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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Gizmo - I have seen those. I heavily considered using them, but they seem to have less wind strength than buried poles - at least according to Menards website. I say that, and my grandpas barns he built 40 years ago are still standing, with a similar construction. Honestly, with this build, I went with the traditional buried poles, understanding there may be some risk with rot. Thanks for the information though. I like that I am on the same page with you GTT experts!

MTB, good point about the engineered trusses.
 

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I would go with the bought trusses. I think either type of post is going to be fine and there are advantages to both. I like the engineered trusses because I have seen plenty of roofs cave-in from snow loads and if you’re going to finish the inside you have that weight plus insulation to contend with. It doesn’t sound like you will finish it but up the street you could. I have also seen pieces of steel blown into a field with the trust still attached to it when the nails or screws did not give before the board. I would suspect the grade of lumber used in the engineered one takes into account this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
This weekend I pulled back about 4 inches of top soil (as shown in the first photo), measured the distance from the road, and "soft" squared the building. I deep roto-tilled with my 4044M and 673 tilller, then using the bucket I scooped the dirt off. I put the stakes where I thought the building should go and checked the measurements. While the length and width calculate correctly, I still need to officially square it. I will attempt this with the use of batter boards and string, which I will install today (hopefully, depends on work). My first time at the 3-4-5 rule! I also checked for tile, with the tile probe shown in the second photo. I don't know if saving the tile is even worth it, but it's no big deal to move the building a foot to prevent tile destruction.

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When you measure the hypotenuse, watch out for sag in your tape measure! Using pins as shown above, you should have to worry about that though, just rocks & bumps in the ground. At 44x48, you should end up with 53.665 feet corner to corner. Check for parallel also. Bob
 
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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
I installed the batter boards. As you can tell the ground is incredibly flat, so I don't have to use the batter boards to measure elevation. I am simply using them to square up the building. The first batter boards I attempted to pound in - didn't work so well, as you can see on the left front batter board stake in the first photo. I found digging a small hole worked much better. Once the boards were in I used our mason string to square it up. I used a steel measure when I could, to minimize tape measure stretch. I measured the width, the length, then used the 3-4-5 on every corner. I am off an 1/8" on opposite corners - I think that will be fine. I measured the diagonal measurements, and they line up.

I intend on using an 14" auger to drill the post holes. In the second photo, as my wife demonstrates, I used a plumb and a stencil with a hole cut out to spray paint the center of where I want the auger when I lower it. The stencil is simply a 5.5" square, with 1 1/2" added to each side. Basically representation of the 6x6, with a 2x6 girt attached to it. On Friday, I would like to rent the 3-pt post-hole digger, and dig all the posts. As for the depth, since I am on very flat ground, I am going to have the tractor on the inside of the building dig about 4 ft down. Just enough to include the few inches of packed stone, the footing pad, and to set the post 4 ft down. Once I know the depth, I can set the 3 point stop on the tractor to have uniform depth on all the poles. I have 80 lb bag of quickrete I will include with each pole. Words make this easy. Let's see how it works in real life!

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I am off an 1/8" on opposite corners - I think that will be fine.
My wife and and I built a ~20x30 barn by ourselves a few years ago and reading this thread brings back a lot of memories.

A quote I saw on another forum eased my mind about such things - "you're building a pole barn not a Swiss watch."
 

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Something I’ve learned when drilling fence post holes is to straddle all the post holes in the same row in line with the tractor. That makes them easier to keep them straight and all the holes will be similar. It’s difficult to drill straight down. If you drill them from the sides of your run it’s more difficult to keep the posts in perfect alignment and you’ll spend a lot of time with a spade and manual post hole digger. If you’re digging a much bigger hole than the post it won’t be a problem but then you also don’t need to be as precise.
As @Oscar Leroy says- you’re not building a watch, it’s a barn.
 

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I drilled 3 foot holes to set my posts on the pads. My pads were almost that big. That left plenty of room to square up the pole. Putting the first few poles in the holes was a bugger until we found our technique. I'd consider putting the first poles solid on 2 walls and then centering the corner pole to align with the other 2. I think that would have made my first corner better.

We put the corner pole in first. Broke the first one we tried due to lack of experience. That corner post could have been straighter if it hadn't been our first attempt.

Strings high, strings low, level, level check again. We spent hours on the first couple with 4 guys. By the end, it was Dirty and I and about 20 minutes a pole.
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
OK, good to know. Great feedback. So my plans call for 14 inch holes. All I got, is a 18 inch auger, so that will have to do. I figured it allows me some movement from side to side if I need it. I will have the auger for a week, which should be plenty of time, lol. I will be picking up the auger Friday AM, although depending on how wet it gets from the rain, I may not be able to start until saturday or sunday. It's gently raining all day today, and scattered thunderstorms tomorrow. However, after tomorrow, it's a week's worth of sunshine and 70-80s.
 

