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Insulation?

by Jack_Wilson
posted 11-27-2018 12:50 AM


23 replies so far

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

10858 posts in 1846 days


#1 posted 11-27-2018 01:06 AM

There is no miracle that won’t break the bank. Spray foam is expensive.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Jack_Wilson's profile

Jack_Wilson

20 posts in 220 days


#2 posted 11-27-2018 01:22 AM



There is no miracle that won’t break the bank. Spray foam is expensive.

- TheFridge

Oh, I know, THAT’S why I’m looking for a miracle!

-- I'm older than I wanna be, and better looking than I should be.

View tomsteve's profile

tomsteve

935 posts in 1579 days


#3 posted 11-27-2018 01:09 PM



e

Oh, I know, THAT S why I m looking for a miracle!

- Jack_Wilson

i think the miracle youre lookin for is winning numbers for the lotto or relocating to a warmer climate.
its difficult sayin how to go without actually seeing what ya have to start with, but its not going to be cheap.

View clin's profile

clin

1025 posts in 1356 days


#4 posted 11-27-2018 05:47 PM

The least expensive real insulation you could use is batt insulation. Though I doubt that is a good idea in an unsealed structure. But, just to put a lower limit on that, it is in the range of $0.50/sq-ft. Obviously that varies but it is in the ball park.

You have 2 x (32’ + 44’) = 152’ of perimeter. Assume that is just 8’ tall that’s 8×152 = 1,216 sq-ft or about $600 of batt insulation.

If the walls are higher (probably are), then this number goes up.

Just taking the square footage as the roof size (it’s of course more becasue it is sloped), that’s 32×44 = 1,400 sq-ft or about $700.

Both of these are underestimates, but you’d be looking at somewhere in the range of $1,300 in material minimum.

But, as mentioned, I don’t think it is suitable for an unsealed structure. Might be for the ceiling/roof, since that of course is sealed.

But without sealed walls, moisture, dirt, insects and rodents can get in and be a problem. So in all likelihood, spray foam is what would be needed.

I found this foam estimator online. 2” is in the range of $5k-$6k. No idea if this is DIY or their installed cost etc. Just one cost as seen on the internet. But sounds realistic to me.

https://sprayfoamkit.com/help-center/spray-foam-insulation-cost-estimator/

Now, if the wind literally blows through, and spending thousands is off the table, then consider some sort of rolled plastic. Something like 1/2” thick bubble wrap with a radiant barrier (foil) on one or both sides. No idea the cost.

Something like this would provide very little insulation value (too thin). But it would seal out the wind, and the radiant barrier would also help.

Another option is just put up thick plastic sheeting. Again, little to no R-value, but it would keep the wind from blowing through and probably go a long way to holding in some heat.

Also, again since the roof is sealed, you may be able to insulate that with batts, then just hang plastic on the walls.

WARNING!

Make sure anything you use meets code. And code or not, I’d make sure it is fire proof. Just using any old plastic on the walls, could be like lining your shop in gasoline.

-- Clin

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Jack_Wilson

20 posts in 220 days


#5 posted 11-28-2018 12:02 AM

Gentleman, unfortunately you all have told me stuff that I already know. New technologies are coming out all the time and was hoping that there was something new that I was unaware of. So not yet I guess. What I’d really like, (what most of us would like), is to just build a new shop from the ground up, but that’s for a richer man than I at this time. Maybe if I can cross that threshold this summer and make some real money, not just a little here and there, then it would make financial sense to buy a plot and build.

-- I'm older than I wanna be, and better looking than I should be.

View Eric's profile

Eric

79 posts in 233 days


#6 posted 11-28-2018 03:06 AM

Yes many ideashete and all good ones too.

I think your best bet is to start over from scratch with a new building. I do not have to deal with the bitter cold but it does get hot in the summer. Also a climate controlled building is very much better for the tools and your comfort.

I am designing a shop myself and from ground up the exterior and interior finished, my estimate is around 12k. That is for a 16’ x 24’ with a wooden floor, I have to build on a slight slope and do not want the concrete floor. Learning towards a timber frame structure.

Good luck

-- Eric, Upstate South Carolina

View WoodenDreams's profile

WoodenDreams

580 posts in 271 days


#7 posted 11-28-2018 08:21 AM

Since this is a barn, I’d be filling or covering any air gaps to prevent heat loss. You may want to consider putting up a wall with doorway, or even a temporary wall from a cheap plastic tarp. Just like a construction crew putting up plastic on a perimeter, so the can keep the winter out. to lesson the amount of space you need to heat.

View eflanders's profile

eflanders

326 posts in 2211 days


#8 posted 11-28-2018 07:05 PM

Years ago I had my shop in an unheated garage. Living in WI, made it difficult to work comfortably without heat and Summer ventilation. I was able to use kraft faced batts, then I added a vapor barrier. I used a wall mounted propane heater, but my shop was much smaller than yours. This kept much of the heat in and the wind out. But if the shop wasn’t constantly heated to at least 60’ F, I had a real issue with condensation forming on my cold machines as I heated things up for working. The temperature / humidity variable also played havoc on my wood stock.

