I was going with a concrete slab in my head, for several days. I thought that was “doing it right”. It would last forever, easily translate purpose to a garage or shop, and would be flat, level, and smooth.
That changed. The tipping point was thinking about doing yoga on a cold concrete floor.
The other option I was considering was throwing a bunch of pallets onto the leveled grade over a sheet of poly, and sheeting it, which had some merit. Easy. Cheap- the pallets were all readily available for the taking free from the garden supply. Recycled and “eco”. I just like pallets. The downsides were that it won’t last nearly as long as concrete, as it’s wood, it’s organic and will eventually rot, relying on the poly for a vapour barrier, and like a cluster of lilypads, they will only create as flat and level a floor as the packed dirt beneath is leveled.
An immense amount of shoveling and raking ensued, removing piles of earth from the dirt floor of the barn and scaling it off to reasonably flat and level. Then I rolled out the poly, and moved in the pallets, tacking them to each other, essentially creating a floating floor frame.
They worked so well! Thankfully, the first few went in perfectly solid and flat, because not all of them were so easy to settle in place, and that would have been a disillusioning start. Oh, so cool. I’m so excited that it’s working so well. It’s such a thrill and relief when something untried and suspect works out the best way that you hoped.