Turning a Shed Into a Coop

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by thotchkiss60, Sep 19, 2011.

  1. thotchkiss60

    thotchkiss60 In the Brooder

    Sep 19, 2011
    Hello Everyone!

    I just signed up for the forum today!! I have been reading this for a while now, and thought it was finally time to join in the chicken fun!! This is my first post so bear with me! I have an old aluminum shed that I would like to turn into a coop, but have no idea where to start. I need to keep it simple and cost effective. I was just thinking about adding a few windows on the sides, and a screen door on the front. They put a few nesting boxes in and a few roosting bars. I just don't really know what materials to use and i am not that hand of a person. Does anyone out there have some advice/suggestions? Thanks!! Tim

  2. GoldenSparrow

    GoldenSparrow Songster

    Mar 11, 2011
    I turned me shed into a coop , but mine made of wood.
    I am not sure a aluminum shed would be the best thing. depending where you live, it would be cold for the hens in the winter.

    can you post a picture of it now?
    How many cchickens are you going to have? and how big is the shed?

    From Cape Cod!!!! [​IMG]
  3. Judy

    Judy Crowing Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    I'd build a free standing roost from 2x4's; the stud ones are cheap. Or you may be able to bolt boards to the shed for holding a roost. For nests I'd probably just set plastic bins or 5 gallon pails on the floor. You will want a couple of windows but more important is enough ventilation, at a high point in the coop, to let out humidity and ammonia. Screen will not be predator proof, and everyone loves chicken. Hardware cloth is not cheap but can make "windows" and vents predator proof. Be sure the holes you cut are positioned so they do not make a draft on the birds, especially if you live up north.

    An excellent page on ventilation with other info on coops and runs:


    And welcome to BYC!
  4. Hawkeye95

    Hawkeye95 Songster

    I think a metal shed will be just fine. You just don't want to cook them in the summer, so you'll need lots of ventilation! As PP said, it's important in the winter too. Winter vents should be open above the roosts or below-- no breeze should be blowing across the birds on their roost while they sleep. Check your local Habitat ReStore for some nice cheap used windows! That will help you cut down the cost of your conversion. I'd use 2X4's for the roost- with the nice big flat side up so they have enough room to really sit on it. You can make nest boxes out of about anything. People use buckets, covered cat litter boxes, milk crates, etc... Or you can build your own. Just be sure to use nice welded wire to fence in your chickens-- like hardware cloth, and not chicken wire.
  5. sheila3935

    sheila3935 Songster

    Jul 10, 2010
    Stonington, illinois
    Metal shed tend to have condensation which is bad. You will need to insulate and add lots of ventilation. I used one for awhile til we got the wooden coop done and in the summer even in the shade you can roast your birds very easy. They get really hot in the summer and really cold in the winter. It would have cost me more to redo then to build.

  6. Barbedwirecat

    Barbedwirecat Songster

    Sep 16, 2011
    I have mine in an old shed like that. We do have plastic siding on the outside and foam insulation boards on the inside. Mine is also attached to another storage building and has plenty of vents around the top (cover with hardware cloth to keep predators out) I'll be cutting room for windows soon, but we also have it in plenty of shade and it really doesn't get too hot in the summer. The insulation make a HUGE difference, I highly recommend it. It's also painted WHITE so it doesn't collect heat as bad, which again helps.

    I think you should be fine, just think about your outer colors and some insulation (above where the chickens can peck at it)
  7. thotchkiss60

    thotchkiss60 In the Brooder

    Sep 19, 2011
    Thanks everyone!

    I live in Phoenix so the winters are very mild, but the summers are really hot! I will get as many windows as possible for ventilatio and plan to have an extra fan running in the summer as well. Can I just cut hols out of the shed and put the harware cloth over the holes? I just worry about it being too sharp if the chickens get close to the windows. Maybe I can frame them out with some wood or something.I will try to get a picture of the shed posted later tonight. Thanks!
  8. ll

    ll Songster

    Welcome to BYC! [​IMG]

    We turned our metal shed into a hen house ~ I have a clickable link to it in my forum signature below.

    Good luck!
  9. MamiPollo

    MamiPollo Chirping

    Mar 6, 2011
    My Coop
    I turned my metal shed into a coop. You can get details here: http://www.squidoo.com/chicken-shed

    will also see a link on the top of that page to a shed conversion in Phoenix, AZ from the Mother Earth News.

    Summers in Louisville are hot and humid. This summer we had record heat. It stayed in the 90's for several weeks straight and went over 100 many days. The heat index stayed around 105 for several weeks.

    At first I worried like crazy about my birds, but then I realized they were doing just fine. They would pant a lot in the afternoons, and on the hottest days I would put frozen water bottles under the bushes where they hung out.

    They never complained about the heat at night and did just fine.

    You will see that my coop is a fresh air coop, with 2/3 of the walls on 2 sides completely screened. Early in the summer I recognized the importance of shading this building. In addiition to the burning bushes that were already there, I allowed some mulberry trees to grow up and also let some vines grow over it.

    I also found some rattan tanning mats at the drug store for a couple of dollars each and I bought a bunch of them. I laid some on the roof and hung one over the door and one over the window on the east side. The south side is shaded by bushes but the east side is not. As soon as the sun hit it mid-morning the temp inside the shed would skyrocket. With the mats hanging there & shading the roof, the inside of the shed stayed cool for hours.

    Now that the weather is turning cooler and rainier, I use the mats to cover the openings to cut down on weather getting inside the hen house. They make it feel cozy in there at night, but plenty of air still circulates.

  10. thotchkiss60

    thotchkiss60 In the Brooder

    Sep 19, 2011
    Thanks MiamiPollo. I could not find the link about converting a shed into a coop in Phoenix, AZ. Could you provide me the link to that? I think I will start on it in october to have it ready by Late winter, as winter is pretty mild here in Phoneix!

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