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New Life For Old Barn
"Now we've got a building we can use. It makes a great machine shed," says Leo Osmek, Glencoe, Minn., who brought his round-roofed dairy barn down a notch, cutting about 6 ft. out of the sides and remounting it on the old foundation.
Osmek explains that the unused dairy barn was of little use to him before the rebuilding job because of its small doors, and the hayloft which restricted entrance to the building because of its low 6 ft. height. About all he could store inside were garden tractors and hand tools. The huge hayloft area went unused. Since the hayloft also provided structural support to the sides and roof of the building, it couldn't be removed without weakening the building.
Osmek hired a South Dakota barn straightening firm Johnson Steel Construction, of Arlington to carry out his plan of cutting out the bottom 6 ft. of the barn and lowering it to the ground. The sides were refastened to the foundation and the hayloft floor cut out completely. Then, since the shingles on the roof needed replacing, Osmek had the company redo the roof with metal sheeting, and the sides with metal siding. He cut off the overhang on the end of the barn in order to hang large 16-ft. doors.
"The resulting building makes perfect storage for large machinery and will be practically maintenance-free. It took the crew just 2 weeks and they did a good job," Osmek told FARM SHOW. "Inside, we simply knocked out the old stanchions and concrete curbs and pushed the broken pieces into the gutter to make a level floor."
Total cost of the conversion came to about $10,000. "That's less than half the cost of a new building and it has much more space. The building is extremely strong and should last practically forever. There are thousands of barns on farms that no longer have cattle that could use this idea," says Osmek.
For more information on the cornpany that did the barn-lowering job for the Osmeks, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Johnson Steel Construction, P.O. Box 345, Arlington, S. Dak. 57212 (ph 605 983-3372).


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1984 - Volume #8, Issue #4