How to Build a Overhang Barn

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Barns are essential for people who have livestock or need to store valuable equipment away from the elements. The simplest type of barn to build is an overhang barn. This can either be a pole barn or a standard barn. The key is to have cover on three sides from the weather, and an overhang that funnels water away from the stored material or livestock.

Things You'll Need

  • Concrete
  • Four-by-four posts, one for every 12 feet of building length
  • Framing lumber - minimum of 36 12-foot pieces of two-by-four lumber pieces
  • Siding
  • Sand
  • Power saw
  • Power drill
  • Wood screws
  • Hammer
  • Nails
  • Roofing nail

Begin with a clear blueprint of your idea. You must have your measurements on paper and take the time to measure them on the ground before you do any groundwork. Overhang barns are simple with their basic construction, but the actual overhang is tricky, making preparation extremely important.

Choose your building site with care. You must build a pad, or area of raised dirt or sand, that will be well-drained, ventilated and away from any areas prone to flooding or holding water. Make your measurements on the ground and mark them with stakes. Sink your four-by-four posts at the corners and cement them with concrete. They need to be placed at a depth of at least 18 inches, preferably 24 inches. Remember that to maintain structural integrity, you will need to sink a four-by-four post every 12 feet of length or width that you make your barn

Frame your barn with the lumber. Two-by-fours are a minimum, with four-by-sixes being more sturdy. If your barn is holding livestock, the lumber will have to be solid up to four feet high from the ground to avoid the animals kicking through the siding. If your building is only to hold equipment, hay or other storage items, you can frame the building with a skeleton frame only.

Use a minimum of a 30-degree slant for your overhang frame. This will need to be added onto the framing as one of the last steps. You need the slant to be enough to guide moisture away from the opening of the barn, yet not so steep as to make the angle cuts to your lumber more difficult than necessary. The easiest way to create the overhand is to overextend the lumber used from the back 4-by-4 post to the front 4-by-4 post by whatever space you want the overhang to reach out to. Make sure these are lower than the roof will be. You can then cut the angled pieces down from the roof to the long pieces of framework below it. Secure with both screws and glue to make the tightest fit possible.

Add the sides and roof to your barn. Metal siding is the most economical, and can even be found as a recycled material. Wood can be used but will be much more costly. Vinyl siding is attractive but not recommended for livestock unless it is over wood or another solid material, as it cannot stand up to animal kicks and other accidents.

Tips & Warnings

  • Take the time to do your work right. Although being cautious may put you behind schedule or stretch your budget, it is far better to do a job well and once than to do it sloppily and have to constantly be mending your work.
  • Always follow directions when working with power tools and wear protective equipment.

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