Monday, September 22, 2008

Comfortable Living in a Nomadic Home

This blog has shifted to a new web site called Nomadic Home. Click here to see it.

There are a number of prerequisites that determine whether or not a nomadic home will be practical and comfortable to live in. The internal design and layout, along with adequate ventilation is crucial, not only for a nomadic home to be workable, but also to be a healthy place to live. There is a big difference between a nomadic home that is suitable for weekends and short holidays and one that is used for permanent living.

The biggest difference between a mobile home, bus, boat etc.. that is designed for weekends and short holidays and those that are designed for permanent living, is the number of people that they try to accommodate. For short stays the designers try to squeeze as many people in as possible, which limits the available space for other amenities, such as bathroom, kitchen and storage.

Most people wouldn't put up with a miniature kitchen or bathroom in a house, so why would a nomadic home be comfortable with a miniature kitchen and bathroom? The easiest way to ensure there is enough room for decent sized amenities is to make sure that there is no more sleeping accommodation, than there are permanent residents. Don't try to include accommodation for guests, they can sleep on the floor if necessary.

Ventilation is the other aspect which is invariably inadequate. Good ventilation is essential to keep humidity and mold from becoming a problem. It also helps in keeping warm and cosy. Just having people breathing in such a small space as the typical nomadic home will introduce a huge amount of moisture to the air, as will using gas or liquid fueled stoves. Carbon monoxide build up from stoves, lamps, or refrigeration that use a flame will be lethal if there is not enough ventilation, something that is often overlooked.

In a later post I will show the floor plan for a holiday caravan that I have designed for a couple with standing headroom for someone up to about six feet tall. It has a full queen size bed; kitchen, with as much usable space and functionality as an average house kitchen; separate toilet and shower, with two doors between the toilet and kitchen. The shower stall is a bit smaller than a house shower, but still bigger than most commercial motorhome or boat showers. It also has dining seating for six people, if you felt the need to entertain. with a total interior height from floor to ceiling of 1.91 metres (6'3") and outside floor dimensions of 3.64 metres (12') x 2.04 metres (6'8").

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