Let me say first, I have no formal construction training or anything of the like. I have helped build several structures, decks, and even an odd fence or two. So, it really makes my day when I have a project that I can work with and build upon my construction skills.
This weekend we decided to take on part of a project that has been lingering for some time now. Our chickens have their coop and attached run. They also have access to the side and back yards through a second man door in the back of the run. Although the back yard has a five-foot-high chain link fence, we have had to resort to using a temporary fence on the size yard to keep the chickens from free ranging in the front yard where they could possibly get into the road, and then also to reduce the chances of roaming dogs from harming them.
We started construction on a fence section to replace a temporary fence running from our home to the chicken run. This fence will be about six feet high and serve as a permanent barrier to the front yard. We are also putting a gate in this section so that we can get our small lawn tractor through to the front yard for mowing and other chores.
In respect to our efforts today, we managed to set all the large posts in the ground by first digging holes and then using a fast set concrete product to secure them in the ground. After this had set, we started construction on the gate. This was constructed with treated 2×4 lumber. In hindsight, I really wish that I had just used #2 untreated 2x4s as they are much lighter and could be painted for weather resistance. As it stands now, our gate weighs about 70 pounds. If this proves to be too heavy for the existing hinges, I will probably salvage those boards and remake the gate.
The anchored posts will be attached at the ground to landscape timbers that allow for wire to be secured at the bottom. I really like the screws pictured here as they are long enough to attached the timbers to the posts securely and because they do not require any predrilling. For now, we have only completed the gate, but as soon as we have our wire delivered we can complete this section of our project and move to the other side of the run.
The whole process with my chicken construction projects have been fairly smooth and simple in concept. If you plan on undertaking anything similar, I say go for it. If you have basic hand tools, a drill, and a circular saw, you can really build most anything. Do a little research, secure some experienced help, and go for it! In ground posts need a hole dug, a level, some fast setting quickcrete poured in around the post, and some water to pour on top of the concrete mix. I opt to poke and tamp the mixture a bit after its wet, but I have never had an issue with just wetting it and letting it set.
If you have any up coming projects that you’d like to share please do!