Category Archives: Pole Barn Structure

Builder Says

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/11/25 @ 8:00
Builder Says

Builder Says, “These designs are the Worse”! Like all good stories begin….. “It was a dark and stormy night” Oops, wrong beginning! Once upon a time I was a post frame building contractor. From 1991 until 1999 my construction company could only have been described as being prolific – at one time we had as […]

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Designing a Dream Barndominium Loft

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/11/24 @ 8:00
Designing a Dream Barndominium Loft

Designing a Dream Barndominium Loft Reader BRIAN in PETOSKY writes: “ Hi Mike, Mindi told me to email you my lofted floor question for our project. To avoid messing with truss-support floors, we were planning to build a full 26×60 main barn with scissor trusses the full length. Then on one end, we would make […]

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What Hansen Pole Buildings Offers for Prospective Barndominium Owners

What Hansen Pole Buildings Offers for Prospective Barndominium Owners If you are considering building a barndominium or shouse (shop/house), whether DIY or with a contractor’s involvement, there is one very important question to ask: “Do you personally live in a barndominium?” If you do not receive a resounding, “YES” for an answer, you may want […]

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Required Bracing or Not?

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/11/03 @ 8:00
Required Bracing or Not?

When he was just a tyke (I considered adding in ‘little’ however he was 3’6” tall on his second birthday) my son Brent asked me in all seriousness what it was like to watch space aliens building pyramids. While I am not quite as old as Brent may have thought I was then, it has […]

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Questionably Designed Steel Truss Pole Barns

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/10/28 @ 8:00
Questionably Designed Steel Truss Pole Barns

Being a member of numerous social media discussion groups, I see a plethora of photos of people’s new (or under construction) steel trussed post frame buildings. Most of these buildings are from Southeastern states where it appears structural building permits and plan checks are minimal or non-existent. This results in my receiving emails like this […]

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Blower Door Testing Your New Barndominium Part II

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/10/23 @ 8:00
Blower Door Testing Your New Barndominium Part II

Continued from yesterday’s blog; Aside from code compliance or indoor air quality concerns, another reason to get a blower door test is to properly size your furnace or air conditioner. How leaky or tight your barndominium is can change how much heating/humidification or cooling/dehumidification you need. This then ties into how carefully your mechanical system […]

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Posts and Collars, Girts, and Non-Vented Soffits

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/10/12 @ 8:00
Posts and Collars, Girts, and Non-Vented Soffits

This week’s edition of Pole Barn Guru visits the topics of post and footing sizes, bookshelf girts for drywall, and non-vented soffits for building with spray foam insulation. DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I am currently 68 but I built pole barns as a younger man the biggest being a hay barn 24′ eaves X 80 […]

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Avoiding Being Driven Crazy With Barndominium Questions Part II

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/10/08 @ 8:00
Avoiding Being Driven Crazy With Barndominium Questions Part II

Part II of a two part series. If you didn’t see Part I, go back one day. Mike’s answers are in italics.  In each house at ends of the “L” layout, I plan to have 1/3 open plan at two stories, for our great room, with nice windows for great views. The other 2/3 areas […]

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Post Frame Home Zero Barrier Entry Over a Crawl Space

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/10/02 @ 8:00
Post Frame Home Zero Barrier Entry Over a Crawl Space

Post Frame Home Zero Barrier Entry Over a Crawl Space Reader MARC in AUBURN writes: “I am asking what might be an odd question, but I need to ask it to see if it is even an option. Is it possible to build a post frame home with part of it having a concrete floor […]

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Pressure Treated Post Frame Building Poles Rot

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/09/17 @ 8:00
Pressure Treated Post Frame Building Poles Rot

Presenting actual factual evidence, from a peer reviewed and published study seems to have little bearing upon reality in today’s social media influenced world. Instead, people tend to rely heavily upon those with a vested (financial) interest in promotion of something other than actual and factual truth. Those invested interests vary from those selling alternatives […]

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Checks and Splits in Post Frame Lumber

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/09/16 @ 8:00
Checks and Splits in Post Frame Lumber

Checks and splits in lumber and timbers, especially timbers, are often misunderstood when assessing a structure’s condition. Checks and splits can form in wood by two means: during seasoning, or drying, and during manufacture. This article is concerned with checks and splits resulting from seasoning after installation.  Development of checks and splits after installation occurs […]

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DIY Post Frame Construction and Winch Boxes

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/09/11 @ 8:00
DIY Post Frame Construction and Winch Boxes

Loyal reader and Hansen Pole Buildings’ client BOB in MOSINEE writes: “Hello Mike, This weekend I’m going to begin construction on my Hansen pole building. Very excited. You guys have been great to work with. I had originally planned to have one built by one of the bigger named companies, but after seeing what they […]

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Helping a Student with His Post Frame Thesis

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/09/10 @ 8:00
Helping a Student with His Post Frame Thesis

Post frame buildings are becoming more relevant as a design solution for residential construction. I recently was contacted to assist a student and will let him tell his story: “My name is George xxxxxx, I am currently a thesis student at Auburn University’s Rural Studio, located in Hale County, Alabama. I am looking into pole […]

