Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Retrofitted Swift boxes in a gable end

These are the neatest and most professional retrofitted internal Swift boxes we have seen.
The pictures below tell their own story, but first, in his own words:

Michael Osborne

9 neat entrances in a gable end
There are more pictures on the Read more button below
We hired the equipment - a diamond drill and 117mm dry core. All the holes were drilled from inside to out. The breakout on the outer brick face is minimal if you back the drill pressure off when nearly through. Main thing to make sure is that the drill being used has a clutch and not to use the hammer action as it damages the diamond tips of the core.

The core has a pilot bit in the centre. It's best to start the drilling off with the pilot in place then remove it once the core is started, otherwise it slows drilling down.

The entrance plates are made from 12mm exterior cement board and cut using a tile cutter blade in a standard Jigsaw. The entrance holes were cut out by drilling through with a masonry bit big enough to get the Jigsaw in to then cut out the shape. To try and avoid the birds confusing entrances, I made some of the holes semi-circle shapes. They're all 29mm by 75mm. The runways inside the tubes are made from the same material as the entrances, glued into place using Sticks Like All Weather Adhesive. 

All of the entrances and runways were sealed with a brick sealant called Stormdry prior to painting. The tubes and entrance plate assemblies were then sealed into the wall using an exterior sealant.

The pipe used is a standard 110mm (external diameter) soil pipe, available at most DIY stores.

To match the brickwork I bought a number of Sandtex tester pots and mixed them in situ on the ladder to match the surrounding bricks - adding sand to get the correct texture.
The boxes are made from 12mm marine ply and are all 450mm x 310mm internally. The internal height is 200mm apart from a few boxes which needed to be reduced in order to fit them into the space. 

All of the boxes are wrapped in insulation to try and reduce heat transfer from the loft which gets hot during the summer. The angled brackets which the boxes are screwed to the wall with are available from B&Q. I've then sealed around any gaps between the box and the wall with a gap filler. The hinged backs have an acrylic viewing panel in them which have slideable covers on the outside - just in case the loft light is turned on accidentally!


9 holes made wth a core drill

Before fitting the entrances
Component assembly line
Entrance tube with entrance face fitted
Test fitting an entrance

1 box with back open
1 nest box
9 nest boxes
Close up of exterior

4 comments:

  1. Looking really neat! May the birds find them swiftly!

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  2. I want to do that. I'd like to take down all unused boxes on my gable to create the above

    Mark
    N Ireland

    ReplyDelete
  3. Wow! This is a very useful blog and I really help us so much. Thank you for sharing valuable information.
    custom gable boxes

    ReplyDelete