Is It Possible to Erect a Steel Building Yourself?

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Have you ever wondered if you can erect your own steel building? Is this a project that you can really do yourself?

You don’t have to wonder anymore. It is completely possible to erect a steel building yourself. Just ask Eric O. from Wabash, Indiana.

Eric had never assembled and erected a steel building before, but found that it wasn’t nearly as difficult as he first thought. “I had no big problems putting it together, all the pieces went together the way I saw in the [erection manual] and when I had questions, like on how to install the eaves, I called and was sent a sketch on how it was supposed to fit, no problem,” says Eric.

erect a steel building“I would work on the building in the evenings and on weekends,” says Eric. “It seemed like more of a hobby and less like work that way. It took me a few months, but I enjoyed doing all the work, myself.”

Eric’s story is just one of the many tales of people putting steel buildings up themselves. Sure, it took a few months, but he did it. Himself. You can imagine how he swelled with pride as he tightened the last fastener and gazed upon his 20-year dream in the making.

Pride isn’t the only reason do-it-yourselfers take on this pre-engineered challenge every day. I’m not sure I know anyone who isn’t in the business of saving a couple bucks here and there. Heck, we all are trying to save some cash when we can. When it comes to steel buildings, there are many ways to save. In fact, just by choosing to build with steel already saves you a bunch of money. Compared to other construction methods, steel is more cost-effective than wood or brick & mortar buildings, often times quoted at half the price. The savings add up when you start to add other factors.

When you first decided on a steel building, you noticed that you don’t usually need an architect to design the base building. Structural engineers at steel building suppliers eliminate the need for an architect, as well as the need for the extra expense. Since steel buildings are completely customizable, you can work with a project manager and engineer to pick out what your building will look like, and what function it will serve on your property.

Now, if you’re a red-blooded do-it-yourselfer, you can also save money on the erection process. If you decide to farm out the work to a professional, you’ll have to pay a construction crew to erect the building, along with a general contractor to manage your project. There is nothing wrong with hiring a crew and a general contractor, and it might be a necessary expense if you have an enormous steel building project.

erect a steel buildingSince you can erect your own building like Eric O., you’ll be happy to find out that you don’t need to do any field fabrication. All pieces – the rigid frames, wall and roof panels – are ready for erection. That’s what ‘pre-engineered’ means! All those pieces come with pre-punched holes and components are pre-cut and numbered to correspond perfectly to your construction drawings.

I’ve said it before; steel buildings are the grown-up versions of erector sets.

Now, honestly, how long does it take to erect a steel building? Since every steel building is different, it’s difficult to give you a definitive answer. I’ve heard of a 5-7 man crew complete a 40’x60’ workshop over a weekend. We’ve seen people erect their rigid frames in a few days, and then take their time on the wall panels and roof. Some projects take longer. It all depends on the amount of time you can put into your steel building project. One thing is for sure – erecting a steel building, even doing it yourself, is a heck of a lot faster than building a wood frame building.

It’s up to you. If your steel building project doesn’t require a ridiculous amount of customizing, it will be easy to erect, and the process will be rather quick. It’s the ultimate do-it-yourself project.

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