order to give the aviary a professional, polished look,
it was essential that the aviary doors look nice. I wanted
something with a true kitchen cabinet/china cabinet look,
with mitered edges on both the inside and outside edges.
I also wanted a design in which the Plexiglas panels could
be removed and replaced should the original Plexiglas
become scratched, cracked, fogged, broken, or otherwise
damaged. Because this part of the project is so difficult
(unless you are an experienced woodworker) and time-consuming,
we decided that we would order the doors to our dimensions
from a company that manufactures unfinished cabinet doors.
The company I chose was WoodCabinetDoors.com.
They allowed me to order doors in any size up to 60"
by 24"' (two center doors are 60" by 24",
the other four doors are 60" by 23"). Shipping
was free since my order exceeded a designated limit, and
the total price of the doors with the Plexiglas included
had two minor problems with the service from this company.
The first was that they estimate delivery in about 2 weeks
and it took closer to a month, which was understandable
given that the doors I ordered were extraordinarily large.
I e-mailed them about the delay, and the order was in
the mail that same day. The other was that I had ordered
the door style that does not include a wooden grille,
but received doors with a grille. The grille would interfere
with viewability, but fortunately they were easily removed
(the glue that attached it was flexible enough that we
could remove the grille without damaging the doors). Since
this was easily rectified and they did not charge us for
the grilles, I was satisfied, on the whole. The quality
of the workmanship was very good.
click on any image to enlarge it.)
unfinished door from WoodCabinetDoors.com,
after the grilles and Plexiglas were removed.
close-up of the mitered edges. The inside edge is
standard, but the company offers a variety of outside
edge styles. I chose the full cove edge profile (option
B). The exact door that I ordered was Red
Oak Lexan B, catalog number RO BMLEX.
stained and finished the door to match the aviary
door, after staining was complete.
the doors were stained and finished (and dry), they needed
to have the hardware attached and the Plexiglas panels
reinserted. The doors had come with screw-on mirror clips
to hold the Plexiglas, but we chose not to use them because
they extruded too far and interfered with the door shutting
all the way (I did not design the door space to be wide
enough to allow for these clips because I did not know
it would be a problem. We had two choices: 1: drill out
a little of the wood of the frame where the clips would
overlap, or 2: find another means of attaching the doors.
We deemed it would be simplest to add little screwes to
the inside of the door frame to hold the Plexiglas in
place. Should it need to be replaced, the screws could
easily be removed.
hinges were attached in three places along each
door. Holes were predrilled.
the holes were drilled, screws were inserted and tightened
with a screwdriver.
were drilled for the handle on each door.
the handle was attached by screwing in the screws
through the holes with a screwdriver.
of using the existing method of attaching the Plexiglas,
we attached the plexiglass by inserting tiny screws
to hold it in place. These screws did not interfere
with shutting the doors the way the mirror clips did.
latches were installed to hold the doors shut. The
square piece was attached to the door with a screw.
latch part was screwed to the aviary front.
aviary, complete with doors.