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Welded galvanized steel tubing frame chicken tractor

By Zorak, Jun 26, 2014 | Updated: Jul 1, 2014 | | |
  1. Zorak
    [​IMG]
    This is the result of spending way too much time designing a chicken tractor. I wanted something light enough for my kids to drag to the next spot (or tow to the next spot with the lawn tractor), that looked presentable, and would work for a few hens.

    [​IMG]

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    The crank handle raises and lowers the ramp and locks into place.


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    I used spring latches to attach the ends. The hairpins were added for extra security against raccoons.

    [​IMG] Interior view from the pull handle/window end. The ramp is locked up in this picture. [​IMG] View of the window end and pull/tow handle. [​IMG] [​IMG] Another one on the way! This frame is about 99% done. I still need to add another cross member in the large open space in the top floor. I realized this when I started adding the hardware cloth. I also need to touch up the gray primer spots with a silver metallic spray paint that closely matches the look of the tubing. The paint/primer won't stick to the galvanized finish but it will stick to the welded areas where the zinc coating gets burned away.

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Comments

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  1. Zorak
    Oh, the ramp does not quite touch the ground. The rope is tied so that it will wind up a few inches higher than the ground.
  2. Zorak
    Actually, I was a welder for a number of years. I'm an electrical engineer now, though. My boys typically cut, bend, and saddle the pipe. I fit it up while they tack weld it. I then weld it up. Galvanized metal is particularly unhealthy to weld, so while we take a lot of precautions I keep their possibility of exposure to a minimum. They do a lot of the carpentry parts, too.
  3. ChickInDelight
    Seriously? Your kids bent the pipe? I figured you for a professional welder.
  4. Zorak
    I know that PVC and wood are usually the material if choice, but definitely look into using EMT or even rigid conduit for your next built. Lots of connection options and easy to bend with an inexpensive bender. My kids bent the pipe for this one.
  5. Zorak
    Thanks! I expected that the galvanized steel would be durable enough for continuous contact with the ground.
  6. ChickInDelight
    Yeah - those rockers look ideal as long as the chickens are upstairs! I wish I had your talent. My next build is a hoop coop for roosters.
  7. ChickInDelight
    Also... does your ramp rest on the ground? I found that is a sore point in my tractor and need to put a dowel or something across the bottom to keep it off the ground. That is such a clever and attractive design!
  8. Zorak
    In this design, the hens are upstairs with the ramp up and locked when the tractor is moved. It can be dragged by one person or lifted and carrier by two to the next spot. I just make sure to lock the ramp the night before after they have climbed up to the roost
  9. ChickInDelight
    I am finding when I drag my tractor, with pullets inside, I tend to end up on their legs. I am putting wheels on mine as a result. Will you be dragging yours full, or empty?
  10. Zorak
    Thanks! I will be adding a few more pictures shortly.

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