Bird Cage (mansion)




I just hate conventional bird cages. they look so plastic and cheap, have ugly colours or look too much like prisons.
I want something else, but at the same time i want an easy to maintain cage.

Teacher Notes

Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.

Step 1: IKEA Materials

so, take:

-An Ikea Fjus
-MDF plating
-MDF base coating
-A(n animal 'friendly') stain
-Paint for the exterior
-IKEA Tyda grips (since everything is rectangular, i choose these grips. i think they look better than round ones.)
-bolts and nails
-proper tools

Step 2: Building

I cut the Fjus in half and used the frame as a frame to nail the fencing on. I cut the 'windows' out of the shelves to make the roof, bottom and the door. From the remaining frame I created the front panel. please be careful with the sharp fencing and remove all sharp edges inside the cage.
the drawer at the bottom is made out of MDF. I made a hatch in the roof on which i have to attach some kind of seating area so the bird can sit on top of the cage easily.

Step 3: Finishing

You can see the bottom pieces of wood are different in colour from the front panel frame. this is what you get if you don't put a white basecoat on first.
now i just need to add perches, drink and eating buckets.
the only downside in using the Fjus (it was so cheap, that it made the choice easy..) is that the depth is a bit questionable.
please contact me if you have any questions.

Be the First to Share


    • Book Character Costume Challenge

      Book Character Costume Challenge
    • Made with Math Contest

      Made with Math Contest
    • Cardboard Speed Challenge

      Cardboard Speed Challenge

    20 Discussions


    11 years ago on Introduction

    I hope that this works well for you. I built a similar thing for my cockatiel and discovered that there were two problems. One, it got filthy quite quickly, and didn't clean well. (Wood doesn't wipe clean the way plastic or metal does.) Two, the tray in the bottom weighed about 40 pounds, which is a bit much for something that has to be taken out and cleaned once a week or so. (Mine was 1/2 inch stuff though, so perhaps you will have better luck.) I've thought about creating something similar with plastic lamination on the inside, but I've not gotten around to doing it yet.

    3 replies

    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    i expect the inside to get dirty, but the coating i put over the white base is very easy to clean. it feels really smooth. i expect the dirt to fall through the roster (is that a word?) in the tray. the tray isnt that heavy. i looked for a plastic one first, but couldnt find anything fitting so i built this with spare MDF. the grip is easy to hold and the tray doesnt have to come out all the way if i put newspaper in it. ill just replace that. i think its an easy maintenance cage :) @gorillazMiko: thanks for the compliment.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    hey, check up my post answer for the angry bird owner anti mdf rant. I suggested something we do for guinea pigs and bunnies (animals who actually hang out low on the ground and have sensitive respiratory system).

    We make a snug fitting liner for the bottom of the cage with indoor pvc fabric, the one they sell to make picnic table cloth, kind of plasticky. Not the stinky transparent one, the one shiny with patterns on top and velvety on the bottom. If you buy good quality and make the liner well, you just have to empty it and send it in the washing machine. No poop or pee will ever touch the bottom of the cage, so no need to carry it around to wash it. Depending on your bedding it might get dusty at best. Man, I swear it cut the guine pig cage washing by 3/4 of the time. serious pain in the butt.

    If you're not the sewing project kind, a cloroplast (corrugated plastic stuff they make signs with) liner would make a decent job and be like 2000x lighter. Thats what we use to have for the guinea pigs until we discovered the machine washable option. Oh yeah!


    9 years ago on Introduction

     You do realize you have not seen cages in the retail stores made out of MDF for a reason. MDF is compressed wood and made solid with glue. Birds are the most sensitive creatures on earth. NOT a good a idea to house them in MDF the moisture can activate the glues. ANd painting them is not a good idea either paints give off fumes again when you clean it you wet it you reopen the pores in the surface..this is why wood warps over the years after it has been rained on.
    Please think about the animals.
    It's like non stick pans cannot be used in household with birds the fumes makes them sick and can kill them. 
    This is why pets die so often people do things like this.
    You did a nice job building this but take light aluminum and bend it 
    best to clean as well.

