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Old 05-27-2009, 09:40 AM   #1
His200HerScout
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Default my 32x52 with full loft

Been meaning to post pics for a long time!!!

First off, the old shed. Wow, what an engineering marvel! It was made from telephone poles, those horizontal wooden beams near the top of telephone poles that hold the wires, old plywood road signs (no, I am not kidding), and corrugated steel & plastic. Apparently some previous owner worked for the road commission -- at least that's the story I've heard.

The roof was constructed of what I decided to call trussy things. Sort of like rafters, but without a ridge beam. Sort of like trusses because they had a cross-piece near the peak. They were about 6 feet on center with no purlins between, so the 1/2" plywood sheathing spanned nearly 6 feet. The roof was so weak that my father in-law and I ended up picking the corrugated roof off with shovels because I thought I'd go through the roof by standing on it.

Telephone poles probably have a large weight bearing capacity, but they weren't notched, so the roof load was carried by carriage bolts, which (of course) sagged. Also, the telephone poles were not set with any precision, so the builder just added (a few inches worth of) nuts and washers to the carriage bolts to make the trussy things parallel. This also contributed to the roof sagging.

Honestly, I can't believe this thing didn't fall over decades ago... And it was full of garbage that came with the house when we bought it. The only good thing I can say is "thank you for using box nails, because it came apart easily!"

I shot some video of pulling the poles out of the ground with my truck using a railroad tie and a chain. Now THAT was fun. I'll have to post that here or on YouTube.
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Old 05-27-2009, 09:42 AM   #2
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

After asking many questions and getting many great answers from Garage Journal members, I got my 26x46 barn drawn up the way I wanted. I went to the building inspector and said "here, 1192 square feet, just under that maximum you mentioned a few weeks ago." He gave me a funny look and said "what maximum?" A day later I came back with a 32x52 drawing, and he wrote up a permit within 24 hours.

I really, really wanted to build this myself and the entire job is within my capabilities. Between family and work, I just don't have the time and won't for quite some time. While tossing around the idea of playing GC, I had a heck of a time finding subcontractors that did quality work. I ended up going with a highly recommended general contractor who has done an excellent job so far. The only thing I will be doing is the electrical.

Here's my SketchUp drawing. I didn't bother with colors because computers are terrible at painting them correctly. We're going with HardiePanel Sierra 8 siding and Miratec trim, and we will be painting three Benjamin Moore colors that we chose ourselves. When I applied those colors to SketchUp, it looked disgusting . So I made a model out of plywood scraps and paint samples and thankfully the actual color is what I expect .
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Old 05-27-2009, 09:47 AM   #3
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

The day of the dig was awesome. 60-something degrees and sunny. They dug for a few hours and then poured the footing. When they say "footing ought to be on undisturbed soil" this is the digger you want. One guy was in the trench with a laser level while the backhoe operator ever-so-carefully dug each piece. No back-filling of low spots was required because of the care the operator took.
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Old 05-27-2009, 09:48 AM   #4
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

The next day, the masons showed up. I've never seen a wall so smooth. Every block was laid with precision, and the building ended up perfectly square.
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Old 05-27-2009, 09:53 AM   #5
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

It required a ridiculous amount of sand back-fill, but they did it right, compacting each load of sand. I guess I never took a picture of it, but they definitely used a plate compactor on each load, not just a dozer and a front loader.
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Old 05-27-2009, 09:55 AM   #6
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

There was a small miscommunication, and the masons only put in 5 courses of block. This would've put my siding about 4 inches above ground -- not good in Michigan. A quick phone call and I had one more course of block. Now the siding is/will be 12 inches off the ground and I am pleased. I also get a ceiling height of around 11 feet which is plenty for me.

