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Building/Buying Enclosures

Enclosure, cage, nest box, building and enrichment ideas for any species.

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Ash
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Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby Ash » Tue Sep 13, 2011 1:47 pm

I know building things out of wood is always cheaper if you do it yourself. But for chainlink, I think prices come out the same. You can get the long rolls of chainlink, but by the time you buy all the other poles and "fasteners," it comes out to be about the same price as if you bought a bunch of premade 6X6 panels. This is true for Menards, Home Depot, and Lowes.

Does anyone know if there is any situation in which building your own chainlink enclosure is less costly? If there are other places that sell these supplies for cheaper (so that it would make a difference whether or not you built) that you know of?

I foresee myself buying a lot of chainlink in the near future, so it would be great if it would be cheaper to build it myself.
3 red fox, 4 pectinata iguanas, nile monitor, BW tegu, sailfin dragon, leachie gecko, 6 snakes, 2 salamanders, 3 tarantulas
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby Juska » Tue Sep 13, 2011 4:08 pm

I'm pretty sure the cost is about the same either way. Unfortunately, buying rolls of pre-made fencing usually means buying a huge amount of it. I wanted to build my own rat cage, but the only place that sold 1"x1/2" welded wire only sold it by 100 and 50ft rolls.

If you're going to be building a custom size, large enclosure that you can't buy pre-made, I'd suggest building your own. I'm not sure how much cheaper it would be, but at least then you'd have control over how it ends up looking.
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby the_unstable » Tue Sep 13, 2011 11:27 pm

I can't say anything about the original questions because I simply have no idea :P but I would like to comment on Juska's post. I haven't ever looked into welded wire, but I've used wood and hardware cloth to make cages in the past. You could possibly use something like Rustoleum (possibly spelled wrong) to coat the hardware cloth and make it more resistant to urine and such. It kind of sucks, though, to be honest. The edges can be sharp if not cut very carefully. The cage made with wood and hardware cloth was pretty cool, though, and it seemed safe for rats but the design was poor. Nonetheless I still wish I had it around.
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby Juska » Wed Sep 14, 2011 1:29 am

I did look into that idea in the past, but I decided hardware cloth would not be chew proof enough for my boys (Dracula loves to chew everything), though it is cheaper. Also, cleaning it would probably be very tedious and might even have to be replaced once in a while.
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby amyers » Wed Sep 14, 2011 7:32 am

We used wooden posts and chainlink for our serval enclosure. We took the tension rods and drilled holes through them (NOT easy BTW, you have to use...I think its cobalt drill bits and lots of lube to get through the galvanized). We then threaded it through the chainlink and bolted it to the wood. I wouldn't use anything less than 4x6s for the corner posts and 4x4s for the line posts. That's what we used, and it was a little weak until we put the top braces on. We were using 10 ft. 9 gauge though.
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby Ash » Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:31 am

Amyers--Did it wind up being cheaper than if you just bought the panels? I have access to those types of things.

If you have the time, could you take some pictures to show me exactly what you mean? I have a hard time picturing it. No rush, or anything--and if you don't have the time--or you just don't want to--don't bother. :)

EDIT: Just saw it was your birthday. Happy birthday!
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby Lasergrl » Wed Sep 14, 2011 3:13 pm

I just used the panels from tractor supply. They have the horizontal brace making them stronger. Getting them on craigslist helps too!
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby Ash » Wed Sep 14, 2011 9:43 pm

Thank-you, Lasergrl. I remember you had mentioned cattle panels before to me, but I had forgotten that.

So how do you put yours together? Do you set up the cattle panels and then put chain link wire against it and fasten it?
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby the_unstable » Thu Sep 15, 2011 12:01 pm

Hm, I'm interested in the cattle panel thing myself. Not sure what it is. Is it cheaper than getting a premade chain link dog pen? How does it compare for setting it up?

And to Juska - Yeah, hardware cloth is a bit thin. I don't have any chewers so I am not worried (though then again my cages are no longer constructed out of hardware cloth). It's also a pain to cut up and work with as it wants to roll up and the jagged edges will cut skin pretty bad. I'm not sure if you've seen this or not, but I thought it was a good page. http://www.rmca.org/Articles/build.htm The cage made of wire shelving is pretty cool. It looks really good. I checked some of the shelving out at Menards and it felt a bit stronger than the wire for my Super Pet cage, which was also the same white color and same bar spacing. I would love to make one of those cages, just because!
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby amyers » Mon Sep 19, 2011 8:22 am

Ash, I haven't forgotten about you. I will get some pictures up eventually. My camera's on the fritz and school's back in full swing, but I will get some for you. Might be a while though.
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby Ash » Mon Sep 19, 2011 9:07 am

Thank-you! And really, no rush. :)
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby BB » Tue Sep 20, 2011 9:07 am

We built our pens with second hand material.
I used round pipe and joined it with connectors, I also used chain mesh fence and concreted around the bottom. on top I used shadecloth. Remember, that is just my chook, geese and former pig pen. With a fox I would chainmesh all around, including the bottom.
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby the_unstable » Tue Sep 20, 2011 12:06 pm

Gorgeous pen and gorgeous place over there. Wow.
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby BB » Tue Sep 20, 2011 8:12 pm

Thank you. I have to say, in case of a cyclone we are probably safer in the chook pen than in the house. :lol: We always seem to over-engineer with our projects....
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Re: Building/Buying Enclosures

Postby Trefoil » Tue Sep 20, 2011 8:45 pm

If you have the time, Mt Hope and probably other auctions as well usually have chain link, fence panels,netting,cages, and/or enclosures. At Mt Hope they sell outside on Friday, starting, I think at 10 am. They may or may not be reasonable, depending on whose buying. I've seen people bid more for sawdust than you can get it at tsc for, but the large pens usually go very reasonably, probably because of transport.

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