Round grain bin as Madison County’s budget prairie style home

Bob Quinn works radio, was raised by farmers and owns a small farm so it wasn't such a leap to convert a grain bin into his retirement . “Basically we wanted some living quarters. We looked at a log , but I wanted to have it so it looked like it was part of the farm.”

After reporting on the converted grain bin homes (dubbed “Safe T Homes”) that Iowa-based Sukup Manufacturing had sent to Haiti for earthquake victims, Quinn was sold on the idea. “They figured out how to put and windows in that grain bin and I decided, you know what, I'm going to do it on a bigger scale.”

Quinn ordered a 36--wide (20,000-bushel) grain bin to be delivered to his farm in . He and his wife, Ann, chose where to cut the doors and windows and where to lay the concrete foundation. After the grain bin workers had installed the concentric series of rings that make up the structure, the finished the job (with the help of plumbers, electricians and their son-in-law

With the exception of the doors and windows, from the outside, it looks like any other grain bin omnipresent on midwestern farms. On the inside, the couple chose not to erect walls and to leave it looking as if you'd stepped inside an empty bin. To provide space for insulation, they added a second roof and a second skin (made from corrugated roofing material). The interior is decorated true to the genre: the kitchen is a recycled farm kitchen; the bathroom is behind a sliding and the balcony railings are hog panels.


  1. Pretty neat, & those little 18′ diameter Sukup Safe T Homes at around USD 10,000 are interesting too. “Metal yurts”. 🙂

  2. In skyscraper condos, bare cement is considered luxurious. I can totally appreciate the the steel in this home as sort of art-deco style. The ending should have included a short tune played on that piano. Totally curious how it sounds like, at night, with the disco ball effect. Lol

  3. We had a homeless family living in a grain bin. As we were giving them donated food and clothing we got to know them. Eventually their circumstances made the local paper and they were moved to a house. But I was always enamored by the idea of converting a grain bin into a livable house.

  4. The Clinton stole 10s of million dollars from Haiti relief and had the gentleman who was going to testify in US court killed one week ago

  5. Ok props for trying something unconventional but this feels as cold and clinical as the inside of a state prison. No real view, metallic cold looking, echos, and concrete, no thanks.

  6. Kind of the opposite of a Tiny House. You could build this around a Tiny House… though I don’t know why you would want to.

  7. Those no-slip stairs can be as sharp as a cheese grater… no walkin’ barefoot up those! …Iowa, huh? I’m curious just how tornado resistant that structure is. I would have paid extra for a basement under that slab. Glad to hear that smaller ones hold up to hurricanes, but a big one like that?

  8. The idea in general is fantastic comparing to people are semi-homeless and spent thier money foe high rents
    This design could be better if increased the sunlight area enlarging the windows ….. could be less expenses for who think to build the same idea if they searched in the scrap

  9. This is so nice to see. This man is very knowledgeable and passionate about farming, so much so that he’s used all of these technologies and reinvented them into a place for him and his family to live in. Incredibly interesting technologies and systems. Thanks for sharing, this was very interesting.

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