6x6 vs 4x4 for pole style woodshed?

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scooby074

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2011
423
Nova Scotia
Im thinking about making a "pole barn" style woodshed for this burning season so I dont have to deal with tarps again this year.

I think maybe 8x10 or 8x12, 8ish ft high. with a shed (lean to) roof (6/12), likely metal, laid on 1x4 strapping

Id like it on skids so I can drag it around or take it with me if I move from this place.

There will be no floor other than dirt, I plan on using pallets for flooring.

Right now Im thinking 4x6 for the skids and 4x4 for the poles. Id cut square tennons on the end of the poles to lock them into mortices in the 4x6 skids.

Id run 4x4 from the front skid to the rear skid to form the side of the bottom skid. Half lap joints to join the skids to the sides.

Siding would be 1x6 boards, laid horizontal, spaced a couple inches apart to allow for airflow.

Question is would it be worthwhile for the added costs to go to all 6x6? Or maybe make the skids 6x6? or so other combination?

Any good free plans or websites to check out for ideas? Something on skids? Ive found many shed plans, but not many are on skids and considered movable.
 

Fastdonzi

Member
Feb 18, 2015
208
East TN
6x6 will be much sturdier. 4x4's flex a lot. I used 4x4 and now wish I'd done 6x6....
 

Offset

Member
Mar 10, 2014
105
Haliburton, Ontario, Canada
I used eight by eight's for mine. I think you want the construction of the shed to be as sturdy as possible. There is a lot of force on the frame once you start stacking the wood in it. Good idea on the skids and keeping the wood off the ground. Mine is in two sections it is 19' long, 8' high at the front 6' high in the back. I bought 15 face chords this year, so I can have dry wood for next year and forever I guess with a proper rotation. I have learn much from this site, dry wood key to safe heating. Still have to put the roof on, wood arrived before the steel did!

Good luck with your project.
 

BenTN

Feeling the Heat
Aug 30, 2015
345
East TN
I would agree with the above, heavier the better if you plan on moving it. Definitely sturdy bracing in the corners since your siding won't offer much help in the way of wall strength.
 

kennyp2339

Minister of Fire
Feb 16, 2014
5,223
07462
I remember that project build, the 1st one you did was priceless
 

Bad LP

Minister of Fire
Nov 28, 2014
1,285
Northern Maine
I don't care for using pallets on the floor. Without going into great detail my floor is PT 8X8's running front to back with PT 3X8X16' guard rail stock perpendicular to them spaced to allow a 8" air flow between them. I was getting really nervous about stacking in there and mis-stepping thus breaking an ankle.

The floor is now covered with a piece of chain link fence stapled in place. Plenty strong with air flow on 3 sides and the floor plus a 4-12 metal roof.
 

gzecc

Minister of Fire
Sep 24, 2008
4,709
NNJ
Compromise and use 4x6.
 
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scooby074

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2011
423
Nova Scotia
This is one that I built for my house in VT. I also built with 4x4 and I would have done 6x6 if again. View attachment 162565
Thats what I want, a little smaller, and no floor! Nice build.

Are the headers 2x10? Single or doubled?

Going 6x6 will almost triple the cost for the posts, but I think it is likely a good idea.
 

scooby074

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2011
423
Nova Scotia

scooby074

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2011
423
Nova Scotia
I would lag bolt everything together and just take it apart to move it.
Other than the time I sell this place, the moving in question is every couple years to cleanout the ditch behind where the shed is supposed to go. Tearing down and reassembling every couple years probably wont work that well. I dont have enough space to put the shed far enough away from the ditch to be able to get the backhoe in there to clean it out without moving the shed.
 

gerry100

Minister of Fire
May 16, 2008
743
NY Capitol Region
I'd go big. 6X6 stronger but offers more nailing area.

Built mine 20 yrs ago but I remember a tip I received.

Look into PT landscape timbers, they may be cheaper than dimensional lumber. Work just as well for a shed.
 

tigger

Burning Hunk
Dec 8, 2013
186
Rhode Island
Make sure to notch the post for the header. You never know when you may need the a strength. This is one that I built for my house in RI. Its on a slope hence the crazy design. The header's were 2x10's. I have since closed in the center bay to make it more of a shed. 20140901_142443.jpg
 
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scooby074

Feeling the Heat
Jan 7, 2011
423
Nova Scotia
Another nice one.

Were those headers single or doubled up 2x10
 

billb3

Minister of Fire
Dec 14, 2007
4,674
SE Mass
You shouldn't need a 6x6 unless you are utilizing crazy wide spans between supports, which also requires crazy tall headers, steel or laminated beams to avoid warping due to the span.
 

Lumber-Jack

Minister of Fire
Dec 29, 2008
2,007
Beautiful British Columbia
If you want something on skids so you can move it around you are better off with a good solid floor and walls to give the skids and roof more strength and support.
I'd go with 3 skids and build the walls out of 2x4s and sheet them. Something like the picture below, but with 3 skids and a full floor. The design below would most likely twist if you tried to pull it any distance, there is no support to keep the skids parallel.
 
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SawDawg

New Member
Sep 23, 2015
52
East TN
4x4's are more likely to twist & bend as they dry and age in the sun. Definitely 6X6 or larger for a structure that tall.
 

Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Dec 28, 2006
17,909
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
I used true 6x8 poles for my shop. 4 feet deep in concrete.

I am more troubled by your attempt to build a pole shed on skids. What makes a pole building strong is that the poles are in the ground and resist tipping over. Your poles pinned to skids will be weak laterally. Like it will blow over since he pole bases are pinned connections.
 

SawDawg

New Member
Sep 23, 2015
52
East TN
A person could always drill holes thru the skids and drive rebar , preferably with welded nut on one end, thru the hole and into the ground for anchorage and sturdiness if choosing the skid design. Wouldn't be as good as the posts into the ground, but would certainly be adequate. Also fairly easy to remove.
 
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