled up reclaimed barn wood window trim (both pieces are 5/8″ thick) visibly jutting out past the various siding pieces. You can see that the edge of the window itself is recessed by about the 5/8″ thickness of the outer barn wood layer.

What also threw me off was that I was showing the doubled up window trim on the front wall, which has completely different siding on it from the rest of the house. That wall has nothing but the reclaimed 5/8″ thick barn wood on it laid over the 1/4″ thick lath rain screen, so it makes the doubled up window trim more pronounced. It doesn’t, however, change how the trim sits around the window, because it all still has that same exterior foam board under it, as well as the layer of 1/4″ thick laths. It’s only the siding above and below the window trim on this wall that is thinner.


See the single thickness siding below the double thickness window trim? It’s the 5/8″ thick reclaimed barn wood, and both of the pieces that are used to double all the sides of the window trim are also 5/8″ thick.

Anyway, it started bugging me that I didn’t explain the REAL reason we doubled up the window trim because, frankly, I was half asleep when I made the video. Still, I thought it was important enough to clarify for anyone doing what we did – using both the exterior foam insulation and multiple thicknesses of siding – so you have an idea of how to deal with the changes you might need to make to accommodate the windows.

Alternatively – and really most likely the “proper” way to adjust the windows to accommodate exterior insulation – you can extend the window jambs themselves as you’re building your wall. In fact, I’ve had this conversation before with someone who asked, and when I researched the topic the most common answer I found was to actually extend the window frames outward by enough to accommodate the thickness of your exterior foam. So, for us we would have added an extra 1/2″ to 1″ to the window framing on the outside of the house either by adding more wood to our already framed windows or, had we been building from scratch, simply framing the windows with the outer edge sticking out and have them be slightly recessed on the inside (meaning a wider “box” around them, the way a window seat looks but nowhere near that wide). Clearly I don’t know the technical terms for any of this stuff, but a google search for “extend windows for exterior foam insulation” gives you many options to research, including this one on “innie” and “outie” windows from Green Building Advisor. Ours are “innie” windows like you see on brick houses as a result of our trim and siding methods, and we like them just fine.

Anyway, that’s it for now! Enjoy your Sunday!

2 comments on “Tiny House Exterior Tour Videos

  1. Lesley
    March 31, 2015

    Very fun to watch your build and your videos. Love your use of reclaimed wood and that, even though it is a tumbleweed, the exterior is unique and not like the typical tumbleweed ones! I appreciate you telling us where you bought your materials and exactly what type they are. Giving us the brands and the colors of stains you use is extremely useful as well. Pointing out difficulties (sorry about the beetle kill fiasco), problems and imperfections along the way is great information to have! I look forward to seeing what you do with the inside!! Kudos and thanks!

    • meg & brandy - TH43
      April 2, 2015

      Thanks very much, Lesley! It’s all a giant learning process for us, and since we’ve drawn so much knowledge from those who went tiny before us it only seems fair that we share our experiences as well. Hopefully people will learn from our mistakes and find better ways of building their own homes along the way. Plus, it’s always frustrating to see something someone else did/used, fall in love with it, and then have no way of finding out what it is or where it came from. Sharing what we’re using will hopefully make it easier for other folks to make product decisions for themselves. Happy to share! -Meg

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