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View Full Version : Coroplast Alternatives Shower curtain/matte board



MaggieMae
02-03-10, 11:01 pm
I have a couple questions as I contemplate an alternative to coroplast based on materials I already own. I have huge sheets of matte board and foam core as well as a giant, partially cut up shower curtain.

This weekend I am going to try and finish my 2x3 cage so I can get Maggie out of her pet store cage.


Would matte board hold up okay do you think? It is the same stuff you use in a picture frame to border the image inside of it so it isn't real thick but its pretty solid. I could possibly reinforce it with foam core also if needed. However, I am thinking for a 2x3 cage, if it sits inside the grids and not on the outside, it might be strong enough.?.?



Do shower curtains repel all moisture? I'm not a big shower curtain expert, all our showers here have doors and not curtains. No moisture can get through a shower curtain right? How hard are they to keep clean versus coroplast? I know mine is one of those mildew resistant ones but I don't know if that will make any difference. They look kind of like they could smell more than plastic for some reason, like they could soak in some smell instead of resist it. I don't know why I think this though.

Anyone who has used a shower curtain alternative (I have been looking in the gallery also) that feels like they have any good suggestions or warnings about what not to do, these would be appreciated!

I'm thinking, cut the matte board to make the box, then maybe glue the shower curtain in place? I want to try and make it look pretty clean cut. The shower curtain would obviously run up the sides as well. Then again maybe this is a lot of work to save $15. :crazy:

I don't know, I think too much! :sad:

twilightwheek
02-03-10, 11:15 pm
Hmm. That sounds like it's a lot of work, since coroplast is a cakewalk! Even if you don't get the pre-scored from Sue, it handles really easily. Matte board could potentially absorb moisture and I worry it would disintegrate after a while (I'm an artist, and I use matte board frequently. It shouldn't get wet, it's basically fancy bleached cardboard and could get soggy or even mildew.) It could get stinky!

You can't clean it with water/vinegar because it will get mushy!

I know you want your baby out of a pet store cage, but if you can try to order the coroplast bottom from Sue, it really is worth it and I swear she waves a magic wand to get it to you in record time. I never waited more than a couple of days and it was there ahead of expected delivery time.

MaggieMae
02-03-10, 11:22 pm
My thought was that if I covered the matte board with shower curtain it would be water resistant. Matte board would definitely not be good on its own! I've spilled paint water on it enough to know this! ;)

I am more thinking on a financially practical standpoint. I estimate about $15 for three small sheets of coroplast from the sign shop in town. It isn't like $15 is going to break the bank. However, I am on a tight budget so I was just thinking if I had stuff that would work why not use it.

I WISH I had enough money to order from Sue, but with shipping it would be too much. :(

lissie
02-03-10, 11:29 pm
Check this site for coroplast.
GE Polymershapes, Branch Locator (http://www.sabicpolymershapes.com/polyshapes/PShapes/branchlocator/branchus.jsp)

They have warehouses all over US. I got my coroplast for $10. It's 4'x8'.

Piggynovice
02-03-10, 11:43 pm
So here is what I did. I actually used table covering plasitc that you get in the Walmart craft area, but you should be able to to the same thing with your shower curtain. I cut mine so you could fold it up into a box exactly like you would for coroplast. I used the clear packing tape like they say to hold down the flap. I also put some on the inner corner seam just to insure its water tight.

My cage actually has a floor made out of the grids. My liner goes inside and sits on top of them, so if you go from top level to deep level I have Fleece, towel, towel, towel, plastic, grids, floor. If you plan to make a bottom to the cage and put the liner directly on the grids there is no need making a box out of some other material. Most of the C&C cages use coroplast because its ridged and easy to clean. They dont put grids on the bottom of the cage, so the grids that make the walls of the cage are actually more of a fence. If you take the coroplast out then you only have a closed in area of the floor.

If you still want to make a box and not put grids on the bottom, I dont think matte board would be the best idea. If it gets even a little moisture in it, the moisture tends to stay in the board and mold. You want to find something that doesnt contain any type of paper component, just incase you get a leak. I would also say dont glue the liner into the box. You're going to want to be able to remove the liner for cleaning. Also if you end up with a leaky corner, glued down that moisture is now stuck between the liner and your box. That will result in one big yuck.

