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Every farming operation has assets that need protecting.




Safe, secure and effective storage of hay is critical to preserving its quality. The degradation that occurs from exposure to weather elements such as high winds, rain and extreme sunlight causes hay to lose its nutrition value and quality. Poor quality hay doesn’t provide the necessary nutrition required for productive livestock health and growth. The amount of market value that can be lost due to poor storage is truly staggering, particularly if the hay grown, baled, and processed is of export quality.

Whilst lower cost option alternatives to quality steel hay sheds are available, they are a short term and unreliable option. AUSPAN’s proven steel hay sheds provide a long-lasting solution to protect and maintain the quality of your hay all year round, no matter the severity of the weather elements.

There are a number of different configuration options you may consider for a hay storage shed when designing - with some designs only requiring a roof and 1 or 2 walls on the strongest prevailing weather (wind, rain etc) sides. If you are needing to store high-quality hay, where total protection is required, then you might opt for an ‘open front’ style shed - where 3 sides of the shed are walled off, with just one open front side that faces the most naturally protected direction - allowing access for loaders, trucks, and telehandlers to load and unload the shed with the hay being stored.

The other factor to consider is a fire risk, considering that hay is combustible and this process needs to be monitored and managed to ensure the risk of serious fire break out is mitigated and controlled. Extra-wide openings on the ‘access’ side of a hay shed are also often favoured - with the introduction of ‘clear span’ beam portals to reduce the number of vertical columns required to support the roof of the shed, meaning fewer obstructions. 

Our team of hay shed experts at AUSPAN first seek to understand your unique situation, future plans and requirements. Then we will help you design and build the perfect hay shed, offering the best value for your investment.



More farmers in today's growing industry are electing to store their grain produce and sell it when the market conditions are more favourable, rather than delivering it all as it is harvested directly to the Co-operative Bulk Handling (CBH) facilities. This allows the farmer to sell the products at better prices. Another reason for on-farm storage is mixed farming operations, where livestock is part of the programme. Keeping your grain in the best condition possible is the single most important thing to prioritise. Proper storage not only helps your grain stay free from mould, mildew and disease, but also protects it from external factors such as rain and extreme heat. Loss and spoilage of grain can directly affect your bottom line and ultimately your profit.

Although liquid fertiliser is being more widely used in farming today, the agricultural industry continues to see a wide range of granule fertiliser used throughout cropping programmes. The window of time that these products are used is generally the sowing season, but it is still very important that it is stored correctly and in a way that it is protected from weather elements. Granule fertiliser needs to be stored in a cool and dry environment. If not stored correctly, the performance can be heavily affected by environmental factors such as light, heat, and rain. A proper storage solution is critical to maintain the product’s performance and maximise the results that the fertiliser contributes to the crop growing process.

There are different ways and options that grain and fertiliser storage sheds can be designed and built, and it all depends on what the farmers’ goals are. Often these types of sheds will mostly be built with concrete walls around the perimeter (to a height of 1-2mtr), which allows the filling of the shed to hold a lot more capacity than standard tin cladding to the ground. The concrete walls act as ‘bunkers’ and can be essentially filled up to the height of the wall.

There are usually a couple of different ways the height of the grain/fertiliser storage shed is considered in the shed’s design. One is a ‘sliding roof’ concept which allows the whole storage shed roof to slide backwards - covering the concrete bunkers so that a semi end tipper driver can tip to unload the product in the bunkers, without the overhead roof preventing it doing so. Another option is that the height of the shed is built to accommodate the height of a tipping semi-trailer, so that it is unobstructed to unload. Other options are to load grain and fertiliser storage sheds with a low angle auger or conveyor belt elevator - which is able to reach far enough into the shed to fill it to the capacity, and the truck is able to unload into the auger or conveyor from outside the shed.

AUSPAN can provide grain and fertiliser storage sheds in a wide range of sizes and designs to address your storage needs. We understand the critical role that successful storage of produce and fertiliser plays in the profitability and efficiency of a farming business, and we strive to deliver a solution that brings you the benefit, value, and productivity to your operations for years to come.