    2 replies

    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    NO PANIC THIS CAN BE SOLVED/ improved upon.
    Most of his cage is wire and wood, not mdf. There is plenty of ventilation and the mdf is only on the bottom poop tray, which the bird wont chew. To make it even easier to clean, I would make myself a nice little cover that fits really snug and is held by velcro. We use some kind of indoor pvc fabric for guinea pigs (they call i table cloth fabric cause you make picnic cloth with that) It comes in sweet colors too so you can buy more and make a sleepy bird cover for the whole cage Don't cover it all tight like a bbq grill, pvc doesn't breath, make it just curtain style.... I suggest you splurge and go high quality so it lasts. It can be washed in the machine so cleaning would mean: 1- Take off the pvc cloth lining and put a clean one. 2- dump the whole thing in a garbage bag and shake maybe scratch the poop that's stuck hard. 3-Send in the washing machine with only vinegar and baking soda to disinfect and deodorize. 3- dust the rest of the cage, clean up the fly away poppers from the wire if any. 4- drink a beer (or beverage of your choice). Think about a good disinfecting scrub for all the wire every so often especially if your bird chews on it a lot. just use a very light vinegar-water mixture (or special bird cleaner) and rinse well.

    Now the rest of the cage is all unfinished wood from the ikea shelving unit. So lets not accuse anyone of attempted birdicide by poison.

    Use the low fume paint if your really want color it is tested safe for pregnant women, or why not a nice wash with gouash (water base thick paint that the kids use too finger paint, now I am no expert, but if it is safe for kids to eat it, I would think it is also safe for bird to smell it I sniffed and ate a lot of that stuff as a kid, and I got a master degree, so I would say its food grade too. Waterproof and shine with food grade oil ( the kid with a tribal tattoo at the health specialty vegan and bio store can sell you the product I use for my counter top. If you don't mind, why not invest in dried pine or pine furniture gquality plywood and with oil again (the kind of stuff you put in these wood salad bowl.

    If your decor is not so Bauhaus, and some fancy pre made wood legs. :) Voila friends, lets share the love!


    10 years ago on Step 2

    Question about the drawer at the bottom You say it "is made out of MDF" I'm new here please excuse my ignorance, but what is MDF?

    3 replies

    Medium Density Fiberboard. It's a very common building material, and almost all furniture these days are made out of it. It's basically the scraps fro ma sawmill (read:chips more than sawdust) compressed with resin into a board.


    10 years ago on Step 3

    Great idea! Seems like it would also make an ideal cage for small lizards, snakes, spiders (ick) and possibly even a rat if you added shelves at different levels and a climbing tree. Will perches mount on the hardware cloth/screen? Maybe some cross members of the frame could be added on the sides so you could attach perches....hmmmm now you got me thinking! Oh, and the part you added about it being questionable in depth may be somewhat true, but have you seen some of the REALLY small cages they push for parakeets?! This would indeed be a condo! And a great size for finches! Thanks for posting! ~Lori


    10 years ago on Introduction



    10 years ago on Introduction

    O my goodness! I absolutley love this idea! So far, I've let my bird Argett just han out with me all day, free of a cage, but now I will finally have a nice, big place to keep him!


    11 years ago on Introduction

    That looks awesome!
    I would do this, but I already have a HUGE cage (going sideways... like this line: ---------)

    I'll post a picture to show you what it looks like.

    There's 4 parakeets I think (not sure about the other 2 yellow ones...), and there's also two cocktail things...

    Pictures will be up soon!
    If I remember...

    1 reply

    11 years ago on Introduction

    One problem that could be easily rectified: Birds will always move as high as possible within a cage. They hate it when people tower over them. Its instinctual. The branch should be horizontal to encourage pacing back and forth. And placed as high as possible. Then, make sure the water dish is high to so dust/food/etc doesn't pollute it. Better to make a cage that is long that mounts high on the wall. Height in a bird cage makes no sense because almost all birds will spend 95% of their time at the highest point.