Building my first coop.

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by BettyR, Mar 2, 2008.

  1. BettyR

    BettyR Songster

    Mar 1, 2008
    Texas Gulf Coast
    Hi to all! I found this forum while looking for plans to build a chicken coop. I was so happy to find it and there is so much wonderful information.

    My son and I are building a chicken coop out of some very large pump crates that my husband has brought home from work. I have enough wood for the floor and frame and we have enough tin that was given to us from a demo job on a friend’s barn to make the roof. I will need to buy plywood for the floor and paneling for the outside walls and I was wondering what type of paneling for the outside wall would be best?

    The coop is going to be 7' wide x 16' long x 7' high as this is the size of the lumber that I have. I could have cut it down in size but I have more than enough lumber to make the coop that size and I see no reason not to use it.

    Since we live on the Texas Gulf Coast I need a good sturdy material for the outside walls that will hold together in case of a hurricane. We have just started the project and I’ll post pictures of what we have done so far. We plan to fence off the raised part between the ground and the floor with hardware cloth to keep critters out from under it. We haven’t fenced the area yet but plan to fence in about a quarter acre to keep the chickens in.

    We have discussed raising geese in the same area to act as “watch dogs” and we were wondering if anyone had tried this and whether or not it would work?

    I would appreciate any and all help…I’m so excited and looking forward to posting pictures of my work in progress and then my new babies. I want to have enough eggs for my family of 6, my extended family and enough extra to take to the farmer's market for a little extra cash to help pay for feed.



    Last edited: Mar 2, 2008
  2. countryboy

    countryboy Songster

    Oct 31, 2007
    hi betty, welcome to the forum.
  3. kstaven

    kstaven Crowing

    Jan 26, 2007
    BC, Washington Border
    Welcome to the forum betty. I have a question. Since you live in a hurricane zone, are you not worried about the wind getting under the coop and lifting it, much like happens to mobile homes in a hurricane? I think I would be dropping four corner posts into concrete to stabilize everything just in case. Beyond that the framing looks good and solid.

    I would go with wood panelling on the walls. Metal tears in high winds and becomes flying shrapnel.
  4. Dixiedoodle

    Dixiedoodle Songster

    Apr 14, 2007
    Hello! I am planning my coop on "Not having to make many cuts [​IMG]". Welcome..enjoy..Dixie
  5. Scrambled Egg

    Scrambled Egg Flock Mistress

    Aug 29, 2007
    Fayetteville, NC
    Gonna be alot of chickens in that big coop!! [​IMG]
  6. tiffanyh

    tiffanyh Songster

    Apr 8, 2007
    Great! Keep the pics coming!
  7. BettyR

    BettyR Songster

    Mar 1, 2008
    Texas Gulf Coast
    Quote:Thanks to everyone for the warm welcome!

    We are planning to use wood as metal is way too expensive for the siding and I really don't like the looks of metal siding but there are so many choices in wood siding that I was wondering if there was one that was favored for coops.

    As for the coop lifting off the ground....that is pretty unlikely but if my husband thinks it's necessary we can anchor it to the ground with stakes and straps should a hurricane be heading in our direction.

    A lot of the homes and about all of the sheds in this area are built up off the ground in the same way as this coop because it's less expensive than pouring a foundation and if it shifts the home or shed is a lot easier to level; so far I've never seen one flip over in a hurricane. Foundations crack in this swampy ground and they are very expensive to repair.
  8. noodles

    noodles In the Brooder

    Feb 25, 2008
    Madison, AL
    I am planning on putting plywood on the floor then linoleum to help ease cleaning..
  9. BettyR

    BettyR Songster

    Mar 1, 2008
    Texas Gulf Coast
    Quote:That is what I am planning to do as well. I was also thinking that a door on each end would make the clean up easier but I'm having a hard time deciding how to arrange the roosts so as to keep a center walk way open for ease in cleaning.

    I'm planning to have covered nest boxes on the outside of the coop. I would prefer that the chickens use the coop as a place to roost and spend most of their time outdoors (less mess) and it gets so hot in the daytime here they would be much better off out doors in the fresh air.

    I have a flock of ducks that were raised in much the same way, they are totally free to come and go as they please (we have no fence or housing for them); the ones that survived are now totally self-sufficient. We have a 1/2-acre pond that they stay on at night where as I plan to put my chickens under lock and key at night and I also plan to provide them with about a 1/2 acre fenced run.

    I know there will be losses but the ones that survive to reproduce will pass these traits on to their offspring and in a few years the resulting offspring will be hardy enough to care almost completely for themselves.
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2008
  10. twigg

    twigg Cooped up

    Mar 2, 2008
    I might be tempted to avoid the linoleum on the floor. You could deep litter in a coop that size, just keep a dropping pit under the perches and clean up will be minimal.

    Alternately cover the floor with wood chippings which remove easily and absorb most of the waste.

    Linoleum will provide a wonderful home for mites which are likely to get under the edges and pop out at night to pester the hens

    Just a thought

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