Agricultural machinery and implements such as tractors, air seeding equipment, harvesters and sprayers usually make up a big proportion of investment capital in most farming operations, and they need to be kept in good condition to ensure they perform as they are designed. The cycle of growing involves time-driven programmes of planting and harvesting .

A major factor in well maintaining equipment is the adequate storage of machinery to provide protection from the harsh conditions. When the seeding or harvest season is over, successful farmers then put their machinery through a process of cleaning, servicing, greasing, replacing any worn parts, refuelling and then storing away securely until required again. Although it may seem a hard task to steal a large harvester or tractor, theft and vandalism on farms are a significant problem, so a safe and secure machinery shed also gives you peace of mind that your gear is protected.

AUSPAN understands the larger machinery used on today's farms and how it can most effectively be stored in a well-designed and planned build for your own operation.



Healthy cattle can survive regular weather conditions if provided with adequate feed and water. A shelter, however, helps your cattle better cope with climatic extremes in weather and temperature conditions that occur throughout the year, contributing to an increase in their productivity and reducing production losses. Cattle shelters provide clean, dry, and comfortable environments for cattle while also protecting them from the extreme summer heat, severe storms and disease.

Well designed cattle shelters are effective in facilitating various cattle processing tasks such as vaccinating, dehorning, and weighing that need to be done as part of a livestock growing programme when receiving new cattle onto the property or before sending them to market. The shelter can also be a big advantage in dealing with sick or infected animals when needing to treat and/or isolate them from the main herd. Renowned global studies show that cattle that have access to good shelter have improved growth rate, productivity, and lower mortality rates.

Having worked with many of Australia’s leading cattle operation enterprises including pastoralists, stations, and feedlots - along with experience in the construction of buildings designed for improving the welfare and health of animals, AUSPAN is well aware of the best designs and materials that create a premium cattle shelter and help run your daily operations effectively.



Apart from efficiently managing the whole shearing process, shearing sheds play a vital role in housing the necessary shearing equipment as well as making sure that shearers are able to work with shearing clean and dry sheep even when weather conditions are unfavorable.

The design of shearing sheds can highly influence the efficiency of sheep-work and the health and safety of both the sheep and people involved in the shearing programme. Well-planned quality shearing sheds can ensure improved efficiencies, reduction in costs of wool harvesting, and improved operator safety. It also ensures that animal welfare standards are met.

Partially because of the insulation properties of wool, sheep can better adapt to ambient conditions than other domestic animals. Shearing, as an annual activity, is considered as a necessary practice, not only for wool production but also for hygienic reasons. Sheep that haven't been shorn before or haven't had prior interaction with humans often find the shearing process to be an unsettling experience. So smart design and management of the overall shearing shed infrastructure, beginning from shed entry ramp to sheep penning area, shearing area, wool processing and storage area can make a big difference in the successful operation of the whole process.

Shearing can be a chaotic process, and if it isn't managed well, animals will become stressed and shearing teams will be frustrated which will lead to declining productivity. It's very important to build a shearing shed that can help keep things in order and manage the workflow efficiently. A well designed and built shearing shed is the investment of a lifetime. AUSPAN has the expertise and experience of decades to deliver you a shearing shed which not only helps better manage your shearing process, but also lasts for generations to come. We consult, advise, and customize your shearing shed and supporting infrastructure to what you need and will guarantee on-time delivery within the agreed budget.



Building different sheds for each particular storage purpose on your farm is expensive and unnecessary. For example: investing in a fertilizer shed to store fertilizer that only remains on your farm for a couple of months for the seeding period will mean your shed isn't being utilized for the rest of the season. AUSPAN introduces the concept of multipurpose sheds to solve these issues.

