Best Barn Hay Bale Storage Practices

hay storage, hay storage practices, hay bale storageImproper hay bale storage can lead to quality-loss in the bale. Having to replace hay bales results in preventable overhead increases for your farm operation. Avoid this by following proper hay bale storage practices.

1. Store Hay Bales Indoors

Indoor storage preserves hay bale quality and color. We recommend storage inside a pole building or steel barn with good ventilation and zero traces of leakage. Indoor storage protects the hay from direct sunlight. Sunrays deplete the hay of nutrients, such as protein and vitamin A.

Also, hay bales are flammable, so the building should ideally be constructed from fire-proof material. Our optional features also include vents and windows for optimal air flow.

2. Let the Hay “Breathe”

Do not store the bales back-to-back; leave at least three-feet of space between stacks for air to circulate. This also prevents the hay from absorbing too much moisture. Moisture levels in hay should not exceed 15%. You should also stick to cured hay, which is more resistant to moisture buildup. Once in a while, open a bale to inspect for mold. Continue Reading →

C&S Construction Making the Switch to Laminated Posts and Beams

laminated posts, laminated beamsAt C&S Construction, our mission is to create pole barns and steel buildings that last as long as your home. To achieve that end, we have contracted with Timber Technologies to be our main supplier of laminated posts and beams. What does this decision entail for our Spokane customers?

What Are Laminated Posts and Beams?

Timber Technologies is a manufacturer of laminated glulam posts. Glulam consists of multiple layers of material bonded together using a moisture-resistant adhesive. The end product is a form of engineered wood with exceptionally high bending strength. Pound-for-pound, it’s tougher than steel.

Applications for Laminated Posts and Beams

Laminated glulam posts are becoming a mainstay in pole building construction. This includes applications for both residential and commercial constructions. Contractors rely on laminated pieces for vaulted ceilings which create wide open spaces beneath them. These laminated constructions can also be used as ridge beams, cantilevered beams, purlins, and garage door headers. Continue Reading →

Pole Building Vs Stick-Frame Construction: What’s the Difference?

pole building vs stick frame, pole frame constructionPeople familiar with pole buildings may have also heard of stick-frame buildings. Are these terms interchangeable? If not, how are they different? We will clear up any confusion with a pole building vs stick-frame discussion.

Pole Building and Stick-Frame Construction

Pole buildings and barns use a post-frame construction where laminated wood posts make up the bulk of the framing. The roof utilizes trusses connected by purlins. The exterior consists of steel panel claddings that “hold” the structure together. Contrary to popular belief, the construction does not include poles, or interior columns.

By contrast, a stick-frame building contains a basement or crawlspace over which builders construct the building. The frame also requires a concrete foundation for support. Due to the construction of the foundation, building costs are far higher.

Why Choose Pole Buildings Over Stick-Frames?

As we just mentioned, the foundation adds significantly to a building’s costs. The required excavation and concrete generally make up about 10% to 15% of the total building cost. You can cut out this expense entirely with a pole building. Continue Reading →

Five Types of Pole Barn Doors

Pole barn buildingsC&S Construction come in various design styles. You also have just as many pole barn door styles. Choices range from a typical house-style front doors to industrial-style overhead doors. We’ll explore some of the door types and their mechanism of operation.

1. Sliding Doors

As suggested in the name, sliding doors slide open and shut, much like a patio glass door. This is the common door of choice for pole barn sheds for storing machinery. One sliding door drawback, though, is that the doors aren’t exactly insulation-friendly due to the difficulty of applying air-tight weather stripping.

2. Overhead Doors

This is not unlike a typical residential garage door. Unlike sliding doors, this door type can better accommodate weather stripping for controlling heat gain/loss. People also prefer this type simply because of its similarity to their existing garage panel door. Continue Reading →

Lot Preparation for Pole Barn Construction

pole barn lot preparationHave you designated a site for your future pole barn? Just because the land is empty does not mean it’s ready to accommodate a steel building or other structure. You need the right kind of lot preparation for a pole barn; otherwise you may run into unforeseen problems during construction.

Acquire the Legal Permits

Even if you own the property, you may still need to obtain the proper permits depending on your specific district. Contact your local city administrator. We are familiar with most zoning requirements in and around Spokane. We may be able to assist you in this area if the construction is within our common service zones. You may require a special permit, even if you reside outside major metropolitan areas.

The Lot Preparation Process

Use stakes and boundary ropes to designate the exact lot space. Ideally, the land should consist of mostly flat and a well-draining area. The area should also be spacious enough for possible future expansion. After staking the area, you should still have enough walking space on all four sides. Finally, establish the required elevation and grade for adequate drainage. Continue Reading →

Barn Vs. Pasture: Which Is Better for a Horse?

barn vs. pasture, horse stableDo you own a farmstead with one or more horses? Do you keep them in a barn or a pasture? Which promotes healthier and happier horses? We’ll explain the benefits of each.

