Need help finishing coop top

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by chickenannie, Jul 20, 2008.

  1. chickenannie

    chickenannie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I got greenhouse type "hoops" for free. They are metal poles. I tied them together in the center of the top of the hoop and splayed them out to make a hexagon shape frame. Then I ran 3' chicken wire around the outside and used ties to attach it to the frame. My plan was to put a tarp across the top, but even with a little bit of wind, my tarp is blowing around like crazy and I'm realizing it will never stay on, plus it doesn't attach well to the chicken wire. (OK OK, I'm obviously not a carpenter!!).

    This is supposed to be a simple, temporary turkey pen that I can move and then disassemble after Thanksgiving.

    How do you keep a tarp pegged down on a light structure like this, or am I just asking for trouble? I have 3 concrete blocks in the center of the hexagon pen tied to the middle of the frame to keep it from blowing away since the metal hoops are just setting on the ground. Help!?
     
  2. MsBentleyboy

    MsBentleyboy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    any possible way to submit a photo. I can be pretty creative but I am a visual learner.
     
  3. chickenannie

    chickenannie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would put up a pic but my computer can't download my dig camera -- I have to get the pics developed.

    Here's a website (scroll down to second picture).
    http://silvanacrossing.com/

    See those metal hoops on the ground? Well, I just took 3 of them (much smaller ones) and instead of lining them up in a row like you would with a greenhouse structure, I formed a dome shape by tying the middle of the tops together, and then arranging the hoops in a circle (think geodesic dome shape).

    Does that help?
     
  4. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    I would say you probably can't do what you're wanting, to the degree of nonflappiness you are looking for. Your basic problem is that a tarp is a flat planar thing and your coop-thingie is a hemisphere. Try the exercise with a kleenex and a grapefruit and the problem is obvious - without building 'darts' into the cover, it cannot fit tightly.

    Can you cobble together a shelter inside of this coop thing, made of scrap plywood and 2x4's? That's really all I can think of. Well I suppose you could play dressmaker and try to pin and hand-sew actual darts into your tarp to make it fit the frame, but this would be insanely difficult unless you have twelve-foot-long arms and I have my doubts how quickly the sewn darts would just rip apart the tarp in the first good windstorm anyhow.

    or, perhaps you could invest in a couple cattle panels or even just some wide heavy-gauge wire-mesh fencing (even if it is like 2x4" mesh or larger, which you could run your chickenwire over top of) and reconfigure the greenhouse poles and the new fencing to make a tunnel-type structure. The security of a tarp bunged onto that will still be rather questionable, and be careful of the situation where a flapping tarp rips your pen apart!, but at least you would have a FLAT (hemi-cylinder) surface to put the tarp onto.

    Sorry, good luck,

    Pat
     
  5. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    Just a thought...you might put your tarp over the top then bring ropes from the corners out and tie them to pegs in the ground. Kinda like you would tie down a tent.
     
  6. Poulets De Cajun

    Poulets De Cajun Overrun With Chickens

    Take a look at this picture here.

    http://www.thecozynest.com/Housing/hoop_house2.jpg

    If you take the hoops, put on on each end and one in the middle, you should be able to get a nice skeleton to put a tarp over.

    However I would reccommend putting some wire over or under the tarp, to keep predators out.
     
  7. MsBentleyboy

    MsBentleyboy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Could you put some small post deep into the ground next to the poles? Tie the tarp to the posts instead of the poles. You may even need to add a large tall pole/board up the center to hold up the weight of it all?

    If the posts work you would have to reinforce the tarp to stay down next to the poles. Take sturdy string and go over the entire structure and tie to the same posts you put in the ground.

    Good luck! Maybe someone can come up with a better idea for you.
     
  8. chickenannie

    chickenannie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Poulets, I would love that coop! I should've mentioned that I'm going for cheap and free here, as much as possible because I'm determined that these turkeys are going to make a profit. There is so much "junk" lying in the barn buildings at this farm, I'm trying to scavenge and recycle.
    I'm willing to have something less than beautiful for that reason.
    MsBentley, I think I'm going to try your idea of crisscrossing the tarp a bunch of times with something like clothesline which is very strong, yet flexible.. That's a good idea. And I've got some very heavy concrete blocks I can lay on the corners of the tarp on the ground. It won't be beautiful that's for sure!! But it should be functional.

    Thanks everyone. I'm going to build the bestest coop someday in the future when I'm rich!
     
  9. dixygirl

    dixygirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Where can I get a few of these curved poles please?
     
  10. chickenannie

    chickenannie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I hope you can find some! I got them free from a farmer friend because they were slightly bent (the wind had torn his hoophouse apart one day and the poles bent when it hit the ground). They're not in perfect shape anymore that's for sure, but they'll be fine for what i need.
     

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