Steel quonsets | Living the Country Life

Steel quonsets

Not everyone needs a big barn
Photo courtesy University of Tennesee

Radio interview source: Jay Samuelson, Regional Director, Weatherstar Company


Listen to the radio mp3 or read below

Fancy outbuildings and barns look nice, but sometimes all you need is a basic shelter to store hay or equipment. Many people put up steel buildings shaped like an arch, called quonsets.  

Jay Samuelson is the regional director of an industrial steel building company. He says quonsets range in width from 25-feet up to 70-feet, and the length can be as long or short as your budget allows. Samuelson says the cost to construct one is about $4-$6 per square foot. The price also depends on whether you leave the ends open or close it up.

"You find a lot of them that leave the ends open for say, hay storage or running large equipment in and out," says Samuelson. "More often than not in the smaller buildings, people will frame their own ends into them. We make a full line of end walls for the building, they are suitable for grain storage which makes them real heavy duty and it tends to add quite a bit of cost to the building. But if you're putting the camper, or the boat or something like that in you're probably just going to frame it in and put an overhead door in it."

Samuelson about 60% of their customers erect the building themselves. It can have a concrete or dirt floor. Anchor the building down by concreting it right into the footing or bolt it to a base plate. This makes it easy to take down the building and move it to a new location.

Samuelson says what many people like the most about these structures is that there's little maintenance.

"I've got people coming in here who have had this building for 30,40,50-years and I'm always asking people what they like best about their building and what the uses are," says Samuelson. "Just about always they tell me the fact that they've had it for 35-years or whatever, they've never had to seal the roof, or pound tin on it, or do anything to it.  The no maintenance aspect is really the hallmark of the building." 

Ever wondered about the history of the quonset?


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