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hay barn question

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  • hay barn question

    right now, I'm leaning toward a hay barn / hay storage idea that will be 'long' and narrow...but quite tall. I am 'looking into' the idea that would have hay storage above, and trailer storage below. So that both parking/accessing trailer and loading/unloading hay can have a road base access up to the area for both ideas. (on limited property)...this would align with fence rail on one side, and I intend a high overhang where it could shelter horses in this area underneath, and I can 'hay' from the hay storage to them below while in this paddock/turnout area. What I'd like to know is: for most of you having hay delivered...is there a negative to having it 'up' about 12ft. to the flooring of the storage area for most trucks/hay deliverers?

    TIA!
    ayrabz
    "Indecision may or may not be my problem"
    --Jimmy Buffett
  • Original Poster

    #2
    http://s594.photobucket.com/user/ayr...03bc4.jpg.html

    here's the idea, but where volkswagon is shown, would be 'drive thru' where I'd back trailer....this would be RIGHT against the fenceline on the left hand side shown.....with the short 'overhang' up top giving a bit of a dry hay drop area / run in kinda covering to the paddock below......
    ayrabz
    "Indecision may or may not be my problem"
    --Jimmy Buffett

    Comment


    • #3
      Well, the main problem is you have to get the hay up there If you don't mind using an elevator and climbing up and down all winter, go for it. Also think about some sort of lighting though, it gets dark earlier in the winter and climbing up to hay in the dark isn't fun.
      It's a small world -- unless you gotta walk home.

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        Thanks, Mosey...that's what I was kinda 'after' as in: if most hay delivery folks HAVE a 'hay elevator' or is that usually on the farm owner to provide? Just wasn't sure, and was kinda? looking to get folks with 'loft' hay storage to chime in and edumacate me. spot where this would align on fence line is a lower area of paddock, anyway, so having the hay up on second level would be 'better' than on ground...
        ayrabz
        "Indecision may or may not be my problem"
        --Jimmy Buffett

        Comment


        • #5
          I'd love to put in a shed like what you are thinking about, talk about using space wisely. Most of my experience with hay elevators has been that the farm owner provides, however I'm sure there is some hay guy out here that wouldn't mind bringing his with him when he delivered the hay. I like loft type hay storage, and if needed you could always throw down a weeks worth of hay to feed off of for the week. My parents have an old red barn that they keep 1000+ bales of hay in every year, all of it is kept in a loft. Their main issue is keeping the critters out of it so Dad tarps it and that seems to work pretty well. I still tarp all my loft kept hay just as a safeguard 'just in case the roof leaks'

          Comment


          • #6
            None of the hay guys I know would ever consider bringing his own elevator to unload hay, that's your problem if you need to get the hay up high. To me, it would depend on how often you buy and have to store hay. If it's once a season, I can live with the loft (I do now). If it were a regular occurrence? I wouldn't like it...
            It's a small world -- unless you gotta walk home.

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              ok...good to know. (ugh...off to research hay elevator / used ones prices and maintenance...)
              ayrabz
              "Indecision may or may not be my problem"
              --Jimmy Buffett

              Comment


              • #8
                Ask around at the CoOp, etc. Used ones are usually pretty reasonable.
                It's a small world -- unless you gotta walk home.

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Will do. Yeah, as this is 'brand new' horsekeeping for me (always boarded ) I am not at all sure about hay suppliers, and who I'll be using, etc....thus why I'm asking questions even prior to the hay barn size/location/etc. For the property and road /load/unload access this spot would be good. I just need to be sure of understanding it all and knowing the usage costs / machinery etc. I admit....I keep thinking of: ? there MUST be a way, IF this is the route I choose to have a drop chute/or two?...JUST the size of a hay bale in width (think vertically on end....) maybe? made out of a column of chain link....to a base of pressure treated, just to keep it off the ground....where, I could load a bale from up top...snip the twine, and drop em end on end...so as eaten, natural gravity would keep hay dropping...........hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. kind a 'column feeder'? that would be accessable from all sides, and maybe even two of them spaced at far ends of the overhang....
                  ayrabz
                  "Indecision may or may not be my problem"
                  --Jimmy Buffett

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by ayrabz View Post
                    Will do. Yeah, as this is 'brand new' horsekeeping for me (always boarded ) I am not at all sure about hay suppliers, and who I'll be using, etc....thus why I'm asking questions even prior to the hay barn size/location/etc. For the property and road /load/unload access this spot would be good. I just need to be sure of understanding it all and knowing the usage costs / machinery etc. I admit....I keep thinking of: ? there MUST be a way, IF this is the route I choose to have a drop chute/or two?...JUST the size of a hay bale in width (think vertically on end....) maybe? made out of a column of chain link....to a base of pressure treated, just to keep it off the ground....where, I could load a bale from up top...snip the twine, and drop em end on end...so as eaten, natural gravity would keep hay dropping...........hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. kind a 'column feeder'? that would be accessable from all sides, and maybe even two of them spaced at far ends of the overhang....
                    It falls pretty much straight down. Don't snip the twine until it is on the ground or you will have a big mess. I think the chain link would just snag the hay and get messy--I would skip that. If I'm picturing what you are saying correctly. Why wouldn't you just heave it off the side (looking at your picture)?

