Originally Posted by 5crazies
Thank you! Lots of good ideas here. I'll show this to my husband. He does all the construction and building. Not sure if he'd rather attempt modifying it or just start over from scratch. He's already put in so many hours over the last 3-4 months to get it to where it is now. It's a tough pill to swallow to know that it is not working.
well I think it will work and I honestly think with enough tweaking you can basically make anything work... all you are really lacking is a roof. if I was you I would go to the hardware store and buy a few panels of the 12' corrugated roof for about $13 a piece. take some lumber and attach to your run and go about 2' above the topper and build your roof and this will give you the shield from the sun you need as long as you overhang the roof about a foot or so on all sides. you could even take the shade cloth idea and cut strips and hang them on all four side of the roof and let them hang down to prevent the sun from even touch the topper. ALSO you could paint the roof white to reflect the sun verse absorb. the fun part about a roof too is you now have a nifty rain catch you can throw a cheap gutter on it and a cheap rain barrel and you have never ending water for your chickens.
Ventilation is easy go get a few of the vents from the hardware store probably around 3-4 of the 9.5" outdoor vents and cut a hole or two in the topper once you have the roof on and place those, and if you are smart you will get the closable kind so you can adjusts the vents.
during the heat of the summer you can adjuster the air flow by using the sliding window you have and back insert you can place with the back doors open and open all vents up top. OR you can cut 6" x 10" sections of the topper itself attach your 1/2 HW cloth to the hole and hinge the sections and you have adjustable airflow that way just like most standard built coops.
its true that a topper probably wasn't the easiest thing to make work, but hell I love a good challenge and I think your husband has done a great job so far!
However, if you wish to start over again you could easily keep the run intact and do exactly what I have stated about the roof and just make the extra space on top of the run a coop with boards as I would imagine the topper is about 2-3' tall and an extra 2' added to that would give you a on average 6' wide and 4 ' tall coop. but either way I think you will be good.
Edited by Daox13 - 12/16/16 at 8:28am