Bed Shed

I built a bed shed, a small shelter with a sleeping platform built into it. It’s quicker to build than a large hut but can be extended later on when materials and time become available. It’s not far from the dome shaped grass hut I built earlier.
The hut is 2 m long and 1 m wide. Four posts were hammered into the ground, two 1 m high posts (1.25 m long, 25 cm underground) on the low side and two 2m high posts (2.25m long, 25cm underground) on the high side. Onto this, a sloping rafters was lashed on with fish tail wait-a-while, a spiky palm with a vine like habit. To remove the needle like spikes from the plant, the leaves are pulled off so that the frond sheaths come with them. This made suitable lashings.
Battens were then tied to the rafters and bundles of long grass from the mountainside were collected. Using vine from the bush, the bundles were lashed to the battens starting at the low side and continuing to the top so that the grass would shed rain. Cross bars were lashed to the frame of the shed at each end to support the bed. These were at a height of 1m above the ground.
The bed frame itself was made from four poles (two 2m long and two 75 cm long) lashed together to form a rectangle 1.75m long and 75 cm wide (the ends of the two longer poles extending further to sit on the cross bars in the shed). Lawyer cane was then wrapped length ways over the frame to create horizontal threads. Then more lawyer cane was woven between these threads to form a sort of bed spring net. The bed frame was then put on the cross bars and tested to see if it could hold my weight. A mat I made from woven bark in a previous video was used for bedding and a bunch of grass for a pillow. In a rainstorm it was possible to make a fire in the space under the bed.
This structure is quick and easy to build. The bed is 1 m above the ground and provides plenty of area beneath to store fire wood and tools out of the rain as well as a place to sit and make things. The bed is comfortable and keeps the occupant off the ground away from ground dwelling creatures at night. The smoke coming up from the fire keeps mosquitoes away while providing heat and light reflected back from the roof. In fine weather the fire can be placed in front of the shed in the open while during rain the fire can be kept under the shelter to keep it dry. If room is needed to stand up the bed can be folded up against the roof and tied to it using cordage.
This shed is literally one half of the standard rectilinear hut I usually build (2m x2m floor plan, 2m tall ridge line and 1 m high side walls e.g. from wattle and daub hut and tiled hut videos) and was built to be upgradeable. Later, the other side of the roof could be added on and then walls of some kind built around the frame to form a full hut.

15 thoughts on “Bed Shed

    • There aren’t many places below creek level that don’t flood. I may build a shed type shelter with mud walls and use the hole left from taking the mud as a pond. The slopping roof would basically drain into the pond directly. Thanks.

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  1. Excellent project. I like how you can build onto the investment in the future. Was surprised you didn’t have a bench or ladder for working at heights.

    Your technical writing is as consummate as the video production.

    Thanks!

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  2. How do you pick which way to position the sloped roof? Against the rising or setting sun? Facing a valley or hill? Just curious if there are considerations for this decision?
    Thanks for continuously great posts!

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  3. Nice job, as always. I wrote a book many years ago about pioneer life in the U.S. and a fact I learned about their cabins is something I’ve observed in your work. Pioneer cabins were low because they were usually built by one man and the roof line was just above the height he could reach. This is also true of sod houses built in the late 19th century also. Watching your work is a nice respite in my very busy schedule.

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  4. Hey, so why wont you use artifacts to make fire that you previously builted? I thought things would get easier and easier. Great project, though! Congrats

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  5. Hello! My son and I are involved in an internship on a farm in North Carolina. We are curious about your location to compare and contrast native plants you may be using. Also, my son would like you to know he’s your biggest fan (he’s 9). Thank you!!

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  6. I really appreciate what you are doing. Although I admire the primitive techniques, it would also be a pleasure to see your work get easier as you create more tools, as well as to see more materials such as metals, sulphur, bone or glass. Keep up the incredible work!

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