to Make a Boing
A boing is a
coiled rope that you hang from the ceiling or a hangar that most
birds just love to play on. They consist of a cotton or sisal rope
with a wire in the center.
A bit of preamble.
I don't think there is a right or wrong way to make a Boing, just
that you want it to serve its purpose. There are a couple of different
ways to do the ends. You can use an end cap like............
or you can use
a toy on the end and wrap the wire around the rope like.......
So, you have
to decide which way you are going to do the ends before you start.
For this demonstration, I am going to use a combination.
Also something to keep in mind, if you use (say) 12' of rope, this
does not mean you will end up with a Boing that is 12' long. Because
of the twisting action, and because you try to keep the wrap (twist)
fairly tight, you will probably end up with about a 9' Boing and
once curled, this will probably hang down about 5' depending on
how you wrap and stretch it. Probably the best length of rope to
use for a larger bird is about 8 or 9'. So now you need to pick
your rope and your wire, making it size appropriate for what birds
you expect to be using it. Remember with the wire, you want it to
be heavy enough to support the bird/s without stretching the Boing
out, but light enough so that it has some spring. Stainless steel
wire is probably the best but..............
The end caps
I use are just plastic ends for chair feet. I drill 2 holes in them
the same size as the wire.
Ok, are we ready????????
First, assemble the things you need. Rope, wire, wire cutters, toys,
end caps, tape.
time you are working with something like rope, make sure the ends
are secured or else it will all unwind.
So you want to get the
wire, up through the rope so that you can do whatever you have chosen
for your end. Loosen the twist on the rope a little and insert wire
and push through. (forgive some of the out of focus pictures)
For this one,
I opted for an end cap, so push wire through the cap.
But then I also decided
on a toy on top. (toy isn't made yet in photo) so I pushed wire
through the toy shape, made a loop and bent the wire down for the
end to go back inside the end cap. Insert wire into 2nd hole in
end cap, leaving the end of the wire safely away inside the cap.
Ok, now what
I do is use my glue gun and partially fill the end cap with hot
glue. I then push the rope up inside of the cap. This will hold
the rope in place from sliding down. As mentioned above, some people
just twist the wire around the rope to hold it in place.
I will then trim the
frayed bits of rope off, that didn't quite go into the end cap ....or
I'll trim them at some point and time :-)
So we have one
end done. Now you just need to get the rope onto the wire. You do
this with a twisting motion, you twist the natural weave of the
rope to loosen it, like we did when first inserting the wire, and
then you close the natural weave of the rope around thewire. You
do this until your rope is all done....down to the end.
You should now
be sitting with most of a Boing. The bottom will look just like
our top did initially.
Cut any excess
wire off that you won't need for finishing the end. Think how you
want to finish it. You will now probably need to loosen your rope
on the wire a bit, so you can pull it down to the end of the wire
and insert the end through, just like at the top. The bottom end
is not as important as the top end because it doesn't need to hold
the rope up in place. I often finish with the end caps so you put
the wire through one hole in the end, bend it, and if you want a
bell at the bottom put the bell on the wire now, and insert end
back into cap. Again, you can glue your rope in the cap. This time
I didn't use a cap, instead I used a large wooden ball. I thread
some of the rope through the ball, and the wire and made a loop
in the wire to hold it. I then tied knots in many of the rope strands
so the rope wouldn't untwist and put a few little babbles on some
of the rope strands. Watch what length you leave the strands. You
don't want this to become a dangerous toy for catching toes.
The only thing left to
do now is to bend your Boing into the shape you desire and finish
any toys you may have put on the Boing. This one was quite a large
Boing. I started with 11' of rope and here is my finished product.
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