Please help us convert this shed to a coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by france, Mar 2, 2009.

  1. france

    france Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 2, 2009
    North East
    Hi all! This is my first post. We will be getting chickens (my first, DH grew up with them) this spring and would like to convert a shed we already have. I used to use it for a mini horse run-in.

    I have something very similar to this: http://www.lancasterbarns.com/acatalog/Alpaca-Run-In.html

    It
    is 6 feet x 12 feet. Mine has a wood floor (with very small spaces between the pressure treated boards), two dutch doors in the opening, and vents on either side in the peaks.

    The dutch doors look like the double doors on here:
    http://www.lancasterbarns.com/acatalog/BB_Quaker_Storage_Shed.html

    I have so many questions.

    1. Should we put another floor over the existing one?
    2. Here in northern New England we plan to insulate. DO we need to insulate the whole thing or just the roof and half way up the sides?
    3. The back of this will sit on a fence line. We plan to put the run off the side. Should the run enclosure incorporate the whole front too or just the side? Will it be a hassle to enter the run to get to the door for cleaning etc? The double doors can be set so only one side opens for my access.
    4. If we enclosed the front I was thinking in the summer we could leave the dutch doors, or one side open. Or is it better to lock them up totally at night? We are rural (fisher cats, raccoons) and I doubt the horses on the other side of the fence will be much of a deterrent to predators.
    5. Due to snow and bad weather should half the run have a roof over it?
    6. What am I forgetting?
    7. Oh and thoughts on the best placement of nesting boxes in relation to front doors and side chicken door.
    8.Do we need a window for light at all? We already have the slatted ventilation.

    Thank you!!!!
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
  3. Sugar Sand Farm

    Sugar Sand Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 24, 2007
    North Florida
    Hi and welcome to BYC
    We used a shed for our first coop. It was 8 x 10. I wouldn't do anything to the floor with the small spaces if you need to hose out the floor the water will seep through. I use that method in our Duck and Goose houses. We wash out theose houses everyday here in Florida it cuts down on the smell and flies. I would keep the double doors as your excess and cut a popdoor into the side inside the run area. Being up north you might have to insulate the house. This year it has been very cold here and the waterers have been frozen this year. In florida we worry about the heat not cold so my houses do not have any insulation lol I have been using heat lamps inside the coops here. It has gotten done to 14 here this winter and thats cold anywhere lol We put a window in our shed coop as well I think the additional light will help with egg laying,plus will give you added light inside. Be sure to cover the window with hardware cloth if you do decide to include one. As far as leaving one side of the doors open I would think that one again. Unless it is inside the run. Don't forget you have to keep predators out as well as chickens in. Hope this helps again Welcome Micki
     
  4. BB3

    BB3 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 30, 2008
    I lock mine up at night, your barn puts my 8 x 8 shed to shame, I enter into a small area for feed, and then another door into the pen. I looked at a lot of the coop examples on this forum, Im shure you might get some ideas from some of them. A window would be nice on a south side for sun in the winter, covering half the run sounds ok mine isnt covered and they dont go out in the snow. It is your decision to either go through the run to get to the door, me I dont.
    Im not shure how hot your summers are but ventilation helps a lot my barn was really hot last summer so I added more vents, plus have vents that you can close in winter if you need to for real cold days.
    anyway welcome.[​IMG]
     
  5. Chauntecleer's Keeper

    Chauntecleer's Keeper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 28, 2009
    West Little Rock, AR
    France,

    I would not worry about the floor as long as the litter wont fall through. If you insulate it, dont wipe out your ventilation. Chickens will peck and eat styrofoam insulation so I do not know what you will use for insulation. I think you will be fine as long as you can keep a section of the coop above freezing. I have a heat lamp, but our winters are pretty mild down in AR. Build the run where it is most convient for you. Plan to make cleaning the coop as simple as possible. You will regret it if you do not. A clean coop will keep your chickens healthy. Beware those predators! We lost every one of our chickens the first go around to racoons. We forgot to close the door twice and lost 7 chickens. Anything will eat a chicken. We put a hot wire on top of our fence, and now we can leave the door open. I have gotten up in the middle of the night and seen my chickens in their run at midnight. It probably would not hurt to cover part of the run if the snow gets deep. I do not have much experience with deep snow around here. Place the nesting boxes where they are most convient for you and easy to clean out. Make sure that they are big enough for your breed of chicken. I would put a light and an outlet in your coop if you can. It will help with egg production in the winter, and make things easy on you if you have to go to the coop in the dark. have fun and enjoy the eggs.
     
  6. HappyHatch'en

    HappyHatch'en Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 31, 2009
    GEORGIA
    Can't say it enough, prepare for the worse....predators can ruin your day, that includes your dog, neighbors dog, raccoon, etc.
    Welcome to BYC...the only place we all start the "rat race" as an EGG!
    HappyHatch'en
     
  7. Zahboo

    Zahboo Simply Stated

    Feb 3, 2009
    Hope Mills, NC
    You could always bring it to my house, your chickens would be safe here, and I'd finish the coop (you'd just never get them back) [​IMG]
     

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