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Looking at Purchasing a Steel Building

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by bassin4507, Mar 28, 2005.

  1. bassin4507

    bassin4507 Registered Member

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    I am looking at putting up a 50X60 insulated steel bulding. Most of the quotes I have gotten are from $25,000-$15,800. Has anyone delt with any of these companies before, because every one of them tells you a different story. The best price I got was from Olympia Steel, but they are not AISC (American Institute of Steel Constructors) certified, so does this mean I should not deal with them? I would rather pay more for a building and deal with a good company and have no problems putting the building up myself.
     
  2. dwoods

    dwoods 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    I have never personally dealt with any company myself directly but my dad and I have poured the slab and did other masonry work for steel buildings mostly for barns. I know a couple were from Olympia witch is near Pittsburgh Pa so that may be why they got them from them. They seem to be able to be constructed fairly quickly and if I needed a building as big as yours I would get a steel building. . Most of these buildings clamp to a cement slab so it is imperative that the slab is square and the right dimensions.
     
  3. Madbomber88

    Madbomber88 1/2 ton status

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    I put one up with my brother last winter. He went through steelbuilding.com. His was 38x55 and it cost him about $10,000 delivered. Has too large garage doors, fully insulated and a really nice place to work. We put it up ourselves, so we saved a ton of money with that, but it is alot of work. Gotta pour the slab and then the footings exactly right. We even put radiant floor heating in the concrete when it was poured but we haven't bought a heating source yet. Not sure if you have checked out steelbuilding.com, but we had a great experience with them, was delivered when they said it would, went together as it should have, and they were there to answer questions the whole time.
    Just my two cents...
     
  4. bassin4507

    bassin4507 Registered Member

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    Thanks for the information. I plan on paying someone to do the cement work for me, and doing the rest myslef. There is a Olympia Steel in PA, but they are the ones that aren't certified, but they say all their buildings still meet code. They did however give me the best price. SteelBuilding.com's price isn't far off from that, so it might be better to deal with them I am thinking.
    What did you use to put the building up? Just a forklift? Was there any cutting or welding involved?
     
  5. Resurrection_Joe

    Resurrection_Joe 1 ton status

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    I don't know which is which, but I know you need to buy the right brand. My shop is pretty good, but I've seen them being blown apart in high wind around here.

    Hope that helps
     
  6. Madbomber88

    Madbomber88 1/2 ton status

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    All we used was a bobcat and a bobcat excavator, the small type. We bolted the butresses together on the ground and then lifted them up with chains and bolted them over the fittings. No welding. The framing is easy, it's putting on the skin that stinks because it takes a lot of self tapping screws and your arm will sure get a workout. Once it is up, they are extremely solid.
     
  7. TorkDSR

    TorkDSR 1/2 ton status

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    we got ours from kentucky steel.

    i'm impressed. its not insulated. whole thing goes together with about 5000 self tapping screws. so be sure your cordless drill is up to par.

    30x40 12' door and a 8' on the other side 6 skylights. they call it a "kit" but you have to cut all the sheet yourself... many grinding wheels later, it wsa done
     
  8. dontoe

    dontoe 3/4 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    I'm gonna do the concrete and more than likely buy from U.S. Buildings. Clicky!
     
  9. diesel4me

    diesel4me 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Consider this..

    Have you thought about a quonset type building??--I built STEELMASTER 20'x40' one on my parents property,bought it in 1992 brand new,deliverd free from Toronto Canada to MA ,for 4,050 dollars(and no sales tax,since the company is located in VA)--they now have gable roof style arches that look more "residential" than the "round top" style I bought,for no much more money..I am very happy with my garage,I do wish I had done a few things different,like put a vapor barrier under the slab,and put radiant heat tubing in the slab,but for what I paid,you cant touch a regular stick built one,or a pole building--and it never needs to be painted or shingled--mine looks like the day I built it 13 years ago,other than some bolts are rusty--

    The slab and footings and floor cost nearly as much as the building!--it weighs only 3500 lbs,less than the vehicle parked in it!-I put it up all alone in 2 weeks,after a few friends helped me put up the first 2 arches--we bolted a complete arch together on the ground and tipped it up using a long 4x4 post (16') rigged into my trailer hitch on my truck(one whole arch weighs only 140 lbs on my size building).. :laugh:

    I like the fact it has no rafters in the way,perfect for a lift--and it has survived some really bad blizzards and heavy snow too--I've seen a few bigger ones collapse,but mine and an identical one a neighbor bought 4 years ago are holding up fine!(I didnt put any fiberglass "Skylight" panels in mine,I think they weaken the building too much for our heavy snow loads here--so its dark in there,you need the lights on constantly--unless you put windows in the endwalls and doors-
    -I didnt have the money at the time,so I didnt put any--I like it better without them in a way--no one can see in or break in)..

