This is a review of Brighton bike sheds Slot in shed for 4 bikes .The review will cover the following :
- Ease of assembly
- Design, construction
- Conclusions / Value for money
Before i start the following point must be made .The first most essential part of putting up any shed is the preparation of the ground that it will sit on , this must be absolutely level and unlikely to move . This could be level paving stones , concrete , concrete pillars or in the case of this shed in this review i built a timber frame from treated whitewood (2″x3″ C16) with steel fixings sunk into concrete from 9 points on the frame . This was done the day before . The steel fixings keeping the whole frame raised off the ground to prevent rotting of either the frame or base of the shed over time. Knowing you have an absolute level platform to build up from makes the rest of the job much much easier and your shed will last a lot longer.
Ease of assembly
I have put in an estimated timescale next to each assembly process .
Base and wall panels – 1.5 hours
The side panels and back wall of the 4 bike slot in shed are quite large , so if your slight of build you might want two of you on the job. However i found lifting the panels relatively easy and would therefore say its a one man job start to finish. The instructions are relatively clear and, there are useful “checkpoints” in the instructions to make sure you are building everything correctly (there is nothing worse than getting halfway through a build and discovering you are going to have to take it all apart again !! aaagh……) So some thought has gone into the instruction manual to help the DIY builders. Once i had the base down the back wall panel and side panels went on quickly as well as the door side , which has a useful door packer on it for fitting the doors (see below).There is a steel tubular security bar for locking the bikes to which fitted in nicely with a little persuasion from a hammer.
Rafters,cladding and Guttering – 2.5 hours
The side panels have markings on them for aligning and fitting which are fitted with 65mm decking screws , simple enough but can be a bit tricky if you you don’t have an “F” clamp to hold one end in place(or a second set of hands) while you fix the other .
The cladding was easy enough to fit , it is useful to have a packer to get your spacing correct.Again the instructions were good.
The guttering was simple to put on although, on the shed i put up it was short by about 100mm.
Roof -2.5 hours
Always leave yourself plenty of time to get the roof on , it is the second most important part of the shed , in my case i left it till day two .The felt is of the heavier variety and i had no problems worrying about going through the roof due to its generous rafter size.
Doors and Lock – 1.5 hours
These are of sturdy construction , the hinges are pre -fitted and there is a useful door packer pre – fitted so really all you have to do is put them in place and fix the hinges into the shed cladding.The lock was super quick to fit along with the handle and the holes for the slip bolts.
Design and Construction
The overall construction of the bike shed is sturdy as you would expect from a shed at this price.What is key here is the section size of both the framing for the panels and the roof rafters,which are all generous. There are braces on the side panels which means they should keep there shape over time. Once locked together this shed is of very solid construction.The cladding in this case being the treated Larch should last for many years .Larch is the best out door low cost cladding out there and arguably doesn’t need to be treated so , its going to last .The only draw back on this particular cladding size of larch is the weakening by knots (32mmx21mm).
The door styles and braces are of a generous 100mm x 28mm section size so they are sturdy , squared in construction and had no twist in them so, they fitted flush and easily .The lock has a brass facing with a stainless steel 19mm x 19mm bolt and powder coated internal casing. The slip bolts on the slave door are heavy duty and galvanized . Where the bolt slides over the Slave door there is a metal plate fitted to give extra strength and security to the whole locking system.
The felt is of the heavier variety not usually provided with cheaper sheds.The base is sturdy enough ( i forgot to measure section size of framing for this !) Both the base and the roof sheet material being 12mm OSB 3 , the 3 being the key here which is the outdoor graded OSB so, it is moisture resistant
The internal steel bar and dual height rack are good features internally.The overall internal size is roomie !
conclusions / value for money
Firstly the instructions are good and i liked the “checkpoints” on each section just to make sure you don’t have to take the whole thing down again ! I also liked the fact it is printed on pretty heavy paper , its not going to blow away in the wind. Assembly was easy and made easier by the fact that all the parts are rigid and well built for a shed.The doors were square, sturdy and unlikely to warp over time with generous style and brace sizes however,i think the doors could do with some Hook and eye stays to keep the doors open when accessing the shed , a windy day could see them flapping shut on you.The cladding, treated Larch will last a long time however , i do think these could do with being a little wider to account for weakening by knots in the wood.
Security wise , nobodies getting in through the doors however the larch cladding is a weak point for anyone who wanted to get in , having said that if the bikes are chained to the security bar you have some pretty secure bikes . i would choose a different cladding if bike theft is a theme in your local area. (Brighton bike sheds has many cladding options)
Although the roof beams are of a good size i think the 65mm screws recommended and provided for fitting are a little small , i also think for the money the way the beams are fixed (recommended in instructions) could be improved.
As far as value for moneys goes i think this shed is going to last 2 to 3 times longer than some cheaper versions, coupled with that, no maintenance over its life time is much more likely.Not having to treat it every two years is another win, with good quality parts that are unlikely to fail.Its very generous in size , plenty of room for the bikes and accessing them is easy .The shed looks good and will last well if it is installed properly .
I hope this blog has been useful to you , you can watch a time lapse (in 2 sections) on my instagram feed , you can find the link below. You can also watch them on my you tube channel link also below.