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Building a tack room: ?s on wall construction

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  • Building a tack room: ?s on wall construction

    Getting ready to build out my new tack room in the barn, and I'm curious what others have done in terms of the walls' underlying construction and facing material. I want to be able to have lots of racks, shelves etc on the walls, and it seems like the standard stud spacing of 16" centers would restrict my flexibility in this regard. In a small space you need as much flexibility as you can get.
    I'm planning on just using plywood for the wall face, and I think screws in the plywood will get loose and pull out over time if theres' no stud behind it.
    So, I'm wondering if I maybe do twice as many studs -- for a small space it's not like the additional 2x4s will cost much. Or just standard spacing and use anchor type screws-- think they'll be good enough for the long term?
    Any other options I'm not thinking of?

  • #2
    are you planning on hanging a horse on the wall?


    • #3
      How thick of plywood are you planning to use?

      I personally have nothing good to say about those inexpensive paneling sheets or 1/4 inch skins in terms of being tough enough to use in a farm setting. If you punch a hole in it it's very hard to repair and looks cheap and ugly.

      I have heard of people creating an internal or external rail, either behind the finish material or on top of it, like a picture or chair rail, of 1 x 4 or 6 material. In a barn the exterior version would collect too much dust I think.

      My trainer has I believe 1 inch lap board, varnished, in her tack room and boy does it look nice. She also has what I think is beadboard plywood sheets, it's set over top of 3/4 inch planking and boxed to make the doors so it works well for a finished look.

      If you can get fence boards, they are pretty cheap here and are great for projects as well as fences. If you want the rustic look, try used fence boards or pallets.
      Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
      Incredible Invisible


      • #4
        If you can decide before closing the wall where you want to hang stuff, say at two heights from the floor, you can block the wall there, add one more 2x6 between studs there for that purpose.

        That is the way framers do for handicapped access houses, blocking walls in special spaces at special heights to later add handicapped rail supporting systems, like around toilets and showers.

        Once the wall is closed, you can always find those 2x6 with a stud finder if you forgot where they are.

        In my tackroom, I added two rails to one wall, on both sides of the window, after the walls were finished, easier to work with for me:
        Attached Files


        • #5
          What Bluey said. When we built our tack room, I chose a wall that the saddle racks would hang on and had it reinforced while it was under construction.


          • #6
            Put plywoods on the studs, then finish the walls with 3/4 to 1 inch horizontal wood boards.. that you can stain or varnish. Will hold screws etc. safely.
            Les Écuries d'Automne, Québec, Canada
            Visit EdA's Facebook page!


            • #7
              As others have said, you can think about what you want where and add the braces in before closing up the walls. And while a stud finder is a great thing to use...take pictures before closing up the walls! We did that with house and barn at the suggestion of our builder and refer back to those photos all the time. I just used them the other day as I was hanging up a new shelf/rack in the laundry room and wanted to be sure I wasn't drilling into the power or water lines. When they added on to our barn last year, I pulled all the old photos up on my ipad and that helped them know where to fish elecric lines, etc.


              • #8
                Ditto what Bluey said. That's what we did to make hanging kitchen cabinets in the house super easy.

                My bridle racks are a single piece of lumber with hooks on it, so they hit at least a couple of studs. My saddle rack (quite heavy) is bolted to one of the partially exposed posts (it's a pole barn) and it's not going anywhere.

                The walls and ceiling of my tack room are just OSB, and not the thin stuff. The plan is to someday make it "pretty". The floor is concrete- smooth finish and painted with concrete paint after it was cured.

                Last spring DH remodeled a tack room for some friends of ours. This is what he used on the walls - didn't pay that much, though. We have a local supplier that was half the price. The ceiling was something we all brainstormed on, and decided to use vinyl beaded porch panel to cover the existing plywood. The ceiling then didn't have to be painted, and it's easily cleanable. Over the existing floor we put down a cheapish laminate. Since they're meticulous about things being neat and clean, the floor should last a good long time. DH replaced the doors, hung a new cabinet and fancy light for them and rehung saddle and bridle racks. DH mounted all the bridle racks on a single board so they can hit studs (not that a bridle holder needs to hit a stud when screwed into 3/4" thick lumber) and be moved without having too many residual holes in the walls. They varnished the walls, hung pictures, and joked about getting a TV and recliner so they could enjoy it more!


