Wanting to build an awning similar to a hoop coop using cattle panels. Anyone who has worked with ca

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by Hholly, Sep 25, 2015.

  1. Hholly

    Hholly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My idea is to attach cattle panels using fence staples to my barn, where my run is. Then bend the panels in an arch and attach them to the fence of my run using heavy duty zip ties. So the panels would be less arched than in the hoop coops I've seen, but more sloped downward. Then I will tarp it. Can anyone tell me if this sounds feasable? I have never tried bending a cattle panel before. The run is 10 foot wide by 30 ft long along side of my wooden barn. The fence is 6ft high. I planned to buy 5 16ft cattle panels to cover about 20ft of the run.

    Thanks for any info!
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    I haven’t done anything like that but use cattle panels to cage my tomatoes. Those 16’ sections are going to be quite flexible and kind of awkward to work with but should work.

    They are going to pick up a lot of wind load so they need to be able to handle that. The other thing to consider is snow load. They are going to see snow in Indiana. I’m not sure how they will slope when you install them. Probably depends on how high you attach them to the barn but you want snow to fall off, not accumulate. You don’t want a snow trap next to the barn. I think you can manage that. You might want to do a trial run just to see how they bend.

    As long as you are using true fencing staples and not those ¾” poultry staples you should be OK on the barn side. They will see wind so you need to use a lot of them. I’d put a 2x6 or such along the side of the barn to give me something firm to attach too. Driving those staples into something flexible is a pain in the rear, results in a lot of dropped staples and hurt fingers. Don’t ask how I know. You might be able to use a hydraulic or pneumatic construction quality stapler, maybe rent one, instead of hammering those others in?

    Since the panels will be flexing in the wind I’d really prefer screwing into that 2x6. Maybe something like a metal two hole rigid conduit strap. If you google that you will get some pictures so you can see what I mean. They are a bit expensive but you would not need a lot and they should really hold well. However you do this your biggest challenge may be getting access with that panel in the way.

    I don’t know what the top of your run fence looks like, sounds like some type of wire. Those panels are going to be heavy, especially with wind hitting them or snow and ice building up. I don’t know how well your run fence is set up to handle that weight straight down or the wind side load. With a decent fence you should be OK, my main concern is the weight of those panels going into wire instead of straight into the posts. Do you need to add a top rail to get the load back into the posts? Your posts are probably 8’ to 10’ apart and those panels are only 52” wide.

    I use zip ties for a lot of things but I’m not sure how much I’d trust them long term in that service. If you do attach the panels to the wire I’d probably use zip ties as an installation aid, they are quick and easy to put on and hold the panel in place, but I think I’d come back with hog rings or maybe use wire to tie the panels to the fence.

    Hopefully someone that has actually done this or at least built a hoop coop or run will see this and tell you where I’m wrong or help you with details better. The connections are going to be important. I really like your idea and think it can work really well. Good luck!
     
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  3. Hholly

    Hholly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the help! I do plan to have a piece of wood to attach to like you said. I was thinking of those barbed fence staples, but I will check out the conduit clamps. The top of my fence has that tubing, it's made of chain link dog kennel panels. I was going to attach the panels farther down the fence tho to give more of a slope. The zip ties i was going to use are those big heavy ones. But I might rethink that. Hopefully, if the tarp is tight enough, the snow will shed off. It's also on the east side of the barn, out of the wind.

    Thanks again for the great advice!
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2015
  4. microchick

    microchick Overrun With Chickens

    Watch the zip ties for weathering. I use them outside to connect a bird feeder to our deck railing and I usually have to replace them every 12-18 months. They will become brittle and break. I've never looked to see if they have ones that are rated for outside use. I imagine it is the UV that gets to them.

    Prepare to use a lot of muscle if you are bending and shaping cattle panels. They be tough characters to bend. My husband has cut them with a bolt cutter and welded them. Easy Peasy.

    I agree. Use a lot of heavy fence staples to secure them. I'm thinking heavy duty anchoring is going to be needed when those wonderful winter winds and snow hit, especially if you are covering your panels with tarps.

    Interesting building project. Pictures of progress always appreciated.
     
