common questions and topics
more miscellaneous questions
I just purchased the online plans for the T-14, and I have a few questions.
1) Material List: two treated boards are listed at (2) 1.5 x 5.5 x 20' and (1) 3/4 x 5.5 x 20'. I take it that these are for the post construction, but the post assembly instructions have different measurements: (2) 2 x 6 x 20' and (1) 1 x 6 x 20'. Which is correct, or is that just the way the boards are cut from the mill?
Lumber you buy at the lumber yard comes in "nominal" sizes, a 2" X 2" X 20' board actually measures 1.5" X 1.5" X 20'.
2) Starling Proof Holes: the third option (half-moon) has no instructions that I could find that tell me the placement of the holes. Secondly, is the diagram of the hole actual size, and do I stagger the holes or put them in a straight line?
As per instructions (applicable to both starling hole types): "To starling proof your T-14: 1. Make new doors with starling proof holes as shown. 2. Keep the bottom of these holes at the same measurements as the regular round ones, one inch from top of floor. 3. Move the porches up so they are only ½" down from the bottom of the holes. You may still use the sub-floor pull-out trays." Yes, you still stagger the holes like the round ones and layout the hole with a pencil and ruler; the diagram is not to scale.
3) Side Rails: can I skip this step and just make the "back" of the 4-hole units 6.5" wide and the sides longer to achieve the same thing?
We would not suggest this, build it according to plan, and save yourself the headache. You may have a better idea but keep in mind the house has been around for many years and both seasoned carpenters/woodworkers have built it according to plan. You may jeopardize your safety or weaken the structure, which we obviously DO NOT recommend.
4) Predator Guard: other than the canvas attachment available in the accessories area, what can I make that will achieve the same result?
You could use "tin" instead of canvas but the canvas kit is inexpensive, works great and will last a long time saving you all the effort to come up with something different.
I have the plans for the purple martin birdhouse, but I am unable to find the 3/4" X 12" wide cedar in my area. I KNOW I saw a second choice for lumber to use somewhere, but can't seem to find it now. So, what's the next best thing to use in building the house?
Use #2 white or yellow pine, common in all lumberyards. #2 has some knots which are considered "tight knots," just pick out the best boards with the least amount of defects/knots. You could also use clear pine referred to as #1; it has no knots but is expensive. Once you get the house painted no one will know the difference and it will last a very long time, as long as cedar for the most part.
I have one of your T-14 Martin houses. It is currently at a carpenterıs house being painted and having the pole constructed. He promised this last week and still has not finished constructing the pole. Today Purple Martin scouts showed up at my existing Martin houses. I had planned on placing the T-14 house between two existing houses to increase the size of my colony. My question is, is it too late to erect the T-14 house as planned? If not approximately how long do I have to get the house put in place? Your help with this will be very much appreciated. Don
It won't matter since you have other housing up. You have about 6-8 weeks for all the martins to arrive so it would be best to get it up within that time. If you don't, it's not a problem either because you want to make any colony changes about one year in advance. This will give the martins a chance to adapt to anything new. So, you really can't go wrong :-)
I have had a martin house for several years and have always had
martins. The old house is about shot, so last year I purchased a new 24 room house and I had only 1 pair go to it.
Question is if I don't put up the old house this year do you think all of the birds will go to the new house. Or should I put up both houses for at least another year?
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