My experience building a simple shed – with photos
As I’ve stated in my previous posts about selecting a shed and building a shed foundation, I wound up buying the Keter Bellevue shed at Costco. I figured I would post some of my pictures during various phases of assembly along with my comments from what I recall during the assembly process.
First off, I did the entire assembly myself, aside from having Mrs. F help with the window. I’m not sure how much easier it would be with two people, but the only things I struggled with were putting the initial frame of the roof on top and then sliding in the roof panels.
Starting out, I laid out the floor of the shed, which comes in 4 pieces that fit together a bit like a jigsaw puzzle. It did have a bit of a hard time doing this by myself and I would imagine this is a step that would be much easier with a second person. Whenever I would try to push on one side, the other side would slide loose. I was able to do it alone, but it would have looked funny to someone watching me as it took several attempts to get them to fit together.
After I got these pieces fit together, then I started adding the walls working from the front left side around in a clockwise fashion. The walls went together very easily. At times, they would sway apart a little bit from the wind and possibly from not being 100% level (but pretty close), but the walls get held together firmly during later steps when adding the roof.
From the picture on the left, you can see that one of the wall pieces has a window. You can choose which side of the shed to place the window and whether you want it towards the front or the back. Each wall is made up of two panels which are vinyl but seem to be re-inforced with metal. I didn’t find them too be too flimsy, yet they were light enough for me to easily carry around and set-up. They slide into the flooring and then fasten together with center supports and corner supports. Many of the pieces snap into place and then are further supported with screws. The directions are very easy to follow and the pieces were all well marked.
This picture on the right shows how the shed looks after framing the three walls and then the two mini-walls on the front. The doors will go between the mini-walls, but they don’t go on until after the roof is installed.
The front and back roof supports go on next.
The next step was a challenge to do alone because the roof part is a bit heavy, especially to hold over your head. It actually went on in the proper place with only a few tries, but I I may not have had as much luck if it weren’t for the foundation being made very level before I started. To the right is a picture from the inside, and below is a picture from the oustide (as I know you couldn’t figure out by looking).
The next step after getting the roof frame done was one of the more difficult parts for me. You slide in the roof panels into the roof frame. There are four panels. Two slide in from the front, and two slide in from the back. This part may be easier with two people, although I’m not sure how you’d do it unless you both have step stools or a step stool and a ladder. I basically balanced it on my head while sliding it into the grooves on the frame. It wasn’t pretty, but it did work. This is one step where you need space behind the shed to stand on a step stool or ladder. My step stool just fit between the foundation and the fence behind it. I’m glad that the roof panel didn’t fall off my head into the neighbors yard, although that can’t be much more embarassing than how I must have looked balancing them on my head.
Interestingly, the hard part was NOT getting the panels into the proper groove. The hard part was pushing the panels all the way in. I was able to pull them part of the way from inside the shed (having to move the step stool inside). Getting the last inch or so into the proper place was hard and I had to use a bit of force hitting the end with my palms pretty forcefully. Eventually, the pieces did go all the way into place.
After finishing the roof, the next step was to install the doors. The doors were very easy to install, but the instructions were not at all helpful when it comes to the issue of the doors not lining up properly. I had heard before starting that if the foundation is not level, the doors will not line up properly. I was very careful to try to get the foundation as level as possible. Nonetheless, the doors did not line up perfectly. They were close enough that it is barely noticeable in this photo, and close enough that the sliding latch goes through with only a little jiggling.
However, the instructions clearly say you should have the doors level. The picture clearly shows the doors should be level and not uneven and then they add the helpful text in all languages “Check the doors to make sure they are level at the top.” They don’t give any suggestions on what to do if the doors are not level. They don’t even offer the suggestion that the foundation may not be level. Luckily for me, the doors function, even though not perfectly level.
The next step was to put in a ton of screws everywhere. This was actually the only part I couldn’t completely do. There were two screws on the roof that I wasn’t able to reach with my step stool, and I’m not sure I have room in the back for a ladder unless I go into the neighbors yard and lean a ladder onto the shed from there. I’m not even sure that would work. I’m chancing it and leaving those screws out. What’s the worst that can happen? The roof blows off? I doubt it with all of the other screws. At least I sure hope not.
The last step was putting in the window. It was simple to do and Mrs. F helped me on this final step.
So there you have it – the steps needed to put the shed together along with some of my own pretty pictures. The instructions are very clearly marked and it was very nicely designed. I’m very happy with the shed and it functions great for our needs. We currently have a snow blower, a lawnmower, a fertilizer spreader (sitting on top of the snowblower though), four bicycles, four sets of golf clubs, and a gas container.
The shed does have an option for attaching a rain barrel to the roof. I didn’t choose that option so I can’t comment.
Overall – the shed is everything I wanted and the price is competitive (I paid $599) with other similar sized sheds. It is nice with the skylights and the windows, with nice looks and seems to have solid construction. The instructions were clear and the design was straightforward to build. I give it 5/5 stars. If you can manage to get it on clearance at the end of the season, then you’ve really gotten a great deal.