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SIP Floor Panels, Stack-able Hanger Doors, and Sliding Door Installation

This Monday the Pole Barn Guru answers reader questions about installing a SIP floor instead of concrete, stack-able hanger doors for addition, and rough cuts on some sliding door lateral braces. DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I am considering installing SIP floor in my pole barn instead of a concrete floor (the barn will be a […]

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Top Chord Repair, Little Voices, and Building Use

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/08/31 @ 8:00
Top Chord Repair, Little Voices, and Building Use

Today the Pole Barn Guru tackles questions about repairing a rotted top chord of an existing truss, a little voice in a contractor’s head, and the use of an existing building on newly purchased parcel. DEAR POLE BARN GURU: When we bought our property the pole barn on it already had a rotting roof with […]

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Skylights in Barn You Built for Us Need Replacing

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/08/28 @ 8:00
Skylights in Barn You Built for Us Need Replacing

Skylights in Barn You Built for us Need Replacing Reader MICHELLE in ASTORIA writes: “Hello! You built our barn located in Astoria, Oregon. The sky lights that were installed now need to be replaced. My husband called and was told you’d get back to us with no response. We are hoping to either hire you […]

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Building Department Checklist 2020 Part II

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/08/26 @ 8:00
Building Department Checklist 2020 Part II

Yesterday I covered seven of what I feel are 14 most important questions to ask your local building department.  This not only will smooth your way through permitting processes, but also ensures a solid and safe building structure. Let’s talk about these last seven…. #8 What is accepted Allowable Soil Bearing Capacity? This will be […]

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Stick Frame and Some Limitations

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/08/06 @ 11:00
Stick Frame and Some Limitations

Stick Frame and Some Limitations Perhaps stick built construction’s biggest advantage is builders and tradespeople are very comfortable working in and around stick framing. All registered architects and most building inspectors are very familiar with stick framing. The International Residential Code (IRC) provides a prescriptive ‘cook book’ to follow for adequate structural assembly, within certain limitations. […]

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Stick Framing?

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/08/05 @ 8:00
Stick Framing?

Stick Framing? A continuing debate, in picking a structural system for a new barndominium, is what is going to be best? Due to years of conditioning, many assume a traditional wood framed, stick built barndominium, assembled on site is what will be right.  Granted, stick built houses, with traditional wood framing, are by far America’s […]

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Subcontractors for Your Barndominium

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/07/24 @ 8:00
Subcontractors for Your Barndominium

Welcome – you are maybe here because you have followed my biggest money saving tip in building a new barndominium, you are acting as your own General Contractor. If you are not yet convinced, please take a brief pause to jump back to: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2020/02/does-my-barndominium-need-a-turn-key-general-contractor/. There are those who have time and patience (or skills) to […]

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Safely Erecting Post Frame Buildings

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/07/03 @ 8:00
Safely Erecting Post Frame Buildings

Safely Erecting Post Frame Buildings Most post frame buildings can be easily erected DIY (do it yourself) by an average physically capable person who can and will read instructions. In fact, most DIY post frame buildings turn out far nicer (in quality of workmanship) than those done by professional builders – because as a building […]

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Barndominium Drywall Cracks

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/06/09 @ 8:00
Barndominium Drywall Cracks

You have just moved into your beautiful new barndominium, shouse or post frame home. Your drywall was painted and looked perfect for months and then you start to see seams cracking and screw heads popping through. Our first inclination is to blame whoever installed it. It is possible drywall was installed incorrectly leading to screw […]

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Cutting Barn Trusses

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/05/28 @ 8:00
Cutting Barn Trusses

Just a Little Nip Here, Tuck There As so many of us have entered an age of Covid-19 binge television watching, I can imagine there are more than a few who have consumed calories while watching 100 episodes of Nip/Tuck (originally aired on FX from 2003-2010). While nipping and tucking can solve many human cosmetic […]

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Ganging Up Barndominium Roof Trusses

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/05/05 @ 8:00
Ganging Up Barndominium Roof Trusses

Hansen Pole Buildings’ client (and quickly becoming our good friend) Brett and his lovely bride are self-building their new barndominium at Cumberland Furnace, Tennessee.  For those who are like me and rely upon front seat navigator with a GPS on her phone to get anywhere – Brett is mostly West and slightly North of Nashville, […]

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Worldwide Steel Buildings or Post Frame?

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/04/29 @ 8:00
Worldwide Steel Buildings or Post Frame?

