Frequently Asked Questions

Technically, nothing. But the name is based in our history. Our company started out as Farm Builders Incorporated. As our business grew and branched out to serve a wide variety of markets, having such an ag-specific name no longer made sense. Customers had already taken to shortening our name to FBI, so that seemed to be the easiest transition. In 1986, we officially became known as FBi Buildings, Inc.

Our business was founded in 1958 by Edwin A. Bahler

Our company was founded by Edwin A. Bahler and is still owned by the Bahler family. Ed L. Bahler, son of Edwin, is CEO.

Primarily Indiana and Illinois, with the exception of southern counties. We have crews and salespeople located throughout that territory. For large beef barnprojects, we serve the entire Midwest, including Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, South Dakota and Kansas.

Remington is a small town in Indiana located halfway between Chicago and Indianapolis just off Interstate 65.

Absolutely! We’d love to have you. If possible, call ahead so we can make arrangements. However, walk-ins are welcome, too.

Call us and let’s talk. In order to provide an accurate price, we’ll need to ask you some questions about building size, style and use.

That depends. We avoid gimmicky sales techniques. Instead, we prefer to price our buildings fairly and in a way that reflects the realities of each project. That means projects that have “ready sites” or are timed to perfectly fill a void in our project schedule (like in the winter) may get extra-special pricing.

There are two things that construction companies prize: schedule flexibility and site preparation done right and done early. In general, sites that drain well that allow our crews to keep working even after severe weather. Depending on the exact circumstance, these can qualify you for preferred pricing.

If you are computer-savvy, we recommend using the FBiPlanner. This online tool lets you draw your building floor plan and populate it with scaled icons of dozens of common items: vehicles, farm equipment and shop items. Our Project Sales Consultants can also give you advice on sizes.

Yes and no. Many people still refer to post-frame buildings as pole barns, but only inferior builders still actually use round poles. (FBi was the first in the industry to begin using square posts. Most other builders eventually followed.) So, yes, we build “pole barns,” but know that the “poles” are now actually precisely engineered laminated wood columns or concrete Perma-Column systems.

Just about anything is possible: brick, stone, EIFS, cedar siding, etc. Shingles can be used on the roof.

FBi’s specialty is designing and building the pre-engineered shell. If general contracting services are required, we have a network of general contracting companies we can work with to provide you a turnkey project.

Post-frame has many advantages – speed, flexibility, energy-efficiency and economy.

Yes, and you’ll find our prices very competitive with big-box home-improvement stores. However, pole-barn construction can be a lot harder than it looks. Let us explain the benefits of having FBi do the construction before you make a final decision.

Yes. We are the only post-frame company that has a separate division that specializes in this kind of work. We work on all buildings, no matter who built it.

We have 16 standard colors available. There’s sure to be a combination that would look just perfect on your building. Experiment with our colors today using our FBiColorSelector.

When it comes to steel, thicker doesn’t necessarily mean stronger. Steel strength is a combination of gauge (thickness), yield strength (hardness) and rib height and spacing. FBi uses full-hard, high-yield strength steel with a close rib spacing of 9 inches. Our steel is .0018″ thinner than the 26-gauge soft steel some other builders use, but it has almost twice the yield strength. When you consider all the steel-strength factors, our panels provide the greatest structural integrity.

Almost any builder’s door will work well when it’s new. The true test is after you’ve been in your building a couple years. FBi’s EasyMotion sliding doors slide smoothly and operate easily — now and years from now. There is no metal-on-metal or metal-on-wood friction to create drag when opening. All key contact points are lubricated with ultra-slick polymers. Our door track system is designed to work in all types of weather and does not allow for bird nesting. Our aluminum frame is strong yet lightweight. Last, but not least, our trims are color-matched, extruded aluminum that won’t oil-can or dent like the commonly used folded steel trims.

No, but we can refer you to concrete contractors who have experience working with our buildings.

No, but many times we facilitate building location, stake the building out, shoot grades and elevations, and collaborate with excavators to help ensure the building and the site work well together. We can refer you to civil engineers and excavators who have experience working with our buildings.

Some post-frame companies offer pre-engineered packages or models. That’s not our approach. Every building we sell has been engineered to your specific requirements for wind load, snow load, etc. based upon your exposure rating, building use and any applicable codes. In short, we don’t sell cookie-cutter buildings. Now, to be precisely accurate, certain components of our buildings have been pre-engineered, but the overall structure is not.

FBi does not have “models” per se. Every building is designed to your project requirements. However, choosing a length that is in 8′ increments and a width that is in 6′ increments will get you the most economical price.

For basic buildings, you’ll work with your FBi Project Sales Consultant, who has extensive, real-world experience helping customers plan their buildings for optimum flow, function, aesthetics and value. If your project needs additional design finesse, it will be sent to a designer in our corporate office. This takes care of the vast majority of our customers. In certain cases, an architect may be needed. For instance, complex, custom designs that are used by the public may benefit from an architect’s skill. However, it is important to contact us before you talk to an outside architect to ensure that your building is designed to affordably accommodate post-frame construction.

According to one university professor who researched various building types, “post-frame buildings are as green as it gets.”

Steel-frame buildings are a good fit when you need extremely wide (well more than 100′) clear-span interiors, such as in a large manufacturing facility. Wood trusses max out at about 100′. For metal buildings less than 100’ wide, a wood post-frame is generally a better choice for the following reasons:

Design Flexibility

It is much easier, and thus less expensive, to get higher-pitched roofs, interesting roof lines, overhangs, dormers, offsets, etc. on wood-frame buildings than steel-frame. That’s why it is so common to see steel buildings with extremely low-pitch roofs and no overhangs.

Energy Efficiency

Post-frame buildings are easier to insulate and don’t suffer from the extreme thermal bridging of steel-frame buildings. Learn more about the energy-efficient attributes of post-frame, steel-frame and block.

Savings

Lumber is nearly always less expensive than manufactured steel beams, sometimes substantially so. The lower material costs in a post-frame building translate into savings for you.