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Thread: Bear-proofing materials/supplies and gas usage.

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    Default Bear-proofing materials/supplies and gas usage.

    Next summer my family and I are planning on staying at our remote property for about a month to build a cabin. I already snow machined in all of my roof and floor lumber last winter. This winter I am going to haul in the logs for my cabin, along with my door and windows, insulation, and a lot of the other miscellaneous hardware and supplies. A couple things I am concerned about is the insulation and gas cans. I have heard about bears chewing up insulation and gas cans. Are there ways that I can prevent this from happening? I plan on using a Honda 2000 generator and also I will have my boat with a 20 hp engine to run around the lake and fish. I am figuring that I will need about 20 gallons of gas per week, so I plan on taking out about 80 gallons of gas. I am curious to know what other's think about my estimate on gas usage as well. Am I being too conservative with my estimate? I don't think I will go through an entire 5 gallons of gas per day. I was thinking maybe 5 gallons every other day was reasonable.

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    It's not just bears. Squirrels will be after your insulation also. You might be surprised how quickly a couple of them can decimate a pile of insulation. Your fuel, and anything rubber or plastic will need to be in something that is bear proof. Think about barrels with the lids you can clamp on. You may need to chain them to a tree, so the bears don't knock them over and the gas cans leak all over inside. A sturdy box made of plywood and screwed together should work for the insulation.
    Other critters like to chew on plastic stuff also.
    Hunt Ethically. Respect the Environment.

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    Member KantishnaCabin's Avatar
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    I use 30gal steel drums to store my fuel. They are small enough to manhandle when full and large enough that they can't be easily carried off. I typically haul in 200 gal of gas each winter for the next moose season. As far as the insulation, my solution was to frame and sheet my cabin all the way in one summer and get it dry. Then I hauled in the insulation on the first trip in the winter. -30 is a big motivator to work quickly when insulating. It sounds like you are going to use logs though, so you will be mostly worried about the roof and floor. Just leave and access to the attic as well as under the floor. Yes it's a pain to insulate after the fact however, its worse to find all your hard work shredded in the bushes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SmokeRoss View Post
    A sturdy box made of plywood and screwed together should work for the insulation.
    Good idea. I might do that.

    Quote Originally Posted by KantishnaCabin View Post
    I use 30gal steel drums to store my fuel. They are small enough to manhandle when full and large enough that they can't be easily carried off. As far as the insulation, my solution was to frame and sheet my cabin all the way in one summer and get it dry. Then I hauled in the insulation on the first trip in the winter. -30 is a big motivator to work quickly when insulating. It sounds like you are going to use logs though, so you will be mostly worried about the roof and floor. Just leave and access to the attic as well as under the floor. Yes it's a pain to insulate after the fact however, its worse to find all your hard work shredded in the bushes.
    I'm curious where you get the 30 gallon steel drums to store your fuel. I'd like to try that. I thought about insulating after the fact, but I'm not crazy about climbing under the floor to insulate in the winter time. Doesn't sound very fun. But you are right. I might have to do that.

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    Member ChugiakTinkerer's Avatar
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    This thread has some suggestions...

    http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...lon-fuel-drums

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    Member KantishnaCabin's Avatar
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    I have a friend that owns a shop and is an Amsoil distributor. He gets his motor oil in the 30gal drums and I re-purpose any that he doesn't use himself. You can find 30gal steel drums on craigslist from time to time. Caution, I have been warned off occasionally at the gas station for filling unauthorized fuel containers. Hehe, usually I just nod my head and finish filling. However, I'm sure that an overzealous attendant could cause trouble. I'm not sure what the fine and or penalty is, I guess one of these days I'll find out.

    As far as floor insulation goes, consider using 2" blue styrofoam for the floor insulation. A friend of mine decked his floor by sandwiching 2" blue insulation in plywood. It worked great and you never have to worry about critters getting underneath the cabin and causing trouble by spreading your hard work around.

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    Bleach and that ice melter blue salty stuff keeps the bears off of my 4 wheelers and fuel cans. Never had a problem.

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    If you think you can handle a full 55-gal drum, those are easy to find on craigslist.

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    Member ChugiakTinkerer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NRick View Post
    If you think you can handle a full 55-gal drum, those are easy to find on craigslist.
    You could always haul a 55 in empty (or partially filled) and add to it with 5 gal plastic jugs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NRick View Post
    If you think you can handle a full 55-gal drum, those are easy to find on craigslist.
    Quote Originally Posted by ChugiakTinkerer View Post
    You could always haul a 55 in empty (or partially filled) and add to it with 5 gal plastic jugs.
    Both are good ideas. Thanks fellas. Reps sent.

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    How about finding a used truck bed mounted fuel cell like contractors use to fill their equipment? You can get them up to 120+ gallon capacity and are sturdy as heck.

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    Member ChugiakTinkerer's Avatar
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    I find myself in the same situation. What did you decide on Bushwhack Jack?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChugiakTinkerer View Post
    I find myself in the same situation. What did you decide on Bushwhack Jack?
    Well I bought some petroleum rated 15 gallon gas cans to store my gas. They weren't cheap either. I believe they were around $60 each. We bought 5 of them and stored 75 gallons. As for storage for food and other miscellaneous items we found some lock-ring barrels for around $10 each. We bought those as Air Liquid in Wasilla. We bought 9 of them and we hauled about 60%-70% (just a rough guess) of all our camping and building supplies in them. As for the insulation, I opted to wait on the insulation. I am going to bring in a few bundles with me in the summer just to insulate the back half of my foundation floor because it will be much easier to do now rather than later. Then I plan on bringing in the rest of the insulation next winter when I have the shell completed and do the majority of the insulation in the winter time. Sucks I know, but I just can't bring myself to spend that much money on insulation and have a squirrel or a bear tear it all to pieces.

