Newbie with a coop question....

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by WhiskyRiver, May 18, 2009.

  1. WhiskyRiver

    WhiskyRiver Hatching

    May 18, 2009
    Hi Everyone! [​IMG] First off, let me introduce myself. My name is Carrie & I am a married mom of 3 boys (7, 4 & 1- my baby just had his bday [​IMG]).

    We've decided that we'd like to raise some BYC's and are in the beginning stages of designing a coop/run. My hubby had an idea yesterday that I think would work, but figured it was in the best interest of our future family members to ask the experts! [​IMG]

    He has an stripped old truck cab that would be more than big enough for the 3-5 chickens we're planning on. It's a complete cab, with the doors and all the windows. I know that in the summertime we'd need to roll down the windows/put screens in or something to keep the heat down, but thought it could make an interesting/unique coop. So my question is...good idea? Bad idea? If a good idea, what would I need to do (besides adding nesting boxes obviously [​IMG] ) to make it a happy home?

    Thanks for your imput and I look forward to getting to know everyone here! [​IMG]

  2. Puck-Puck

    Puck-Puck Songster

    Now that's one I haven't heard! [​IMG]

    It will need to be vented all year round. Also, I don't know where you live, but vehicle interiors are real greenhouses so I would make sure this old truck is in the shade, at least in summer. (I know cars are greenhouses because the abandoned one next door, with the window rolled down, has a lilac branch growing into it and it's the only branch on the bush with any leaves, yet!)

    The chickies will need access to a run. Could this be through a hole in the floor, and the truck surrounded by the run? Is there room for them to roost on the dashboard? Or to avoid drafts, will the roost be low where the seat used to be? Your husband has written off this truck for any hope of refurbishing, hasn't he (if he hasn't, better re-think!) How easy is it going to be to clean this truck, with its irregular shapes?

    I'm not knocking the idea per se, but why not check the FAQs where I *think* there are the basic coop requirements listed, and you can see how the truck cab stacks up.
  3. flopshot

    flopshot Songster

    Feb 17, 2009
    i would cover or paint over the windshield to reduce solar gain. while you're at it paint the cab a light color or at least the roof. most pickups have a flat panel rear window that can easily be removed and replaced with a slider , fabricated ventilation panel or even used as a pop door location for a rear mounted run. for looks i would try to leave as much of the original detail as possible. i can see many cool designs for such a coop.
    Last edited: May 18, 2009
  4. WhiskyRiver

    WhiskyRiver Hatching

    May 18, 2009
    Thanks for the help! [​IMG] I think it would work out well, we've talked about drilling holes in the bottom for drainage & ventalation plus building some removable nesting boxes that when its time to clean out the coop, we could pull the boxes and then just hit the coop with a hose.

    I like the idea of lining the windshield with a reflective paint or something to help keep the interior cool, especially in the summer. The other windows I think we'll replace with some screen material but still have the windows open or rolled down so that in the winter or during storms, they can be closed We have a large size area around the cab (hubby says the cab is too heavy to move [​IMG] ) to use for a run and there's plenty of area in the cab itself to use for roosting, on the dash or I can even add something for more variety for them.

    I'll be sure & post pics when we get the area done! We're still in the discussion/planning stage so it may be awhile [​IMG]

    Please keep in touch if you have any other ideas or suggestions! Thx!
    Last edited: May 19, 2009

  5. oldchickenman

    oldchickenman Songster

    Oct 2, 2008
    Parsonsburg Md.
    hey why not hang a nest box where the back window is, ilike this i have and old van just gave me an idea.
  6. mechagrue

    mechagrue Songster

    May 18, 2009
    Deception Pass, WA
    The idea of a coop that can be hosed out makes me starry-eyed!

    I agree with the shade comment. Somewhere else on this board, someone mentioned that they live in a hot climate, and had ended up having to replace metal perches/nest boxes because the metal was getting far too hot for their chickens. If you live somewhere hot, the metal interior could really bake up on a summer afternoon!

    If it's not already in the shade, I think you could rig up a tarp as a sort of sun umbrella, to keep the coop out of direct sunlight.

    I'm a little unclear on what is meant by "cab." Is this the front part of the truck, with the driver and passenger seats? Or the thing that sits on the back of the truck bed?
  7. Dancing

    Dancing In the Brooder

    May 5, 2009
    Prescott, KS
    With how hot the inside of them can get, I wouldn't use it for a coop.

    But it would make a great play area for the kids!

  8. Well..first off.....[​IMG] from SW MO! [​IMG]
    Glad to have you joinin the ''chickenhood''
    ...and I did see a picture here one time on BYC of a coop made out of an old van??
    You might try to find out who made it ?? Tell us all where you live and what the climate will be like?? And be all means...send pics!! WE wanna see the coop of yours!! [​IMG]
  9. ducks4you

    ducks4you Songster

    Jan 20, 2009
    East Central Illinois
    Yes, welcome!! [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    Where do you live? You might want to go the Profile/Personal and let us know what part of the country you hail from. That will help a lot in any advice.

    BUT....I'm ALL FOR using what you've got!! [​IMG]

  10. chickens3

    chickens3 Songster

    May 5, 2009
    Eau Claire, Michigan
    Make sure you make the run long enough

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