Motorcycle Barn Shed

Motorcycle Barn

The motorcycle barn was design and executed with storage in mind.  When I met the customer, we took a walk through his garage.  He showed me all the things he wanted to get out of there and into his shed.  He wanted to be able to park his cars in the garage again.  I think we can all relate.  Then we discussed how we could build his shed to fit a very specific space in his back yard and what it would take to park his street bike in there.

The Plan

We knew that I would need to reinforce the floor.  During the project, he added a fully wrapped loft, an accessory wall, and a diamond plated ramp.  The whole load of extras are listed below.

  • Overall size 12′ x 10′
  • Overall height 14′
  • Reinforced floor
  • One sliding window
  • Dual doors
  • One interior shop light
  • One exterior light (solar with motion sensors)
  • Two interior outlets
  • Wrap around loft
  • Diamond plated ramp
  • Two vents

This project took just over 4 full days to build.  I’ll walk through this project in stages

The Build

The Floor
The reinforced floor was not really a major undertaking.  Just more wood.  I doubled the amount of 4×4 skids underneath the floor that I normally would have done.  I also shifted the extra pieces the right side of the floor where the motorcycle was to be stored.  Using 3/4 inch osb plywood, liquid nails, and double nailing patterns, this floor was ready for anything.  I ended up adding another layer of 1/2 osb just to add more stability increasing the thickness to over 1 inch (nominal).
The Walls
The walls were installed on 24″ centers using siding sheets.  Nothing special here other than making sure that we had 6′ walls to ensure that he overall height of the roof and lofts were the desired length. 
The Rafters
For anyone that has built barn-style or gambrel roofs, they know how much of challenge these can be to do on your own.  I ended up connecting two of them with a spreader block then lifting up one end at a time to secured them in place.  The rest went pretty smooth.  I will note that I usually make the gussets (where the rafter pieces join) out of scrap plywood.  I opted for mending plates this time.  Not sure I’ll do that again.  That was a lot of hammering.  It was definitely a workout.  I had to switch hands often when my grip strength was spent.
The Rafter Shift
This was a fun nuance to this project.  I got all the rafters up and installed a sheet of plywood on the east side only to find out that one of the rafters shifted a few inches.  That happens often when making your own rafters but I wasn’t able to stand on them or put much leverage from the side or top.  I opted to use my bodyweight and test out my jungle gym skills.  It worked like a charm!
Once the rafters were in place, I needed to sheet the rest of the roof, and walls for the top half.  Once that was all done, it become apparent how much space the inside of this shed would have.  That is when the customer wanted to increase the loft from just one side to a wrap around loft to take advantage of the space.
The Accessory Wall
Moving on to the inside of the shed, we started with an accessory wall.  Basically, he wanted to have a fully sheeted wall to install some modular hanging systems.  
The Loft
Moving upwards to the loft, we raised it up a few inches so that the customer could walk underneath without needing to duck down.  Using 4×4 beams, I installed a 4′ deep loft in a u-shape around the entire loft essentially giving it a second floor.
The Doors
Installing doors can be tricky but this one turned out perfect the first go around.  He wanted a 6’x6′ opening to easily bring in the motorcycle and maneuver around it.  This is when we realized that we needed a ramp.  The ramp needed to rise a total of about 7 inches.  Using 3/4″ pressure treated plywood and diamond plating, I made a solid ramp to roll the bike in no problem.

The Result

The Motorcycle
The motorcycle fit perfectly.  The customer was able to ride it in, set the kickstand, and have plenty of space to walk around it.  We made it a specific point to put the light switch and outlet next to the motorcycle so that he can plug in the trickle charger without having cords running across the floor. 
Motorcycle Barn
The Motorcycle Barn
All in all, this build made me want to build a barn-style shed myself.  There was so much room vertically.  Adding in the solar powered exterior light and high lumen shop light inside, this turned out to be a solid shed that filled the space perfectly.  

Check out this project video

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