Redpath Dairyshelter Frequently asked questions:
Redpath clear roofed Dairy housing can be used for Feedpad shelter, Loafing, or Wintering.
A Feedpad is used for short term covered feeding only and may often have a concrete floor, cow density may be as little as 4m2 per cow due to the limited standing time.
If you have an existing concrete feedpad and then install a soft floor barn near to this, the soft floor barn can often have its cow space reduced (typically 7 or 7.5 square meters per cow) as a portion of the effluent is managed by the concrete feed pad area.
Standoffshelters or Loafing barn are similar to a Feedpad shelter but are designed to hold cows for short duration of half days to full days. The loafing floor area will often be a soft system such as deep litter woodchip, and this may be combined with a concrete lane where the cows will stand and feed. Cow density in a Standoffshelter might be between 7.5 - 8.5 square meters per cow.
Wintering barns are used for holding cows for many weeks or months, and thus these will usually combine concrete standing areas where cows feed with a larger area of soft floor deep litter woodchip where cow density might be as low as 10m2+ per cow.
What flooring options do i have with a Redpath clear roofed Dairyshelter?
This is one of the strong points of the Redpath clear roofed system, you may choose a 100% contained effluent system using a concrete or Duraliner lined design. The next option (and most popular) is a deep litter woodchip style floor, for comfortable resting time (some of these will have the Redpath Duraliner Liner). and another option is to use a Limerock or similar material for the base floor which can then have effluent regularly scraped to a holding tank. In the past Redpath Shelters have been constructed over Herd home flooring systems also. A further option is to simply have a concrete base or build over an existing concrete pad. See more here
The clear roof allows a large range of flooring systems to be used, as the natural warming light that enters through the roof maintains improved floor and animal condition.
I have heard of 'Compost barns' also what are they?
A Compost barn is similar to a Winteringbarn in respect to cow density and design - however a Compost barn as the name suggests requires the deep litter flooring material to be kept ‘alive and composting. This often means regular stirring and adding ingredients to the deep litter to maintain the natural composting action. See more here
Why use soft litter?
The soft floor deep litter system is becoming quite popular with farmers who want to hold cows off the pasture for longer periods. Farmers often wish to avoid traditional hard surfaces such as gravel raceways, concrete floors or slatted floors which can have long term effects on the cow’s hoofs, legs and joints. Soft woodchip floors work very well with clear natural light roofing as the UV light keeps floor material dry and the environment warm for stock.
Soft deep litter floors allow the cows to loaf and lay down with improved comfort and cleanliness. See more here
Do I need to line the base of the shelter below the deep litter?
It depends on your particular site. If you have very free draining soils or a council standard exists where an underfloor or sealed liner is required, then yes.
Hydraulic pressure on a liner beneath the deep litter is minimal and often a clay compaction system is able to be used. The other alternative is to use the Redpath Duraliner barrier membrane which is supplied in a width to suit the loafing area spans of the structure.
We can include the liner material as part of the quote. See more here
How do I best manage effluent run-off?
Some underfloor drains will likely be needed to handle any run-off that finds its way through the litter system. These drains would normally lead to a small 1000 -2000 litre holding tank which would have a pump to send any liquids through to your effluent pond. As the Redpath roof protects the floor from the vast majority of rainfall there is very little run-off if any to deal with + the clear roofing is very effective at harnessing the suns energy to keep the floor dry. See more here
How much do they cost?
Cost varies a little and is dependent on the chosen features and overall size of the shelter being built. Typically though Redpath will deliver and construct a building on your property for less than $575-650+GST per cow. Over concrete pads this may reduce to as little as $350 + GST per cow. Other infrastructure such as drainage, feed paths/troughs, and site works are additional to the build cost. See more here
Where can I find a woodchip supply?
Fortunately woodchip availability is generally plentiful, - with local forestry and local wood-chipping services in many regions. Many farmers chip trees that they already have on farm, and some will plant trees for future use. Re-planting provides an excellent sustainable farming policy with a closed loop recycling system.
Some farmers are able to use products like recycled ply and recycled pallet products, bark as well. Local sources are sawmills or forestry contractors. Contact Redpath for your local regional woodchip supply contacts.
