There are some key players in the Tiny House Movement that have been a very valuable resource to me. Kent Griswold and the Tiny House Blog are an excellent resource. He has a links page that will connect you to the full breadth of the Tiny House Society and all the cool things that are going on. There is quite a bit of momentum in our society at the moment that is pushing this agenda.
Jay Shafer and Tumbleweed Houses is really trying to make a go of the movement that he has in a lot of ways become the face of. It is his exposure that is really pushing a lot of the opportunities that are happening right now in the move toward downsizing. I have attended Jay's seminars, I have bought Jay's book, I have visited Jay's open house. He has a lot to give and he charges a price for it. I applaud him for what he has done. I am also excited for what He will continue to do to tell the Tiny House story. Jay and Steve are good folks I wish them nothing but success.
Another great resource for me was Jeff & Arlene's Blog Mobile Cottage. I stole their naming convention as I am not going to use plans bought from anyone and was not creative enough to come up with my own. I have used the link to their pictures more then I can give credit for. This has been invaluable for me to have the insight I needed to design my own Cottage. You can see the pictures here.
I will also set up a Picasa library for my pictures as I go through the build. Jeff & Arlene, thanks!
All this being said, what I wanted to do is show you the decisions I made that were right for me. If you are being driven by a tight budget then you need to evaluate where to spend your money and where to really see what you can find from society. I was able to get 6 new (wrapped in plastic with cardboard boarders) Pella Impervia Windows for $600.00 on Craigslist. Retail for these would have been around $2450. Deals are out there - be patient, be careful and ask a lot of questions. Here are the systems I choose. I will do an individual post around a couple of these as I go through the install process.
Water Heater - Precision Temp RV 500, there is a good article on the RV Doctor Blog on this water heater.
Toilet - Biolet I chose to go this route on the waste disposal issue. Primarily because of availability and cost. These are available at Home Depot, here.
Stove - I went with a two burner Seaward model 2277
Heater - The large P12000 fit my need (I hope) from Dickinson Marine
Water Pump - Aqua Jet WPS Flowmaster 5.0 from Johnson Pump
Trailer - Customer build for less then a new off the lot that I would have to modify anyway. MS Metal Works
From a needs perspective those are your key investments, that being said the only thing on that list that is AC is the Biolet. Everything else is DC which then would require you to have some sort of DC power plant. While there are several options here, I chose to go the solar route. I have primarily used two sites and the Solar Living Sourcebook as my resources to go solar. The two sites are Backwoods Solar which has been excellent to deal with, very prompt shipping and super customer service, and Go Green Solar. I had a challenge trying to match up equipment and emailed Go Green with a question and in 30 minutes had a detailed explanation of my issue. Both have been very reliable to buy from over the web. My bet when all said and done the Solar decision will have added $4000 to the budget.
Solar Panels - Kyocera 135 Watt (2) bought them from Backwoods
Charge Controller - Blue Sky Solar Boost 2000E
Battery Monitor - Tri-Metric 2025RV
Inverter - Samlex America was the brand, the one I bought was 1500-watt-12v Pure Sine Wave TN1500-112F
Other key bits of info that were important to me:
Towing Regulations for all around the Country can be found at Towing World
Best book ever on your shit and how to deal with it. Humanure Handbook
And as you probably already know, YouTube is a great place to get info. I have used it extensively for building tips and solar insight.
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