Our Coop Trials & Tribulations..

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by father-clucker, Jul 15, 2010.

  1. father-clucker

    father-clucker Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 12, 2010
    Southern California
    Hi all..

    Still working on the coop and run but am getting close.. Had a few questions a bit down the line here after some of the pics.. Let me know if you notice anything that I'm overlooking please! Please disregard the nature of the yard (or lack thereof..) we did a remodel 2 years ago and the backyard has been a disaster ever since..

    Here's one showing the main structure of the coop and run.. The coop is on the left side and is unpainted in this pic.
    There are two levels - the top level (taller portion) is for the birds and beneath that is for storage with doors. The
    birds can roam around underneath if they like.
    [​IMG]

    Here's another photo showing the coop structure
    [​IMG]

    So.. One of my next tasks is to work on the roof.. and I'm trying to figure out the best sort of roof structure that is fairly sturdy and can have a plywood roof installed (with asphalt shingles) to provide rain & heat protection for the entire coop/run. Here's one I found on the Internet that is likely overkill:
    [​IMG]

    What sort of roof do you all use for your coops? I could also follow the style that uses a ridge beam and just uses a particular angle to get the rafters to the desired slope. Any suggestions?

    Also, in the last (evening) picture, you can see where easy clean doors are to be installed on both sides of the coop area since it's ~4.5' wide.. I was pondering whether I should install a mini wall on both sides and then install a door in it. However, in doing that I would not be able to just sweep stuff out of the coop when it's time to clean.. However, I'm planning on using the deep litter method and perhaps the mini-wall is the best approach?? Any suggestions?
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2010
  2. ScaredOfShadows

    ScaredOfShadows Chillin' With My Peeps

    its looking good! I wish i had the patience and skill to actually do a solid framing myself and everything. I'm better at throwing stuff together on a pre-existing frame and being creative with something to look at, and not starting from scratch - even with plans....lol.

    Looks great! keep us updated
     
  3. father-clucker

    father-clucker Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 12, 2010
    Southern California
    Thanks! I'm fine with building walls and whatnot but I'll admit that I'm at the point where my 'vision' is not particularly great anymore and I spend a fair amount of time trying to envision how things should be done -- just standing there staring at it! [​IMG]

    I will admit that until I wrote this post I had forgotten about the deep litter method I was planning on using so I probably do want access doors for cleanout that are high enough to not let the deep litter out IF someone were to open the side doors -- perhaps raise those cleaning doors to ~8-10" off the floor of the coop..
     
  4. rainierlass

    rainierlass Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 1, 2010
    Eatonville,WA
    Your coop looks a lot like mine - I have one end that is a large cleaning door and I contemplated having the bottom above the floor but now am glad I didn't - this way I can park the wheelbarrow right next to the coop under the door and slide the shavings right out - granted a few do fall and I have worn a few now and again but I think these negatives are so minimal compared to the ease of clean out - you could always lay a backing board along the inside if you were bugged by it - - I am using the deep litter method and have not done a total clean yet since March - (and just to say - - NO smell at all - I have a poop board with DE in it) - - but when I do it will be easy!

    Love the green by the way - it is going to look nice - - I wish I would have thought to put a storage area in there like you did - hmmmm maybe I still can! Altho I like to hang the feeder under there and it is just the right height.....

    here is a pic of mine - you can see the large cleaning door under the sign - I have another long one on the run side (on the right under the window) so as I can reach all areas of the coop from outside - - it is 6' X 4' and has large windows on 3 sides - - -

    I demolished the internal nest boxes and have since added them on the outside as my 9 chooks were needing more floor space - - they like to jump down off the roost in the morning and with nest boxes on the floor inside they just didn't have enough room to do that comfortably - let's just say I heard all about it from them - worry worry worry!!

    My roof is the corrugated plastic down to a gutter in the back - the slant is 8' in front and 6' in back - I am planning on adding a barrel to catch the rain water and have it rigged up to a nipple watering system - just haven't gotten there yet! Always somethin........

    Have fun and remember ........"it's just a chicken coop - chickens won't care" - - that was what I had to keep saying as my perfectionist brother and I were building it ~[​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    from the back:

    [​IMG]
     
  5. father-clucker

    father-clucker Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 12, 2010
    Southern California
    Thanks for the ideas RainierLass!