    There are many companies selling theese buildings now,and prices hadn't changed much as of last fall when I priced another one a guy was interested in when he saw mine--but steel prices are rising fast,so I would not wait much longer if you plan on getting ANY steel building...Mine was bought from www.steelmaster.com but the bill of lading said it came from Future Steel Buildings in Toronto,who also has ads for their own line of quonset buildings--others are listed on Google under Quonset Buildings...I think they are a good rugged,cheap way to have a garage--and if you have to,you could unbolt it and move it,or take it with you!(I wouldn't,its easier and cheaper to buy another one!).. :crazy:
     
  10. Butch

    Butch 1/2 ton status

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    I work as a construction consultant for Butler Buildings. Ours are the Cadillac of buildings, and more suited to really large warehouse/commercial type settings, so they would be on the high end of the prices you have there.

    I do deal with a lot of the other manufacturers though and there are a lot of differences. The big thing you need to look out for is the type of paint they use on their coils. You want a minimum of silicon polyester, but preferably Kynar. If they have anything else beware as it will fade to a chaulky white within 5 years. Make sure you are being quoted painted walls and galvalume roof panels. Some will quote full galvalume with an upcharge to go to painted walls. Check to see who is including gutters and downspouts and who is not. Are they providing just the framed openings for overhead doors (this is the norm) or are they including the doors. Are enough man doors included to meet your local code. Here you can not be more that 75' from an exit door, maybe yours is different.

    Ask for estimated weights for the structure, snow load and wind load it is designed for. If their answer is it is designed for your area be cautious. A better answer would be we design to say 30lb psf snow load 5lb collateral load and 80mph wind load. This will give you an idea of what you are comparing between the different manufacturers. If you plan to hang much from your purlins, or set an AC unit on the roof be sure you make the manufacturer aware of the weights of these items. Most purlins can not support more than a 50lb point load. Also insure that each company will be giving you a set of engineered stamped drawings and an anchor bolt plan. Otherwise you will have trouble getting a building permit to erect it.

    A couple of brokers out there will screw you given the chance. General Steel is under investigation right now for shady advertising and sales practices. They price you a 50 x 60 building for what seems like a good deal, get a deposit that is non refundable, then ask oh by the way do you want and doors with that building, or trim, or gutters, or insulation and all of a sudden your price nearly doubles, but they have you deposit as ransom.

    Lack of AISC certification would not cause me too much alarm. I would compare that to saying you can't kill a deer unless you are a member of a hunting club. If they meet your local codes then no worries.

    That is all I can think of at the moment. Good Luck in your purchase
     
  11. bassin4507

    bassin4507 Registered Member

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    Sorry for bringing this old thread up, I have been out fishing and just got back home. Those prices don't include the doors because every company tells me I can get it cheaper locally and get a service plan with the door. My county has a 30lb snow load and a 90 mph wind load and all the buildings I have priced are supposed to meet that, so I building permit wouldn't be a problem.
    I am going to see if I can find someone that has a building from olympia steel and ask them if they like the building and dealing with olympia. I want to make sure I get a good building at a decent price.
     
  12. diesel4me

    diesel4me 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Mine is holding up good...

    My quonset style garage is holding up real good considering the weather we had the past 10 years!--its made of Galvalume steel,mine is 22 gauge,but you can get it as thick as 18 gauge--the snow load rating is 40+lbs per square foot,and the wind load rating is 147 mph!,on my size and gauge building--since mine is on the 'thin" side,I'd say its a bit stonger than what its rated for...the steel panels still look new,while my homebuilt "endwalls" are plywood-paint peels off in 6 months ,I wish in a way I'd gone with the steel endwalls,but they were 800 bucks each!--so I built both of mine for much less than half of that...sucks having to paint them so often though,while the rest of the building is maintenence free...

    There is a steel building company right down the street on RT 44 called "Space Metal Buildings"--they erect the usual "I" beam frame and steel panel buildings--I went there to inquire about a garage sized building in 1992 when I decided to build a garage--but they did not seem too enthused about such a "small" building,though the do make them..after waiting 20 minites to talk with a salesman,I got up and left!--maybe its different now,but I have heard they are in financial difificulty--..

