We are first time chicken owners. We wanted to have some fun with this.
The kids decided on a Dr. Suess themed coop. I looked around online and didn't find to many ideas. I am not a big fan of following a plan anyway, so we had to wing this one.
I wanted to make the most out of every board and sheet of plywood. So I started to lay some boards on the ground and made sure they fit on a half sheet of ply
From here I just built the outside and worked out the doors and windows once I had it roughed out.
Since It gets pretty cold here in upstate NY we wanted to add a little insulation to the coop. All sides, floor and roof are insulated.
Foam insulation for the egg box lid.
Next was some primed sheathing on all the sides.
We wanted this to be big and bold so the colors had to stand out.
Lowes carries this kind of asphalt/fiberglass roofing. The price is right and its easy to work with. The bonus is how light weight this stuff really is. Since its a chicken tractor it needs to be mobile.
Next was the door. I used tongue and grove pine and put it on a slant to keep with the theme.
I added a fake window in the shape of an egg and an adjustable vent above the door. There is another roof vent on the opposite side.
Now for the wheels. I decided to use 3/4 bar welded onto some thick angle iron to span the distance I needed. I drilled holes in the bar for cotter pins to attach the wheels.
I wanted to add a run to the coop and this would also act as leverage so I can pick up the coop and move it like a wheel barrow around the yard. I have plans to add a hitch so I can tow it with the lawn mower.
The fence pickets are cut out with a bandsaw. And to keep with the theme none of them are the same. After the first few shapes I almost ran out of designs.
The run is about 8' long and 4' tall. I put 3x2 wire fencing on the tops and sides. The floor is a "floating" design with wire also. I wanted a way to keep out digging predators. I can raise up the floor when I move the coop. If I decide to keep it in one place I will bury some wire in the perimeter around the run.
I added roosting 2x4s on the second level. Under the bars and also on the bottom floor is a FRP panel. Its the same stuff on commercial bathroom walls. It wipes down and cleans real easy, I figured this would be a good thing seeing how messy these birds are. I also have enough to do the sides if they get really messy. The steps are temp for now. Since the chics are only 7 weeks they need a little help getting to the top.
Overall the project went well. Since It didn't have any square corners it did make it a little annoying to measure and cut things. I still need to add some screens to the widow. The ramp to the ground folds up and seals up the exit. This should also help on the cold nights.