1. clueless chic

    clueless chic Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 27, 2014
    NE Arkansas
    We currently have 5 chicks that we picked up this weekend...and we would like to get a few more. We were all set to buy a coop/run but then realized that the size we would need was out of our price range. Most coops online only hold about 4 chickens and have small runs, So my question is...does anyone have plans for a good sized affordable and most importantly EASY to build coop and run. [​IMG]
     
  2. Alaskan

    Alaskan The Frosted Flake

    You best bet for big and not much money... Is scrounge, and then make a plan after you know what you have.

    Ask at construction sites, look at the construction dump part of your town dump, find shipping pallets, look at your local craig's list, etc.
     
  3. TheEggCollecter

    TheEggCollecter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 16, 2014
    Massachusettes
    Check Craigslist or eBay for local people who build or have built a coop that suits your needs.
     
  4. sol2go

    sol2go Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 27, 2012
    Coastal California
    My favorite repurposed chicken coop/run is a metal framed gazebo, which is commonly sold at garden shops. They can also be found on-line for as little as $200 for a 10' x 10'. Or you may find someone who no longer wants the one they have. Note: this is not an EZ-up style that is portable.

    Lets just say if you have bears and mountain lions, or heavy snow loads, this might not work for you.

    Otherwise, you can work in phases so it grows with your flock. Initially you will need to secure it to the ground, and wrap the entire structure in a good wire product including the roof before you secure the fabric tent-top (some of the newer ones come with a solid roof surface). Lots of zip ties make it easy to adjust the wire as needed. Ultimately, the project will benefit from some plywood panels and wood framing in-fill for doors.

    When your flock is little, a dog house or any box inside the gazebo will provide a place to sleep. As they grow, it works well to add a shed-type coop attached to the perimeter of the gazebo (extending beyond the footprint of the gazebo). The coop can be one or two stories, and you may find it handy to add a coop to more than one side of the gazebo. Just cut away the wire and staple the wire to the new coop.

    When your coop is secure, the chickens can have free access to the gazebo, and you can access the coop from within the gazebo or from the outside. Food and water generally stay clean and dry within the gazebo, but you could locate them in a perimeter coop if preferred.

    Here's a few tips:
    Add corrugated plastic or metal to the roof if you have a weather problem (lighter than plywood and shingles).
    Add clear corrugated panels to the side walls to maintain light but reduce weather impacts.
    Reinforce the wire with a layer of vinyl lattice which will also create a garden friendly look.
    Treat the exterior walls as a trellis laced with chicken friendly plants.
    If possible set garden ties (6x6 or 8x8) in the ground to match the footprint of the gazebo and secure the gazebo. This will also help if your ground is uneven.
    Bury construction grade wire (or a couple of old box springs) within the footprint of the gazebo, and atleast 6 inches below grade (because the chickens will dig around in the dirt), to discourage predators that might want to dig their way in.

    There are sure to be other ways to make this work for you, but that's what I can offer =)
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2014
  5. clueless chic

    clueless chic Out Of The Brooder

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    7
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    Feb 27, 2014
    NE Arkansas
    Thank you for all the replies. We need all the help we can get. We are as my name states...clueless. But hopefully with the help of this website and all the knowledgeable people on it we can change that.
     

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