Loyal reader STEPHEN in AUSTIN writes: “Mike –  I am so thankful for all the info you and your company have provided over the years. Your experience and knowledge have helped so many.  I especially love your promotion of bookshelf girts.  Every time I see a building framed within a building, I ask why?  Bookshelf […]

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Low E Barndominium Windows

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/04/28 @ 8:00
Low E Barndominium Windows

Being a life-long baseball fan, my first introduction to “Low e”, was former Mariner, Ranger, Angel, Indian, Blue Jay and Tiger relief pitcher Mark Lowe, who could chuck a rock as high as 101 miles per hour! OK, not so funny, but it does illustrate how little I (and most people) knew or understand about […]

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Footers, Building Over Old Pool, and Home Made Glu-Lams

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/04/27 @ 8:00
Footers, Building Over Old Pool, and Home Made Glu-Lams

This week the Pole Barn Guru answers questions about need for a “footer,” building over an old pool, and the efficacy or viability of building ones own glulaminated posts. DEAR POLE BARN GURU: You have most likely answered this question before. I don’t seem to be able to find it. I am thinking about building a […]

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Post Frame Purlin Blocking

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/04/23 @ 8:00
Post Frame Purlin Blocking

Every time I begin to rest on my laurels and think I have covered all post frame (pole barn) building basics up jumps yet another one to bite me where I deserve to be bitten due to my overlooking it. Our independent drafting team at Hansen Pole Buildings (thanks Kristie) came up with this question […]

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Creating Extra Work in Barndominium Framing

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/04/09 @ 8:00
Creating Extra Work in Barndominium Framing

Creating Extra Work In Barndominium Framing A supposed downside of post frame (pole barn) buildings for barndominiums is having to frame a wall inside of an exterior wall in order to create an insulation cavity and a way to support interior finishes. This myth is created and propagated by post frame kit suppliers and post […]

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A Miracle Cure to Prevent Twisted Timber Columns

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/04/08 @ 8:00
A Miracle Cure to Prevent Twisted Timber Columns

A Miracle Cure to Prevent Twisted Timber Columns In 1960 Chubby Checker did a cover of Hank Ballard and the Midnighters 1959 song “The Twist”. Checker’s cover reached Number One on Billboard’s Hot 100 both in 1960 and again in 1962, becoming the only single to reach number one in two different chart runs. While […]

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Spray Foam Insulation and Steel Roofing and Siding

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/04/03 @ 8:00
Spray Foam Insulation and Steel Roofing and Siding

Spray Foam Insulation and Steel Roofing and Siding  Energy efficiency is a hot (pun intended) for steel roofed and/or sided post frame buildings, especially with a rise in popularity of barndominiums and shouses. Spray foam insulation systems have been a product of choice to achieve highly efficient building envelopes. Of course with this, have come […]

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Hi, I Should be an Engineer

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/04/01 @ 8:00
Hi, I Should be an Engineer

Hi, I Should Be an Engineer. Can You Tell Me What I Left Out? Seemingly every Spring I receive an email similar to this one from JOHN in UNION DALE, who it sadly appears has not done much (if any) homework in reading my articles. JOHN writes: “ Hi, I have been doing a couple […]

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A Post Frame House Photo

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/03/19 @ 8:00
A Post Frame House Photo

A Post Frame House Photo – and More Post frame buildings are amazing, after four decades in this industry I am still amazed at what can be accomplished with them. We are just now barely scuffing surfaces of a burgeoning residential housing market! I will begin with a disclaimer, this is not a Hansen Pole […]

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Adding Overhangs, Building Replacement, and Moving a Structure

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/03/16 @ 8:00
Adding Overhangs, Building Replacement, and Moving a Structure

Today the Pole Barn Guru assists with questions about adding an overhang to an existing structure, replacing two buildings on site, and moving an existing structure. DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Hi I just saw your blog posts on the web and wanted to ask you my barn has no overhang on the ends and when […]

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Snow Retention in Building Codes

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/03/13 @ 8:00
Snow Retention in Building Codes

For all of my friends in locales where it does not snow, you are welcome to take a nap through this article. For those of us who are seriously tired of winter, but choose to endure shovels and plows, please read on. Now snow retention is a subject well ignored by probably everyone you are […]

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Beginning a Shouse Journey in Washington State Part I

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/03/11 @ 8:00
Beginning a Shouse Journey in Washington State Part I

A shouse (shop/house), barndominium or post frame house project may seem daunting, however by doing lots of reading, research and asking questions, an average individual can craft for themselves a home they love, tailored to meet their family’s wants and needs. Loyal reader ROBERT in OLYMPIA writes: “Hello to the Pole Barn Guru or whoever […]

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A Mezzanine for Your Barndominium

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/03/10 @ 8:00
A Mezzanine for Your Barndominium

A mezzanine is a common design feature found in all types of buildings- very possibly even your new barndominium, shouse or post frame home. Think of a mezzanine as being a lofted area above a room. International Building Codes outline some basic rules for mezzanines to help determine if it is an intermediate level within […]

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SIPS for Barndominiums

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/02/28 @ 8:00
SIPS for Barndominiums

It has only been five years since I first opined about using SIPs for post frame building construction: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2015/02/sips/. Since then, post frame homes (frequently referred to as barndominiums) have become quite the rage. Easily half of Hansen Pole Buildings’ inquiries are now for some combination of living space! I had recently done some further […]

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What Makes Some Buildings Better Than Others

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/02/27 @ 8:00
What Makes Some Buildings Better Than Others

I answer literally hundreds of building related questions every day. These questions come from many different sources – our staff, drafts people, engineers, architects, building officials, clients, builders and social media (just to name a few). This question, posted in a Facebook group, is an exceptional one and I felt it necessary to share: “What […]

