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10 messages
19/06/2013 at 01:03

Having just added 11 blueberry plants and 3 redcurrant plants to my garden I noticed that despite being young plants they are absolutely covered in fruit. And suddenly it clicked that I need to build a fruit cage to keep the birds out (the birds in my garden are quite in abundance). Been looking to buy the materials in order to build the fruit cage myself. Cost is certainly a deciding factor here. Dont get me wrong, I cant afford to spend £150+ in a cage (6' x 12') but I dont want to buy something that is cheap and will last me a year or two only.

I prefer the 25mm aluminium tubes however I have noticed that the internet retailers do not sell the rest of the joints/hinges/connectors for the 25mm tubing. Generally they sell the 19mm ones. Is the 19mm aluminium tubing good enough? At a thickness of 1mm it sounds pretty fragile to me unless I am mistaken?

Any advice/recommendations in this area from anyone? What am I best going for? Anyone know of a decent website they can recommend?

19/06/2013 at 03:38

Agriframes

19/06/2013 at 07:02

19/06/2013 at 12:03

Try two westss and elliot, cheaper than agriframes.  I have an awkwardly shaped site that I wanted to use for a fruit cage, I sent them the measurements and they sorted out exactly what I needed, sent it out with instructions - excellent value.  They do their things in various thicknesses etc., so yu cafn choose what you can afford and what your preferred appearance is. I find the cage excellent, as we grow currants, apples, cherries, bluberries gooseberries etc, and would have little fruit without it. 

19/06/2013 at 21:41
Bookertoo wrote (see)

Try two westss and elliot, cheaper than agriframes.  I have an awkwardly shaped site that I wanted to use for a fruit cage, I sent them the measurements and they sorted out exactly what I needed, sent it out with instructions - excellent value.  They do their things in various thicknesses etc., so yu cafn choose what you can afford and what your preferred appearance is. I find the cage excellent, as we grow currants, apples, cherries, bluberries gooseberries etc, and would have little fruit without it. 

 

Funny you mention it because Two Wests and Elliott is the webiste that I have been looking for and found to be the cheapest around. Is the tubing of your cage 19mm or 25mm?

20/06/2013 at 14:23

No idea just now, it's been in situ for quite a long time now - I think it is the heavy at 25 mm, but as in all these things, try to buy the best you can afford - it will pay you in the end.  I had to replace my old one as I forgot to put the wide netting on the roof for the winter, and the weight of the  snow bent the previous poles in half!  So, do buy wide winter netting to keep the pigeons out, and put it up so you can get the roof netting on and off easily - or you won't,  because you will be cold and tired and don't think snow weighs that much ............ and be in trouble just as I was!

20/06/2013 at 22:10

Rather than buying a full ready made cage I decided to calculate what I need and but the compnents so that I can put together myself. The only reason I didnt want to get the ready made frame was because I am not keen on the plastic netting they come with. So I have ordered the frame in 19mm tubing together with all the connectors to put it together and to build the door with. I have also ordered the netting separately which is galvanised chicken wire 25mm hole. Got the ground pegs as well. 

 

The reason I went for the 19mm tubing (apart from being affirdable) is because I do not intend to keep the cage up in the winter period. In fact as soon as the fruit (blueberries, fourberries and redcurrants) is ripe and harvested I intend to take the chicken wire off.

If I take the chicken wire off should I dismantle the frame as well or leave it as it is?

22/06/2013 at 14:03

The tubing and connectors arrived yesterday (impressed by the speed of delivery) from Two Wests & Elliott. The only problem i'm having is that the tubing seems to be a bit tight and the connectors wont fit in all the way. They go in half way and get stuck and not push any further. i dont want to exercise too much force coz im worried of breaking the connectors. Does anyone have any suggestions for this?

 

22/06/2013 at 15:55

What are the connectors made of?  If plastic, lubricate with a few drops of washing-up liquid as this will not react with the plastic like oil-based products can and will wash off in the rain - a plumbers trick for any kind of plastic pipe joints.  If aluminium, then remove any manufacturing burrs and tap them in with a rubber mallet.

24/06/2013 at 01:11

They're nylon connectors. Tried the washing up liquid but that didnt work. In the end tried tapping them with a rubber mallet and that worked fine. My only worry with these is that when I have to take the thing apart the connectors will very likely break inside the tubing. They are way too tight to come out by rotating counterclockwise.

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