By designing your new shed to be multipurpose, it can be built with different areas of the layout, serving multiple purposes. A fully enclosed machinery storage shed could also have a workshop section at one end so that maintenance and servicing of machinery can also be done in the same shed. A fully enclosed machinery shed may also include a cantilevered roof on the access side to provide shade and shelter when machinery is maintained outside. Multipurpose sheds can reduce the time spent on logistics and handling processes with everything being located in the same shed building location for better access.

As multipurpose sheds are able to handle a wider variety of your different farming needs, they can be fully utilized more efficiently throughout the entire season rather than being dedicated to a single specific use. AUSPAN has been able to effectively work with farmers to identify these specific needs of their own operation to help design and construct multi-purpose sheds, that have and will continue to serve them for years to come. Having everything under one roof can have functional advantages and can be - most importantly - more efficient and cost-effective.

AUSPAN’s multipurpose sheds are essentially the bringing together of all the great benefits of each type of shed used in the farming industry into a single premium steel shed building and the concept has proven very popular in today’s farming community. From hay sheds, shearing sheds, lean-to sheds, grain & fertilizer sheds to machinery and workshop sheds whatever your operation requires to run effectively, the experts at AUSPAN can assist with a piece of advice and recommendations on how these shed types can all be bought together into a single package that suits your own farm’s needs if a multipurpose shed is the right thing for you.



AUSPAN has proudly partnered with ENTEGRA SIGNATURE STRUCTURES to become the exclusive distributors in Western Australia for the unique “Ridgeback™” feedlot sheds. The patented concave curved roof design of the Ridgeback™ is self-ventilating and increases air exchanges compared to traditional barns.

We understand that your operational Yield and Return-on-investment (ROI) is a key consideration for you. The Ridgeback™ feedlot shed design is the best available and is backed up with a comprehensive suit of local support services. All design, engineering, manufacturing, site installation and project management is provided in house to ensure streamlined project completion.

As a specialist distributor of Ridgeback™ feedlot & dairy sheds, we are truly committed to delivering you the best value on your project with our innovative approach to construction and guaranteed quality. We take the time to listen to what you need, and then design a practical building to suit your needs.

More About Ridgeback™ Feedlot & Dairy Sheds

Why Do I Need A Shed For My Farm?

A well-built shed is crucial in the farming business for an effective long term operation. Quality sheds not only protect your valuable assets (machinery, trucks, livestock, grain & produce, fertiliser etc) from harsh environmental conditions, but also shield against wild and unpredictable weather.



Purpose-built farm sheds also assist you to run your daily operations in the most cost-effective and efficient manner, meaning your enterprise is able to continue working even when outside weather conditions aren’t favorable. Partnering with the right shed company that fully understands your specific requirements is the single most important thing you need to consider when looking to invest in a new steel farm shed building.

Having worked with Western Australia’s farmers for many years in building tough and strong sheds that can withstand harsh WA’s climate challenges, AUSPAN has established itself as the leading steel farm sheds builder of the region.


Finding the ideal farm shed that suits your requirements is likely going to be a large investment, and a significant purchasing decision. It is important that you are fully educated and understand all aspects of the process and options available to you before entering into a commitment. 

It is critical that you understand the following points in the consideration phase of your project:.


The layout configuration (bay spacings, clearspan openings, door widths etc) which can better suit the accommodation and movement of your machinery and equipment.


Types of surface treatments on the steel portal structure used in the mainframe of the building. For example, if you intend to store fertiliser in your shed, it would be a wise idea to opt for increased corrosion protection.


This could be a consideration if part of your new shed is to be used for a maintenance workshop, keeping the inside cooler in hotter temperatures. 


What type of doors do you require on your farm shed? It will depend on the shed’s purpose - full-height sliding doors are the most often used for fully enclosed machinery sheds. You may want to consider a roller door or a personal access door for a workshop shed.


Are standard gutters suitable for your shed stormwater management or do you need to option tapered gutters so that you can direct your rainwater to one end of your shed, leading to a storage tank system?


