Building a cat shelter: finished painting

I’ve now completed painting the new cat house, including two coats of the four colors, and touch-ups. (Previous post about painting here.)

Here you can see several of the pieces: in the foreground is the feeder side door and several bits of trim for around windows; behind them is the floor, then the walls, and in the top-left is the facade front door:

Here’s a closer look at the facade front door (sitting on a pile of wood):

The walls, from the front-right side. The unpainted top of the awning will be covered by roofing materials:

The back-right of the walls:

The back of the facades:

I was supervised by Pepper, one of the two feral cats that live in the shop:

Next up: roofing for the awnings and roof!

Building a cat shelter: floor & roof painting

I thought I wouldn’t do any more till next weekend after Sunday’s painting, but I decided to do more painting yesterday afternoon.

I started by separating the components; this is the first time I’ve removed the walls from the floor since building them. As expected, it’s a little heavy, but not too heavy for me to lift, so that’s a relief for installation:

I then painted the floor a dark brown color:

I also painted the underside of the deck; not entirely pointful, but it’ll help protect the untreated deck boards from ground moisture:

I painted the edges and underside of the awnings with the same color (which closely matches the metal drip strip that will go around the edges):

Plus the roof eaves:

And finally the top of the facades:

(By the way, I made a mistake when painting the front of the facades: the right side in the above picture should be red, not blue. I’ll fix that when doing the second coat.)

Now I’m really done till the weekend (plus or minus a few days; weekdays have no meaning for me).

Feral cats: an update

Yesterday I linked to an excellent video that the Feral Cat Coalition of Oregon (FCCO) produced that featured our feral cats. So I thought I’d do a little update with some new photos of the cats.

They’re all still doing well, and are enjoying scampering around and laying in the sun on these warmer days. This morning was a bit damp, but of course they still turned up for breakfast from the auto-feeder, and took turns eating.

Here you can see Spud sitting on top of the feeder roof, one cat eating and another queued behind her, and Portabella in the foreground:

Can you see two cats in this picture?

Look closer: Poppy sitting amongst the flowers next to the lawn:

They’re still enjoying their heated shelter, even on warm days like yesterday:

Sometimes ya gotta stretch out:

And yawn!

I am continuing to work on a fancy new western-themed combo shelter and feeder for them. Check out the cat shelter blog posts for details of the building process.

Here are a couple of recent shots, showing the current state:

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Building a cat shelter: trim

Another weekend, another few hours on the cat shelter construction.

This was one of the last bits of primary building: adding decorative trim to the walls, to make them appear like board-and-batten siding.

But first, a rare photo of Pepper, one of the two feral cats that live in the workshop. Pepper lives high on a shelf in the front part, and Pansy lives in the back half:

As previously mentioned, I ordered some signs for the two parts of the structure. I actually got two custom signs from two different people, and decided on one pair that we preferred. Here’s the “Cat House Saloon” sign for the shelter, made by HarkenHomeWoodcraft on Etsy, temporarily resting in place:

And the “Mercantile” sign for the feeder:

A view of both signs:

Anyway, back to the trim work. I added 1×0.5″ boards (ripped from 1x2s) to the walls, glued and nailed in place, to simulate board-and-batten style siding:

On the front:

On the facade front:

The shelter maintenance door removed, to make it easier to add the trim on the bottom half:

The feeder side door & wall:

The front and side:

Another angle:

Peeking under the awnings; the boards laying on the deck are cut pieces for the window surrounds, so they can be painted before installing the windows:

Above the awnings:

Adding trim to the back of the facades:

And the back wall, which will probably not be visible, but still worth making look nice:

I shoved the roof forward to make it easier to do the back wall; like many other parts, the roof will remain removable until installation:

That’s basically it for the woodwork. Next up is caulking and painting.

Building a cat shelter: facades

Over the weekend I got back to working on the new cat house, in between planting trees, bee inspections, and other stuff.

This time, I built the facades at the top of the front wall, to help give it an old-west theme.

As you may recall, the structure is divided into two sides: the shelter on the left, and the feeding station on the right. So the facades reflect this, suggesting two separate (but joined) buildings, with a squared two-step facade on the shelter side, and a triangle facade on the feeder side.

Here are the back and sides:

Some interior framing added to the top:

Behind the facades is a metal roof-to-wall flashing, that will sit on top of the roofing shingles. The wall side was roughly cut with a reciprocating saw:

The rough edge of the flashing is hidden behind another layer of plywood:

Top 8×1 boards:

Front view with the top boards in place:

Like other parts of the structure, the facades can be removed, to make installation easier. It’ll be screwed into place. Here, I’m adding more bracing:

Added some corner trim:

Back view, showing trim under the top boards:

The entire front of the facades is a door that will hinge downward, to provide access to the cavity within, which will house wires and power supplies for the cameras and heating pads.

Here I added trim to the door:

The center of each facade will contain a custom sign purchased via Etsy; more on those in the future.

The door clamped in place:

A view of the whole structure:

Another angle:

The basic structure is now mostly complete; all that remains before it can be painted is some decorative trim work. There’s still a fair bit to do: painting, roofing, door hardware, some decorative touches, and more.