Automatic Coop Door Openers

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by DirtDiva, Jan 6, 2013.

  1. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 8, 2011
    Magnolia, TEXAS
    My Coop
    We are building a new coop, thinking about installing automatic coop door opener. Any recommendations which work best? Pros/Cons in installing one? We don't mind letting the girls in/out the coop, but since building new coop, thought about this option. thanks!
     
  2. Gargoyle

    Gargoyle Overrun With Chickens

    3,417
    755
    316
    Apr 13, 2011
    Fox Valley, IL
    My Coop
    We have Pullet Shut, it has been very good. Most of the other designs are "guillotine" type, and I'm concerned that litter, etc., could block the runners or keep it from shutting fully.

    That said, even with the Pullet Shut I have to watch that litter doesn't get into the threshold and keep it from closing all the way.
     
  3. amyduck

    amyduck Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 20, 2011
    Here's some info I put together for a friend recently
    - Lots of info on the "First Door" (my door, I love it, but US made ones were not available when I got it.),
    - less info on another door I thought looked good, and
    - finally youtube videos of some other doors and DIY doors.


    First Door, this is the one I bought (I think it's probably more than the ones being made in the U.S.)
    You can get it at any of these places:

    1. The manufacturer in Germany
    https://axt-electronic.eu/us/

    2. Well's Poultry, a distributor in England (where I bought mine because there was a sale at the time):
    http://www.chicken-house.co.uk/acat...ontent=Autodoors&dm_i=C7Q,Y77G,1VGOR3,2URKH,1

    3. Foy's Pet Supplies, here in the U.S.
    http://www.foyspigeonsupplies.com/featuredproduct.html


    For the parts I bought, this is the price today:

    From AXT the German manufacturer, the price with shipping is about $265
    VSBb Electronic Doorkeeper with Batteries 01-002
    $145.00
    $145.00
    BS-D Digital-Battery-Operated Timer -QuasiAnalog-(VSBb Accessor) 01-017
    $62.00

    $62.00
    HS Aluminum Henhouse Gate 01-030
    $28.00

    $28.00
    Subtotal:
    $235.00
    Shipping: $30.00
    Total: $265.00



    From Well's in the UK, it is about $276 (depends on the money exchange)

    REF​
    DESCRIPTION​
    QUANTITY​
    PRICE​
    COST​
    REMOVE​
    13 [​IMG] VSBb / VSB b Automatic Door Opener
    £82.50​
    £82.50​
    14 [​IMG] hen door for use with VSB automatic door opener
    £16.52​
    £16.52​
    16 [​IMG] Timer for VSB automatic Doors
    £36.66​
    £36.66​
    Subtotal
    £135.68​
    Shipping (North America)
    £37.00​
    Total
    £172.68
    or $276​
    (depending on the exchange)

    From Foy's is about $320 without tax (I'm not sure if it is charged or not.
    2100 Doorkeeper (outside installation) $189.95 (it has a light sensor) (none in stock right now)
    2102 Timer (optional) $83.95
    2103 Metal Sliding Door 9 x 13 $26.95 (chicken size, they have larger ones too)
    UPS ground Shipping is about $20.00
    (If you use your own door, the warranty is void).

    So... to summarize:
    From Germany AXT: $265 including shipping
    From UK: Wells: $276 including shipping
    From US: Foys: $320 not including tax (if applicable)

    or without the timer:

    From Germany AXT: $203 including shipping
    From UK: Wells: $217 including shipping
    From US: Foys: $232 not including tax (if applicable)


    FYI - I received the door and parts in November 2008. The timer malfunctioned in January 2010 and I contacted the manufacturer in Germany.They were very helpful (although communicating was a little hard) and they sent me a new circuit board for free! It was easy to switch out and I have not had any problems with it since. I received it very quickly - only 8 days after I contacted them - which really surprised me. They just asked me to send the bad one back to them after I received the replacement.

    One advantage to this one is they have different size doors if you want to let your geese out.
    By the way, the string that pulls up the door might make it look flimsy, but I have not had any problems, and if installed properly, I think the design won't allow for the door to be opened by predators.
    At the time I got it there were no domestic units available yet - but here is another I found, that I like.

    There are others, but I haven't had a chance to find them..... they will come in another email.

    Second Door is much less $180 I think...
    (not including tax and shipping - but there may be other parts you need to get too, I'm not sure):


    http://www.chickendoors.com/products.htm

    I like the different ways this can be programmed with the magnet!
    Here are a few more just for fun - some much more complicated than others and some much cheaper than the ones above! And some pretty clever ones too! I wish these were available when I got mine!.

    http://www.smarthome.com/31427/Add-A-Motor-D20-Chicken-Coop-Motor/p.aspx

    http://www.automaticchickencoopdoor.com/

    http://www.make-digital.com/make/vol22/?pg=66&pm=2&u1=friend#pg68





    There are more, but I had to stop somewhere!!! By the way, I have not had a problem with the door closing all the way - maybe if I used wood shavings I would, but it's been fine.
     
  4. chickety china

    chickety china Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 4, 2013
    With the VSB opener, do you need the timer? If you don't get it, then is the opener rendered useless or does it have any built-in functionality beyond the motor for opening and closing?
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013

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