Do you require ventilation in your new shed? A handy ridge vent can be incorporated into a workshop section to encourage cooler and fresh conditions in enclosed areas.


Colorbond or zincalume finish are options to consider. Often farm shed buildings close to housing or nearby towns may be optioned with colorbond to suit surroundings better. If the shed is in a more isolated area, then cheaper zincalume cladding is most often used. Skylights can add a great benefit with natural lighting if needed inside a shed. Keep in mind that skylights bring increased heat transfer though.

It is important to remember that your new farm shed is a long term investment and to get lifelong value and return from it, you need to understand that the cheapest option isn't necessarily the best one for you.

Choosing a premium, durable, and well-designed farm shed structure that is configured and equipped for your needs is important. With the right options for your farming enterprise, your shed will serve you and future generations, while making your operational activities easier and more efficient on a daily basis. This process is made easy with the technical support and experience of a reliable and trusted shed building partner. AUSPAN has a proven track record of helping other farmers just like you to achieve this outcome.



Structural engineering is accountable for understanding, evaluating, and calculating the strength, stability, and rigidity of structures in order to make them impregnable. All construction projects should incorporate principles of structural engineering in order for the structure to keep performing for as long as it is intended, bearing its own and operational load, and withstanding external conditions that will be placed onto it.

Correct engineering is crucial for the long term performance of your steel farm shed because it directly impacts its safety and durability. A thorough analysis of the principles of structural engineering beforehand plays a vital role in making sure that your structure meets all necessary building and design codes. It also identifies important functional abilities of the structure such as the load it can bear and the wind velocity it can withstand.

Different technical aspects can arise while planning to build your shed. For example, choosing between an I-Beam or Sectional Tube column design or I-Beam and Web truss portals can be confusing if you aren’t familiar with how farm sheds are built. A good building partner will ensure you are educated on these details and help you get the best value from your shed investment.


Before building a farm shed structure, the environment and location where it is to be installed, along with the possible conditions in which it could be subjected to, must be carefully considered. Soil types for secure footings must be analysed to ensure adequate concrete is used, site wind conditions must be considered for the shed’s wind load ratings, and proximity to coastlines must be determined to ensure the correct materials are used for corrosion protection (ocean spray) and rated fixings (cyclonic areas). These are just some of the elements that need considered to ensure the design of your shed structure is correct. An ingenious farm shed design will ensure your investment is solid, stable and operational in the long term. A steel shed building that incorporates full structural engineering in its design is the only way to avoid the risk of the building collapsing under its own weight or environmental challenges it is placed under.

Parts of Western Australia’s coastal regions often face severe cyclonic activity. An expert design with the correct material and engineering will ensure that your farm shed performs safely in the future. 


Pre-engineered building refers to a design based on general information, without specific knowledge about the project. Such structures, although being time effective and cheaper upfront, may not exactly satisfy every single aspect of your project. Even small mistakes could lead to costly repairs and modifications in the future, not to mention the compromised safety aspect that could occur.

It is strongly recommended that you opt for a structural design that is planned specifically for your farm shed project and is approved by a certified engineer. A certified engineer considers the exact location where your shed will be installed, then calculates and plans according to the applicable wind region and the project’s terrain.

Accessibility And Features

It will depend on your own farming setup as to exactly what type of shed/s your operation will require. While planning to build your shed, you need to be clear on your objective outcomes that you are seeking to achieve, so you can communicate them to your building partner prior to starting the planning and layout.


While doors play an important role in effectively accessing your shed, their design and technical aspects are often overlooked.

Sliding doors are considered to be cost-effective and highly advantageous in comparison to vertical roller doors because of the minimal space they use, less time-consuming installation, and cost-efficiency. Sliding doors also do not require overhead space during their function.


While building your farm shed, considering stormwater management is also an important factor. Tapered gutters can assist with improved stormwater management by allowing you with the ability to direct all rainwater runoff, for better erosion control. Most farm sheds today have large roof catchment surface areas and the amount of water that can be harvested can be truly surprising, which in turn can then be used for on-farm activities such as livestock watering, ag spraying for weed control and fertiliser application.