So what I’m saying is, once you figure out a way to insulate and heat it, keep it heated or you’ll have lots of rusty tools and warped wood.

View Jack_Wilson's profile

Jack_Wilson

20 posts in 220 days


#9 posted 11-28-2018 11:50 PM

Loop

This is what my shop looks like right now, there’s a 30” drift just inside the door that I have to wade through.

-- I'm older than I wanna be, and better looking than I should be.

View bilyo's profile

bilyo

655 posts in 1463 days


#10 posted 11-29-2018 02:10 AM

I’m sure it is worth a lot to have your shop conveniently located. Additionally, you say the rent is reasonable. You don’t say how much money you would be willing to spend, but I’m sure you don;t want to spend a lot on some one else’s property. I wonder if the owner would share in the cost to make some improvements. A 22’ x 32” shop would be pretty respectable. Perhaps he/she would provide materials if you provide labor to tighten up and insulate just half of it. Maybe you would be willing to pay a bit more rent for this to be done. Otherwise, I agree with those above who suggest erecting some temporary enclosure within the barn in order to get a usable space. Do this with the owner’s permission, of course.

View eflanders's profile

eflanders

326 posts in 2211 days


#11 posted 11-29-2018 02:50 PM

Sometimes a guy’s gotta do with what you have to work with, I fully understand!

You may want to start with using house wrap or poly on the interior walls. This will allow the outside appearence to remain consistent. Then put up rigid foam sheets with a foil facing over the house wrap. This will keep the wind & weather outside yet allow some heat to remain inside as you work. House wrap is not very expensive and easily installed. The 4’ × 8’ sheets of rigid foam can be added to the work space as time and money allows. This will help you to stay warmer and your equipment from being snowed on.

BUT be forewarned it could also become a condensation trap as I mentioned in my previous post… You don’t mention what your flooring is. If it’s concrete, you will definately have condensation issues once you heat the place. But if you have a wood floor, you might not!

Good Luck!

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

10858 posts in 1846 days


#12 posted 11-30-2018 03:34 AM

How about a force field? Didn’t they use those on Hoth to keep the snow out?

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Jack_Wilson's profile

Jack_Wilson

20 posts in 220 days


#13 posted 11-30-2018 10:50 AM

I don’t know anything at all about Hoth, but I’m all about the force field! Amazon prime?

-- I'm older than I wanna be, and better looking than I should be.

View tomsteve's profile

tomsteve

935 posts in 1579 days


#14 posted 11-30-2018 02:10 PM

howz about this:
https://www.oreillyauto.com/flux-capacitor

do some time traveling and pick the winning lotto numbers for this weekend

View smitdog's profile

smitdog

421 posts in 2466 days


#15 posted 11-30-2018 04:06 PM

I’m with eflanders – my workshop is actually out in my barn which has three open bays so there is absolutely no stopping the weather. You could use a reflective low R-value wrap to seal out the weather – something like one of these from Menards and then as time and money allow you can add rigid foam panels to boost your R-value.

Since my shop space is only part of the interior area I just unrolled the stuff up on side – across the trusses and let it down on the other side and it just hangs there. It really does make it a lot nicer to work in the cold weather. I sectioned off maybe 15’x20’ or so and I heat it with a little propane bullet style heater. I don’t get it really warm but it’s enough for a light jacket or sweatshirt and no gloves most of the time, so maybe 45-50 degrees. If you tacked some of that up to the outside walls you’d definitely stop the snow drifts from coming in at least!

-- Jarrett - Mount Vernon, Ohio

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

10858 posts in 1846 days


#16 posted 11-30-2018 08:21 PM

Both is the icy world in Star Wars so you know their force fields worked. At least until the shield generators were blown up.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View gerrym526's profile

gerrym526

279 posts in 4169 days


#17 posted 12-06-2018 07:12 PM

I’m in the process of designing a new workshop building myself and saw your post on insulation, so thought I’d reply.
Since I’m retired and not rich, have to think about the same issues you point out regarding the building you do your work in.
Some of my thoughts-
-I agree with every lumberjock here who said it’s not worth trying to insulate what you have today. In my part of the country (northern ID), you have what is called a pole barn building, basically impossible to insulate and heat economically.
-building from scratch costs money, but you might be able to put enough “sweat equity” into the process to lower your cost.
-my experience has been in very small shops (pictures of my previous basement workshop 320 sq ft, are in my profile), so one approach I would suggest is to really focus on how much space you need for your work first. You have basically 1500 sq ft of barn that (no offense meant here) is poorly organized and cluttered. While your tool collection over the years has netted lots of really cool equipment, ask the question-”what do I really use” and “can I get the same tool in a smaller size”-talking here about stationary tools.

If you find that better work flow and stationary tool organization (not to mention lumber and project organization) allows you to reduce the space significantly, you may find yourself with an affordable “build from scratch” solution. If you reach that point, you might find you can live with a well built 2 car garage sized building that you can very cheaply insulate yourself, and install an economical heat source (e.g. overhead propane shop heater).