Typical costs are around $12.00 - $15.00 per square meter + GST at 500mm depth including delivery See more here
I have an existing concrete pad – can you cover that?
Yes definitely! This is becoming a popular option for farmers wanting to restrict rainfall runoff from their existing Feedpad. We can usually adjust our spans to fit between existing infrastructure troughs, gates and fences etc. The clear Durashelter roofing provides fantastic drying ability for concrete floored systems. The 12.2m span Redpath dairy housing design is a popular choice for this application See more here
Why use a clear roofing material like Durashelter?
The secret and strength of the Redpath Dairyshelter system is its clear roof! Redpath's heavy duty clear roofing lets the sun’s natural energy into the building to help keep the flooring dry and the cows in a warm comfortable environment.
Clear roofing exceeds white or variegated roofing (tin + polycarbonate) light transmission by as much as 50%! - giving a dramatic improvement in environmental conditions.
Letting the sunshine and natural UV in, the floor is kept cleaner and more bacteria free than any comparable shed system.
This feature is a very important factor in the success of the Redpath Shelter system. See more here
My site is really windy – will the clear Durashelter covering last?
Definitely, Redpath excel at building and installing high wind resistant structures with flexible cladding. Many of our buildings are located in the most extreme parts of the country (Southland, Wairarapa, Mount Taranaki, east Cape and the Far North)
Redpath offer the industries longest clear membrane warranty!
Our customers are constantly amazed at the durability and life of our covering. In fact we are so confident in it that not only do we say that it gives at least a 10 year service life, but “if it fails within the first 5 years, we’ll replace it for free”*. *Some conditions do apply See more here
How much does the covering cost?
The building design incorporates a fast release and re-clip aluminium roof holding system called Duralock making the roof cladding speedy and cost effective to replace.
The covering material and labour cost combined is often less than 15% of the value of the overall structure!
Redpath's designs also utilize a roof Isolation system – which allows small sections of the roof panelling to be replaced in case of a failure (rather than replacing an entire length roof membrane)
This gives our customers 'peace of mind' See more here
Can I use a different type of roofing such as iron?
Yes- if you would like to install a different type of cladding such as tin or polycarbonate after the first 10 years of the buildings life, then you can do that as the Redpath truss type building designs will accept hard cladding also. We just need to ask us to add some purlins and flashings at the time of the hard cladding being fitted and away you go!
What time of the year should I build?
Ideally Spring, Summer and in some areas Autumn is still OK- although you should allow at least 90 days to obtain the permit etc. before the builders start, so planning well ahead is a good idea. Redpath will often only request a 5% deposit / booking to start the paperwork (engineering, site plan, council submission work etc.) which makes the process a lot simpler & cost effective. Redpath take bookings throughout winter/spring for summertime and autumn build times on site.
Quotes are free of course - and are usually submitted within 48 hours of asking. See more here
Do I need a building permit?
Yes, normally you do and sometimes resource consent may be required also.
Typically Redpath will apply for the building permit as part of our building service making it a relatively fuss free process.
We will handle the submission process including plans, site plans, engineering etc. This service is included in our quotation unless specifically stated.
Who applies for the building permit & what does it cost?
If we are supplying a constructed price Redpath would usually apply for the building permit and submit the site plan for the building to your local council. There are some fees that the council will charge for the permit and possibly for resource consent also and these will be on-charged to you at cost price. Costs for permits do vary from council to council – however the building permit is typically not more than 3-4% of the value of the building. Allow 5-7 weeks to obtain an approved building permit.
Does my local council support this type of building?
In our experience local councils are very supportive of the Redpath shelter system; we have built 100s of them nationwide. The shelter places you in control of the effluent on the intensively operated feedpad or standing area and eliminates uncontrolled washing of the effluent from rainfall into the wastewater systems / drains / creeks - and councils see this as a real benefit.
How long do they take to erect?
Not very long at all, a 350 cow Dairyshelter might take 20 working days overall on site, whilst a 500 cow unit might take 25-30 days. During winter the weather can play a part in delaying construction of course - So our recommendation is Plan ahead!
Can I build the structure myself?
