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  1. #1
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    Apr 2000
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    Default Sad old barn

    I've got an 8-stall horse barn on my property which is starting to fall apart. It's framed with PT lumber, insulated in some spots, and covered with sheet metal and some translucent plastic on the roof. There is a hay loft also. I don't have any use for the barn right now, but someday I might get some animals. The frame is still perfectly usable.

    How do you refurbish a sheetmetal building? There are many windows and doors cut into mine, and the sheet metal is all faded and worn. I could conceivably wrap it with vinyl siding, or add a new layer of sheetmetal, or maybe I should replace the old sheetmetal... or maybe I should just take my medicine and tear the whole thing down now. Any thoughts?



  2. #2
    Super Member _RaT_'s Avatar
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    Northern CA.
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    none, nothing, nada

    Default Re: Sad old barn

    I know the dilema your in. Lumber right now is a tough buy. Your paying more and most all of its from small growth. The result is inferior lumber in terms of stability. If the layout for the barn is acceptable and there is no sign of rot, even in PT, the foundation sound, then I would have no problem rebuilding from what you have. The tin in my opinion should go. Working with the old stuff sometimes turns into a "I shoulda just done it right the first time" attitude down the road. It will open up a host of new siding options for you and eliminate a host of problems. It will also allow you to remove or add doors/windows where you want them. Since your in WA, I should think that cedar materials are an option. If going with vinyl, you will probably need to throw up 1/2" plywood for shear and backing. If I were building a new barn, shop etc today, concrete block would be my first choice. Never rots, easy to wash down, and very stable. I built 2 homes north of Camden, Maine. Learned many things about building for that climate. Foundations being the biggest difference. Also found out that they have a huge variety of bugs. Flys that bite like ****, caterpillars that look like their wearing feathers on their back, rains a little just about every day and also ran into some very nice people. Hope it works out well for you, Rat...


  3. #3
    Member
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    Apr 2000
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    Default Re: Sad old barn

    You're probably right, who knows what would go wrong if I just covered up this damp insulation and tin with good siding. I hope the barn holds up until I get the money to fix it--and at the rate I'm going that could be a long time .

    Are you saying that cement block could work for me? The frame is pretty sturdy, but I don't know if it was built to hold up tons and tons of cement block. Anyway, what's the procedure for building cement block walls, starting from a bare frame?

    Speaking of old timber, I know what you mean. I will never get a cedar shake roof again, I think the cedar available now just isn't adequate. I guess my shop is at least 40 years old, and it has a main beam in it that's about 8"x24"x30'. I can't imagine how much that board would cost now. I hear that a real old, straight black walnut will sell for many thousands of dollars.


  4. #4

    Join Date
    Apr 2000
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    230
    Location
    East of Seattle, Washington
    Tractor
    64 MF Utility 35 retired to parts pile.

    Default Re: Sad old barn

    Hello Fall City!!!

    We too have an oldie and moldie. If you know how Seattle gets the water from the Cascades, you'll know the old wood (stave stock with a slight tounge and groove wrapped with round metal rod, old growth that has enough growth rings to it you need glasses to count them) was replaced and the guy who built this barn used it everywhere. Siding, rafters and cross ties. It is listing "Too Many" degree's to the south and if left alone, will fall accross the south line. He framed it wrong and I came along to late. This IS one of those that would be money in the pocket to tear down and have run thru the planner. You can'y buy this wood and it would go along ways to a new barn. Our best cedar is coming in from way up north, if you know what I mean. I personnely like to keep the old buildings up and working but this one got caught on the south property line on a old short plat and a set back in a better spot will work better.
    Good luck in your project and stay dry.

    "What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered."
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Apr 2000
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    610
    Location
    Ontario
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    Ford 1710: Loader, Hoe, Snowblower, Box scrapper & 3ph Forks

    Default Re: Sad old barn

    If it's dry inside then there's a chance the building is basically sound. Reasonably plumb walls and level roof ridges are other indications.

    If it's leaking from the top, premium roofing patch (tar plus latex & other stuff) can hold the building for a few years. Just daub it over nail heads and seams. Generally the stuff doesn't last too long in sunlight or on steep pitches, but it's a quick fix for awhile.

    Buildings go from the bot++++as well as the top. Improved drainage around a building can slow down deterioration from below.

