Building the Big Jungle Gym Front Door

The Front Door is a truly great feature of these cages.
The working hinges are a real convenience,
since you need to get in and out of your lizard's enclosure several times a day,
and the lower second door is brilliant.

Okay, let's get started.

Did you notice that the six corners around the door are just
single 45 degree connectors (with the [F] pvc plugs on each side),
unlike the doubled-up 45 degree connectors that form the three back corners?
Go ahead and put those in, if you haven't already.

The frame was easy!

So, let's add the top and bottom of the door,
to complete the cage frame shape.

Cut two [G] pvc poles.
Put the T connectors on the ends of each pole.

two 26" poles complete the frame.

Go ahead and put them in to complete the frame shape.

It gets a bit more difficult from here on out.

Now it's time to get down to the door construction itself.
Here's what it looks like completed... for reference.

Just follow along. It'll be worth the effort.

Let's build from the bottom up. To make the lower section of the door:
Cut two [H] poles and two [I] poles.
Assemble with three T connectors and one corner.

(If you plan to build the lower door-within-a-door,
you might want to skip down to the bottom of this page and read about how to do it.)

Cut two [F] pvc sections and put them in as shown: top and bottom.

The lower part of the door.

Slotting the hinges makes them work great.

The short sections sticking out of the two T connectors are
going to be hinges. To make them work well, you need to 'slot' them.

A jig saw works well to cut the slots. Be careful!

Keep your fingers out of the way!

Set the whole assembly in the door frame and put a T connector on the top right side,
connecting it to the cage frame. See how nice those hinges work now?

Push the small door together tightly.

For the left side, cut a [J] pole and top it with a T connector.
(No notches required - the hinges are only on the right side).

Next, cut a [K] pole and put it into the door on the left side top.

Keep at it. We're getting there.

You can congratulate yourself now, because if you made it this far...
the rest will be pretty easy.

The top of the door is just like the bottom - except bigger and upside down.

Top of the door assembly

Cut two [L] poles and two [M] poles.

Assemble with three T connectors and one corner connector.

Insert the two [F] sections of pvc into the two right-side T's, and slot them.

Add this top section to the cage door.

Making real progress now!

Cut another [B] pole for the lefthand side of the cage door frame.
Push and pull the pvc until the door fits nicely. Not bad!

Just one more tricky little thing to do...

Those wide gaps above and below the door have to be filled.

Cut two [N] pvc poles and put the Oversized T connectors on the ends.
(These are 1" x 1" x 3/4" T connectors).

Now here's the tricky part:

Use a jig saw to cut each T connector in half and trim their edges so they fit in the gap.

It's a little tricky, but you can do it.

Cable tie the top one in place, so it doesn't fall out when you open the door!
If you don't have any long cable-ties, just 'daisy-chain' two together.

Notice the [O] bolt and nut now added to keep the door securely shut.
Another bolt is positioned a similar distance from the bottom.

That's everything -- except adding the Lucite and maybe a lower door.

If you really want to go the extra mile and make an awesome door
here's how...

Use the same techniques you just used and make a small hinged door
to fit within the lower opening of the large door.

A hinged, door-within-a-door

Start by taking that original right side [I] pole and shorten the pole to [P].
Top it with a T connector with a slotted plug and
add another T and slotted plug on the bottom of it.

Add two [Q] poles and another [P] pole,
connect with two 90 degree corners,
and adjust everything for a nice snug fit.
Use velcro loops to hold the lower door shut,
or you can just drill for a longer bolt: [R].

Cut four more 1" x 1" x 3/4" Ts in half and make two more gap-filling poles, using two [S] poles.

Cable tie in a mesh rectangle -- and you've got a
safe and easy way to get food in and out of the cage,
no matter what mood your iguana is in!

Now that's a great door!

CAD Drawing by Anton C. Hriczko at

All of these measurements are listed in the Measurements & Materials List.

Now we've just got to do the ceiling, the windows, the back panels and the hanging shelves!

I hope that these plans are working out well for you.
I've put a great deal of time and effort into them.

If you've ordered the Measurements & Materials List from me. THANK YOU.

If you're using the plans without the Material List...
you're probably wasting an awful lot of your own time.

I can email you the itemized shopping list --
which includes more tips and explanations --
and all of the measurements, too.

You can mail a check for $19.95 to: Keith Van Zile
1125 Clare Avenue, West Palm Beach, FL 33401

or just use Paypal to get them nearly right away.



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