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Family Converts Grain Bin Into A Unique Home
What was once a 36 ft. dia., 21,000 bu. Unico grain bin on the John and Carol Ferguson farmstead is now a beautiful 4-story home "home in the round."
The Fergusons, of Sonora, Kty., along with their children, Charles, Teresa and Glynda, started building their home five years ago. They tore down the bin, originally built in 1965, section by section, moved it to the current site and started rebuilding it into their new home.
"You really don't realize that you're living inside a grain bin," says Carol. "The only clues that it was once a bin are the rounded outside walls and the roof. "
The new home has four floors. The basement has the furnace, laundry room and Carol's office. The first floor, which is also at ground level, has the kitchen, dining room, living room and master bedroom. The next floor has three bedrooms and two bathrooms while the top floor is John's office.
In building the top floor they raised the roof 32-in. and put in 8 windows at the top to provide a panoramic view of the surrounding countryside.
"During construction we built the chimney so it runs right through the middle of our home and out through the spout hole at the top of the bin. This way it also acts as as a floor support at each level," says Carol.
"We also super-insulated the walls and tried to get an R-40 value. In reassembling the bin sections, we put silicone along the seams to seal the cracks tight. We inserted insulation between the bin walls and the inside wood walls, and put a 1-in. layer of thick foam on the outside of the bin. We put granite field rock on the outside of the foam to decorate the exterior. Actually, our home's so well insulated that now we have to pull fresh air in. Our total heating cost last winter was right at $250," Carol notes.
The grain bin home now stands about 30-ft. tall and rests on a poured concrete foundation that's about 12 in. wider than the bin.
There have been well over 200 curious visitors to the Ferguson's "home in the round". "The most frequent comment is about how much larger the house is inside than what appears from the outside. Others note the easy placement of furniture and the absence of what they expected to be pie-shaped rooms. We've had many tell us they'd like to buy our æhome in the round' if we ever decide to sell," John told FARM SHOW. He adds that "visitors are always welcome."
Would they do it again?
"Of course, but we like our unique home and have no plans to sell it," answers John.
For more information, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, John and Carol Ferguson, 5012 Sonora Hardin Spring Rd., Sonora, Kty 42776 (ph 502 369-7350).

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1987 - Volume #11, Issue #4