Lifting a truss.

Setting a truss.

Fir strip for setting trusses and for nailers for the metal roofing.

Shell is done.

Leftover metal roof from my house a few years ago.

half the roof on...just needs trimming.

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I had my brother and his kids up for hunting after Thanksgiving. I made use of their time, and also invited my other two brothers and my dad to help. It was a great time working together. Three generations of Schwarz men working together to raise a barn…it was awesome.

Adding the second layer of pallets.

Everyone had an important part in the whole process. I had lots of minds to bounce ideas off of. The younger men (my nephews) were very useful in doing the things that just needed extra hands to be done, holding this or that, bringing lumber where it needed to be, nailing, screwing etc… One of my brothers was helpful in being a “go-getter” when we needed material I hadn’t gotten already and also as an extra set of hands.

Adding interior support and exterior sheathing.

Another brother did some other jobs I wasn’t able to get done with all the busyness, and he helped build the trusses. And the other brother was able to be a sort of  “job foreman”, directing the younger kids what to do, and being able to jump on jobs without much instruction. My Dad was helpful in thinking of different ways to design and build the trusses and where to add extra support of the entire structure.

Taking a break for some laughter and planning.

I thought I would be completely stressed out trying to direct everyone, but it went rather smoothly. Everything seemed to work out. Any hiccups were quickly figured out and never really became a problem. I didn’t get as much done in that day as I had hoped due to some early morning errands that took too long but all in all a lot got accomplished. A big thank you to my family!

Both layers on. Top plate installed. Sheathing and Trusses ready to be installed.

Designing the trusses.

Building the trusses.Lifting trusses in place.Setting the trusses.Fir strip to set trusses and also for nailers for metal roofing.Almost finished the trusses.

Leftover metal roof from my house used.


Old shed in background

I think its time to update you all on how the pallet barn/shed is coming along. This past summer I was able to commit myself to emptying out the existing shed and tearing it down before it fell in on everything, or on someone. It was completely rotting away due to a hole in the roof and the wet area it was set on. I had my friend come over to help tear it down to the base. I hauled away the material

Shed is down.

because none of it was worthy of recycling in this project. I am going to make use of other material that are recycled.  The run to the dump was probably the heaviest I have ever taken. I believe it was well over 1,000lbs!

So after doing that, I began to measure out and level the area where I was going to build the new barn. The back corner will be at the same spot as the former shed, making use of the same level base.

Ready to haul to the dump!

Then it will extend out in towards the hill and driveway. It will be a 16’X20′ barn.  My friend let me borrow his Kubota with a bucket on it to level out an area and spread out some soil/fill that I had piled up over the summer. I then built plywood forms and staked them to be level. Then I had 8 tons ($12.70/ton) of 2B gravel poured inside the forms. Uphill from the base, I used leftover drain pipe and covered that with gravel so any water running down the hill will drain out around the barn pad…well most of it hopefully!

Leveled ground and built form.

I am in the midst of leveling out the gravel inside the forms. I am also collecting old cinder block from a friends old barn that was knocked down. It will need a little cleaning up, but they will work great. I am going to lay the cinder block around the perimeter of the form and build the pallets on them to keep them away from any moisture. This also gives me more headroom inside the barn.

More pics to come in next update…

8 tons of 2B stone.

Ready to build!


House...porch needs a cleaning.

House...porch needs a cleaning.

Our house is pretty much finished….on the outside. There will never be an end to fixing this or that with an old house…and even on some new houses. Its an expected responsibility in home ownership. More so on an aging home. We are very pleased with our progress so far. We are very thankful for all the help that has been given to us from various freinds and family. Enjoy the pictures of the progress.

Before
Before
chimney tear down
chimney tear down
Chimney goes up
Chimney goes up
Beginning new roof
Beginning new roof
Freinds on roof
Freinds on roof
Siding comes off...insulation goes on
Siding comes off…insulation goes on
Frank Starts the new siding
Frank Starts the new siding
Back of house done
Back of house done

The days are getting closer to when we have our own goats. As stated in another post, we have decided to go the pet/meat path for now instead of dairy goats. I know goats shouldn’t be seen as pets  and meat at the same time. But my goal is to have meat goats…but for now may be considered pets. I don’t think at first that I will be able to do the butchering. I think it might be easier to take them somewhere.  I think it will be too easy to get attached to only two or three goats as apposed to many.

So in preparation we have measured out  a 100′ by 100′ enclosure which will include our old metal shed. The roof on the shed had holes  rusted through it and holes in the plywood. Last night we cleaned out the shed and I ripped off and replaced the roof with some leftover metal roofing I had from our house re-roofing project. Everything went real easy and quickly.

Shed roof repair

Shed roof repair

I also started weed whacking around the perimeter of the area we are going to fence so that installing the fence will be easy.

Our next steps will be making a better floor in the shed for the goats and then purchasing the fence and fencer. We were going to go with the electric netting fence, which is quite expensive. But we talked with a friend of ours who suggested that we use 4 strands of 9-wire electric fence and get a mature goat along with one or two that are still young. So the older goat will be familiar with electric wire fence and also know how to graze.

This route will be much less expensive and allow us to expand our pasture area over time.

Some our pasture

Some our pasture


Our house before

Our house before

SO we have lived in our home for a little over 4 years now. We have really done quite a bit of work, though the pace has slowed down since we started having children. By “pace” I mean the pace of work on the house, not the pace of “business” in the home =).

So it has now come to the outside of the house. Last year our church came over on a saturday and helped put our metal roof on. I cant have the roof finished till I get new siding on.

So, currently I am tearing off the old compressed fiber siding and putting up 1 inch foam board insulation. It is of plank construction, the way they did it in the old days! So far its going well. I took a week off of work and really tried to get alot done. The big time taker is trimming out the windows. I framing them with 2X4’s and then wrapping the 2X4’s  with aluminum. Its coming out rather nicely, but does take up a lot of time. I believe I can already feel the difference inside the house. I tried to hit the wall that gets most of the wind first.