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S20 E8: Raising a Barn

The entire team comes together to help Mason Mark McCullough rebuild the chicken barn he lost to a fire. They reframe the barn, hook up new electrical wiring, connect a utility sink, and hang an exterior door.

Previous episode: S20 E7 | Next episode: Posting on November 29, 8am ET

In this episode:

We meet the entire team at mason Mark McCullough’s house. About a year ago, Mark’s chicken coop caught fire and burned to the ground. Knowing his chickens need a home to call their own, the team chips in to help build a new and improved chicken barn for Mark’s feathered friends. After discussing his chickens and their eggs, Mark and host Kevin O’Connor discuss the fire before getting to work with the crew.

In the backyard, general contractor Tom Silva is getting to work on the framing. After installing oversized pressure-treated lumber around the perimeter of the foundation, Tom explains how to layout framing for fast, efficient, and accurate work. He also explains how to build inside corners and the different types of studs in a wall. With the entire crew on hand to help, the team makes and lifts the walls into place to create the structure of the chicken barn.

Next, master electrician, Heath Eastman meets Mark at the chicken barn to discuss the electrical. Heath explains the components of wiring an outdoor structure, expressing the importance of water-tight connections and protection from the elements. After agreeing on the fixtures, the two get to work installing a panel, conduit, wiring, switches, and receptacles.

Knowing that running water inside the chicken barn could be a big help, plumbing and heating expert Richard Tretheway lends a hand. Since they already poured the concrete pad, Richard opts to install a utility sink with cold water that drains outside. After locating the water supply coming from the house, Richard explains that burying a dry well behind the shed is the best option. With Mark digging out the hole for the dry well’s catch basin, Richard ties into the house’s water supply and runs polyethylene pipe fitted with a vacuum breaker to the chicken barn.

With the plumbing in place, Richard assembles a utility sink kit. He also explains how to pipe a faucet when only running cold water. Then he and Mark work together to tie the sink into the dry well before testing out their work.

Finally, carpenters Nathan Gilbert and his father William lend a hand building the barn doors. In the rear of the barn, Nathan, William, and Mark install a sliding barn door. They install the hardware on the doors and barn after explaining how the brackets, rails, and rollers work. Before long, the sliding barn doors are hung, and the team turns its attention to the front doors.

With Tom and Kevin’s help, the crew comes up with a plan for hanging the door jambs on Mark’s stone door opening. After scribing the jambs to fit the uneven granite, the team drills holes in the stone and inserts a threaded rod to hold the jambs in place. With careful scribe work, the team cuts door casings for the top and sides of the opening. Then, after attaching hinges to the doors and hanging them in the opening, Mark calls his chicken barn complete.


How To Frame a Shed

General contractor Tom Silva shows host Kevin O’Connor and Mark McCullough how to frame walls while rebuilding Mark’s chicken coop.

Where to find it?

To frame the new barn, Tom and the rest of the team used a combination of 2x4” stock framing lumber for the studs and 2x6” stock framing lumber for the roof rafters. To secure the boards together, the team used a variety of framing nails with a nail gun. All of these items can be found at home centers and lumberyards.

C.R. O’Neill Company provided expert assistance with this segment in Lexington, MA.


How To Wire a Shed for Electricity

Master electrician Heath Eastman helps Mark McCullough wire his chicken barn for lights and power.


How To Install a Utility Sink in a Barn

Master plumber Richard Trethewey installs a utility sink in Mark McCullough’s chicken barn.

Where to find it?

Richard installed a Utilatub Combo 20x24” Thermoplastic Floor Mount Laundry Tub. The kit comes with the water supply and drain lines required to hook up to the water supply. The utility sink kit is manufactured by MUSTEE.

To connect the sink to Mark’s existing lines, Richard used a roll of polyethylene tubing and various fittings found at home centers and plumbing supply houses.

Due to the planned usage for the sink, Richard opted to use a dry well system rather than connect it to a drain line. He and Mark installed a 12x12” Drainage Catch Basin manufactured by NDS. Below and around the hole, Mark filled in with crushed stone found at home centers and landscape supply stores.


How to Build a Sliding Barn Door

Carpenter Nathan Gilbert enlists the help of his father to install sliding barn doors on Mark McCullough’s chicken barn.

Where to find it?

C.R. O’Neill Company and William C. Gilbert Carpentry provided expert assistance with this segment in Lexington, MA.

Original Air Date: Nov 18, 2021, Season 20; Ep. 8 23:42


Products and Services from this Episode

  • Expert assistance:
    C.R. O’Neill Company
    William C. Gilbert Carpentry
  • Utility sink kit manufacturer: MUSTEE
  • Drainage catch basin manufacturer: NDS