Introduction: Reclaimed Wood Ancient Bird Castle

About: Youtube: Heavy Duty Hunter

Hi! My name is Hunter Thorson, I am 10 years old and I found your contest online. With all my sports being cancelled my dad and I finally had time to put together a project to enter. I'm really greatful to have had the quality time to spend with my dad working on this. It was a lot of fun!

The wood for this project came from a cedar water tower in Semans, SK. My great great grandfather bought the tower from the village and moved it 70 miles in a Fargo to his homestead in 1940. He reassembled the tower and built a peak roof and our family used it as a grain bin on his farm until the year 2000. As a grain bin throughout its last 60 years it held up well. The natural oils prevented rot but it became obsolete as my father added new steel bins. Knowing the bin was cedar with verticle lengths of 20 ft and 3x5 inches thick. My father decided to save the wood. He dissasembled the bin and stored the wood in a sea container until this year. My uncle and father split the boards and built a large ice shack for our family to enjoy.


Scrap wood that you can cut into bricks approximately 1 inch x 3/4 inch x 3/4 inch.

Sliding mitre saw, or tablesaw. ( Our tablesaw was broken so we had to improvise with a mitre saw). I would recommend using a tablesaw so your bricks are uniform. It will be much easier to construct with uniform bricks. That said I like the unique look with various sizes.

Air compressor and hose.

Finishing nail gun 1.5 inch nails.

A cylendrical object to build around. ( We used a large tin can)

Scrap wood for base/back/roof on centre structure.

Orbital or bench sander. Bench sander would be easier. We used an orbit sander because thats what we had.

Band saw or jigsaw


Step 1:

Cut several bricks 1 x 3/4 x 3/4 inches in size. Approximately 200 bricks

Step 2:

Cut a base to build on, plywood will work. Ours is 8 x 20 inches. Depending on size of castle, you may adjust.

Step 3:

Sand all 12 corner edges of each brick, giving them a rounded edge to resemble a stone brick.

Step 4:

Using your choice of cylender build your turret around the bottom and add layers until you reach your desired height for window. Leave an opening at least 2 layers tall for birds to enter and exit their new home. Continue adding layers until you reach your desired height. Add cap and add bricks up top, spaced one brick width apart to finish the turret. Repeat a second time to replicate the first turret.

Step 5:

Once the 2 turrets are complete you can attach them to the base in desired location.

Step 6:

You can now build the center front portion of the castle. You can use bricks for this or use lengths of wood cut to desired height as i did.

Step 7:

Cut out an arch shaped door on the front wall, and attach wall to base and turrets in desired location. ( My dad used a band saw to cut ours, you could use a jig saw as well. )

Step 8:

Build a back wall at the same height as the front wall in desired location

Step 9:

Cut a roof from plywood that fits tightly around turrets and is flush with the edges of front and back wall. Nail and secure front, back walls and roof.

Step 10:

Space and centre blocks one block apart on the top of the front wall flush with edge.

Step 11:

Cut and sand blocks to surround front door opening to hide cut edge and finish.

Step 12: (Optional)

You may paint castle or you may leave it and let it weather naturally. If made out of cedar, no sealing is required. But if you use wood without natural preservatives it should be painted or sealed for longevity and years of bird watching enjoyment.

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