                    Just remember where you put the drop shoot, you need to be able to remove the lid (you should really have a lid for safety) and stand around it, so it does take up more space than you may picture. Usually they are right where the ladder comes up for the person to get to the upper floor. I don't know why you would want more than one, unless dropping to individual stalls. It is an expense (i.e. under the roof--square footage you are giving up).

                    As stated, you need your own hay elevator. Or a construction boom (that's how we put it up last time I did it) . I would want to be mildly handy, as the chains and motors break, etc. ymmv. They are long, so think about where you will store it. You need someone comfortable with pulling in bales too (i.e. don't fall off the ledge) and it's usually 1 million degrees in the loft when you get the hay load (that's just been my experience though). Of course that was in an enclosed loft... I would worry about sideways rain in your design picture.
                    DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Call the Crossfit gym and issue a "challenge" when the hay guy arrives. That should work great for at least another year or two until the Crossfit fad dies out.

                      In all seriousness, it's hard work tossing hay bales up one story, even if it's a short one story. It took me a year to shake off a tennis elbow injury that began on a day where I took a turn as the "heave" guy in the chain. It's not impossible at all, but it doubled the work of unloading and stacking.

                      David

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        A couple thoughts:
                        Hay elevators (when they work...) are a lot slower than tossing and stacking, which is going to increase unloading time and irritate the hay guys. Also, you still have to haul it the length of the loft and then stack, and that's a hella workout. Especially once it gets over your head and even if you build steps out of the hay. Moving and stacking hay is very dusty and frequently extremely hot, so lots of good ventilation is extremely important during and after (assuming hay is coming from the fields and needs to cure).

                        Tossing bales down is dangerous to anything that might be wandering around at ground level (people, dogs, cats, chickens). You can kill a small animal with a dropped bale, so it's important to figure out how to create a temporary clear area for dropping bales.

                        Also, be aware that you'll drop hay chaff and dust down through the floor onto wiring, lights, and whatever is parked underneath. Not a big deal, but do think about it.

                        Many of the above reasons are part of why bank barns are so popular. If there's any way to throw hay directly from the delivery truck into the mow (such as by having the ground on one side be higher), do it. It's so much easier than trying to use a hay elevator.

                        All that being said, I really like feeding out of a hay mow. It keeps the hay in great condition and I can easily drop what I need, where I need it.
                        ---------------------------

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          thanks again, all ! (gonna be printing this out and discussing with contractor before actually going ahead with this haybarn 'idea'....we may find? a better location and design?
                          But...the choices for 'where' are truly limited.
                          Just to clarify a few things: sides. Yes...I envision the 'top' portion more or less 'enclosed'...with large (roll up?) or double door opening at the 'end' that is the loading/unloading end. the 'carport/drivethru underneath will not have the sides. The 'chaff' mention may also have a ply flooring in the design for the loft area ? Would not have anything but trailer and possibly truck underneath, however, and I unfortunately do not see the possibility of electric/wireing in this building, so that chaff issue wouldn't apply....
                          The drop of bales for the horse barn would not be the 'chute' I was speaking of....that I see happening from large loading/unloading door on end into farm pickup bed parked just below/under opening above......I'll keep a reasonable amount over IN little barn, but not more than a weeks worth.
                          the 'chute' idea I was envisioning/etc...was how nice it would be? if I can devise a 'feeder' situation that : under the 'overhang' the design shows on the one side....have that side aligning the fenceline, and that way, there is a bit of a protected area in that pasture/paddock that it would be nice to be able to drop a vertical bale into from the storage into a designed 'column feeder'....that could remain dry and have access from all sides underneath the overhang area in the pasture! (brainstorming here......)
                          ayrabz
                          "Indecision may or may not be my problem"
                          --Jimmy Buffett

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I drop loose hay from the mow into free access feeders inside my barn. It's great. We have stairs to our mow, rather than a ladder, and plenty of lights, so putting down hay is something just about anyone could do in an emergency.

