Originally Posted by Brittney1119
Another question would be how big of an area would someone need to store 200 or 400 bales of hay at a time?
Well that all depends.
The heavier your bale the less room you'll actually need for storage. A common bale weight is 50 pounds but a 100 pound bale is only slightly larger in size and you've gone from 40 bales/ton to 20. FYI, 50 pound bales are preferred by many due to how easy they are to handle in comparison.
Next depends on vertical height. How high is your rafters going to be and how high are you going to stack those bales? Most people are only comfortable stacking hay 3-4 tiers high. Taller people can toss a bale up 5-6 tiers from the ground. Going up higher than that requires either an elevator or dragging a bale up the stack. I've gone 20 tiers high in a barn. Elevation allows more hay to be put in with the same footprint.
Another factor is who baled the hay. Someone who is good at setting up their baler will make every bale the exact same weight and size. Unfortunately many don't do this so you get all different sizes of bales. That plays havoc with stacks and isn't fun at all to deal with.
Last factor is how tight is your stack. A good stacker can put ~10% more bales in the same area as a bad stacker.
So you see, you ask a simple question and get a more complicated answere than you expect. Best thing to do is go to the guy you think will supply you and ask or measure several of his bales and take the average. Then do some simple math to figure out how much room it will take