    Last fall we saved our sad old sugar shack shed. Shingling and designing a centre beam truss system for the lean-to roof was the ticket. We just left the barn board sides as they were.



  6. #6
    Super Member _RaT_'s Avatar
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    Northern CA.
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    Default Re: Sad old barn

    Don, the concrete block I mentioned would be my preference if starting from scatch. The big timber you have would be a shame to not reuse. My guess is that most of it would be douglas fir since it is so prevalent out here on the west coast. I've built large barns by myself with the help of a tractor, enjoyed every moment of it. Well, thats not true, when I was laying on the ground afraid to move because my back was having a caniption, I didn't enjoy that, but the rest was most enjoyable. Expense is always what slows us down. I think its one of those "lifes little laws" If you have the money to do it all, your tempted just to have it done. When you don't, you do everything you can yourself. Its at the very least, a learning experience, at best its something you enjoy and can be happy and proud of. Wish I could see what you have there, got a sister up in Burlington, WA. Rat...


  7. #7
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    Apr 2000
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    Default Re: Sad old barn

    I'm disappointed to hear that concrete block won't work with the existing frame. Maybe I'll look into vinyl. Maybe I'll get a good excuse to buy that nail gun finally...

    I misled you about this huge timber. It's in a different, older barn which I will use as a shop eventually. It used to be a beef refrigerator and maybe a slaughterhouse. The new barn is regular PT lumber. It doesn't sit on a pad, I guess the builder poured concrete into postholes. Again, I wish I was at home because I could put up some pictures.

    I don't know what kind of wood the frame for the old barn is. I imagine most of it came right off the property, and the unlogged lot next door is mostly alder and cedar. We've still got some beautiful cedars. In this part of the country you see a lot of stumps maybe 6'-8' high and 5' in diameter and larger. If the stump is in good condition you can see a notch where the lumberjacks inserted a board to stand on so that they could work above the base of the roots. I wish I had one of those trees still living.

    I love to show people around this place, so let me know when you come out to visit your sister. We moved into the house next door a year ago (4.25 acres, mostly bramble), then six months ago my farmer neighbor moved away, so my wife and I bought his lot too. My eyes just about bugged out when we eventually found a mortgage company that said yes. So until I get foreclosed on :-) I'll be able to enjoy a noble fir tree farm, trout pond, and about four acres of pasture. I can't wait to get the old shop fixed up too--it's a small wooden barn, the one with the huge timber.

    I'm enjoying this land so much that I would rather work less and do more things myself at home, like you said. That, and I've got a one-year old who's a handful. He likes to go everywhere with me, so it's hard to spend much time on the tractor, but at least he loves to walk around the farm.


  8. #8
    Member
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    Apr 2000
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    Default Re: Sad old barn

    Attachments?? I thought I posted to Rural Living. I'm supposed to be good at this computer stuff...


  9. #9

    Join Date
    Apr 2000
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    230
    Location
    East of Seattle, Washington
    Tractor
    64 MF Utility 35 retired to parts pile.

    Default Re: Sad old barn

    You sound as suprised as I was. This board has improved with age. You post where you want and we will find you. Later, you'll settle into your sweet spot as easy as tying on the boots. Or getting the settings on the new camera.


    "What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered."
    Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

  10. #10
    Veteran Member wen's Avatar
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    Apr 2000
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    1,513
    Location
    Central Texas
    Tractor
    Kubota M6800SD/LA1002 Loader Kubota RTV900

    Default Re: Sad old barn

    If the basic frame is intact, you can buy galvalume metal pretty inexpensive ($40 to $50 a square) A square being 100 sq ft. It is heavy gage and long lasting in an R panel configuration with sheets 3 ft wide and ordered by length where there is no cutting. Make an old run down barn nearly new. No trim is required but some people like it. String it with chicken wire and roll insulation and it will be a nice insulated barn. Actually, the steel structure is quite inexpensive and you can start from scratch for 50% more.

    Vinyl is a poor material. No strength. It is a FAKE material good primarily for covering existing structure that does not see much wind or hail.

    Concrete Block is nice, but much more expensive than metal and I can't lay blocks as well as I can run a screw gun. I use concrete block below ground. Pretty good for a storm cellar walls. [img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img]


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