Canadian Renegade

Renegade: an individual who rejects lawful or conventional behavior

Category: Tiny House (page 1 of 5)

Natural Rubber Mattress Review

We had a request for a video review of our natural organic rubber mattress and, with this week being so hectic, we thought now would be a good time to do it. Our mattress is comfortable, non-toxic and fairly thin, which helps maximize the head room in our tiny house loft.

The mattress was rolled up like a giant sausage when we picked it up from the store!

It is made from natural rubber and the outer shell is wool and organic cotton. Here are the attributes from the Sleeptek website.

Overall, we are happy with the mattress in the year we have been using it. We bought a medium firmness which is just a touch too soft for me but Aimee finds the level of firmness really comfortable.

Dish Drying Racks

We had a request to know more about the dish drying racks in our kitchen and I thought it was a great idea for a short post.

The racks are from Ikea and can be mounted on the wall, set on a counter or in  a sink. If you are interested, the product name is Fintorp and they are $16.99 CAD each.

We positioned our drying racks over the sink to keep the counter space free and so that any stray drips not caught by the trays would fall into the sink.

The pine paneling wasn’t thick enough to support the racks long term so we added a thicker pine backing board to the studs and secured the racks to that instead.

The kitchen ceiling is low so we have shelving over the counters instead of cupboards. We put our dishes on the shelf next to the drying rack so putting dishes away would be less work.

Overall the racks work great but our one complaint is that the drip trays are galvanized steel and still rust on the inside. We are not sure why they didn’t just make plastic drip trays.

At least the sides haven’t corroded too badly yet.

Hobbit Stove Review

As you know, we have been living in the tiny house for a little over a year now. We thought it would be a good time to do a review of The Hobbit Stove from Salamader Stoves. We were very excited when it came in the mail from the UK and it did not disappoint.

Still in the crate shortly after arriving.

The stove came with a variety of accessories; a small brush and dust pan, a stove top thermometer, an oven mitt, some fire starters and a tool to open and close the door when the handles have become too hot.

The stove top thermometer provides temperature and also has a handy guide to make sure the stove is running in the best temperature range.

The Hobbit compared to the wood burning stove in the house we used to rent.

We have several other posts that cover the installation and operation of the hobbit stove:

One thing we should mention, even though it has been covered previously, is that all wood stoves should have fresh air intakes located nearby. Our air intake has a cold air trap built into it and can be shut by sliding the grate closed when the stove is not in use.  This vent also does double duty for the gas range. We usually leave it open all the time unless a cold breeze is blowing directly into it and neither stove is in use.

Fresh air intake located between the Hobbit Stove and gas range.




Living in a Tiny House: A Year in Review

Without a shadow of a doubt, there are some incredibly innovative and well designed tiny houses being built around the globe. We often find ourselves watching videos of these beautifully crafted and cozy tiny houses from our own humble abode.  We also find ourselves pausing from time to time to ponder is that really practical? Sometimes the answer is an obvious no, and other times the answer is it depends on your lifestyle, or how you’re using that tiny home. Some tiny houses appear to completely lack storage solutions, food prep areas, or basic necessities. But all of these choices could make sense if you’re on the move, you enjoy minimalist living, you live in an urban area where food is readily available, or other lifestyle factors. What these decisions really boil down to is what works for the home owner. This is also the most beautiful part of tiny living – the myriad of creative solutions waiting to be discovered!

Even so, when we see a tiny house that doesn’t make sense to us, we itch for that year-in-review episode to see if the design really was effective or if they would make changes. With that in mind, we decided to do our own year in review. We’ve been in our quaint mini mansion for a year now, and we’ve experienced it in all four Canadian seasons. We really wanted to be honest about what worked well and what didn’t. Would we make different decisions if we had to do it all over again? Probably. Do we regret building and living in a tiny house? Not at all! Take a look at what we discovered.

A Complete Review of the Splendide 2100XC – Washer/Dryer Combo
Fixing the Splendide 2100XC – Washer/Dryer Combo

A special thank you to Sustainable Me for granting us access to additional footage of our tiny house. See more about the Sustainable Me project here:

Splendide 2100XC Full Review

After using the Splendide 2100XC for a full year we give our opinion on the performance of this Washer/Dryer Combo and some helpful tips to getting the most out of it. Is it the best choice for a tiny house or RV?

The one main issue we had with this machine was when the internal exhaust tube became clogged with lint. The issue wasn’t too hard to fix and if it happens again we will be able to remedy it lot easier the second time now that we know what to do. The lint clog may be preventable with a different exhaust vent on the outer wall. We believe the reason for the backup was a combination of  condensation and cold temperatures causing the exhaust flap to stick shut. Other than that, we haven’t really had any major problems with the 2100XC. Here you can watch me Fixing the Splendide Washer/Dryer Combo.

For a machine that is the size of a dishwasher it performs quite well and is fairly easy on our water use at 9-16 gallons per wash. It also only uses 11 Amps 120AC power. We even considered putting it under the counter in the kitchen for awhile but decided we had more space to spare in the bathroom and having dirty undies in the kitchen was a bit weird.

The final verdict is that the Splendide 2100XC performs quite well for it’s price and size, and since it was made for RV use you don’t have to worry about it breaking as you drive down the road. We give it a B+ rating (and I’m stingy on giving high ratings, even on my wife’s cooking!)

Closet Curtain Install

I was originally going to install a double door to the closet in our tiny house but the more I thought about it the more a curtain made sense. I do a step by step walk through of the install.

Salvaged Wood Pantry Part 2

In this video, I talk a little bit more about the construction of our tiny house pantry and briefly go through the groceries you’ll find in there. I also take a quick look at our bathroom shelves which were built using the same salvaged wood and construction methods.


Previous pantry video.

Fixing Splendide Washer/Dryer Combo

We have been fairly happy with our Splendide washer/dryer combo and were even planning on doing a full review but decided to put that off until we were able to troubleshoot some issues we had come across. We had noticed that the dry times seemed to be taking longer than usual which made us suspect a possible lint blockage. Additionally, over the past week or two it has been shutting itself off and giving diagnostic codes during the dry cycles. We suspect that the lint blockage was caused by the type of exhaust flap we installed to keep the cold winter air from creeping into the house. Once we change the flap, we’ll be sure to follow up on whether or not the issue was completely resolved.

**Update** The washer/dryer does seem to be working normally now.

Pantry Nightmare! (Pantry Part 1)

This video was taken part way through building our custom pantry. I built the pantry from the free cedar boards that you can watch me planing in the last video. Stay tuned for our follow up video where we’ll show you the final product.

Follow up video.

Planing Free Wood for the Tiny House

I managed to score some free cedar boards for the tiny house but they were a bit too rough to use as is. I discuss why I chose to buy a planer and show it in action!

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