Thursday, June 7, 2012

Chicken Tractor

It has been a frustration to me that I start a project and it takes FOREVER to get it done. The little chicken coop that should have taken several days took at least ten, not counting days where I simply couldn't get any work done on it at all. Now I am working on the chicken tractor. I had spent a great deal of time trying to make a decision on the size and style. Researched the internet. Read articles. Got really, really confused. Finally I became aware that I was just psyching myself out. I made the decision to down scale and make the project less intimidating. I am hoping to finish up tomorrow. That is, finish up on the worlds smallest chicken tractor. It measures just 32 inches across. 50 inches long and just 28 inches tall. It will be home to the buff orpingtons. No doubt they will outgrow it in a week or so. One of these days I will have to figure out a method for building something the exact size that I need. I have no idea how I will do that. The chickens have been fairly forgiving to my inadequacies. My shortsightedness. My inexperience. I am thankful. When I get them in the tractor and they get to feel real grass under their feet, I think they will be thankful as well. The little chicken tractor is built on an A-frame design. Looking at internet pictures, it seemed the simplest, most effective use of my materials. Then, came the harsh reality that to build to my diminutive scale, I would be cutting some weird angles. Some were weird angles with notches. It was a complete and massive pain in the ass. I finally did the smart thing and gave up... that is gave up on all the measuring and trying to use the speed square and all that crap. I finally just drew a picture of what the end piece should look like. Made a connecting line for the hypotenuse of my triangle, then got out a piece of cardboard and made a template. Since it was made of corrugated cardboard, the template was a bit weebly-wobbly, but it worked. Tomorrow with great luck, we will get the roof on then attach the chicken wire. Then make a door so I can reach into the yard portion of the tractor. Then I will just have to add the chickens. It will be a great moment. No doubt similar to walking the red carpet at the academy awards. Then I will have to figure out what to do next. Considering that chickens seem to be like certain species of fish and grow to the size of their enclosure, or so it seems, I will need to start on another chicken tractor right away.. something LARGER! I have not given up on a small hay barn. It will soon need to be started. I am working my way up to such an intimidating project, but first I have to finish my tiny little chicken tractor. There is a natural progression to these things. Like wading into a cold lake. You just can't rush these things. Louie

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