                            The biggest problem is keeping the feeders themselves clean/designing them for easy clean-out. The ground here is damp enough that anything left sitting in the feeder for more than a few days starts to smell musty, so I only drop what I expect they'll clean up pretty quickly. I also make a point to frequently rake out all the bits of chaff and uneaten hay that accumulate in the bottom of the feeder before tossing down new. A good drainage layer topped with a rubber mat is easy to clean and keeps the hay in the feeder fresh a lot longer than anything else I've tried.
                            ---------------------------

                            Comment

                            • Original Poster

                              #15
                              so, now I'm thinking: hinged floor small square 'trap' doors, inside framing of doors lined with eye hooks. hook on long tube 'slow hay net' feeder, drop hay flakes or / if secure enough, whole vertical bale in. Refill as necessary, for hanging hay tube in run in/overhang area below.
                              ayrabz
                              "Indecision may or may not be my problem"
                              --Jimmy Buffett

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                If you are buying a years worth of hay from one supplier and paying for stacking in your barn they might be willing to bring their elevator over for them to use while they stack. You just have to see what is available for this in your area.

                                Yes, dropping a bale on something can injure it. For sure. But I would not put that high on the list of worries when deciding if this type of set up is appropriate for you unless you plan to have a quantity of critters running loose where you plan to drop the hay. There have been lots of hay bales dropped from lofts with no critter injuries.

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  thanks trubandloki....I'm specifically thinking 'only' hay dropping from large loading doors into parked/awaiting pickup bed. Not 'to the ground' so I'm expecting this would be a bit safer in re: accidental smooooshings.
                                  ayrabz
                                  "Indecision may or may not be my problem"
                                  --Jimmy Buffett

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I think you mention you will only have 2.5 horses?
                                    If so, you are going thru a lot of trouble to handle hay several times for just those few horses.

                                    I would think it makes more sense to leave a space on the ground to store the relatively small amount of hay you will need.

                                    I have worked in barns with hay lofts of all kinds and they were always way more work to receive, handle, store and feed hay than when the hay was at floor level.

                                    That is especially important when you have some that are smaller kids or older or injured doing the feeding and needing to get up on lofts, etc.

                                    We need to think, when building a dream farm, if we just love the idea of being a caretaker and are forgetting we really have the horses to do other, ride or whatever, not just to have a caretaker's volunteer job added to our day, as much pleasure that may give.

                                    Remember, with horses, KISS does apply also.

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      hahaha...Bluey, I appreciate the voice of reason! I think many are missing the point that: the ONLY reason I'm entertaining this is because of the very very limited access areas I have for such. Is second story hay storage ideal? uh...I'd be a moron to think so. I'm trying to: utilize ONLY location (that is not in a ravine. that would not cost a zillion dollars to clear of huge 80 year old trees) that is already accessible via already in place entrance lane for truck deliveries, that is not in a Chesapeake Bay act watershed (the ravines eliminate even if we wanted to (!) clearing----as the bottom of the ravines are a creek that is protected in this watershed., that it is along an extisting fenceline, that if raised above it, I would also have : trailer parking under it, (which I have no where right now to position out of the way) and haying ability and overhang from it for haying station protection from rain, etc... because of having a high second story 'overhang' possibility with drop doors into hay tubes for less waste.....LOTS of reasons I'd even consider such an idea that are because of the property!
                                      ayrabz
                                      "Indecision may or may not be my problem"
                                      --Jimmy Buffett

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by ayrabz View Post
                                        hahaha...Bluey, I appreciate the voice of reason! I think many are missing the point that: the ONLY reason I'm entertaining this is because of the very very limited access areas I have for such. Is second story hay storage ideal? uh...I'd be a moron to think so. I'm trying to: utilize ONLY location (that is not in a ravine. that would not cost a zillion dollars to clear of huge 80 year old trees) that is already accessible via already in place entrance lane for truck deliveries, that is not in a Chesapeake Bay act watershed (the ravines eliminate even if we wanted to (!) clearing----as the bottom of the ravines are a creek that is protected in this watershed., that it is along an extisting fenceline, that if raised above it, I would also have : trailer parking under it, (which I have no where right now to position out of the way) and haying ability and overhang from it for haying station protection from rain, etc... because of having a high second story 'overhang' possibility with drop doors into hay tubes for less waste.....LOTS of reasons I'd even consider such an idea that are because of the property!
                                        I hear you, life is about trade-offs, is it.

                                        In your situation, since you already have to make do, how about just having an aisle high enough to drive a loaded hay trailer and putting the hay up above the horse stalls?
                                        By far not that good, air quality is impacted, when the wind blows around and when feeding.
                                        You still have to get up there to feed, even if you have a broken leg and the fire risk is tremendous.

                                        Knowing all that and accepting that is the way is going to have to be, why not?

                                        Hay elevators that would sit along the hay trailer/truck and lift hay to the loft cost around here about $2000 new, less when used.
                                        You have to keep them running, they tend to break a chain link, the motor quit, etc., always when you are using them, that is also to be considered.
                                        Here, you would have a hard time finding a hay supplier that would want to deliver and stack hay in any but the easiest to access, quickest to unload places.

                                        I expect you will find a way that fits your situation, sure getting plenty of ideas to go by.

                                        Comment

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