    One question.. For the cleanout doors -- I'm assuming I would still need a frame to attach the plywood to on the inside but sans the bottom 2x4 (or 2x3 in my case) -- correct? I can't tell from looking at the pics (an inside pic would be great if you've got one) -- I'm thinking of framing in a shape similar to an "H" with no bottom..

    Thx!
     
  6. father-clucker

    father-clucker Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 12, 2010
    Southern California
    Ok.. More progress this weekend.. Running out of steam for now and lack of inspiration.. [​IMG]

    This first new pic shows the raised platform that will be for the 4 nest boxes. I raised it about 8" off the bottom of the floor since we're going to use the deep litter method. The nest boxes will be #5 Stanley stackable storage boxes we found while perusing the local Lowe's. On the left edge of the picture you can see one of the flip-down cleanout doors -- one on each side. We installed a couple of 2x3's on the inside of the door (see visible screws on pic below) to help control the bow of the 1/2" plywood. A large storage compartment is below the coop in this photo.

    [​IMG]

    This next photo shows the same flip down cleanout door opened for your reference:
    [​IMG]

    This next photo shows the painted nest box platform with plywood scraps installed so we didn't have to buy yet another sheet of plywood. This platform will be covered with linoleum eventually. I also installed a mid-span brace below the coop to provide some sag-relief to the long 4+' span.
    [​IMG]

    Now.. This next photo shows the back side of the coop looking through the other flip-down cleanout door..

    [​IMG]
    The last thing I was working on was a false wall on the far right (next to the nail gun in the photo) to work as yet another cleanout -- this time for the roost bar which will be mounted above it a bit.. I was thinking about making a contained box just below the roost bar with something like a wire-mesh top to keep them out of it and a drawer (or shelf) of sorts that could be removed on a regular basis for poop removal. I guess I could simplify things a bit and just use the side doors for the cleanout process and install a removable piece of plywood to ensure the bedding doesn't escape when the door is opened.. Perhaps that's better?

    However, I'm lacking a bit of inspiration on this part and have decided to mull things over a bit before proceeding.. Any suggestions/ideas would be greatly appreciated at this point.. I feel like we're in the 80% done range (no roof yet) but steam is running out..
     
  7. NevadaRon

    NevadaRon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 28, 2010
    Dayton
    For the roof I suggest you keep it simple! Just make one side a little higher than the other, put 2x4s across it, plywood and cover with shingles or whatever. I used corrugated plastic roofing. Easy! In your case, I would make the low side the side toward the brick wall - that way the water will run off that direction. Here's a pic of mine to give you an idea:

    [​IMG]
     
  8. JanetSmithery

    JanetSmithery Out Of The Brooder

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    May 11, 2010
    Eugene, OR
    Your double-decker storage/coop idea is *genius!* Next time I build a coop, I'll definitely be incorporating that feature!
     
  9. birdicus7

    birdicus7 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 17, 2010
    Coatesville, PA
    Excellent job on the coop! You're definitely on the right track. I would check into Fiberglass Reinforced Panels for the roof. I just ordered some for mine, they were available in green, white, and clear. All are translucent and allow a little extra light. Cost is about $35 for a 28" wide by 12 foot panel. Try a google search for Sequentia roof panels.... Good luck!!!
     
  10. father-clucker

    father-clucker Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 12, 2010
    Southern California
    We have those panels at the local Lowe's but they didn't look all that great and only came in an odd shade of red, white and a barfy brown color.. I was reading up on mites this morning and saw a note indicating they can get under roofing felt and now I'm a bit concerned about using roofing felt and the whole plywood/felt/shingle direction..

    On that thought.. Should the birds really have it be dark in the coop at night? If we get these fiberglas (or equiv) sheets that are somewhat translucent will that wake them up earlier? I guess I could put a sheet of plywood over the coop area instead of giving them a skylight of sorts.. Ideas?

    By the way.. I'm planning on caulking all seams within the coop to ensure no easy hiding spaces for any mites or other bugs.. Anyone else do that?
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2010

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