The latest version of cat scratching posts are up for sale on the Handsome Etsy site. There is a floor-to-wall version that includes hardwood floor-like decks, and a wall-mounted version that also acts as a perch for kitty. Both feature a full size sisal wrapped column. These scratching posts are made from reclaimed wood shipping pallets from a local Human Society shelter.
After working through a ton of cat tree prototypes, I’m revisiting an idea that I actually had installed a few years ago when we lived in Berkeley. This is basically a combination cat tree and stairs, and in this case the stairs run along the face of a book case, allowing the kitties access to the top. This piece also has a small profile/footprint so it does not take up a lot of floor space or room space. The only needed attachment is a clamp that secures to one of the book shelves. The idea is that you could attach this to any bookcase in either direction, and also attach it directly to a wall or near a window.
Here are installation views of the prototype today, with Yuki giving it a spin.
Here is the finished cat scratching post that I custom made to replace an old worn out carpet version for a neighbor’s cat. I replicated the old post’s leaning angle, which rests against a 90 degree corner with a shelf on top.
This post represents my latest approach in using recycled wood pallets to make furniture. The pallets I use come from a Humane Society shelter, which is a nice connection to this being a cat post. I intentionally left the surface wood planks uneven to give more of a rough wood floor look and feel. The side trim really made a difference in the overall feel of the piece, and I like the way that the planks run at angles to one another on the two different levels.
I’m a little behind on posting, but I have been busy in the shop! Yesterday I took a day off to reorganize the space and to build an extension on my overhead storage loft. I’ve reached that point where I have to be as creative as possible with storage space, and to be more selective with what wood is kept in the shop for projects and scraps. I used more of the same salvaged wood to extend the loft that I used in the construction of the original loft. Now I have space to store pallet material, which I am starting to use a lot of.
Today’s agenda includes: finish assembling my neighbor’s new cat post and apply a coat of stain; drill and insert brads into the slat lamp that I am rebuilding; mill wood for the new pill bottle lamp - I am going to make that out of pallet material as well; hand plane the new shelves for the cat tree, then assemble for testing with the kitties.
Never enough hours in the day!
I have spent the last few days working on a couple of lamp designs, and the prescription pill bottle cube lamp is making good progress….especially after I realized that I needed to space out the bottle holes more. Spacing them out has made the lamp a bit bigger, but I actually like the new size more (9” cube). I’ll finish drilling the bottle holes, stain the outside, and connect the pendant light fixture to the top and it should be ready for a try in the apartment.
The other lamp design is going well, too. I took a wood futon frame and broke it down into individual components, and I’ve been sawing up the wood into slats that I can use for different projects. I’ve been playing with alternating the original shiny stain finish with the raw cut side, along with different widths and lengths. Here is the process of sorting out the pieces:
I installed the latest design of the wall mounted scratching post today, and I’m quite happy with it (so are the kitties!). This version is made of birch plywood, which I have stained with a dark Danish oil (it looks great as plain unfinished birch or you can stain it in any color that you like). I am toying around with multiple sections of sisal or manila, which allows easy replacement of just one section instead of having to re-wrap the entire post….and I will probably add a small section of Floor tile to the top of the post to help protect if from claw scratches.
The latest version of the scratching post - both a wall mounted version and a free standing floor version, should be ready to install in our apartment for testing within the next day or so. I finished up all the wood work today in the shop, and coated them in a layer of dark walnut danish oil. Tomorrow I will add the manila (instead of sisal), then bring them up for the kitties to try out.
For my first project these have certainly turned out to be a labor of love, and quite the learning curve. I guess it’s good in a way that I started with something relatively complicated! I am certainly learning a lot already, taking notes to streamline the process for the future.
I recently came up with another version of the cube tree prototype that I have been toying with - this one included all 3/4” birch ply, the addition of yellow and orange accent panels, an extended base for stability, and the addition of Floor carpet tiles onto the top of three different cubes.
I like where the look of this new version is going, but I am still unhappy with some of the structural issues. This is definitely a case of form fighting function.
I actually have a another idea for a tree that I want to try out, so for now this version will go onto the side burner (as opposed to the back burner). I’ll keep toying and tinkering with this one…but I think it still has a way to go. My other tree idea will combine elements of this cube tower, plus features that I liked about a very early version of a cat tree that I constructed this summer, which allowed for a sort of spiraling staircase for the cats to use in navigating up and down the structure. In fact, that early tree prototype was the very first thing that I worked on in my shop!