I guess I never took a pic of the extra course until after the floor was poured...
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Old 05-27-2009, 09:59 AM   #7
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

They did an awesome job on the concrete floor. Mirror smooth, angled toward the drains, thresholds are angled outward so rain doesn't wash in. You know, all those little details that unprofessionals overlook.
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Old 05-27-2009, 10:03 AM   #8
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

Here they are framing.... Not sure what the stuffed bird is all about. Maybe good luck? They nailed it to the pole the day they arrived. Maybe it's an attention-getter so the SkyTrak operator doesn't drive into the pole...
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Old 05-27-2009, 10:06 AM   #9
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

And setting the trusses... By the way, my hat is off to this crew. I've heard so many stories of guys showing up late & leaving early and homeowners footing the bill for idle rental equipment. These guys showed up everyday before 7 am, didn't drink coffee, didn't chat, ate lunch in 30 minutes, smoked while working (no smoke breaks), stayed past 5, and worked the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend. They needed the SkyTrak for only one week because they worked so hard.
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Old 05-27-2009, 10:08 AM   #10
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

Up goes the siding! That's where they're at as of today. It is raining, so that will delay them. Probably will have it sided and painted by early next week. I am happy so far with the contractor and his crew.

My wife and I really feel like we went out on a limb with this HardiePanel stuff. We wanted something paintable, but not short-lived. HardiePanel has a great reputation, but finding examples is extremely difficult. After doing a bunch of Google searches for T1-11 buildings, we came up with a look we wanted. We ended up biting the bullet and ordered HardiePanel hoping it would turn out as expected. We both think it will. We're going to have the 4' seams covered with 3.5" Miratec rather than the traditional/typical board & batten 2" Miratec on 8" spacing. These are examples that we found in a Google image search: http://www.barnsnorthwest.com/barns.htm
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Last edited by His200HerScout; 05-27-2009 at 10:29 AM. Reason: added commentary
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Old 05-27-2009, 12:33 PM   #11
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

Looks like a really nice setting you have there. I like the roof shape you selected as well.

Btw, did you keep any of those old signs? Would be funny/cool to clean one up, add some trim to it, and display it in your new beautiful space!
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Old 05-27-2009, 02:06 PM   #12
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

That looks GREAT!!! You'll love the Hardi-panels. I resided my old house with them and they were great. I sold it right after I finished so I can't comment conclusively on how they hold up but I know that they still look great 5 years after I put them up from driving by the old place. (Despite the people who bought it's lack of upkeep.)

What will the upstairs be used for?
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Old 05-27-2009, 04:19 PM   #13
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

x2 on saving the old signs.

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Old 05-27-2009, 04:54 PM   #14
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

I was thinking about the signs too LOL..But all of it looks real nice.
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Old 05-27-2009, 06:28 PM   #15
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

3x on the signs - use them for a ceiling in the new building!
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Old 05-27-2009, 07:16 PM   #16
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

The only problem with the signs is: they were all used and at the end of their lives 20-30 years ago when the shed was constructed. Up close, they're flaky and beat up, etc. Also, none of them are complete. The builder nailed them up then cut them off. It's marine plywood so it's in good condition, just not showroom quality. I think I'll build a clubhouse for the kids sometime. Maybe I can mount one or two of them... Or cut the highway numbers or street names out of the good ones.

The loft will be for storage, but it is way bigger than the amount of storage we need. Some ideas are... Wall off an area and make a home gym (no weights, just cardio equipment), wall off another area and make a playroom of some sort. It's 16x52x8 so there's plenty of space up there for whatever we decide. Honestly, we don't need the space, but I didn't want to "waste" it by getting non-attic trusses.
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Old 05-27-2009, 09:09 PM   #17
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

option 2 for the signs (and then I'll stop hijacking :-) )

make some coasters for around the shop... still lets you launch into the story every time someone asks

in any case, really impressive stuff you've got going on..

edit: pool table/rec room type of area up in the loft!
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Old 05-27-2009, 10:25 PM   #18
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

Quote:
Originally Posted by His200HerScout View Post
The loft will be for storage, but it is way bigger than the amount of storage we need. Some ideas are... Wall off an area and make a home gym (no weights, just cardio equipment), wall off another area and make a playroom of some sort. It's 16x52x8 so there's plenty of space up there for whatever we decide. Honestly, we don't need the space, but I didn't want to "waste" it by getting non-attic trusses.
Hows about a secret laire for yo and the wifey!
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Old 09-23-2009, 11:46 AM   #19
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

looks like this thread could use resurrected from the dead. any updates?

any pics of that cornbinder you'd like to share? i have a 72 1210 Pickup.
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:21 PM   #20
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Default Re: my 32x52 with full loft

He musta asked about the bird, then they had to...
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