Repurposing a shed into a coop, and a few questions

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Killlakilljoys, Apr 21, 2019.

  1. Killlakilljoys

    Killlakilljoys In the Brooder

    Feb 26, 2019
    Central indiana
    Howdy! I got the go-ahead to repurpose out old playhouse/shed into a coop recently (yay, no building a new one!). It's just over 11 ft wide and just under 8 ft long. . . And it's covered in ventilation, pre-installed electrical, and insulation! This isn't all a good thing, unfortunately.
    sorry about the GIANT images :p.

    I plan on finishing the walls, and I have a guy for the electrical.

    should I go ahead and rip out all the insulation or leave in whats still attached to the walls? it hasnt been touched in around 10 years. additionally, this is a really tall space with a skylight. how many chickens do you think I could fit in this space with the nesting boxes off the ground? I was hoping for around 10.

    I was also curious to know how I could do some pest control pre-chicken. . . there are so many spiders.

    Out of curiosity, how would you guys take advantage of the electricity?

    there's just so much to unpack here. and unbuild. and rebuild. a little overwhelming.
  2. Killlakilljoys

    Killlakilljoys In the Brooder

    Feb 26, 2019
    Central indiana
    I should mention I'm planning a run too- not a full-time coop situation.
  3. miguelitro

    miguelitro Songster

    Jul 17, 2012
    San Diego, CA
    Remove the insulation, paint the walls and floor (you should use a livestock safe paint), cover the floor with vinyl rolled flooring maybe, put in lots of ventilation up high and some windows down low that can be opened and closed. The nesting boxes and perches are the easy part.

    Add a pop up door out to the run and you are done. Perhaps leave an outlet inside and definitely one outside.

  4. Naser

    Naser Songster

    Oct 29, 2014
    With a run it should fine, you need roosting bars, be sure you have enough ventilation, make the pop door one or two feet above the ground to allow space for bedding, If you will keep the insulation I would put food grade DE in it, l don't know if you need the insulation or not, it depends on the weather where you live, electricity is useful if you raise chicks, prevent water from freezing in winter or use light in winter to increase egg production
    Good luck.
    kwhites634 likes this.
  5. happyhens1972

    happyhens1972 Songster

    Jul 24, 2013
    Worcester, UK
    The insulation will insulate against heat and cold so if you get extremes of weather, I'd leave it and board over the top. There's plenty of space there for ten chooks to nest/roost so no worries with that.

    The electrics....well, it depends what your future plans are and what climate you have (I'm in UK and have no idea about US climate in different states) You could put in plug sockets to allow for heating if needed in Winter, both for the house and the water if that is likely to be a problem. It will also allow for brooder heating if chicks are part of your plan (carefully consider the Chicken Math Scenario! Lol!) You may also want to plug in a vacuum or pressure washer to help with cleaning at some point. You could put in lighting to allow for easier cleaning/access/ability to check on chooks.

    As for the pest control....three years ago, I sprayed my coop with a permethrin based woodworm treatment (in my case, SoluGard but don't know if it's available in US). I gave it a thorough soaking in all the nooks and crannies using a pump action garden/weedkiller sprayer and left it to dry out just as thoroughly. I have not seen a red mite or in fact any crawling insect in it ever since. I also back this up with a generous coating of DE, just in case! The spray would kill your spiders ahead of time but far more importantly, hopefully keep the dreaded red scourge at bay!! You could spray it on, over and behind all the insulation before boarding over and I would suggest when you board, you make the boards easily removable...i.e removable screws, not you will likely need further bug treatment at some time in the future and behind the board would be a perfect harbour for the little red devils!!
  6. Killlakilljoys

    Killlakilljoys In the Brooder

    Feb 26, 2019
    Central indiana
    @happyhens1972 I live in central Indiana, so we can have winters bad enough to warrant me wither bringing them in my house or putting heating outside if it gets too bad!

    honestly, it needs no more ventilation.. its got plenty.

    ventilation from both ceiling areas (Great for moisture whicking in winter!)

    im not really even sure what this one on the overhang is about but i know its a really long vent and i know thats useful.

    theres also a pretty good window, with an inside bug netting, seen below

    Honestly, i diddnt even plan for one. i planned to make the run as tall as the door (tall enough for me to easily walk in, and for them to flutter around if they so please) so the plan was to just open the doors directly into the run and lock them back every night. unless thats uncomfortable for the chickens..? then maybe i could hang a curtain to create the illusion of a much shorter entrance?

    thanks for all the advice so far guys! :)
  7. Killlakilljoys

    Killlakilljoys In the Brooder

    Feb 26, 2019
    Central indiana
    i should note im trying to make as little change as possible to the shed- id get culled along with my hens if i tried to cut a hole in a wall! roosts and boxes are one thing, but the walls are as they will be. ill likley not be allowed to make any change whaysoever to the outside, hold the run and a little ramp to go with it (and maybe a security camera, the last attempt at chickens we had on this lot resulted in... a week long string of dissapearences year 2)
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Not if it goes above the insulated ceiling inside.
    I'd tear out all the rodent homes, I mean insulation.
  9. kwhites634

    kwhites634 Slow hands & an easy touch

    Agreed, except for the insulation part. If I were doing it, and there were no insulation already there, I wouldn't put any in, but if it were already there I'd make use of it between exterior & interior walls; can't do anything but help. Indiana can get pretty hot & pretty cold.
  10. rosemarythyme

    rosemarythyme Crowing

    Jul 3, 2016
    Pac NW
    My Coop
    If you're going to keep the insulation better cover it up, and check frequently for any signs of rodent intrusion. Of all the random things my floor is insulated, but we have hardware cloth surrounding the entire base and it's very easy to check the floor itself for any signs of rodents.

    None of the photos of ventilation are showing up so not sure where the ventilation is in the structure.

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