It needed work...should we tear it down and build new or should we rebuild and repair it? After the 'Barn Guy' came and spent time looking at it the verdict came in. With repair it would easily handle another 30 years, maybe more! So the date was set, the deal was made....we were redoing our beloved barn.
Facing the barn, this end is the North end. It has three bays, all three have double doors mounted on hinges. The wood on this end was in the worst shape. The doors were awful to open but still solid.
The Southeast Corner. It had two sets of tobacco doors here, one set gone and the other falling or fallen off. We had a load of large gravel dumped here to bring the slope to level. We felt it would also help drainage. It should stop the entry becoming a mud hole in wet weather.
The south end, this was the worst wall of all. Bales were stacked against it when we got here and the build up of debris had torn and rotted the steel. The peak of the roof was in bad shape as well. In wet weather the drainage enters the barn here so we decided to build a lean to for two reasons. 1- For extra shelter and storage. 2- To stop the water coming into the barn.
The roof is gone, it was rather beautiful in a geometric sort of way, but its always disturbing to see a roofless barn.
Fear of heights is not something you can have working on a barn roof.
One day we had to go to town, this is the front of the barn when we left.....
This what we came home to!
The inside view of the south wall, the awful tin is gone and you can see the rafters of the lean to going up. We were very pleased to find less rain damage then we had expected.
Looking out of Bay 2...the poor chickens were traumatized and would come out to eat when ever there was a lull in hammering.
From the south side, the lean to rafters going up.
The roof and siding going on. I think I love brown and green for a barn. I had always thought of white and green before. We thought the brown would look more like a wooden barn and had chosen green for the roof.
Meanwhile the front of the barn was getting fixed as well. We decided to close of the third bay [the right side] from the front. It has good access from the breezeway so it is still easy to get into. The new lumber will weather to a gray patina in a year or so.
The work was steady despite miserable weather. Ralph set up our burning barrel out back so the men could get warm.
Our Construction Boss....Kinky. He would sit on the deck rail and watch intently. There was just too much going on so the barn cats visited the house a LOT!
As you can tell he was not terribly impressed!
The second tier of wood going up. The young man doing the high work, stood on a 2x10 scaffold nailed on uprights. It made me cringe to watch but it was secure and is how the wood had been put up on these barns for ages.
The South East corner. The collapsed double doors are gone and closed in by a new wall. The door is hung and it slides beautifully. This door opens to the corral and will be the most used by the sheep and cows.
The Bay 2 door has been hung and is almost finished.
We are so pleased we decided to save the barn. It was not cheap but still cheaper then building new building of the same space. This barn will more than fill our needs and it adds value to the farm. Thats exciting to me, this little place is becoming a farm again. The barn has a new life ahead of it, with all sorts of new adventures. The calf eating grain at night, adds to the nose of the chickens and the antics of the cats. The Milk cow arrives next week if all goes well.
The fence build is still ongoing but should be finished next week with this warmer weather.
And on one odd note....after all the fighting we went through to get the turkeys to move to the barn, the doors plus the bitter weather did the trick. We locked them in for two nights and they have figured it out. They have moved off the deck. I miss them sort of! They are enjoying the loft which they discovered and they go back to the barn at dusk after their shortened walk abouts because of the snow.
I just hope this helps you see what an old barn can become. Its the best way to recycle.
God Bless everyone and keep safe.