Hey, folks! Barn Geek here, and in today’s video, we’re tackling the installation of these floor joists. You might remember seeing them in a previous video where we showcased these Cottonwood floor joists. It’s been a couple of weeks since we installed them, and they’re holding up well—no significant bending, twisting, or warping. So it looks like this experiment with Cottonwood is a success, and we’re planning to continue using them.

These floor joists are 4 inches by 6 inches, and since Cottonwood can be a bit heftier, we’ve spaced them at 24 inches on center. Typically, our plans call for 2 by 6 or 2 by 8 floor joists spaced at 16 inches on center, but the flexibility in our plans allows for variations based on materials.

About Cottonwood

Cottonwood, a species related to Poplar or Aspen, is considered a soft hardwood. It’s often used in construction and has been popular for centuries. We’re experimenting with Cottonwood because, once dry, it becomes quite strong and durable. However, it’s crucial to handle it correctly during the drying process to prevent warping.

Cottonwood has its unique characteristics, and once dried, it’s strong and resilient. It’s often used for various applications, like constructing log bridges across creeks or as crane mats to support heavy machinery. While it may not be sought after by commercial sawmills, we find it valuable for our projects, especially considering its abundance on our property.

Our Project

This barn project, serving as our farm shop, is a long-term endeavor. We’re taking our time to ensure we get things right, using resources like Cottonwood from our land. The barn will serve multiple purposes, from tractor storage to a woodshop upstairs.

Cottonwood is abundant on our property, and if this experiment continues to be successful, it could significantly benefit us in terms of cost and sustainability. We’ll keep you updated on the progress of this barn build, so be sure to subscribe to the channel.

Step 1: Understanding the U Bracket

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