Designing The Ideal Pigeon Loft

When it comes to loft design there are many aspects to consider, What is your budget? How much space have you got, so how big are you going to build it ? Don't upset your neighbors they can be very awkward if they want to be, so make a nice tidy job of it, make it beautiful, you will spend many hours in it and around it.

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Aviary:
An aviary is very useful if incorporated onto the end of the loft, It would enable your stock birds to get plenty of fresh air and also take a bath. Some set-ups now use an aviary on the young bird loft so the young birds can have fresh air and sun all day long


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Before you start to build your loft sit down and make drawings of how you would like it to look and most importantly how it will function.
Try not to cut any corners buy skipping things, at the end of the day you will regret it.
Construction: To start make sure you have a firm base to build on a lot of heavy timber will soon begin to show its weight.
Frame Work
8cm x 5cm (planed) timber is ideal this will provide a very strong structure. 
Roof Trusses:
If you are constructing a tiled roof you will need to use 10cm x 4cm (sawn) timber, a lot of weight from the tiles will need plenty of support. When fixing your trusses make sure they are fixed no more than 400mm apart this will give solid support for the tiles.



 

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Trapping:
Remember when designing your loft consider how to get your  birds into the clock in the quickest possible time.
My advice would be to have open doors or windows for the old birds and stall traps for the young birds. With the new technology you now have electronic clocking systems where by the pigeon wears a special ring that is automatically clocked when it stands over the sensor on the stall trap. The use of this system is not allowed in all countries.

Unikon:
Electronic Clocking Systems
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Joists:
A tiled roof is a heavy load to support, it would be better supported by using a second frame of 8cm x 5cm timber attached all the way around the top main frame, this will stop any sagging above door and window the openings.
Cladding:
The front and sides of the loft should be constructed with a good quality shiplap, this is expensive so the back can be made up with sheets of weather proof 8-10mm plywood  as long as it is not to obtrusive, remember the neighbors, don't forget to treat the timber with several coats of a good preserver\stain. You can also use plastic shiplap this makes a fantastic covering because its virtually maintenance free, just a quick wash over now and again, the only draw back I find with it is, because its normally white it is very reflective in the sun.


Floor:
The frame work of the floor needs to be strong so construct with 8cm x 5cm sawn timber, fix to this a smooth faced 8mm ply this will make it easier to scrap the floor clean. You will find your floor much stronger if you space the floor joists 300mm apart.
Ventilation:
The circulation of fresh air is very important, you need to position your vents so that air flows in and the stale air is drawn out. This is when a tiled roof has its benefits a vent positioned at each gable end of the roof will allow the air to flow right through the loft if you have vented roof tiles the air flow will draw the stale air from the floor and out through the vented roof tiles. Avoid creating draughts on the birds.


The above and below pictures show lofts designed and built at the Buitenhuis factory in Holland
Telephone: 0031-525-683895

   

Where do you stop? put your hand in your pocket and see how much change you have got!
Building a loft is a very expensive, you can only do what you can afford so don't be disappointed if it doesn't look like the ones on the right. These are professionally built and cost a lot of money. I have seen these type of lofts at Buitenhuis in Holland and they are built with today's modern racing in mind, everything is thought of in the manufacture of these lofts. Magnificent they are but you can still build one with the same functionality as these and that's what is most important.

 

This is a view of my young bird loft, this loft has 3 sections and is 5:5 metres long, 2:2 metres wide and 2:2 metres in height. The loft cladding is solid plastic shiplap and the traps are made from a tough polycarbonate. When the birds arrive from racing they are made to go into the loft through the stall traps, this saves time when racing. You can remove the race rubber from the bird whilst in the trap. Quick & no need to chase the pigeon inside the loft.


Young bird loft built above stock loft, The aviary for the stock is on the end.

My Lofts.gif (53056 bytes) The main racing loft is in the background, it is 9 metres long and 2 metres wide. It has 3 sections, 2 for widowhood cocks and the middle section is for the widow hens. In the hens section are 2 purpose built cages, with 18 box type perches, the floors of the cages large square wire grills so they do not stand in their droppings  also they do not like to stand on them because the holes are quite large, so they stay on the perch which also helps with them not pairing. 

 

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