350 Square Foot Steel-Clad Cabin for The Zombie Apocalypse

“The overall design responds to the owner’s desire for a compact, low-maintenance, virtually indestructible building to house himself and his wife during fishing expeditions. Composed of two levels, the cabin’s entry, dining and kitchen areas are located on the lower floor while a sleeping loft with minimal shelving hovers above. A cantilevered steel deck extends from the lower level, providing unimpeded views of the river.” – Olson Kundig Architects.

Photos by Benjamin Benschneider.

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10 thoughts on “350 Square Foot Steel-Clad Cabin for The Zombie Apocalypse

      • Renaissance Ronin says:

        I’m equally concerned with the ability of that “sliding door” to withstand winds. Can you imagine that shearing itself off in wind gusts and taking all of your windows with it? Can you say; “Holy Home Owners Insurance, Batman?” (And not that sissy Ben Afleck Batman, either… I’m talking that brooding “Dark Night” cat…) LOL!

        What if you set your cabin up off the ground on sonotube pilings and then let that panel DROP down into your “foundation”? Something as simple as a Harbor Freight Truck Winch and a solar panel/battery would raise and lower it with a remote. Easy peasy! 🙂

    • Steve says:

      I would think that a hinged door would have been a better option. That one steel beam is unlikely to carry a very high wind load.

  1. Chuck Davis says:

    Maybe the “sail” could be hinged in some way, so that it could fold back against the side of the cabin. No?

  2. Steve says:

    To be clear: a double hinge (top and middle), with a counter-weighted cable attached to lift it up so it stores perpendicular to the front windows.

  3. mallthus says:

    If you look at the way the door is hung, you’ll note that it’s not tracked at the bottom. Because of the way the sliding mechanism works at the top, the door will swing in its track in lighter winds. Should the owner fail close the door in a higher wind situation, it would, more than likely, jump off its track before bending or breaking the support beam.

    Closed, it would be a none issue.

    Also, knowing the area, high wind loads would be uncommon outside of storm conditions. Given that the cabin is built in a flood zone (hence the elevated design), an owner would be wise to batten down the hatches and leave before any wind loading event was likely to occur.

    Just my 2¢…

  4. Thomas says:

    I see the armchair architects are fascinated with the door and wind loads. 🙂
    It’s an architectural feature, cheap and simple. I’d venture the architect figured the wind load, and have no doubt the local municipality reviewed it as well because they’re always interested in allowing unsafe buildings, right?
    It’s a steel framed door, attached to a steel I-Beam with barn door hardware, the only way its simpler is not having a door. Lowering the door into the foundation using a truck winch, solar panel and a battery is “easy peasy”? Double hinges and counterweights? “Shear” and take out all the windows? Come on!

  5. D. Staats says:

    I really like the idea. I would try to lower the front door like a draw-bridge, then you would have your front porch also. Just the design I would have tried. It also seems like a lot of wasted space in there. They could have extended the whole second floor and made a lot more room. I still like this.

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