Monday, 08 September 2008 11:21
If you can't get hold of any old kitchen cupboards at the right time, here's how I made my own brooder box on the weekend from laminex shelving: I will be making another one next weekend so I will take some step-by-step photos along the way. This one was a bit of an experiment! I would have preferred to use second-hand laminex shelving material but unfortunately my chicks outgrew their cardboard box and I was desperate.
Old drawers make great nesting boxes for the brooder.
The brooder pictured measures 1195mm long x 611 high x 592 deep and look like a big kitchen cupboard laid on its back. The cost was about $90 to make, $66 of that was for two 3.6m lengths of laminex shelving. The rest was for hinges, screws, and light fitting.
You will need:
- 16mm thick x 595mm wide laminex shelving cut into the following lengths: ( they will do this at Bunnings if you go in at a quiet time, it's magic! )
- 4 equal pieces each 1195 long for the sides, base and lid or the finished length required.
- 2 pieces each 560 long for the ends
- Light globe holder & cord the kind you use when making your own table lamp it has its own switch built in.
- Light globe 40w or 60w depending on how cold it is and if your brooder is inside the house or in the shed.
- 2 x plastic "D" handles
- PVA wood glue - I used Selley's exterior woodworking glue
- 40mm self-drilling chipboard screws
- 2 x half overlay cabinet hinges, clip-on style.
- 35mm forstener or boring bit & drill press
- Electric drill and 1/8" drill bit or size to suit chipboard screws
What do do:
- Join one side to the base of the box at right angles, using wood glue and 6 screws. Ensure that the edge strip will be at the top rim of the box.
- Join one end to the base of the box and to the side already attached, again ensure the edge strip will be at the top rim of the box. Using 3 screws.
- Join the remaining side, and end in turn so that you have four sides and the base of the box all joined and screwed making sure that the edge strip is at the top edge of the box.
- Leave it to dry for at least an hour.
- Attach the hinges: turn the box on its back, and place the lid up against and mark the location for the hinges on the lid and back in pencil, about 100mm in from the edge of the box, marking each piece at the same time so the lines will be in the same place. Ensure that the edge strip will be at the front edge of the box.
- Drill the 35mm bore holes in the lid, according to the template provided with the hinges.
- Unclip the hinges so that the hinge is in two parts, and attach each part separately
- Drill & screw the hinges to the back and the lid, then snap the hinges back on to attach the lid. Use a drill bit to suit the screws provided with the hinges. The lid will overhang the front by about 10m making it easy to open.
- Attach the light fitting: Unscrew the light fitting and drill a hole in the box in the centre back. Attach the light at this point as shown in the photo.
- Attach the handles to each end by drilling holes right through the cabinet ends about 100mm down from the top and screwing the handles on.
Optional Design Extra: By adding an extra two hinges you could split the lid into two and have each half open separately.
Important Note: The only problem I had with this brooder was ventilation, because the night was cold there was condensation on the underside of the lid. This would not happen in warmer weather. Placing a piece of wood to keep the lid open by 25mm solved the problem. I will solve this problem permanently by replacing the lid with some sort of framed wire mesh cover.
Contributed by Sharon, Gidgegannup
Last Updated on Saturday, 10 January 2009 06:45