How to Make Shelves - With Photos

alpayton

Always into something...
Joined
Jan 28, 2009
Messages
814
Location
Bowling Green, KY
I have a question, do some people not sand down the corners? All the shelves I have purchased always have the corners rounded. I would love to make my own shelves but I don't know how I would be able to round the corners
I just got a sanding block (one of those you can attach different grits of sand paper to) and went to town on the edges. More or less though it just knocks off the "sharp" 90 degree angles on the edges. Without a machine sander I doubt anyone would be able to have enough elbow grease or muscle, not to mention patience, sitting there hand sanding the edges to make them round. I also sand down the damage that they do while chewing about once a month or so. Course, that's not totally needed either, cuz they'll just do it all over again.

And just like someone up there said...it's a personal preference...not a necessity. :)
 

WEFA_in_Me

Chinchillaholic
Joined
Oct 24, 2009
Messages
53
Location
Seward, Alaska
okay, now shelves that are a little bit more complicated. How do I make the awesome ones that have the lip/edging so his demolition piles/litter don't fling out when he runs around? I clean the cage every day but it doesn't take 5 minutes with his favorite wood to have little shavings all over.

I thought maybe getting some help in cutting wood that is a bit thicker than my shelf into sections so I have a rectangle and drilling a hole all the way through and trying to find a long enough screw?
 

Chub_Chub

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 9, 2009
Messages
547
Location
AZ
I just got a sanding block (one of those you can attach different grits of sand paper to) and went to town on the edges. More or less though it just knocks off the "sharp" 90 degree angles on the edges. Without a machine sander I doubt anyone would be able to have enough elbow grease or muscle, not to mention patience, sitting there hand sanding the edges to make them round. I also sand down the damage that they do while chewing about once a month or so. Course, that's not totally needed either, cuz they'll just do it all over again.

And just like someone up there said...it's a personal preference...not a necessity. :)
I got a hand-held "mouse" electric sander at Walmart for around $25.. Much easier than having to hand sand, and it can be easily stored away. :)
 

AZChins

Pro Cage Cleaner Champion
Joined
May 18, 2009
Messages
5,726
Location
Sahuarita, Arizona (a half hour south of Tucson)
I second that...I have a palm sander. When I HAVE to sand something I use the lowest grit I can so that it takes off a lot of material in a hurry. 60 grit will do the job. I hate sanding so much, so anything that takes less time is great. My palm sander was $4 at a garage sale. It's sort of covered in paint and missing the little bag that supposedly collects the sandings...but it has worked flawlessly for years. (Than again, it's sort of just a motor with an imbalance in it...so I would expect it to work for a long long time.)
 

Stackie

I bite.
Joined
Jan 29, 2009
Messages
6,399
Location
Indianapolis, IN
okay, now shelves that are a little bit more complicated. How do I make the awesome ones that have the lip/edging so his demolition piles/litter don't fling out when he runs around? I clean the cage every day but it doesn't take 5 minutes with his favorite wood to have little shavings all over.

I thought maybe getting some help in cutting wood that is a bit thicker than my shelf into sections so I have a rectangle and drilling a hole all the way through and trying to find a long enough screw?
Cut some strips of wood- however large you want your lips to be- and glue them onto the edges of the shelves with elmer's wood glue.
 

TheNobleFight

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 3, 2010
Messages
114
The Mouse sander is hands down one of my best tools...
Stackie is right... Just buy "Trim Moulding" used for finish carpentry and cabinet making. You can get 1/2 x 1/2 pine in 14' lengths for just under 90 cents a foot and glue it with Elmer's water based wood glue.

Another awesome thing is "Cull Lumber". All Home Depots, Lowes, and lumber yards have cull lumber. Basically it's wood that is damaged has knots or is warped, twisted etc... It is unusable wood for tradesman, and they mark it down to 50 cents to a dollar a piece. Since you are only using small pieces for chin toys and ledges, you can cut the piece you need and scrap the rest. It will save you a bunch of money on wood. Just make sure you are buying pine or poplar. It is rare but sometimes they have expensive hardwoods and structure Fir in the cull bins, and most of them are toxic for chins.

Also if you are looking for perfect radius corners on your ledges, you will have to use a table router and carbide cutting bits. But it is not worth it for chins, as they will destroy all of that hard expensive work.

 
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Teekachin

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 14, 2009
Messages
53
Location
California
Thank you so much for this! I had given up on making my own shelves. But, with all this info, I can't wait to get started!!
 
R

RNmama2girls1chin

Guest
OMG thank you thank you thank you thank you!!!!! this post has made my day!!!!!! im off to work and then home to make shelves!!!!
 

ratcuddler

Eager Learner
Joined
Feb 8, 2010
Messages
27
Location
Mingo, Ohio
I just wanted to pass along my find. I was paying $1.18 for 2 hanger bolts at Lowes. I was doing some research and found http://www.boltdepot.com They have lots of different sizes of bolts for just a few cents a piece. They also have wing nuts, and larger washers to hold the shelves on the cage. (I was using the smaller washers before I knew about the different sizes, and broke some wires) I hope this helps.
 
I

Inigo

Guest
maybe you can help me! i've just replaced all of my shelves, and i want them to last. i heard somewhere that you can rub a little bit of beeswax into the wood to protect against staining. any idea if this is safe?
 

alli713

..has a fleece addiction
Joined
Jan 28, 2009
Messages
4,649
Location
Twin Cities, MN
What would be the recommended thickness of the wood?
I use 3/4" thick. Although most of the time lumber isn't exact so it may actually be listed as 1" thick. You could go thicker, but then you may need more bolts to keep them up since they'd be heavier.
 

SamiJami

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 11, 2010
Messages
445
Location
Salem OR
Thank you so much for posting this! I went to Home Depot and got everything, then went looking at mine and it had no pine. So I got poplar. Got home and realized I didn't have a drill. So I've done them all by hand. Do anyone that doesn't feel like hurting yourself, don't use poplar if you don't have a drill!
 
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