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More barn building questions
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Jake    Posted 05-30-2003 at 20:02:36       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Now that I have been given the tentative OK by SWMBO, I have a few more questions for you. I say "tentative" because it is on the condition we spend a little money at a time over a period of time building this 24x24 shed/barn/cover...instead of a huge expense all at once (huge to us, peanuts to others I guess).

My question is, can this be done practically? Let's say I pour a slab (stick frame) or set the poles (pole barn) next week. Then I add the walls etc. Can I realistically wait 3 or 4 weeks before the next part letting the untreated wood sit in the open that long?

Let's say stick frame.. can I do the walls in a week and then cover them with a tarp or whatever for a few weeks until the next paycheck rolls in and I can do the joists, rafters, etc. roof, etc. then the shingles?

I know from woodworking to not let things sit, so am I better off just saving until I can hire someone to do all of it all at once? How do y'all who do your own do it? I don't have heaps of money or helpers to work with.

I want to build this thing myself but I don't want to be foolish either.

Any ideas welcome.


Arlan    Posted 06-04-2003 at 09:17:44       [Reply]  [Send Email]
It will not hurt the wood to be exposed if it gets to dry out. It will turn gray but not hurt the stregth.

One note if your are not a perfectionist. I added on to my shop a couple of times. 2 sections 12' wide by 40' long. Each time, I would start the project with cull lumber that I picked up at the local lumber yard. You can get the lumber for as low as 25cents on the dollar. It may not be perfect but once you cover it with metal siding, noone will notice. If they do, who cares. It is just a barn, or shed.

I get tickled by waching people pay $6.00 per board for a 2x that they will take home an cut up into small pieces for a doghouse. Why not spend a $1.00.

Our local lumber yard puts cull packs out at 1/2 price. The longer they sit the lower they will go. I once seen a cull pack of 30 8' 1"x12"s that they wanted $150.00 for.($300.00 inside the store) I offered them $75.00 and they said no. A month later after the outside boards turned grey, I offered them $30.00($1.00 per board) and they said OK. That is 10 cents on the dollar.

That is the way to build a barn.

Am I cheap or what.

Chuck, WA    Posted 06-02-2003 at 07:12:06       [Reply]  [No Email]
Built my 24x36 last year - first time for me. Started in May and finished in October, most of the time with bare wood exposed to our very hot (90-105 deg), dry (less than 7" of rain/year...mostly in the winter) climate in eastern Washington.

Given the quality of lumber these days - not exactly what I'd call dry and well seasoned - the main problem was warping and in some cases, nails pulling a little. I had one brace running from the ground to the top of an end truss - a couple of 16 ft 2x6s overlapped and spliced - and after a few weeks to a month of being in place, when we took it down, it was warped a good 30 degree twist or more.

It can be done, but if I was doing it again, I'd try to get it up and covered as soon as possible. In a climate that's not so hot and dry, might not be as bad.

DeadCarp    Posted 05-31-2003 at 05:09:38       [Reply]  [No Email]
If it's any consolation, generations of people have built their places a few sticks at a time. Couples used to get together, find a favorite parking spot, later buy a piece it from whoever and slowly start their own place. The local goal was to get it closed-in by fall but as they gathered parts, they'd stack them in the shade somewhere til they had enough to nail together. I know of at least one basement where every block or window came home in the trunk on one payday or another. Wood will last eons in the shade - i always keep a board pile in the shed, real handy - i'd store it til i had enough to cover it with the metal.

And nowdays with recycling keep your eyes open and be creative - stop by auction sales late in the day etc - maybe get a whole pile of lumber for a couple dollars - my buddy gets old bicyles for a dollar, tunes them up and rents them out for $15/day, who cares if they bring them back? - several local guys make a habit of stopping by the dump all summer (especially when the city cabin people leave) and you can get free tires, wash machines, doors, toilets etc, some practically new. This time of year those fellas have a trailerful alongside the road selling the extra stuff back to this year's tourists. :)

Fawteen    Posted 05-31-2003 at 04:31:33       [Reply]  [No Email]
I built a 20x32 pole barn about 95% by myself (I had one SiL help me set the poles and frame and sheet the roof) so it can be done. The weather varied from foggy to too hot to pouring rain in the 6 weeks it took me to have it weathertight. I kept my lumber covered until it was nailed up, after that, it had to take it's chances. No problem with warping or splitting. The sun does more to twist a board than moisture does.

I used metal roofing. Cost is about the same (a tad more, but not much) and installation time is less than half compared to decked and shingled.

If ya diddle around waiting for everything to be perfect, you'll never get it built. Just do it.

Week N Warrior (MS/MO)    Posted 05-31-2003 at 04:20:09       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I've taken years to build things in the past.
3 or 4 weeks would be no problem.
Best way to go about it is build the fram wall.
put on the plywood corners or let-in bracing. Then do the roof. It can set out all summer uncovered. But it is prefered that once you start decking the roof to try to go ahead and get the singles on before it gets rained on. At the lest get it blacked in. But it's not that big of a deal if it does get wet(useing plywood, I don't use OSB). Once you finsih the roof you can come back and do the walls. Do it as fast as you can but don't worry about it getting weathered. The wood will turn gray but it will be OK.
You can build with poles cheaper but a slab and stick would be better.


Thomas S.    Posted 05-30-2003 at 20:48:44       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I agree. When lumber, even treated lumber gets wet and then is hit by a summer sun it has a tendency to twist and warp and split. Ideally, If it were stick built on a slab then one would want to frame the walls, cieling and roof, sheet the roof and walls and at least cover the roof with tar paper. Realistically, to do this over a day or two on a 24x24 would take several hard working and somewhat expierenced people. The same is pretty much true of post and beam. I suppose that one could frame and sheet one wall at a time, stacking one on top of the other and keeping them covered with a tarp, then when all four walls are ready and there is going to be a couple (I say a couple just in case the helpers you do have decide they would rather go fishing or whatever) of nice days, the walls could be stood up, and the roof framed and sheeted and tar papered in a day. But then, standing poles one would not need walls to frame a roof and sheet it. That could possibly be done in a day if the poles were already set. One thing to be leary of doing this is wind. A roof with out any walls in a high wind is like an open umbrella sitting on the ground. Overall your chances of the lumber getting wet would 50/50 but thats just my opinion. That is a challange. Air nailers speed things up some what. I wish you the best of luck however you decide to build. Lets us know how it turns out.

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