As far as the shower curtain goes it really depends on your shower curtain. Some shower curtains are made out of plastic only. These would be the ones that are clear in areas or would be called a shower curtain liner. They literally feel like a sheet of plastic. Some shower curtains are more decorative and have more cloth proterties. These will absorb some water. They will be water resistant, but not water proof like the liners or all plastic curtains are. If you are unsure what you have, you can get a shower curtain liner at most dollar stores.

Some of this will also depend on what type of bedding you are using. If you go with fleece, there is no real need for a sturdy box because you wont be lifting the whole thing out to dump it etc. You will also have less of an issue with moisture because, if you do it right, the towels maintain a lot of the moisture. With bedding like carefresh, you will want a sturdy box for the bedding. It will make cleaning a ton easier.

Sorry this is so long, but I hope it helps. :)

MaggieMae
02-04-10, 12:46 am
Lissie - thanks a ton, I actually used your suggestion earlier and checked, but the locations are so far out of reach it isn't really any better of a deal than I already have. That really looks like a great deal though, I wish I were closer! There are only two locations for IL. :(

My shower curtain is like, the second curtain. It is clear plastic, the kind that goes behind the cloth decorative one.

I was going to make my grids like a big box with a bottom but put the matte board on the floor and sides. I will be using mostly fleece, I am still playing around with all of that though because her cage is so small now a litter box is kind of in the way so I just leave some of it as carefresh.

So piggynovice, thanks a bunch for all of the suggestions. Now I kind of feel like this whole shower curtain matte board thing isn't a good idea.

I am just, really frustrated. I want this to look as nice as possible. I thought that might be a good temporary solution until I could afford to order some colored coroplast but now I feel like its just more work than it is worth and I should suck it up and buy the coroplast colored or not.

I also just realized I bought the wrong grids. I have some that are 9x9 but now I think I have to exchange them out which is going to be a HUGE PAIN since I have half of my life resting in those shelves! :X My brain just doesn't function sometimes...

Has anyone ever used plexiglass for the same function as coroplast? I think a frosted plexiglass ledge would look cute. Not that I can do that unless I found some in our basement, which actually, isn't impossible. Is that bad for the piggies?

Tessa Bea
02-04-10, 01:29 am
I have made three cages with Shower Curtains, grids, fleece and towels alone.

The cheap plastic kinds are totally water repellent and impermeable. You don't want one of the fancy outer decorative curtains.

I place the shower curtain on the ground, place the towels on top, then the fleece, and the grids on top of that.

I have carpet, and it's never gotten wet through the shower curtain.

I found shower curtains for $3 at Big Lots, as opposed to the $20 coroplast I used for my first cage.

Clean up is easier too, no pesky corners for stuff to get trapped in.

lissie
02-04-10, 02:49 am
Has anyone ever used plexiglass for the same function as coroplast? I think a frosted plexiglass ledge would look cute. Not that I can do that unless I found some in our basement, which actually, isn't impossible. Is that bad for the piggies?

Plexiglass works too but they cost a lot more than coroplast. There are some in the gallery.

Allysse's cage (2007) - Guinea Pig Cage Photos (http://www.guineapigcages.com/photos/showphoto.php?photo=9369)

C&C Cage is done!! :D - Guinea Pig Cage Photos (http://www.guineapigcages.com/photos/showphoto.php?photo=12464)

Cavy Condo - Guinea Pig Cage Photos (http://www.guineapigcages.com/photos/showphoto.php?photo=15229)

wood and plexiglass cage - Guinea Pig Cage Photos (http://www.guineapigcages.com/photos/showphoto.php?photo=16932)

If you have some lying around, you can use them.

akstrohm
02-04-10, 08:15 am
Did you look around much for coroplast? And try the store locator? You should be able to get it cheaper.

Tessa Bea
02-04-10, 11:25 am
Oh, I forgot to give my opinion on the Matte Board in my other post.

It's kind of like cardboard from my experience (my ex was a photographer) so if it got wet, that'd be the end of your box. I wouldn't use it.