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Things Roof Truss Manufacturers Should Ask

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/02/26 @ 8:00
Things Roof Truss Manufacturers Should Ask

Things Roof Truss Manufacturers SHOULD Ask, But Don’t Always I didn’t just fall off of a turnip truck yesterday, even though there are a few who may doubt my claim! Prefabricated metal plate connected wood trusses and I became close friends back in April of 1977. Yes, we had electricity then and no, I did […]

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Barndominium on a Daylight Basement

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/02/20 @ 8:00
Barndominium on a Daylight Basement

As post frame construction moves into a world filled with barndominiums, shouses and homes, there are of course those who would prefer (or need due to lot slope) to build upon either a full or partial (daylight) basement. Post frame buildings are ideal for this situation. Reader LOUIE writes: “Hi, I just started the process […]

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A Barndominium Can Be a Carbon Storage Warehouse

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/02/14 @ 8:00
A Barndominium Can Be a Carbon Storage Warehouse

Designed right, your new barndominium can help prevent global warming. By utilization of a wooden post frame structure, rather than steel or concrete, carbon can be stored (like a warehouse), rather than being released into our planet’s atmosphere. The carbon cycle demonstrates various phases of carbon through living things, soil, water and atmosphere. If carbon […]

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Working With a Building Official for Footing Design

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/02/12 @ 8:00
Working With a Building Official for Footing Design

Working With a Building Official for footing designs Long time readers have read me opine on how Building Officials are our friends: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2012/04/i-like-building-officials/ One of our clients recently received this email from his Building Official and shared it with me (red added by me): “The Town of xxxx stopped plan review on your project because […]

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Barndominium Brick Wainscot

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/02/04 @ 8:00
Barndominium Brick Wainscot

Actual Brick Considerations for Barndominium Wainscot With post frame buildings becoming a ‘rage’ for use as homes, barndominiums and shouse (shop/houses) alternatives to dress them up are quickly arising. Amongst these options are clients looking to have actual brick wainscot, as opposed to using a different color of steel siding, thin brick, or other cultured […]

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Floor Trusses for Barndominiums

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/01/28 @ 8:00
Floor Trusses for Barndominiums

In my last article I discussed limiting deflection for barndominium floors. Today I will take this one step further with a floor truss design solution. Most of us don’t think too much about floors we walk upon – unless they are not level, squeak when we walk on them, or are too bouncy. Traditionally wood […]

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Barndominium Wood Floors

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/01/24 @ 8:00
Barndominium Wood Floors

Barndominiums, shouses (shop/houses) and post frame homes have become a true ‘thing’. As they have developed from bootlegged boxes to serious planning being given to them, there has been a rise in people wanting them over full or partial basements, crawl spaces and multiple floors. In nearly every case, these floors are made of wood […]

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Ganged Wood Trusses & Closed Cell Spray Foam Post Frame Condensation Control

Ganged Wood Trusses and Closed Cell Spray Foam Post Frame Condensation Control Ganged wood trusses are most usually two individually fabricated metal connector plated roof trusses, fastened together with either nails or even better Simpson Drive Screws (https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2017/03/simpson-drive-screws/), so they work together as a conjoined pair. True doubled trusses (not two single trusses spaced apart […]

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Putting Everything Under One Post Frame Roof

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/01/15 @ 8:00
Putting Everything Under One Post Frame Roof

Putting Everything Under One Post Frame Roof I have been an advocate of one larger roof, rather than an enclosed building with a roof only side shed for years. This allows for greater headroom in ‘shed’ area without having to deal with pitch breaks (transition from a steeper slope main roof to a flatter shed […]

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What Is Keeping Posts Above Ground Worth?

Posted by polebarnguru on 20/01/10 @ 8:00
What Is Keeping Posts Above Ground Worth?

What is Something Worth? I can be overly anal. Sometimes I have to really work hard to get around it – I purposefully have conundrums on my desk and for some perverse reason I feel comfortable in them.  I inherited my maternal grandmother’s counting gene. Even into her nineties, if I called her up and […]

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Jai Alai Court

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/12/27 @ 8:00
Jai Alai Court

Jai Alai Court In my now rapidly approaching 40 year career in and around post frame buildings, I have covered lots and lots of very diverse things. These have included train and trolley car refurbishing, Las Vegas zoo’s giraffe barn, a United States Marine Corps rifle range, steer roping, basketball and volleyball courts, baseball batting […]

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Building a Barndominium on an Existing Concrete Slab

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/12/26 @ 8:00
Building a Barndominium on an Existing Concrete Slab

Building a Barndominium on an Existing Concrete Slab Whether a simple pole barn or an elaborate barndominium, shouse or post frame home, there are some challenges when it comes to constructing on an existing concrete slab on grade. Reader NATHAN from PITTSFORD began this article when he wrote:  “I have a 28x 80 foot pad. […]

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A Shouse in the News

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/12/25 @ 8:00
A Shouse in the News

