I built this kennel for my 6.5 year old German Shepherd Dog, Edge, who has some separation anxiety. Typical crates do not keep him inside, and for his safety he needs to be kept confined. He has a habit of chewing on plastic, and I am fearful for what he may consume during his chew fits one day.
For All following Steps the materials used were: 2"x4" studs, 5/8" plywood (not particle board), Steel Rods in various sizes listed in steps, 1 1/4" construction screws, 2 1/2" construction screws.
Step 1: Door
For the door, precut the following pieces of wood:
2- 27" studs
2- 23" studs
1- 24" x 30" plywood (you will cut out center after mounting)
You will also need the following pieces of hardware:
4- 24" steel Rods
2- 3" corner hinges
1- Stainless Steel locking latch
2- Drop latches
take one 27" stud, this will be your top. Attach both 23" studs square to the ends of the 27" top by clamping to your plywood piece. you will need to leave a 1 13/32" gap on the sides from the edge of the plywood to the edge of the studs. see 2nd photo. once in place, use your smaller screws to attach plywood to studs. after 3 sides are connected, pre drill your rod holes with appropriate size drill bit. I used 1/4" rods, so used 1/4" drill bit. Measure out inside distance and evenly drill holes for rods, drilling in approximately 1/2" . do this for both top and bottom, clamping the bottom piece on but not screwing down. after all holes are drilled, place rods into top wood. you may want to use a rubber mallet to push them in further. then place bottom piece onto the rods and also pound on. once rods are all the way in place screw the bottom stud to the plywood. after secure, remove the plywood center using a circular saw or small blade saw, depending on what you have access to. For now, the door can be placed off to the side.
Step 2: Back
Pre Cut pieces of wood:
2- 27" studs
2- 23" studs
1- 20" stud
1- 24" x 16.5" plywood
4- 1' steel rods
Take 1 27" stud and both 23" studs and attach 23" studs to bottom of 27" on both ends. using your large screws, drill from the ends of the 27" at an angle into the 23" studs. Take the second 27" stud and attach it to the bottom of the 23" studs. on the top, pre drill the rod holes like in step 1. measure out on the 20" stud the same distance between rods. place rods in top piece after holes are drilled, pound into place, then add the 20" stud. your distance from top to bottom of the 20" stud should be just over 17". this number does not need to be exact. Attach your plywood on the lower portion, below the rods, leaving the same gap as you did on step 1.
Step 3: Sides
For both sides you will need:
4- 40" studs
4- 23" studs
2- 39" x 14.75" plywood
4- 36" steel rods
Take 1 40" stud and attach a 23" stud to one end of it. (23" should be sitting on top of 40"). attach using a plywood piece, leaving a 5/8" gap on sides. Measure out on 23" stud between the top and the plywood piece for 2 evenly spaced rods. clamp the opposite side 23" piece on plywood in place and measure for rod spacing. drill holes. place rods into stud on the secured side first, then onto the free floating piece. secure second 23" piece to plywood after rods are fully placed into studs. Attach top piece by using large screws and drilling from top piece at an angle into the side pieces. Repeat for the 2nd side.
Step 4: Assembly
You'll need all pre assembled sides for this step, as well as 2 plywood pieces cut to 27" x 43". start by attaching the back to one side. Use the large screws to secure them together from the end. make sure top matches up, and that the inside plywood sits snug to each other. Add the other side to the back and repeat process.
Next, attach one plywood piece to bottom. make sure the back and sides are flush, then in the front you should have a slight overhang. After attaching bottom, I used a 1/4" rubber mat cut to size and secured it to the floor using smaller screws. this is completely optional, but since I cannot put any blankets in my dogs kennel, I opted for the rubber bottom. Then attach the top as you did the bottom.
Then put the door into place on the front. once the door is snugly put onto the front, take your hinges and attach to one of the sides of door. I used 2 1/2 " carriage bolts to attach the hinge to the side of the kennel, then the provided screws for the side that connects to the door.
On opposite side, attach your selected latches. I chose 3 latches, one that locks with a key and the others that are a simpler lock. attach so they are tight on the door.
Step 5: Try It Out!
I obviously made a very large kennel for my dog. He is a shorter, longer dog weighing in at 78 pounds. this has enough room for him to turn around in, stand up comfortably, and have plenty of air flow. as you can see, he is quite comfortable!