8x8 Coop Opinions

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by joeschmeau, Jan 26, 2011.

  1. joeschmeau

    joeschmeau New Egg

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    Dec 20, 2010
    So I'm the new owner of 4.14 acres, and the first thing we want to do is get chickens. I have a huge fenced area for them during the day, but no coop yet. We're thinking about 12-15 hens.

    I'm thinking I want something about 8x6 or 8x8, and am pretty good at framing with dimensional lumber. I've been thinking that it will be raised off the ground about 6-8 inches, will have a 3/4" plywood floor (probably covered w/ some sort of cheap vinyl remnant), and will be framed with 2x4s. I was just thinking today though, that I could save a lot of money if ripped the 2x4s in half. Would a 2x2 be too wimpy?

    Also, what about siding? The cheapest thing I can think of is 1/2" CDX plywood. Is there something cheaper (besides what I can scavenge for free)? For the shed roof, I was thinking about 1/2" plywood covered with some fiberglass corrugated panels. Is that a good/bad option?

    I'm really trying to do this on the cheap, and my calculations already have me in the $700 range. I'm hoping to get that closer to $400 or $500. Any suggestions?
     
  2. Ravishaw

    Ravishaw Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 7, 2010
    steel connectors are convenient but very expensive. I used a bunch for my coop and although now I feel like my coop could withstand a major earthquake, it was very expensive to build. I used steel to hang the rafters, steel to connect the floor to the posts, steel to connect just about everything.

    Then I bought a nailgun for my compressor and what a difference THAT made. That said the one thing I'd want to do in the future is enclose about 30 more square feet outside the "coop" area to make an enclosed run for my hens.
     
  3. oldchickenlady

    oldchickenlady Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 9, 2010
    Cabot, AR
    If you are planning on 12-15 chickens you will need an 8x8 coop. One benefit of that is less cutting to do since the plywood is already in 4x8 dimensions. I used the cheap type of plywood you described and then painted it very well with 3 coats of barn paint I got on sale from Tractor Supply. You can reduce your expenses by checking salvage places instead of Home Depot or Lowes for wood, windows (I found 2 trailer windows for $10.00 each) or roofing. Craigslist is also a good place to check for scrap lumber (from construction, torn down fences or decks, etc). My coop has a type of metal roofing. The unemployed neighbor who helped me build it had it left over from some other job he had done. Recycled tin would work, also. Or plywood with shingles left over from a reroof by someone. I don't think I would use 2x2's...I am not a carpenter by any means, but I just don't think it would be strong enough. I used landscape timbers for the legs on my coop (no level ground around here) and there is enough room at the back to store 5 gallon buckets underneath that I have filled up with poop scraped off the poop board under their roost. I plan on putting it on my compost heap or give to a neighbor for their garden. Oh...don't forget Habitat for Humanity home stores, you can find good stuff there sometimes, if you have one close to you. Take your time and collect your supplies a little at a time and it wont be such a chunk of change out of your wallet at one time.
     
  4. catdaddy66

    catdaddy66 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 18, 2009
    Lugoff, SC
    I have 12 hens in an 8' x 8' coop and they have lots of room. Mine was NOT raised and should have been, but I would raise yours even more than the 6-8" you plan to have it. Think of the work your back will have if it is too low... I feel it every day!! [​IMG] I think the rest of your material choices are right on especially the roof with PVC corrugated panels. Don't forget to plan for nest boxes accessible from the outside of the structure. We all have things we would change about our coops so read a lot of the info on the site here. It will give you awesome ideas for your unique situation and needs. Below are pics of my construction.
    [​IMG]
    in the snow...
    [​IMG]
    the bare bones
    [​IMG]
    the walls go up
    [​IMG]
    The front door
    [​IMG]
    The roosts
    [​IMG]
    and nest boxes
     
  5. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    This was my original 8x8 coop. With some new materials and some recycled ones from log home building sites around here, we built it for just under $400. Later, we added 12' to the length so it looks different now. I had 10 hens and 1 rooster in it. You can find the Clutch Hutch in our Large Coops pages and it has about 6 pages of construction photos from the ground up, here:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/coops/images/clutch-hutch/gallery.php

    [​IMG]

    ETA: the roof is pieces of red and green metal roofing, overlapped, sometimes 3 layers thick since the pieces were mostly triangles.
     
  6. Chebidiah Chickens

    Chebidiah Chickens New Egg

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    May 18, 2010
    Blackstone Valley
    For a cheap way to cover the plywood on the roof, search craigslist or visit your local junkyard for bedliners out of old pickup trucks.
    Just use a skill saw and cut out the floors, most of the old ones are 4 x 8, they work great for roofing material as long as you put some type of vapor barrier. I covered a 10 x 8 pallet shed roof for only $20. Good luck with your coop.
     
  7. BWSY

    BWSY Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 16, 2010
    I used truck bedliners for the roof and fence apron. I cut the bottoms out of the bed liner. I found these in a car metal scrap place. The company picked up rotors etc (not whole cars) for metal scrap and had to pick up plastic stuff as part of the deal. The company owner gave away the liners. I over lapped a few for the roof. I screwed the liners into the wood at ground level for the fence aprons.

    For the solid walls I used a roll up garage door. It was the kind that has 4 inch slats that slide out from the others. They are insulated painted metal cut to the length I needed and screwed on at each end. The door came from a replacement door installation job and was free.

    The bedliners may be harder to get free if you don't have a source. Call some garage door installers and you may be able to pick up some roll up doors or regular door panels for your project. Most garage door installers around here just toss the old doors into the dumpster.

    This is how it turned out. I did some more stuff to it after the photo was taken. I also added some temporary greenhouse (free-from a job) panels to the open sides for the colder months. Kinda like a sunroom/screen porch thing.

    It's only 4x8...but my cost was around $80 for the wood, wire fencing and hardware.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. farmer_lew

    farmer_lew Hi-Tech Redneck

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    Jun 29, 2010
    In the hills
    Check out the thread "Coop building Diary" posted by Morgan7787. I am building her an 8 x 8 coop. There are pictures, posted, too.
     
  9. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

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    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    You'll always want more chickens.

    Do an 8 X 12 or an 8 X 16. Something you can section of if you need to. I don't think you'll regret it.

    ... of course, I only have an 8 X 10 coop plus two additional 4 X 10 pens.... wishing I had one more.
     
  10. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    Mar 31, 2008
    Grifton NC
    I'm really trying to do this on the cheap, and my calculations already have me in the $700 range. I'm hoping to get that closer to $400 or $500

    If you build it cheap now, you'll have to rebuild later when prices are higher.

    Do it right from the start, and it will outlast you​
     

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