Plywood alternatives


May 24, 2021
Clarksville Tennessee
My pre-fab joke coop is caving in and needs to be replaced before winter sets in here in Tennessee. And of course wood prices are sky high still. I'm in search of plywood alternatives. I currently have 3 silkies so my goal is to make the coop area large enough that when it is wet out they can hang out in the coop and have plenty of room.
I've begun a 9.5'x4' foundation...then when it came to the flooring and walls I just cant see paying nearly $30 for 4x8 sheet of plywood!
I found this and wanted to see what yall thought and if anyone had ever tried using it before for similar projects.
1/2 in. x 4 ft. x 8 ft. Southern Pine Asphalt Impregnated Board
My thinking is this would hopefully suffice for sound structure and weather proof (even a little sound proof for my roo) until i come across old barnwood or something like i really would prefer to cover it with in the future.
thank u for your help!!!


Free Ranging
Jun 7, 2020
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
I built mine with Hardieboard. Normally more expensive than plywood, when lumber prices rose, it was slow to follow. Concrete and fiberglass, its in it for the VERY long haul. Great moisture resistance. HARD on tools.

If you are making a long term investment, it may be worth it. Short term, thin metal roofing panels are a quick fix, but there are definite concerns cutting them and cleanin up the edges later. Best if you work in lengths you don't need to cut.


Mar 5, 2020
Central Illinois
Locally, 1/2 plywood is $20/sheet and 3/4 plywood is $30/sheet. Prices have pretty much come down to pre-pandemic levels. People seem to forget that wood really wasn't all that cheap before the pandemic. If you have a Menards in TN, check there as they usually beat Lowes and Home Depot by several bucks and then run an 11% rebate on top of it.

While OSB is slightly cheaper than plywood, I would not use it for exterior sheathing. Even if you paint it, moisture will inevitable reach the board and it will start to swell, flake, and disintegrate. Even ordinary plywood is not really intended for exterior sheathing and may not last long term.

As repugnant as the prices may be, you need to install a proper exterior sheathing or siding. You have a couple of options: 1) T1-11 plywood panels; 2) Composite panels (LP SmartSide and the like); 3) Vinyl siding; 4) Wood planks; and 5) Metal panels.


Premium Feather Member
Mar 7, 2020
Meridian, MS
Cutting it was the worst with hand-held manual shears. But the pens look so nice and I don't have to worry about something chewing through the wood or it rotting.

My stepdad has a bunch of tools and he got so annoyed he busted out some saw and started using that. lol
At the risk of being scolded for not reading the entire thread, I’ll drop my 2 cents in. When cutting corrugated metal, take a normal circular saw and turn the blade around backwards. Cuts like a dream. You still need to be careful of the edges. On my last coop I used horizontal metal sheets for the siding and covered the raw corners with 1x4. Slap some Thompson’s on the bits that see rain and smile at your masterpiece!


6 Years
Sep 26, 2015
Portland OR
Yeah cheapest thing I'm seeing is $10...and out of stock on a lot of those.

Provided you're on a raised foundation (foundation blocks or concrete blocks) so your siding isn't near the ground AND you plan your ROOF correctly- AND don't go cheap on paint (edited to add- though free paint is a great price as mentioned above --- just mentioning that if you buy paint, whether it's the bottom stuff or the best stuff - you "pay" the same amount in labor, i.e. your time) - you can get away with some stuff on the siding.

Plan for a generous roof overhang on the eaves- I aim for around 1 foot off each side, and I have at least 3ft overhang on my "people door" side- and 1.5 foot overhang off the back of the building. This will shade your walls and should keep your siding pretty dry. Use a high quality paint, foundation about 8-12" off the ground and many materials will last longer. (from rain soaked Oregon - my siding is rarely wet. dirty from the poultry exhaust fan, yes. Wet, no.)

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Jul 27, 2019
Mississippi Gulf Coast
use hardware cloth frame and you can skin it with anything. Hang outat the dump and get you some Stuff. I went by a demo of the city park and the contractor was hoping someone would come get all the tin off the ball park dug outs and baseball buildings ( sheds, batting cage, score box...) He was going to push them down and into a dumpster. I wated a year until i found my roof that was FREE.
17' of power coated aluminum walk way roofing.


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