Yes; with Redpath you are not obligated to use our dedicated building teams, you can purchase a steel kitset and erect it yourself. The buildings use an "all bolted" construction making them straightforward to assemble and of course strong! You may wish to ask Redpath to install the specialist Durashelter roof cladding, and we offer this partial construction service for your convenience.
What extras do I need to allow for?
You will need to allow for some site preparation of the pad (scraping the site) ready for the building, some drainage + pipes, rock/clay base materials and the deep litter materials (woodchip) if a soft floor is to be used. There may be gates, water & feed troughs, and possibly some other infrastructure such as races or concrete pads needed at access points for laying feed near to the building also. See more here
What size can the Redpath Dairyshelter be constructed to?
A typical Redpath Dairyshelter length is anywhere between 30 and 120m in length, there is no real limit. The width could be just one single span of 6m, 8m, 9.6m, 10.65, or 11.2m. Specialist wider designs may also be available but are region specific.
Any of the above spans may be inter-connected to make up a multi span design. Example: 9.6+9.6 = 19.2m, or 10.65m + 6m + 10.65m = 27.3m, etc.
There is no limit as to how large the structures can be built and we have regularly erected buildings in excess of 1 hectare. Roof ventilation would normally be introduced in the designs if the buildings are very large of course. See more here
What type of ventilation or shading system do Redpath offer for using the shelter in summertime?
The 'A' frame truss Redpath designs can have roof ventilation fitted for the full length and these offer excellent control of the Dairy shelters internal temperature and humidity. The roof ventilation is rack & pinion driven and can be operated either manually or be fully automated. Contact us for pricing.
It’s also very simple to fit a shade screen as part of the initial build or as an optional extra after construction. The cost is minimal, typically no more than $12 - $14 + GST per square meter to install a simple and popular manually pulled wire and cloth system. Fully automatic shade / thermal screens are also an option. See more here
Can I visit a building near to me?
Yes, it is quite likely that there will be a Redpath Dairy house shelter near to your location as many have been built over the past 10 years throughout New Zealand and Australia - Send us an enquiry to see a building near to you Enquire here
How much overhead clearance is there in the buildings for tractor access?
Redpath's unique 'A' frame design truss eliminates overhead clutter or any horizontal chords. It allows quite large machinery to be operated within the structure and also eliminates bird perching and nesting points. Our open plan roof truss and tall sidewall height options 3m,3.5m,4m and 4.5m allows you to tip litter off the trucks or enter the structure to pick up a downed cow etc.
Can i access the building to pick up downed cows etc.?
Yes of course, this is a key feature of Redpaths designs. You are not limited like in other systems with specialist and fragile flooring systems where heavy machinery cannot enter the shelter. With a Redpath shelter you have full "drive thru" access"
My site has peaty or soft soils – can you construct on this?
Yes, but often we will design a 'site-specific' footing design for the pole foundation and this may require more concrete and labour than a standard footing design. See more here
Are there any milk supplier regulations I need to consider?
There are some distance limitations to consider when locating your feed or Dairyshelter to the milk shed, discuss these with your supplier or Redpath.
Will the effluent rust the Redpath Dairyshelter posts?
Redpath pay special attention to protecting the poles of the structure that are exposed to effluent. We use heavy galvanizing combined with rubberized sleeves over the pole to avoid effluent contact and provide superior durability. See more here
What other uses can the Redpath shelter be used for?
Often we see farmers using the Redpath Standoffshelter for calving, calf rearing, implement shedding, etc. See more here
How do I feed-out in my shelter?
Typically you would feed out along the sidewalls, although it is becoming popular to supply the buildings with a central ‘service lane’ so that you can drive through the centre of the building and drop feed under cover and out of the rain. See pictures on this page for feeding out methods See more here
How do you handle storm-water runoff?
All Redpath shelters are fitted with gutters along all internal pole lines and external pole line. The rainwater is collected by a dedicated 100% non-corrosive rain head and then you can connect to that with down pipes & drain flow pipe. See more here
Is the building supplied with a warranty?
Yes - We offer a warranty for the framework and we design to a 25 year return period (like a normal farm shed), we also have a warranty for the roofing.
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