Using Repurposed Cedar Fencing
a school bus to tiny house conversion story
Recently, Jeremiah’s step-dad, Norm, offered to let us use any wood we could find in the shed at the back of his property. In the shed, we found a pile of old cedar fencing, and I (Alana) suggested that we try repurposing it to see if it might be something we could use for our bathroom walls. You see, we’ve been planning for a long time to use cedar in our bathroom because we want it to look like a Finnish sauna. Finnish sauna’s are wonderful, and everyone in Finland has one. (We met a lot of Fins when we lived in Israel). Plus cedar smells amazing, but nice cedar is expensive. So, finding a whole pile of wood that we could potentially repurpose for this project was a gold mine.
We weren’t sure how it would go. It was quite possible that the wood would be unusable, that we just wouldn’t be able to get it to look the way we’d hoped, but after quite a bit of work on Jeremiah’s part, the cedar looks good as new. The process of repurposing cedar fencing goes as follows: plane the fence, sand the fence once and twice, cut of the ends of the fence, and then cut the fence down the middle to make two pieces the appropriate size. And, voila, beautiful cedar for our wall.
Jeremiah was happy that the cedar wasn’t too red, that it had a browner look, and I was happy that it smelled like cedar. Poor Jeremiah, though, heaps of cedar saw dust piled up in the garage during the project and he had it all over his clothes. . . It was a messy job, but we both think it’s worth it. Though, after getting pretty far into the project we learned that old cedar hides mold spores that cause respiratory problems if not sealed properly, but thankfully, we’ve always planned on sealing it; and it should not be a problem for us.
We’ve finished the part of the bathroom wall that doesn’t involve plumbing work, and we’ll finish the rest of the project once we finish plumbing. Plumbing. . . is the last major project we need to finish before we begin the process of painting and finishing the wood in the bus. That is insanely exciting.
Thanks for following along with us.