Frequently Asked Questions
Questions and Answers about wooden shed kits by Solid Build
Building your wooden shed or cabin is easier than you think. Detailed instructions accompany each kit. Piece by piece, the components fit together to create a shed that is at once appealing and durable. The result is a DIY job to be proud of. Please visit our garden shed kit assembly video library for more details.
It depends on the size of the shed, but usually it takes one day to build a 10’ x 10’ kit. A team of two somewhat handy people would assemble a shed in about 8 hours - that includes everything from anchoring, to installing the roof boards and the floorboards. Additional time is needed to prepare the foundation for your shed, install the roofing material of your choice, and to stain or paint your shed. Foundation and staining are typically the most time-consuming tasks, so expect to spend 2-3 days for a complete project.
These sheds are constructed in a "Lincoln Log" like manner. This type of construction has been used to construct homes in Northern Europe and Scandinavia for centuries. In fact, when Frank Lloyd Wright was supervising the construction of Imperial Hotel of Tokyo, he used a technique called “floating cantilever construction,” to protect the building against earthquakes. In this technique, the beams overlap and interlock at right angles, just like our sheds. That said, we do not have certificates issued by structural engineer, as these have to be issued by the engineers of each county around the US. But we have not had testimonies of sheds that had fallen apart due to earthquakes, and we suggest putting on the hurricane straps if one is coming just to be sure!
A tongue & groove (T&G) board profile means that each board has a groove on the thickness side along its whole length at the bottom and a tongue (a narrower extension) at the top. The tongue of each board matches the groove of the following board perfectly, creating a wind and watertight seal. Single T&G means that the board has only one groove per its thickness (1 1/8"), and double T&G means that the boards are thicker and have two grooves and tongues per board thickness (1 3/8"). The double T&G offers additional isolation and the boards flex less, making your shed sturdier and even longer-lasting. We recommend choosing double T&G sheds for office shed, she shed, art studio shed or other activities as thicker walls offer more options for subtle shelving and overall heavier use.
Solid Build wooden shed kit includes wall and roof components, tempered glass doors and windows, all door and window hardware plus extra boards, floorboards (select models) and trim parts. You will have to separately acquire foundation materials, anchors (depending on the type of foundation) and roof materials (see if you have some leftover material from your house!).
Permit requirements vary from county to county and even town to town. Please make sure to contact your local building department to find out whether a wooden shed requires a building permit in your area. Please contact us if you are asked for any specific information needed to receive the building permit.
A stamped structural wind report is available for Brishtol 13x11 garden shed, and Brightoln 10x10 garden shed through our engineering partner's website for a small fee. Please contact us for more information.
A firm, level base is essential. Concrete slab or compressed gravel foundation work the best for any type of shed. Another great and popular option is treated wood grid foundation which can be formed directly on the ground and filled with gravel, or raised on concrete piers if the soil in your area is soft. The shed can also be assembled on patio stones, super spikes, or cinder blocks that are placed under the treated floor joists, however, these options are most suitable for warmer climates with little precipitation and firm level ground. There is more information with pictures on the "How to build a shed foundation" page.
A roofing felt and shingles or metal roof are great options. We mostly see people use same roofing material that's on their house, to match the looks or simply use up the leftover material. Roofing material selection is very broad and mostly depends on your taste and budget. Synthetic shingles are the most budget friendly and very easy to install yourself, especially 3-tab. You can find various videos on Youtube showing how to do it, and it does not require a lot of expertise. However, synthetic shingles are not the best choice for hot and sunny areas, nor is it the longest lasting one. Metal roofing (with some insulation underneath) is best for hot areas as it helps to reflect the heat better. If possible, we do encourage you to choose a nature-friendly option, such as recycled shingles. Since shed roof area is relatively small, you might be able to source some reclaimed materials for your roof. And for the experimental types, explore the solar roof options, or a "green roof".
The shed roof load bearing capacity is 24 lbs/ sq ft. This will support most popular roofing materials and about a foot of semi-compressed snow. If you worry about snow, a gabled roof is a safer option, and you may occasionally use a broom stick to help the snow fall off - just give it a few gentle taps from the inside.
