Building the Walls

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Sherolyn-Basement Bettas

Before we actually get to adding the walls, we need to make the frame a bit more solid. Carefully pick up the frame and flip it over. Run the glue along the entire front seam and both sides taking care not to glue to the back of the condo. Tilt the condo on its front so you can run a good bead of glue along both front corners. Allow it to sit 30 minutes or so then carefully remove the tape securing the back and remove it. Remember one side of the plastic has been removed so take care when sitting it aside.

Now take the 11 pieces that are to be  your wall and hold the bunch together and sit them on the shorter side. Since that kinda didn’t make sense.. what you are doing is seeing which pieces are a bit longer than the others. Because you really can’t have pieces cut precisely without paying a lot for it.. you have to work with the irregularities that come up. Some of these pieces are going to be a bit longer or shorter and bunching them together on end will let you see that. Then put then in order from tallest to shortest.. and put the pile down with the tallest ones on the top.  The whole idea here is we are starting the walls from the center and working towards each end. It is a lot easier to glue in a bow shape rather than little ‘s’ curves over the 4″ span from cell to cell.

Take that top piece.. the longest one.. remove the plastic films and line it up with the center mark. It should be fairly easy to line up bottom and side with the markings you made on the protective film. Check for fit. You are wanting to get a water tight seal so you don’t want anything way out of square or any bumps that show a lot of daylight between pieces because that kind of space will be difficult to fill with the glue. I know it seems like you could just go over the joint with a heavier duty glue [we do have it for such a reason].. but as this comes together it becomes a real pain to work in the 4″ cells. Rotate the wall untill the best fit is established. When you get a good fit take your glue and glue along the bottom edge and add a tack to the top. A heavy application at the top front will cause the glue to run down the plexi.. often across where you will be viewing. So, just get a dab to hold it in place and save the heavier glueing for when you can turn the condo on its side. Then sit there and wait until it sets up.. a few minutes or so. I did not use clamps and don’t feel they are really needed for this part. But, it does take time.

Then, take the next wall piece and line it up with a mark on one side or the other from the center. Check for fit and glue bottom and tack top side like the other piece. Take the next wall piece and this time install it on the other side of the center piece. Check for fit then glue. Continue adding walls alternating from side to side until done. The shortest pieces are going to be closer to the sides and the longer walls will be in the center. By now you can see having the back of the condo off has made it easy to work with these inside pieces. We will continue to build from front to back and will add the back of the condo last.

Now go back and glue both sides of the walls to the bottom of the condo.  You are wanting to get a good solid bead so no water can creep through. Depending on when you started this you can let this set up over night or untill later in the day. Carefully flip the condo onto the front and apply glue to both sides of the walls again. Allow time to set up before moving on to the back wall.

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