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I've been working on this project since New Year's, and it is my first attempt at building any kind of cat tree/condo. We have a couple of the Armarkat trees which we've had for a really long time, they still look pretty good, but I wanted to see what I could come up with. Here's my Cat Castle :D











Max and Cheetah were all over this thing instantly! I built it from 1/2" plywood, some 2x4s, carpet remnants (found a place that has tons of rolls for under $2 a square yard), and sisal. Used drywall screws, nontoxic glue, and a few staples on the underside of the boards. There's a third circle/hole that goes between the box and castle top, and also a big area cut out in the back for the cats to jump up without the battlements in the way. They have been climbing all over it like little monkeys lol.

I was so paranoid about how sturdy it needed to be, but this thing came out like a tank. The Armarkat trees have a bit of movement when someone does a wild leap on/off one, the castle does not budge one bit, it is very heavy as well. I made the ladder removeable (I drilled a couple holes to attach it with bolts) and can be attached to the side if I want to move it (predrilled holes there too.)

I have a lot of supplies left over from this and of course have the tools so I'm going to try another soon. It went much easier than I expected it to go, a bit tedius with the carpet on some of the weird shapes like the battlements. For each step I practiced on scraps first to see what would happen - gluing the carpet, how the staples would hold, etc. And I watched some vids to help - like how to use a jigsaw, had never used one before.

I have a couple of those cement form tubes to try out for the next project. I have seen a lot of trees online where people use one huge tube going vertical and they put little half shelves inside. I'm trying to figure out how they're securing the plywood to the tubes, glue on the edges and then shoot some nails through maybe? Seems like that wouldn't be very strong, so I need to figure out a good way to do it.

The cats are happy with how it turned out, and no one lost an eye or glued a board to their face, so I'm going to say this project was a success!
 

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Maximus,
That is one AWESOME cat castle!
WOW!! Great job! :thumbup::thumbup:
And it's very obvious, how much your cats love it!:D
Sharon
 

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Wow! Excellent job! I am sure your kitties eon't because posting in Emotional Support! They look extremely happy with their new castle! You are incredibly talented!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
8O Oh my!! That is one absolutely beautiful cat condo!!! Did you video it?
Thank you!! :D Yes I actually took a lot of video when I let them at it, haha, had them in another room for a couple minutes as I put the final screws in to attach everything upstairs. I'll have to post a youtube vid of them enjoying their new gym.

Maximus,
That is one AWESOME cat castle!
WOW!! Great job! :thumbup::thumbup:
And it's very obvious, how much your cats love it!:D
Sharon
Thanks Sharon! They are still all over it, then took a short nap on it after getting all tuckered out, now back to climbing!

Wow! Excellent job! I am sure your kitties eon't because posting in Emotional Support! They look extremely happy with their new castle! You are incredibly talented!
Lol, thank you very much!!
 

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Wow, that is AWESOME! :D Seriously... that looks SO much nicer than any store bought cat tree I've ever seen! Your kitties are very lucky! Taking orders??? haha! :D
 

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I am so impressed!!! And how fitting that it's a castle, since cats consider themselves royalty, lol, I'm sure that's what you were thinking when you came up with this idea. I would pay good money for this. My Armarkat tree will be 2 in February, and it's still in OK condition, but really only one wild man goes tearing up and down that one, but I do get paranoid about him sitting at the very top, that he is going to fall.

I have to ask. On your Armarkat tree, have your cats ever sat in the hammock at the bottom? My cats have not even once, and if I put them, the jump right out. I use it for their toy box. It does have a pouch near the top, and wild man Stephano loves that. I was just curious, because my daughter has one for her cat and he does not touch the hammock either, so I'm just curious.

Great job!!!! Yes, looks much sturdier than the ones in the pet stores :)
 

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VERY nice! and very professional, too! I've seen lots of cat trees that are just not worth the money, but this looks like one I would actually happily pay the big bucks for!
 

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That's awesome! Glad the fur babies love it! Where did you get the sisal rope? I'm thinking we might have to replace ours at some point on our cat tree. It's getting kind of worn looking.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Wow, that is one cool castle! You might make some money making cat condos.
Thank you! :) I'm going to try some others I have ideas for too, it was quite fun, who knows maybe I can make a couple bucks if I end up with some extra furniture.

