June 7, 2012

Cabin Cabinetry (HA!) and Protecting the Wood

With the galley completed and the wiring run, it was time to start finishing out the cabin with cabinetry and trim.  We started by nailing the back panel on the galley wall to cover up the insulation and wiring for the auxiliary ports.  After doing this, Darrell added one of the small brackets he used on the counter to secure the back wall to the ceiling.  This added some strength to the wall and wouldn't really be seen since it would eventually be inside a cabinet.

The inside cabinet was made in the same way we did the shelving and cabinets in the galley.  We started by adding a shelf made from 1x8 pine to form the bottom of the cabinet.  We saved the diagram I did when measuring up the back and side walls so we knew where the horizontal framing members were to screw into.  This made it easy to locate and attach the shelf with pocket screws.

Since this cabinet will have two shelves, we next added vertical supports on either side of the shelf from the standard 1x2 pine.  These were screwed directly into the sidewalls.  The second shelf was added and attached with pocket screws.

Additional vertical supports were added on either side going up to the ceiling as well as well as in the middle of the shelf.  These middle supports will also be were we attach the frame and doors.

With the cabinet 'frame' done, Darrell used the miter box again to cut out a face frame with the 3/8"x2" pine strips.  I then measured and cut out the doors from the 1/2" birch veneer plywood.  Everything was lined up and installed with self closing hinges and schnazy handles.

Now that all of the all of the cabinetry was completed, it was time to tung oil the entire interior.  We decided to use this instead of polyurethane for a couple of reasons.  The tung oil is a natural product that will help protect the wood and resist water.  Though it won't create the harder, wipeable finish that poly would, it will achieve a similar result while keeping a more natural finish.  After applying two coats, the color of the wood darkened a bit and the grain really popped!  It looks great!

We did the same tung oil treatment to the galley too, applying the oil on all of the walls, floor and cabinets.  The Okoume really darkened, but looks beautiful against the lighter cabinets and dark counter.  The contrast is stunning!  Finish work is almost done!


  1. Just saw your teardrop on Tiny House Blog, I made a comment there about a folding picnic table. That reminded me, I have the plans for that thing and I'm never going to build one. If you guys want the plans they're yours, I can mail them to you. It's similar to this http://picnicatascot.com/products.php?product_id=208 but all wood. If you want it you can send me a message by replying to the message from alice h on the Tiny House Blog.

  2. Have you figured out how to handle the sink drain yet?

    1. I knew we forgot to mention something! We'll add that in one of the next posts but what we ended up doing was adapting the drain to a garden hose connection. We figured we'd go low-tech and add a length of coiled garden hose under the sink and pull it out and dump onto the ground when we need to drain the sink. Since it is a hand pump for the faucet we'll be conserving water and there won't be that much to drain. The use of biodegradable soap is a must as well!

      Thanks for the comment!

    2. camp suds is a great biodegradable soap as it is endorsed by the boy scouts of america

  3. I surfed over from THB and I'm enjoying your story. My husband and I toyed with the idea of building a teardrop - I love the idea of them - but since we have two little kids, we ultimately decided a pop-up camper was more practical for our camping needs. I keep saying maybe in 30 + years when we retire?? Cheers to the adventure ... can't wait to read more.