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The Pluma Penthouse

By acemario, Mar 12, 2013 | Updated: Jun 4, 2013 | | |
  1. acemario
    700 (3).jpg
    Overview:


    Coop: 3 'x 3' = 9 sq ft

    Run: 2.75' x 8' = 22 sq ft

    Hen Count: 2 - 4

    Total Price: $164.05

    Time: 12hrs


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    After looking for a second coop (thanks chicken-math...), I realized all were out of my price range ($300-$400). I wanted to spend less than $150.

    So, after seeing all of the other coop pages, I decided to build my own. Now, I am no carpenter, although I really do enjoy DIY projects. So, this is an amateur coop for sure.


    I found wood crates for sale on a local classified ad to use as a starting point for my coop. The one I found was 3 foot by 3 foot ($15). If you do not have access to a crate, you can build one using 1x4s and wood paneling (plywood, etc) :
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    I then hammered out one of the sides to use as the door, which will make access to the interior of the coop and cleaning easy-peasy!
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    I primarily used 2x3s because they are less expensive and weigh less. They also make the coop easier to move. I first decided to make the frame for the roof. I cut the wood at a 45 degree angle so that when I put them together, it would be a 90 degree point. This would be the top of the roof. I then cut both pieces the same length on another 45 degree angle on the other end of the board, where the frame would connect to the coop. I didn't use an exact measurement... just trial and error! (Thus all of the small pieces cut off in the picture) :


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    I used a metal bracket to connect the frame together:
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    I then started the interior of the coop. I first marked where I wanted to put the roost in the coop (don't forget to make sure it's level):
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    I then screwed the piece left over from one of my roof frames as the platform to hold the roost board. I decided to put mine 8 inches from the floor and 8 inches from the wall. This should give the hens enough room to stretch their wings:
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    I then connected the roost onto the two platforms I had built. I screwed a 2x3 across the top of the opening to give the crate more security, make a spot to connect the front roofing frame, and make a spot to connect the coop door. You will notice I also screwed two small pieces into the back corners to make it easier to connect the roof frame to the back of the crate:
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    Here is the basic skeleton of the coop. I still haven't connected the roof frame:
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    Next I made the legs of the coop. I used 4x4s and cut them 18 inches long:
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    Here is a close up of a leg. I used two long screws to attach it to the coop, and then when all four legs were attached, I stood the coop up and screwed the legs in from the inside as well. You can see I also attached the hinge to the opening of the coop.
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    Here is the coop with the door attached:
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    Picture of the inside-- I have not attached the roof frames because I plan on adding windows and the nesting box first. It is much easier to do this before the roof gets in the way!
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    Here is another basic picture of the skeleton of the coop. I will attach the 8 foot 2x3s to the legs of the coop with a 2x3 at the end to create the run. The coop entrance will be on the front left side (looking at the picture on the right).
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    Next I worked on the roof frame. I created a window using plexiglass, and 1/2"x1" wood. I attached the window to the plywood using hinges. Be very careful when you go to screw the plexiglass to the wood. I cracked several before I got it right. You have to use a drill and drill out holes bigger than the pointy end of the screw, but not as big as the head. That way, the plexiglass has a better chance of staying in tact and not cracking (although some still cracked when I used this method. Eventually, I got it right. :) :

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    Now the window! I decided to use the "sliding door" method!! I made a frame, connecting the plexiglass in the same way as the window above. I then cut out a hole in the crate a little bit smaller than the frame. I created a track for the window to slide on and nailed some baseboards above the window (this creates the track). I also put on the hardware cloth behind both windows.
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    Because the entrance to the coop and the nesting box was about 4 inches off the ground, I decided to create a little step for the chicks.
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    Now, for the final touches on the roof. I decided to hang the roof 3 inches over the edge on both sides. So, I just screwed them into my two frames! Progress!!!!
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    I then connected the roof to the coop. Look! It's actually looking like a coop now!
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    Now for the nesting box. Ugh! This took FOREVER to do. Because I put the nesting box on the same side that the roof slants down on, i had to change the slope of the roof on the nesting box. This also prevented me from creating access to the eggs through the lid of the box. So, I decided to create a swinging door on the top-back of the box for access to the eggs. Here's to hoping it works when i attach the roofing material.
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    I then created the entryway to the coop. I used the same sliding door technique, but this time, I attached eyelets to the two sides of the door (I will attach a chain to them with a pulley system, thus making it possible to open and close the door from the outside. I also created door stoppers on the track, so that the door won't open more than it needs to, and it will remain right on the hole to close the door.
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    This picture shows the stopper on the track. You are looking at the door from the ground (weird picture)...
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    Well, now that the coop details were done, it was time to work on the frame. I honestly did this as I went. I just attached the 8 ft 2x3s to the bottom to create the floor. Then, I attached the taller 2x3s and used 2x2s for the roof. Next I will create a bit more support for the run, nail on the chicken wire, paint the coop, and put on the roof!
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    Here it is all painted with the roof. The only thing I added was a holding space for a 5 gallon bucket with chicken nipples, and put on the chicken wire! It turned out even better than I intended :) I couldn't get a picture before it sold.
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    The buyers were going to put 5 small hens in it, so I added another roost (not pictured).
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Comments

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  1. acemario
    Thanks! Yeah, it turned out better than I thought. I wish I would have followed some plans though... I think I would have finished much quicker.
  2. miquwid
    that's really neat I might have to try something like that!

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