A Shouse in the News! Casual readers might not understand what a shouse even is. My lovely bride and I happen to reside in an 8000 square foot shouse (combination shop and house) in Northeast South Dakota. (The shouse in this article is not our house.) Whether shouse, barndominium or merely post frame (pole barn) […]

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Prefabricated Endwall Trusses

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/12/24 @ 8:00
Prefabricated Endwall Trusses

Most post frame (pole) buildings use prefabricated wood roof trusses to support their roof systems. Luckily (as well) most of these also use a truss on each endwall, rather than having crews (or unsuspecting DIYers) cobbling together rafters onsite. As a former owner of two prefabricated metal connector plated truss companies for 17 years, this […]

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Spray Foam for Barndominiums

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/12/20 @ 8:00
Spray Foam for Barndominiums

Spray Foam for Barndominiums – Is a Thermal or Ignition Barrier Required? Although it’s certainly not used in every green building project, spray foam insulation has become a popular way to build an air-tight (https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2019/11/airtight-post-frame-homes-and-barndominiums/) barndominium, shouse (shop/house) or even just a well-insulated post frame building. Early on building codes hadn’t caught up with how […]

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Concrete: Cured or Dried?

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/12/19 @ 8:00
Concrete: Cured or Dried?

Concrete: Cured or Dried? Recently I posted an article in regards to finishing a concrete slab-on-grade. I admit to knowing slightly more about concrete than I do about plumbing. Muy poquito – one of the few Spanish terms I can actually pronounce (and have used all too frequently when visiting South America). For those of […]

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Lumberyards-Don’t Burst Customer’s Dreams

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/12/18 @ 8:00
Lumberyards-Don’t Burst Customer’s Dreams

Lumberyards – Don’t Burst Customer’s Dreams A week or so ago I was contacted in regards to a 42 wide by 48 foot long 12 foot eave post frame (pole) building kit. This person had actually ‘purchased’ this building from a vendor local to him for just over 12,000 dollars with steel roofing and siding, […]

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Horizontal Sheeting, Framing for Insulation, and Alternative Siding

Today the Pole Barn Guru answers questions about overlapping horizontal sheets of steel, the best plan for framing to insulate, and best way to install vinyl lap siding on a post frame building. DEAR POLE BARN GURU: When installing horizontal sheeting, does the top sheet always cover the bottom sheet when joined? GARY in EUFAULA […]

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Post Frame Standards or Extras?

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/12/05 @ 8:00
Post Frame Standards or Extras?

On Facebook I am a member of a discussion group for Pole and Post frame building professionals only. Recently one of our group members posed a question, “What are the extras you do to set yourself apart”? It was only then I realized there are some significant differences between a Hansen Pole Building and other […]

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Post Frame Condensation and Insulation Challenge

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/12/04 @ 8:00
Post Frame Condensation and Insulation Challenge

Solving Yet Another Post Frame Condensation and Insulation Challenge Long time loyal readers will sigh as yet another post frame building has been erected without thoughts to how to properly insulate and control condensation. Had our new friend invested in a Hansen Pole Building, chances are good we would not be having this question and […]

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Tstud for Post Frame Bookshelf Wall Girts

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/12/03 @ 8:00
Tstud for Post Frame Bookshelf Wall Girts

Tstud™ for Post Frame Bookshelf Wall Girts I have been somewhat enamored of Tstuds’ potential since one of our clients asked if they would be a viable option last summer. First I had to find out what a Tstud even was, as I had never heard of them before. Once you skip past ads at […]

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Structural Screws? Pine or Spruce? and How Many Windows?

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/12/02 @ 8:00
Structural Screws? Pine or Spruce? and How Many Windows?

Today’s Pole Barn Guru addresses questions regarding structural screws for bearing blocks, the strength of pine vs spruce, and adding more windows than plans indicate. DEAR POLE BARN GURU: How many structural screws should I use in a bearing block for supporting a 2×12 rafter? KENT in OTIS ORCHARDS DEAR KENT: In case you were […]

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Flashing Wires and Pipes Through Steel Siding

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/11/28 @ 8:00
Flashing Wires and Pipes Through Steel Siding

Flashing Wires and Pipes Through Steel Siding There are some things one just does not give a lot of thought about and this subject is one where I am entirely negligent. My post frame buildings outside of Spokane are both sided with 1×8 Cedar channel. While it looks great, I would never do it against […]

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Why Not Use 6×6 or 8×8 Posts Up North?

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/11/22 @ 8:00
Why Not Use 6×6 or 8×8 Posts Up North?

