Two days ago Crystal was visiting a friend in Clayton, NC while I was working in Raleigh. Somewhere along HWY 70W she passed Camptown RV and spotted what looked to her like the closest thing to a Tiny House we have ever seen. Indeed it had the look and was even built on a towable trailer. What she saw though was the Westchester Field & Stream park model.
At a length of 39’6″ and measuring just 13’6″ high, Crystal thought it was something I had to see too if for nothing more than to get an idea of just how big or not so big our Tiny House could be.
So yesterday we cruised over to Camptown meeting up with Jim Barnwell who gave us a tour of the house and pointed out a lot of the things we had questioned through the past year.
Granted the Westchester is not exactly built with sustainability in mind and with its central heat/air unit, extraneous lighting fixtures, large fridge, and media/surround sound system, more than likely leaves quite a carbon footprint even for its size, it is a beautiful unit and has an innovative roofline that allows for a ton of sleeping loft space as well as a bathroom, a bedroom, and even stairs!
The interior of the cabin is accented by skipped peeled pine for a rustic Adirondack look. With the solid pine cabinet doors, dovetail drawers and a dining room table and chairs made of pine timbers even the most avid sportsmen will enjoy the rustic feel and quality construction of this park cabin home.
The living room is full of extra features which include a swivel/rocker/recliner, 72″ sofa with hide-a-bed, coffee table and two end tables. The panoramic windows will bring the outdoor scenery inside. Above the windows you will find a clever shelf trimmed out in skipped peeled pine. A large area rug is included in the Westchester living room.
The master bedroom features a residential 60″ x 80″ box spring and mattress with designer bedspread and pillows. There are two wardrobes and a chest of drawer finished in natural pine located opposite of the bed.
The Westchester has a spacious, open floor plan. Privacy isn’t a problem though – simply close the partition wall, hidden behind the fireplace, to divide the living area from the kitchen. Open the Hide-a-bed sofa and you’ve got an extra bedroom for guests.
The bathroom is accented with oil rubbed fixtures, designer shower curtain and includes a large one piece shower and tub with surround.
The other problem was that at almost 40 feet long it is twice the length of what we will be building. So when looking at the pictures you may as well rip the blueprints in half and see what you have left. It is also 10ft. across which is 2ft. wide than what we will have. How do we know?
Well, we can only go by the US regulations. The truth is tiny houses exist in a grey area between traditional houses and travel trailers.
Tiny Houses are not entirely without limits though. If you are hoping to travel with your house or even move it to a permanent location after your build (as we intend to do) and don’t want to hassle with a special permit (which we most certainly don’t) then we must build a maximum size of 13.5-feet tall, 8.5-feet wide, and 40-feet long – 65-feet maximum including the tow vehicle. The Westchester would need a pole car in front of it and a truck like a PowerStroke Diesel or a 3500 to tow it.
All those elements aside though we came away with a lot of encouragement about Tiny House and where we could do without and what we hadn’t yet figured in. We even walked away with a great diagram of construction standards and material inclusions.
So as I prepare for my weekend digital sabbatical I am yet again encouraged about the goal we have set for minimal living and our own Tiny House.