In Which I relocate a very heavy Chicken Coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Prospector, May 14, 2010.

  1. Prospector

    Prospector Chillin' With My Peeps

    OK, so I badly overbuilt our coop, and it may be the end of me getting it to where it goes. The following story is cross-posted from a gardening forum I frequent ( ) :

    Came home from work to a light rain and hooked the trailer up to the Astro Van. Backed it up to the coop and raised the coop up using the car jacks. So far so good.

    Then the coop wouldn't coop-erate and go on the trailer right, but no worries, it sat on the beaver tail, and that would make it easier to offload. Besides, I only had to drive across the yard with it.

    Drove down to the other driveway, where the greenhouse is, and went around it, onto the lawn. Spun tires. Spun 'em s'more. Felt the van settle down into a groove. That means its time to do something different, so I went and got the Volvo (from hell).

    The Volvo (from hell) has a tow hook on the back of it, so I put a load strap around the coop, and attached it to the car. Figured I'd slide the coop off the back of the trailer, and then drag it to its final home.

    The Coop slid off the trailer, did a half-gainer, and landed upside down. No damage to coop or trailer, but the bottom of the coop has no shingles, and it wasn't in the right spot, so I figgered I better flip it over and put it where it belongs.

    Bear in mind the wind is blowing pretty good now and the rain is running off my ball cap so I can't see much.

    In order to flip over the coop, I have to get the trailer outta the way, but its still hooked to the van, which is still stuck in the mud. The trailer is a big tandem axle flatbed, not like I can just unhook it and roll it outta there.

    So with the right equipment (and cuss words) I got the van outta there, and moved the trailer about ten feet away using armstrong power. Then I got SWMBO to slip a cinderblock (CMU for the engineering crowd) under the coop while I rocked it. This made for a fulcrum that would result in an easier flip of the coop.

    Pushing as hard as I could, I could get the coop to roll on to the CMU, but not flip the rest of the way back onto its feet. SWMBO came and pushed with me, and with the both of us working we managed to get it back upright, without rolling over onto the Volvo (from hell) which woulda been really bad.

    With it back upright, I got into the Volvo (from hell) and dragged the coop as close to its final resting place as I dared, but it still has another 12 fet and a twist to go. If I try to drive that with the Volvo (from hell) I will end up in the creek, so I think I am wating for the ground to get a little more solid, and then I'll use the Astro Van as a bulldozer and push the coop into place. It should slide pretty well if I get it up onto a pair of 2X4 "skis." and put a "bumper" made out of a 2"X 10" on it.

    Just another day Chicken Ranching.

    Be careful out there, and do as I say, not as I do.​
  2. al6517

    al6517 Real Men can Cook

    May 13, 2008
    Sounds like a plan, you got it covered.

  3. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

    May 24, 2008
    Southeast Arkansas
    I have one like that I need moved, but I think it sounds like I don't need your help! [​IMG]
  4. ranchhand

    ranchhand Rest in Peace 1956-2011

    Aug 25, 2008
    Thanks for the giggles! [​IMG]
  5. The Chicken People

    The Chicken People Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2009
    Smithville, Mo
    I am patiently awaiting a nice sunny warm up and the neighbors skid loader to pick mine up and relocate it further from the house since winter is over!
  6. woodward farms

    woodward farms Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 15, 2007
    northwest indiana
    we demand pictures!!!!!!!!
  7. NewHomesteader

    NewHomesteader New Egg

    Mar 8, 2009
    Sauquoit, NY
    you convinced me to go to plan B before even trying plan A [​IMG] I've got a 4'x8' 5' tall very overbuilt coop. Having never done this before I used sheet rock screws ( I just like them). I'm going to pull the roof and walls off and move it in pieces this weekend. perfect timing... thanks for the great story!
  8. chickens_rock

    chickens_rock Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 29, 2010
    I think I know an easier way to move a coop... across the yard anyway - not across town. My husband and I moved our coop a long way across our yard and even up a small hill using this technique. This will work if you have a solid, sturdy frame around the bottom of your coop. With the help of a friend, you can have your coop moving in no time.

    You will need 3 pipes which are a foot or two longer than the narrowest width of your coop. Heavy walled PVC will work. Broom handles will work if they're long enough and if your yard is smooth enough, but I would recommend a pipe that's at least 2 or 3" round.

    Begin by jacking up one side of your coop enough to get the piece of pipe under it. You want the pipe to run parallel to your wall and in the direction that you want to push your coop. Just lay the pipe on the ground under your coop - a couple feet or more - depending on how far you were able to jack the coop up. The further underneath you can get it, the easier the next step will go. Now, go behind your coop and push until it begins to roll onto the pipe - it really is not as hard as it sounds. Once the coop has moved and the pipe has begun to move toward the center of the coop, put another pipe under the front coop edge and continue pushing. You now have 2 pipes under the coop and you can push it anywhere you want to go with incredible ease. As you continue pushing the first pipe will make its way toward the back of the coop, at this point you put your third pipe in front of the coop and continue pushing until the first pipe comes out the back. You now have 2 pipes under the coop again. You continue this process until you get your coop to its final spot, at which time you push it off one pipe, and you will have to keep it elevated to get the other pipe out from under it.

    Simple... and a whole lot of fun. A very basic moving technique for heavy objects that you will use again and again. Ever wonder how the Egyptians moved those heavy rocks up the pyramids??? This is one of their techniques. Good luck, and let us know how it goes.
  9. St-Hubert

    St-Hubert Chicken Convert

    Apr 6, 2010
    Anniston, AL
    The fact that your coop rolled over and caused no damage to itself....that is impressive! I don't think you overbuilt it, I think you built it just right. [​IMG]
    Thanks for the story!
  10. Prospector

    Prospector Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:I thought about this technique actually, but our property has some pretty good slope to it. the drop from where it was built to where it is now is about 15 feet. I woud hate to hold back th ecoop against that much gravity. In order to move it the last little bit, what you are suggesting may work. But really, its just as easy to put a couple pieces of lumber under there and move it with the van. This is not my first time relocating heavy stuff...

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