How much snow can a tarp hold?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by theacw, Nov 19, 2012.

  1. theacw

    theacw Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would love to have a dry run through the winter. I am just a young girl who isnt capable of adding a roof of some sort so the best I can think of is to add a tarp to it. How much snow can a tarp handle?

    I live in MN so we get a decent amount. The run is 10x10 and is covered with chicken wire. No other wood, just chicken wire run across the whole thing, kinda loosely.

    Would it be strong enough to hold a good foot or so of snow?

    Thank you!
     
  2. Y N dottes

    Y N dottes Chillin' With My Peeps

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    well, tarps come in different thicknesses and strengths, but a good tear-resistant tarp can hold a foot of snow easily i think.
    also, if u can fix in a way where the snow could slide off, u might not have to worry as much about the amount of snow
     
  3. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Overrun With Chickens

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    Quote: I wouldn't count on it to hold that much.

    I'd lay some 2 x 4's across the top and cover it with metal or plywood for that kind of load
     
  4. Sally8

    Sally8 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    LOL. This makes me laugh. We have a coop attached to a 10 x 12 dog kennel. 6 ft tall. Very rugged. We had a blue tarp, prob not very expensive and zip stripped it all over the top. We live in central NYS, no where near the city but not in the mountains. Last year we had a couple of snow storms that produced heavy snow. It crinkled my dog fence right up like it was aluminum foil. You will need to find a way to angle the tarp that will allow the snow to slip off. We haven't replaced ours yet but need to. We didn't know whether to laugh or cry. Also, keep in mind that rain collects and pools on the tarp. Several times I went out with a knife and went around stabbing the tarp to allow the water a way out. That also buckled our fence and I got soaked. Good luck. :D
    Sorry, had to edit to correct my Misspelled words.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2012
  5. Rustywreck

    Rustywreck Chillin' With My Peeps

    Could you put a center post, like a 4x4 in the center of your run? Make it two or three feet taller than the side so the snow will have a chance to slide off.
    Otherwise get a roof rake and rake the snow off the tarp every time it snows, more often during storms.
    Tarps can work great, but they need the right kind of support. Sagging will be your enemy.
     
  6. RaspyRoosterFarms

    RaspyRoosterFarms Out Of The Brooder

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    You would need to cut 2 liter pop bottles and put them on top of the posts upside down so the posts won't rip through your tarp. I had my first coop set up like that with the tarp stretched tight. The snow always slid off and if I got a build up I would just grab a broom and pull it down. The post from RustyWreck above is how I had mine set up. Just with the posts on one side up against the fence. for better support.
     
  7. CluckyCharms

    CluckyCharms Chillin' With My Peeps

    "I am just a young girl who isnt capable of adding a roof of some sort"


    I wouldn't discount yourself simply because you're young and female. I don't know your exact age and you're not allowed to tell us.

    That being said - I don't know what schools are like these days because we don't have kids, but in my school days, both the junior high and high school locations had excellent shop teachers and an on-location woodworking shop filled with all the tools necessary to make almost anything. There are many schools that have woodworking class projects (large projects) throughout the year. I remember one year we built an entire fenceline around a community member's 5 acres of land. The year following it was an actual mini-barn for another community member when theirs burnt down. Many times these projects don't cost anything to the lucky recipient but are used as a learning tool for the kids who build them. It couldn't hurt to ask if you could possibly make the "coop of your dreams" a class project and get everyone involved. It would be much more than a coop that way, and a tangible memoir for years to come for you.

    Either that ..or I would possibly speak with your parents about your chickens' housing area and explain to them that it's not really up to par in regard to protection from the elements. Perhaps they'd be willing to help you get the necessary wood (many places give away shipping pallets for free actually, and you can build a lot of nice things with those). You could still ask the shop teachers in your area if you would be able to access their help and tools (mainly the neat machinery, haha) as well. If you have parental supervision, plus their supervision, there's not many things more special to a woodworker than someone taking an interest in their craft.

    It could also be a worthwhile project for you to do with a couple of close friends with some free shipping pallets, a hammer and nails. Structures generally last a long time and it would be a nice building for you to talk about 10 years from now when people ask you if you did anything interesting in school.

    Just a couple of suggestions that even a "young girl" is perfectly capable of doing. =)
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2012
  8. Sally8

    Sally8 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Again, age being a factor, but our Craigslist is always full of things that are free if you had a way to go get them. A tarp will work fine and if you check on line, it gives you a lot of ideas. Wish you lived closer.
     
  9. Sally8

    Sally8 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We got 9 1/2 in of snow a couple of days ago. 3 times during the storm we went out with a broom and swept them off. I was happy with the results anyway. I used the inverted 2 liter soda bottles on top of the sticks I used so it wouldn't rip through the tarp[​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  10. RaspyRoosterFarms

    RaspyRoosterFarms Out Of The Brooder

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    Looks really nice. Glad it worked out for you. :)
     

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