A couple weeks ago I posted an alternative concept for a tiny house built from shipping pallets that simply used half pallets (24″ by 40″) as building blocks to form walls. I chose 24-inch walls for that first post because they can be cut from 2-way and 4-way pallets without any waste. It also seemed like a very stable wall thickness requiring little or no additional structure. But 24-inch thick walls also seems like incredible overkill so I went back to the drawing board and came up with an alternative that still uses the pallets fairly efficiently.
As you can see the trouble with building this way when using 4-way pallets is that the forklift fork notches get in the way. In my scavenging I’ve found that 4-way pallets are much more common too. I chose 8″ walls because that’s the approximate distance from the corner of a pallet top the notch. This seems like the most efficient size when cutting into either type pallet.
In this example there are 19 courses of pallet blocks with 14 blocks per course for a total of 266 blocks. Window and door openings would reduce this number so for fun lets just say you’d need 240 blocks. If you had 2-way pallets this would mean you could build these walls with only 40 pallets. If all you could find were 4-way pallets you’d need 80 pallets.
I’m really starting to think that a concrete slab, or similar masonry floor, would be best especially with south facing windows. The 8-inch wall cavity would be stuffed or sprayed full of insulation and could provide a lot of protection from the elements. The roof should be conventionally framed to provide a safe roof overhead. I still imagine the best wall treatment inside and out would be some kind of stucco since it would give character to the imperfections inevitable with pallets.
I’m very tempted to try this idea. What do you think?