Anyone Have Metal Siding on Coop?


8 Years
Mar 4, 2011
We are converting the old horse shed to our coop, which seemed like a good idea at first. Working with the stuff, though, is getting really frustrating! Does anyone have a coop with metal siding? Here's a pic before we got started.


Here's where we're getting messed up the most. Putting in vents. We will definitely need to be able to shut them all tight as we get serious snow storms here. Here's a pic of the inside.


We're putting up plywood on the inside. We were going to cut all the tin out on that front wall, the one where the doorway is, above the top 2x4s for winter venting. I don't think we have a choice really but to close those from the outside. On the sides you can see that the roof angles up, we were thinking we'd cut that whole top-left section out (and the matching section on the opposite side,) and cover it with hardware cloth and make the closure with a hinge so that most of it folds down, and a smaller chunk folds up. That way we can have the entire thing open during the Summer, and only a smaller section open at the top in the Winter.

Anyone has any ideas on how best to do this? Advice? Experience trying to work around a metal coop? Thoughts? Tin snips don't hardly do a thing to it but mangle it, we picked up a few new cutting blades yesterday to try out.

(There are also two windows going in on the sides and in the door to provide more light / ventilation, but that's pretty straight forward. The entire thing backs up against a bigger, wooden barn, which forms the sheds back wall. We're also cutting a large "window" into that to provide more ventilation, I figured that would be especially good during the winter since it can be a large vent which is also completely sheltered.)
We used steel siding on our run we used 1 piece high and wire from there up. In 2 weeks we'll be putting the same steel siding on for the roof. The only way i can figure you could try and find windows for a mobile home. They can be framed out pretty thinly screen or wire them over from the inside and put the interior of the windows outward so you caqn open and close from the outside. Something like these storm windows.
We're using something like that for the windows, but I am not sure they will be the best for Winter ventilation
You could always cut pieces of styrofoam to fit into the window space inside in the winter for extra insulation. Other than drilling holes and making it look like colander, i've got nothin! I'm sorry )O:
If you are going to do it by hand you need the giant big tin snips not the regular aviation-type snips. And yeah, it still does not produce the absolute cleanest cut in the world, also not the fastest. You can remove the siding panel (unscrew from purlins) and use a circular saw; or if you are very brave and confident with a circular saw you can do it in place (I wouldn't personally). Expect sparks all over and horrible screeching noises. I am told there is also a power tool you can rent, I believe it is called a nibbler or something like that? Ask. I've been told it is the best thing since sliced bread for cutting metal siding (well obviously it's gotta be a lot BETTER than sliced bread as far as its ability to cut metal
) but have not actually used one.

Could you explain why you are expecting to have to close vents from the outside? Sorry, maybe I'm just too tired and hot right now, but I'm not getting it

Chances are pretty high you'll have to insulate that metal, at least by putting up plywood. Otherwise (do I remember correclty that you are in Michigan or the Colorado mts or something like that, where it is pretty freezy?) the bare metal turns into a condensation/frost farm and causes humidity problems unless you have MAJOR ventilation such as one whole open side of the coop.

Good luck, have fun,

patandchickens, you are so awesome, I swear you answer all of my questions.

We have a Dremel Trio pivoting handle rotary tool that we are going to be breaking in, it's what my husband picked up some new cutting blades for yesterday. We're going to give that a try and hope hope hope for the best on that front.

My husband and I are a bit at odds on the closures on the inside / outside thing. We argued, er, I mean, discussed this, for some time late last night before deciding we would need to go back out and actually be looking at it again before we could understand what one another were trying to say. I'll quiz him again tonight when he gets home and try to understand better, but basically I think he was saying that if we didn't have the closures on the outside, snow and rain would blow between the metal sheeting and the plywood (which we are putting up inside, btw,) and get the plywood all wet. Which does make sense, but we were already planning on filling the rest of the gaps with "Great Stuff" before we put up the plywood, so I don't understand why the ones left by the vents are different, or why attaching some trim to the plywood that covers the gaps is "ridiculous".

On the subject, though, yes, we are in Michigan, do you think the plywood will be enough, or should we actually be insulating?
We are converting a metal shed - I have an image on my page.
We bought a jigsaw for the project and it works great. We drilled holes to start the lines of cuts, and also used tin snips on some parts.
I found metal venting covers/squares that we screwed in over our back vents, I think they may be gable vents? Inside the vent covers I added hardware cloth.
Good luck!
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I'm with you on this one, for whatever that's worth.

On the subject, though, yes, we are in Michigan, do you think the plywood will be enough, or should we actually be insulating?

Plywood would be enough. Insulation is nice if you want to do it, but will be hard to get the carpentry tight enough to be mouseproof given that you are doing a conversion of a metal-sided pole barn. I think if it were me I would probably skip the insulation b/c the little bit of extra warmth you'd get would not IMO offset the likelihood of a giant explosion of rodents
Plywood should IMO be enough to prevent condensation/frost/humidity problems unless you are planning on seriously HEATING the coop (I am not advocating this!) in which case it would be stupid not to insulate just for efficiency/economics reasons anyhow.

Good luck, have fun,

Well, it turns out that he simply did not understand what I was trying to explain. When we had the chance to sit down and I could sketch it out for him, he agreed that seemed like the best option.

Glad to hear it about the insulation. We can't afford to put it in right now, so it would mean ripping out the coop interior again before this Winter to put it in, ugh! The only thing I'm planning on heating is the water

ll, that looks great! May I ask what the purpose of the plastic is? Keeping it dry, insulating...? We haven't got any
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The plastic was just so my daughter wouldn't cut her fingers/hand on the cut edge of the window opening, she was using the window to give us pretend ice cream cones from her "ice cream store". Just a scrap piece of sheet plastic for temporary use.
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