                • #9
                  Just finished my tack room. Remember that things like saddle racks, the weight is a vertical force and not so much as a horizontal. The width I had on the wall I wanted my saddle racks would not accommodate additional studs as I also had an outlet on the wall that needed a stud as well. I have osb 3/4'' screwed to my studs and then paneling over that for esthetics. I made my own saddle rack holders that have three racks screwed into 3/4'' finished oak plywood. We used 2'' wood screws that had threads (not wide spaced either) up to the head of the screw and each plywood piece has 8 of them holding it to the wall. Each piece is 5' tall by 7.5'' wide. Those racks are solid and are not going any where nor pulling out of the wall.






                  This is what we started with..







                  Vinyl tile over the concrete

                  MUST have in Florida




                  Hardi Plank




                  We used PVC wood colored trim to cover the paneling seams, for baseboards, window and door trim, and to cover the corner seams. I am super lucky as my BFFs dad is basically a sub contractor (her uncle built our house and her dad did all of our crown molding, etc). Anyway, he had some left over marble so did the window sill, inside molding to cover the 2x4s and trimmed it all out for me.



                  The plywood for my bridle and saddle racks - we used a router on the edges first

                  I stained the cabinet and we installed the countertop and sink



                  I still want to buy a pantry cabinet to put next to the sink base and then a fridge of some sort and then a couple of wall cabinets next to the window. ALMOST there (a year later).

                  The most challenging thing about this room is that nothing was square (not even close - barn was here when we bought the place). The concrete was poured with a slope for drainage (used to be my wash rack) so there is a 1.5" difference in height as you move towards the external wall and towards the back wall (made for some creative thinking to make sure everything was as level as possible).
                  Last edited by KrazyTBMare; Feb. 10, 2013, 05:32 AM.

                  Member of the ILMD[FN]HP Clique, The Florida Clique, OMGiH I loff my mares, and the Bareback Riders clique!


                  • #10
                    Consider doing what I did, use self standing saddle racks you don't have to hang on anything, easy to move around to clean or change your "furniture" around as needed.
                    That is an option to hanging saddles from the wall.

                    It is more common in western barns, but why not for English saddles?


                    • #11
                      KrazyTB...ITS BEYOND Beautiful !!!!!!!!!!! You have to be SO proud and stoked! love love love it!
                      "Indecision may or may not be my problem"
                      --Jimmy Buffett


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ayrabz View Post
                        KrazyTB...ITS BEYOND Beautiful !!!!!!!!!!! You have to be SO proud and stoked! love love love it!
                        That is a wonderful tackroom, wonderful!

                        Love the pictures, so we can see how that was done.
                        Great use of that space, will remember that.


                        • #13
                          KrazyTBMare -- great tack room! Enjoyed the pictures. Makes me quite envious as my little room has to double for feed and tack and is just such a mess right now. It is pretty cool to document the progress with photos.


                          • Original Poster

                            Bluey and Krazy, thanks for the pics and great ideas everyone. I'm carving out a space about 11x12' in a corner, so I only have to build 2 walls. One of the existing walls is made from 2x14" solid oak planks, so no worries about hanging anything on THAT wall. It's such hard wood that my drill can barely get screws into it. So I can concentrate the saddle racks and heavier stuff there.

                            I'm giving serious thought to framing in some transom-shaped slider windows at ceiling height on both new walls. Would be nice for ventilation, and at least some natural light (not a lot, since the windows would face the barn interior).

                            PS Krazy I officially have tack room envy.
                            Last edited by HungarianHippo; Feb. 10, 2013, 05:03 PM. Reason: typo-a-rama


                            • #15
                              Thanks everyone. It has taken a long time to get there and I still need to finish a few things.

                              To get the pressure treated 2x4s, pressure treated plywood for the ceiling, hardware, door frame, etc to build the 3 walls was $600.00. I made sure to buy more stuff from Lowes when I received the flyers in the mail about saving X when spending Y.

                              This room is approx 10x10. My feed/tack room prior to this is also 10x10 so I totally get the cramped, messy tack/feed room.

                              This is the old tack/feed room back when it was just my mare and my friends gelding - adding my 2nd horse to the picture REALLY filled out the room lol This is nothing to how it was just a couple of months ago.... I never kept my hay in this room (used the 3rd stall until I got another horse and then made my wash rack my hay storage but then made the wash rack/hay storage my new tack room so moved hay to garage and now it is back in the 3rd stall lol)


                              Member of the ILMD[FN]HP Clique, The Florida Clique, OMGiH I loff my mares, and the Bareback Riders clique!