Decisions when Building a barn: PreFab Wood Barn versus PreFab Steel Barn
Hi friends. I am new to the forum and look forward to hearing opinions from fellow barn owners.
I am in southern california, and considering building a barn in my backyard for my Two Huge 18'2hh Draft horses, 5 yr old Clydesdale mare & 25 yr old Percheron gelding. Both typical easy going draftys for the most part.
I was considering a Pre-Fab wood or steel gable or shedrow style barn with pipe walkouts if I can get the $$ together, or temporary Steel run in sheds with 24x24 pipe corrals attached. All on 2 aces.
Also Any referrals on compamies that have best prices and great quality pre fab barns that serve california?
Any experience with these scenarios?
Hi Draftstar - welcome to the forum.
We recently built a new barn and went with a pole building (poles in the ground, wood framing, metal sheeting on sides and roof); we also have a pole run in shed (wood framing, metal sheeting on sides, asphalt shingles on roof). The run in shed we built completely by ourselves and the barn was done by a local contractor so unfortunately I won't be of much help recommending someone in your area.
We chose to go with pole buildings because they were quick to put up and less costly than the traditional cement foundation/footing building with just as good longevity. Treated poles are used, of course, to prevent them from rotting in the ground. If the ground is not too rocky/stony at your place, that may be something you might want to look into.
My comment with regard to metal is that it's lovely to have something maintenance free but it's necessary to insulate it in some form to dampen the sound if you get rain or hail (which we do, in addition to snow) - if it's left as just metal the sound can be deafening during a storm and discourages the horses from using it.
Depending on your climate and what wants you may have for a building, you could probably get by quite nicely with just run in sheds (a tack room could be attached or built separately to be used for storing feed and/or tack - if you don't require a great deal of space, a prefab garden shed can work quite nicely). Where I am, we have cold winters and chilly falls/springs so it's very nice to have a barn to work out of for a softy like me.
Best of luck with the project and feel free to post work-in progress and completed photos as they're always interesting and fun to view.
Having grown up in Southern California, I am still amazed at the thought that horses in that climate need a "barn". They will be happier and healthier in a simple 3 sided shed. They do not want to be locked up in a barn and might become extra destructive if you do. It's best for any old horse to be out 24/7 moving around as well. 24" is also very small. That's only about 3X their body length. You would be better off making it longer and skinnier and combining the 2 runs together. For 2 24x24 runs would need 12 12' panels (you would use the shed for 2 panels). Those same 12 panels could give you a 48x36 run. I keep my stallion in a 20x40 run+ shed and that's about the smallest I would go.
drafts + wood = a mess . smallest run for a draft mix would be 18 x 30
In So Ca a rain cover should be enough. I prefer a 30 x 60 pen for a draft and draft mix.
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