screw/caulk plexiglass on plywood coop wall?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by dftkarin, Nov 4, 2008.

  1. dftkarin

    dftkarin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 27, 2008
    I have a small coop with walls made of half inch plywood and I have a smallish rectangle that I would like to cover with a piece of plexiglass from the outside. I thought I could either use 3/4" screws with big flat heads, or maybe strips of thin wood screwed around it - and I thought I would sort of glue it with a bead of caulk around the edge (I'm imagining the plexiglass will be bigger than the hole) and then caulk around the edges to keep water out. I could put the plexiglass on the inside but how could I prevent water from seeping in? Could this work? I already have a lot of big hardware-cloth-covered adjustable vents but when they are closed, I would still like a windowed south facing spot. The hole is only 6"x14" or so - but it faces south and a window would be great.
  2. buckeye lady

    buckeye lady Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 29, 2008
    Rootstown Ohio
    How about hardware cloth on the inside and a piece of plexiglass that overlaps opening a bit-that you have pre-drilled holes in the corners for pan head screws on the outside. Use some Weather stripping on the edges between the plexiglass and the outside wall to ward off drafts. You can have a nice sunny window that captures the warmth of the winter Sun, but can be removed during the warmer months to keep coop cool.
  3. jubylives

    jubylives Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 23, 2007
    Central Iowa
    If you go with the screws holding the plexiglass, try using rubber washers. I've used them to keep the screws from cracking the plexiglass. Just a thought.

  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Washers and pre drilled holes is a good idea. One thing I learned though, is that plexi glass does change size with weather!!! Or at least my crappy stuff does. I put it on with caulk on a cold 40F day, and during the heat of summer, the thing bowed out! It's flat again now that it is winter.
  5. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    If you're going to go the removeable route (which is not that much more work, and you'll appreciate it in the summer) consider using bolts and wingnuts instead of screws. Put a rubber washer under the bolt head on the outside, and put the wingnut inside the coop. The best way to keep water from running behind the plexiglas with this arrangement would be a flashing or drip cap above the window, but if for some reason you did not want to do that, you can get removeable silicone caulk (made for people who want to temporarily caulk windows closed during the winter for draftproofing) and run a bead of that along the outside top of the plexiglas.

    Good luck, have fun,

  6. dftkarin

    dftkarin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 27, 2008
    I am embarressed to admit that I don't really understand exactly what a drip cap is or how to add one to my coop. I get the idea of flashing - shiny bend-able stuff that keeps water from seeping into cracks and joints - but how exactly would I use flashing (and drip caps) to keep water from coming into my plywood coop? I have several large rectangular hardware-cloth covered holes in the coop, with hinged flaps that drop down (hinged on the bottom, not the top - so I can't count on the flaps to shield from rain, etc) - and I would like to do something to prevent water from running into the holes if the flaps are open (or closed, because there will still be a little gap if water is really running down the walls), and to protect the openings from rain if the wind blows it sideways. Could someone help me understand how I could fashion a drip cap? Thank you for your help!!
  7. Dustoff79

    Dustoff79 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 5, 2008
    San Antonio, Texas
    Drip cap is just a piece of metal or wood to divert water from the top of the window, see

    think you would be best served in making the plexiglass removeable, I would build a frame of 1"x2" that is just smaller than the plexiglass window, I would then drill two holes on each side through the plexiglass and the frame (the number of these will really depend on how thick or thin your plexiglass is, thinner will require more because you will not get good seal because it bends more). I would then slightly counter sink a bolt in each hole to make the head even with the 1"x2" and allow the threads to extend out past the plexiglass. Then take the plexiglass off, attach the frame to the side of the coop. the side with the bolt head would be against the coop with the bolt threads poking out to hang the plexi glass on. Paint the 1"x2" and caulk around the base. Install a drip cap above the window, then when dry you can put the plexiglass on the threads extending out and use wingnuts and washers to attach. To keep water from seeping in around the edges get some weather stripping and attach with silicon cement or just use a bead of silicon cement on the plexiglass (let it dry) to for a gasket.

    Hope this gives you an idea.
  8. BeardedChick

    BeardedChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    What about just going to a Habitat for Humanity store or the like and buying a cheap aluminum frame window? I just bought a *big* storm window yesterday for the turkey coop, cheap. It's got a simple frame that will screw right on.

    Much easier than dealing with plexiglass, IMO.
  9. Heather J

    Heather J Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 29, 2008
    I'm using plex on a couple of my windows that will remain open pretty much all summer. I used some little mirror clips that I screwed into the trim around the window. The hole won't be air tight, but I'm not worried about air tight, I'm worried about draftiness. I'm also not concerned about tiny amounts of water dripping into my window around the edges of the plex. Granted, I live in a cold area where we get very little rain, so you may be more concerned about the water coming in around the edges.

    I didn't use the mirror clips on top of the window, that way if I get a nice winter day, I have the option of sliding it out completely. A lot of this is going to depend on where you live and if the window is going to get hammered by rain. A strip of something to prevent the water from easily drippig behind the plex is probably your best bet. My windows have hardware cloth on the inside too, so no matter what I do with the glass, the coop is still secure from predators.

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