  5. Hholly

    Hholly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Good to know about the zip ties. Thanks for the info! Yes, I will post pics when I finish. Cheers!
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Could use U-bolts to attach panel or wood to top tube of chain link.
    Could go over the fence for snow shedding and more coverage, or cut panel shorter for desired slope.....
    ......instead of attaching lower down inside fence, could be a snow/debris catcher.
     
  7. paintedChix

    paintedChix Chillin' With My Peeps

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    For what your describing, I would attach the cattle panel to a board (2x4?) and then attach to the barn (or attach to the barn first) and same on the chain link side. You could then easily U-bolt the panel to the top of the kennel. Would make it easier and neater, I believe.

    We did temporary sheds out at each pasture. The panels are tied up with hay string. The hay string DOES wear out w/ the wind here in the carolinas and cats claws rip thru the tarps allowing the wind to shred them after that. On this one, you can't really see how it is joined... Eventually the cattle panels (2) will be joined via fence staples directly to the pallets (which will eventually be bolted together rather than just tied with haystring).

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Here are two views of the boys feed shed - before this green tarp was shredded. It currently has 2 silver tarps on it and will soon have a roof made of 2 ltr plastic bottles.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    and here are 2 of our chicken tractors with a tarped roof. Before the true cold hits, we need to have larger tarps over these. For now, they work. 1 pic shows the structure, the other shows how panel is stapled to the wood bottom frame. On the chicken tractors, the hooped panels are stapled about 1/2 way down the board...

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Here is our original shed with the hooped panels. I can't find anymore of the chicken tractors and not sure where to look (know I have some other shots).

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    When we make the sheds permanent, I think that putting the panels on a board first makes the panels easier to handle. The weight will make for easier to move the panel(s) in 1 portion and then hold it in place while it's attached. Not sure how to describe what I mean. Know that it's much easier to turn and hold the panels w/ the boards already attached to build the tractors than it was to deal w/ the hoops on the "sheds"... The cattle panels are now made 50" tall and each of our constructions using them has 2 of them (so 100' in depth w/ front to back w/ the hoops being 16' long side to side).

    I've joined the panels via wire, haystring and zip ties. The haystring, so far, is holding the best! Amazing to me...

    Hope this helps.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2015
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  8. Hholly

    Hholly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That's a great idea. Thanks!
     
  9. Hholly

    Hholly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    "div class="quote-container" data-huddler-embed="/t/1023047/wanting-to-build-an-awning-similar-to-a-hoop-coop-using-cattle-panels-anyone-who-has-worked-with-cattle-panels-please-advise#post_15882584" data-huddler-embed-placeholder="false">Quote:
    Originally Posted by paintedChix [​IMG]

    For what your describing, I would attach the cattle panel to a board (2x4?) and then attach to the barn (or attach to the barn first) and same on the chain link side. You could then easily U-bolt the panel to the top of the kennel. Would make it easier and neater, I believe.
    Here are two views of the boys feed shed - before this green tarp was shredded. It currently has 2 silver tarps on it and will soon have a roof made of 2 ltr plastic bottles.
    and here are 2 of our chicken tractors with a tarped roof. Before the true cold hits, we need to have larger tarps over these. For now, they work. 1 pic shows the structure, the other shows how panel is stapled to the wood bottom frame. On the chicken tractors, the hooped panels are stapled about 1/2 way down the board...
    When we make the sheds permanent, I think that putting the panels on a board first makes the panels easier to handle. The weight will make for easier to move the panel(s) in 1 portion and then hold it in place while it's attached. Not sure how to describe what I mean. Know that it's much easier to turn and hold the panels w/ the boards already attached to build the tractors than it was to deal w/ the hoops on the "sheds"... The cattle panels are now made 50" tall and each of our constructions using them has 2 of them (so 100' in depth w/ front to back w/ the hoops being 16' long side to side).
    I've joined the panels via wire, haystring and zip ties. The haystring, so far, is holding the best! Amazing to me...
    Hope this helps"
    That helps a lot! Thanks for posting all the photos! Can you describe your roof of 2 liter bottles you are making? Sounds interesting.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2015
  10. Jesusfreak101

    Jesusfreak101 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I dont know about anyone elses chickens but mine easly go in and out of cattle panel and the includes my fat girl whose a deleware she the biggest hen i have.
     

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