Monday, December 8, 2014

Pallet Projects: Hay Shed

The last thing I want to do in the dead of winter is make a feed store run. The trip itself isn't the issue, it's having to unload multiple bales and bags when there's snow on the uneven ground and ice beneath the snow that gives me issues. To avoid this annoyance, every fall I pick up enough hay, straw, shavings, etc, to get the rabbits and chickens through an entire year.  In the past I just set it on pallets and tarped it, but the tarps always tear and leak and the bottom bales always seem to be trashed. This year I decided to build a hay shed on top of our storm cellar, which puts it within 3 steps of the rabbit house door and right next to where the truck backs up.


To get started, I picked up 10 pallets from my trusty free pallet source. And a spool, which will eventually become an outside table but not today.


I wanted to use 4x4 posts on the corners, so my husband brought home two massive pallets from work. They'd been used to support some CNC machines that had shipped in. Look at all those 4x4 posts!


I set the 4x4 on the corner and screwed the two corner wall pallets to it, then screwed them into the right floor pallet. This was repeated on the other side. I then took a 4x4 post and added it to the front corner by sliding it down inside the side wall pallet. 


With the three sides and four corner posts in place, I got some of the scrap slats from the CNC pallets and filled in the gaps along the outside walls. 


Next came the roof. I took two 2x4x12 boards and screwed them to the outside posts. Another one runs down the center, held in place with metal rafter holder things I had left over from another project. 


I cut the left side 4x4 posts to be level with the rafters, then added braces between the rafters using 2x4 scraps. 


Using a Sawzall with a 7" metal cutting blade, I removed the slats off some pallets by sliding it down between the 2x4 braces and the slats, cutting the nails. Because seriously, who wants to beat these things apart with a hammer? You'll split more slats than you salvage. I used the slats to fill in the gaps, and my husband cut the ones to fit that back angle because it's his table saw and he doesn't want me messing with it. :D


Ta Da! I lined the inside walls and pallet floor with feed sacks and an old torn up tarp to keep the hay and straw from sifting down into the pallet floor and creating low income mouse housing. Those feed sacks are basically the same material as the tarp so they last forever. I also slipped some of the 2x4 from the ripped pallets into the floor pallets to add additional bracing to the floor, although I came up short one.


And then, because my dogs will spend their days alternately peeing on the hay and tearing the bales up to play in, I added two more pallets for doors. Except I don't have any hinges so I'll need to go get some this week. I'll also fill in the gaps so the doors are solid, and then stitch a couple of feed sacks together to make a sort of roman shade I can pull down from the top and keep out the rain and snow.



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