Pallet Chicken Coop

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Since the pallet duck house build was a success, we decided to move our egg slaves into the yard this winter and build them a simple coop. The one thing missing in my opinion in a lot of pallet builds is insulating and outside finishes. So here is our version of a pallet chicken coop.

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So I spent a couple days gathering needed supplies, and the weather was finally nice enough to get started, we decided to build the coop against the fence by the gate, it gets sun first thing in the morning before anywhere else in the yard.

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I laid the base down to see how much of the raspberry bushes I needed to cut back

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So I cleared out some of the canes and mowed the area down

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I picked up some piers the other day

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Of course the turkeys had to come see what all the commotion was about.

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I set the piers on the ground

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And grabbed the door frame from the greenhouse I had taken down to use as a support base for the pallets.

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and screwed two of the pallets down to the base

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My wife and I then started standing up pallets and screwing them down into the base pallets

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The ends we stood up in place and leveled the top with the front and back pallets and screwed them into the sides

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I grabbed the chainsaw

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and cut out a doorway

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It didn’t look to bad!

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The next day I trimmed back some more of the doorway.

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and framed it out with some scrap 2×4 I had laying around

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My daughter was getting rid of a old side dresser she had, so not wanting to waste anything, I decided to repurpose the drawers.

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So I cut out a opening on each end and put in a filler piece of wood.

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and test fit the drawers

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These will be used as a nesting box on one end and a poop clean out on the other, just slide them out and grab a egg or empty out the poop from under their roosting area.

I also noticed the pallets weren’t lining up properly along the front.

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so I screwed down a scrap piece of wood to level it out

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My shadows give me 2 wings up so far lol

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So I stuck some filler pieces on top of the drawers as well to keep the insulation from falling into the drawers

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and we hung some plastic on the inside to keep it from falling through the larger gaps

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I picked up some mulch master, which is chopped straw, baled straw is next to impossible to find right now.

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and started filling in the gaps

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No one light a match!

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I grabbed some shingles

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and nailed down my starter course

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I grabbed my shingling jig we had used on the barn and shed, it’s just a couple scraps of T&G pine we had screwed onto a piece of 1″ material and screwed some lips on the bottom.

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The lips on the bottom grabs the bottom of the course below and you just shingle right along the top of the jig, no measuring, no fuss, no muss.

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That is until you drive a brad nail through your finger and your wife and daughter flip out like you just chopped your arm off, lol, my daughter is still convinced I’m gonna get tetanus.

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After cleaning up the blood and getting bandaged, I started back on my shingling.

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Not to shabby, when I’m done, you won’t even know it’s pallets.

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The egg drawer is ready to start collecting.

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The next day I started on the other side, this drawer will be their poop clean out.

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I stopped when I got to the top, I still wasn’t sure how I was going to finish off the ends yet.

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So now I had both ends shingled, it is important to make it look visually level, there is a difference between looking right and actually being right as far as level. Perception truly influences what our mind thinks as correct, I didn’t use a level during any part of this, if I was building something that was structural I would be concerned about true level, but since this is just a simple chicken coop, here is how to make it look right.

Take a push pin and stick it into the bottom of the shingles on one end and attach some string.

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and do the same with the other side.

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This is our “level” line, you can see how far the right side of the base is slanted downwards and how far off the string is from the pallets.

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So I nailed down a starter course, you can see how much the doorway appears canted from the shingles.

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One of the girls was not impressed by my performance 🙁

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So I continued shingling away and the farther I get away from the bottom, it is starting to level out

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The doorway is still distracting to the eye, making the brain think, that doesn’t look right.

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By trimming with pine and making that level with the shingles on the top and bottom makes up for that keeping everything in straight lines.

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The courses on the ends and the front match up, completing the illusion that everything is fine.

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I still needed to figure out what I was doing for a roof, not sure if I want to do a flat roof or a pitch like on the duck house.

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I started shingling the back side the next day, the way I had set the base on the cement piers, I couldn’t go all the way to the ground with the shingles, so the back is pretty open.

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I had just about got it done and was going to start on the roof, when it started lightning and down pouring, so that wrapped up my day.

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When the rain finally stopped I finished shingling up the back of the coop.

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and grabbed some 2×4’s and made a little stub wall.

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hmm, not sitting right

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One of the pallets was warped a little.

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so I grabbed my trim saw

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All set, you can see in the background the back pallets are even worse, I decided not to trim those because of several large nails in it, it would be a very bad day for me if I tried cutting that.

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So I screwed it down and continued shingling.

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For the back I used the high point in the middle as level and just shimmed the ends with scrap shingles and screwed the ends down to secure it.

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and shingled it the rest of the way, the turkeys in the background were like, you done yet?

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I then took my utility knife and trimmed the edges of the shingles.

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I put in a filler piece on the end, I measured up from the last row of shingles we had nailed down to make sure it visually looked right.

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and did the same on the other side

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and shingled them

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I trimmed the extra

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I had picked up some drip edge, ignore the pug, he’s a suck up and just wants some food.

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and nailed it down on the front, back and sides

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I framed out a small roost for them above the poop clean out drawer.

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I needed to get some roofing,and decided to grab it off our old coop.

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I quickly screwed down the metal roof, now just need to throw a door on and stain the whole thing, and then we are done!

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to be continued with a complete price break down.

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Our family relocated to Maine 17 Years ago to get to a simpler way of life after the birth of our daughter. We decided to document everything we do about six years ago so we could share our projects with people who are also looking to slow down a little. This site developed from that goal of sharing knowledge.

37 COMMENTS

  1. Fun, did you build perches or other furniture inside the hen house? Would you consider a hinged door that allows you to gather eggs and clean the house? We had a hen house when we were kids and I doubt that it was insulated and I remember how cold it got during the winter. 🙂 Bart

  2. Hi there!!! I am currently in the process of building my chicken coop and using your complete method! I am so very excited to get it finished..

    Can you please tell me– I see that you used the old roofing from your previous coop… did you place any roofing flat along the top of the pallets UNDER the sloped roofing? Did you use any chicken wire or anything?

    My main concern is just with moisture getting into the coop but I can understand leaving it open for ventilation etc.

    Please let me know! I would greatly appreciate any response you give!

  3. I copied KVR’s build also. One thing I added were a pair of 2×4 beams across the top under the roof to hang a waterer and feeder. I noticed the chickens use these as additional roosting space!

    • Hey Tod, I didn’t, I left the gaps so anything that falls through I can rake out from underneath in the back, a cheap piece of remnant laminate flooring would be helpful for cleaning if you decided to add something

  4. I love your delicate trim work (with the chainsaw)! That is hilarious. I’m researching coops and you do make this look super easy. Would it be easier and/or cheaper to get plywood for the outside & then paint it? (I’m *very* inexperienced at building, btw, and certainly don’t have an air-powered nail gun!)

    Also, do you ever have ducks wanting to use the chicken coop and vice versa?

  5. I like this! I am stuck with 13 pullets and no new coop bc my help bailed on me. I have pallets and limited building experience. What are the interior dimensions? Do you have to replace the staw? I like this idea of eco-insulation, but does it not get wet and moldy? Did you already have the shingles or is that factored into your cost?