    After going to Morton Buildings in Norton Ma,and talking with a rep there,I learned a "pole barn" style garage 30x30 ft would have cost 13,000 bucks back then!--and NO concrete floors!--so I bought the steelmaster building,and I have been very satisfied....

    I see your in westport--not too far from me!--if you want to take a ride to look at my garage,or the "twin" a few houses away,just let me know,I'd be happy to show my garage to you if you'd like... :crazy:
     
  13. odoa3

    odoa3 1/2 ton status

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    My father bought 30x40 from Kentucky Steel three or four years ago. Because it was going on top of a mountain, in Kodiak, Alaska he reinforced it with two by six's in between the metal beams and added a loft. Code calls for it withstand 110 mph winds- and it has done just fine so far. He gets those winds a couple times a year. The building inspector said with the added reinforcement wind will never be an issue. He heats it with a Toyo stove, that kicks on automatically when it gets 50 degrees inside. The only issue we have had was when the snow melted the first year and put about an inch of water inside. New garage door seals fixed that. Thumbs up from us for Kentucky Steel.
     
  14. 3 on the tree

    3 on the tree 1/2 ton status

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    Get lots of catalogs with pictures. Sit down and spec the building complete, doors, windows, insulation trim. If you are going with local purchase for doors and windows, pick them out beforehand and get the rough opening sizes to include in your specs. I got screwed on a couple of jobs cause the quoted price was for a "box"- minus doors, windows, trim, gutters. Just like shopping for a new car, make sure you include everything you want, and get it in writing when you close the deal, no handshakes.
     
  15. bassin4507

    bassin4507 Registered Member

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    I would like to go with the quonset style but the building is going up next two my parents new house and my mom doesn't like the looks of the style. She'll only allow me to put up the traditional pitched roof style. The other thing is the quonset style can only be up to 30' wide or something like that, to meet the county codes, because there are no structrual supports. I went to Space Buildings, but they never called me back with a price. Right now it's between Olympia Steel, Arco Steel, Steel Building.com, or US metal buidling.
     
  16. diesel4me

    diesel4me 1 ton status Premium Member

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    no problem!!

    They do make Quonset's that have a pitched gable roof rather than the traditional "round top" ones like I ended up with( got mine cheaper when the people who were going to buy it decided to go to the gable roof style instead--it had just become available right after they put a down payment on the first one..) Look at some of the websites,like www.steelmaster.com

    I wasn't aware of any building codes limiting the size of a quonset building--I live in Bristol County,and when I built mine the building inspector didnt say anything about restictions on width or length,but he was concerned about height--he was afraid I was planning on storing or fixing 18 wheelers in my garage!-especially when he heard I wanted a 10' high door--I told him my garage is worthless unless I can park my pickup with a slide in camper on it inside!--and I wanted to buy an RV in the future..maybe codes have changed since 1992 when I built mine..

    I know of at least 3 of them that are over 50' wide in nearby towns,and high too,they have survived many blizzards,all of hem have been there since I was in high school,and I'm 46 now!--a few have collapsed during heavy wet snowstorms due to ice build up,but in the 2 cases I knew the owners,they blamed too many skylight panels and the other one wasn't fully erected,it had no endwalls,it could not hold the weight of the ice and snow without them--the owner was impressed as to how much it took to bring it down though,even without the endwalls!..(just as many steel "I" beam buildings collapsed during the same time period,so its not that a Quonset is "weak")

    I'm not trying to sell you on quonset style buildings--I know not all people like the looks of them,but the other "new" peaked roof ones look much like any other wooden building,especially if you build your own ends,and use overhead doors instead of those ugly "airplane hanger" style sliding ones that suck in winter ice and snow,and get ruined by high winds.But for the price,its hard to beat them--they arent just a tin garden shed....

    .I made 300 bucks back from the company when 3 others who were intersested in quonset garages were sent to my house by the company to look a real life one over--the 3 who bought one entitled me to 100 bucks each for the trouble of showing them my garage--I told them to send me a busload!!--I havent had any calls in many years though,so I guess there is a lot of others to look at now in our area..

    Its a huge decision to build a garage on ANY property--so much to consider,location,drainage,setback from property lines,finding competent contractors (The foundation MUST be exact on a metal building--not much "fudge factor" in metal buildings like wooden ones--choose your foundation contractor VERY carefully!)and there is the issue of size,cost,etc..

    I know what it entails--not in any hurry to do it again,since laws and codes are most likely more anal than ever now,especially here in MA...Good luck with whatever style you choose--I like mine because its hard to burn down while welding,cutting and working on vehicles.,unlike a wooden garage... :crazy:
     

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