Help with tractor design?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by ShayBaby, Oct 3, 2013.

  1. ShayBaby

    ShayBaby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 4, 2013
    Lucasville, OH
    I'm attending a big swap next weekend and just know I'll come home with new birds. It's 3 times yearly and I've always come home with something (pig..dog..loads of chickens and ducks). When I've quarantined new birds before, I've kept them in a dog kennel away from the coop, but it's not a particularly humane way to go about it, so I'd like to build a contraption that will be a quarantine area/tractor/grow-out area (whichever it is needed for at the time). This using only the VERY limited spare parts I have lying around, because we don't have a truck to be able to pick up new lumber,etc. I'm working with very few leftover 2x4s, 5 or 6 pieces of plywood that have been cut into smaller rectangles (roughly 18"x3'?), 1 long piece of tin roofing, and some hardware cloth.
    I'm basing this around the piece of tin roofing because I'd rather not cut it if it can be avoided. I didn't measure exactly, but it's probably 3' wide by 12' long, roughly.
    This might be easier if I was making one long run, but I'd like to separate this thing into 2 or 3 sections, to house different birds/groups of birds separately.
    Still following? Have a cookie.
    I've got a design for a basic rectangular tractor, using the whole tin piece for the roof with a 4 or 5 inch overhang on all sides.
    (Very) Rough sketch:
    [​IMG]
    The part that's confusing me is how to open it to easily access the birds whether they're in the "run" area or the shelter area. My tired brain is probably overlooking some obvious solution, which is where you wonderful folks come in..hopefully? :p
    I thought I'd just hinge on the tin somehow so I could open the roof, but if has multiple compartments, what's to stop the birds in the other sections from hopping right out when it's lifted. I could cut the tin into sections and hinge the roof, but that, of course, means cutting it which I'd really rather not do, and making it a bit less waterproof. Then I thought of making a door to the shelter, like a rabbit hutch, but I wouldn't be able to reach them in the run, and vice versa. There might be some way I can make the whole front, fence and shelter simultaneously, pull up or down, but I'm not sure I have enough lumber to make extra frames for the "doors". This probably doesn't make sense at all. Did I mention I'm tired? lol.
    I'd love this to be mobile so the chickydoos can have fresh grass now and then, but being 12' long or so, I'm guessing it's going to be quite heavy and probably not manually movable, wheels or no wheels..? And we don't have equipment, other than maybe a dolly, to move it otherwise, so I might have to settle for it being immobile..
    Anyways, thoughts on how to open the durn thing up are much appreciated! :cool:
    You read all of that? Bless your heart. Have another cookie. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2013
  2. ShayBaby

    ShayBaby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Didn't figure I'd get any responses after that novel lol, but here's one idea I thought of.. Hard to tell from my chicken scratches, but basically some panels of plywood that cover half of one side and are hinged to lift up or down. Hopefully I have enough spare wood. :fl
    [​IMG]
     
  3. jsawler

    jsawler Out Of The Brooder

    a design that is around hereis taking your full sheet of steel roofing;bending it into a barn style roof, then adding sides,walls, and a small run on the side of it. just a thought.....
     
  4. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    Quote: Lumber companies will deliver
     
  5. yogifink

    yogifink Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Coop
    Sounds to me like your making a pollyface chicken tractor <-- google it.

    Consider making it 12 feet long and double the width of one metal roofing material, so somthing like 72" wide. This way you can use a whole piece of metal. The half covered with metal you could hinge and the other half you could make your compartments and cover with plywood or something.
     
  6. ShayBaby

    ShayBaby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Lucasville, OH
    Thanks for the suggestions, folks. Good ideas.

    That would be convenient, but the cheapest quote we found to deliver to our location was an extra 90 bucks. Not worth it at all.
     

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