Model of a Suspension Barn

This model is an exact replica of an existing barn located in the Rock Springs area in Wisconsin

These Suspension Barns required more large timbers to carry the weight because of the free stable basement area
The different types of construction to look for include:
  • Large timbers
  • Mortise and tendon joints pinned with hardwood pins
  • First floor supported by 6 (2 1/2") steel rods
  • Roof Rafters half lapped and pinned 
  • 1 inch thick roof boards
  • Choice of hand split cedar shingles or standing ridge tin roof
  • Siding tight with batten strips or siding with spacers for ventilation
  • Large sliding door for easy opening
  • Hay shoots for feeding cattle in basement
  • Wide boards for flooring
  • Laid up lime stone wall, quarried  locally
  • Large hay mow for putting loose hay in the mow
  • Cupola on the roof for updraft ventilation

Note:  You may notice the large timbers are walnut.  In WW II, the military was in need of dry walnut wood to be used for gun stocks.  They went to South-west Wisconsin where there was a surplus of walnut timbers in old barns  The government would build the owners a new barn if they could have the walnut timber to build gun stocks for the war effort.

(Click on picture to view larger picture)

<Free Stall Basement
No posts, Cut limestone block from local quarry
Hay mow showing timber framing and bracing>

<Timber framing with mortise and tendon joints with hardwood pins
Hay loft showing 2 1/2 inch suspension rods and bracing>

<Picture showing flooring.  All wood coated with linseed oil.
Oak rafters, half lap joints and pinned>

<     Rafters half lapped and pinned.
  Roof boards 1" X 12" oak
Note flooring laid on angle for strength>

<1" X 12" oak roof boards
Roof with cedar shingles.   1" X 12" vertical siding with batten strips.>

<Roof showing standing ridge metal roofing.
Complete with cupola on roof, sliding door, walkin doors and large hay mow door.>

This model in currently on display in the wood working shop