Barn vs. Pasture?

Most horse owners recommend pastures over a stable. This makes sense because pastures provide open air and the opportunity for exploration, which is a definite plus for a horse’s well-being.

An open pasture for a horse is preferable; no argument. However, a barn stable has its place as well. On the one hand, an indoor stable provides a warm place during the cold or rainy season. Keeping a horse in a stable is also beneficial for the owner when conducting horse care, such as feeding and grooming.

Of course, it’s not good to keep horses cooped up in a pole barn all day. Horses that spend prolong periods in a stable may chew the wood, kick the wall, or walk the stall. These are signs that your horse is bored, isolated, and not getting enough exercise. Continue Reading →

Add a Pole Barn to Your Agritourism Business

agritourismWashington isn’t exactly a rural state, though it does have its fair share of farmlands. More farmers are profiting by incorporating some form of agritourism to their business. This form of tourism is on the rise. Agricultural businesses around the Spokane region may benefit by expanding their business to include tourist attractions.

What Is Agritourism?

Visiting a farm is a novel experience for urbanites. These people pay to see livestock and even partake in day-to-day activities, such as grooming a mare or milking a cow. Agritourism is a rapidly growing industry; it was estimated to be a $704 million sector in 2012.

More farmers are expanding their business to accommodate visitors. This may include creating a bed and breakfast or renting out a barn as a wedding venue. Other activities for tourists at a farm include livestock petting zoos, bird and wildlife watching, and navigating through corn mazes. Continue Reading →

How to Increase Pole Barn Security

pole barn securityRegardless of the purpose of a pole barn, the structure is vulnerable to burglary, just like a home or other facility. As the owner, you have to take precautions to minimize the possibility of a pole barn break-in. We’ll explain why thieves target pole barns and how you can increase your pole barn security to protect your property.

Why Pole Barn Break-Ins Occur

More often than not, pole barns serve as storage units that are detached from the main home or building. As such, expensive equipment and tools lie inside. Sheds also seldom have people inside, making them an attractive target. The same vulnerability applies to pole barn garages, hay storages, and livestock barns. Burglars know these units more than likely contain items worth good money.

Pole Barn Security Measures

We recommend the same precautionary measures you would take for your home or place of business. Consider these pole barn security practices:

  • Install more outdoor lighting, and consider motion sensor lights for the main pole barn entrance. Remember, thieves use darkness for concealment.
  • If the pole barn has windows, are valuables in plain sight? Consider adding curtains, or keeping expensive items out of view from the window.
  • Optional features for pole barns include various door styles and locking mechanisms. Consider a model with a sturdy lock and a strong door that a thief can’t kick open. If the door can accommodate an additional lock, use a professional-grade padlock resistant to a bolt cutter.
  • Burglars may break the door or window using items within the vicinity of the barn. These include hand tools, such as shovels, garden forks, pruning shears, etc. Relocate these items indoors.

Continue Reading →

Pole Barn Flooring Options at a Glance

pole barn flooringOnce fully set up and ready for use, pole barns really aren’t that different from a conventional building. This means you generally have the same options in terms of roofing, insulation, and flooring. Speaking of flooring, choices are plentiful here. Find out about the different styles of pole barn flooring for your newly erected shed or facility.

Flooring Styles for Pole Barns

Your ideal flooring style depends on your budget and what you intend to use the pole barn for.

Dirt Flooring: This is one of the more economical options especially if using the barn for storage. Some owners start with dirt flooring to see how it holds up. Keep in mind, though, that the structure may eventually require another flooring type. Moisture and soil conditions may create unstable flooring. You will also need to upgrade if you intend to use the space for human dwelling. Continue Reading →

Fabric Buildings Prevent Corrosion in Storage Facilities

fabric buildingsCorrosion naturally occurs when metal comes into contact with water, humidity, road salt, and other exposures. Corrosion can be detrimental for traditional buildings. The National Association of Corrosion Engineers, in fact, estimates annual corrosion damage in the U.S. at $276 million. This is why we recommend fabric buildings for preventing corrosion.

Fabric Buildings Are Corrosion-Proof

We especially recommend fabric-covered buildings as storage facilities. This is especially so for buildings that store any type of metal products. Fabric is non-corrosive, making it perfect for material that shouldn’t be in corrosive environments, such as scrap metal located in a high-humidity area.

Many clients, in fact, have requested a fabric building for their work sites. This includes various hardhat companies in the mining, agricultural, and recycling sectors. Continue Reading →