A-frame vs. Square coop?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by 4acresNachick, Apr 17, 2011.

  1. 4acresNachick

    4acresNachick Out Of The Brooder

    71
    1
    39
    Apr 17, 2011
    We have been looking in books and online and are leaning toward an A-frame style coop because of the snow we get in the winter but I was wondering what other people thought. Are there any benefits to one vs. the other?
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

    19,965
    3,131
    476
    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    How big are you making it? If it is short, say like most tractors, the usable space in the top can get pretty limited. But if you are making a walk-in coop, it should make no difference.
     
  3. aggie9296

    aggie9296 Chillin' With My Peeps

    960
    1
    111
    Jan 28, 2011
    Panama City, FL
    x2. I have, er had, an A frame tractor. You really lose usable space in the coop. Now it is a modified A frame run with a square coop.
     
  4. Captain Carrot

    Captain Carrot Chillin' With My Peeps

    471
    5
    111
    Jan 25, 2011
    Austria
    Welcome to the forum!

    Go with the square coop, seriously. I recently built a small A-frame, and it looks really cool. I wanted it for 4 standard sized birds but when it was done, because of the slopping sides it just wasn't big enough. I now have three bantams in there.

    Roosting space and ventilation are also a problem with the A-frame, the roosts have to be pretty low down to make sure that there is no draft from the ventilation on the birds at night. The birds can't roost as high as they would like to.

    I cleaned both of my new coops (A-frame and square) for the first time today and I have to say I found the A-frame easier. One of the sides lifts up on hindges, then I just scraped everything out into a waiting wheel-barrow. Took me 5 minutes. The square one was more difficult as the old litter and dropping where in the corners. If it's a large coop where you would be able to stand up inside then cleaning a square coop isn't a problem.

    The only way you can get away with the A-frame is if it's huge, or if it's just for a couple of bantams like mine.
     
  5. 4acresNachick

    4acresNachick Out Of The Brooder

    71
    1
    39
    Apr 17, 2011
    we are thinking 6ftX6ft at he bottom with a height of 7ft when you stand in the middle'. the nest boxes would be on the back wall with roost perches on the back and side wall. Does that sound big enough for 8 Chickens with a big fenced in area off the front that they'll have access to. with an access door for cleaning and hinge doors off of the nest boxes for egg collection. We haven't
     
  6. Captain Carrot

    Captain Carrot Chillin' With My Peeps

    471
    5
    111
    Jan 25, 2011
    Austria
    6x6 foot with an A-frame will give you a usable space of 6x4 foot which with the 4 square foot of coop space per bird will be enough for 6 standard birds. with the square coop you'll have space for 8 birds. You say you have a lot of snow in winter so you may want to go a little bigger to make sure there is plenty of space in case they can't go outside in winter, maybe 8x8?

    The bigger the run the better, the rule of thumb is 10 square foot per chicken of outside space.

    good luck
     
  7. aggie9296

    aggie9296 Chillin' With My Peeps

    960
    1
    111
    Jan 28, 2011
    Panama City, FL
    Plus you will NEVER end up with ONLY 8 chickens. I only wanted 2. Got 6 now. Hence the modification of the coop. Easier to build bigger than modify later.

    I don't get snow, but it seems that the A frame would shed snow better. Probably do need a bigger footprint if it is not going to be moveable.
     
  8. Delmar

    Delmar Chillin' With My Peeps

    If you build an A frame make sure the clean out access is on the flat side so you don't have to lean in so far. Some of the A frames I have seen look like a back ache waiting to happen!
     
  9. 00BlasterResto

    00BlasterResto Chillin' With My Peeps

    58
    16
    51
    Apr 15, 2011
    indiana
    Just depends on how big you make it. this A-frame I just built is 7x7x14, top door gives access to nesting boxes, middle box is for cleaning and bottom door is great for keeping the food dry. It has only been in operation for about 10 days and I may make a Modification or 2, but so far I am very happy with it.

    This is my first try at a "chicken hut" as I call it.
    When I got my chickens last summer I inherited a little chicken hut with them. after some issues I had with the desighn I started looking around at possible solutions, I decided I liked the a-frame idea. I had the 2X4, plywood, handles and wheels in my barn. A freind had the metal roof left from his barn, so really all I had to pick up were a few latches and the fenceing. In the near furture there will be an electric fence box in the top corner and hot wire running along the bottom on the outside at 6" and 12". I just found this sight. I wish I had seen it a bit sooner to collect some ideas, but I am pretty happy with how my hut turned out.
    This requires 2 people to move, but is not to big of a back breaker ( I am 23 though). Currently houseing 4 it will be housing 10.


    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2011
  10. Captain Carrot

    Captain Carrot Chillin' With My Peeps

    471
    5
    111
    Jan 25, 2011
    Austria
    mighty fine A-frame, well done
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by