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I would like to get my cats a cat tree/condo that stands about 55-60" tall. Ive seen them in stores in the $120-150 range. I've seen them online for $80-100. I've also seen various plans to build your own. Has anyone here built one before? Is it cost effective to buy material and spend the time to build one?


I would like one similar to this

 

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Generally no, it's not, esp. if you value your time! I made mine using this book a million years ago:

Amazon.com: Cat Condominiums (9780525484301): George Ney, Susan S. Fadem: Books


GREAT book and the world's best cat trees, but not easy. I got the tree limbs for free, but had to spend hours pawing through limbs at a tree surgeon's yard to get the right pieces. The Sonotube isn't expensive ($30 maybe for the whole tree) and then you need nails, carpet adhesive, a staple gun, and staples. If you can get a decent carpet remnant for free you don't have to pay for it.

But making a good-looking and stable tree (and stable is EVERYTHING w/ cat furniture) isn't easy. I have tons of carpentry experience and it was still a royal PITA. Given how cheap these things are these days (at least the less attractive ones made by Armakat, etc.) I would buy one rather than making one.

Right now I'm in the process of re-covering the perches on my tree (mentioned above). I can't remove them to recover them so it's even worse the second time around LOL.

I also just purchased a cat tree b/c I really never want to go through making one again. ;)

If you do decide to make one, get the Ney book. That way at least you'll be making a really GOOD one!
 

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The George Ney trees are, IMO, nicer. They use real tree branches, which cats love, and the perches are curved (made of Sonotube, which is builder's form), which is very comfy for cats.
 

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Discussion Starter #6

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I have two towers. This "premium" one by Amarkat:



And this one that I designed and built myself:




It was ENTIRELY cost effective to build my own, and the one I built is more popular with my big boys than the "large" Armarkat one. There is almost always a cat or two, or three in the home made tower, where the other is kind of a back up.

Of course, I didn't get carried away with gagdets, tubes, tunnels, and what not with the one I built.... but I think that stuff is more for humans than cats. :neutral:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
And this one that I designed and built myself:




It was ENTIRELY cost effective to build my own, and the one I built is more popular with my big boys than the "large" Armarkat one. There is almost always a cat or two, or three in the home made tower, where the other is kind of a back up.

Of course, I didn't get carried away with gagdets, tubes, tunnels, and what not with the one I built.... but I think that stuff is more for humans than cats. :neutral:
I like the one you designed. I don't think my cats would care about tubes or hideaways, they just like to lounge on a high location. Do you happen to have any plans for the one you made? How much did it cost in materials?
 

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Ghostown, I can see why your cats like it. The perches are a good size and it's in good location-right next to the windows.
 

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It also depends on how handy you are as well. I am not so talented in that department so it would be very challenging for me to build my own rather than just buying one already made.
 

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That's kind of what I meant. The hours and headache it would take me (who can't really do much more than put together Ikea furniture), not to mention the space anything "in progress" would take up in the apt - nope, not worth it.
 

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I jumped ahead and assumed cat1001 had the resources and the know how for a quick project like this. I built mine in an afternoon with spare carpet left over from recently redoing my moms house and about 35 bucks in extra materials from Lowes. My Armarkat was about $190, shipped.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I jumped ahead and assumed cat1001 had the resources and the know how for a quick project like this. I built mine in an afternoon with spare carpet left over from recently redoing my moms house and about 35 bucks in extra materials from Lowes. My Armarkat was about $190, shipped.
I have the tools and know how, just need to find some good plans (that work) :)
 
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