Friday, December 11, 2015
Get to Work Bud!!!!
If it seems like Spring through late Summer is almost nothing but dealing with grass around here, from mowing constantly to haying, trimming, etc. Well Fall through late Winter seems to be all about barn repairs and maintenance.
There is ALWAYS something that needs fixed in the barn.....
I was actually setting up to start this latest barn repair spurt yesterday when I got called into work. Over the years animals have chewed and pushed the siding out, constant wind and rain has rotted some of the base boards and allowed the siding to come loose etc.
It's a constant battle.
Today's main job was to put a new baseboard along the top of the concrete footing and begin sucking the loose siding back into place. The base boards are actually ancient hand hewed Oak 2x10's that sit flat along the concrete footing wall and were originally bolted into the concrete. Over the last 100 years or so the base boards have rotted in maybe an inch or two from the outside while the inside of the boards are still rock hard. The rot is just enough to start allowing the old nails to pull out. To make the job easier I just decided to simply put another layer of pressure treated 2x10's over the old Oak ones and work around the old Oak support beams. Basically a lot of measuring and beating the new boards into place as tight as possible so they will add their support to what remains of the old stuff. I figure it will hold for my lifetime plus a decade or more at least.
There are also sections like the above where some critter, I imagine cattle or a bored horse, have chewed through the horizontal studs and gnawed the siding, making big gaps. I been using my sawzall to cut away the gnawed and rotted wood, add in new horizontal supports above or below the compromised ones and then piecing in new lumber for the siding.
Most of the old windows are either completely gone or all the glass is busted out. I have been covering all the windows with plywood for right now to stop water damage and cut down on the draftiness. Eventually I will rebuild all these windows with plexiglass but for right now my main objective is to just stop the water damage.
So I made it up the first section getting the base board replaced, holes fixed, windows covered and siding sucked down tight and am now at the first walk in door. This is going to take some real creative carpentry to get the door figured out. It's sagging bad and needs the entire frame rebuilt and attached into the old support beams.
As I said always something but the barn is the most important part of the entire operation and it had been sitting and left to rot for decades before I started working on it. As you can see the first thing I did was paint it to stop the decay but it will get a new coat once all the repairs are finished.
Keep Prepping Everyone!!!!!!!