EDIT- Akstrohm, not sure if the question was directed towards me or not, but $20 was the cheapest I could find around here. Only one sign shop in town had it, and I was quoted even more in the neighboring towns. Either way, I like shower curtains much better, for cages on hard surfaces. My coroplast box cage is on top of two dressers that aren't quite as wide as the cage, so it's more beneficial for that use but more difficult to move about and to clean.

xoLauraox09
02-04-10, 04:41 pm
I have made three cages with Shower Curtains, grids, fleece and towels alone.

The cheap plastic kinds are totally water repellent and impermeable. You don't want one of the fancy outer decorative curtains.

I place the shower curtain on the ground, place the towels on top, then the fleece, and the grids on top of that.

I have carpet, and it's never gotten wet through the shower curtain.

I found shower curtains for $3 at Big Lots, as opposed to the $20 coroplast I used for my first cage.

Clean up is easier too, no pesky corners for stuff to get trapped in.
My cages are the same! I second this! :D

Kipsie
02-04-10, 05:44 pm
sign shops in IL - YELLOWPAGES.COM (http://www.yellowpages.com/IL/Signs?search_terms=sign+shops&sort=alpha)

There are the sign stores in your state.

There is also Freecycle to get fleece and plexiglass, and giant used political signs (made from coroplast). You an get the signs yourself from lots, but after elections.

Flea-markets can sell big dog kennels. I used a 12 square foot dog kennel before my cc, with small grid holes, for my pigs (it was 15 dollars for the entire thing). Maybe you can even find a big enough play pen of some sort to work with.

But you still need coroplast, yes? I know i've seen some people using tiles, protected wood, empty plastic pools made for kids...

MaggieMae
02-04-10, 08:36 pm
Thanks

I know IL has tons of sign shops and I have found coroplast but it just isn't really what I wanted. I suppose I could go steal some election signs. ;)

I will figure it out. I am going to call the shops in my old college town since it isn't quite as far as Chicago and a lot less traffic. By the time I get to a sign shop in Chicago and back I might as well have ordered it for what I would pay in gas and that doesn't even cover the stress of the trip!

It is weird, I live in a pretty big city, one would think that there would be more places that would sell coroplast.

MaggieMae
02-06-10, 02:46 pm
Wow.. Might I add, just to vent a little, my boyfriend told me he would buy my coroplast for my guinea pig so I called a bunch of places and we drove a couple places. I have to ask though, am I the only person who has gotten some form of attitude from sign shops?

Every sign shop I called acted like they wanted nothing to do with me once I explained what it was for. One of them wouldn't even quote me a price and told me I had to order it from their supplier if I wasn't going to have a sign printed. Another shop said they had to quote me based on getting the sign printed because they don't just sell it which for a 2X3 cage was going to be close to $40 but that color and white were the same price.

WELL, anyway I found a plastics place I am going to call Monday. Hopefully they are a little nicer about it.

My vent is over..

hurleyslave
05-05-10, 10:40 am
Yeah, I called this sign shop in Brooklyn and he was pretty rude to me when he found out that I wanted a 4'x8' sheet of coroplast but with no sign service printed on it. He said that he was a sign printing store and that if I wanted coroplast, I needed to call a supplier. RUDE...

Heady
05-05-10, 12:37 pm
I used foam core and a shower curtain at first. Then I finally found someone that would sell me a piece of coroplast for less than $80 and finally found a way to get it home. But it wasn't a huge piece. At the time it fit the cage, but then I changed my cage (again) and used coroplast, shower curtain and more foam core. The most recent change is coroplast, foam core, tape and contact paper.

I wouldn't use matte board even with a shower curtain, unless you ran the curtain up the side, and even then it probably wouldn't be ideal. Foam core is my hero, though.

I love convenience, so I like to use what I can easily get my hands on and the most cost effective thing for me (when it comes to building stuff). Unfortunately, coroplast isn't it, so I use the other stuff until I can get more coroplast! :) Next time I get coroplast, I'm getting a few sheets, though, because I change the cage so much.

Also, all the sign shops I called that were less than a mile (or less than 10) from me were HUGE (pick your expletive). Finally, I found a frame shop and the guy was really, really nice (huge animal fan...I spent almost an hour in the store talking about the feral cat colony across the road from my apartment complex). I got a 4X6 piece of coroplast for $20 (if I remember right). Kinkos wanted $80. :eye-poppi All the other places were at least 20 minutes away and 20 minutes in a cab is lots of money (to me).