Home & Garden

DIY Chicken Coop

Share this Story

Mrs. Sunshine decided she wanted chickens . . . So guess who got stuck building the coop?

This was the first chicken coop I have ever built and like most men that I know –  I didn’t bother reading any silly design specs. After all if you had designs, can you really call it a DIY Chicken Coop?

Get My Top 10 Homemade Cleaners (Recipes)

Enter Your Details Below and I will Send You the Recipe Guide!

I will never give away, trade or sell your email address. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Thus, this coop was designed and built like every man should do it . . . with a beard and nothing more than a chicken scratch piece of paper for your plans (no pun intended).

IMG_1267

(The kids made me also draw “Pepper” who is my parents crazy fat dog.)

The first step was to pencil a general sketch of how I wanted the chicken coop to look. While I didn’t have any formal plans, I had read enough on backyardchickens.com to get a rough idea of what I wanted.

I had just a handful of criteria that I wanted to incorporate into the building of this chicken coop.

  • We wanted to use 90% recycled material from my dad’s mini-farm / shop.
  • Amanda wanted an easy to access egg box.
  • The chicken coop needed to be self-contained and easy to move.
  • The chicken roost needed to be off the ground (due to rats etc.)

At any rate, after I drew my “plans” I started looking for material.

When I am perusing for material around my dad’s shop, there is never a shortage of good cut boards. In-fact I have this voice in my head (in my dad’s voice) that says “you just don’t throw away a good cut board!”

So I selected a number of previously used 2×4 soft woods (mostly pine) and some T1-11 siding that would hold up during the rainy Northwest winters. I also found some old cabinet door hinges and then went to work.

My basic dimensions were 3’x2’ roost with a 5’x3’ run. This gave me a combined 21 sq. ft.

I read that each chicken needed about 1 sq. ft. of roost space and around 4-5 sq. ft. of living space. This would put me in the 20 sq. ft. – 30 sq. ft. range.

So while the chicken coop seems a bit small, it actually meets the criteria for chickens that will free-range during the day time and roost in a closed area during the night. Again when building a DIY chicken coop, the choices is really yours to make (I don’t think the chicks care that much).

The first step was to dado blade my frame (I get it! . . . it’s way overkill for a project like this, but it gave me an excuse to stay in the shop a bit longer). :) 

Next came the frame assembly . . . The nice thing about using a dado blade set is that it should (in theory) square up nicely if its cut right. I would still recommend using a builders square before securing the frame together.

IMG_1156

IMG_1157

IMG_1159

IMG_1160

Again, keeping up with my manly way of doing these DIY projects, I used galvanized deck screws to secure the frame (with dabs of wood glue). I suspect this frame can hold up to a small hurricane.

After the left and right side of the frame were assembled, I placed 2×4 braces between the 2 sides to finish the basic “box” design.

IMG_1161

At this point, we contemplated the floor of the roost and I found an old table from a 1980’s RV that had a wood laminate top. My idea with using this was it would make cleaning chicken poo a little easier. So I cut some notches in the “table” to make the floor of the roost.

IMG_1166

IMG_1170

The nesting box is not included in the official space calculation, but ultimately I wanted it to be 3 separate 1 sq. ft. areas to allow 2 nesting boxes per chicken. Again, I think technically this is overkill, but since the overall chicken coop was 3 ft. wide, it worked out nicely this way.

IMG_1171

IMG_1172

At this point, I cut and attached the T1-11 siding to the outside of the frame.

The door to access the coop is just a basic 2×4 frame with construction braces to help make it ridged.

IMG_1174

IMG_1185

One nice feature is that I found these old vent covers and took extra time to WD-40 the gears to allow for easy closing during the winter, but also create 3 vent systems for the summer.

IMG_1190

Now if you ask me what I am most impressed with myself over, it is the roosting areas that are fabricated out of natural pine tree limbs.

I went to the neighbor’s yard who had some trees they needed trimming and removed some branches that were around 4 in in diameter. At this point I had to put my math hat on and use some basic geometry to cut the angles so that the tree branches would fit into their respective location.

Notice the angles I have them at, which left a nice center gap so the chicks can easily fly up to the roost without bumping their heads.

IMG_1183

IMG_1206

From there we painted the chicken coop a nice barn red with white accents and purchased a 25’x3’ roll of 1” chicken wire. These were the only 2 items we purchased (1 ga of paint and chicken wire). All other materials were salvaged from other projects. Total cost was under $40 for both items.

Naturally Mrs. Sunshine chose all the colors and did all the painting to make it pretty . . . guys with beards are practically incapable of making things pretty. From the pics below, its not wonder I love this gal so much!

IMG_1195

IMG_1192

The roof is a simple piece of ¼ ply wood with some Roll Roofing (shingles) to help seal it in.

IMG_1204

And this my friend . . . is how you build a DIY Chicken Coop!

Follow up to the coop design and what I learned after the fact . . . 

I am already thinking of some upgrades that would include automatic feeder systems and a light active door so “Mrs. Sunshine” can sleep in more.

The door, I made was 18″ wide (small enough for Mrs. Sunshine and her 3 minions to access). But when you are a 200+ LB almost 6′ tall bear with a beard  . . . it’s a bit of a tight squeeze. So making a bigger door would have been a bonus.

Stay tuned for post about the feeders and my door upgrades . . . Can you hear the “Tim the Tool-man” grunt . . . ?

IMG_1216

How do the chickens like it?

Honestly, I don’t think they care – they just poop all over it anyway. So I guess the next coop will be located at the back of the property and I won’t care how it looks.

 Hope you enjoyed!

IMG_1211

IMG_1218

Please click on this banner to help promote ClearSunshine.com!

One click on the banner = one vote! THANK YOU!!!

If you like what you just read please click to send a quick vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs- The best mommy blog directory featuring top mom bloggers
Share this Story

Related Posts

One Comment

  1. […] individuals are progressively more creative and funds saving by constructing the DIY Chicken Coop. These structures are simple to make and enhance the advantage of one’s home backyards. The […]

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

TMB-approved-200

Please click! A visit a day boosts my blog ranking at Top Mommy Blogs - The Best Mommy Blog Directory Ever!

Like Sunshine ?

@myclearsunshine

Sunshine In Your Inbox

Subscribe and get Clear Sunshine updates to your inbox!

Trending Right Now!