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Old 06-19-2014, 02:19 PM   #1
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Framing a loft in a pole barn


I have an outbuilding/garage that is 12x24x14 (HxLxW). It is constructed with 2x6 wall framing from 4x4 posts. Using 2x12 wood I-Frames the loft will be 12x14 in size.
My question is I was going to make a 12x12x14 frame and then hang the I-Beams inside that once in place but my question is attaching that frame to the barn/garage sides.
Can I just lag bolt the frame to the 4X4's or do I need to also run a 2x4's down the side of each 4x4 under the frame for extra support or should I double the 4x4's?
I plan on drying cedar up there and then use it for storage.

Here are picks of the framing to give you an idea of the structure:



Last edited by drmuz; 06-19-2014 at 02:27 PM.
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Old 06-19-2014, 03:42 PM   #2
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Your post is a bit confusing.How are you attaching the I-beams and at what centers?Are we talking steel I beams?Are you resting these on 4X4's?
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Old 06-19-2014, 03:56 PM   #3
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Sorry for the confusion.
The I-beams are wood, 2x12 size.
I will basically make a frame (12x14) to hang those joists in and then need to attach it to the wall with lag bolts into each 4x4 corner. Question is in the 4 corners where the current 4x4's are for the building, do I just (supplement) run a 2x4 down in each corner to support the frame for the joists or does each of the 4 corners need another 4x4.
Then, in the 12 foot span holding this frame along the side of the building, does the frame for the joists need supports running down to the floor? I'm thinking I do @ 6' and it should be a 4x4.
So 2 questions, one about supporting the corners and one about supporting the sides.
Thanks for your time and apologies for not being clearer.
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Old 06-19-2014, 04:23 PM   #4
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4x4 posts for that size pole barn, that's pathetic. That is a lot of structure to hold up in pole barn fashion on 4x4's and adding to it with a loft. I would want to make sure that the 4x4's under grade are still solid and not rotted at least with 6x6's you have more material there to rot away before you have problems. This is one main reason that I don't like pole barn construction your only as strong as your weakest link and your weakest link is the posts which are subject to rot at all times and no one ever puts gutters on pole barns to get water away from the posts, being poured directly into the ground. If the posts are still in good shape I would be sistering some 4x4's to carry the beams for the loft and possibly be adding some more concrete to the footing under the sistered 4x4's.
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Old 06-19-2014, 04:39 PM   #5
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The building is only 12 X24.I'm in Illinos and we build some huge pole barns on 4 x 4's.These buildings are engineered.Put some lite panels in a roof on one last week that was 40 X60 built on 4X4's in the early 60's.
Back to your post.The loft needs more support and anchors than you intend.
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Old 06-19-2014, 04:45 PM   #6
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Sorry but I didn't build it, the previous owners company built it which is their business. There are no structural issues and it is @ 15 years old, has gutters, the posts are on pillars, I just poured a new cement floor and there is no rot whatsoever anywhere! I am sure the 4x4's are sufficient and no different than the many other pole barns I have seen.
Thanks for your time.
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Old 06-19-2014, 04:58 PM   #7
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Thanks mako1.
"The loft needs more support and anchors than you intend."
So what do you suggest?
If I have a 4x4 on each side that means 6 feet will be the longest span. So should there be a 4x4 4 feet OC?
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Old 06-21-2014, 11:34 AM   #8
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Depends on how much cedar. For drying, that may not be enough space and you may need a fan to circulate air. Heat/moisture tend to sit around at the peak.

So for 12 or 14' span, even double 2x12 beams may be inadequate. I'd fit a single beam between the posts and support with studs,... if that's what you mean.
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Old 06-21-2014, 07:22 PM   #9
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The 14' is across the span. The 12' is along the walls. So the frame for the loft is attached on the 12' sides of which there are 2 4x4's, one for each corner. So I sister the 4x4's and then in the 12' span I was planning on putting 3 4x4's.

Think of a box 12x14 that will be attached on the 12' sides (I will also be attaching (nailing) the back 14' 2x12 to an existing 2x12 header in the back of the building where it was extended 4') and how it should be supported, attaching to the sides and then running trimmer studs down to the floor.

So are the sistered 2x4's down to the floor (trimmer studs) enough or should they be 4x4's?
And having 4x4's running down to the floor at 24" OC along the sides, is that sufficient?

Last edited by drmuz; 06-21-2014 at 07:32 PM.
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Old 06-22-2014, 10:44 AM   #10
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If your floor is 16" o.c., 2x4 16" o.c. on load bearing sides. You can even use 2x3.
Btw, a single 2x10 or 12 beam is like perimeter box beams, so 2x4 every 30" is ok too. Double stud under the ends of beams. Just like openings are framed.
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Old 06-22-2014, 10:51 AM   #11
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Thanks carpdad!
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