Sandbox run

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by frog522, Aug 26, 2010.

  1. frog522

    frog522 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 16, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    I finally decided to take the leap of faith and add sand to my run. My run is currently on top of concrete and is about 4'x8' for two chickens. I spent yesterday making a sandbox frame that borders the entire run and goes on the inside.

    Can I go ahead and start putting sand directly on top of the concrete inside the sandbox frame? Do I need to put something in between the sand and the concrete floor?

    I just wanted to see if there is anything I might be forgetting...

    (I'm a hardware store newbie and at first all the bags in the masonry section looked the same, then I realized wait...concrete mix can't be right...that wouldn't be good if it rained [​IMG])
     
  2. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 15, 2010
    Forest Grove, OR
    What kind of sand did you end up getting? (Sorry, don't have the answer to your question)
     
  3. frog522

    frog522 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 16, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    I ended up getting all-purpose sand at Home Depot. In our area the sand is grey colored (not very pretty) but has a nice assortment of grain sizes (medium coarse). I went to Lowe's today to check out their brand of all-purpose sand but the grain size was very fine like the play sand they are sell.

    I'm banking on the larger grain to help with drainage. I also drilled holes near the bottom of the sandbox frame to help with drainage too. I hope it all helps! *fingers crossed*[​IMG]
     
  4. oldchickenlady

    oldchickenlady Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 9, 2010
    Cabot, AR
    I cant think of anything that could/should go on the concrete before the sand except maybe the rubber mat things they use to line horse stalls with, but that just would be an option, not a necessity. You can get them at the farmer's co-op, or TSC, feed store, etc. They are fairly pricey at $30-35 a piece, but would add some insulation from the cold concrete in the winter. Personally, I would put the mats down first just because I happen to have some. If I didn't, then I probably wouldn't go buy them special just for that.
     
  5. Yay Chicks!

    Yay Chicks! Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 15, 2010
    Forest Grove, OR
    Thanks and good luck. I'm not concerned with drainage as the run is covered and stays pretty dry even in big rain storms. I had been adding dried leaves to the run weekly, which has worked well, however, I've run out, and it will be quite some time before the big sweet gum drops again. Anyway, that is why I am now considering sand. Big litter box. [​IMG]
     
  6. GrandmaAnn

    GrandmaAnn Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 19, 2010
    Wisconsin
    My husband added some leftover washed sand to one area, and it has worked well. It drains well, dries well, and the chickens have picked through it and eaten some. Only problem I have noticed is that the flies really like it on a cool day as it gives off a lot of heat.
     
  7. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 23, 2009
    DFW
    Quote:That's what I use, too: all purpose sand from Home Depot (not the Lowes product). Funny that there should be such a difference in sand! My husband accidentally bought a bag from Lowes once and left it out in the yard. It rained, and I didn't notice the bag until the whole thing had solidified almost like concrete. Definitely don't want that in the run!
     
  8. BankerJohn

    BankerJohn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 2, 2010
    Lecanto, Florida
    the concrete is relatively non pourous. It will hold the water and keep the sand from draining. Make sure there is enough drainage or your sand may get nasty. Does the concrete hold water now, or is there a decent slope to allow water to run off to one side?
     
  9. frog522

    frog522 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 16, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Quote:The area on which the run is on is slightly tilted, probably 2-4 degrees. Looking at the run surface before I put down the sand, I didn't seen any dips that water might pool in. It's just a matter of how tightly the sand "holds" water and whether gravity will pull water in the direction of the declined surface. I'll find out when it rains. [​IMG]

    Update! The girls are in the run! Yesterday afternoon was the first time the run and coop have been brought together, everything went really smoothly. This is also the first time the girls have been able to use their pop door! I expected that I would have to hand carry them (like luggage [​IMG], otherwise they run away from me) from the human door into their run like I've been doing everyday, but within one minute of opening their pop door they both jumped out and started exploring their new sandbox! Now they can freely move between their coop and run as they please.
     
  10. MaKettle

    MaKettle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Good luck with your sand! I did the same thing & am not as happy 3 mons later, as I was when I first put it in. I have a small run & after doing a bunch of research, I opted for about 2 inches of gravel (for drainage purposes) and then the Home Depot brand play sand. I thought that it would be very easy to scoop with my kitty litter scoop & easy maintenance. Very quickly my chickens dug the gravel up through the sand, making it virtually impossible to scoop the poop, or even find it for that matter. Even with my covered run, the sand is no longer nice brown sand...it just looks like brown dirt & rocks. It looks disgusting, not like the clean sand anymore. On to the nice things--it drains very well & stays relatively dry, even when the occasionally sideways rain creeps in to the run. The chickens really seem to enjoy it.

    I think I'm going to start over again, minus the gravel...keep us up to date on how it works out for you..hopefully you will have better luck than I did!
     

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