gambriel style roofing

I'm going to be buying some property this week and one of the things that might work out well for this is a gambriel barn style home.
I've seen some photos of interiors and kind of understand what all is going on in the building.
What I do not yet understand is, what is required for the cross beam supports.
Given the home will be 30x60 with a 20ft peak, what would I need for a minimum cross beam? The photos I've seen all show some mighty damn big timber.
Just an idea I'm tossin' around.
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I have built many Gambrel Style roofs. One that I remember well was an Oregon Barn Plan. It was easy to understand and build. It was a large 2 story building with large 2 garage parking places downstairs, and a large workshop.....Upstairs was a full house plan with bathroom, kitchen, and bedrooms. The only beams used were in the first floor ceiling to support the 2nd story. These were 4x12 resting on posts running the length of the structure. The upstairs was a series of trusses "hand built" to a pattern laid out on the floor. After the trusses were built, they were stood up, braced, and plwood installed on the roof. The design can be modified and or made larger or smaller also. The one problem is with windows upstairs, and with a gambrel style sloping roof sides, one had to build "dormers" at the bathroom area, and stairwell. Description of this is difficult, and a plan and drawing would be easier. The outside of the entire barn had a shed roof on the length of the building both sides which greatly increased the overall footprint. jloomisconstruction.com

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On Sat, 23 Apr 2011 08:20:30 -0700, jloomis wrote:

Sounds like you're the man I should do business with. Can you give me some kind of ballpark figure on what it would cost for a 4x12x30ft beam?
What about using the newer style method they use like in flooring support these days. A pair of 2x4's with an OSB board between them? Personally, I'd prefer 2x6's.
My idea for a home is a 30x60 20 feet high deal. Since the property is kind of narrow, the 30 foot side would be facing the street (east). Then the south side would have a nice big deck on it. The main living area in front would be open to the roof.
As for the support, I'd prefer going with 12" centers rather than the normal 16".
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Not really. You have to remember that a beam that size is special order. And also, in 30 ft. it may also be larger than12. You really have to figure in what you are supporting, and how many supports are being placed under the beam. If it was no support, the 30 ft. length is a real special order glu lam..... Many ways to skin a chicken. You have to first decide how big, and what kind of structure is downstairs so that some of the walls down stairs can act as bearing support walls. Sure a person can use micro-lams and again, you have to decide about the footprint of the building. Many ideas being tossed around, and hard to put a figure on any one of these until a floor plan is made, upstairs and downstairs, and doors and windows are figured in, You also have to figure in shear wall for the structure as to adequately brace it. john

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