A Coop Story
Construction began in June, 2008 and took 4 months to complete. That's right - all summer, baby. Neither my husband or I had ever built anything before. But hey, no one died, we're still married and I am happy with the results.CityChook's Coop Details
Landscape block (9x16) over an existing cement paver pad. Floor is green treated lumber topped with 3/4 inch plywood.Foundation:
6x8, 9 ft. tall Size:
1 people door (78x30), 1 chicken door (15x15), 1 large nest box (16x23), 6 ft. roost, antique mason jar feeder and waterer, roof ridge cap and soffit ventilation, Tyvec weatherproofing paper, T1-11 siding sealed with weatherproofing stain, 2 double pane double hung windows, beadboard, interior surfaces finished with oil-base primer and exterior latex, gabled roof with asphalt shingles, granite front step, antique brick paver entry, landscaping, electricity and fiberglass R17 insulation. Features:
Run: 6x8x6.5 with a slanted metal roof. Sided in 1/2 inch hardware wire and poultry wire with a walk-in door. Corner posts are 4x4 and base posts are 6x6 landscape timbers, all green treated and stained/sealed. All other construction is 2x4 studs. Corner posts are buried 12 inches and cemented in. Wire is attached with washers and screws.
Lessons Learned: What would I do differently
Double the budget. This is not a joke. •
Determine and SOLIDIFY the ventilation strategy BEFORE building. Create more ventilation than you think you will need. You can always close it up after the fact. •
• Double the timeline.
Put a window on the run side of the coop. Not only would this have created more natural sunlight and nice cross ventilation, but the run is covered, so this window would have been protected from weather.•
• Double my budget. Ooops - was that my out-loud voice?
Fave Features: Details I like best
Pai• nt the interior a nice LIGHT color that makes you smile when you show it off. Use semi-gloss exterior paint for easy cleaning and good reflection. PRIME PRIME PRIME first. Do the floor while you're at it.
If you live where you get a fair amount of snow or rain, raise your whole coop off the ground. It will stay drier.•
Install the largest windows you can afford. Our windows are at roost level - the girls like sunbathing there on chilly days. The Eastern window is nice for sunrise.•
Because of limited space, I made the nest box a single, large, "trough-like" design. •
Cut the people door/pop door about 6-9 inches above the floor if you are planning on doing the deep litter method.•
• If you live in a genuinely cold climate, quit being a tightwad and insulate your coop.
Putting 4 inches of sand in my run was one of the best moves we ever made. The stuff is awesome and the chicken footprints make me laugh.•