Buy or build?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by jdkc4d, Dec 26, 2014.

  1. jdkc4d

    jdkc4d New Egg

    Jan 28, 2013
    St. Louis metro
    Last winter (2014) I decided I was going to try and build one of those Converticoops. This did not turn out well. I was faced to realize, when it comes to woodworking, I just don't have the skills. I liked the idea of the chicken ark/tractor. My backyard is mostly clover, so I figured it would be good for the birds plus they could help to break some of that up. Over the summer, a storm tore up my shed pretty good. The roof is mostly caved in, the siding is falling off. I intend to tear down the shed when it gets a bit warmer.

    The shed was huge. Probably built in the 50's when the house was built. Tearing it down will open up a huge amount of space on that side of my garden. It's like 10x12. That has me thinking, maybe it would be a good spot for a more permanent bird structure.

    As previously mentioned. I have no woodworking skills, so building something from all the awesome plans you guys show off seems out of the question. Where can I get some kind of pre-built, or kit coop. I am looking to start with 3-4 birds, and probably max out around 6.
  2. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge True BYC Addict

    Mar 9, 2014
    Northern Colorado
    There are a lot of places available. Having your location listed will help people send you in the right direction.
    You can add you location in your profile and it will appear in the post.

    Something to remember when doing up a coop from a kit is that the square footage is often misrepresented. A lot of times they include the nest box spaces as floor space and that leads one to think it is larger than it actually is. I have found going larger in the beginning is better than having to redo the coop after they begin to have issues.

    Looking forward to updates.

  3. jdkc4d

    jdkc4d New Egg

    Jan 28, 2013
    St. Louis metro
    Added. Good tip on the size.
  4. speedy2020

    speedy2020 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 24, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2014
  5. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge True BYC Addict

    Mar 9, 2014
    Northern Colorado
    Ok so with where you are you get snow and wind right?
    Personally I would look for a crate on Craigs list or a playhouse someone is getting rid of but if you are not handy and know no one that is they can be more trouble in the end.

    Have you thought about a hoop coop? They look easy enough to build. I have not made one myself so I am not able to give tips.

    Is there any salvageable wood or siding on the shed you are tearing down? If you use pallets you can use the siding still. Search pallet coops on here and you will see tons of things people have made with them.
    There are of course things to remember....
    Ventilation is very important.
    Predator protection, yes even in the city.
    Run drainage so there is not mud. (Mud brings bacteria, disease and smell)

    Truth is some folks have done some amazing things with crates. I happen to really like this one.

    So many options to choose from when working with reclaimed crates.
  6. 55JAMES55

    55JAMES55 New Egg

    Dec 26, 2014
    I also recommend using craigslist because many of the coops or play sets can easily be used i know someone who built a coop by taking a swing set and removed the swings ect. And just put a door and chicken wire around the whole thing and it turned out looking half decent also a tip is to allow 2-3+ square feet of coop space per bird depending on the breed size you choose
  7. RichnSteph

    RichnSteph Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2014
    Adkins Texas
    I also went the route of a shipping container. Speedy2020 is who inspired me to make the attempt.

    I have to confess to having zero wood working skills also so this was the single best way I could get a coop together that would look nice (it looks much better now that it's been sealed and stained) and not fall over if a stray leaf fell on top of it.

    In your case I'd look to see what could be salvage out of the fallen shed and go from there.

    Last edited: Dec 26, 2014
  8. RWD

    RWD Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 2, 2011
    Wartrace TN.
    BUY, only from someone who also raises chickens (not someplace that sells coops retail) if you can afford it. If you cant afford it, then build what you can and make do. It does not get any simpler......
  9. tracecom

    tracecom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 16, 2010
    You might considering building and re-using as much of the shed materials as possible. Maybe even hire a local handyman to provide the construction skills while you define what you want for the chicks, and be his helper/hander/holder.
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2014
  10. yellowchicks

    yellowchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 27, 2014
    My Coop
    Agree. Fix up and re-purpose shed could be much faster and cheaper than tear down for new construction.

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