Make a cat scratching post in 10 easy steps

Project guide

Difficulty:Beginner

Estimated time: 5 hours

Cost: ±R350

Cats have a tendency to look for places to wear down their claws. Adding stylish looking ‘cat furniture’ may well provide your cat with the relief it seeks and save your furniture

 

By Gareth Greathead

Tools & Materials

•    Jigsaw

•    Hacksaw

•    G-clamps

•    Cordless drill/driver

•    Scissors

•    Staple gun

•    Tape measure and straight edge

•    Pencil

•    Speaker box covering (flea market)

•    Contact adhesive and PVC glue

•    String

•    Wood screws: 4 x 40mm

•    Safety gear (PPE)

Cutting list

•    Scrap pieces of 16mm MDF board

•    One base, approximately 500 x 500mm

•    Two tiers, oval or circular discs of MDF

•    Two lengths of PVC pipe, approximately ½m each

•     Four circular discs to fit into the ends of the PVC pipes

 

This is a simple project and the dimensions are not of any real significance. You may wish to adjust the design to match some offcuts you have lying around; that’s what I did. We have a cat at our office by the name of Joey and he likes to hang from the blinds sometimes. At other times he becomes bored and we hope this scratching post will keep him occupied.

 

Step-by-step guide

 

Step 1: Measure out the board for the base. The size isn’t important, however, it should provide a firm, stable base for the structure above.

 

Step 2: Mark out the dimensions for the upper tiers or levels. The upper tier was cut to a near perfect 400mm-diameter disc with a jigsaw. There’s no need to get fancy though; you can use a dustbin or any round object to mark out a circle or shape.

 

Step 3: We decided to use PVC for the poles. I don’t know the diameter of the pipe, but I went into the hardware store and asked for the pipe they use for toilets. The ‘poles’ for the cat scratching post do need to be pretty straight, although there are a few millimetres to play with. I had to use a file to get within these parameters.

 

Step 4: Cut a thin slice of PVC from the remaining PVC to make a template. Run a pencil around the inside of the template and draw four circles on a scrap piece of MDF. A jigsaw can be used to cut alongthe line.

 

Step 5: The discs made in step 5 are the ‘end caps’ and will create an area to screw the base and tiers to the poles. These may require some gentle coercion or a few strokes with a file in order to fit into the ends of each PVC pole. They are secured with four screws, one on each side of the cylinder.

 

Step 6: Use a credit card or similar to spread contact adhesive on the surface of the base and tiers. Cut the piece of fabric larger than the piece to be covered. The overlapping fabric will be wrapped and stapled on the other side.

 

Step 7: Once it has been stapled, cut a piece of fabric the same size as the piece being covered, apply glue to the MDF and glue down the edges.

 

Step 8: With the pieces covered, use the PVC template and chalk to mark out the connecting points between the base, tiers and poles. Drill a hole through the middle of the piece and use the hole on theother side to locate the templatemarking the position where the poleswill be attached.

Step 9: Wrap string or rope around the PVC poles until they are covered.

 

Step 10: Drive 4 x 40mm wood screws through the chalk markings into the end caps of the poles.

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