The Self Build Self Help Site Handling Materials
Handling Materials

The shear number and volume of different materials involved in a self build mean that handling amd storing presents its own problems and care must be taken. Get this wrong and there will be excessive handling, material could be spoiled, they can represent a hazard and, of course, handling heavy/bulky material can cause physical injury.

Beware the heavy stuff

First of all, it seems impossible not to have to move the heavy stuff from one place to another. Building a house is a very dynamic process and planned activites change and, all of a sudden, the packs of blocks that you thought you had stacked in the right place, are now in the way of something else - especially if you don't spend some time thinking about where to stack them before the delivery lorry arrives. Yes, get blocks delivered onto the slab but not on, or near the line of internal walls, or in the way if you need to measure across the diagonals!

Stacking sheet materials

There is not much more heavier and bulkier than sheets of plasterboard, especially dense plasterboard used for sound proofing. These, and sheets of floorboarding, must be stored inside, flat, and kept off the ground if there is a chance of water ingress - such as if the windows are not in yet. Cut a few strips of batten or other items of timber and use these, spaced apart, to keep the plasterboard off the floor. Stack the sheets neatly - align the boards well on top of each other so that the corners do not get knocked and broken. Do not stack them upright - they will tend to bend.

Getting material onto the first floor

Getting sheets of plasterboard and floorboarding onto the first floor can be tricky and very hard work. It is worth leaving one wide window out on the first floor and getting them lofted onto the loading bay on the second lift and then in through the opening. The window can be protected with a temporary window to keep rain out.

If this is not possible then at least get the sheets up through the stairwell before the stairs are put in.