The answer is yes, and no. The walls of the shed cannot be insulated using a traditional post&beam framing method with a drywall finish as this type of construction prevents the wall boards from moving vertically when the wood expands or contracts, and causes gaps and splits to open up. That said, you can and most people do insulate the roof and floor to keep the shed from overheating or over-cooling in winter. It can be done by installing a sub-floor and stuffing the space between the floor joists with insulation material of choice. For the roof, form a 2x2 grid on top of the roof boards provided and fill it with insulation material, then cover with any other wood boards or plywood and install the roofing. Here is more information on shed insulation.
Solid Build garden sheds perform well as a tiny house or home office shed in temperatures as low as 40s with a simple space heater but may not be the best choice for a year-round residence in colder climates. We have customers who use them year-round in the Pacific Northwest, The Southeast and alike, however, in the areas experiencing deep winters, it's best for 3-season use.
Yes, you can make a fitted cutout in the wall to accommodate a vent, sleeve, or the whole window AC unit. Keep it at least 12 inches away from the corner and do not cut into the very bottom board, there are no other placement restrictions. Please note, that the shed has to be able to expand and retract vertically (it happens seasonally due to change in humidity and temperature), so it's best to use a flexible sleeve or conduit for venting so the AC unit installation can move up and down with the wood. The range of vertical movement is 1/2" to 2", depending on your climate.
These sheds are made out of solid 2″ tongue and groove Northern Spruce sourced from the sustainably managed forests in Northern Europe and Scandinavia. The lumber is link dried to 12% humidity and precision-cut to produce the beautiful sheds and cabins. Thick boards and reinforced roof structure allow these sheds to withstand harsh weather conditions. We do not use any harmful chemicals or glue for processing our lumber and meet all requirements for children and adult safe materials for the state of California and further.
SolidBuild® sheds are only sold online, and there is no storefront to visit, however, we have a handful of past customers across the country who are open to showing their sheds upon request - we call them Ambassadors. Please contact us with your zip code, we'll let you know where's the closest shed Ambassador, and arrange a visit with them. Please note, they are all private individuals who are kindly sharing their space, the arrangement may take some to make.
Due to COVID-19 imposed limitations, we are not able to take on custom orders. Please note, that even a seemingly small alteration of the existing model is considered as a custom order since a special manufacturing project has to be made for your particular modification, which requires the collaboration of multiple departments at the mill to ensure it is fulfilled as ordered. Unfortunately, that means no extra doors, swapping out windows, or adding lofts at the moment... If you are not in a rush, please reach out in a few months to see if the situation has improved!
Yes. The smaller sheds can be moved, however, we do not recommend moving cabins larger than the 13′x 10′ model. You can always disassemble the shed and reassemble it at a different location. If any wood damage occurs during the move, use wood filler and sandpaper for repair. It can fix almost any imperfection!
SolidBuild® sheds are made out of 100% natural wood and therefore, need to be treated just like any other wooden product. It is very important to apply wood sealant of your choice as soon as you erect your shed. By doing so, you will prevent discoloration caused by sun and possible water damage. Please maintain your cabin properly and it will surely keep its original appeal for many years to come. You may use from a variety of paints and stains available at hardware stores, or chose an eco-friendly product. So far a better selection of eco-stains and eco-paints is available online and we encourage you to do your own research as properties for each product (conventional or eco-friendly) give very different aesthetic results, vary in the ease of application, future maintenance, etc.
Here is a catalog of images with a list of stains and paints people used on their sheds for inspiration!
All our shed kits are manufactured in the European Union. Our mill is located in a small town in Lithuania and has been manufacturing these beautiful sheds since 1996. We source the lumber from the forests of Northern Europe and Scandinavia that employ sustainable forestry practices and have sustainable forestry certification. The scrap lumber is turned into mulch, leaving minimal to no waste. All our mill workers are paid above minimum wage, and get the whole month of vacation time! Yes, that's Europe.
Our US store opened in 2009 and has been successfully equipping the American yards and gardens ever since. Let us know if you have any more questions! The message bubble in the lower right corner might be the most convenient.