Let us celebrate the return of photo goodness with photos of something old that I mostly already had pictures of.
This summer I built an outdoor run for my indoor cats.This was unquestionably the most ambitious build I had done yet.
Somehow I managed to make it 1) stand upright 2) stand stable 3) fit where it was intended and 4) function as intended. To be honest this still seems like a miracle to me.
I built the frame out of 2×4 stud and waterproofed the crap out of it with Thompson’s. And the cats had a party in it that lasted all summer as I added more shelves and perches and cushy beds and a hammock for them. My Kreg Jig (I have the R3 version) came in really handy for making very strong and fairly easy joins when I put up shelves.
When the rains arrived I got the bright idea to roof it with fiberglass panels. However, it soon became apparent that even though I Googled I still didn’t have much idea what I was doing. Since the run is sheltered against the side of the house and we don’t usually get powerful winds anyway, and since I was scared of jacking it up, rather than install the panels permanently I decided to weight them down with bricks.
Surprisingly, this seems to have worked okay. They’re not leaking at all. I like the idea that I can easily remove them in the summer.
I also took the opportunity to upgrade the sort of crude entry I’d made for the cats, designed and built in a moment of frustration during the initial build when I realized there was a gap I needed to bridge between the actual laundry room window and the back of the run. So on the outside, I framed out the tunnel sort of thing I’d built:
And on the inside, I installed a cat flap.
This time around, I also made sure the entire thing was put together with screws (the white oblongs next to the cat flap are pocket hole covers) so that it can be disassembled to close the window for cleaning, or to repair or modify any part of it. In order to get the original build out of the window I had to grind through staples with my Dremel, not to mention using a hammer claw to pry apart the tunnel itself from that wooden board that closes off the rest of the window opening, and I don’t intend to repeat that.
The build that seals off the window now has weatherstripping and is as airtight as I can make it so the run can be available to the cats without the rest of us freezing our butts off. The mornings and evenings are chilly now but several cats are out there routinely to watch the birds (and the garbage truck).
Even the three-legged cat. How did he get over there?