I started work on the catio on 6/17/15 and finished on 8/20/15. This slideshow reduces 2 months of work down to 8 minutes. Which I realize is kind of long… there is a fast-forward arrow you can use to speed it up! The slideshow should start automatically. If you only see a grey box, click the box to start the slideshow. There are captions under each photo:
The corner of the yard where the cat enclosure now resides.
On 6/17/15 I started clearing out the area.
I dug up as much of the lilac roots as I could.
An hour later the yard was clear.
Then I headed to the local hardware store and bought my first load of wood for the frame!
My first attempt at putting a frame together.
Which involved 3″ deck screws.
Testing the frame in the yard for size – perfect!
This stuff was a life changer.
After only one coat my wood was completely water proof!
And I love the color!
Dad told me about Simpson Strong-Tie connectors.
I took apart the frame and removed all the deck screws.
On 6/21/15 I rebuilt the frame with Simpson Strong-Ties.
It was time to work on the shelves!
I had to cut the ends off each board.
I was left with an impressive pile of extra wood.
I sanded down the edges.
I gave each board a coat of waterseal.
Our yard might be small but we have a pretty awesome view.
Letting one side of the boards dry before flipping them over.
After staining both sides of each board, I lay them on the frame to dry.
Testing out placement of the boards before nailing them down.
On 6/29/15 Bonkers had his first trip into the catio!
My new DeWalt power stapler – love this thing!
Stainless steel staples are pricey but won’t rust.
On 7/1/15 I used 1400 staples attaching chicken wire to the frame!
It was great to see the enclosure start to take shape.
The cat’s eye view of the Ipswich River.
I had to cut the roofing tiles in the Lowe’s parking lot!
Bonkers loves anything plastic.
On 7/2/15 the first roofing tiles went up.
On 7/9/15 I installed 2 ramps.
By 7/12/15 things were really coming together!
On 7/18/15 I starting work on the door.
Stapling chicken wire to the door.
Galvanized hinges which won’t rust.
Galvanized handle which won’t rust.
By 7/19/15 the door was secure with 3 hook & eye locks.
Bonkers loves the enclosure!
After finishing the door, I decided to buy another 2×4 so I could angle the roof.
I stained it and bolted it to the top of the enclosure frame.
I re-attached the roofing tiles.
Before the connector was built, we carried the boys out to the enclosure.
On 8/2/15 I had to remove the 1st-to-2nd floor ramp to add in the litter box.
Darwin enjoying the enclosure [before bottom-level cushions were added].
Bonkers enjoying the all-weather cushions.
Darwin enjoying the enclosure at night.
The boys enjoying the enclosure.
On 8/5/15 Bonkers watched birds fly over the roof.
Bonkers watching the world go by from the enclosure.
On 8/12/15 our new replacement windows were installed, allowing us to finally
install the cat door!
On 8/17/15 I bought wood for the connector.
And brackets for the connector.
Waiting for the waterseal to dry on the connector wood.
The body of the connector.
The body of the connector in the yard, resting on a little table.
On 8/18/15 I added legs to the connector.
And a 2nd layer of wood to the frame so the roof would be angled.
The connector opening lines up perfectly with the cat door in the dining room window!
On 8/19/15 I cut a hole in the enclosure so I could attach the
The connector is attached!!!
On 8/20/15 I bolted the roof to the connector and the cat enclosure was DONE!!!
It was time to introduce the boys to the cat door. Bonkers was skeptical.
But he finally got the hang of it!
Ooops, his tail didn’t make it all the way through.
I tied the door open because Darwin was terrified whenever it moved.
Darwin entering the enclosure from the cat door for the first time.
Darwin checking out the enclosure.
Darwin heading back into the house through the cat door.
Bonkers “guarding” the cat door.
Darwin in the enclosure during a rain storm!
The polycarbonate roof keeps the rain off the boys!
Darwin chilling in the enclosure.
Darwin would love to stay out all night!
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