Sunday, June 5, 2016

Coop Build Part Two

Walls, Rafters and more

Well, it's now time for the walls, so in making the choice to build modular units, I decided each wall would be a 4' x 8' unit. The floor is a double unit at 8' x 8', and each gable end, though not rectangular, would still be a roughly 4' x 8' unit each.  I am sometimes thinking faster than I can write things down (which means I forget a lot of the ideas I have) so I naturally assigned a name to each unit. Yeah, a bit simple, but this way I would always know which wall needed work, and what parts went where.
I built this coop about 200 feet from the eventual placement site in our carport. I did this so I could work on the coop even when it was raining at the site. After I framed then skinned each wall unit with plywood, I painted each one with two coats of exterior paint. Inner side is white, outer side is light yellow. All exterior trim will also be white. I figured that it would be easier to paint while a 4 x 8 unit than in place and fighting ladders and stools. 
After the floor unit, there was:
  1. Pop Door Wall:
    All the parts associated with getting the chickens in and out are on this wall. (Doors are not cut out in this photo yet) We are automating the pair of doors, so there will be 12v. power, a single motor, and mechanical parts for this one. After looking at all the options on BYC, Pinterest and a fast Google search, I am going with a single motor and using a  power window regulator assembly aircraft cable and pulleys  to operate the doors, a 9 or 12v. timer and as simple a controller I get away with. All this powered by a small solar panel and battery array of no more than two deep cycle marine batteries. This is a gable end wall.
  2. Neighbors Wall:
    this one is pretty tame and easy, nothing but two windows @ 12" x 18" . All window and openings are fixed open, screened with 1/2" hardware cloth. The "winter" here in Hawaii is about 5 degrees cooler than summer so no real need for window shutters or closures. The humidity here however dictates the need for lots of ventilation. 
  3. Nest Wall:
    Nest Box and gear goes on this wall. A total of 5 nest boxes and 2 storage areas, one horizontal, 12" H x 12" W x 60" L and one vertical area that will be 24" H x 12" W x 12" L . All three areas will have hinged lids for access. This is a gable end wall. Both the Feed and Water collection/distribution is on this wall.                   
  4. The Clean Out Door Wall:
    This is not a wall in as much as it is two 4' x 4' swinging doors for cleaning out the coop. This is also the side where the roosts will be located. We are planning to have a tray under each roost for easy and quick clean up. The 'extra' framing in each door will be separated / cut long wise to allow the doors to open under the roof eave's overhang.
  5. North Gable Wall:
    Above the Nest Box Wall, this gable has a ventilation window, 12" X 18" at the peak. Rain comes from this direction so this vent will have an awning to keep the air flowing but the rain out. This is also the wall where the Water collection system starts. This also served as the pattern for the three open trusses between the two end gables.
  6. South Gable Wall:
    Above the Pop Door Wall it also has a ventilation window @ 12" x 18". Neither of these gables have the vents cut out yet, I waited until they were built in place. I braced all the openings with pre-painted 1" x 2" framing, then INstallationadded the 1/2" hardware cloth. This was inside the coop. On the outside, JoAnn and I wanted this coop to be 'Pretty' so it needed some gingerbread-esque trim.
  7. Trusses: 
The modular units of 8' means the trusses divide into the space at 24" on center.  I made copies of the trusses based on the Gable wall unit with the short vertical piece being a Clerestory wall with additional ventilation. Turns out this style is less clerestory than it is a monitor roof, but that is not really relevant to the chickens.

Next Post will cover installation of the coop!

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