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Author Topic: DIY pig arks  (Read 17480 times)


  • Joined Apr 2010
  • Cambridgeshire
    • Hempsals Community Farm
DIY pig arks
« on: February 03, 2011, 10:31:47 am »
I'm looking at getting/making some pig arks and was wondering if anyone has any experience of making them using the half rounds of galvanised roofing.

The internet only seems to have descriptions of DIY wooden ones and I'm wondering if there's a reason for that!
Voss Electric Fence


  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2011, 10:55:31 am »
Remember that any pig ark will need to be moved to fresh ground every so often. If it is all in one piece, you would probably need a tractor/loader to move it around, especially if it has a solid floor. If no floor (depending on your ground) you could probably have four men/four corners and lift it.

Ours is made of wood, it is screwed togther, not nailed and comes apart in sections, so can easily be stored away and trundled off in the weelbarrow (one section at a time) to the new paddock. We do need a floor as well, very heavy clay up here.

Fowgill Farm

  • Joined Feb 2009
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2011, 10:57:31 am »
Thats because galvo ones are noisy when it rains and cold in winter and bake your pigs in an oven in summer!!
You can insulate the outsides with bales or carpet to stop all of the above. Wooden arks are warm in winter, cooler in summer. And unless you ground is very dry and no chance of flooding you'll need a floor to factor in. Galv sheets are tres expensive (as all metal products are these days look at scrap!) so unless you can get your hands on some gratis or cheap. Everyone has their personal preference and i'm sure someone will be along to tell you how they made theirs with galv sheets. I prefer & use wood.


  • Joined Sep 2010
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2011, 11:07:02 am »
They need to be fairly sturdy as pigs do like to destroy as a hobby.

If you want to move the ark around, when you put the front and back timber panels on put a long piece of wood left to right across the front and another across the back. This can then be used as handles to help pick up and move the ark (with help!) without having to dismantle.

On the rear panel put a drop down hatch on so you can take a peek inside from the rear if necessary.

I've found this website for you explaining how to build. I think this is the type you want:



  • Joined Apr 2010
  • Cambridgeshire
    • Hempsals Community Farm
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2011, 11:59:33 am »
OhLaLa, that site looks like just what I was after, thanks! I can go and compare prices to the flat pack kits now...

Re: wooden arks, the DIY ones on the 'net all look a bit flimsy - seeing what ours did to the well built stable they were in last year I can't imaging fence panels lasting any time at all!

I've got loads of left over carpet and underlay from renovating the farmhouse, so will definitely go with the idea to isulate with that.


  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2011, 03:04:45 pm »
We bought one from Pig Paradise - it's had 7 years of weaners and looks much the same as it did new. Not cheap, but could be replicated.


  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Devon - EX39 5RF
    • Ford Mill Farm
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2011, 04:02:33 pm »
You definitely get what you pay for.  Well worth getting the best quality ark, or use the best quality materials.   

You just have to imagine the worst damage a pig could do to something,  and then buy or build something bigger or better.  :love: :pig: :love:
Pedigree GOS Pigs and Butchery for Smallholders.


  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Anglesey
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2011, 05:43:00 pm »
I built one a while back using curved galv sheets Only used them as I got them for free really. By the time I'd bought the ply for the ends and timber for framing it I spent nearly as much as I could have bought one for. It is very sturdy however and should last a lifetime. I mounted it on 3 x 3 timbers so I can pick it up with pallet forks on the back of the tractor so doesn't matter that it weighs a lot.


  • Joined Nov 2009
  • East Sussex
    • OaklandsPigs
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2011, 06:37:53 pm »
We probably have every type of pig ark.

For weaners to fattening - most will do the job fine, even the cheaper ones.

For breeding sows, farrowing and boars, strength is everything :
- 3 sows trying to come out of an ark for food at the same time can easily remove the front.
- Sows rubbing on the edges to itch that scratch can pull out ply quite easily
- That urge to chew can easily decimate 6*1 flooring if they find an edge free !

Of all our arks:
The Carbery ark has been the most resilient - two here are as good as the day they arrived but around £500 each with no base.
Pig Paradise - good quality ark if you keep it proofed.  Ours are now wearing out but have been here 13 years !
Golden river - great for sow and litters, not so good for lots of sows, front have been taken off by sows
Half round tin with wood ends (bought second hand from lots of places)  - last well if you like doing regular repairs (and if you are not after something looking pristine, easy to maintain just by adding bits of wood when they break.)
Home made bale arks – easy to make, maintain but need regular small attention as they chew their way through
Tin, wood and string – the real bodger’s effort – 6 upright posts, tin on 3 sides and roof, lasted 1st season, rebuilt each year, costs nothing but effort to repair !
"Perfect Pigs" the complete guide to keeping pigs; One Day Pig Courses in South East;
Weaners for sale - Visit our site for details


  • Joined Feb 2010
  • NW Leicestershire
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2011, 09:49:08 pm »
My hubby makes ours, we get tin from the Tinman on eBay he's just down the road from me, use OSB for ends and 3x2 floor with OSB on top. Cost around 160 quid per ark but very very sturdy take 2 sows and the boar rubbing on them no problem. Hubby is a carpenter though.

Tudful Tamworths

  • Joined Aug 2009
    • Liz's website
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2011, 11:35:42 pm »
Oxford Sandy and Black????
Author of the Haynes Pig Manual, Haynes Smallholding Manual, and the Haynes Sheep Manual. Three times winner of the Tamworth Champion of Champions. Teaching smallholding courses at Kate Humble's farm:


  • Joined Feb 2010
  • NW Leicestershire
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #11 on: February 04, 2011, 07:07:45 am »
Lol no it's a type of board. Google it and you'll see. Used alot on wooden stables, very sturdy and not too expensive.


  • Joined Oct 2010
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #12 on: February 04, 2011, 09:04:45 am »
That was exactly what i thought when i read it  :D
Labradors leave foot prints on your heart as well as your clothes


  • Joined Sep 2008
  • Avonbridge, Falkirk
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #13 on: February 05, 2011, 06:34:08 pm »
That's a very good "how to" guide. Not that I plan on building a pig ark, but it's very good instructions.



  • Guest
Re: DIY pig arks
« Reply #14 on: February 06, 2011, 12:21:45 am »
I'm just about to embark on an arc building project of epic proportions (okay, well not that epic, but 4-5 arcs depending on the sizes I go for)  ;D
The one in the link is just what I'm planning  ;) I had terrible trouble trying to source curved steel up here and the transport costs were crazy from down south ! I eventually got some from Cladco in Rutherglen and they look the biz - just need a dry day or two now to get out and get on with it  ::) 8)
Will post photo's once they're done  :wave:


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