Thursday, February 08, 2007


Dad just retired a week or two back. He's gonna be a full time farmer and preacher's wife now. Besides hanging out at the Smallville barbershop and living vicariously through the customers there he's gonna try fixing up the farm. While he's done lots of work on the equipment over the years the buildings have been neglected. One of the many tasks we talked about was replacing one or both of the old hay barns. We don't keep cows or horses and one of the barns has been slowly sinking into the Earth due to the lack of a foundation. I've wanted to replace it for years so I'm probably a bit more enthused than he is.

Here's my preliminary sketch for one of the new barns. Since I didn't get to measure the exact dimensions are wrong. But it tells you how I'm thinking.

Instead of rebuilding the new barn the same way as the old barn we want to customize it for our needs. I'm using the old outline and just tweeking a few things.
The one story outcropping is a machine shop. It'll get the table saw and drill press and other related tools out of the garage. It also has plenty of space to pile up wood that we swear we're going to use someday.
I put a deck on top of the workshop because I thought it seemed appropriate. In another design I have the roof cover the deck and glass it in. This is so my uncle with the landscaping company can keep plants up there. A couple of discarded hot water tanks would store runoff from the roof to water the plants.
In this model the roof is sloped one way so it won't dump the water on the deck.
The main part of the building is a bit more than two stories tall. There's a huge sliding door so that tractors can drive in. If you're wondering what I mean by "tractor" so look here ( size of the door depends on if we want a combine to be able to fit in there.
There's a smaller door in the big door so we won't have to move the whole thing to get people in and out.
Off to the left of the big door you'll see a strange little square. With all the vehicles around we have to change our own oil and buy it by the barrel. Barrels of oil are heavy. I want to be able to back the pickup up to that chute, pull out the old barrel, slide in the new one, and be done with it.
Inside the main barn area there's a loft on either side. They're to be high enough that someone riding one of the old cabless tractors would be able to drive under them and park without hitting their head.
A walkway connects the two lofts. A door goes from the walkway to the deck.
Along the middle of the ceiling, not the highest point in this case, is a track and pulley system. This allows us to lift big thing up and slide them onto the loft. Mind out, it'll probably be used more often to swing from loft to loft. Truth be told that's the only reason I'm putting it in.
Look up near the peak of the roof. There's small squares drawn there. That indicates entrances for barn owls. Grandma's barn has a huge one. I want some on this farm, too. I'd also like to add bat nests.
My brother is an electrician, licensed instead of like the rest of the family who can do it without the paper, can do up the lighting good and proper. There's a faucet in the neighboring barn so it shouldn't be TOO hard to run one hose into this barn.
There will be at least a foundation around the walls if not under the whole thing.
The old wood will be sold to help pay for the new barn.

If you think of anything that should be added or want to make an offer on the wood let me know.

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