Tips for working with chicken wire / poultry netting? ** updated **

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by cjstanman, Feb 2, 2011.

  1. cjstanman

    cjstanman Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 3, 2008
    Just north of Raleigh
    I have been searching but not finding much. Does anyone have tips for working with chicken wire? For example, we are making a wooden brooder box with hinged lids. The lids have a cut-out and I want to cover that with chicken wire. (I am not talking hardware cloth, with the small squares. I mean the hexagonal 1" holes in poultry fencing.) [​IMG]

    I tried to use a slap stapler - apparently I have really bad aim, ha ha! It was quite frustrating. I then moved on to a Bostitch stapler but the staples were too long. I will make a trip to the hardware store tomorrow to see if they even make shorter ones. Figured a compressor ought to do the trick - take THAT, you stupid wire!

    But seriously - even if I can figure out how to attach the darn thing more easily, there is still the issue of having a "finished edge" that won't cut me to shreds when all is said and done. I've tried to fold it under, but either I'm not very good at that or it just doesn't lend itself to it.

    How do you attach it so it's flat, smooth, and has nice edges?

    Last edited: Feb 6, 2011
  2. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Use lathe strips, or 1x1 boards and nail it over the edges like a window frame. It's the same thing I do with hardware cloth covered window openings.
  3. WhetzelMomma

    WhetzelMomma Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 8, 2009
    I think most people "frame" it in... sandwiched between two pieces of wood trim.
  4. Teach97

    Teach97 Bantam Addict

    Nov 12, 2008
    Hooker, OK
    what they said about using a thin piece of wood on the know?

    it also helps to have help...gloves are really important good metal scissors (sheers)...I have a craftsman that I use to attach way better than any stapler I have tried...
  5. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    I got an inexpensive Stanley brand stapler at WalMart. Works great for chicken wire. Be careful with that stuff though! One time I cut it loose and it "sprung" back and hit me on the lip - cut it of course, the day before a job interview so I had a nice fat lip! [​IMG] Could have been an eyeball or somethin though, perhaps eye glasses would be a good idea for those who are clumsy like myself.
  6. Cacciatore

    Cacciatore Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 19, 2011
    San Pablo, CA
    I usually use those 'U' shaped doubles pointed staples they make for chicken wire. You hammer them in with a hammer. I know, low tech. I then edge the wire with wood door stop strips. You can get it at Home Depot. Wear gloves, eye protection and have patience.
  7. cjstanman

    cjstanman Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 3, 2008
    Just north of Raleigh
    Thanks! That all makes perfect sense and I feel silly now - we use the lath/sandwich method when putting plastic sheeting over the openings in our greenhouse, derrr! Should've realized that could easily transfer over to this.

    Glad I asked. [​IMG]
  8. cjstanman

    cjstanman Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 3, 2008
    Just north of Raleigh
    Just wanted to follow up and show everyone what I managed to get done. I was trying to make a lid for a brooder box using poultry netting / chicken wire. I had tried a slap stapler (fail) and also a Bostitch pneumatic stapler (fail). I then tried an Arrow stapler (better) and ended up getting a different type of Arrow stapler (win!). I took your advice and sandwiched the wire between the frame of the lid and a piece of lath, then had to figure out which length of stupid staple to use, ha ha! I ended up using 3/8" staples and just got the wire attached, *then* put a piece of lath on top and used 9/16" staples. Holy crap, could it have been any harder to STAPLE? ha ha ha! Here are the pics. The T50 R.E.D. Arrow stapler was from Home Depot (about $23) and the package says it's 50% easier to squeeze and delivers 40% more power. I found it very easy to use and there was a handy switch to flip to drive the staples in a little harder. Thank you, everyone, for your tips! And now, time to order some chicks! [​IMG]

    Here are some pics:




    Last edited: Feb 6, 2011
  9. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2009
    Thanks for the very handy product review! I need to get a new stapler this spring because I think my hand is still sore from the one I used last summer. I'll look for the Arrow model.
  10. chkn

    chkn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 27, 2010
    You can pick up some of the small fence staples (U nails):

    It's always handy to have some around both small and heavy duty.

    I do notice that those wood stapler staples tend to pull out real easy.

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