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Chicken Ramp Clearance?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by purg3d, Sep 3, 2008.

  1. purg3d

    purg3d Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 2, 2008
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    Delighted to have come across this site while looking for chicken coop designs.. So much that I've decided to tear down a few sheds and build one of my own.

    Since I've never handled chickens before I am unsure of a few things, but hope you folks can shed some light on them.

    Using 100% recycled wood scraps, I am constructing a coop approx. 4x6', ceiling height unknown, but it's sitting on a raised *cinder block (x2)/4x4 foundation.

    I have roughly 2 feet of clearance from coop to ground and want to utilize the under space as part of the run. I've installed a 2x7 board as a ramp coming out of a 7x14" hole in the floor.

    I can only imagine the behavior of a full-sized chicken, and am a bit concerned over the under-coop-ramp, which has a low spot (framing 2x4") that limits the ramp's clearance to roughly 9".

    Will this be a problem for full-sized hens, or bantams for that matter?


    Also, since I have your attention, what is the simplest way to secure a 4x4" corner beam directly to a wooden platform?

    Thank you
     
  2. muddler6

    muddler6 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 12, 2007
    Jefferson County, PA
    Well bantams should be fine. It would depend on what breed of chicken you get and how large they are. Is there a way to enlarge the hole a bit so they can get some more room to get in and out? Or cut a hole in the side of the coop and put the ramp out the side. You can always use some of that recycled lumber to add on to the run if you need to. Chickens are very adaptable to their environment, but they do need enough room to get in and out, and enough living space as well. Welcome to the wonderful world of chickens by the way. They are a lot of fun!!!
     
  3. muddler6

    muddler6 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 12, 2007
    Jefferson County, PA
    By the way, if you have not built the coop yet, feel free to check out mine on the blue link at the bottom of this post. Plus look through all the pictures in the coop design section, and borrow all the ideas you can. Mine sits so the floor is just under waist high, and I can lean in and reach every square inch of the coop if I have to, makes gathering and cleaning pretty easy. It is designed for bantams, but my Buff Orpingtons are in there now and will be through the winter, or if I can build a large coop before that. I have plans for a much larger flock in the future.
     
  4. purg3d

    purg3d Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 2, 2008
    VA
    Thanks for the reply, muddler. I could not find my camera to take a pic, but sketched up a 3D representation of what I've accomplished in a days time.

    [​IMG]

    I may have to use my geometry skills tomorrow and see if i can free up any clearance. Wouldn't want them constantly hitting their heads on a stud.

    For this type of setup, what kind of minimum clearance (height) should i shoot for?

    Thanks again!
     
  5. Dustoff79

    Dustoff79 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 5, 2008
    San Antonio, Texas
    I can't answer the clearance question, but I attached my 4x4's with a bolt. Drill a hole through both the diameter of the bolt (like 3/8") then I used a 1" bit and drilled in 1/2" to sink the head, and using a 1" flat washer on both the head and tail of the bolt and lock washer between the flat washer and nut, tighten, and your done.

     
  6. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    I would like to suggest a slightly different arrangement. The hole in the floor will lose massive amounts of bedding, and also decreases the effective floorspace of your coop.

    Instead, you could build a little 'external stairwell' type enclosure off the side of the building, just big enough to house a pophole (with its bottom sill about 8-12" above the coop floor, to retain bedding) and a little ramp or ladder or 'stepstool' down to ground level. It could probably be as small as 4x4x18", maybe even less. And would make your life and the chickens' rather easier, I betcha.

    Have fun either way,

    Pat
     
  7. Chicabee19

    Chicabee19 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 8, 2008
    n/a
    Instead, you could build a little 'external stairwell' type enclosure off the side of the building, just big enough to house a pophole (with its bottom sill about 8-12" above the coop floor, to retain bedding) and a little ramp or ladder or 'stepstool' down to ground level. It could probably be as small as 4x4x18", maybe even less. And would make your life and the chickens' rather easier, I betcha.

    I second that motion!​
     
  8. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Quote:Do you mean beam (horizontal) or post (vertical)? Since you say 4x4, I am going to guess you mean post. In which case:

    The simplest thing is to notch out a space for the posts at all 4 corners of the floor plywood. Then SECURELY attach chocks made of 6-8" sections of 2x4 onto the two relevant faces of the post to be props on which the floor plywood will sit. (they should run up-and-down on the post - so, like, 6" vertically, and flush with the post's sides). Use galvanized spiral nails or stainless screws (I would not use deck screws, they aren't designed to withstand large shear force) of a sufficiently-large size, and use as many as you can without starting to disintegrate the wood with too many perforations (predrill your holes) [​IMG]

    HTH,

    Pat
     
  9. purg3d

    purg3d Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 2, 2008
    VA
    Your responses are greatly appreciated. My thought process on using 4x4's was to provide the most support for a shingle roof, and save 2x4's for framing the roof. I ended up deciding to use some corrugated metal. All good suggestions.

    I 'completed' the trap door portion late one afternoon. Didn't think it through enough, and am afraid i won't be able to securely patch the 3/4" plywood floor as I covered the joist. Thinking I may just cover the hole with hardware cloth and build a roost there.

    Hanna has really put a damper on further progress, but I also completed the nesting box wall. Stands 4', with framing for two external nesting boxes 18"x24" and a 4" hardware cloth vent. running the width of the wall. The platform was painted with 2 layers of all purpose primer and leftover water-based paint. Still debating on linoleum.

    Cell phone pics, dark because of storm.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     

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