1. Christine21656

    Christine21656 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 26, 2010
    Oakdale, MN/Somerset, WI
    I am in the process of designing a coop. I just put my eggs in the incubator this morning [​IMG] I have a big concrete slab, and was planning on putting the coop up 18" or so, and having a 4x8 wide and 4' high coop. Would it be better to do it that way, or to use the concrete as the floor of the coop, and make it 8x4 wide and 8' tall?? I am trying to cut as little as possible, that's why I want to do 4' or 8' [​IMG]
     
  2. SillyChicken

    SillyChicken Overrun With Chickens

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    First question- how many eggs you got cookin? a 4x8 coop leaves enough room for 8-10 chickens (standards).

    If it were me, I'd use the slab, and build the biggest coop possible. You'll wish you did if you go with the small. I would suggest using treated lumber for the bottom plate.

    I went the small route 4x8 x 7hx 8h, and it's a bear to clean, and the birds get overcrowded quick if I let them raise any chicks. We used 7ft and 8ft, 2x's for walls.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2011
  3. Christine21656

    Christine21656 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 26, 2010
    Oakdale, MN/Somerset, WI
    So, you would just set the walls on the concrete, then? I can't have too many more than 8-10 anyway, since I live in the suburbs [​IMG] So that also means, no roosters, and no baby chicks [​IMG] I have 7 in the bator right now, but it's my first time I have ever incubated! My xbf and I got some chicks from the feed store last summer, but he lives in the country and is keeping them at his house. He gave me the eggs I have, and can take any roos I get. I'm not really sure what kind these are, but they will be some mixture of buff orpingtons, light brahmas, and white silkies! I hope I do it right, and they hatch!
     
  4. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    General answer in principle (but see below for your particular situation): because a concrete slab makes an excellent coop floor, but a lousy run floor unless you have serious rat issues or have no choice *but* to use the slab, I would normally vote for putting the coop directly down on the slab so the concrete is the coop floor. (You'll put bedding on it, of course). As long as that does not decrease the area you have available for a run. If your run space is very limited, probably better to get the extra area by raising the coop up and using the slab underneath it as part of the run space.

    HOWEVER.

    This only applies when the slab is the same size as the coop.

    I gather your slab is much larger than you will make the coop?

    Please be aware it can be hard -- real, real hard and not always successful no matter how hard you try -- to waterproof under the sills of a structure built on slab with extra slab sticking out the side. What happens is that when it rains, water pools on the slab and wants to run in under your walls. Your coop then gets real soggy every time it rains, which is Bad.

    There are special membranes or sealants you can use under the walls to try to prevent this. However, it's a tossup whether you will have them actually work for you.

    My advice is that if you cannot roof the WHOLE slab, it is really a lot better to raise the coop up and avoid this whole issue. This will also make a reach-in coop (as you are apparently planning) a lot easier to access, b/c you can do it standing up. Please mock up your coop with cardboard or something first, though, because 4x8 is awfully large to make a reach-in-only coop and you may find that the only way to reach objects (e.g. eggs, chickens) at the far side/corners of it is to lay on your face in the pooey bedding whcih many do not enjoy doing, so you may wish to smallen your dimensions up a bit [​IMG]

    Note that if you raise the coop up it will be tippier and catch the wind more (higher center of gravity) so unless it is in a very sheltered area and you don't get bad storms, think about how you will anchor it down.

    Good luck, have fun,

    Pat
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2011
  5. Stevo

    Stevo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Concrete is pourous. If you use it for the floor you will need to seal it. Also any lumber touching the concrete should be pressure treated so it wont rot.
     
  6. Mac in Wisco

    Mac in Wisco Antagonist

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    Just use the concrete. It'll be cheaper than building another floor above it and will be easier to clean and maintain in the long run. Use pressure treated lumber as the bottom plates and either power driven nails or concrete anchors to secure them to the slab.
     
  7. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Pat has a point about reaching into an 8 foot long coop (that you cannot walk into). I did that and couldn't catch my chickens to dust them. They would all run to the opposite end and huddle.

    Not fun at 11pm with Sevin dust in one hand, and a long pole in the other trying to get them out!
     
  8. jrudolph305

    jrudolph305 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you decide to put the coop on legs or blocks I would suggest a bit higher than 18". I had a large slab and built up about 18"-24" (on a slight slope). It is just a bit difficult to clean underneath. If you don't think you will ever have more than 8-10 hens I would stay in the 4' X 8' coop range and use the rest of the area for a run. That is why I put my coop up on blocks to give the girls that extra space underneath. I will try to post some pictures of my setup--I only have dial up at home and have to do pictures at work.
     
  9. Christine21656

    Christine21656 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 26, 2010
    Oakdale, MN/Somerset, WI
    Thanks for all the replies! I'd love to see pics jrudolph!
    I didn't think about the rain getting underneath, that would be a problem. 24" sounds like a better height off the ground, then. My plan that I have so far, is to have 2 of the walls just plain, no windows or doors. I will be able to get to the outside of them if I have to, but won't on a regular basis. The side facing the house will be the 4' side, and have a 2'x2' door, with the pvc pipe feeder, haven't figured out the waterer yet... and the nest box would be a community nest box-kitty litter type. Since exbf's chickens all lay in the same box [​IMG]. Then, the 8ft side would be where the run is... I'd put 2 windows in, and the pop door. But that whole wall will be on hinges, so it can be opened to clean, or if I need to get to them.
     
  10. flowerchild59

    flowerchild59 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a large coop on an old concrete slab and yes, water does get in when it rains heavily. It runs under the walls. We are going to try to trench an area to have a place for water to go away from the coop.
     

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