Gap over door? Extending door? Suggestions, please

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by potato chip, Jun 4, 2016.

  1. potato chip

    potato chip lunch-sharer

    I am converting a child's cubby into (another) chicken house. It has no door and I want to add one. I'm just using marine plywood....

    The difference in cost between a 122cm sheet and 244cm sheet is quite a bit and I don't have any immediate need for the offcuts though they would be useful for "something".

    If I were to use the smaller sheet, I'd be left with a gap of about 15cm in the doorway. Options would be to leave it open, or extend the door with more ply or something else (lattice? Something else to allow airflow?)

    I'm in a low predator area. No raccoons, no foxes, just domestic type animals around here. The house will be enclosed in a run, so nobody will (should) be able to get to the door, anyway. I don't close the pop door on my other house, which is also inside an enclosed run, but this is a people-sized door, as I want to be able shut out wind/rain in winter.

    Does anybody have any good ideas as to how I could get away with using the cheaper, too-short, sheet? Would leaving a large gap at the top of the door be an issue? Any ideas or feedback would be gratefully received.
     
  2. Howard E

    Howard E Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So for the metrically challenged, you want to use a half sheet (4 feet) of plywood but are coming up 6 inches short of filling the doorway? That almost seems to be enough of a gap to tempt an ambitious chick to try it? (and maybe make it)

    Is there something less expensive than marine plywood that would work as well?

    Get creative with a framing hammer to nail some lumber in to fill the gap?
     
  3. potato chip

    potato chip lunch-sharer

    Possibly if I put my "silly chooks" in there, but my isa browns who I intend going in wouldn't. They came to me with their wings clipped, and they aren't terribly clever. I don't think they'd notice....
    Quote:
    I can't think of anything. Standard ply wouldn't last long I don't think, so it'd be a false economy. Masonite would need framing and by the time I got the frame, it wouldn't be cheaper (assuming it is, I haven't looked at it).

    If I filled the gap in the doorway, I'd have to stoop (more) to get in.
     
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    How wide is the door? Will you get enough cut-off to use that at the top?

    When your ISA Browns molt, their new feathers will not be clipped.

    Not trying to get too personal, but how tall are you? You would have to stoop to get through a 4’ door but not (much) a 4’-6” door? You don’t have to answer that. :oops:

    In Perth your record low was -0.7 C (31 F) on June 17, 2006. That’s not cold enough to bother an adult chicken. Chicks over 5 weeks old can probably handle that. I would not worry much about keeping wind out but I can understand keeping rain out. Your record high was 44.5 C (112 F) in February of 1997. I’d worry a lot more about ventilation in your summer than your winter weather.

    Maybe if you could show a photo of that doorway we could come up with something.
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2016
  5. Howard E

    Howard E Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Still not sure you will need marine plywood for this project. I actually have about 20 or 30 sheets of marine plywood I'm using for a boating project, so know a thing or two about it. The stuff I have is Meranti (Hydrotec) and Okoume and I would never consider using ether of those on a chicken house. Too expensive and not needed at all.

    What I would use instead is simply exterior grade plywood. As long as the glues used are exterior grade, you should not have a problem. The main difference between marine grade and exterior grade (aside from type of wood used) is the number of plys and lack of voids on the surface and interior ply layers. But if you paint it, you should not have a problem, and even more so if you go to the better grades of exterior, which in the US would be shown as ACX or BC. Either of those should have a clear face you can use on the exterior side.

    Interesting that the better plywood we used to have in the US was made of fir. I can no longer find that. The better stuff now has a surface layer of Radiata Pine, which ironically, comes from "down under".
     
  6. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

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    Fill the gap at the bottom so its a stepover. It will help keep bedding in if nothing else.
     
  7. potato chip

    potato chip lunch-sharer

    I suspect that what they sell as marine is what you call exterior grade..... It's not that great, it's just what they call it at the local hardware. I'll have another look and see what else they might have. I tend to just go for "something good" because then you aren't having to replace it.

    If I got cheaper grade and then had to paint it, I'd just be adding back the cost I'm trying to avoid. I'm not going to paint the rest of it. It's quite weathered, but it's still standing.

    Thanks for the idea, there's already a timber at the bottom of the doorway, I could put a (removable) restraint there, I suppose. I'll give it some thought.
     
  8. potato chip

    potato chip lunch-sharer

  9. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

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    I'm glad we could help. :)
     

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