Upright BACK View of Extra-Large Dog Cot I Just Finished
48" x 36" x 9"
(with right corner blow-up inset)
Making stuff feels a lot like making art.
For my second one of these (for inside the house), I wanted something lighter weight, but still heavy-duty and durable. I used 1 1/2 inch PVC pipe, special 4-way 90-degree fittings (which were priced much better than the 3-way fittings I wanted), ... PVC plugs for the extra holes, and PVC caps for the legs.
I made a secure backing, using chicken wire, whose edges I formed in such a way that I could secure it onto the frame with washer-head lathe screws. The wire is stretched tight, but it still has a nice give to it, almost like a trampoline.
For the final, soft cover, I used a double layer of inexpensive, polyester fiber outdoor rug, which I secured over top the chicken-wire and frame with more washer-head lathe screws.
Some cursing was required, especially when a spring clamp flipped off the frame and bopped me in the head at one point near the end.
So far, the intended recipient of this upgrade seems happy with it. Maybe an in-use photo will come next.
As I said, "sort of like art", because you have to use your hands and wits to sculpt it. ... I haven't made any real art lately.
Yeah, Mario, I actually thought about selling them, but I could not make one this size at a competitive price. There are commercially available dog cots this size, in the price range from $50 to $150 US at most. My materials cost alone would not allow this, and I'm not willing to cut corners on my structural objectives.
The commercially available cots that I've seen are not PVC pipe -- I think they are aluminum. I have my doubts as to whether the thinner fabric, by itself, on those would not sag unacceptably over time, under a large dog's weight -- that's why, at this size cot, I have tried to minimize sag over time by using the chicken wire backing. The commercial cots are more breathable, but, again, I would be concerned about the sag factor over time with fabric that thin, by itself, unsupported by a stronger backing. My surface treatment is not as breathable, but I feel confident that it is more durable and longer lasting at the given tension of the wire, which, again, has a nice give to it. Also, my width dimension of 36" is larger than all the commercial cots that I've seen. I think the commercial ones go too narrow on that dimension -- dog's need room to stretch out. I'm thinking the ideal configuration might be a square or a circle to allow for maximum dog stretch out at any orientation.
Honestly, I had envisioned putting in all the work to build this thing, only to have him reject it and lie on the floor. Thankfully, however, it was an instant success, ... as if he has had it all his life.
I'm still working on shaping his behavior to match his physical appeal. Some success there too.
That serious look is just a response to me calling his name to get him to look at the camera. Much of the other time, he looks like he is smiling, especially when he tries to become defiant and box with me.
Title: Cot-opia No. 1
Medium: Live dog with his bones on polyester fiber, on chicken wire, stretched on PVC-pipe pedestal frame
Dimensions: 48" x 36" x 9"
Date created: Cumulative 13 months from 2018-2020 (mainly live-dog growth time)
Description: The primary subject of this work is fugitive, meaning a fleeting moment of posture, captured spontaneously without prior planning or intent. The primary substrate, on the other hand, is durable and lasting, by contrast, thus presenting a juxtaposition of stability and chaos in the same visual field. This linkage of polar opposites in the materials of existence symbolizes the larger stage of universe upon which the great narrative of life and purpose unfolds, via a combination of stilted mechanism and raw organism. Capturing elements reminiscent of Duchamp's readymades, while, at the same time, providing an element reminiscent of Kernodle's fluidism, this work, in actuality, no longer exists in its original form, since the fugitive gesture has already dispersed into the infinite eternal now.