Help a new chicken owner - need coop for hot and cold weather!

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by ASD Dad, Mar 16, 2018.

  1. ASD Dad

    ASD Dad Chirping

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    Hello all - new chicken owner here! We currently have 6 chicks but may be getting 2-3 more from a friend who has too many chicks right now (she had to buy a certain amount to get the breed she really wanted). Chicks are 2 Cochin and 4 Laced Wyandotte if it makes a difference. The 2-3 more we could get are "Easter" chicks that lay the colored eggs?

    I live in Upstate SC so we get both extremes for weather - 100+ F in the summer and possible single digits in the winter! There are soooo many designs it gets overwhelming. I do not plan on letting them free range much, we have a lot of predators and wide open sky above with fields and woods close by. My run will be approx 40' x 30' if I put them where planned. The run will be on the backside of our detached 3 car garage/workshop that faces East. The coop I had planned on building on the South facing side of same garage. Garage is nearly two stories tall so will provide some shade. Plan was for morning sun and afternoon shade. House is to the West of garage so would provide afternoon shade to the coop. I will eventually post photos of location once I am allowed!

    Anyway - Are there designs I should be leaning towards or plans to avoid due to my temp issues? Any things that should be a "must have" on any design? My 8 yr old is the one that really wanted these so it needs to be sort of easy for him to take care of them and check eggs.

    I am pretty handy with wood and my father-in-law who lives next door was a Habitat for Humanity builder for over a couple decades so I feel like we can build most any design within reason. I can also weld up to 1/4" steel if necessary (due to my welders power output).

    Current basic plan is to have coop up off ground a little to help with moisture (clay soil!). Pressure treated wood with 1/2" hardware cloth windows. Plywood floor with FRP panels glued down to ease cleaning. That is as far as we have gotten!
     
  2. Meg-in-MT

    Meg-in-MT Free Ranging

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  3. ASD Dad

    ASD Dad Chirping

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    I was looking at the Woods coop for ventilation. Not sure it will fit in the planned space. I have plenty of room on property but trying to keep it semi close to the house in case I have to get power to the coop for some reason (would I really need it??) and to make it easier on my kids/us.
     
  4. Foster's Freehold

    Foster's Freehold Songster

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    There might be a time you need power. So having it closer is wise.

    You can pretty much build any style coop you want. The real thing you need to consider is ventilation. Lots and lots. A couple of windows or one roof panel of clear poly will let in some light to see around.

    As far as ventilation goes, always have lots. I live in south central KY, low winter temps, high summer temps and outrageous humidity. I'm going to put openable windows, put hardware cloth and 2x4 welded wire on two walls, then put plywood over those for winter. Figure your highest point in the coop and put some kind of ventilation there. For example, my plans call for a shed style roof. I'll be putting 6" x 3ft cuts in the plywood on the top of the high side, putting hinges on the cuts so I can close them if necessary. Doing the same thing on the bottom as the high side is the north face of the coop. The roosts will be on the south side of the coop, so air movement will not be over them as they roost. I'm also leaving room all around the top where the roof studs sit to just cover with wire for permanent ventilation. As the low side is the south, that side will heat first, the air will then flow up the inside of the roof and out of the high side.

    Hope this makes sense. Lots of others have pics, but as my coop is in the foundation stage, I don't. But that's the plan.
     
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  5. Howard E

    Howard E Crowing

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    Two Woods house sizes fit your needs. Smallest is 6' x 10'......good for up to a dozen birds, and 8' x 12', which could house as many as 24.

    Some cannot do a Woods as they lack the funds and/or basic building skills, like framing, roofing, etc. But you have the skills covered.

    Woods what I describe as the gold standard all others are to be measured against. Just saying.
     
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  6. Meg-in-MT

    Meg-in-MT Free Ranging

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    If you can get power to it, I would do it now instead of later. I don't care to deal with freezing water in the winter. Been there done that, and no more ;) It's also nice to have light when you need it.
     
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  7. ASD Dad

    ASD Dad Chirping

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    I was looking at my spot at lunch today and if I build a 6 x 10 Woods design the open end with mesh would face due South. I'd rather not flip it to North and it won't look right at all facing East. Can't face West. Any issues with it facing due South? The West side would be within 2 feet of garage wall.

    Thanks for all the help so quickly!
     
  8. Howard E

    Howard E Crowing

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    With a Woods house, open mesh side is supposed to face south. Technically a few degrees east of south.....yes it was that technical way back when.....so gives you some idea how much thought went into the Woods house........ but south will due!
     
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  9. Shadyfarms

    Shadyfarms Chirping

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    I live up in Canada. We get +40 Degree Celsius in the summer and -30 degrees in the winter. This coop stays warm in the winter and cool in the summer with no electricity. Key is it is a dirt floor that is below the outside soil level. This provides cooling in the summer + heating in the winter. It has 2 windows on the side the open/close + the entire back side has a slot that opens up in the summer. Front side soffits are just hardware cloth that is open year round for ventilation. Coop has full day sun and is insulated.
     

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  10. ASD Dad

    ASD Dad Chirping

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    Are there plans anywhere on the Woods house? I can downsize them but would love to find a 6 x 10 plan just so I can start planning this out cost and time wise.
     

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