Metal and plastic bird cages are readily available in most pet stores but lack the charm of a handmade wooden cage. Use heavy plywood for the top and base, and wood dowels for the bars to create a completely wooden enclosure for your fine feathered friend. Create a lockable door in the top of the cage to secure the bird, and leave the wood bare to make sure your bird is not affected by stains or paints.
Cut two 14-inch squares from 3/4-inch plywood. Mark a line with a pencil 1 inch inside each edge. Make a mark at every 3/4 inch along the lines. Do this on both squares.
Using a carpenter's square, mark a square 8-inches across in the centre of one square on the reverse face from the first square and marks. Cut along one edge of this square with a circular saw.
Position one hinge 1 inch in from each corner of the cut with the hinge pins centred on the cut. Attach the hinges with a 1/2-inch wood screw through every hole in each hinge, using a cordless drill to drive the screws.
Cut the remaining three sides of the door. Position a 2-inch barrel bolt on the edge opposite the hinges, so that the bolt slides onto the door. Attach the bolt to the face of the plywood, so that the bolt extends onto the door, using a 1/2-inch screw in each hole. Attach the "eye" of the bolt latch on the lid in the same way.
Using a mitre saw, cut a 1/4-inch-diameter wooden dowel 16 inches long to fit each hole in one of the squares (the number should be equal). Bore a 1/4-inch diameter hole 1/2-inch deep in each marked location, and at each corner of the square on both plywood squares.
Put three or four drops of wood glue in each hole on one square. Stand a dowel in each hole, fit snugly into the bottom of the hole, so that the tops of all dowels are level with each other.
Apply glue to the holes in the second square and fit it on top fitting the top ends of the dowels into the corresponding holes in the piece.
Clamp this assembly together and allow the glue to set completely.
Things you need
- 3/4-inch thick plywood
- Tape measure
- Table saw (optional)
- Circular saw
- 1-inch hinges
- Wood screws
- Barrel bolt
- Wood dowels
- Mitre saw
- Drill press (Optional)
- Wood glue
- Quick clamps