Abode and Tower

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staralfur
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Abode and Tower

Post by staralfur » Thu Feb 19, 2009 4:07 pm

The Abode - A Review by Robb Howells

The Abode is a cage which offers plenty in terms of space, value for money, design and practicality. It’s the epitome of a product which meets all of these points, and surpasses expectation in every way. I have never felt the urge to write a review on a product before, but because of this cage being so far under the radar I feel obligated to let everyone know how great it really is. During this review I hope to illustrate why this cage should be the next habitat for your family of rats.


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Space


These are the measurements I took of the Abode –

Abode – 80cm x 56cm x 95cm

Some extra dimensions -

Height (With wheels) – 95cm
Height of actual cage – 86cm
Cage door space – 36cm x 29cm
Height of base – 4.5cm
Bar spacing – 2cm

Quality

Although cage space can be a nice feature, it’s also important to consider the quality of a cage. Luckily, this is the first thing I noticed when I pulled the abode out of its box. Even dismantled I could tell that the cage was made from good, strong metal. The frame feels sturdy and solid, and doesn’t feel cheap in the slightest. The bars are also coated black, and the Abode also comes with a convenient wire-platform and ladder which slot nicely onto any part of the cage.


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Wire-platform, with ladder leading into their napping house.


If this all wasn’t enough, it also comes with a large hammock. From the only official picture of the Abode on-line, the hammock looks like a cheap, nasty, low-quality wretch which will be ripped to shreds in seconds. This actually turned out to be a quality, padded hammock which is held in place by strong key-ring style clips. This, for me, simply summed up the quality of the entire cage.


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Much appreciated freebie hammock with circular padding


Assembly couldn't be easier. It's straight-forward, simple and the entire cage was ready to go within around 20 minutes.


Practicality

This, to me, is the most important aspect of the cage. This is where The Abode seems to shine most. For example, although sturdy and dense – When mantled the cage is a little heavy. But instead of opting for lighter, less reliable bars – the Abodes flat-pack option, combined with it being on wheels (which are removable, if you prefer), completely solves the problem. (The wheels also come with brakes to fix your cage where it stands, which my partner thought was sweet). This is just one of the many ways that the Abode is a practical cage.


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An example of the abode wheels.


The bar spacing is wide enough for your rats to poke their noses out and get some fresh air, and for you to give them strokes and belly rubs through them. However, they are not wide enough to let them try squeezing their heads out. Bar spacing is perfect for adult rats. (Mod Note: Please be aware that this comment represents the experience and opinion of the OP: some members may find that 2cm is sufficient space for slim females to escape) I’m unsure about young babies (Bar spacing clocking in at 2cm), but my youngest Keith is happy. He’s around 14 weeks old. This also makes for hanging (usually awkward) Ferplast platforms a breeze. The bars are mostly vertical, which seems to encourage the rats to use the enrichment to climb to the top, rather than the bars themselves (Which always resulted in urinating all over bars).


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Keith catching some breeze.


The bars also compliment the thin base perfectly, as my rats really seem to appreciate having the extra ventilation of ammonia at the bottom of the cage, and it’s also nice to be able to see them clearly when play-fighting at the bottom. This point brings me to the slide-out tray. I use Ecobedding in my cage, and it seems to compliment the slide-out tray well in the fact that both the tray and the bedding are really light. I don't see why another brand of litter would be a problem either. This makes for quick, simple and easy litter-changes. This is a very practical feature which makes keeping the litter fresh simple. The cage simply stays on its legs whilst you go about your cleaning routine.


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The tray slides out with ease.


Speaking of cleaning, the large door enables you to reach any area of the cage for a quick wipe down or bedding change. This is also a huge help in rearranging the cage. Put it this way, when it was empty I found I could actually go waist deep in the cage to hang the hammocks! When shut, the door is held by a simple but effective bar – Which makes for a secure, escape free Abode.


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Simple but effective


The Aesthetic

Now that the big technical bit is over, let’s discuss what really matters – How it looks! Personally, I love it. The all black colour of the cage, combined with its sturdy frame, and convenient legs makes the cage feel altogether more like a piece of furniture, rather than an actual cage. Combined with the enrichment of your choice, the cage really can blend in and be a part of your room, instead of being an eye-sore. The short legs and wheels also turn the cage into a nice, safe bolt-spot for skittier rats during free-range time, and it's nice to be able to pop the hoover underneath when cleaning.


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Spacious, with a large door for ease of access.


