Monday, November 21, 2011

Greg Searfass (610)398-3365 and his power tools & plywood splines.

If there is one thing I learned, there is more than one way to skin a cat, and even more ways to build a barn. Be cautious if you talk to a builder that claims there’s only one way! One builder insisted that I needed a ridge beam at the peak of my frame. Now, the barn stands just fine without it. Basically, its just the way he prefers to build. Another framer suggested that I have seven custom beams, 10”x 10” x36’ long milled and delivered. Just the logistics of moving that sort of beam around is completely unnecessary and burdensome, never mind the extreme additional cost.
There are some wild ideas that people come up with when they don’t have to pay for them or make them work. I discovered a phenomenon that I call the “Bumping Up Theory”. If you discuss your timbers with a framer that is not actually building your barn, you can expect him to bump up the strength and safety factors by at least one or more times. For example, if you need 6” x 6” posts, he’ll probably agree but suggest 8” x 8”’s. If you think that two feet of concrete is plenty for a footing, the cement guy will probably want two and a half feet.


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