I needed a place to keep the garden tractor, tools and other outdoor supplies. We also wanted to get a few chickens for some fresh eggs and a sorce of fertilizer and compost.
Something like this is what we had in mind.
I searched craigslist for inexpensive building materials. I didn't find much, but I DID find 6X6's that had been a sand box at a daycare center. They just wanted them gone, so I was happy to help them out! :-)
Due to size limitations between trees, and the available flat level spot we chose, we decided on 16' long and 8' deep. That would make a 6'x8' chicken coop on the one end, and a 8'X10' tool shed on the other. 48 square feet is just right for 12 chickens, just what we had in mind.
The 6X6's I got free, worked out perfect for the "foundations". Only a few slight adjustments to level it all out. It can "float" with the frost, and because there is no actual foundation, it doesn't add to the property taxes! :-)
Next, I needed the materials for the actual shed. I spoke with a farmer friend, and he put me on to something great!
The Amish saw mills in the area, cut furniture grade lumber for the Amish furniture makers. When they get a board that isn't up to furniture grade, it goes in the "outs" pile.
They sell the "outs" for 20 cents a board foot!
You get what ever is in the bundle. (Take it all). How ever many board feet they have bundled, what ever width, length, thickness....you take it all as it is.
When I called (yes, the Amish now have cell phones in some areas) they had one bundle of poplar "outs", 1100 board feet for $220.00 I borrowed the neighbors trailer and went right over. With my truck, and trailer both loaded, it still took 2 trips to get it all. Here is what I got for my money:
There were a few 2" thick boards, but not near enough for framing. There was anything from 6" wide, to 14" wide. The majority was 14' long, but some 12' and 10' as well. I decided to save the 2" thick boards for headers, and use the 1"X6" boards for framing. They were actually 1 1/4" thick and 6 1/2 wide. With a little extra bracing they are probably more than as strong as the pine junk you get at the big box stores!
As I sided the gable end on the coop, I decided to build the nest boxes too, so the end would be finished. The nest boxes are 14 inches wide, and about 12 inches deep. Here are some pics:
I added the rest of the rafters, then sided the other gable end, and back of the coop and tool shed.
Next, I started adding the batton strips and door trim.