Changing the basic geometrical shape (from a square to a circle), took this “Cool Coop” from great to awesome! Continue reading as Julie Felton shares her journaled vision and construction of this month’s featured coop…
March 21, 2012
Here’s a little model of a chicken coop I designed. Making it a circle was a bit ambitious (to say the least), but I think I’ve figured out how to make it work. I need to get crackin’ on this because my little chick babies will need a house in a month or so! It will be 18″ off the ground with a caged area below. There will also be a caged run.
March 27, 2012
My coop is unusual because it is circular. This poses some unique construction challenges. Oh sure. A rectangular coop would be much easier to build… but it wouldn’t be nearly as stylish. Not only will this coop have style, but it will also be very functional. I had a difficult time digging up circular building design information. So, I had to get creative and make a few things up. My plans are all down on paper, though they do change as I work.
As you can see, the base of the coop is complete. The rectangular section adjoining the circle will be the nesting box area and will be accessible from the outside. The coop will have one curved door and two curved windows. Originally, the door and windows were going to be flat… again, an easier option. I decided that since I was going all out with this coop, the doors and windows needed to fit the theme.
Later today, I will cut a chicken door from the floor that will also serve as a ramp. I am also going to cover the floor with vinyl flooring (for easier cleaning, I hope).
April 17, 2012
The chicks are now four weeks old, which is also how long I’ve been working on their coop. Of course, I haven’t been working on it eight hours a day, seven days a week. I work from home as a graphic artist, so my first priority is my work. As tempting as it is to skip out of work to finish the coop, I focus on my work first, coop second. Although, they’re calling for rain today, so I might sneak outside for a few hours and work on siding the rest of the coop. I can work inside while it rains. Right?
As you can see in the bottom photo, the coop looks complete. Well, it’s not! Three quarters of the siding is up, which only makes it look like it’s complete. I also have to do the trim work, fence in the bottom, add a ramp, complete interior details, add screens, install a roost, and other things I can’t remember right now. The details are the fun part. I’ll tell you what isn’t fun – cutting (and re-cutting) oddly shaped framing pieces. Cutting the curve with a little jigsaw is no picnic either. It wasn’t the right tool for the job, but it worked. The framing made so much more sense on paper.
I still have some other problem areas that I need to address, but I’m confident that the solutions will come to me. That’s happened several times while building the coop. The first issue was finding the perfect spot for it. I thought it would be in the woods near the house. Because of potentially dangerous trees, I decided to change the location. Nothing seemed right. Then, suddenly, I KNEW exactly where it had to go. Other problems and solutions presented themselves during construction. When a problem comes along, here’s what I do… I plant it in my mind and let it simmer while I work on other things. After a while, the solution comes to me. Sometimes it’s not even close to what I expected. Quite amazing!
April 30, 2012
I see the light at the end of the tunnel! The coop is not 100% complete, but it is ready for the chicks. I still have a few cosmetic details to complete (trim, sealant, a little paint). There’s also the little issue of building their run. I cut the lumber yesterday. Now, I need to assemble it. It should be a fairly quick project, unlike the coop.
Thanks Julie for sharing your coop construction with our Community! Your set-up is wonderful and truly an inspiration to think outside the (square) box!
You can view more of Julie’s homestead and projects at these links:
Do you have a “Cool Coop” you’d like to share? Email me at: RNickols@communitychickens.com