Completed Habitat for Humanity Chicken Style

Taz tackles the task of building a chicken coup.

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Syka is a new settlement of primarily humans on the east coast of Falyndar opposite of Riverfall on The Suvan Sea. [Syka Codex]

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Habitat for Humanity Chicken Style

Postby Tazrae on November 26th, 2020, 2:16 am

Timestamp: 2nd of Fall, 520 A.V.


It was early on in the season and Tazrae wanted to make another addition to The Protea. She had chickens and either a milk cow or goats on order from Riverfall via James. Less worried about a cow or goats, Tazrae knew chickens were vulnerable and she needed some sort of coup for them. Now that she’d helped Randal with the deck, the Innkeeper fancied herself a carpenter. So, for her ten chickens, she’d decided to barter goods in trade – namely baked goods to the sawmill – for some raw lumber and to Juli at the mercantile for some of the mesh that kept small animals like chicken safe. She had left-over lumber from The Protea she planned on using, so all she had to buy outright was the fasteners in the form of a big bag of nails.

Her design was simple. She needed a shelter big enough for all the chickens to huddle into when it rained or the dark of the night. She thought about doing a miniature version of the Inn, but that wouldn’t be feasible for the chickens due to the Inn having so much open-aired space. Instead, she decided on a two-level raised coup that would have room enough for up to sixteen chickens.

She sketched out the design, deciding on dimensions with the main body of the coup being a six by four square box with a peaked roof to give the upper story lots of headroom. She could run perches through the main coup, then have extensions that flared out on the four-foot ends that would make up three next boxes on each short end. The nest boxes would have an angled roof that would flip up to make egg gathering easy. The front of the coup would have double doors that swung open for complete access and ease of cleaning.

The back of the coup would have one small chicken-sized door that would remain open and have a ramp leading down from the coup. The coup would be raised to keep the chicken coup out of the mud, provide airflow around it, and give the chickens space to move around underneath. Above each angle-roof nest box, she could have a small shuttered window that would be covered with the same screening as the run would have. The shudders could be opened on either side, allowing a breeze through for hot tropical nights.

The rest of the area for the chickens would be a six-foot-high series of six by six sections framed in the mesh. She thought that about three sections off from the chicken coup would work well to give the ten chickens she had planned enough space to roam around. A door into this screened run area would allow her access to clean or check chickens or even collect wayward eggs.

As she designed it, the whole place would be able to be lifted up, swiveled, and moved onto fresh soil when the chickens ate the grass down or denuded their run. That way old runs could be reseeded with grass and left to regrow while the chickens were tearing into a new space. The Gods knew The Protea had enough lawn to move the chicken coup just about anywhere, making sure it was shaded in the hottest part of the summer by the palms that scattered throughout the area.
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Tazrae
A warm welcome in paradise awaits you.
 
Posts: 426
Words: 500443
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
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Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

Habitat for Humanity Chicken Style

Postby Tazrae on November 26th, 2020, 2:18 am

Tazrae settled on her design, took a quick trip to the Mercantile to get the fasteners including multiple hinges for the human door and chicken coup doors. She worked a deal for the mesh to cover the run and the underside of the coup in, then started on her building when she returned. Taz found the easiest place to start was with the run itself. She laid out the six by six sections, cutting out eight main upright vertical supports, then cut fourteen boards that would serve as the roof and baseboards.

Next, she cut the two-foot sections to make the stand for the coup which ended up being five pieces. Laying the boards all out, she decided once she got the sections put together, she’d frame in the mesh first instead of trying to figure out how to attach the mesh to the panels after they were say fastened and forming a roof.

Tazrae’s arms ached from using her miter box and saw. It was a staple of her toolkit on the building, but it didn’t make it any easier that each beam, be it support or cross-member had to be cut by hand. She took her time, setting up a jig to make each cut easier and to rely less on individual measurements and more on everything is standard. Her world was full of loading a board, fit it into the jig, drag the saw across the board repeatedly, letting the saw’s own weight force its teeth down into the wood over and over again until the length was cut to the desired size. It was work that made her think, made her crawl into her own head, and question what she was doing.

She was a long way from home. But it seemed like with every cut of the saw, every growing piece of the pile, she was changing her idea of what home was. Her view was shifting from Riverfall to this beautiful savage place on the edge of the jungle where honestly no people should be. Yet they were making it work, carving out civilization in a place that felt so wild. And she marveled at it, that her hands could do so much, create something so important. Her two hands were building a sanctuary for some chickens to ensure their survival. Tazrae never thought she’d have other living things depend on her.