Wow, that is AWESOME! :D Seriously... that looks SO much nicer than any store bought cat tree I've ever seen! Your kitties are very lucky! Taking orders??? haha! :D
Thanks!! LOL, after my mom sees this I have a feeling she's going to want one. I would love to make her one for Mother's Day. It's nice that when you build them it gives you the freedom to set them up for an older cat, larger cat, one with special needs, etc.
I am so impressed!!! And how fitting that it's a castle, since cats consider themselves royalty, lol, I'm sure that's what you were thinking when you came up with this idea. I would pay good money for this. My Armarkat tree will be 2 in February, and it's still in OK condition, but really only one wild man goes tearing up and down that one, but I do get paranoid about him sitting at the very top, that he is going to fall.
Yeah those Armarkat trees are tall, I am happy with how well ours have held up and we've had no incidents over the years. I'm always amazed no one ever trips or falls, the cats are much more graceful than me, lol.
I have to ask. On your Armarkat tree, have your cats ever sat in the hammock at the bottom? My cats have not even once, and if I put them, the jump right out. I use it for their toy box. It does have a pouch near the top, and wild man Stephano loves that. I was just curious, because my daughter has one for her cat and he does not touch the hammock either, so I'm just curious.

Great job!!!! Yes, looks much sturdier than the ones in the pet stores :)
The hammock - nope! I think Max accidentally ended up in there once chasing a toy but jumped right out! They tend to ignore anything toward the bottom it seems, they're probably not crazy about unstable surfaces either. Thank you, the castle is a beast of a cat condo, much heavier than your standard tree and I used thicker boards. Even for the posts I put two 2x4s together to make the posts meaty.
VERY nice! and very professional, too! I've seen lots of cat trees that are just not worth the money, but this looks like one I would actually happily pay the big bucks for!
Thank you!! :) Yeah it's crazy the store ones are usually very expensive, it was a bit time consuming to build but the materials were not bad. I bet I could make another one in half the time now that I have the hang of it.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
That's awesome! Glad the fur babies love it! Where did you get the sisal rope? I'm thinking we might have to replace ours at some point on our cat tree. It's getting kind of worn looking.
Thanks, they've been playing on it nonstop haha. I got the sisal at Home Depot and Lowes, it's $8 for a 50' pack of 3/8" sisal. I will warn you one pack doesn't go far - it covers about one tall leg, but it is excellent quality that the cats love to dig their claws into.

Very cool; you did an awesome job on this! I absolutely love that it's a castle! :D
Thank you, had to make a castle for King Max...



That's amazing! I wish I was crafty sometimes, lol.
Thank you! Really if you want to try building something like that just dive right in, you'll be surprised what you can do. If you put a little creativity and effort together, and as long as you're not a danger to society with power tools and can do simple math heehee, most people would be able to make something that turns out really good.

It looks great and I think home made are much better made. I am sure you put a lot of effort into it. And such a nice reward that they are using it.
Absolutely, my method was measure 5x cut once. :D And I did practice everything on scraps to make sure I wasn't doing anything seriously wrong. Youtube instructional vids help a ton too when I got to something like wanting to cut out a circle in the middle of a board without disturbing the edges. Learned a lot of new things, so now I am very ready to try another. We're gonna build a whole cat forest over here! lol
 

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Thank you! :)
The hammock - nope! I think Max accidentally ended up in there once chasing a toy but jumped right out! They tend to ignore anything toward the bottom it seems, they're probably not crazy about unstable surfaces either.
I have the same tree.

Only cats I ever had use the hammock was a pair of bottle babies. they would pile in together and sleep. I think It was for the snugness. But I had altered the hammock to be lower in the front and higher in the back making it slope a bit for easy access. After they got too big, It became a toy storage spot. (this hammock also fits nicely in a large dog crate to give a sling for kittens to sleep on)
 

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What is the Non Toxic glue you used, to glue on the rope with??
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I'd certainly buy one!
Wow thanks for the compliment!

I have the same tree.

Only cats I ever had use the hammock was a pair of bottle babies. they would pile in together and sleep. I think It was for the snugness. But I had altered the hammock to be lower in the front and higher in the back making it slope a bit for easy access. After they got too big, It became a toy storage spot. (this hammock also fits nicely in a large dog crate to give a sling for kittens to sleep on)
LOL yeah I guess kittens would love that.
What is the Non Toxic glue you used, to glue on the rope with??
For the rope I put one flat head nail in the beginning of the rope to the back of the post, and another nail in the end part of the rope. I tried to ninja them in so they are either in areas the cats can't reach on the ladder or burried on the posts so nobody snags a claw. I used Elmers wood glue to secure some of the wood pieces before I put drywall screws in, and to attach the carpet to the wood I used Stanley Dual Melt.



Elmers is non toxic for sure and the Stanley says non toxic on the bottom of the pkg (none of the other brands of hot glue said that so I figured we should just roll with this one.) There is no glue exposed anywhere on the structure regardless, I'm sure it wouldn't be good for anyone to eat glue in general.
 
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