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Old 11-14-2017, 02:52 PM   #1
Cricetinae
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Default 2017 DIY Cage Project, Mounting Plexy?

Hi guys,

I'm in the process of creating a DIY cage using melamine faced chipboard. Nothing too original, borrowing from other a number of ideas online. I intend to mount in on castors for quick moving, whilst hoovering. The cubby-hole's are designed to snugly accomodate IKEA storage boxes. The face is plexy.



However, I'm not sure how to mount the 4mm plexy. A having the plexy rest flush on the face is the goal.

My concern with drilling, is that the chipboard is only 15mm wide. To mount the plexy flush with the chipboard would require drilling around 7mm from the edge of the plexy, causing cracking. I considered having the plexy 30mms longer than the length of the cage, and drilling a safer ~20mm from the edge. However, I'm worried this 15mm overhang each side would ruin the aesthetics.

I was looking at an epoxy, but apparently the melamine face doensn't adhere well? I suppose I could sand up the faces, but given the transparency of the plexy, you'd see this.

Has anyone found any brackets or similar items that have worked for their own projects?
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Old 11-14-2017, 04:08 PM   #2
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Default Re: 2017 DIY Cage Project, Mounting Plexy?

You might be able to use some sort of screws to attach the acrylic to the melamine.Aquarium sealant would not be an option(it doesn't bond properly to acrylic aka plexiglass and would either not stay together for any amount of time or would fall apart eventually).
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Old 11-15-2017, 12:13 PM   #3
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Default Re: 2017 DIY Cage Project, Mounting Plexy?

Would it be possible to cut a groove the same width as the plexi in the base and sides. This way the plexi could be put into the side grooves and slide down and go into the groove in the base?

I have seen a bracket on a diy hamster cage video that held glass/ plexi front in place.

There are square U shaped strips (like what vivariums have for the glass doors to fit into). They could work in a similar way to cutting grooves.
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Old 11-18-2017, 09:46 PM   #4
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Default Re: 2017 DIY Cage Project, Mounting Plexy?

On my cage that I built (a melamine plank and plexiglass structure), I used a pet-safe non-toxic aquarium sealant to adhere the glass directly to the board.

After it was dry, I scraped all the excess from the side.
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Old 11-21-2017, 05:42 PM   #5
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Default Re: 2017 DIY Cage Project, Mounting Plexy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by climber008 View Post
On my cage that I built (a melamine plank and plexiglass structure), I used a pet-safe non-toxic aquarium sealant to adhere the glass directly to the board.

After it was dry, I scraped all the excess from the side.
Oh really? Was the side you adhered the board to covered in the white surface? I assumed it wasn't pourous enough, and that you'd need to sand it or otherwise 'rough it up'. Were you able to see the sealant through the clear plexy, or was it transparant?

Thanks for your insight, and everyones ideas.
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Old 11-21-2017, 06:03 PM   #6
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Default Re: 2017 DIY Cage Project, Mounting Plexy?

It isn't that the melamine isn't porous(or even the melamine at all),it's that acrylic and silicon sealants simply don't work well together and can't stay bonded Acrylic(what plexiglass actually is)just doesn't bond to silicon(aquarium sealant)so it never forms a completely permanent seal.

The best you could do with aquarium sealant is keep liquids from coming out,but it wouldn't permanently keep acrylic in place.You'd still want to attach the acrylic itself to the melamine otherwise you could end up with things falling apart eventually!
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Old 11-22-2017, 04:16 PM   #7
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Default Re: 2017 DIY Cage Project, Mounting Plexy?

Hmm. @amityvillehams Did not know that. Apparently I got lucky with mine, as it has been strongly attached for two years without falling off. Perhaps I had something different happen with mine...

Anyways, not quite sure what to suggest now, as I don't want your glass falling down.
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Old 11-22-2017, 04:39 PM   #8
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Default Re: 2017 DIY Cage Project, Mounting Plexy?

I'd just use the aquarium sealant to keep liquids(such as urine)from leaking out,but use some sort of screws to attach the acrylic I don't think there would be any good solution other than that though.

This is the only positive side to glass as silicon based sealant(aka aquarium sealant)works just fine with glass.However acrylic has advantages over glass especially as far as safety features go,since it doesn't shatter and it would take very extreme methods to break acrylic,so it is just a minor problem to work around(plus it's much lighter)!
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Old 11-23-2017, 10:47 AM   #9
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Default Re: 2017 DIY Cage Project, Mounting Plexy?

I’ve used aquarium sealant on both glass and acrylic for DIY cages. I’ve not had any issues with it bonding to either.
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Old 11-23-2017, 05:23 PM   #10
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Default Re: 2017 DIY Cage Project, Mounting Plexy?

Silicon still is going to be a temporary fix that fails over time and won't maintain a watertight bond(and it can end up allowing the acrylic to move around!).There's not enough of a molecular attraction to maintain the same bond as glass and silicon,so it really isn't adequate for the sturdiest attachment which will absolutely not come apart(unless you remove the screws in the case of the screw method,which would only use silicon to form a watertight barrier rather than actually keep things permanently attached).

Trying to use silicon to keep acrylic in place has been compared to duct tape holding car parts together in the aquarium hobby,it might work for a while but it just isn't a permanent solution!
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plexy, face, mount, chipboard, drilling, cage, flush, diy, edge, melamine, 15mm, overhang, aesthetics, worried, ruin, side, 30mms, longer, ~20mm, safer, length, sand, brackets, found, similar

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