Introduction: Cat-sized Cardboard Dome

This 'ible was heavily influenced and inspired by supersoftdrinks awesome Cardboard Play Dome she made for her kids. (Can be found in https://www.instructables.com/id/Cardboard-Play-Dome/ ) I was impressed and wanted to make one myself, but as an "adult" it would have had to be huge and it would take a lot of space from our small apartment. Still, I wanted to do this, and I thought to myself: "If I only had kids to make this to, they'd think I'm an awesome mother." Then I realized, petting our newly rescued cat, that I had someone to make this to.

Our cats first walked around it, the braver one finally got cozy in it in the evening. I still have to add something soft inside for them to lay on, and paint the whole thing as soon as I get the right paint.

Step 1: Preparing

I gathered up the needed materials:
- Thicker cardboard for the base squares and lighter boxes (cereal boxes, etc.) for the triangles.
- A glue gun would have been perfect, but I had to resort to my "universal" glue. If you have a glue gun, protect your fingers with thick gloves if you leave as small flaps than I did, because the hot glue will hurt.
- A ruler , pens for marking and paper to trace your patterns.
- Clothespins or something small to clamp the pieces together while the glue dries
- Paint (I will paint mine when I get the paint), even acrylic paint will stick to this and it's not too big to paint it for a few times.
- Something cozy and soft to line the bottom so your furry friends enjoy it.

I opened my boxes flat, decided the measures for the five triangles to make a pentagon with little notch in it to make the center rise up a little when glued. I was feeling lazy and didn't want to count my own measurements, so I took the ones supersoftdrink had and turned them into centimeters to get the desired small triangles. My measures were: A = 10,4 cm and B = 12 cm.

You'll need 30 AAB triangles and 9 BBB triangles, and 9 B-squares. If you want to put windows in it, leave out one of the B-triangles from the top.

Draw the sample-triangle of both sizes to the cardboard or a piece of paper and add at least 1 cm flaps in each sides.

Step 2: Cutting and Organizing

Cut all the triangles and bend the flaps inside the colored, unwanted side. The backside of the cerealboxes usually isn't as slippery as the printed frontside and will be easier to paint to. Cut the squares too, now that you're at it.

Remember to take breaks from cutting to avoid your hand getting hurt.

Step 3: Start Gluing

Pile the AAB triangles in 6 piles and arrange them so, that the A-sides meet and B-sides are outside, to form a pentagon. I used a few clothespin to keep the pieces together while the glue dried.

To avoid the ugly crookedness while gluing the last triangle on and have the center of the pentagon popped up, I found that easiest way to avoid it is to glue first 2 pieces and another 3 pieces together first, then glue them together.

Line the finished pentagons the flat end downwards and start gluing BBB-triangles to line them together from the bottom. Don't glue all of the gaps together, leave one out to form the doorway.

Step 4: The Dome Is Coming Together

I got so into this step I forgot to take pictures of gluing the last few BBB-triangles to the top of the structure, on the top there should be place for the last pentagon.

If you want to make windows, leave out one or two of the last BBB-triangles. I may weaken the dome, but gluing straps to the edges of the missing triangle should keep it strong.

Windows also add coziness of the hut and let light come inside of it. Also, you don't have to grouch to see if your pet is inside of it.

When the dome-part is ready, it's time to glue those last squares together and then to the dome.

Step 5: Finishing

I will add a picture of it after I paint it, but for now, these will do.

Place the dome in a quiet and peaceful place, where you don't trot around all the time,

Some cats, like our Täplä ("spot" in Finnish), don't like closed places and prefer to lay down in a cat bed with a border or in cardboard boxes, but our other cat Hilu, who likes to find small, comfy places to sleep in, likes this dome really much and started sleeping in it. :)

I hope you and your dear furry fellows enjoy this 'ible.

Comments

author
citizien0 made it! (author)2015-12-06

my nephew's cat loves it.?

