revamping....help please

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by insanity, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. insanity

    insanity Chillin' With My Peeps

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    OK here is my problem my big coop was originally a 4x8 tack shed. Someone cut a chicken door in one corner and slapped in some shelves for nesting. I want to put exterior boxes on the backside. I will also be ripping out the shelves for roosting space. I've not done alot of construction (hubby says I'm on my own when it comes to the chickens) so I need to keep this as simple as possible. My question is what are the minimal dimensions for a nest box. I have standard size and bantam hens, nothing over say 6 lbs if that matters.
     
  2. GardenGal

    GardenGal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I usually figure on a 12" square minimum, then I add on some more inches because I'm paranoid. You can do it! It helps to pre-drill your holes and a good wood glue will make your project a lot stronger. Good luck!
     
  3. gardendufus

    gardendufus Chillin' With My Peeps

    Am going to be watching this thread as I am in the same situation. I built my coop without exterior nest boxes, now I want to get rid of the inside boxes to improve the inside area of my coop (8 X 10 X 8). The smallest I have seen recommended is 12" X 12" X 12". Personally I favor the 14" box. But I have decided to build an exterior communal nest. Basically one long box with several openings in it.

    Am just now in the stages of 'thinkin about it'. The biggest problem I have is that conceptually I thought I'd build it, then cut the hole in the exterior of the coop, and slide the box thru and secure it. But I'm not sure how that will work around the stud walls. Hmmm, may have to think that over again.

    Anyway, good luck with your project, I'll be watching you.
     
  4. insanity

    insanity Chillin' With My Peeps

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    thanks,
    I like the idea of one long box, no dividers =easier.Plus right now they share one box just fine.I'll try to get some before and after shots for ya Garden. Any additional ideas would be great.
     
  5. Bogtown Chick

    Bogtown Chick Overrun With Chickens

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    I'd go 14 or 15" square on the nest box. I've tried smaller and the birds didn't care for it as much opting for the larger box. I have heavy breeds. Not sure if you have bantams...? Anyhow, They like the opening a little cozier though, So they are fickle that way. My coop is a bit of a recycled lumber project. So I have various sized openings to essesntially same sized boxes. They like the privacy created with smaller openings , but like the larger box.
     
  6. insanity

    insanity Chillin' With My Peeps

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    OK, so I'm looking at about 12-14 deep, 14 tall, and 5-6ft long with 3-4 entry holes and a cupboard door style rear open. If I build it first than attach it, go inside and just cut out the entry holes there wont be as much cutting on the existing wall.I'm a little worried about structeral integrity. I can handle that. Now to draw plans and buy lumber.
     
  7. insanity

    insanity Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Now my hubby says I should insulate and add a electrical outlet. He had better decide to help cause I don't do electricity.
     
  8. Bogtown Chick

    Bogtown Chick Overrun With Chickens

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    LOL. Time to put him to work. An outlet would be most wonderful to be sure.
     
  9. cknkids

    cknkids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We were racing against growing chicks so built w/out nest boxes. When we had time to add our exterior nest box we opted for about 14 x14 x30 with no dividers with the 14" height sloping up to about 20" for water runoff. We mounted by running a screw from inside through the plywood into the 2x2 framing of the nest box. We only cut one 12" diameter hole leading into the box (actually did this first) and mounted the nest box so the floor was a couple of inches lower to retain the pinewood bedding. Good luck with yours.
     
  10. gardendufus

    gardendufus Chillin' With My Peeps

    Amazing....this is essentially the solution I came up with this morning when I was sitting out looking at the coop. I suddenly realized I was talking about making a box with a front, when the plywood side of the coop could serve as the front of the communal box. I have (or will have when I get this year's chicks and they start laying) about a dozen hens. I'm thinking 48" long should be sufficient? Right now I have 6 nest boxes, with 6 girls all laying in 2 boxes.
     

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