1. JaceAgain

    JaceAgain Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok chicken gurus!
    Im looking for the cheapest possible housing, yet I want something I can walk in. I scratched out a plan and priced it out, and with cheap osb and 2x4's its already over 150 and thats not including flooring or roofing or siding! (4x4, 6' on one side slant to 5')
    So then I found this guy on home depot for 218-
    http://www.homedepot.com/p/Arrow-Newport-8-ft-x-6-ft-Steel-Shed-NP8667/100119313#specifications.
    Could I use that instead? I want to do the deep litter method. We'll have 6 chicks tops. I have 3/4 acre fenced in virtually predator free land. (Lots of free ranging planned). Winter usually has one or two days in the 30's and then stays in the 40's, but this season with the polar vortex had us in the teens a few days. Summers are hot and muggy, but I do plan on putting this next to the house so it will be in the shade for the hottest parts of the day.

    If so, how could I attach roosts? Can I screw through steel? Can I cut out sections for screening or do I need special tools? Do I have to put it on a base or is just having it on sand/ dirt and layering shavings ok?
    Any other comments, things im missing?
     
  2. cpegram

    cpegram Chillin' With My Peeps

    I would think the metal would be too hot for them in the summer....
     
  3. JaceAgain

    JaceAgain Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hah I thought this one didnt post, my browser glitched :) thank you!
     
  4. Trefoil

    Trefoil Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I believe they need some sort of foundation to be stable. And yes you could secure the roost to the metal, but again I think you would have to brace them with 2 x 4's. For your weather problem you could make a floor for it 2' off the ground and then use hardware cloth to fence in under the coop which would give them a shady place to go when needed. I don't think it would be too hard to cut, maybe a pair of metal shears or a grinder? It sounds like even after you made the alterations to make it what you want/need you're still going to end up on the good side for price. Whatever you decide please let us know how it works out.
     
  5. scali1971

    scali1971 Out Of The Brooder

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    you can build a 4 x 8 out of 2x4 and plywood for the house for about 125. Find new housing being built they always have a trash pile of a great selection of wood. I have never been turned down walking up and asking if I can take what I want from the pile. The throw out a lot of good wood
     
  6. Primo

    Primo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I wouldn't use one of these for a coop. (I made the mistake of putting one up for a shed years ago) You will have to severely modify for ventilation, you can not attach anything to the metal(too flimsy) You will probably spend more making it acceptable vs building one out of wood. Mine caved in as a result of the tremendous snow load we get here in Texas (sarcasm)
     
  7. JaceAgain

    JaceAgain Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Around here plywood is $22-30 a sheet, I'm looking at 5-7 sheets depending on the design. The 2x4's are 2.80 each, and for a basic box I'd need 21. I'd love to know how you came up with 125! :D
    I have to rent a truck, I cant really raid dumpsters and since Im rural, Ill be driving like 30 miles just to find one.

    I suck at foundation stuff haha. The reviews said they rust reallly fast, so I'm going to keep looking I think. Craigslist is failing me here too.

    Thank you!
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2014
  8. scali1971

    scali1971 Out Of The Brooder

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    5 to 7 sheets? How big are you making it? Lowes has 4 x8 thin plywood for $9, Its not treated so some barn paint cost $12 a gallon. You need 1 maybe 2 sheets depending on the size. The design I was referring to is 4 ft wide and 8 ft long, that's the coop and run which is fine for a few chickens especially if you let them out to range. I make these and sell them on craigslist so I am well aware of the cost. 10 2x4's will be plenty. some rabbit wire, hinges for the door and a nest and you are about done. Oh and something to secure the door. 5 to 7 sheets is a lot. I made an 8 x8 house 2 sheets on the floor then 4 around the sides and used the plastic clear panels on the roof that was about 300 by the time I was done but I used treated sheets on the side which were higher
     
  9. scali1971

    scali1971 Out Of The Brooder

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  10. Hokum Coco

    Hokum Coco Overrun With Chickens

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    Those sliding doors would be a curse in the winter the track would get clogged with litter and froze solid and you would be unable to open your doors.
    My Coop is a salvaged 4x8 metal shed here are a few tips and a quick look at my set up.
    I put on hinged ½" plywood outer doors
    My coop is insulated with 2" of styrofoam covered with a combination of ¼" plywood and veneer I got from interrior doors at Habitat for Humanity that I ran through my table saw.
    My floor are planks with a layer of tin for rodent proofing. On top of the tin I have a piece of vinyl flooring cut one foot longer than the length and width of my coop (roughly). Six inches squares are cut out of the 4 corners of the vinyl flooring. This allows the friction fitted flooring to travel up the walls six inches around the perimeter of my 4x8 salvaged metal coop. Shovel out the heavy stuff into a wheel barrow. Pop out the vinyl flooring hose it off pop it back in.
    Easy Peasy!

    Bedding
    I have used all types of litter for coops.

    I have not tried sand (sand gets good reviews on this site).

    Of all the things I tried to date wood pellets have been the best. (I tried wood pellets as a last resort when pine shavings were not available.) They are super absorbent and swell up and eventually turn to saw dust. The droppings just seem to vanish and turn to dust when it comes in contact with wood pellets .

    Replace my litter and clean my coop every October after I harvest my garden.


    Works for me in my deep litter method.

    I do add to pellets from time to time.

    I have anywhere from 10 to 15 birds housed in my 4x8 coop.

    Through the winter months the pellets froze harder than concrete with -40º temperatures. The poop froze before it could be absorbed by the pellets and there was like a crusty layer of poop in certain areas where they collectively took aim (no smell, messy feet or flies @ -40º). Come April things started to look after themselves.

    Nest boxes
    In my nest boxes I fold a feed bag to fit (nest boxes are 1 ft³). When a bag gets soiled; fold a new one; pop out the soiled; pop in the new.

    POOP BOARDS are the "BEST" addition yet. Handles well over ½ of the poop in my set up keeps ammonia smell in check 3½" below roost excellent for catching eggs laid through the night (roost are in cups for easier removal and cleaning). I recently friction fit a piece of vinyl flooring over my poop board.it makes clean up even easier; Pop out; Scrap; Hose; Pop in.

    Winter months even easier flex over compost bin DONE!

    Easy peasy!.

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    Last edited: Feb 27, 2014
    1 person likes this.

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