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The life and times of james Hart: his family, his music, life in Luton and his occasional escapes onto the internet.

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Sunday, 13 January 2008

Make your own bird feeder stand .. from bits and pieces!

While Lenni was attending a birthday party, Beth, Christopher and I went for a civilised cuppa at one of the local garden centres (for what it's worth, the coffee wasn't brilliant.. it came from one of those combined grinding/brewing machines, but it tasted a bit like it had been standing around).

We had a bit of a browse around - not least to buy some replacement fat balls for the winter - not the squirrels! - and to find another bird seed feeder to replace one of the two that the children received from Father Christmas, which didn't 'sucker' to the lounge window successfully, and broke on the terrace.

The replacement we found had a hoop on the top, but - of course - that meant we needed to find something from which to hang it. The feeder stands in the shop, constructed from galvanised tubular steel, were £20, which wasn't really justifiable, considering we were only there for a cup of tea, so, when we got home, I set about making my own out of bits and pieces I could find around the place. Here's what I used:

  • a 2m plank of 10cm x 2.5cm rough cut wood
  • a 1.5m length of domestic copper plumbing pipe (15mm outside diameter)
  • a galvanised wire coathanger
  • some 5mm x 40mm zinc woodscrews
  • some weather-proof woodstain to preserve the wood
  • a drill & bits (including a 14mm wood bit) a screwdriver and some pliers.

I cut the wood into two identical lengths of approximately 70cm, and two lengths of 10cm, and, after painting them with preservative and allowing it to dry and drilling pilot holes, I screwed the two shorter pieces at each end of one of the longer bits. Then I determined the half-way point along both longer lengths, and placed the 'bridge' piece at right-angles over the one I'd not used, yet, putting four screws towards the corner to hold it in place. A very simple cross-member base.

Finally, I used the 14mm bit to make a hole down the centre, easing it out a little to make a tight hole for the pipe, and persuaded the piping in, using a hammer. Then it was a simple case of bending over the hook at the top of the hanger with a pair of pliers so it would fit inside the top of the pipe, and twisting the ends over to make loops to hold two feeders.

The children helped me with the painting, drilling and hammering, and we were all quite pleased with the results (see below, and click for bigger). I only hope that I've situated the feeder stand away from the danger of cats, and I've not used any ingredients that are bad for nature. It'd be typical if it turns out that birds are allergic to copper or something! Unfortunately, it was dark when we put it out, but I'm sure we'll find out soon enough if it's good enough to tempt the birds closer to the house... especially since there's bathing and drinking facilities available, too!

Lenni, with power tools!Chris, with a hammer!Our do-it-yourself bird feeder. In the dark.

Posted by james at January 13, 2008 6:27 PM

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