Thursday, June 7, 2012

Transport Crate Build

Finally got off my butt yesterday and built some crates to transport the chickens to the processor (tomorrow). It was a little harder to get started than I expected because 10 days ago I cut the tip of my thumb really bad on the table saw. Hence I have been a little leery to use any saws at all much less its difficult to do anything without using your thumb. Anyhow, here is what I ended up with.

I had to do this job on the cheap cause I am broke. I had purchased the sheet of 7/16" OSB and four 2x4's a week or two ago when I had a few bucks. I was going to buy a bundle (50) of 1/4x1-1/2x48" lath for the slats but decided to use some leftover scraps of 5mm plywood I had from a previous job. I had 3 odd shaped pieces that I thought would be plenty but wound up short by a bunch and had to tear into a good sized 1/3 sheet of the same material. I was surprised by how many slats were needed for 3 crates.

The basic size is 24x32" so that I could get all 6 top and bottom pieces from a single sheet. For the 2x2 vertical supports I ripped a couple of the 2x4's in half and cut them 11-1/2" long (6 per crate). And the slats are 1-1/2" wide by 24" for the ends and 32" for the sides. There is about 5/8" gap between the bottom and the first slat so that I can hose them out and allow stuff to flow out. I also scabbed a couple of 2x2 on the bottom so that they can be stacked without hitting the hardware. Of course as usual I had to glue and screw everything. The slats are glued and stapled with two 1" staples on each vertical support.

I continued on the cheap with all the "hardware" by using stuff I already had laying around. The only thing I had to buy were the hinges and I opted to use one each instead of a pair and saved $5. The wood latch is just a piece of the slat plywood that pivots on a screw. And the handles are just some small pieces of rope with a knot on each end.

The paint was just to make hosing them out easier and make them last a little longer. OSB doesn't fare too well in the weather. All in all, not to bad of a job on a budget. The plastic crates available on the internet are ridiculously priced around $100 or so. I am taking about 22-24 chickens to the processor tomorrow so I figured that 3 crates would be enough as they should comfortably hold 8 chickens each.

Today I am withholding all food from the chickens to clean them out before processing. It was nice to have a break from moving the hoop house and feeding them. All I had to do was fill the water bucket. They kinda looked at me expectantly and were a little confused why I didn't move them to fresh grass. I hope the roosters enjoyed their last meal. I know I will enjoy my first chicken dinner this weekend.

1 comment:

  1. Awesome idea Dave i followed this plan except I changed out the side slates with reclamied pallet wood that I had lying around and used regular plywood in place of the osb. Love the idea of cutting the tops and bottoms to 32" to get three per sheet of plywood. Made 15 of these I have 100 chickens going to butcher in two weeks. And online crates are insanely expensive.