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citizien0 (author)2015-12-04

made it for my nephew's cat "Dotty" using holographic card.

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Cats_Eye (author)2015-01-02

This is the number 2 reason I want a cat.

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suitcasepotato (author)2013-07-25

i am going to make this O-O

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grannyjones (author)2013-01-25

I imagine this made of quarter inch OSB, with carpet glued to the ourside.
Maybe a panel of clear or smoky acrylic.
Such spoiled kitties!

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Thermonuklear (author)2012-09-23

Kui siisti! Vois väsäillä kaverin kissoille tommosen... Great work, dare I say :)

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patron_zero (author)2012-03-12

Very, very cool ! I find when making structures from corrugated cardboard the 'two-layer rule' gets the best results, such being two layers of identical pieces bonded together but with the 'grain' oriented perpendicular to one another, will give amazing stiffness and strength.

author
Hemptastic (author)2012-03-11

Ihan kaunis -- Will make this tomorrow, thank you!

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Uptonb (author)2011-09-12

Good luck on the Pets Challenge.

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Mupton101 (author)2011-08-20

Very cleaver. I'm going to try it.

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msaarela (author)2011-08-06

:) ! Our cats loved it !

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Nelyan (author)msaarela2011-08-08

It would be great if you posted a picture of yours!

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msaarela (author)Nelyan2011-08-09

But honey, you are the picturemaster in our household. I barely know how to hold a camera

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Baritone Blues (author)2011-08-07

This would be awesome on a larger scale for my kiddo. She loves small spaces to hide :) Thanks!

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Nelyan (author)Baritone Blues2011-08-08

Look at my inspiration; it's an actual child-sized play dome: https://www.instructables.com/id/Cardboard-Play-Dome/

author
supersoftdrink (author)2011-08-07

Awesome job! Are you going to sprinkle some catnip into some of the cardboard? That'd be hilarious to watch. :)

You could make a little round pad with cushioned walls to line the inside of the dome to make it more comfy for a cat.

author
Nelyan (author)supersoftdrink2011-08-08

My cats also love to tear cardboard and sharpen their clavs in it, so this is made to be trashed or replaced when broken, but good idea; maybe if it's done with plywood it could be cushioned. Oh what a throne it would be :D

author
pheenix42 (author)2011-08-07

Brilliant! With larger cardboard, one could even build one child-sized for a playhouse!

*bookmarks*

author
Nelyan (author)pheenix422011-08-08

This 'ible is actually influenced by one superdoftdrink made, check it out: https://www.instructables.com/id/Cardboard-Play-Dome/

author
patron_zero (author)2011-08-07

I make paper toys and cardboard structures for my nieces and nephews, great job rescaling the dome for your cats !

One suggestion, consider a few 'signature' touches like perhaps a cutouts in the upper-most triangles, you won't lose strength if you double layer the now 'frame' pieces. I also find stretching a mesh-air breathable fabric between said layers makes a nice finishing touch as well as allows a good circulation to keep the playhouse fresh..

Again, nice job all around !

author
elcivmn (author)2011-08-07

Hmm...do you think rabbits would enjoy this as well?

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Nelyan (author)elcivmn2011-08-07

I'm sure, but with these measurements it will be quite big, maybe too big to fit a cage. It works if your rabbits have much room to move around in (like in an outside-enclosure or a own room where they can take a walk outside the cage), unless you scale it down a bit or make just the top dome-part. :)
If they have a habit to chew cardboard, use an adhesive that won't be dangerous to them if nibbled.

author
javajunkie1976 (author)2011-08-05

I'd make this for the bunny shelter I volunteer for. The buns always love to have weird-ly shaped toys and hideaways.

author
jessyratfink (author)2011-08-05

This is an adorable sequel! I had been wanting to make my cats a new house (they love to shred cardboard) and this might just fit the bill!

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Bio: I love making things with my hands and well, will try to do almost anything I get exited about. And I get easily exited from ... More »
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