1. Chickenfiend

    Chickenfiend Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 16, 2008
    Bellville OH
    I was wondering what I could do to make a cheap run. I was planning on using T-posts but i wasnt sure what kind of wire, how many posts or how tall to make the fence. It needs to house 4 Australorps, but i plan on getting more so i need extra space.

  2. Bi0sC0mp

    Bi0sC0mp Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 21, 2008
    i would do it about 6 foot tall and use welded wire if you could but if you going to close then up in a coop at night chicken wire will do just fine and will save you money
  3. lleighmay

    lleighmay Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 21, 2008
    Woodlawn, VA
    I don't really recommend t-posts- my Boer goat decided last summer he wanted to go into the dog pen to visit the girls and pushed over (bent and completely flattened) 3 steel t-posts and strolled on in. I figure if he could do it so could something else like a dog or coyote. Now the dog pen is fashioned with concreted 4x4s and the chicken run will be too if I ever get the darn thing finished. There really is no "cheap" wire anymore- even chicken wire is expensive and it won't keep your birds safe by itself. You can overlay it with 2x4 mesh dog fence and that will help. Hardware cloth is also good to use but costly. A friend used 1x1 mesh wire with no backing and a cat bit his chicken's head off when it stuck its head out to have a look around. As for how high to make it that depends on whether you want go in there; I recommend it be tall enough to walk around. I also recommend chicken wire over the top to secure it from airborne and climbing predators. Hope this helps.

  4. lurky

    lurky Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 4, 2007
    Western MA
    We just made a really good run using 4X4 posts and welded wire. I imagine materials price varies depending on where you are. I think the posts are about $6 and the welded wire varies depending on the height and length of the roll.
  5. Anny

    Anny Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 24, 2008
    Detroit Michigan
    My run was pretty much FREE

    I got old chainlink dog pen from a friend and put it up. You can also find cheap chain link dog pens or fencing on Craigslist.com almost all the time.
  6. gumpsgirl

    gumpsgirl Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    I am going to use landscaping timbers for my posts. They are pressure treated and 8' long, so they would be perfect! As far as the fencing goes, I've been watching craigslist but will more than likely end up at TSC getting a roll of 4 x 4 fencing. Hopefully your craigslist will have more available to you than mine does. [​IMG]
  7. Acre of Blessings

    Acre of Blessings Canning/Sewing Addict

    Apr 3, 2008
    Axton, VA
    Check out Lowe's Hardware and go to the garden center and ask if they have any cull treated landscaping timbers. Usually you can get them for 1/2 off and the welded wire for 5o feet isn't to bad of a price but if you get the 100 foot roll you do save some $$.

    We just fenced in half of our backyard for our critters and I got 47 landscaping timbers for a $1 each (according on what they sell for in your area) and we bought 3 - 50 foot ($35 each roll) and 1 - 100 foot ($65 a roll) of wire and we found some fencing, 140 feet, on Craigslist for $75. So the total cost for fencing in my backyard was $292 + tax for 390 feet of fencing and post combined.

    So if you look and ask you can have a nice size run for little $$ Hope this helps [​IMG]

    ETA: spell check
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 19, 2008
  8. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    The cheapest run is the one you make with scrounged (or deeply discounted) materials. So, I'd look around and see what you can find in the way of wire mesh, and design around that. If you have farm auctions in your area, they are often a good source of affordable fencing, even if it is sometimes used, or try craigslist, freecycle, etcetera.

    I would suggest at least 6x10 for four hens but a lot bigger is a lot better, esp. if you want more in the future. Remember that putting a wire or roof-type top on it is the only way to get really thorough protection against climbing predators such as the ubiquitous raccoon (for hawks, you could just drape netting or string strings across) BUT will require a good bit more material. With or without a top, you'll want your run to be like 5-6' high -- with no top you'll need the height to discourage chickens from leaving, and with a top you'll need the height so you can get in there and work/clean/etc.

    Once you have scrounged your wire, you will know what exact size your run will be [​IMG] I strongly strongly recommend setting 4x4 pressure-treated wood posts for the corners; t-posts are vaguely adequate as line posts but will not last well for a tight solid fence if used as corners. Set your posts at least 3' deep.

    Good luck and have fun,


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