Just starting a post here for our new Coop and Run. Just getting a feel for the process right now but will try to post everything in the next few days.
We live on a large lot but, because of dogs, cats, coyotes, etc, the chicks can't be free range except for highly supervised periods, so the coop and attached run were designed to be a comfortable size for up to 6 chickens. Raised coop is 5x6, and the run consists of the area under the coop plus an additional 60 sq ft.
I designed the entire project with Sketchup and really enjoyed having the ability to get a good feel for the finished project before ever taking up a tool. The final design drew on many ideas presented in the coop section here, in responses to my questions in this forum and from "Building Chicken Coops for Dummies". The All-In-One design was the inspiration for the design and for some implementation details.
The coop has a lot of ventilation for our hot summers. My wife wanted a real roof, and since we live in earthquake country, and the roofing adds a fair amount of weight on top of an elevated design, I put the coop on 4x4 piers embedded in concrete. I wanted overhang on all sides of the roof for extra shading in the hot summer and rain protection.
The original design was planned to fit inside a fence around the vegetable garden. The fence keeps at least the dogs out of the garden providing a relatively safe place to let the chickens out when supervised. At the end, we decided we wanted to see the run from our patio so will change the fence configuration. (Will post when that's done)
Floor was pre-assembled upside down so that 4x4 legs could be attached square and plumb. I thought that this would be easier than trying to set the posts first.
Floor assembly was lowered into concrete pier forms. After leveling the floor assembly, the tubes were filled with concrete and left for several days.
Initial framing was very spare allowing easy changes to the wall details as the project progressed.
Further work on more detailed framing and the application of siding was pretty conventional. I was, however in a frenzy of assembling and did not get any pictures until the coop was nearly finished.
The roof was probably overkill, but I did lay down roofing felt, and attached drip edge.
Ready for roof tiles.
Chickens went into the coop at about 5 weeks. Our cat Sunny was always fascinated with chicks.
Run framing. Walls were pre built including hardware cloth for shear strength.
Run foundation Assembling run walls
I gave a lot of consideration to predator protection. We have a good supply of raccoons, possum, skunks, coyotes in addition to our own dogs and cats. My original intent was to surround the coop and run by laying hardware cloth under the run, but seeing a lot of support for using a 2 ft skirt around the bottom, I went that route.
For the coop access door, nest box,and run doors, I plan to implement spring latch with a hidden wire, but went with the expedient of using a keyed lock for now.
Hardware cloth skirting all around coop
Human friendly but Predator proof?
Eventually I'll figure out a better lock
system but this was easy to implement.
Links to the Sketchup projects for the coop and run will be provided later with instructions for using them.
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