How to Build the Floor?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Tango, Feb 15, 2005.

  1. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    I wanted to have help on this but doesn't look like it and this hurricane season I want to be able to provide my horse with a safe shelter from the wind and rain. I'm confident I can build a decent shelter for her. My question involves starting the floor. I've seen the floors started with a cbs block at every corner and then 2x 4 laid over them, leveled, and connected with brackets. Then 2 x 6's were nailed across to form the floor. Does this sound like the way to go? It will be a small buiilding with three full sides and one half side - about 12 x 12. Thanks in advance.
     
  2. mtman

    mtman Well-Known Member

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    would be a mess after peeing in there
     

  3. moopups

    moopups In Remembrance

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    Make sure any wood that touches concrete is pressure treated to prevent termites, for a horses weight I would put more piling under the floor as well as in the corners, at least 10 pilings with two of them in or near the middle.
     
  4. GrannieD

    GrannieD Well-Known Member

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    It will be a small buiilding with three full sides and one half side - about 12 x 12. Thanks in advance.[/QUOTE]

    I think you would find a wooden floor to be a big problem & not necessary for comfort & safety of your horse..You might configure things so there is a slight floor decline to the open side. I don't know what soil you are working with ,but a packed clay floor is ideal for horses..If drainage of your soil is good you can use a mat floor..they are available for regular stall use over concrete...hardly think it is necessary for a run in shed/shelter..GrannieD
     
  5. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    I absolutely need a raised floor because last year after the hurricanes everything was under at least six inches of water out there. I can't afford a cement truck to come out. I have a cement mixer that can do two bags at a time but it kills my back to work with it and I can't imagine the cost of putting down concrete for a horse's weight. I can place stall mats on the wood and clean them out daily- no big deal there. I can even close to her when it isn't raining. But tell me about packed dirt?
     
  6. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    Thanks :)
     
  7. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    Hi Tango!
    I agree with the others. A wooden floor would be a pain and would have to be replaced on down the line. Even pressure treated lumber wouldn't last too long, I guess it depends on how often your horse will be using the barn.
    We prefer packed dirt floors, they are easy to scoop out and fresh straw keeps them nice and clean.

    Our stock trailer has a pressure treated floor and we replace it about every 5 years. Again, it depends on how often we are using it. You can't let any manure sit on the floor very long, in other words make sure it's cleaned out after every use. Also a rubber mat sure helps the horses legs.

    What ever you decide, take pictures for us!! :D
     
  8. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    Tango, you might call a redi-mix concrete company just to see what they would charge for a load. It would give you an idea of how much higher it would be than pressure treated wood.
    I have no idea what wood is going for right now, but it seems like it's high in my area.

    Our barns and stalls are packed dirt, I don't know if it would work in your area since you have so much flooding?
     
  9. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    Well this is depressing. I didn't want to spend a lot- not only because I don't have a lot but because I need two shelters- one for each pasture. I live on the Kissimmee Prairie- this is all flood zone but some areas are better than others. We're fortunate to have an area that was only under about 6 inches of water - My house is built on a foundation that is about 2.5 ft. above the surrounding ground and we built up the surrounding ground as well. If I shouldn't do wood and I can't have packed dirt - I'm waiting on concrete estimates now thanks cowgirlone- what other options do I have. Moopups, have you seen any good horse shelters without concrete?
     
  10. Topaz Farm

    Topaz Farm Well-Known Member

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    I vote against the wooden floor also, and would think twice about the concrete. If you do decide on concrete make sure it is roughed up, I believe they call it broom surface. In any case it isn't smooth.

    Probably the best best is to find the highest spot you can for the shed. Then build up around it and inside.

    We have never had a probably with standing water until this year when we got 5 inches in one fell swoop. After everything dried up we built up the inside of the sheds and around it, sand is what we have here. Not too long after that we got another big downpour and everything was fine. We don't get rain like that very often out here in W. TX.
     
  11. bearkiller

    bearkiller Well-Known Member

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    Tango,

    Obviously nobody that reads this board likes wood floors for nags. I will be the exception! Ive had nags on dirt floors and that worked very well. I've had nags on concrete, broom finish or rougher, and that is hard on legs and woe unto you if the nag falls...expect serious injuries.

    Out here in the warm West I have used nag stalls with old growth redwood floors and PT floors. And they work OK, but not as well as dirt. Horses MUST be well bedded on wood floors...locally we use wood shavings about 6-8 inches deep. When wet wood floors DO tend to be slippery. Some locals here solve that with mats and others just use plenty of shavings to absorb the moisture.

    In building a wood floor strong enough to support a horses weight you will need to go either of two directions. Use floor joists of PT wood spaced no more than 16 inches (and 12 inches is better) and make the floor with heavy lumber or 1 1/8 ply. The alternative is to lay 4 x 12 PT directly on a leveled area (gravel) and lock them together with PT 2 X 4 at each end. Mind you all this makes for a very expensive horse stall.