Proper ventilation in your farm sheds can make a big difference to the working conditions and health of your employees and livestock. Condensation in your shed during the winter can lead to dampness, mould build-up, and low energy efficiency. On the contrary, heat caused by direct sunlight on your roof can cause unbearable working conditions and destruction of sensitive stock.

A shed that is used for livestock production such as feedlots, piggeries and poultry growing needs to be facilitated with adequate airflow to avoid health issues in housed animals, such as pneumonia and nasal discharge. As most harmful viruses and bacteria are airborne, ensuring airflow in the sheds will help move them away from animals, along with other harmful gases.

Quotation Considerations

To build a perfect shed, we all want to partner with the right construction company that delivers the structure on time and at the best price possible. So you ask for quotations from different companies, compare them and choose the best among many. However, most quotations may not include everything that actually needs to be accounted for. So scrutinising important factors before considering a quotation is highly recommended.


Premium quality steel materials are a critical component of building a good quality shed. Ensuring you are getting quality steel materials (for both the structure and the cladding) to suit your shed’s location (coastal or inland) and operational requirements is important. There can often be a lot of confusion around the terms of steel quality, thickness, grade etc.

Chemical composition of steel is extremely important for it to be graded and set aside for intended use. Most national standards for structural steel refer to the term ‘Strength of the steel’, but its interpretation can vary. Yield strength (YS) refers to the value of applied stress at which permanent deformation occurs, Ultimate tensile strength (UTS) refers to the value of stress at which fracture occurs, and Notched fracture strength (NFS) refers to the stress at which fracture occurs in a body containing pre-existing cracks.

National standard of steel grade in Australia and New Zealand (AS/NZS 3678) is Grade 400 that refers to:

  • YS nominal 400 MPa
  • Plate 20-30mm: YS min 360 MPa, UTS min 480 MPa

National standards do not specify NFS (notched fractured strength) values that depend on size and sharpness of notch and can decrease when steel is brittle. Ductility & toughness tend to decrease when yield strength increases. So you need to be cautious with standards that only specify YS or UTS because they may permit steel that is brittle, which of course has low NFS. Steel hollow sections is another important component that contributes to building a steel structure such as your farm shed. These components have the most effective cross-section for resisting torsional moments and offer advantages with regard to corrosion protection. The selection of steel hollow sections can be governed by many factors such as involving a comparison of the pros and cons concerning mechanical properties, unit material costs and the costs of fabrication, erection and maintenance. The experiences of engineers and fabricators also affect the choice. It is therefore very important that those involved in structural steel construction should understand the behaviour of hollow sections and their connections.


Group 141-1

In relation to the roof and wall cladding thicknesses, the common terminology is BMT and TCT. BMT refers to the base metal thickness and TCT refers to total coated thickness. The thickness of the sheeting is mostly marketed as per TCT. For eg, sheeting marketed as .42 TCT is only .37 BMT.


The hidden cost component of any project is something that we all fear the most. You need to be vigilant and aware that you are comparing the same offer when reviewing quotations from shed suppliers. Depending on your particular project, items such as engineering, soil analysis, building permit applications, site preparation works, concrete, delivery, erection and even GST may or may not be included in the proposal being offered.

So firstly you need to be sure what items are applicable and secondly that they have allowed for in the price. These things that aren’t included (whilst may be argued aren’t exactly part of the ‘shed’ costs) can often still be required to be able to achieve the outcome of getting your shed built. They can make up a significant amount of the budget, and not having these items included in your proposal can fool you into thinking that it is a much more cost-effective option. That is until you have committed to the supplier, paid a deposit and then discovered you have further costs that you were previously unaware of.

