Plans For A Purple Martin House

By | November 22, 2022

Plans For A Purple Martin House – I always liked the basic design of the T-14. It is a good house for martins and the design is just a little different from the normal looking purple martin house. The vertical compartments allow for a more compact style and a person can make them as big as he or she wants, assuming the pole can hold the load. Even with a little imagination and ingenuity, they can do a number of different things to improve the appearance of the house. If you don’t want such a big house, it can be converted into a T-10 with compartments shortened to 3 and 2 respectively.

The T-14 was originally designed by an Amish man named Andrew Troyer of Conneaultville, Penn. Andrew has hosted Martins for many years and really knows his stuff when it comes to taking care of them. However, his design simply uses round holes and no porch. The original design also mounts to a wooden pole and I’m just not a fan of wood for a Martin pole; much too cumbersome to work with and often warps or twists and will eventually rot.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

Plans For A Purple Martin House

It’s not hard to build a house at all, but when I made mine I made a few changes. Instead of a wooden pole, this mounts to a 12′ tall, Sched 80 Steel Pole.

Birdhouse See Rock City Purple Martin Bird House Feeder Garden Yard Rustic Decor 859928003019

I much prefer steel poles, no worries about twisting, twisting or rotting. However, to mount a Martin house on a round steel pole, a separate slide had to be designed and I show on this page how to do that. I simply took the basic vertical design concept and then I added some improvements:

Plans For A Purple Martin House

I added porches with built-in owl guards. Great Horned/Barred Owls are everywhere and can be big problems in martin colonies.

I added extra cane rods to the top of the house. Purple Martins love places to sit and chat.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

Retired Carpenter Builds Homes For Birds

I don’t use nesting cups. I feel they have cut down on nesting box size so I have eliminated them.

I used plastic molded inserts for the entrance with SREH’s. European starlings are also a big issue with purple martin habitats. Although the 2″ round holes are cut directly into the door, if starlings are an issue, I strongly suggest using them.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

Please note: I will not give fully detailed dimensions in instructions, but instead will give the basic dimensions that I used on this house or show some pieces with dimensions on them to give the idea of ​​what I did. It is assumed that the person who wants to build this unit has some basic woodworking knowledge and skills and I assume they know most woodworking terms and know what is meant and how to pre-drill the storage holes for the screws ‘.

Installing Purple Martin Housing Units In Southern Ontario

As you work through the project, you will notice that there are a number of “notes” on this page. They are there simply to help with how or why I did something. Maybe you know a better way…if so, use it. If not, mine works.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

To prevent this page from getting huge, I designed it mainly with ‘thumbnails’ for the images. To view the image ‘full size’, simply click on the thumbnail and a full version of the image will be activated. If it’s something with dimensions on it, you can just print it out and take it to the store. As we progress through the build cycle, I’ll describe what I did and maybe even a tip or two to make things easier for the average T-14 home builder.

I know some people will be ‘cost conscious’ but I suggest using materials that are strong enough to not only be safe for the birds but also safe for humans. I will not skimp on a winch just to save a few bucks when my own safety (or anyone else’s for that matter) is at stake. I am someone who simply loves quality.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

Purple Martin Nest Box Project — Olympic Peninsula Audubon Society

I built this house with Western Cedar. It is very strong and will last forever in the elements, even without painting if you want. If you can find it, cypress will also work well.

White pine will also work, but remember, it must be treated with a preservative such as Thompson’s Water Sealer. Let it sit for a few days to allow it to completely sink into the jaws and then a good primer and paint if it is expected to last in the elements for any length of time. Most lumber yards/home improvement stores sell shelving material and it’s the same size as Western Cedar and is a little cheaper, but usually has a lot more knots, so get a little extra just in case.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

Sorry, but I am NOT a big fan of ‘plywood’ for this type of construction. It is much too difficult to work with because the thickness is thinner layers of thinner wood (usually southern yellow pine) and will eventually separate when out in the elements, even if it is treated and painted. Plus, it’s much harder. ALL holes drilled into the edge must be pre-drilled and even so the screw will still separate the individual plies; allowing water to enter the wood. Some have said they used it with good results, but I didn’t have the same results on the first Martin house I built out of plywood. Oh, it looked great for about a year or two, but eventually it started to fall apart, so I don’t advocate using it anymore.

The Birds & The Bees: Choosing The Right Housing For Your Purple Martins

-1 lb of 3″, (actually only about a dozen of these are needed for the mounting frame)

Plans For A Purple Martin House

Shown here are some of the basic tools I used to build this T-14. There are of course more, but this should give you an idea of ​​what is needed.

Some of the tools are standard in any workshop or garage. The picture shows most of them, but there are a few more that make life much easier or are a real necessity in any wood shop.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

Home Bazaar Clubhouse Birdhouse For Purple Martins

A stable flat work surface. The photo shows old tables from a restaurant that were given to me when they were remodeled. I built a sturdy frame under them with casters one them and they work great. (I even draw plans for BB houses on mine). If you don’t have a shop bench/table, slide a piece of 3/4″ thick plywood over some saw horses.

And of course a table saw will go a long way in making things much easier.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

A jig saw is a must have. A little more difficult to work with the very small pieces, but required for some parts.

Best Dimensions For Birdhouse Entrance Holes

Wood clamps. There is an old woodworking adage that says, “You can never have enough wood clamps”. How true is that. I may have a bunch, but I’ve had times when I could use even more. If you work alone a lot like I do, a variety of wood clamps come in handy.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

A soft face (rubber) mallet/death blow. They work great for ‘pushing’ some pieces into place without damaging the surface of the wood.

A rigid scale. I like to use a variety of scales (or rulers if you will) when working with wood. It makes life much easier when trying to get those ‘exact’ dimensions or draw straight lines on my work pieces. One of mine even glued cork on the back to slide.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

How To Build A Purple Martin House To Attract Bug Eating Birds

A small palm sander comes in handy to get rid of any rough edges or splinters. A block of wood with sandpaper wrapped around it works equally well. Also, if you have curves, sandpaper wrapped around a piece of thick polystyrene foam works great to ‘soften’ the edges.

Ice pick. I have a bunch of these of different sizes. I make them on a grinder from old screwdrivers or screw a long cap screw into the end of a cut off broom handle and then grind the head to a fine point. I use them to punch small center marks for screws, like in the hinges or anywhere else where a puncture mark is required. Makes some types of screws start much easier.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

A good tape measure. One that clips to your belt or pocket (although I think they all do that now).

Purple Martin Nest Box

A compass, speed square, lots of pencils and marking tools and yes, a very “sharp” cutting tool or two. There are many varieties on the market. I use the utility type that folds up and fits in my pocket and if the blade ever gets dull I just change to a new blade.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

A long driver to match your drill. In this case you will be reaching through the housing to screw it to the pole and the drill just won’t fit far enough.

For the most part, most people will have a variety of these tools around their businesses and can adapt them to their needs.

Plans For A Purple Martin House

Handcrafted Purple Martin Cedar House

In case you have visited this page before, since the original creation of this website, I have had one

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