    I know hard work hurts and I know costs must be considered. Think about having a local company deliver a truck and trailer load of river run gravel or clean dirt (tell them what you want to do) to build up the area and then use that on which to build the soil floored stall. Likely less cost than a wood floor. And it will raise the level enough to keep feet dry (hopefully).

    bearkiller
     
  12. fin29

    fin29 Well-Known Member

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    Here are some plans for a horse stall on skids. It calls for a plywood floor and the skids are 4x6 pressure treated. You could just leave off the front part and windows for your needs and drag it to your other pasture with a truck or tractor:

    http://www.ag.ndsu.nodak.edu/abeng/plans/6082.pdf
     
  13. Doug

    Doug Member

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    What about crushed limestone Gets hard like concrete. Would be cheaper than concrete,stronger than wood. You could build it up a little with sand then put the crushed limestone down once the horse walkes on it it well start compacting and get very hard. Or wet it down and roll it. We use it on driveways and sometimes sidewalks here in northern Michigan instead of concrete
     
  14. thebeav

    thebeav Well-Known Member

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    12' x 12' @ 6" thick = 2.7 cubic yards
     
  15. fordy

    fordy Well-Known Member

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    ...................Ok , this is how a lady solved her problemO and it is somewhat Analogous to yours.....she hired a guy with a small diesel tractor with a 6 foot box blade . He started dragging dirt from a 100 feet away and over a couple of days created a 50 x 50 foot Pad about 12 inches high strictly with ...HER dirt . Then he dug 4 - 9 inch diameter x 3 foot deep holes and set 4 -12 foot long x 4x6 , treated posts in cement for the uprights then she and significant other built a real strong 3 sided shed facing South . Then she fenced the outer ...50 x 50 perimeter with 2x4 , noclimb wire . Problem solved ....fordy... :eek: :)
     
  16. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    Okay got lots to think about. I'm still waiting on quotes form two concrete places- some wouldn't help me out with an estimate cause they're six month backed up. None can do the job before April but that still gives me some time if I can afford concrete. 6 inches, is that minimum? I was thinking 4 inches. I can build a frame and pack dirt in. The guy I use charges $60 an hour but it is unfair to have him come out here for less than a day- maybe I can do that part myself with a rental bobcat. I've got plenty of sand fordy :) I've got a few other jobs for a bobcat but I just had the guy w/ the bulldozer over twice in two months for $800 worth of work and I think that is enough for me right now. As for prices though- I think pt wood is cheaper here at present- course I'd be loading anfd hauling myself. High density fill when we built up our foundation was $80 a truckload plus something for the distance. I've heard it has gone up a lot due to gas prices. ALright - thanks everyone. I sincerely appreciate your help. I'll get back to ya'll when I decide on this first step.
     
  17. Darren

    Darren Still an :censored:

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    Since you're in Florida you shouldn't have a problem finding the marine grade pressure treated lumber. Marine grade gets a whopping 2.5 lb CCA treatment compared to the .24 or .26 and sometimes .6 lb treated stuff they used to sell in the box stores. The stuff is rated for a 20 yr life immersed in salt water. It's still available in the heavier treatment since it's the only treatment that will work in salt environments. For your use it will probably still be good 100 years from now. Check out suppliers that sell to dock and bulkhead builders. They'll have stacks of the stuff. They'll also have the large stuff like 4x6s (walers), 6x6, 8x8 and pilings you don't usually find in home supply places.
     
  18. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    Hey, that's great Darren. Thanks. I'll look that up in the morning :)
     
  19. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

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    if your pasture is 6 inches under water, your looking at a small engineering problem...
    I would say, building a mound would be ideal, in place of poured concrete, why not use sold concrete block, dry set in your 12x12 floor to let it drain, and the with your wood beams make a frame 12x12 on the block platform, so you can fill it with about 10 inches of stall mix sand/gravel.
    yo get in the shed, construct a concrete ramp with traction ridges... youll have to pour that one.
    that would save you a lot of cemtnt mixing, and would elevate your floor base as high as you care to drystack the block, say 2 layers @ 8" thick =a 16" above ground elevation, far enogh to drain off even if its under 6 iches of water.
    the additional layer of stall mix will endure a soft place to lie down, even if its damp in a flood, at least its not wet.
    of course youll have to carry those block... easier than hand mixing concrete.
    if you can get a truck on there, pour the floor and box it in to hold the stall mix, you can pile straw or chips on top as needed.
    I would think on a flood plain a bulldozed mound would errode away at some point.

    ive seen wood plank floors in horse stalls, and if its good quality planking, it does make a good floor and drains quite well if you leave sufficent gaps. like ANY floor thats hard, clay or whatever you still need good bedding, so the debate over cement/wood/dirt is kinda pointless when you get to bedding. some floors need more than others.
    if you put down plank, you can buy stall mats made of rubber, 4x6';s at agway cost about 50 bucks each. these would sofen the floor a bit.

    just watch, a weakened plank can bust and the leg go thru, then you lose a hoof when they yank it out... owch!
     
  20. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

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    rail road ties... the big ones.
    theres a hella floor for ya.