Sunday, October 7, 2012

Barn complete

Finished the barn that will provide winter quarters for the hogs.  I'll be operating it as a deep-litter barn.  It'll have 3 feet of wood chips on the floor.  It's the first time I've tried a deep-litter system for barns, and I'm interested to see how it goes. 

The basic maintenance is to run a rototiller over the surface about once a month to break it up and mix it.  The pigs might do that job by themselves.   The weather has been glorious the last month and a half, and it's allowed me to do a lot of work that is usually rain delayed.  It's nice to be able to work in the sun. 
It's 30' wide and 72'  long (the concrete slab underneath it is 34x80) and I chose to do ecology block walls to allow easy cleaning by tractor.  Just scrape it out in the spring.  Means we can use tons and tons of litter/bedding easily. 
The roof actually overlaps the edge of the blocks, so I expect it to be pretty weather-tight.  I'm They sell end kits for these barns, and I'm debating it.  I will probably enclose one end so that the wind doesn't blow through it, make it a little warmer for the pigs. 
We did most of the work by hand.  Pulling the cover over was a bit of a chore, but it was nice to get it done, and you couldn't ask for better weather. 
The inside of the barn is 18' tall at the peak, which was not a very easy height to work at.  I rented this man lift and it made the job mush easier and faster. 


becky3086 said...

Very nice but I am curious, why so tall?

Bruce King said...

The building is designed to be about 15' tall (including 4' pony walls), but I added another 2 feet to it.

My tractors are about 10' tall, and the front loader, when raised, is about another 8' above that. So I wanted a building that would be hard for the hired hands to hit with the tractor unless they really tried.

Plus I'll be filling it with 3' of chips, so the usable height will be about 15 feet - still enough clearance to get the tractor in and out and use the front loader there.

Jonathan said...

How many hogs do you run in the barn?

Bruce King said...

This barn provides sleeping area for 80 sows. I partitioned off 20' for a farrowing area with a gate and blocks after this picture.