I want to introduce you to a good friend of mine
I got know Steve about 20 years ago. Steve has embraced the authentic sauna experience at my island cabin sauna “up north” through dozens of “boys weekends.” Some of the cabin visits have been in winter. Yet, most often we go to my cabin in the fall when we close up, and in the spring when we open up. Steve has always been a great help and supporter of that process. Cabin maintenance can be a pain in the neck, but with a guy like Steve to boss us around, the work gets done. And we have a lot of fun.
An amateur sauna builder
This Sauna Talk episode is significant for me because it allows me to share with you first hand, the nuances of sauna building. For some time now, I have wanted to document the nuts and bolts of building your own sauna from the casual builder/home owner perspective. This documentation is independent of and in addition to my e-book Sauna Build, from Start to Finnish.
In this episode of Sauna Talk, you will learn firsthand what it takes for an amateur builder to undertake the construction of their own authentic backyard sauna. You will hear all about the lifestyle change for Steve and his wife, since completing the sauna, on Thanksgiving. I did a little math: Steve and his wife Amy (and their kids when they’re in town) have enjoyed their backyard sauna 95 out of the last 100 days.
The shed build
You will learn more about the shed build concept. We have to keep in mind that though building a sauna from the ground up can be straightforward, building a shed requires extra ladders and tools. We need extra hands and we need strong ankles to work on a roof. We discuss the concept of hiring a shed company to shell up a backyard shed. This can be a great way to jumpstart your sauna build.
We talk about how much does a sauna cost? Spoiler alert: $7,600. This total includes hiring the shed company. It is worth listening through this episode as we detail the individual costs of building your own sauna.
“You can always use wider trim”
Additionally, you will get a flavor of Steve’s sauna building philosophy. Steve’s focus was to get the Sauna completed and functioning. Steve was not so concerned about measurements to the 16th or eighth of an inch. “If you screw up, you can always make wider trim.” I commend him for that.
You will learn some tips on which he and I have collaborated. For example: I often use cedar fence paneling to make my own trim. Cedar fencing is a wonderful, inexpensive material. Steve has taken cedar fence paneling to a (cough) wider level. Though not recommended so much for the hot room, in Steve’s changing room cedar fence paneling looks awesome on the wall.
A surprise guest
Additionally, we hear from Steve’s wife Amy, as a surprise guest to Sauna Talk. Like many of us, Amy did not grow up with sauna. She had dabbled a bit with sauna action at the health club. But now, their own backyard authentic sauna has been a formative change to Amy’s life and well-being.
I enjoyed visiting with Steve and Amy. I am pleased to share with you how much they have been appreciating their own authentic sauna experience.