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    Member ChugiakTinkerer's Avatar
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    Thanks man, appreciate the info. The last few months have been a cold harsh education in remote logistics. I need to start planning for the summer and get fuel and supplies out now while there is still a trail.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChugiakTinkerer View Post
    Thanks man, appreciate the info. The last few months have been a cold harsh education in remote logistics. I need to start planning for the summer and get fuel and supplies out now while there is still a trail.

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    You're planning on building this summer already??!! Wow! You are moving on a much faster timeline than I did. I bought my land several years ago and I have been hauling lumber and freight for the past couple years. Lord willing we are going to start building this summer but it's been a long time coming for us. If you are planning this summer I'd say you are moving at a very rapid pace.

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    Member ChugiakTinkerer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bushwhack Jack View Post
    You're planning on building this summer already??!! Wow! You are moving on a much faster timeline than I did. I bought my land several years ago and I have been hauling lumber and freight for the past couple years. Lord willing we are going to start building this summer but it's been a long time coming for us. If you are planning this summer I'd say you are moving at a very rapid pace.
    Well, I was planning on building this summer, now I'll be happy just to get the foundation work done and some smaller projects completed. First thing of course will be an outhouse, then a dock so that future float plane trips will be easy peasy to load and unload. For the cabin I'd like to get everything but the sub-floor sheathing done this summer. Then come winter I can finish the floor and start putting up walls and a roof. Probably for the better, this will give me some time to reconsider my final cabin design.

    As to pace of construction, I'm coming to terms with reality and re-aligning my expectations. With the weather being so warm, I think this weekend may be my last opportunity to haul everything on site. So I gotta scramble to make sure I have enough materials, equipment, fuel, and supplies for our planned summer work. And haul gravel like mad.

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    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Use 5 sheets of the roof sheathing to make a box for the insulation. Cut one, 4' for each end. Then you have a 4x4x8' box for the insulation. These would be the last 5 sheets to go up on the roof. Once that is done move the insulation inside. A few moth balls around it will probably keep critters away.


    Best way to keep bears away from the fuel cans is to put a bear baiting permit up next to it. Probably clean them out for miles. :-)

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    Tinkerer & Jack , I have a little word to the wise . One of the most important things that you want to do in building a remote cabin is to build a decent outhouse. If you want a unhappy woman at your cabin just show her a crap of a outhouse. My outhouse is insulated and has t&g on the walls. Also I have a gas light that I turn on and turn it down low and it makes a big difference in comfort level . I have the propane tank mounted high in one corner that way it always stays warm. Another thing that I did not think of when I built my outhouse is that in winter you are dealing with getting a coat off . So when deciding what size make it about a foot deeper front to back than you first thought. Cabin building time .Let the fun begin.



    Quote Originally Posted by ChugiakTinkerer View Post
    Well, I was planning on building this summer, now I'll be happy just to get the foundation work done and some smaller projects completed. First thing of course will be an outhouse, then a dock so that future float plane trips will be easy peasy to load and unload. For the cabin I'd like to get everything but the sub-floor sheathing done this summer. Then come winter I can finish the floor and start putting up walls and a roof. Probably for the better, this will give me some time to reconsider my final cabin design.

    As to pace of construction, I'm coming to terms with reality and re-aligning my expectations. With the weather being so warm, I think this weekend may be my last opportunity to haul everything on site. So I gotta scramble to make sure I have enough materials, equipment, fuel, and supplies for our planned summer work. And haul gravel like mad.

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    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Here ya go. Do it right.
    Last edited by Daveinthebush; 03-30-2016 at 14:15.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Bend View Post
    Tinkerer & Jack , I have a little word to the wise . One of the most important things that you want to do in building a remote cabin is to build a decent outhouse. If you want a unhappy woman at your cabin just show her a crap of a outhouse. My outhouse is insulated and has t&g on the walls. Also I have a gas light that I turn on and turn it down low and it makes a big difference in comfort level . I have the propane tank mounted high in one corner that way it always stays warm. Another thing that I did not think of when I built my outhouse is that in winter you are dealing with getting a coat off . So when deciding what size make it about a foot deeper front to back than you first thought. Cabin building time .Let the fun begin.
    Big Bend, Great advice. Because I am working on permafrost, I am planning on building an outhouse with the waste material being stored above ground in some sore of a bin that can be hauled off and dumped after every season. I thought about trying to dig down into the permafrost, but I'm worried that disturbing the permafrost will not be beneficial for long term purposes. I have also thought about using some sort of compostable toilet system. But, I do agree, that is a very important consideration, especially for the wife and kids. Thanks for the input. I like the idea about some sore of way to heat the outhouse. I will have to dwell on that for awhile.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daveinthebush View Post
    Attachment 88824

    Here ya go. Do it right.
    Dave in the bush, your attachment didn't show up for me. Not sure why. Anyone else have a hard time seeing it? Maybe try again.

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