The outside ‘run’ took the least time. She had to pause halfway through her work when she realized she had no tin snips, and go find Randal to borrow a pair. But once she had the tool in hand, she was able to lay out the mesh on each section, cut it to the right size, and attach it to the frames.

Cutting the mesh was hard work. The tin snips were sharp, but they took real effort to bite through the wire mesh. She was glad she only had to cut it to length for each section, and not make multiple cuts to get the mesh to fit. Then, once she had each frame cut out – minus one section that would become the door – she took the staples and nailed them into the frame after laying the mesh out on each section. That stretched the mesh, pulled it tight, and secured the frames.

When each frame had its mesh, she began fitting each panel together to form the run itself. She did it in three sections, leaving two ends of the first section open. The center section fit to the first section neatly, and she nailed those together, making sure each frame attached to the other one squarely using a carpenter’s square from her toolkit.
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Tazrae
A warm welcome in paradise awaits you.
 
Posts: 426
Words: 500443
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

Habitat for Humanity Chicken Style

Postby Tazrae on November 26th, 2020, 2:19 am

Tazrae deliberately left one of the sections of the center cube unmeshed so she could somehow work out a door into the run. She decided as she was setting up all the rest of the panels and constructing the run that she’d make a door out of a frame inside of a frame, meshed of course, with a center bar and attached with hinges. So, when she had her run complete – save for the empty side that would affix to the coup itself – she stood at the empty mesh-less center right panel and measured it. She measured carefully, reset her jig, and cut out a smaller frame that would set neatly into the larger frame.

She added a supporting piece across the center, then meshed the whole thing.

Once that was done – her arm aching from pounding in staples with her hammer – she settled the door in place and marked with a bit of charcoal where the hinges would hang. Then she carefully began to pre-drill holes that she’d run the screws into that would hold the door. She did the same with the door, matching up the holes on the door frame with the holes on the actual structure. Then she wrestled the door into place, having to rough sand several spots to get a tight but smooth fit. Then she twisted the screws into each side until the hinges were supporting the door all on their own.

Next came the latch, which went on easier. It was a simple slide bolt that she had to drill multiple holes into the opposite frame and border from the hinges. The latch she located on the right side at her perfect height. She arranged the hinges and latch so the door would swing out, not in, so she wouldn’t trap herself in one section of the run or another by opening or closing the door. Opening outward gave her room to step in and gently nest the door behind her to clean, chase chickens, or collect wayward eggs.

When it was done, Tazrae was pleased. It looked square and almost professional.

But the coup came next. With the run a solid accomplishment, Tazrae tackled the coup. There was an odd feeling coursing through her as she checked her drawings repeatedly and began making cuts to form the main body of the coup. It was two and a half stories, set up on a platform with a pitched roof. Framing it out was fairly easy, so too was adding on the extensions that would be the next boxes.

Tazrae cut those sections, framed them on the main coup, then added a divided floor that would give the bottom of the box a roomy place for chickens to roam, then higher up perches across the front and back of the coup where the chickens could sleep. The perches inside were simple two by fours that had small ramps attached to them that the chickens could climb. She added the dividers inside the nest boxes after they were framed, then began work on the roof.
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Tazrae
A warm welcome in paradise awaits you.
 
Posts: 426
Words: 500443
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
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Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

Habitat for Humanity Chicken Style

Postby Tazrae on November 26th, 2020, 2:21 am

She’d watched Randal build her own roof, framing it out then covering it with the woven reed that made it watertight. Taz’s chickens got a solid roof. She didn’t trust a roof like the Protea had with her birds. She used three trusses across, setting them solidly against support beams. Once they were in place, she put on hinged roof boards that could be propped open to allow more airflow, then framed in the mesh windows on either side.

Once the windows were framed and meshed, she added a hinged shutter that could be swung back and forth, either opening the coup up or sealing it down in heavy rain. She framed in the big swing doors that would open up to clean the coup, then covered them in tiny slats that resembled siding from Riverfall.

Taz cut and framed the swing door that would open up to the run as well. It got matching slats to the big double doors on the opposite side. She sided the coup next, cutting each piece neatly and then nailing it into place. The door had a latch that would hook open or closed depending on the season, weather, and Tazrae’s need to contain the chickens. The front doors got a latch added as well. Then, once those doors were done, she began siding the rest of the building, neatly starting from the bottom and working her way up until the coup was completely enclosed front, sides, and back. She liked how it looked and how much safe space it was giving the chickens.

