A Fancy Squirrel Feeder
The floor is a 1x8 piece of pine, cut to 20". The feed box is made from 1x8 also. Cut 3 pieces 8" long for the sides and back. On the two side pieces, router or saw a 3/8" groove from the top to 3/4" from the bottom, and 1" back from the front edge. These two slots will face each other, so you can cut, and then slide a 6 1/2" by 7" piece of plexiglas down to complete the feed box. I nailed a 3/4 x 1" block of pine across the front edge to form a trough.
The covered porch is made from 4 3/4"x3/4" columns 8" high. The top scalloped sides are made from 1 x 3 x 71/4". I used a two and a quarter inch hole saw to cut the curves, starting a 3/4 inch in from either end, and set it to cut about a half inch down from the top. The center cut overlaps the two end cuts. Then I sawed the board down the center, so I had the two sides. The front piece is made in similar fashion, but with just two holes cut. These are then attached between the columns with small brads.
The railing is 3/4"wide by 1/2" high, cut to fit between the columns. I drilled 1/4" holes, spaced approximately 1" apart on the railing, and the floorboard. I then cut a 1/4" dowel rod into 1 1/2" pieces to use a stiles. On assembled, these where nailed at each end with brads. When completed this assembly was then fasted to the box with brads through the floor, and thought the columns next to the box.
The two roof halves are 16" long. Set your saw to a 45 degree angle, and rip one edge on each piece. Set your fence from the bottom of the blade 6 1/2" to the right. Turn the board over, so the cuts are parallel and rip to width. Glue and nail the two roof halves together.
The front and rear gables of the roof can be made several different ways. I cut these from the scrapes, 1 1/2" wide and then cross cut one 45 degree miter. The top two pieces are 4 1/2" with 45 degree angles cut at each end. The bottom should be 8 inches wide with partial angles cut. Its best to fit these to your roof section. After the are fitted and cut, cut a slot in the inside edge, as you did for the sides. Measure and cut a triangle shaped window from your scrap Plexiglas, and fit it to the grooves. Glue and nail these together. Then nail these through the face into the ends of the roof section.
Once the box and roof sections are complete, install the hinges as shown above. You should place them one inch in from either end. On the opposite side of the box, install a cabinet latch. This will help keep the roof down in windy conditions.
Shingling the roof is a simple matter. From a 2 x 4, cut a piece 22" long, mark off 1/2" increments. Set your table saw to cut a 5/8" deep channel. Cut these channels on center as shown below. Reset your saw to rip this board into 1/8" slices. Be sure to have your anti-kick guard in place, since these can be fly back or jam around the blade. You will need a total of 18, but it would be a good idea to cut some extras for started and trim strips. Also, the best quailty pine or fir should be use, to prevent cracks and splits.
To install the shingles, take a scrap piece and measure down 1/2" and draw a line full length. Using a utility knife cut off this piece. Starting from the bottom edge glue and staple this 1/2" strip even with the roof edge. Cut a shingle strip to length, glue a staple it on top of the starter strip. Move the next shingle strip over 1/2" and align it with the top of the previous slots, glue and nail in place. Repeat this pattern until you reach the peak. Cut another 1/2" strip to form a cap on each side to the peak. Glue this down, and if necessary hold it in place with several wire brads.
Below are some photos of the pieces, and how they are layed out.
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