Reader DARRELL in LUCEVILLE asked this question and included photo below. While this photo is not of a Hansen Pole Building, I can comment upon it. Featured in this building photo are glulaminated columns – they are a great product, high strength to weight ratio, straight, highly resistant to warp and twist. They are strong […]

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My Barndominium Windows Are Leaking

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/11/19 @ 8:00
My Barndominium Windows Are Leaking

Common questions we hear from barndominium, shouse (shop/house) and post frame home owners are, “Why are my new windows leaking?” or “Why do I have condensation inside of my windows?” In fact, many new barndominium owners think their windows are defective and need to be replaced in an effort to cure this problem. To answer […]

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Tear Down and Move, Stitching Roof Steel, Foundation Size

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/11/04 @ 8:00
Tear Down and Move, Stitching Roof Steel, Foundation Size

Today’s Pole Barn Guru answers questions about the chance Hansen Buildings will “tear down pole barns and move them for people, too?…”, stitching the overlap on steel roofing, and what happens to foundations when adding a second floor to a “Barndo.”  DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Do you tear down pole barns and move them for […]

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Checks and Splits in Post Frame Timbers

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/10/30 @ 8:00
Checks and Splits in Post Frame Timbers

Checks and Splits in Post Frame Timbers Checks and splits in post frame timbers (wall columns) are often misunderstood when assessing a structure’s condition. There are two means where checks and splits can form in wood elements: during seasoning, or drying, and during manufacture. Development of checks and splits after installation occurs after wall columns […]

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Placing Purlins Overhanging Lowered End Truss

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/10/29 @ 8:00
Placing Purlins Overhanging Lowered End Truss

Properly Placing Post Frame Building Purlins Overhanging Lowered End Truss Even professional post frame building erectors have challenges with concepts like properly placing purlins when they overhang a lowered end truss.  What could be so difficult, one might ask, you just space them the same as all other purlins, right? Well, sort of. End trusses, […]

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What DP Ratings Mean for Post Frame Windows and Doors

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/10/25 @ 8:00
What DP Ratings Mean for Post Frame Windows and Doors

Let’s start with a definition of Design Pressure. According to AAMA (American Architectural Manufacturers Association), WDMA (Window and Door Manufacturers Association), and NAFS (North American Fenestration Standard), Design Pressure (DP) is a rating identifying loads induced by wind and/or static snow a product is rated to withstand in its end-use application. So basically, DP is […]

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Typical Wall Bracing Details for Pole Barns

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/10/22 @ 8:00
Typical Wall Bracing Details for Pole Barns

There are many ways to permanently brace walls of pole barn (post frame) buildings. Most of these methods are utilized in buildings not designed by a Registered Professional Engineer (RDP). A RDP who has a great deal of experience with post frame building intricacies would first be looking at a structural design to utilize steel […]

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Hansen Buildings Instant Pricing

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/10/10 @ 8:00
Hansen Buildings Instant Pricing

Hansen Pole Buildings’ Instant Pricing Program™ Back in 1980, when I was first exposed to pole barns, in order to give a potential client a price quote, I had to do a manual breakdown of all of the components necessary to assemble their building. Luckily, most buildings were fairly simple rectangular boxes, but it was […]

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Volatile Organic Compound Ratios

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/10/08 @ 8:00
Volatile Organic Compound Ratios

Volatile Organic Compound Ratios Today’s guest blogger is Cheryl Barneski. Cheryl’s background is as an Owner Operator Long Haul Division of the Class 8 Industry. CDL END X or HazMat and Tanks. She is a Certified Hole Watch, Lock Out, Tag Out Safety Watch in Chemical Plants and is also Certified Entry Level I.S.O Meter […]

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Barn Conversions, Raising a Building, and Pole Barns on Concrete Slabs

Today’s Pole Barn Guru discusses a possible conversion of an old pole barn, raising a building, and how site preparation helps with concrete slabs. DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Have a 40’ x 100’, 2 sides enclosed, pole barn I would like to convert to a house / garage combo. Columns are 20’ on center in […]

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Tipping Up Post Frame Walls

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/10/04 @ 8:00
Tipping Up Post Frame Walls

Reader JIMMY in ROCK HILL writes: “I want to get your opinion on the pole barn building method seen in the linked video. (RR buildings) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fVwUl4cm8fQ I am impressed at the built in efficiency of his process. Is there a benefit to his post ground connection, (i am aware that his method will use lots […]

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Pre-construction Termite Treatment

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/09/26 @ 8:00
Pre-construction Termite Treatment

Why would anyone building a pole barn, barndominium, shouse or post frame home need to be concerned about treating for termites? Isn’t pressure preservative treated wood going to solve any potential long range problems from pesky termites? Regardless of whether you build a post frame (pole) building, stick frame, steel frame or even concrete building […]

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Torn Between Two Lovers

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/09/24 @ 8:00
Torn Between Two Lovers

In reader JEREMY from GOSHEN’s case, he is torn between two methods of post frame construction, rather than one hit wonder Mary MacGregor’s 1976 tune “Torn Between Two Lovers”.  JEREMY wrote, “I’m torn between trusses on 4′ centers and what you do the double trusses every 10 or 12”. Mike the Pole Barn Guru says: […]

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Yet Another Case for Engineered Buildings

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/09/19 @ 8:00
Yet Another Case for Engineered Buildings

Yet Another Case for Engineered Buildings (The six photos at https://www.hudsonvalley360.com/article/construction-resumes-following-barn-collapse are essential to this story) In case you are wondering why I rail so loudly about building permit agricultural exemptions for buildings, these photos (look at bases of columns) should quell any wonderment. https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2011/12/exempt-agricultural-buildings/ From a September 2, 2019 article by Amanda Purcell at […]

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Responsibilities Where the Legal Requirements Mandate