Once the siding was done, it was time to roof the nest boxes. Tazrae wanted the roof hinged so she could pull the nest box coverings up and out of the way to gather eggs without opening up the entire coup. This wasn’t an actual hard job since she’d already slanted the side of the nest box extensions so they were taller on the coup side than on the outside. She simply cut an oversized piece of wood that Lars made at the mill by peeling logs and gluing the peels together over and over until he had flat smooth wide planks of wood people could use to side with.

She measured carefully, cut the ‘roofs’ and then drilled for screws and fixed the roofs to the side of the coup. When she was done, she tested the roofs by flipping them up.. and noted immediately she’d need some sort of eyebolt and hook to keep the roofs held up while she gathered eggs. Taz ended up driving a nail into a piece of board and then using the nail puller on the end of the claw-footed hammer to bend the nail into a circle. She did this twice for each nesting box lid and then ended up pulling the nail that was now bent into a 0 and re-drove them into the roofs and the side of the coup.

From there, she attached a string to the 0 in the slanted nest box roof and ran it up through the 0 in the main body of the coup. She weighted the string with a rock she tied the strong on and figured out she could just pull the string and lift the lid… the weight of the rock was enough to hold it up as she gathered eggs.
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Tazrae
A warm welcome in paradise awaits you.
 
Posts: 426
Words: 500443
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

Habitat for Humanity Chicken Style

Postby Tazrae on November 26th, 2020, 2:22 am

Proud of herself for figuring out that little solution, Taz added the final touches onto the build by constructing the heavy frame the coup would rest on to keep the chickens out of the mud. When that was done, she moved the frame to where she wanted to have the coup set up, then moved the run over to where she could easily attach it to the coup itself. Once those two things were connected, Tazrae had to wait for the first able bodied person to happen along and help her lift the coup up onto its fame stand – where she could permanently attach it and the run together.

Once the coup was on its stand and nailed firmly in place where the run attached as well, Taz was ready to do more.

She took the remaining length of long straight board and made a ramp for the chickens so they could easily wander in and out of the coup to the ground level of the run. Then she hung some perches in the run in a swing-like fashion. And she ran a few perches across the run at her knee level. That made her happy because it meant the chickens could use more than just the ground space. They could use the unused space in the upright vertical part of the run.

When Tazrae felt completely done, she opened a can of oil that Juli had provided at the Mercantile. She pulled out a paintbrush from her art kit, and dipped it into the oil. She proceeded to oil every inch of the wood on the run and coup in order to seal it from the rain. She oiled the coup itself, all the perches, doors, both inside and out, and the ramp. Then when she was done, Taz took a big cloth burlap bag of shavings she’d gotten at the mill and scattered them inside the coup floor and layered the shavings deep in each nest box.

It was definitely ready for chickens. Taz was happy about that fact too because she was more than ready to have fresh eggs, chicks, and the additional company of hens to keep her company at The Inn. Juli promised Taz that James would bring her back a nice selection of young well-laying hens when he returned next from Riverfall. The Innkeeper couldn’t wait to meet her new flock.

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Word Count: 2649
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User avatar
Tazrae
A warm welcome in paradise awaits you.
 
Posts: 426
Words: 500443
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)

Habitat for Humanity Chicken Style

Postby Tazrae on April 25th, 2021, 8:53 pm

Tazrae-

Planning +5, Logic +2, Architecture +5, Drawing +1, Carpentry +5, Body Building +4, Endurance +2, Mathematics +2, Painting +1

Planning: Designing A Chicken Coup, Architecture: Building for Chicken Needs, Drawing: Blueprint of a Chicken Coup, Planning: Making Mobile Structures, Mathematics: Measuring Wood For Cutting, Bodybuilding: Pounding Nails, Staples, and wiring frames, Architecture: Planning Doors, Access, and hinged items for easy cleaning of a chicken coup, Painting: Adding oil to seal wood to protect it from weather.

Expense: Nails 5sm/lb = 4lbs = 2gm
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User avatar
Tazrae
A warm welcome in paradise awaits you.
 
Posts: 426
Words: 500443
Joined roleplay: May 3rd, 2020, 2:02 pm
Location: Syka
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Plotnotes
Medals: 2
Mizahar Grader (1) Syka Seasonal Challenge (1)


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