Coop design, construction options

Rodrad

In the Brooder
Nov 9, 2020
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Southern Indiana
I am in the stage of planning a chicken coop for about 10 chickens. Floor size is 4x7’. Plan to have it off ground by about 1-1.5’. The floor will be insulated with R13 bat. For the Top of the floor plan to use exterior plywood 1/2” or 5/8” on studs 16” apart, painted or possibly covered with vynil sheet. There will be a poop tray under the roosting perches. Nesting boxes, 2 or 3 will be attached on the outside wall. Life expectancy is about 15 years.
I have found free rough sawn pine planks 5/8”x5.5” of different length (4-5.5 ft). I plan to use jointer to make edges straight.
These are my questions:
- should I glue several planks to form a panel,
- or just use construction glue and thus connect them while attaching them to the 2x4 frame,
- should I prime and paint them on the outside and possible inside (to be less absorbing humid air, less chance to expand, possibly becoming loose or developing cracks),
- is regular construction studs (2x4) good enough for framing.
- plan two roosting perches, 4’ long 2x4, one set at about 15” above the floor and the other 10” higher and 10“ away from the lower one, is this good enough?

I would appreciate your comments/answers on the above questions.
 

black_cat

being chased by a chicken army
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May 21, 2020
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4x7 is about half the size you should have for 10 standard sized chickens. For roosts, you need at least 1 linear foot of roost space per chicken.
Regular 2x4s are great for framing.
 

Rodrad

In the Brooder
Nov 9, 2020
93
41
37
Southern Indiana
4x7 is about half the size you should have for 10 standard sized chickens. For roosts, you need at least 1 linear foot of roost space per chicken.
Regular 2x4s are great for framing.
Thanks for your input. I will use 2x4 for framing. One note, I plan to have 2 or even three nesting boxes on the outside wall. So that add about 3 ft2 area. I read many threads that the size of the floor, when chickens are only kept overnight in it, can be in the range of 2-4 ft2 per chicken. So at this time i am still thinking to go mid way, about 3 ft2 per chicken. Several my neighbors have about 2.4 ft2/chicken (just to stay overnight) and they were happy with such size.
 

black_cat

being chased by a chicken army
Premium Feather Member
May 21, 2020
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Thanks for your input. I will use 2x4 for framing. One note, I plan to have 2 or even three nesting boxes on the outside wall. So that add about 3 ft2 area. I read many threads that the size of the floor, when chickens are only kept overnight in it, can be in the range of 2-4 ft2 per chicken. So at this time i am still thinking to go mid way, about 3 ft2 per chicken. Several my neighbors have about 2.4 ft2/chicken (just to stay overnight) and they were happy with such size.
I think that you should definitely have at least 3 boxes. However, I don't think that they count toward the floor space, because chickens won't go in them aside from laying.

Are you getting all 10 chickens at once?

In my opinion, you should always have more space than you think you need, not less. I wouldn't go below 3.5 feet per bird inside the coop myself, and that is pushing it.

Do you plan to free range or have an enclosed run?
 

CluckerFamily

Crowing
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Feb 14, 2016
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I also don't think the nesting boxes count as the area of space in the coop. I have 16 hens/pullets and only 3 nesting boxes, I use to have 6 but they only used 3 so I removed the ones they didn't use.
Do you have an idea as to which breed(s) you are planning on getting? If chickens don't have enough space they will get bored. I have seen some horrible bored pecking injuries. You won't just lock the chickens in the coop at night, but possibly weather depending on where you are at, and if a predator won't leave the coop alone.
 

Rodrad

In the Brooder
Nov 9, 2020
93
41
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Southern Indiana
I think that you should definitely have at least 3 boxes. However, I don't think that they count toward the floor space, because chickens won't go in them aside from laying.

Are you getting all 10 chickens at once?

In my opinion, you should always have more space than you think you need, not less. I wouldn't go below 3.5 feet per bird inside the coop myself, and that is pushing it.

Do you plan to free range or have an enclosed run?
I get your point, so I may consider 3.5 ft2 per chicke. BTW, The 3 nesting boxes, about 4 ft2, if set on the floor would take away so much floor space, unless chickens could go above it.

Tell me how did you come to understand that a minimum should be 3.5 ft2 per chicken?
thanks
 

black_cat

being chased by a chicken army
Premium Feather Member
May 21, 2020
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I get your point, so I may consider 3.5 ft2 per chicke. BTW, The 3 nesting boxes, about 4 ft2, if set on the floor would take away so much floor space, unless chickens could go above it.

Tell me how did you come to understand that a minimum should be 3.5 ft2 per chicken?
thanks
Nesting boxes that are set outward from the coop along a wall, or nesting boxes that are high enough on the wall that chickens can comfortably go under them, will not take away from floor space.

The actual, more official 'minimum' is 5 square feet- me being at 3.5 is really pushing it. You can play with the rules a bit by changing around the breeds you get, if you have your food and water inside the coop or out, etc.
 

Cinnamon Roll

Chirping
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Aug 14, 2020
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I built something similar this summer, but I did make it 4’x10’ for ten chickens. I have some terrible winter weather though so I didn’t want them to be cramped.

With the pine boards, I would attach them one by one just in case you have to make alterations as you go. I also painted my coop inside and out. I’m not sure your roost bar plan won’t end up with pooped on chickens but there’s no harm in trying it. Roost bars are easy to remake in a different configuration.
 

CluckerFamily

Crowing
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Feb 14, 2016
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@Rodrad Where are you located? In Wisconsin, you need to plan for cold months but in Florida you need to plan more for the hot months. Ventilation is important. If we knew where you were located: which state or which country, we may be able to help a little more with the structure itself.
 

Rodrad

In the Brooder
Nov 9, 2020
93
41
37
Southern Indiana
@Rodrad Where are you located? In Wisconsin, you need to plan for cold months but in Florida you need to plan more for the hot months. Ventilation is important. If we knew where you were located: which state or which country, we may be able to help a little more with the structure itself.
I am located in southern Indiana, in Columbus.
I appreciate all inputs. Thank you.
 

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