Two short planks.

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Uzuri, Apr 8, 2009.

  1. Uzuri

    Uzuri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    AKA, "building a 12-foot tractor with 8-foot boards"

    So I want to build a chicken tractor, and I want it to be plenty big enough to keep the chickens happy. I'm aiming for a length of 10 feet, though I might go 12 (I had someone tell me that their 12-footer turned into a permanent structure very quickly, hence the waffling [​IMG] ). The difficulty is that I have no way to haul 10-foot lengths and I really don't want to pay through the nose to have them delivered--and I'd planned to try and get them at a Habitat for Humanity ReStore, so I'm sure they don't deliver anyway.

    So, has anyone built a good, sturdy tractor without running a single board the whole length? And if you did, what tips could you pass along for preventing a tractor that just wants to fall apart in the middle when you move it?
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2009
  2. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Welllllll, it'd really be a lot better if you could talk someone with a stationwagon or truck or even just a car with roofrack into transporting a couple of 10-12 footers for you.

    But, if you just can't, and are bound and determined to make a 10-12' tractor out of 8' stock, you will need an additional 6-8' piece of 2x4 for each splice (if you can get good 1x2s, use two for each splice, you will sandwich them on either side of the 8' boards). (You could try cheaping out and using just a 4' length for the splice, but, I wouldn't, not for a tractor, at least not for the bottom frame of it.

    On a TOTALLY TRULY FLAT SURFACE, no kidding, no dips or wiggles, butt your longer pieces together, make sure it's real straight, put the 6' piece on so half is on one side of the joint and half on the other, and then glue-and-screw securely and thoroughly. If you have managed to acquire good quality 1x2s or 1x3s, do the joint as a sandwich, glued-and-screwed from both sides, which will give really pretty good strength when you are done.

    Even if you achieve good, lasting rigidity, you are adding extra weight to the tractor this way, which is not so good.

    Good luck, have fun,

  3. Uzuri

    Uzuri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    Oh I have a truck... it just only has a 6 foot bed. :p I'd have 12 foot lengths with a nicely sanded corner from dragging the ground all the way home [​IMG]

    Maybe what I should do is find someone with a nice trailer and borrow it. I see an egg bribe coming on [​IMG]
  4. flopshot

    flopshot Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 17, 2009
    throw a blanket on the roof and tie the twelve footers to the front and rear bumpers. i hauled home sixteen foot 1X4's on my four door S10 with no problem. i think you would be makeing more work for yourself splicing eight footers and the extra weight and expense really isn't worth it. if you do, Pat's right about the components being "glued and screwed". a polyurethane glue like gorrilla glue is all i would use for that.
  5. Uzuri

    Uzuri Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2009
    Well there we go; another S10 owner [​IMG] Looks like it's a nonissue, now.

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