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  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    3
    Location
    Middle, TN
    Tractor
    John Deere

    Default Pole Barn Advice

    I know there are numerous threads regarding pole barns and I have been reading and soaking up all of the information for hours. That said, I apologize in advance for opening a new thread but with the overload of information (some of which dates a few years back), I'm hoping to narrow down the basics.

    My husband and I are wanting a 30x40 pole barn with lean-to and are ready to start researching contractors and products. Primary purpose is storage and workshop space. We want the lean-to so the z-trac can be stored outside but kept dry leaving more space in the building. The pole barn will definitely need a concrete slab and we'd like to have plumbing for utility sink(s) and a toilet/shower. Depending on cost, we don't necessarily need the toilet/shower up front but want to have the plumbing there when we are ready to do it.

    We don't plan to do any of the major work ourselves as we don't have the time or expertise (or desire for that matter).

    I'd like to get as much advice as possible though regarding which things we should consider and if anyone has had experience with contracting the entire project out.

    My biggest fear is that since we don't know much about the process we will miss out on adding something that we will later wish we had thought of or that we won't know which specific things to watch out for with contractors.

    My first step (after this post) will be contacting our county codes department regarding a building permit. We already know that we are allowed to build the type of building we want as long as it is in line with the design of our home.

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    May 2002
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    296
    Location
    Zelienople, PA
    Tractor
    L2500

    Default Re: Pole Barn Advice

    Consider insulation if you plan on heating the building.

    If you ever think you might install a 2-post lift then you need the proper thickness of concrete in the area of the lift posts.

    Consider your electric load. I did a new service on my 32x48.

    Ceiling height and garage door height? Do you ever plan on an RV?

  3. #3
    New Member
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    Jul 2012
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    3
    Location
    Middle, TN
    Tractor
    John Deere

    Default Re: Pole Barn Advice

    Thanks cj! Good questions.

    I'm not sure what our best options for heating are. We are in Middle Tennessee and winters are moderate - plenty of freezing temps but it's not generally prolonged. So - yes, planning on heating and will put insulation down on my list. We don't plan on an RV - maybe a travel trailer of some kind someday, but not a large RV.

    Tell me a little more about the electrical load. I envision my husband "puttering" more than anything in there and don't anticipate him doing much that would require any more power than things we are currently doing on our existing service. Is the concern that we might overload our existing system? If so - seems like a good idea to consider the separate service just curious about the specfic pros and cons.

  4. #4
    Veteran Member KennyG's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
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    1,080
    Location
    SW Michigan
    Tractor
    John Deere 2320

    Default Re: Pole Barn Advice

    As far as a separate service goes, you probably don't need this if it's more convenient to run it off your existing service. I have a 90 amp 220 breaker in the main in the house that feeds a subpanel in the house. That supplies the hot tub and remodeled master bath plus a few more odds and ends, and also feeds another subpanel in the pole barn with a 60 amp 220 breaker. The pole barn panel feeds the swimming pool pump, welder outlets, etc in the pole barn. It sounds horrendous but it works fine. Theoretically, I could have problems if I was running the pool pump and hot tub at the same time I'm welding, but there are limits to human capability.

  5. #5
    New Member
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    Jul 2012
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    3
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    Middle, TN
    Tractor
    John Deere

    Default Re: Pole Barn Advice

    Thanks KennyG! I think we should be fine with our existing service then...good to know.

    For a little more info on what we want: I found a thread in this forum by RxRatedZ71 showing his 30x40x12 pole barn project (http://www.tractorbynet.com/forums/p...rn-thread.html). He did it himself - but the picture shown in his first post is exactly the same thing we are looking for.

  6. #6
    Silver Member jdfire's Avatar
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    Jul 2007
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    200
    Location
    Michigan
    Tractor
    Ford 1620, hydrostatic FWD

    Default Re: Pole Barn Advice

    If you're planning on insulating and heating, consider rigid foam insulation under concrete slab, or at a minimum put down a vapor barrier to prevent moisture from wicking through the concrete.
    Ford 1620 HST FWD
    Attachments:
    FEL w/toothbar, Backhoe, 5' Rotary Cutter, 5' Boxblade, 5' Disc Harrow, 2 Bottom Plow, Cultivator, Landscape Rake

  7. #7
    Silver Member koamfps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    179
    Location
    Michigan
    Tractor
    NH TN70DA & NH 2120

    Default Re: Pole Barn Advice

    I too am in the process of erecting a structure- However mine will be a steel structure. Cj7 is spot on. Even if you don't think you are going to heat, insulate your roof at a minimum. Condensation is a b*%#h. Also if you are 100% sure of the size you need make it bigger.
    I have a pole structure and I grow I have out grown the pole barn and am now face with putting up a new structure!

    Things I would do different.
    Make it bigger
    Add insulation to the roof
    Add insulation under the cement.
    Have a different service (electric) than my home and put in an over sized electrical panel/ Breaker Box (if you don't need the slots don't use but it you do need the extra slots in the future you will have them. It's a heck of a lot cheaper than upgrading you service after the fact!)
    All the light switches and plugs you think you need, then add more, cause you won't have enough.
    Last edited by koamfps; 07-23-2012 at 08:07 PM.

  8. #8
    Elite Member Zebrafive's Avatar
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    Aug 2010
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    2,909
    Location
    South West MI
    Tractor
    John Deere 2030, John Deere 6415

    Default Re: Pole Barn Advice

    If you plan to run your electric under ground, get the panel and conduit for it mounted before your concrete is poured. Have the ground wire and rod installed too.
    John Deere 2030 JD 245SL Loader
    John Deere 6415 mfwd JD 640SL Loader

  9. #9
    Elite Member Zebrafive's Avatar
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    Aug 2010
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    2,909
    Location
    South West MI
    Tractor
    John Deere 2030, John Deere 6415

    Default Re: Pole Barn Advice

    Do Wainscot! If you damage a panel you only have to replace the lower part. If you do not want the two tone look, do it in the same color. It was just starting to take hold when I built my barn and I wish I had done it .

    Screws not nails!
    John Deere 2030 JD 245SL Loader
    John Deere 6415 mfwd JD 640SL Loader

  10. #10
    Silver Member
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    Jan 2011
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    115
    Location
    Philippi WV
    Tractor
    farmall cub John Deere 310 Backhoe Loader Ventrac 4131

    Default Re: Pole Barn Advice

    14 foot side walls it allows you to build second floors over lawn mowers and other small engines or any thing else.

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