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/09/17 @ 8:00
Responsibilities Where the Legal Requirements Mandate

Responsibilities where the Legal Requirements Mandate a Registered Design Professional for Buildings (Section 2.3 of ANSI/TPI 1) MPC is Metal-Plate-Connected; RDP is Registered Design Professional (architect or engineer). “In preparation for specifying MPC wood trusses, every section of Chapter 2 and ANSI/TPI 1-2007 (NOTE: ANSI/TPI 1-2014 retains same language) standard should be carefully studied by […]

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11 Reasons Post Frame Commercial Girted Walls Are Best for Drywall

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/09/13 @ 8:01
11 Reasons Post Frame Commercial Girted Walls Are Best for Drywall

11 Ways Post Frame Commercial Girted Walls are Best for Drywall Call it what you want, drywall, gypsum wallboard even Sheetrock® (registered brand of www.usg.com) and most English speaking adults know what you are talking about. In post frame (pole) building construction, wall girts (horizontal version of studs) are placed in bookshelf fashion, resisting wind […]

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Planning for Lighting in a New Pole Barn

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/09/06 @ 8:00
Planning for Lighting in a New Pole Barn

Both of my post frame buildings outside of Spokane, WA have no windows on the garage/shop level. This means when inside, with doors closed, it is dark – one is forced to rely upon electricity or radar to navigate. Reader KRISTI is preparing to build her new pole barn and had some questions about how […]

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An Avoidable Building Failure

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/09/05 @ 8:00
An Avoidable Building Failure

I had already begun working on this article when I saw on Facebook a great post frame prefabricated wood roof truss setting video (https://www.facebook.com/ruralrenovators/videos/2443278165738995/) posted by Kyle Stumpenhorst of Rural Renovators, LLC (https://rrbuildings.com/). This is not a paid endorsement for Kyle – however I do believe Kyle really cares about doing a job right. If […]

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How to Order Lumber for a New Pole Building

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/09/04 @ 8:00
How to Order Lumber for a New Pole Building

This is Wrong in So Many Ways There is nothing wrong about trying to get the best deal for one’s investment. How do you think wealthy people got wealthy? Most of them didn’t just fall into money, they worked to get the best deals for their money spent. However, sometimes, it just doesn’t pay. Recently, […]

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Solutions to Porch Overhang Clearance Issues

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/08/28 @ 8:00
Solutions to Porch Overhang Clearance Issues

Recently KIM in STRATFORD posted this question to a Facebook Barndominium discussion group I am a member of: “I am trying to finalize my plans today. Is it possible to have 8′ side walls and still have a 6′ overhang open porch on the eave side of the house? I have a 5/12 pitch on […]

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North to Alaska

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/08/15 @ 8:00
North to Alaska

While Alaska is America’s last great frontier, it doesn’t mean when we go North, we throw proper structural design out of a window. Reader CRAIG in WILLOW has more challenges going on than he has dreamed. He writes: “Hello, I’m building a 42Wx50D pole barn. I have 6×6 columns spaced 10’ apart on more than […]

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Fire Rated Spray Foam Insulation

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/08/14 @ 8:00
Fire Rated Spray Foam Insulation

Spray foam insulation has become increasing popular for achieving high R value building shells. One downside of spray foams has been they are not being fire resistant. I was pretty excited to read this on a post frame building contractor’s website: “Installing foam insulation can either be sprayed or foamed-in-place. Foam has the ability to create an […]

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Does an IRC Design Work for Most Residences?

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/08/13 @ 8:00
Does an IRC Design Work for Most Residences?

In my humble opinion (and in one word) – no. I have opined in past articles as to what Code is applicable to post frame (pole) building construction: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2018/10/what-building-code-applies-to-post-frame-construction/. Recently Louisiana engineer Steve M. Sylvest (www.sylvestengineering.com ) sent an email to Structural Building Components Association addressing challenges with non-engineered structures, particularly residences. Again, I stand […]

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What an Engineer of Record Does for a Post Frame Building Part II

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/08/09 @ 8:00
What an Engineer of Record Does for a Post Frame Building Part II

Continued from yesterday’s blog, an article by Jesse Lohse in SBC Magazine:   System Design Understand Load Path Gravity Lateral Uplift MEP conflicts Initial Designs Roof System Walls Floor System(s) Foundation Broad Analysis for construction documents System Design Once an initial conceptual design is complete, an engineer will turn their attention to system design in […]

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Ever Wonder What a Post Frame Engineer Does? Part I

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/08/08 @ 8:00
Ever Wonder What a Post Frame Engineer Does? Part I

I have been pooh-poohed on occasion for my insistence every post frame building (or barndominium) should have an engineer involved. Very few potential building owners understand what it is an engineer does or how they are adding value to a particular project.  To follow, in its entirety, is an article by Jess Lohse, originally published […]

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More Thoughts on Polyurethane Foam

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/07/25 @ 8:00
More Thoughts on Polyurethane Foam

More Thoughts on High Density Polyurethane Foam for Column Backfill Reader STEPHEN contributes a question regarding high density polyurethane foam for column backfill: “Hello, I have this question I would like to pass along to the “pole barn Guru” to be answered, I doubt I will get the answer I need in the time frame, […]

