Monday, 21 May 2018

Greenhouse escape cat flap

All of our outbuilding have ways to let cats out so they cannot get accidentally shut inside.


The greenhouse is no exception.


I could have added an off the shelf  cat flap but they tend to be chunky and I thought they would look out of place on a delicate greenhouse.



I used a 4mm polycarbonate sheet as the base with a grey acrylic surround.

The double thickness was mainly to give it strength where the bolts pass through. I deliberately used a contrasting colour so that the cats would be able to easily identify the place they can get through the otherwise clear panels.



The acrylic is glued to the polycarbonate with cynoacrylate (CA, Superglue).


I used a disposable brush to spread it thinly then sandwiched the sheets between layers of MDF clamped together. I only intended to leave it 10 minutes but I ended up going out so it got several hours to set. The joint is solid.


I used M6 bolts with large penny washers to spread the load to hold a large door hinge in place. The hinge only swings outwards. The idea is that it only lets the cats out not in, so they cannot get trapped.




I'm pleased with the result. It looks how I intended.

The polycarbonate flap is not quite heavy enough to always close so I might add a weight if it becomes a nuisance.

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And...

if, as we did, you want to have the cat flap somewhere else, it's easy to move the pane.



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