How to Build a Mini Barn

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A mini barn makes a perfect storage shed or home for small animals. Mini barns can be purchased already built or in expensive kits, but the most economical way to build a mini barn is from scratch. A project like this is fairly easy to do with minimal carpentry experience. Whether it is to store a tractor, hay, firewood or to house animals, a mini barn is an ideal addition to a home or garden.

Things You'll Need

  • Post-hole digger or auger
  • Large wooden poles
  • 2-by-4-inch boards
  • Bracing boards
  • Nails
  • Hammer or nail gun
  • Circular saw
  • Garden stakes
  • Twine or string
  • Measuring tape
  • Wood siding
  • High-quality outdoor stain
  • Level
  • Barn door kit
  • Ventilation window kit
  • Quick-drying concrete
  • Bracing brackets
  • Spray paint
  • Gravel or sand
  • Roofing
  • Saw horses

Preparation

  • Decide on the size of the mini barn. A good size for small animals or storage is 10 by 16 feet. Purchase materials according to size.

  • Clear a flat area to use as a foundation. The area should be 2 feet wider than the barn. A 12-by-18-foot area will work for a 10-by-16-foot barn. The earth should be soaked and packed down for suitable footing.

  • Using garden stakes and twine, make a guide for building. Make a spray paint line for the boundaries of the barn.

Building

  • Dig a hole about 3 feet deep and slightly larger in diameter than your poles at one of the corners. Put gravel or sand in the bottom of the hole for drainage. Place a pole in the hole. Pour concrete around the pole and tamp it to remove air bubbles. Nail bracing boards to the post to keep it straight. Install the other three corner poles. Allow them to dry 24 hours before removing bracing boards.

  • Nail three 2-by-4-inch boards to the corner posts on three sides. Be sure each of the boards are level. This is the frame for the walls.

  • Build a frame for the roof using 2-by-4-inch boards and bracing brackets. The frame should be built to allow water to run off the roof. A normal barn-shaped roof is made up of three identical obtuse angles. This style of roof makes the building more barn-like. Nail the roof frame to the wall frame.

  • Cut the wood siding to the proper size, using sawhorses and a circular saw. The siding needs to be the exact height and width of the side of the barn be covered. Nail the wood siding to the three sides of the barn frame. Install the wood siding carefully so it does not crack when nailing.

  • Paint the barn with a high-quality outdoor stain. This will seal the wood and prevent it from rotting.

  • Install doors, ventilation windows and roof. Use 2-by-4-foot boards as support boards to make an area for installing the the doors and windows. Follow all kit instructions carefully.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use an assistant to help with barn building.
  • If using for animals, put animal bedding in the mini barn.
  • Wear safety protection when operating power equipment.
  • Check local building restrictions before building a mini barn.

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References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Pixland/Getty Images
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