finalized plans need review, pre-build

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by gadus, Jun 9, 2016.

  1. gadus

    gadus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Knowing my procrastinative tendencies, I built an extra large (2' X 4' X 4") brooder for my 18 layers of different varieties, hoping they wouldn't get too big or too ootsy before I had time to complete the coop. Fortunately, aside from occasionally bumping their combs on the overhead netting, they seem okay with current digs-and could conceivably go on like they are for a while before the quarters would get too crowded or so it seems. But they all have their true feathers (they are between 6-7weeks old) and there's no denying that new digs are called for. And they're starting to stink up the place (we've got them inside where our 2-yr-old can amuse herself with them).

    At any rate, in two days, I'll have walls up on the new coop and they'll be in it in a week or two. The run will follow. I would just like to run what I have planned by some of you who have been at it awhile and see if there's anything missing.

    I've got a 5/8" Advantech floor on a 8' X 8" deck, pressure-treated, set on posts about 1.5' off the ground. It will be a 2x4-framed structure, with gable roof pitched about a 5/12. There will be a front door about 30" wide and on the adjoining right wall (opposite the entrance from the run) will be the five nest boxes, elevated slightly, plus a s**t chute immediately on the other side of the boxes. Boxes will be outside style and basically that whole wall will be eaten up by boxes and the egress for manure.
    Above the entrance (opposite side, left of door) will be one roost and directly opposite the door will be more roosting opportunities ,maybe 30" up or varying heights.

    I plan to ventilate the gable ends with conventional louvered pop-ins and provide two other doors, maybe one above the nest boxes and one opposite, above the roost, which can be swung and locked open when needed. There will be hardware cloth inside both of these.

    I've walked the run and it looks like about 70 linear feet of six foot chicken wire. I will be burying about 80' of 2' hardware cloth , about 18 inches down, around the whole perimeter, plus the two sides of the coop which are not contained by the chicken wire. I will be using a 2X4, pressure-treated framed structure to support the chicken wire and one section will be roofed over with something, not sure yet; they'll have that for rain cover plus they can always go under the house for protection Where there is no roof I plan to use deer fencing.

    My wife works/plays at home and therefore there is almost always someone here to watch over things.

    We plan to free-range them as soon as possible. To that end, we are converting some land to grass. We are really looking forward to the tick-protection I imagine they will provide...based on my observations of them in the brooder, I'm sure they'll be as good as they say the guinea fowl are at spotting and dispatching pests.

    Anyway, this is long and windy but I'm enjoying a glass of Malbec and the tongue wags a tad when thus stimulated. Any and all comments appreciated and welcomed.
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    You don't need to bury a 2' apron 18" down, it can go right on top of grass, or buried just a couple inches.
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1110498/wire-around-coop#post_17093528
     
  3. gadus

    gadus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My neighbor had a fox dig under his chicken pen and help himself to a meal. Not a scrap of underground wire. Seems to me that the deeper a wire can be buried, maybe with combined gravel, the more of an impediment to digging it will be. Alas-and hopefully I'm mistaken, it doesn't seem like there's do much with the above ground pen except be vigilant and/or get a rooster or put a hound on chicken detail.

    I don't want to over-engineer things (our childhood coop was a ****** hovel compared to the palaces I've seen on this site) but it seems the buried wire is one good investment to make. Will cost us $125-150 plus another $60 for the 6' chicken wire.

    I'm also wondering about my layout, specifically what's lacking.

    And off-topic:

    How many layers would you folks put comfortably in a 55 ft2 building?

    How are people integrating younger birds into mature flocks?

    How are roosters introduced?

    Many more questions but soon I'm going to finish the build and before I frame it up, I would love input on what's good, what's not.

    Thanks mucho.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    The point of an apron......(did you look at the link I posted?..... is for the mesh to go out 2 ft from bottom of coop/run wall.
    They start to dig at the base of wall and hit the mesh....move over try again, and hit the mesh...move over try again, hit the mesh..and give it up.
    They don't know to back up 2 feet and dig under the apron.

    The mesh apron doesn't need to be buried at all, grass will grow up thru it, or buried just deep enough for the mower not to hit it.
    Adding rocks, or pavers or chunks of wood is a waste of time and money.......
    ......and could defeat the purpose because they will try to dig under the edge of that, instead of right at the bottom of wall.
     
  5. gadus

    gadus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 28, 2015
    Maine
    I'll try the surface technique and if it doesn't deter them, I'll bury it; believe me, I was not looking forward to trenching and burying. Heavy gauge (galvanized after welding) wire I guess is the way to go, though quite pricey...do you know a supplier?

    Do you run regular chicken wire over everything else?
     
  6. ChickNanny13

    ChickNanny13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Don't forget the poop board under the roosts, it REALLY saves time & cuts down cleaning. Read about after DH built my Run/Coop, so we had to "add on" and it's a blessing!
     
  7. marcyflock

    marcyflock Out Of The Brooder

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    Buried wire here rusts and rots. I don't like chicken wire, to flimsy. I have a 1"X11/2" we
     
  8. marcyflock

    marcyflock Out Of The Brooder

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    Sorry phone has a mind of its own. I've used 1x1/2 in welded wire and it looks & holds up great. I've used small (1/2in I think) chicken wire for roof.
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. mommom97

    mommom97 Out Of The Brooder

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    I see some of you have built your own coops, I live in the Mojave Desert and we have strong winds more often than not. Can anyone recommend something that will help shelter them from the sand blow but not hold in the heat?
     

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