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Country Discussion Topics
To add your comments to this topic, click on one of the 'Reply' links below.

Opinions/Experience, Please
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F14    Posted 05-30-2001 at 14:04:55       [Reply]  [No Email]
I'm building (finally!) my tractor shed/hay barn. I'm supporting the loft with trusses so I can have a clear space underneath with no columns.

Conventional trusses on 24" centers will cost about $1280. Wood I-beams rated for the same load on 16" centers will cost $1000.

Anybody used the wood I-beams? Any pro's and con's on which to use?

F14...Thanks, Everyone    Posted 06-01-2001 at 03:33:40       [Reply]  [No Email]
After much research and discussion with builders, I have decided to go with the wood I-beams. It took some convincing, as they are almost all using OSB (chipboard) for the web now, but there are so many advantages otherwise, it makes sense to me to use them.

Regarding the moisture thing, the advice seems to be to hit them with some sealer just in case, which I will do.

Thanks again for your input, you're a great group.

chief613    Posted 06-01-2001 at 03:08:19       [Reply]  [No Email]
we use the wood i beams quite often, the ones with particle board, there the under side of a cats tail. They are light, and stiff. sometimes we will have 40' joist that span 3 points.
makes it easy to put one joist instead of 2. if ya gonna be doin it alone or with little help the i beams are the best to work with, the trusses may be heavey and awkward to handle alone. The moister issue may be a problem. I know they do make an treated paralam, maybe they also make treated i beams. Even if the cost was a little more i would go with the ibeam for the ease of workin with um. Good luck

swavo    Posted 05-30-2001 at 18:38:18       [Reply]  [Send Email]
The wood I-beams are an excellent system,as well are trusses.With trusses at 24" o.c. sometimes the flooring will seem a little spongy.Another plus for the I-beams is they generally aren't as tall as trusses if head room or overall height is a conscern.

Cal S Hey 14    Posted 05-30-2001 at 18:19:36       [Reply]  [No Email]
Back in 81 I did a garage for a guy in Colorado using pine first and second cut slab wood as board and bat siding. Got the materials for almost nuthing as mill then was just burning the stuff.The guy wanted rustic and was pleased as punch. made a pretty penny in profit on that job.Cal S

Spence    Posted 05-30-2001 at 15:10:47       [Reply]  [No Email]
I'm building a barn next year, 20 X 24.

I don't think the particle board/2X3 I-Beams
are appropriate. First I don't think they've been
on the market that long to verify endurance, second, particle board(or chip board) can't hold
up in high humid conditions. If you have cattle
in there for the winter, there's going to be a
lot of water in the air.

Remember what they said about preserved wood
foundations. Guaranteed 60 years right?. Well
around here some folks are re-poring they're
foundations after 30.

You might want to ask some farmers if they
have some old hardwood beams, or an old barn to
tear down. Those beams are just like steel after
100 years or so. Not sure what your bylaws say though.

My 2 cents.

F14    Posted 05-30-2001 at 15:14:48       [Reply]  [No Email]
Good point. The front will be open, and the only thing under it will be tractors and equipment, moisture shouldn't be a big problem. I'm not sure the web is particle board, but if it is, I'll definitely go with web trusses. I don't trust particle board. I'd expect they'd be regular plywood, but I'll sure check on it.

Thanks for the input.

Nathan(GA)    Posted 05-30-2001 at 14:17:15       [Reply]  [No Email]
I've heard good things about the wood I-beams in house construction, but never heard of them used for that purpose.

Does the $1000 include materials for the roof structure or just the beams?

I may not understand exactly what you have in mind.

I built a 24x36 from an old abandoned chicken house that was being torn down. The materials were real reasonable. I've seen some advertised for free for removal, but a lot of work. Just a thought!

F14    Posted 05-30-2001 at 14:56:42       [Reply]  [No Email]
That's just the cost of the beams. The whole structure (less beams/trusses) is gonna run about $4800. It'll be polebarn style, three board-and-batten walls on the first floor, with a BIG header all the way across the front opening, a truss floor, then 6' frame walls and a "saltbox" style roof over the hayloft portion. Poles will be PT 4x6 set on cement pads 4' down and 8' on center, and backfilled with screened gravel to give a reasonably level floor. I'll be parking equipment under it. No doors right now, but I'll make provisions for 'barn track' type doors down the road. Need to get this puppy up ASAP, as I've lost my hay storage (Son in Law sold out and moved to town) and I got hay coming in July.

I looked at recycled materials, and even sawing out my own lumber, and if I pay myself minimum wage for the time it would take, it's somewhere between a dead heat and slightly cheaper to buy new. Pine board is cheap around here right now for some reason. The time crunch is the clincher tho.

Nathan(GA)    Posted 05-30-2001 at 18:48:53       [Reply]  [No Email]
Now I understand. I didn't know there would be a full second floor. Sounds like a nice shed, no doubt. I would probably use the truss style, just because I'm old fashioned. I've seen both the particle board and plywood type.

Not sure on the lumber prices. But I hear Canada is flooding the US market with dirt cheap timber. It's putting a hurt on some of the loggers around here. I haven't priced any lumber lately, so I can't say for around here.

Fogey -- Canadian lumber    Posted 05-31-2001 at 07:38:34       [Reply]  [No Email]
Yep, the trucks run thru here day & night. The lumber yard is full of Canadian labels. The pallet plant gets thin-sawed Canadian oak (low-quality) delivered way cheaper than we can process it here. Not sure HOW they do it, but more power to them :)

But see, that's part of an international economy - unless we're able to work for the same price as the neighbors, they get the job. If Canada paid $100/hour, i'd wade a river to get there too!

BTW F14, i don't know how much snowload you have to consider, but roof pitch depends on it. And a metal roof gets wet when the dews condenses EVERY morning, rain or shine. And painted metal roofing drips less.

F14    Posted 05-31-2001 at 12:12:30       [Reply]  [No Email]
Snow load varies here in coastal Maine, but 4:12 meets code. I haven't done the math yet, but I'll probably make the flatter pitch at least a 5:12, and the front will be dang near vertical (Saltbox roof).

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