Like many, I started with just a couple chickens. Each year I get a couple more and I don't think that will change any time soon. With that in mind, it was time to upgrade my little coop. My original Coop ~~>

This project took several months simply due to gathering materials and trying to construct this after work or while watching my 2 yr old. Much of the materials I was able to scavenge, I to try keep my costs low. This took basic carpentry skills.

I started by laying the foundation on block. I opted not to dig because of building code restrictions and I started this in Jan. and wasn't sure if the concrete would even set.

These 4X4 logs were salvaged from a pipe company that shipped their pipe on these, then threw them away. 9 ft long oak, talk about lucky.

Window I built out of plexiglass that was lying around.

Showing how I notched the back wall. Just used a circular saw to cut out about an inch of both logs.

First wood purchase, couple of 2 x 4s for the roof. Support beams are pallet wood.

Plywood added as well. Another purchase.

I went with Enduro fiberglass roof. This is not metal, its supposed to last as long, but its quiet and very easy to use.
All in all, with wood, nails, and roofing I think I was somewhere around $200 so far.

I framed the door before the walls. I definitely would have done this part different. I bought the door for $10 at a reuse store. I'll probably build a new door for this. The big issue is once the front walls were build it pushed the frame out and I had to do some serious cutting and sanding to fit it back.

The cordwood was all cut to 10" and stripped of bark. Reading some of the tips to build an actual house, they recommend 12" logs or bigger, but I'm not too worried about the R-Value.

The mortar around the cordwood is 3 part sand, 2 part soaked sawdust, 1 part portland cement and 1 part hydrated lime. This is a recipe from some of the pros. What I didn't know is the combination of portland cement and hydrated lime is some harsh stuff. Super alkaline, I had some pretty bad burns on my hands at first. I had to buy a box of latex gloves for protection.

I used beer and whiskey bottles to give a stained glass affect. I took the bottle, put a mason jar on top of it, wrapped it with tin foil, then duck taped them together. The mason jar allows for more light to shine through, and I hope the tin foil will help transfer more light.

The chinking between the logs was an oldschool recipe that included clay, ash, and salt. Its hard stuff but I'm not sure about the durability. If I have to continually replace it, I may start using a more modern mix. My wife actually did most of the chinking. It was nice working on this together.

Cedar shakes were left over from a project my parents had. Still think they would have fairly cheap.

The run is about 10x10x8. I'm going to add several perches to it. Its a work in progress. I've also yet to shingle the back wall, but the rain comes from the other side most of the time.

A view of the bottles.

I did a brooder inside. I read about this and am going to try it out next year. Small 4x6" hole they can escape from the bigger girls. We've done 3 generations of chicks in the basement and its a lot of hassle.


All in all this was a fun project. I learned a lot and I hope to build another in the future. I would love to be able to build a log cabin to live in so this was great practice.