Hope this thought process is helpful to you. I have to believe if you reach a goal of a well insulated shop (built from scratch), it will make your hours spent there more enjoyable, and increase your productivity.

-- Gerry

View Mosquito's profile

Mosquito

9725 posts in 2653 days


#18 posted 12-06-2018 07:39 PM

Snow is a fairly good insulator as well, just let the barn get burried, that’s free :-)

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN - http://www.youtube.com/MosquitoMods - http://www.TheModsquito.com

View JCamp's profile

JCamp

970 posts in 911 days


#19 posted 12-06-2018 07:45 PM

A “cheap” way to help your self would be to get some very wide rolls of plastic and tack them along the walls and ceiling. That might help to keep the outside air from blowing in and help keep the warm air inside from escaping.
Another cheapish thing u could do is build a little area in the barn kind of like a spray booth for cars and work in it with a heater when u want to keep warm.
As already stated there really is no real cheap way but what I’ve mentioned would/could help you get through another winter or two till your ready to build your shop. If you could talk the owner of the barn into put up metal siding on the outside that would help you too and you’d likely be able to talk him into that verses insulating the whole thing….... or offer to pay more rent to get what you want.

-- Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy might

View Jack_Wilson's profile

Jack_Wilson

20 posts in 220 days


#20 posted 12-07-2018 01:38 AM

SO guys, thank you for all your answers. Here is a little back ground about me, I’m a 38 year veteran of construction, I can build, (and have built), anything from a shed to an $8,000,000 church, and anything in between. Having said that, I’ve learned that there is always something new coming out and sometimes I’m late to the game finding out about it. Hence the miracle question at the start of this thread. Ever optimistic, I had hoped for a new inexpensive product. As for the glamorous life of a contractor, It might come as a surprise to some of you that for all the cool projects I’ve been involved in, I still need to work to pay my bills, so like Gerry, I’m not rich. I’ve squandered my money on tools and wood, (as opposed to booze and women). Gerry, I have plans to go into the shop full time, and get out of the field, so I can’t, at this time, shrink my tool inventory. BUT, you are right, my shop is a disorganized mess, (no offense taken, it is what it is). That needs to change, and all the construction materials so neatly stacked around need to go.

-- I'm older than I wanna be, and better looking than I should be.

View shawnn's profile

shawnn

143 posts in 1725 days


#21 posted 12-07-2018 11:39 PM

I found a source for polystyrene (I think) waste that is small 1/8” to 1/4” sawcut scrap that I plan to use in my pole barn shop. The company manufactures archery targets & will give you all you want as they have to dispose of it. I spoke to a guy there who said he used it in the attic of an old house he lived in and it worked great as insulation. I’m going to fill the walls (dense pack, tamping it) and put a bunch over the ceiling like blown-in cellulose. Maybe you can find a similar source in your area? This company is near Jasper, IN, not sure where you’re located but if you’re interested and Jasper is within reasonable distance get back to me and I’ll dig up the info.

View Jack_Wilson's profile

Jack_Wilson

20 posts in 220 days


#22 posted 12-08-2018 03:00 AM



I found a source for polystyrene (I think) waste that is small 1/8” to 1/4” sawcut scrap that I plan to use in my pole barn shop. The company manufactures archery targets & will give you all you want as they have to dispose of it. I spoke to a guy there who said he used it in the attic of an old house he lived in and it worked great as insulation. I m going to fill the walls (dense pack, tamping it) and put a bunch over the ceiling like blown-in cellulose. Maybe you can find a similar source in your area? This company is near Jasper, IN, not sure where you re located but if you re interested and Jasper is within reasonable distance get back to me and I ll dig up the info.

- shawnn

Shawnn, thanks for the tip, I live in western NY, near Buffalo, but out in the sticks. My shop is also essentially a pole barn with a framed wall on each side which separates my section from other parts of the barn on my left and right. I have a large 16×10 sliding barn door which opens for my only point of entry. It’s great for moving equipment or stock in and out, but terrible for drafts.

-- I'm older than I wanna be, and better looking than I should be.

View shawnn's profile

shawnn

143 posts in 1725 days


#23 posted 12-08-2018 01:42 PM


Shawnn, thanks for the tip, I live in western NY, near Buffalo, but out in the sticks. My shop is also essentially a pole barn with a framed wall on each side which separates my section from other parts of the barn on my left and right. I have a large 16×10 sliding barn door which opens for my only point of entry. It s great for moving equipment or stock in and out, but terrible for drafts.

- Jack_Wilson

My building is 30×50, half of which is dedicated to the wood shop. I am in the process of framing a divider wall (finally) so I can get the woodworking shop half insulated and temperature/humidity controlled. I built the building with this in mind, the shop side has an insulated concrete floor with PEX loops for radiant heating. My plan is to fill the walls as I sheath them from the floor up then sheath the ceiling and insulate it. I am putting a 6×8 garage door in the divider wall to bring material & equipment through. Hopefully I’ll have it finished one of these days!

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