Coupe Floor - and REMODEL!!!


In the Brooder
Jul 5, 2016
Nevada City, CA
We have a raised coupe - currently there is rigid wire on top of the 2x4's. Then we secured cardboard (don't laugh!!!) to the underside of the 2x4's for the winter
Of course it is all now a falling apart mess

What if we created (using press board) 4 or 6 trap doors on the underside with hinges and latches - removed the wire mesh and filled the space (probably 6 to 8 inches deep) with shavings.

then when we need to clean it we just pull up the wheel barrow open the hatch and DONE!!! (this will be added to our compost pile!!)

AND can we use a mix of shredded newspaper??
Could you post a picture of your coop? It would help to see what you're working with.

Some thoughts...

I think multiple trap doors and the associated latches and hinges would be a pain. I'm thinking that the coop is a smaller coop??? Is there a large access door to the coop? If so, then I would cut some plywood pieces to fit inside the coop on top of the 2x4 floor joists and cover this with some cheap/scrap linoleum rug, rubber roofing, etc., and put the litter on top of this. Pull a wheelbarrow up to the side of the coop below the opened door and drag the litter out with a rake or hoe into it.

If you are thinking about using the space between the floor joists to hold the litter I would think there could be issues with moisture affecting the wood. BUT, if that's what you want to try doing (so as to not use space/headroom above the joists) then I would simply use a single trap door hinged from one side. Pull the wheelbarrow under the coop, unlatch the door so that the edge of the door rests against the wheelbarrow so that it acts like a chute for the litter to go down. Maybe attach a rope or chain to keep the door/chute from dropping too far down. The amount of litter might surpass the capacity of the wheelbarrow so you would have to figure that out. I would be sure and paint the floor joists and the trap door/floor...and install some of the linoleum rug on the trap door.

Best wishes,
Thanks Ed!!

When I got home I started to think wood on top of the2x4 and I did see a coupe with tar which I like too
Ill grab a pic later-- it is a small coupe and by small I mean not tall too.
Don't hold back with ideas - i truly believe we need help-- we built in a rush last year, and lets leave it at that...
If the coop is short then headroom is an issue to be concerned about. I don't have much of an idea of what your coop looks like (pictures help...hint...hint
) but you may be able to raise the roof a bit. You could incorporate some added ventilation if you need to. By removing the roof (this is where having used screws can be nice) you could scab on some upright 2x4's to the corner posts/poles thus extending the roofline. Set the roof back on top and secure. The gap between the old wall and the roof could be filled with wood or hardware cloth or both. By raising the roof you could put the flooring on top of the floor joists and have a deep layer of litter without losing head space for the chickens. I would make it a little taller than planned and with extra ventilation at the top for good ventilation that will be over the chickens' heads thus keeping them out of a draft during the winter. Remember, they need approximately 1 square foot per chicken of ventilation.

By the way, if you didn't build with screws then you would need to address the roof removal differently. But, that can be done, too. I won't go into all that unless you decide to raise the roof and need some ideas on it.

I think you're talking about the BlackJack roofing tar that some people coat the flooring with. They speak well of sure to get it down into the cracks and crevices good. It would be good if you could paint the plywood edges good before installing it into the coop.

If you decide to try a single trapdoor on the bottom position the hinges so that the door swings downward parallel with the floor joists. This will help all the spaces between the floor joistsl to empty out rather than having one space that doesn't have much room between the bottom of the joists and the opened trap door, thus making it harder for the litter to fall out of it. Does that make sense?

How tall is the inside of your coop? What's the floor dimensions?

Btw, shredded newspaper should work fine ,if used sparingly. Once wet it tends to mat down pretty good. As long as it's mixed well with wood chips, dried leaves, dried garden waste, etc., and not over-used then it should be ok. There have been recommendations in the past not to use color pages but they should be safe to use...back in the day of lead typeset and toxic inks it was indeed a problem. I believe the industry has cleaned up this bit of pollution courtesy of the EPA implementing guidelines that prohibit heavy metals. Plus, using the shredded paper sparingly there really isn't a reason to risk colored paper if you don't want to.

Best wishes,

Will be getting to the pics in a bit - thanks for the space requirements - we are thinking to build it big enough to have no more than 30 birds - is that too much?
we want them for meat mostly and have 2 Brahmas (plus Stud) but thru breeding the generations of other breeds we hope to get more

We were just talking about the ventilation issue- more of a problem in the heat than winter (we live in nevada city ca - about 3300 feet - we do get snow but it is irregular)

Yes we did use screws - Hubby just said he would prefer to do a two story coupe so not to raise the roof??? Doing stuff as a team can be so much fun!!! (better than both or our past marriages - there were no teams there)

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