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Old 09-26-2006, 10:45 AM   #1
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Old barn lumber as interior paneling


My husband is tearing down and old barn so that we may use the lumber as interior paneling in our basement. Other than tearing it down, we aren't sure what needs to be done. Does it need to be dried out??? and how would you do that?? Does it need to be treated, cleaned??? Any help is greatly appreciated as we are very ready to start this project. Thanks

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Old 09-26-2006, 12:05 PM   #2
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Old barn lumber as interior paneling


I doubt you need to do anything other than inspect for bugs, termites etc. Stacking it inside your home somewhere for a period of time would allow it to acclimate reagrding the humidity level, but I don't see where that would be a problem for paneling.

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Old 09-26-2006, 06:19 PM   #3
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Old barn lumber as interior paneling


Harleysilo is right on. Other than checking for bugs I would just install and be done with it.

As for installing it in your basement, don't let the wood touch the floor or else any moisture in the concrete will wick up the wood and introduce rot.

Dave.
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Old 09-26-2006, 07:53 PM   #4
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Old barn lumber as interior paneling


You might want to stack it in the basement for a week and test the "smell factor". A customer of mine finished a basement with old barn wood, and sank a pile of money into it. The 450 sq/ft rennovation came in at nearly 22K when all the trades were done. That was almost 10 years ago. That basement still smells like hog crap to this very day.
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Old 09-26-2006, 07:54 PM   #5
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Old barn lumber as interior paneling


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You might want to stack it in the basement for a week and test the "smell factor". A customer of mine finished a basement with old barn wood, and sank a pile of money into it. The 450 sq/ft rennovation came in at nearly 22K when all the trades were done. That was almost 10 years ago. That basement still smells like hog crap to this very day.
Now that's funny.
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Old 09-26-2006, 07:58 PM   #6
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Old barn lumber as interior paneling


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Now that's funny.
Yes, it is. But every time I go to their house to do any work, I feel so badly for them. They're probably used to the smell after all these years, and think it has "gone away", but I know that their guests can certainly smell it because I sure can.
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Old 09-26-2006, 11:14 PM   #7
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Old barn lumber as interior paneling


We built a 28' high X 42' long 2.5-story A-frame on the waterfront of a farm in 1977 and we still live in it today. We used c1906 barn boards throughout.
It has 3' kneewalls front to back, upstairs and down, and boxed beams ground floor to peak with the salvaged barn boards.
They were rough sawn, random width, random thickness and weathered gray board-and-batten. (There were no animal odors in any of it.) Some of it is 14" wide and 1.5" thick.
We carefully checked and culled it for active insect infestation. The main thing that we found were a number wood-boring beetles, which we zapped with mineral spirits via large hypodermic needles into the wood. Anything that looked like termites was automatically excluded.
The boards have carpenter bee holes, nail holes, knot holes, naturally weathered grain, etc.
After it was all built in place, we stained it all to blend it together color-wise with a semi-transparent oil-based gray stain.
Still looks great today, and we've never had any trouble with it and it's maintenance-free, except for vacumming dust off once in a great while.
I feel sorry for those folks with the hog pen boards. That odor will probably never go completely away, and the only thing worse is human. Maybe they can spray treat it with Febreeze someway. That stuff is an amazing odor-killer.
Mike
Edit - A tip on installation: Since you can see through and between most barn boards due to knot holes, rough edges, etc., we used the unmarked-backside-out of black 30 lb roofing felt as a backer on the framing before nailing it up. It just creates a good solid "shadow" instead of letting the insulation or framing show through.

Last edited by Mike Swearingen; 09-26-2006 at 11:22 PM.
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:18 PM   #8
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Old barn lumber as interior paneling


Thanks for all of the advice. Our old barn is one of many still standing on an old homestead the family is about to sell (we've been putting off signing the purchase agreement so we can get our materials). Smell shouldn't be a problem .

The thought to do this first crossed my mind a few years ago as an inexpensive way to finish our walk out basement. Initially I wanted tongue and groove knotty pine, but then the rustic look seemed appealing. I had totally canned the idea (i.e. my husband never got around to getting the barn boards) until my mother mentioned that she watched a television show that showcased a home that had redone the entire interior in barn lumber. They had done angled boards on the bottom, set a horizontal board as a chair rail, then hung vertical boards on top. I thought that sounded pretty cool, so that's our plan.

Thanks for the black paper idea!!!
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:51 PM   #9
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Old barn lumber as interior paneling


Quote:
Originally Posted by mdshunk View Post
You might want to stack it in the basement for a week and test the "smell factor". A customer of mine finished a basement with old barn wood, and sank a pile of money into it. The 450 sq/ft rennovation came in at nearly 22K when all the trades were done. That was almost 10 years ago. That basement still smells like hog crap to this very day.
Unless interior boards and beams are used, the aroma should not be noticable. I was in a home that was finished in barn siding...looked very good...lots of charachter, but it smelled like hay...I thought it smelled great, but the HO's said it was fast loosing it's appeal...I belive they went in and sealed it with a satin sealer, and it sharpened the look up even more, and killed the oder. Something to consider.

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