Can anyone suggest where I might be able to get a mechanism for opening
and closing a small door. The door will probably be about 12" square and
can be hinged so that it swings like a full-sized door so the effort to
open and close it should be quite small.
It needs to be secure against small animals (foxes etc.) when closed.
I want to operate it electrically so it can be opened and closed at
set times (with a time clock from the mains) or possibly be driven by
Searching for door opener only produces electronics for door latches
and/or garage door openers.
I have thought about this but have always worried about door failing or a
hen being shut out overnight.
This time of year our hens could go into the house any time between 7pm and
9pm. I was thinking of some sort of perch sensor to detect hens being
inside... but this got to complicated.
Another tack is to raise the hen house, see H-F Wittingstall (sp?) Riverside
Cottage books, or Bunny Guinness. These seem to work in France but it does
make cleaning and collecting eggs more difficult.
No system is 100% foolproof. You might die before they go in and then what
would happen :-)
Ours aren't going in until well after nine at the moment, we're in
It's only suitable for small coops. I can't see why they should make
anything else difficult.
Another method (this should be on s.a.p.) is to have the coop well off the
floor with a pole sticking out at right angles to the opening. Hens can jump
or fly onto the pole to get access to the coop, the fox can jump but can't
get into the coop from the pole because it can't hold on to it. I've tried a
version of this, it works but now that I have the Eglu it wouldn't be easy.
Having just replaced a Honeywell CH valve motor, I think one of these might
be OK. The torque is large, they rotate very slowly exactly 90 deg when
the mains is applied and are spring loaded to return when its off. Gotten
from any plumbing shop for a few quid or even less on the electronics
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