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Don't poke a hole until you have clear weather-the voice of experience...
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lil slow to the building party.........but as a builder i would suggest before you do anything more .....think water drainage around your building ....raise your pad if needed ....get your dirt work right now...
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
ttazzman - yes, drainage is really important. The plan is to have the building about four inches higher than the ground around it. Once completed, I will have a concrete pad out for the animals with a gentle slope for water to drain away. When that's complete, I will grade dirt up to the building allowing slope. Once this building is erected, I should be done with buildings, and I can run my 10 inch smooth wall tile up to the rear of the property - I had that installed last year to the ditch/creek (~100 yards from the this building. Eventually where a house will go years down the road. In summary, I will have three buildings plugged into this 10 inch pipe. I don't plan on having any drains in the actual barn for a couple reasons. First, we don't in the existing pig barn, and don't seem to have a problem, and secondly, with sawdust and chaff, drains just clog.

Any gaps in the logic?
 
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ttazzman - yes, drainage is really important. The plan is to have the building about four inches higher than the ground around it. Once completed, I will have a concrete pad out for the animals with a gentle slope for water to drain away. When that's complete, I will grade dirt up to the building allowing slope. Once this building is erected, I should be done with buildings, and I can run my 10 inch smooth wall tile up to the rear of the property - I had that installed last year to the ditch/creek (~100 yards from the this building. Eventually where a house will go years down the road. In summary, I will have three buildings plugged into this 10 inch pipe. I don't plan on having any drains in the actual barn for a couple reasons. First, we don't in the existing pig barn, and don't seem to have a problem, and secondly, with sawdust and chaff, drains just clog.

Any gaps in the logic?
Looks can be decieving...but it looks like you have a fairly flat site and you removed the sod and some dirt to start...basically it appears you built a shallow pond..if it is as it appears....if you put in a slab it will always be wet under it...once you establish floor height you live with it forever and the only way to get drainage around the building is pipes or digging down...all I am saying is if you need to raise you floor above the surrounding grades a foot to keep water out of your building now is the time.....a good rain right now would certainly show you if you have problems ....
 
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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
It's one of those Monday's where it's slow getting out of bed. Well, slower than usual. My wife, step-dad, brother and I got a great start on installing posts over the weekend. Only 9 more posts to go. You would think I would be sore from lifting posts, or shoveling. Nope, it's a darn tamping around the posts.

The 4044M on the 18" auger works well. It's a pretty big auger for it. Definitely, need to go slow with it and pull it out to remove the soil from it occasionally after it has been lower into the soil (we call it blasting the auger - there's probably a hundred better terms for it). One note from the auger. If I go to deep in our clay soil, you may have troubles getting the auger out. I didn't have problems, but was quick to make a mental note of it. I am pretty sure if you took that 18" auger and went all the way down to 4 ft in our clay, that 4044M would have it stuck.

It's going to be an interesting week with weather, and other obligations, so we'll see when I get those other posts in. It may be as long as next weekend until they go in. We are supposed to get scattered thunderstorms for the next four days, so I am going to brace up other walls on the east side today. Overall I am happy with the build. Just gotta keep chugging along!

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Looks good from here. Is the center pole on the short wall bent out? Make sure you get that pulled in.

I'd run another girt higher up to help keep things in place. Not critical, but should save you some work later.
 
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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
MDrew: It does look slightly bent. I will check it when I go out there today.
 

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MDrew: It does look slightly bent. I will check it when I go out there today.
last couple of barns i built i had to deal with some twisted poles....makes it a pain for sure ....hard to spot the twist at the lumber yard....you can see and reject bent ones
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
This week is annoying when it comes to rain. We had a LOT in a short amount of time. Roads were covered which I rarely seen covered. I had to return the post hole digger, so I was forced to dig the last remaining holes before I had time to put the posts in. Annoying. As MDrew indicated earlier in the thread, looks like I will be getting the pump out. Two more days of scattered thunderstorms, then the weather looks like sunshine.
 
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This week is annoying when it comes to rain. We had a LOT in a short amount of time. Roads were covered which I rarely seen covered. I had to return the post hole digger, so I was forced to dig the last remaining holes before I had time to put the posts in. Annoying. As MDrew indicated earlier in the thread, looks like I will be getting the pump out. Two more days of scattered thunderstorms, then the weather looks like sunshine.
in the past when we were faced with that kind of issue....we just left the dirt berm from the post hole digger around the hole and tossed a sheet of plywood over the hole to keep it dry till we were ready to set posts......but these days a sheet of plywood is like gold :).......the plywood was also a safety thing to keep things from falling in the hole overnight etc
 

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in the past when we were faced with that kind of issue....we just left the dirt berm from the post hole digger around the hole and tossed a sheet of plywood over the hole to keep it dry till we were ready to set posts......but these days a sheet of plywood is like gold :).......the plywood was also a safety thing to keep things from falling in the hole overnight etc
Did that with our garage build...
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