2x2 construction or 2x4 construction??

swampwander

Songster
11 Years
Oct 1, 2008
121
2
111
Mims, Fl
Another thing to consider is distance between studs. A 2x4 will allow for greater distance between studs with the same support as more 2x2's. You may not be saving money in the long run. We have to deal with wind loading here and Dh and I are using 2x4's.
 

Chick_a_dee

Songster
11 Years
May 23, 2008
1,892
15
171
Peterborough, ON
I'm building a smaller coop as a duck house for our ducklings coming in May. I've gone with 2x3 framing. I didn't think the 2x2 would be sturdy enough and didn't allow enough space for batt insulation.
 

Nifty-Chicken

Administrator
BYC Staff
13 Years
Dec 26, 2006
39,625
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My Coop
Imagine my surprise and delight when I did a Google search for "2x2 lumber vs 2x4 price"

.... and this BYC thread popped up! :D

I'm thinking about experimenting a bit with 2x2 lumber, or even ripping a 2x4 in half to see what I can do with it for a light-weight portable run using this hardware cloth I just purchased:
https://amzn.to/3f9ohj9

I'm going to try a few things out to see if I can make it light-weight (and cheaper), but sufficiently strong enough. I'll play the part of a big husky dog, or strong raccoon trying to get in ;)
 

uglycoyote

Hatching
Aug 6, 2020
2
3
3
It seems there's a consensus here that 2x2's are a waste of time and insufficiently strong for a chicken coop.

I have to say this kind of surprises me. I'm thinking about building a bike shed (so maybe I'm slightly off topic since this is a checken coop discussion), and considering the last one that I tore down was made from light flimsy aluminum with barely any structure (a prefabricated metal shed) and it lasted 15 years through all kinds of rain, wind, snow and abuse, it seems like making a structure out of 2x2's would be a huge step up in strength from that.

There are also these kits which they sell -- brackets for making easy-to-construct sheds out of 2x2's (https://www.ezframestructures.com/) that are up to 10ft by 16ft. And even though they are spaced about 2ft apart, they claim the structures are good for snow and wind and perfectly strong. Are those guys crazy?

It seems to me that if you build your roof out of 2x4's, it's going to be so heavy that you will need 2x4's to support it, and if you build your roof out of 2x2's it's going to be light enough that 2x2's can support it. Likewise, flimsy aluminum will support flimsy aluminum. If I pick up a 2x2 and try to flex it, there's some give but it is certainly a lot more rigid than my aluminum shed.

I'm not really clear what it is about chicken coops where everyone feels they need such a heavyweight solution. But there does seem to be something in the air where everyone has convinced everyone that 2x4's are the only material to build with. Can anyone explain this a bit more?
 

Nifty-Chicken

Administrator
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Dec 26, 2006
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@uglycoyote you make some good points and I've wondered the same.

I'm tempted to build a run out of 2x2 to see how it goes as a test.

I also wonder about a coop that has plywood siding and 2x2's being sufficient for basic structure since the plywood would also be adding a lot of rigidity.
 

reddogmaster2

Songster
Jun 10, 2020
638
3,306
183
On The Rolling Plains of Dixie
It seems there's a consensus here that 2x2's are a waste of time and insufficiently strong for a chicken coop.

I have to say this kind of surprises me. I'm thinking about building a bike shed (so maybe I'm slightly off topic since this is a checken coop discussion), and considering the last one that I tore down was made from light flimsy aluminum with barely any structure (a prefabricated metal shed) and it lasted 15 years through all kinds of rain, wind, snow and abuse, it seems like making a structure out of 2x2's would be a huge step up in strength from that.

There are also these kits which they sell -- brackets for making easy-to-construct sheds out of 2x2's (https://www.ezframestructures.com/) that are up to 10ft by 16ft. And even though they are spaced about 2ft apart, they claim the structures are good for snow and wind and perfectly strong. Are those guys crazy?

It seems to me that if you build your roof out of 2x4's, it's going to be so heavy that you will need 2x4's to support it, and if you build your roof out of 2x2's it's going to be light enough that 2x2's can support it. Likewise, flimsy aluminum will support flimsy aluminum. If I pick up a 2x2 and try to flex it, there's some give but it is certainly a lot more rigid than my aluminum shed.

I'm not really clear what it is about chicken coops where everyone feels they need such a heavyweight solution. But there does seem to be something in the air where everyone has convinced everyone that 2x4's are the only material to build with. Can anyone explain this a bit more?
2x2's are not generally accepted in Structural Applications because they aren't considered "Structural" and 2x4's are generally accepted as a Structural Component in construction.

But, its not fair to say that 2x2's won't work in certain applications. The EZ Frame Structure metal connectors will add a higher level of "structural" aspect and might work in a Coop or
Run design.

The one thing I'd make sure to do is to Fasten/Connect the base of the Structure to the Foundation so that it has wind resistance.

But I go back to Generally Accepted Construction Principles and think 2x4 (at least) and not 2x2.

(I seem to remember a story about 3 little piggies building houses and a big bad wolf huffing and puffing...;))



https://www.ezframestructures.com/
 

MVchickens

Songster
9 Years
Dec 8, 2010
170
14
144
Martha's Vineyard MA
2x2 and 2x3 are perfectly adequate for coop construction. I built my main 4'x8' coop with 2x3 lumber 16" on center and its incredibly heavy and overly sturdy. I built my 4x8 tractor out of 2x2 (Ripped 2x4's) to keep the weight down and I am very happy with it. The only reason I would build with 2x4 is for the ease of insulation. I did use 2x4 for the run construction because of the extended spans of hardware cloth.
 

Nifty-Chicken

Administrator
BYC Staff
13 Years
Dec 26, 2006
39,625
24,115
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California - SF East Bay
My Coop
2x2 and 2x3 are perfectly adequate for coop construction. I built my main 4'x8' coop with 2x3 lumber 16" on center and its incredibly heavy and overly sturdy. I built my 4x8 tractor out of 2x2 (Ripped 2x4's) to keep the weight down and I am very happy with it. The only reason I would build with 2x4 is for the ease of insulation. I did use 2x4 for the run construction because of the extended spans of hardware cloth.
I'd LOVE to see some pics of your builds!!!
 

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