You should also be aware of the proposed building site’s current condition (e.g.. soil types, presence of in-ground rock that will interfere with footings etc.) and what will be involved in preparing your site before the erection process begins. Considering the cost of excavation and clearing of the site is very important because poor quoting practices and misguided communication will ultimately result in budget blowouts.

To sum up, make sure you have the following included in all your quotation:

  • Engineering & soil analysis
  • Delivery and erection costs
  • Council building approvals
  • Concrete and pad preparation materials
  • GST
  • Site preparation costs


It is important for your business that your shed is delivered on time for your operations to continue running efficiently. Any good shed builder should provide you with a quote that clarifies the general timeline of the process and firm lead time for your project. Experienced shed building companies with proven results generally have a better capacity to take on new projects and get them delivered right and on time.

Wind Effect On Australian Sheds

To determine the effect of wind on your structure, you should examine three important factors that influence the ways in which wind flows through or inflicts damage. This way, you will be able to effectively choose the right material and understand the engineering requirement for your farm shed that is required for your location.


The average annual wind speed in Australia is reported to be 18 to 29 km/hr with frequent gusts of 80 km/hr, with occasional wind speeds of greater than 115 km/hr. Land or coastal gale-force winds that are usually 50 km/hr or stronger affect wider areas and last much longer than thunderstorms.

Extreme winds generally occur in winter and spring in the southern part of Australia. Whereas the strongest winds show up in summer and autumn in the tropical north, often due to tropical cyclones. Tropical cyclones produce gusts which may exceed the speed of 200 km/hr. These winds can cause sizable property damage, particularly to buildings and structures that haven't been designed to suit these conditions.

Australia Cyclone Map

The strength of category-five cyclones near the coast can produce wind gusts that travel up to 300 km/hr. Tropical cyclones that typically form over warm ocean waters to the north of the continent escalate before crossing the coast. Wind regions in Australia are classified into four groups: A, B, C & D, according to the speed of the wind and range from normal to severe. Regions of Western Australia experience severe tropical cyclones where special engineering and experienced qualified design is critical to when building steel sheds in these regions.


Terrain category is determined by the surrounding area of 500m from the structure. Structures built in open terrain are more likely to face greater wind damage than those built in urban areas, where obstructions like buildings and trees play a big role in minimising the speed and impact of wind.


The speeding effect of wind increases on an uphill slope downwind of a flat region caused by the shape and slope of undulating terrain. Hilly terrains greatly influence the passing wind flow, with both valleys and hill crests experiencing stronger wind speeds in comparison to flat terrain. The topographic effect is well recognised from damage surveys following different tropical cyclones. The surveys demonstrated that structures located on hillsides and hilltops are more susceptible to wind damage, compared to those located at lower elevations. It is, therefore, necessary to include the topography effect to identify possible wind damage to your structure.


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DO I Need A Permit To Build A Farm Shed In WA?

You may mistakenly believe that because your shed will be built on your own farm property that you don’t require any sort of building approval or permit from local shire and council authorities. Each state and territory has different approval requirements when it comes to building rural steel farm sheds.

There are different legislative controls that aid the development of land use activities - from the initial process of clearing the land to building the structure. Shire councils and local government authorities control and govern the use and development of land within their jurisdiction. Constructional and building activities carried out on your property fall within the definition of development for which you need to seek advice on any legislative application requirements from your Local Government Authority.

Clearing native vegetation to make way for a new farm shed building without a permit or an exemption from the Department Of Environment Regulation (DER) can be defined as an offence in Australia. Once you apply for such a permit, you may require a site visit from DER or other Government agencies who would decide whether to grant or refuse the permit, taking various impacts on environmental issues like biodiversity, land degradation etc. into account.

Fire prevention and control measures are also an important consideration if they will be impacted by the building of your new shed. It’s critical they are identified and undertaken because there are strict regulations regarding fire control all over Australia, which if not followed, may lead to penalties. Additionally, landholders also require the approval of the respective body if they wish to conduct building and construction activity (which includes rural sheds) which may affect emergency service access routes on or through their property.


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