Thursday, May 9, 2013

Souped Up Coupe

This morning was "Modify the Coupe Day."  Magic Man decided we needed to enhance the "Coop de Ville," making it maintenance friendly.  Step 1, add a hatch system and Step 2, an improved feeding station.  For someone who groaned "Oh dear Lord!" when he first heard the coupe coop idea, he's taken quite a liking to the concept.

You may have seen the first posting of the Coop de Ville, in its early, but livable stage.  But here's what we did today.

Magic Man decided on a "hatch system" that 1) offers protection (we have raccoons, wild cats, and 'possums roaming about the 'hood) and 2) provides easy "open and close" access between the coop and run.  

The Hatch is two part system, one hatch attaches to the coop and another to the run.  The hatches can be coupled securing the living quarters together or quickly decoupled to ease cleaning and relocating the quarters in the yard.

Installing half of the Hatch System to the coop
Hatch closed

Hatch opened

Top view of the coupled hatch, now attached to the coop and the run.  The doors slip down closing either section.
The best part about this system is we can quickly close one or both sections, locking the girls in either half.

The next modification was the feeding system.  Every morning required cleaning the poopy feeder, sighing over wasted feed, and adding a fresh supply of feed.  We repeated this task each evening.

Then we found this feeding station on Pinterest.  We made a few tweaks, using 3" PVC and parts rather than the suggested 2" and we secured the feeders at the base instead of tying them to the walls.   Also, our feeders are 24" tall, purely a cosmetic choice, shorter than 4' tall feeders. 

Magic Man cut three holes in the trunk area, just large enough for the PVC tubing to slide through.  We attached the WYE and bases inside the coop and secured them to the floor.   And finally filled the feeders.  The material cost for three feeders was $30.  A fourth can be added for $7 for the extra WYE and Caps.  Not a bad deal, value-wise.  We can fill the feeders to capacity and the girls will be happy for a week.

Feeding Stations inside the Coupe

Feed Filling Tubes, easily accessed
Wow, what used to take us a good 30 minutes each morning, is now accomplished in about 10 minutes.
Finished Coupe, today

One problem we did not foresee.  What will granddaughter do?  She knows we carry feed to the chickens each morning and battle the chickens to move to greener patches.  She'll have to accept the fact she has more time to play in the morning before school.

Care to guess what the next addition will be?

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