We have alot of old pallet racks for sale at work. COuld a person use the verticle sections as posts and the supports as girts in a pole barn constuction. I am really needing a detached garage to park my cars in on the cheap. I would use regular plywood on top of that then siding to match the house.
Code inspection, Homeowners Association restricions, required building permits, or other government control for outbuildings?
Snow or wind load? ..if you can answer "no" to both of these, you might be OK. Do a search on "free barn plans", and you'll find a bunch of .edu websites with plans for barns, sheds, outbuildings, etc. including the trusses.
Personally, I'd be tempted to make the structure big enough so that I could use the rack shelving as rack shelving on either side and still get vehicles inside (dunno if you're planning 1 or 2 car, etc.). It'd be wicked easy at that point to add benches, etc. Since the posts are likely set up for it, I'd either do a slab-and-sill, or at least sonotubes, with J-bolts to mount the posts.
If you can get it cheap and get/avoid permission, it sounds like it'd make an excellent garage... --Glenn Lyford
It could work... Problem being that an average pallet rack is 8' wide and that's real tight for a garage. If you can get longer cross-beams, and get 10' to 12' wide, then you can park the car and get out, and have room to store other stuff out of the weather. Two sets side by side gets you a two-car garage.
If you can't afford a full slab, at least dig holes and put concrete footers under the legs. You don't want it sinking in the mud, or rusting too fast, or blowing away in the next stiff (70-MPH) breeze.
And it's a lot easier to get a straight and plumb structure when the foundation is straight and level.
Don't screw them up too much, and they could even be used as pallet racks again. Bolt 2X4's to the racks, then nail or screw the siding or roof decking to the 2X4.
Much depends on what the ends are like. My pallet rack collection is
3" channel with perforated bars welded onto the ends to bolt them to the columns. The bars are wider than the channel and don't fit well together. I planned to bolt the sections end-to-end for sawmill track but getting them flush, smooth and straight was too much effort, so I sawed the end bars off and used them as lengthwise splices.
There is an 8' wide vehicle shed near here. The doors are hinged to the side walls to maximize the opening, which makes that end unsteady, and wind & snow loads have ripped the hinges off the doors. If you welded the 4 corners it might be stiff enough, maybe. Upper corner braces would help.
Unless you are in love with a lot of extra work and effort get a part time job for a while and pay for whatever you want. A nice metal building is not that much. A concrete slab is a bundle but well worth it. An added benefit is that a big enough building will allow you to keep things to yourself. And if cold weather or hot weather is a problem insulate well.