Planning our Pallet Coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by SGM, Jul 19, 2010.

  1. SGM

    SGM Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 18, 2008
    Easley, SC
    Hubby and I have seen many of the pallet coops and just love the idea! My goal for this coop is to get it done as CHEAPLY as possible. [​IMG] We've built many things for the chickens over the years and they've always been smaller and eventually just not big enough. This time I want to go all out. I want a large coop with plenty of room and lots of happy little layers.

    So here's the sketch...
    [​IMG]

    We breed goats, so the far right is the breeding shed for the goats. We raise our junior bucks in that pen on the off season. Where it says 'Bucks' is actually a holding area which occasionally serves as another breeding pen. The buck barn is just past that out of view. The whole thing will be sitting in the back yard.

    Now my problem is we often don't have enough pens for breeding goats so I figured when we build this, we could have a nice sized coop on the left, a walk way in the middle and on the right a covered lean-to to cover a section of the breeding pen. This way if we needed to separate the pen into two parts, we could have two breeding pens instead of one bigger on.

    I have a large 6' tall dog kennel which I plan to use as my run. We have a chain-link back yard so we plan to utilize the 4' fence on the back side too. There are 4 panels, 2 each 6' long and 12' long. So I was going to use one of the 12' sections as 'A' adjoining the fence. 'B' is the 6' section with the gate and 'C' is the other 12' section. We are debating on whether or not the other 6' panel would put us too close to the house if we used it as well in the run. However I'd like to. [​IMG]

    We're hoping to build the coop out of free or scrap wood as much as possible. We're getting ready to rip down our old back porch and if there's any salvageable 2x4s we plan to save them for the coop. We've already picked up a few pallets but are really having a hard time finding any. Most places outsource and have someone pick them up. So for starters we only have maybe a dozen and these aren't the ones with the close slats, they're more spaced out.

    We discussed two methods of doing this. One put up a shell frame like a stick built and put slat boards on the outside to cover it. Two would be to put the pallets up as the walls, floor and roof and cover with additional slat boards and the roof we hope will be metal.

    So that's the plan. The coop itself is planned to be 12' long running right up to the chain-link fence and spanning the same distance the 12' kennel panel takes up. Then about 8' deep. I have a metal 6 hole hen nest which we'll hang in the coop and put a trap door to check for eggs. I want everything to be at least 6' tall because I HATE having to bend over. Our old layer pen was completely rigged and you had to walk slumped over into it to get eggs. I swore if we ever did a layer run and coop again, it would be at least 6' tall so that's the plan. I will most likely cover the run with either chicken wire or welded 2x4 wire and probably cover with tarps to keep them semi-dry and shaded for now. I may even run some chicken wire around the base of the kennel panels to help with rats and snakes. We'll also have to fill the void on the fence which is only 4' tall. So we'll have to cover that with wire.

    So I guess I'm looking at some sheet metal for the roof, more pallets, floor covering and perhaps that small section of lenolum in the building can be patched up to cover the floor and keep it water tight. Hm... need to check into that. Anyway, wire to cover the roof and wire to cover along the fence which will be about 26' at least, maybe 32', screws and/or nails, some hinges and door latches. I think for now that's my quick list. I'll fix it when I really get a chance to work it out.

    I'd love to hear everyones suggestions or thoughts on our planned coop. I am so incredibly anixous to get started but we just lack the pallets and extra 2x4s to get going. Any thoughts where we could find a good stash of pallets?
     
  2. schellie69

    schellie69 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 8, 2009
    Kansas
    Hi, my DH and I used pallets to build our coop we got our pallets from the local newspaper, I would try companies that get things in on pallets. You can call local grocery stores or newspaper and see if you could have the pallets. We took our pallets apart and used the wood from them. I can find the post that I posted pictures of we re-used many different things and spent the money on the flooring that we wanted. If there are construction companies around you, you can call them and see if they have any wood left over that they are not going to use and see if you can have it. Also check craigslist and freecycle for building materials. Good luck,
     
  3. SGM

    SGM Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 18, 2008
    Easley, SC
    Thanks! We'd called over the weekend about an ad for free pallets and this morning he returned our call. I haven't called yet, just come in from feeding the goats. Maybe we can get the pallets he has plus some. [​IMG]

    I did a heck of a lot of searching on here before posting. Looking through tons of new coop threads, searched on pallet threads etc. So I may have seen yours.
     
  4. Jackie B.

    Jackie B. Paris Mtn. Eggs

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    May 13, 2010
    Greenville, SC
    Ashely, Look in the Greenville Craigslist. I was thinking about doing a pallet coop but lucked up on a tractor instead. A lot of times they're free if you haul so I don't know your car situation but that might work for you.

    Good luck! Can't wait to see your new chickens!
    -Jackie
     
  5. SGM

    SGM Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 18, 2008
    Easley, SC
    Thanks Jackie! We're going this evening to see some pallets and hopefully get those. There'd be more than enough to build our coop with and even some to start the new barn my hubby was talking about. So I sure hope we can work that out. We'll have to borrow a truck and trailer to get them.

    I actually have a chicken tractor that we don't want or need. We built it ourselves and its not something I use unless I have to. We built it out of plywood and painted it so its good for weathering. We need some new roofing material on it because the shingles always snap at the seam on the roof and break off. Its really needs is a good scrape out and some linoleum put in for ease of cleaning in the coop part. We'd planned to put a nest box part in it and that wasn't finished so we took to setting crates or pet carries in there as nest boxes. My other problem was it is hard to corner chickens in it if you have to get ahold of them. So we have to resort to a net to get ahold of them. We'd considered raising the roof on the run part so that if you had to go in you wouldn't be so low to the ground and could more easily catch chickens. I've thought about selling it or finishing it out how we'd really like it to be and then we wouldn't have to sell it. Just don't know yet.

    Anyway, hopefully this pallet lead will play out well. Sounds extremely promising! Fingers crossed!
     

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