The chicken coop was our first renovation project. We decided to save this hopeless looking structure because of its unique shape. It is a 12′ x 16′ structure with a 6.5′ clear ceiling. Prior to starting the construction of our new home, we relocated the coop from the west edge of the lawn to a temporary location at the south end of the pole shed. Our first goal was to stabilize and save the coop for later use and further restoration. The coop needed immediate attention due to the leaky roof and rotting side walls.
In the spring of 2001, Jesse worked with his little helpers to put on a new roof and replace the rotting side walls. As two farm kids, we valued the opportunity to involve the kids in these types of projects. At their ages (9, 6, and 3), the usefulness of their help was somewhat limited and most likely significantly lengthened the duration of the project. However, the sense of accomplishment and satisfaction they experienced by being involved and included was well worth any inconveniences.
After replacing the roof and the siding on the sides, we painted the coop to match the rest of the outbuildings. That summer (2001) we left the farm behind and moved to Sweden for a two-year expatriate work assignment with Jesse’s company. The picture below is how we left the coop.
We returned to the farm in the summer of 2003. Anxious to get ready for raising chickens, we resumed work on the coop in the spring of 2004. We first moved the coop to its permanent location in between the barn and pole shed to the south and placed it on a foundation of 8″ of river rock. On the inside of the coop, Jesse insulated and paneled the walls, and installed a Durarock concrete floor. With the assistance of our little helpers (now ages 12, 9 and 6), we painted the interior white. Jesse built hen boxes and a roosting pole for the chickens. The exterior on the entrance side was rebuilt, including the door. We saved and reused the original hinges and latch hardware. To improve ventilation, a variable speed vent fan was installed.
Just this past summer, we finally replaced the exterior siding on the back side of the coop and added an exit runway door at the rear of the coop. Jesse also replaced all the rotten rounded trim and then we freshened it up with a complete coat of fresh paint. I think we are finally done with this restoration…
SEE THESE OTHER POSTS ABOUT CHICKENS:
Keeping the Chickens Warm (Jan. 11, 2010)