I talked about the pallet coop idea in the carpool so much (yeh, I'm really fun at parties too) that I had everyone on the lookout for good pallets in the trash that I could grab up. I also had a donation of old lumber going as well. We collected 10 nice pallets, a few pieces of free plywood, several landscaping blocks, some nailed together 2x4's that needed to be pried apart and in the shed we had some leftover hardware cloth, a gallon of outdoor paint, metal roofing screws and some other odds and ends. We had almost all the supplies we needed; my dad and husband ran to Menards to pick up some nice metal roofing sheets, a latch for the door and a few 2 x 4's for the roof. Total bill was around $100.
They started by laying down some landscaping block to have a level and perfectly squared structure slightly raised off the ground to save from rot and water damage. Four pallets were laid on top of the block and then plywood on top of those. Four pallets were then placed vertical for the walls. We joined this coop with our existing coop to save on having to make another wall and the hardware cloth in place gives them light and airflow during the summer. In the winter we will fabricate a temporary wall to close this in so the coop isn't drafty.
|Building a pallet coop|
We (and by 'we' I mean 'they' while I watched and took pictures) then took one of the pallets and turned it the opposite way so it would stand taller and we could later cut it at an angle to support the roof.
|Really useful nail gun in action|
|Floor in place and 2 out of 3 walls ready in the Pallet Coop|
To be honest I really don't know the full details of how the coop was built other than it was my idea and after some sort of magic it all came together and looks great. It has 3 walls and the fourth wall is the hardware cloth from the existing coop. 9 pallets were used total leaving space for a small door. There is a long overhang in the front for some protection from the elements and because it didn't seem like a good idea to try to cut the roofing sheets. Hardware cloth was used to enclose the front of the coop under the roof where it was left open for ventilation and also around the coop my husband dug down about 6" and lined the openings of the pallets with hardware cloth to keep any critters from making a life out of living under it. The coop structure was built in a day and the details were finished up about a week later taking a few hours. The coop was actually finished and the chicks were moved into their home as I was counting between contractions waiting to go to the hospital the day my daughter was born. The coop was complete and chicks moved by 6:00 pm and my daughter was born at the hospital an hour away at 10:00 pm. Cutting it pretty close I'd say. So this coop was actually built about 2 months ago, I've just been to busy too get it up online.
We had plans of making a small run in the front with some old fencing from a dog kennel, but haven't completed that project yet, they seem to be doing just fine free ranging for now. Here are some more pics as it was being built and the finished project:
|Cheapest coop ever. All this for under $100|
|Almost finished. Added a 6" board along the hardware cloth so we could add in pine shavings|
|Love the metal roof. Looks good, lasts forever. Worth the money.|
|Finished the hardware cloth, painting and doors right before we |
headed to the hospital for the birth of our second daughter