How to build multi-family C&C cavy condos, part II

6 Jun

This is the second in a three-part series on the construction of C&C cavy condos. For part I, click here.

I’m building myself a four-story condo with four full-sized pens, plus three cavy runs on the side for my show animals.

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Start initially by laying out several grids for the floor of your condo. Don’t start connecting anything just yet — the weight of these condos builds up pretty fast, and by the time you start the second story, you  may not be able to move the pen without taking it apart. Before anything is put together, be sure you’re setting up your condo exactly where you want it, with enough space on the sides for water bottles and doors. Here, I’ve also laid down a tarp to make cleaning easier.

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Once you’re happy with the position of your condo, go ahead and start attaching the grids to each other with the connector pieces in your C&C kit. These come together more or less like Legos, but you might have to use a little force. Keep the overall design of your condo in mind as you place these, so that you have slots for all the necessary grids as you continue to build.

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When the connectors are in place and all the grids evenly spaced, pull out your zip ties. You should use a zip tie to reinforce the corners wherever the grids meet by way of connectors. So, as of this stage, you should have four zip ties surrounding each connector. The C&C connectors, while useful for maintaining the pen’s shape, don’t actually bear weight especially well. If you opt out of this step, you will likely see problems with your pens down the road. Additionally, there will be some places where connectors will not fit, or may not be desirable. Using zip ties exclusively at these junctions is perfectly acceptable, so long as you don’t overdo it.

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Once you’ve finished the floor, check again to be sure your pen is located exactly where you want it, and then being placing the first level’s back wall. Place connectors and zip ties as in the previous steps.

If you’re working against a wall, as I am here, you’ll always want to place the back wall before the others. It makes it easier to install connectors and zip ties.

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With the back wall finished, insert the rest of the dividing walls around the pens, as you have planned. Be sure to leave openings where the doors will be located.

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Continue installing the roof and upper levels one segment at a time — fill in the ceiling first, then the upper walls, and so forth. You might have to install the ceiling one grid at a time, in order to make it come together properly.

To continue to part III, click here.

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