Birdhouse Roof - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 12-23-2019, 05:20 PM Thread Starter
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Birdhouse Roof

A house in my neighborhood has this bird house. I'm trying to make a copy, and so far I have the body of the house built. I'm struggling with the roof. It's not a polygon, it's a smooth cone. I tried making multiple slats; that didn't work out. The only thing I can imagine is bendable plywood, but I think that would be expensive, if even available.
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post #2 of 6 Old 12-23-2019, 05:49 PM
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what part are you having trouble with ?
the way I see it is just a round wooden frame (rings), probably cut out
with the jig saw with internal vertical braces and the cedar shingles
cut with a tapered end and laid one on top of the other, shingle style.
I would not try to cover the whole thing "wrapped" in plywood.
just tack the shingles to the horizontal wood rings (spaced accordingly).
googling "conical shape roof" turns up a few examples.
Birdhouse Roof-iges.jpg

an afterthought:
I remember my father making a conical shaped lamp shade out of red cedar.
he processed a big piece of wood then shaved off 1/8" slices on his band saw.
since the birdhouse isn't all that big, you could figure out about how big
you want the roof to be and cut a whole bunch of vertical strips that are tapered
and staple them to the horizontal round frames.
since the roof would be "my" most challenging part, I would make it first.
then, build the "house" part under that.
shape a big piece of wood for the vertical "staves" (for the lack of a better word)
and slice them on your table or band saw.
and make all those itty-bitty shingles the same way.
(I keep forgetting this is a birdhouse - and not a full size gazebo).
making a prototype out of cardboard would be a good idea.
what size are you going to make the roof ?
(with my very elementary math skills, it looks to be about 24" at the base
and 18" tall).

Birdhouse Roof-11.jpg

.
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Last edited by John Smith_inFL; 12-24-2019 at 07:44 AM.
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post #3 of 6 Old 12-23-2019, 06:48 PM
where's my table saw?
 
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I made a roof like that using tongue depressors ...

https://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Funne...one-from-Paper

The bird house roof was cone shaped so I made a cone structure and glued the tongue depressors (shop made ones) starting at the bottom like shingles. I used hot glue.
Here's the build thread from a long ways back:
https://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f9/b...-plans-102138/



The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 12-23-2019 at 06:50 PM.
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post #4 of 6 Old 12-24-2019, 07:49 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks! Making the roof on a bird house is definitely different than a large structure. The roof is aprox. 15"base and 12" height. When I tried cutting full length tapered strips, the roof ended up with a faceted, multi-sided, polygon appearance. The roof in my photo is smooth and the shingles don't appear to be long. If the bird house was an octagon or some such, it would be more appropriate (and much easier) to have a roof that matched.
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post #5 of 6 Old 12-24-2019, 08:13 AM
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yep - I can see how that will be an issue at the top.
do you work with fiberglass ?
one alternative would be to make the slatted structure as you
have imagined it, sand it smooth with a belt sander, Bondo all
the deep imperfections until you get it smooth and cylindrical.
then epoxy all those itty-bitty shingles onto the fiberglass structure.
and another option would be to carve the cylindrical shape out of
styrofoam and epoxy over it with glass cloth. (it will never rot or leak).
you could use 1 or 2" pink or blue insulation foam from the Box Store
to do that part.
my lathe has the head that can turn outboard so turning the foam block
on the lathe would not be an issue. MESSY as all get out because
the foam dust gets "sticky" with static electricity.
[setting up a "hot wire" to cut styrofoam & polystyrene is a tutorial all in itself].
all kinds of ways to skin that turkey.

.

.

there is no educational alternative to having a front row seat in the School of Hard Knocks.

Last edited by John Smith_inFL; 12-24-2019 at 08:28 AM.
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post #6 of 6 Old 12-24-2019, 12:38 PM Thread Starter
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That'ssomething to think about. I just wish those squirrels would chew into the roof, so I could see underneath!
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