We FINALLY Finished the RV Carport!

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I can’t quite believe it myself, but the RV Carport is complete. Just to remind everyone, we started trying to build the RV carport last October!  Since then, we’ve had engineering problems, we’ve had permitting problems, and then we had engineering problems again.  But that’s finally all behind us.  It’s late August now. That’s 11 months to build a simple, open structure. Here it is:

RV Carport 1

The pavement underneath is 10 feet wide. The carport is about 30 feet long, and there’s about 11 feet of height underneath. That won’t park a big class A, but we’re small RV people, and it should fit at least the next couple RVs we might have.

I have to admit, I like the wall on the west side now. I didn’t want it at first, but it provides a whole lot of extra protection for the RV. In the end, the contractor completed the wall; except for the fiber cement siding. I put that up myself, and the paint went on this week. Between the paint we used, and the fiber cement, that structure should be good for at least 30 years or so.

Have a look at the gap under the west wall. It’s actually about four inches off the ground. That means it won’t rot out from ground contact, and water will run off unimpeded.

RV Carport Elevated Wall

And the flying buttresses are in. It doesn’t look anything like the ornate cathedral I had feared, and they actually have that cool timber-framing look to them. I like the contrast of the black hardware.

RV Carport Hardware

I will say that driving under the carport off the curved driveway can be… challenging. Well, no. Driving in is easy. Backing out… that’s challenging. I’ve done it a few times now with no damage to either carport or RV. Hopefully that trend continues.

Otters actually have nothing to do with the carport. I just like otters.

There’s no landscaping around the carport and driveway yet. I suppose that’s next. But first, I want to get the level of the dirt an inch or so below the driveway and post bottoms. I’ll be looking for neighborhood teens with shovels to help with that one, because that’s a lot of dirt to move around. But once that’s done, it should be a winter of dry parking for Das Bus.

RV Carport FinalI won’t tell you how much it finally wound up costing, because adding it all up would make me really depressed.

So, what do you think?  Interested to hear your thoughts.

James is a former rocket scientist, a USA Cycling coach, and lifelong fitness buff. When he's not driving the RV, or modifying the RV (or - that one time - doing both at once), you can find him racing bicycles, or building furniture, or making music. In his spare time, he works for a large IT company.

    7 thoughts on “We FINALLY Finished the RV Carport!

    1. Ross Broughton

      way cool James! I want that for our sprinter. One thing, don’t let those otters dig under your supports. My aunt had an otter family move in to her basement on Bowen Island BC. They dig like gophers and smell like fish. Industrious, cute family-oriented tho (like Mormons, except I think these ones drank coffee. Must have.). We convinced them to leave after the babies grew up and they left for a day of fishing, by boarding up the entrance and putting an underground wire barrier around the house so they couldn’t dig another way in. Big job. I think they went down the block instead. No kidding. Any sea otters in Utah?

      1. James - Post author

        I’m sort of jealous after reading your story. Otters in the basement? How cool!
        Never considered the smell before though…
        The only otters we have around here are in the aquarium, where they’re quite popular.
        As far as the carport goes, “otter sabotage” was not one of my design criteria, so I’ll have to hope for the best. 🙂

    2. jjva

      Once decades ago, I used to renovate very old houses. I learned from my brother the 2 rule. Expect it to cost twice what you hoped for, that it will take twice an long to finish, and that you will be 1/2 as happy as you had expected. Are you sure you don’t want to tell us? A lot of us have been down that path and won’t be surprised.

      1. James - Post author

        Well, offhand, it did take twice as long and cost about twice as much. I haven’t actually added up all the change orders and add-ons. But twice as much seems about right.
        The good news is, I’m more than half as happy as I expected to be. So I guess I’m coming out ahead!

    3. Kip

      I like the anchor supports. The paint color and those black braces shows me that some serious thought went into this construction. Looks like a construction engineer lives here. Your neighbors are fortunate you are such a perfectionist to detail. I don’t think this carport will blow away or collapse easily. It will probably out last us all.

      Good luck finding those teens with a desire to make pocket change.You must be joking about those helpful kids! Those days are gone.
      I still shovel snow in my own driveway/sidewalk in Indiana every winter.
      Those teens are scarce around here. No help in sight and yet I would gladly pay. I grew up cutting grass, two paper routes and then shoveling snow each year. Yikes! I am a Dodo bird.

      Not knowing how much dirt you are moving I always start out using a cheap tarp. Then I go to a wheelbarrow. A wheelbarrow can be awkward. I always have hand blisters and a sore back after using a bouncy wheelbarrow.
      Tell that teen to wear gloves and also hustle without loosing that fill dirt.
      Yup! He better be a strong kid.

      Since you have a truck, a Tool Rental location can make a lot of sense.
      A rental Bobcat is fun/fast earth mover.
      Just don’t hit your fancy carport!

      1. James - Post author

        Having only minimal experience piloting an earth mover, I’d be terrified that I would hit the carport!
        You’re probably right about the teens. Although, living in Salt Lake City, there still may be some around. I’ll probably wind up either doing it myself, or including it with some other work I hire out to a landscaper.
        I’m glad you like the carport. I hope you’re right about it lasting! Time will tell…


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