PVC tractor 'lock' needed for door....Help, I'm out of ideas!

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Life is Good!, May 17, 2011.

  1. Life is Good!

    Life is Good! Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 14, 2011
    suburbia Chicagoland
    Ok folks. BYC'ers are amazing resourceful folks. I'm glad to be among others of like minds.

    We built a chicken tractor - PVC with wood frame base. Door is PVC too. I like what I did for hinges, but am at a loss for what works for a 'latch'?!

    What have you done that works?

    Here's our pictures:

    The hinge (it's sideways, so sorry)

    The door (also sideways)

    Right now, using garden twist-ties threaded through the frame and onto door. Lasts about a week. Hard to keep 'latch' closed, especially when 2 sons keep coming in and out and in and out and.....!

    Help?! Anyone with something better? Thanks!
  2. aggie9296

    aggie9296 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 28, 2011
    Panama City, FL
  3. nelgkel

    nelgkel Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 14, 2010
    Last edited: May 17, 2011
  4. Beekissed

    Beekissed True BYC Addict

    Keeping in theme with your PVC construction, you can just cut a short length of PVC and place a screw in the center and fasten to your door frame....just like an old fashioned turn-buckle made of wood. Turn horizontal to close, turn perpendicular to open...simple.

    Here's a hint about your tarping/roof construction: Being so far from the floor, your roof/tarp may not keep sun and rain from your chooks...you may want to get a bigger tarp and allow for some hang down on the sides of your structure. Also, some nylon roping, or even a cargo netting, laced over your tarps will keep them from flapping loose and being torn off in big winds.
  5. fried green eggs

    fried green eggs Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2011
    S.E. Michigan
    Nice design [​IMG] Could you put a screendoor spring on the center pvc on door to side upright frame which would auto close it and then put a lock rasp on outside of door for security? Or a short PVC pipe on a center monted bolt on the door frame that would swivel/turn up for open and turn/lay sideways across door by handle to lock closed? [​IMG]
  6. Pharm Girl

    Pharm Girl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 6, 2011
    I use this set up on EVERYTHING! I have about 10 of them on my coop. LOL. Cheap, easy, and the clip works like a charm! You would just have to drill a couple of holes into the PVC.

  7. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2009
    Could I make a suggestion about the door? There are a fair number of gaps between the door and the door frame that are vulnerable points for predators to get inside. What I would do is rebuild the door, this time making it a couple of inches larger than the door sill. Make it so it opens outward, and when it's closed it butts up against the outside of the door frame. Then you could use a couple of spring clips at the top and bottom to latch it closed.

    Something to think about, anyway.
  8. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    So, that's hardwarecloth you've made the sides out of, yes? In that case, as elmo says, it would be a shame to have a weak and gappy PVC doorframe be a weak point for predators to enter. You COULD rebuild it as she suggests, but if you do I would suggest using SEVERAL separate latches on it (at least one high and one low), because pvc is so bendy and easily pried apart. Alternatively you might just redo the whole thing with wood -- at least a wood doorway, possibly a wood doorframe as well. That would be a lot more predatorproof, more "matching" the predatorproofness of your hardwarecloth.

    JMHO, good luck, have fun,

  9. Dogfish

    Dogfish Rube Goldberg incarnate

    Mar 17, 2010
    Western Washington
    Two of these.

  10. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    That looks plastic? Raccoons chew thru plastic pretty easily. Even hard plastic. So it would be fine for daytime but I would not use it on anything that will contain chickens at night.


BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by