1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Lean to Coop conversion designing help

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by RR1011, Dec 19, 2014.

  1. RR1011

    RR1011 Out Of The Brooder

    51
    5
    31
    Dec 16, 2014
    Ohio
    [​IMG]
    I have a couple of questions. Im planning on converting our lean to into a coop. Its metal siding on 2 sides, 1 side is obviously the old barn, and then as you can see an open side. Im trying to do this coop with as much salvageable stuff or as cheap as I can. I was planning to put plywood over the metal siding. Should I insulate in between? I have a large piece of carpet in my garage I was thinking about using for insulation between the plywood & metal siding. I dont want to encourage mice to nest in the walls either though.

    Im planning to build the lean to to stand alone so when we either tear down the barn or restore it, we wont have to bother the coop. I was thinking of using OSB to side the wall against the barn for now and then use smart siding for the front/ open side. Do you see any major flaws with my plans?
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    32,649
    5,405
    556
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    What is your climate? Adding your location to your profile really helps folks give better suggestions/answers.

    What geographical direction is the open end facing...North, South, East or West?
    Is the leanto water tight....no leaks?

    I wouldn't bother insulating precisely for the rodent reason and it's usually not necessary or beneficial except for metal siding in full summer sun.

    Ventilation might be needed to be added....or you could just cover the open end with some framing, a door and well attached 1/2 Hardware Cloth for an open air style coop.

    The OSB against the barn wall would protect that wood and give you material for attaching roosts and nests.
     
  3. RR1011

    RR1011 Out Of The Brooder

    51
    5
    31
    Dec 16, 2014
    Ohio
    Sorry, I thought my location was in my profile. Im in Ohio. The open end faces north. The lean to is water tight. I was worried about insulating because our winter was so rough last year, it got -20 with the wind chill. Mild winters like we've had this year dont worry me.

    I have atleast 3 windows I was going to add for light & ventilation. Ive seen a lot of coops with gable vents, figure Id throw one of those on. A door I may use has a screened opening. Ventilation is key with keeping bees in the winter as well so I get it. Ill be sure to make sure its well ventilated.

    Thanks so much for the help.
     
  4. RR1011

    RR1011 Out Of The Brooder

    51
    5
    31
    Dec 16, 2014
    Ohio
    I was reading that article on ventilation you have linked in your siggy. Have you seen any coops with an open wired side thats covered in the winter? Im open to leaving that side open in the summer and making some kind of attachable cover for the winter. I was going to attach the run along the length of the coop. I could wrap it around the front so the front of the coop would be enclosed with wire twice to make them extra safe at night? I worry about leaving a wall open at night. I was not going to fence my whole run with hardware cloth, only the bottom 3 ft. I was going to do the rest of the run with welded wire.

    We do have possums, raccoons, and I swear Ive seen a fox in our back field. Our yard is fenced with a 4' welded wire fence, but predators can dig right under it.

    I should I was going to add a stationary run and have a portable run to move around the yard when Im outside (which is a lot). So they shouldnt be in the coop much during the day.
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2014
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    32,649
    5,405
    556
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    I think that any opening in the coop should be covered with well attached 1/2 HC.
    Do search on Woods Open Air Coop.....one whole wall facing south is HC'd and the only opening all winter.
    I have a bunch of windows that are wide open all summer and closed in winter.....eaves are HC'd and open all year.

    There's lots of options and possibility, so some research to hit the high points of adequate space, roost and nest location, keeping coop dry and draft free and predator protection....everything else is open to creativity.

    Read as many threads as possible, then think things thru, in:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/f/9/coop-run-design-construction-maintenance
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/f/13/predators-and-pests
     
  6. Free Feather

    Free Feather Chillin' With My Peeps

    It would be nicer if the opening was facing South, I think. It has potential to be a good open-air coop. If I could start over, that would be what I would have. Many benefits.
     
  7. RR1011

    RR1011 Out Of The Brooder

    51
    5
    31
    Dec 16, 2014
    Ohio
    Thanks for the help! Ill keep reading.
     
  8. RR1011

    RR1011 Out Of The Brooder

    51
    5
    31
    Dec 16, 2014
    Ohio
    Ive been reading about this open air concept and loving it. I found a pdf of the woods open air poultry houses book. It shouldnt be too hard to take the south metal piece and throw it on the north side. Thanks so much aart, I hadnt come across it and totally looked over it when you first mentioned it.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2014
  9. Cope2013

    Cope2013 New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Dec 17, 2014
    Tennessee
    Ventilation, Sunlight and Temperature are the main things I had in mind while building my coop.

    I started my coop about 7 months ago I was in a similar situation that you have, a lean to connected to a shed with one end open but instead of metal sides it was vinyl siding. The lean to was just to store outdoor items, I wanted to build on a limited budget so I asked my cousins for the pallets they didn't need any more, tore them apart and used the planks for the exterior coverage. I closed the open side and made a door for each end for easy access.

    Also during the . hotter months the heat will linger in your coop so maximum ventilation will want to be acheived. I found a few vents that go in the crawl space of a house in my shed and will be adding them to the top portion of my coop during this spring to keep air flowing through.

    The basics of your coop look very usable but in most cases adding insulation to a coop is not a great idea. During the winter months it seems like a great idea to keep your babies warm but during the heat from the summer the metal will be gathering heat which will trap in the walls between the carpet and plywood. I'm not sure what is possible to do during -20degree weather as it is impossible to live in weather conditions that low. Although putting a roost ladder will keep your birds transferring body heat, maybe a few heat lamps would help survive the harsh winters.

    In the end its all worth building your coop especially looking to see the accomplishments
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    32,649
    5,405
    556
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Insulating a metal building, or any building in full sun, will help keep the summer heat gathered in the sheathing from moving into the building.

    You'll still want a ton of ventilation in summer....the more large, operable windows with good seals, the better.
    I like awning type windows(hinged at the top) because you can leave them open all summer except during the worst of windy rain storms.

    Look up user @JackE he has a really nice Woods Coop.

    2 things are vital in the Woods coop:
    -The proportion of width to depth of coop footprint.
    -The building must be air tight in winter except for the open side. Any other openings will allow flow thru of air, defeating the concept.
     
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by