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Considering the Differences Between Closed and Open Cell Spray foam

Originally published by: Fine Homebuilding — May 21, 2016 by Mr. Rob Yagid, a former editor at Fine Homebuilding. Excerpted from Mr. Rob Yagid’s article with contributions from ABTG Staff. The following article was produced and published by the source linked to above, who is solely responsible for its content. The Pole Barn Guru™ is publishing this story to raise awareness […]

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When Attic Insulation is Baffling

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/07/19 @ 8:00
When Attic Insulation is Baffling

Proper insulation provisions seem to be one of the least considered items when it comes to post frame (pole building) planning. Here is a case in point from reader JOHN in BEND: “We have just built a 32’ x 48’ pole building with commercial GIRT construction, metal siding, 4/12 pitch metal roof, concrete floor, 12 […]

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One Pour Pole Barn Post Installation

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/07/17 @ 8:00
One Pour Pole Barn Post Installation

Reader AARON from CARTHAGE writes: “Curious to see your thoughts on the Pro-footer one pour bracket. Would attaching these brackets to the post compromise the pressure treating leading to a chance of rot? I’ve seen their footer cages and their uplift brackets but these seem to be a better choice provided they don’t compromise the […]

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Hiring an Engineer is Terrible Advice?

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/07/12 @ 8:00
Hiring an Engineer is Terrible Advice?

Registered Design Professionals and Building Officials please weigh in on this one. Is hiring an engineer terrible advice? In a Facebook ‘Barndominium Living’ discussion group this was posted: “Curious as to how many of you consulted an engineer before building (for concrete and steel framing) or simply went with your welder’s design?” First response, from […]

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Gambrel Barndominium Done Differently

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/07/03 @ 8:00
Gambrel Barndominium Done Differently

What I Would Have Done Differently With Our Gambrel Barndominium When we built our gambrel roof style barndominium 15 years ago we were in a position financially where we could have done most anything we wanted to. Our property was over two acres in size, so available space was not a determining factor. After having […]

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Tornadoes Reek Havoc

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/06/28 @ 8:00
Tornadoes Reek Havoc

Tornadoes Reek Havoc, Don’t Let Them Wreck You Excerpts in italics below are from an article first appearing in SBC Magazine June 3, 2019: “In the past few weeks, weather systems throughout Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Indiana and Ohio have had a significant impact on the built environment. As is well known, tornadoes cause severe stress […]

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A Shouse in Andover?

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/06/26 @ 8:00
A Shouse in Andover?

Shouse (from www.urbandictionary.com):  “A portmanteau of “shed” and “house”; A structure that outwardly resembles a shed (typically having a roll-formed steel-sheet exterior) that is primarily used as a dwelling / house. Though not required to fulfill the definition, a shouse generally has garage(s) incorporated into the structure.” I did not even realize I was shousing before it became […]

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Temporary Client Insanity – Truss Problems?

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/06/25 @ 8:00
Temporary Client Insanity – Truss Problems?

Temporary Client Insanity – Truss Problems?  Long ago someone told me during the course of any construction project there comes a time when every client goes absolutely bat-pooh crazy. Personally, even knowing what I know, I am guilty of freaking out and having had a case of temporary client insanity during our own remodel and […]

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An Oops from a Competitor’s Architect Part Two- Lateral Load

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/06/21 @ 8:00
An Oops from a Competitor’s Architect Part Two- Lateral Load

As the Architect Turns In our previous episode, we left Dan tied to railroad tracks in front of a speeding train…. Well close, we left Dan with a post frame building designed by an architect, with some serious structural connection problems.  Now I am a guy who watches Science Channel’s “Engineering Catastrophes”. I would just […]

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An Oops from a Competitor’s Architect

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/06/20 @ 8:00
An Oops from a Competitor’s Architect

The Pole Bar Guru reviews an oops from an architect in today’s blog. Back in 2017 Hansen Pole Buildings was contacted by a gentleman I shall call “Dan” who had an interest in a post-frame home or ‘barndominium’.  For those not familiar with this term: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2014/02/barndominium/. I have to admit, Dan spoke with a Hansen […]

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Job Site Storage of Polycarbonate Panels

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/06/18 @ 8:00
Job Site Storage of Polycarbonate Panels

Polycarbonate panels to be used for eave and/or gable end triangle “lighting” or ridge caps should not be used within living areas of post frame homes and barndominiums. They do often afford a cost effective method of getting natural lighting into accessory areas such as unheated shops and garages, barns and equipment storage buildings. Recommended […]

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How Far West, A Two-Story Winery, and Truss Bracing

Posted by polebarnguru on 19/06/10 @ 8:00
How Far West, A Two-Story Winery, and Truss Bracing

Today’s PGB answers questions about how far west we service, if building a two-story pole barn for a winery is possible, and lateral truss bracing. DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I’m curious how far west you service? I’m in WA state and am having a hard time finding anyone that makes kits similar to  https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/pole-barn-prices/ out here. […]

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