Oh yeah! Sorry I didn't look at the screen name...
The stalls were a BIG undertaking. My husband bought a smaller mig welder for the job which worked out well. I didn't have to weld anything myself (thank god) but it took him forever and alot of chop saw blades to cut and weld all of those bars in. But it cost us a fraction of the price of a prefab one.
If you do go metal frames, wipe them all down with mineral spirits or paint thinner before you weld them together because if you don't.. going back to do this is a PAIN... We also used a cup brush to clean up the welds a little so they would look better under the paint.
We used a rustoleum metal primer and flat paint finish. Don't use a gloss at all because it looks terrible. We also found it easier to use those really small rollers (not the foam ones). Instead of taping, we just used a plastic gaurd.. same for staining because stain will mess up even a black finish. I wouldn't worry about your northern shortcomings
messing up your paint finish...as long as you wipe the metal down before you paint it and get it primered everything should be fine even if it does rust a little bit in the process. The primer and paint both dry reallly fast too.
These are all things we had to learn the hard way.