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Make Sure These Items Are On Your Small Barn Plans
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Make Sure These Items Are on Your Small Barn Plans

If you only have a few horses a small barn is a great way to provide a home for your animals without building a large and expensive full size barn. By using small barn plans you can build a comfortable home for you horses but there are several things that need to be considered when planning and building your barn. These things include your animal size, number of animals, stall size, storage needs, prevailing winds, sun orientation, drainage away from the barn, accessibility to the barn, planned uses of the barn and costs of construction. For the purposes of this article we will consider a 1 to 4 stall horse barn to be a small horse barn.

Stall and Animal Size

The overall size of your barn will largely be determined by the stall size and the number of stalls you need. The most common stall size, in both large and small horse barns is 12 foot by 12 foot. This stall size accommodates both large and small horses and gives you plenty of room to be in the stall with your horses. Smaller horses can use 10x10 horse stalls. The best way to know what size works for you and your horses is to find a stall you like and measure it. Once you have the dimension you will be able to better plan the design of your small horse barn plans.

Number of Animals

When designing your barn you must consider how many animals you plan on housing in the barn. It is important to also allow for your future needs.

Tack Room and Storage Needs

If you want to incorporate a tack room or storage room into the design of your barn it is a good idea to spend time figuring out a good size and where it will be placed in relation to the horse stalls. Tack rooms are used to store horse riding equipment and horse care gear. Everything from saddles to brushes to medication will end up in your tack room so make a good list and figure out how much space you will need to store it all. Most tack rooms are the same 12 foot depth as a stall with the width varying depending on your needs.

Barn Orientation and Accessibility

How your small barn sits on your property greatly affects the way the sun, wind, rain and snow will affect it. It also impacts how you will drive or walk up to the shed to use it. Easy access by vehicle to the areas that store feed will affect how much work it is to stock the barn. It is a good idea to orient the barn so that the cold winter winds are blocked by the exterior walls of the shed. If your barn is in a warmer climate then try to orient the doors so that the breeze can flow through them. If your barn has a covered lean to area you will want to orient it so that the evening sun is not shining into the open breezeway.

Drainage Away From the Barn

Providing proper drainage away from the barn is a critical part of small barn construction that often gets overlooked. There is nothing worse than having your animals standing in water every time it rains or snows. The amount of slope does not need to be much, it simply needs to be directed away from the barn. Most small horse barn plans will have instructions to build the barn on top of a dirt or gravel that allows drainage.

Planned Uses of the Barn

Not everyone uses their horse barn to only store horses. If you want to use your small barn for a mixed use like parking a tractor and housing horses then you will need to consider which side of the barn the larger entrance for equipment will be on and the door type needed to hold the larger doors. Other uses for small barns include equipment storage, feed storage, tack rooms, office and workshop.

Costs of Construction

The cost to build your small horse barn is one of the primary drivers to determine the size of the barn, what options it has and how nicely it is finished. Using the small horse bar plans to determine how much it will cost is one of the first steps to planning and building your barn. Use your plans to get material and labor bids and then modify them according to your needs.

The perfect set of small barn plans is your most important tool to help your building project. Take the time to plan your project an make sure your plans show all the important details you want to include. Make sure you have the perfect stall size, enough room for your animals, plenty of storage, good drainage away from the barn and proper orientation to the elements. Add to those things you planned uses and how much you can spend to build it and you will be well on your way to building the perfect small barn.


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