Some Negatives

Please note that these are things which I simply had to think up to give you a fair and balanced account of the Abode. Firstly, bar spacing. I haven’t had any extremely young ones in it yet so I have no idea if they’re capable of squeezing through 2cm wide bars. Also, the vertical bars could result in it being a pain to hang water bottles, you may find that you need to leave them high up from whichever platform they’re on. But please note that this is completely dependent on how and where you hang your enrichment. Also, the bar spacing on the platform and ladder is very wide and my boys did struggle to walk on it. This was solved by asking for some free sample carpet from a carpet-shop and cutting it to the size of the platform. My rats now have a bit of purple shag where the bars used to be. But really, a piece of cardboard would suffice in doing the same job.


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Yeah baby.


Lastly, the cage is big, and combined with the weight I wouldn’t try carrying it at distance (I don’t see why you’d need to though with the wheels). That said, I can manage to lift it from the ground assembled, with all the enrichment (and rats) in it easily, and I’m a small guy. Also, it’s a fair drop from the top, even for super-rats. Be sure to provide plenty of hammocks, platforms etc... to minimize injury.


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A long way to the top!


To Conclude


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A final glimpse.


In my eyes, this cage is perfect. It caters to both mine and my four boys needs (which are two things which scarcely go hand in hand with cages). They really appreciate the extra space, and is a welcomed new home for my rats. I just hope that this review has shed some light onto how great this cage really is, and maybe persuade you to save a bit of money by picking up the Abode instead, this cage deserves just as much consideration as any of its competitors. Because it really is a worth-while investment for any rat-owner. If you’re considering the next cage for your mischief and can't quite stretch to a tower - please consider the Abode. It’s about time it got the recognition it deserves.


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Rise and shine, Eddie.


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Keith and Nibbles - Greedy Roans.


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Popcorn, the camera shy one.


Any further questions - Please feel free to PM me.

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BasilTheRat
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Re: Abode

Post by BasilTheRat » Fri Apr 03, 2009 10:33 am

Abode Review - By Andy Joiner
Overall Rating: :smileyrat: :smileyrat: :smileyrat: :smileyrat: :smileyrat:

Pros:
  • Excellent build quality, high quality thick bars. This is a cage which will last for years.
  • Massive front door for easy access.
  • Decent size, should provide ample room for up to four rats. (80x50x85cm)
  • Bundled hammock, which is also reasonable quality.
  • Sliding floor tray for quick cleaning.
  • Flat-Packed. This is great for transporting and storing the cage while not in use.
  • The price. From the right online store, this cage is an absolute bargain! (I paid only £60)

Cons:
  • Horizontal bars are spaced far apart, which makes hanging things a bit more difficult.
  • Supplied shelf and ladder are poor in my opinion. These should ideally be replaced with solid shelves and better ladders.
  • Assembly was a little tricky. Putting the cage together is really a two-person job!
  • Cage is rather weighty, at roughly 17kgs.

Overall I think this is a brilliant cage, and certainly a huge improvement over my previous one. I would highly recommend it to anyone. It is quality at a bargain price, and makes a wonderful home for my rats!

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Andy and the ratties: Seven, Kes, Luna, Ada, Orion, Bandit
:rainbow: Janeway, Shandy, Deanna, Izzy, Kira
And the youngest of the family is moving with authority,
Building castles by the sea, he dares the tardy tide to wash them all aside...

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Lloy-D2788
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Re: Abode

Post by Lloy-D2788 » Wed Jun 10, 2009 8:39 am

I have the tower which is the larger version of this cage! I would agree with all the points above however would like to add that substrate can be flicked around everywhere due to the shallow base, especially if you use biocatolet or similar paper based cat litter safe for ratties! I use ecopetbed now and I still have to keep the modifications i made on my cage! See below:

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Over all though a very good cage at a very good price! 8)
Lloyd x

Eximius Rats - 'Excellence is a fine pursuit'
North of England Rat Society - Promoting excellence in the care and breeding of fancy rats

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sabrinasky
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Re: Abode and Tower

Post by sabrinasky » Mon Aug 10, 2009 1:13 pm

I Love my adobe just a pain how they chuck the floor covering our so easy I tried tying a sorta skirt on it but now hoave put a grill on to of the substrate .

Perhaps vertical bars might be better.

No problem with them chewing the base at all.
My only real moan was my 4 young boys using this cage worked out how together they could actually use their combined weight to push the bottom tray out enough to escape.

I am about to buy another Adobe now as being so sturdy it is also a super cage to place a freddy2 on top.

Not sure how many rats you would recommend to go in it, but as many as 4 or 5 buck’s fully grown bucks have used this cage and seemed very happy.

Jan xx

mod note: Post trimmed to leave just the review comments.
email: ratz@zaxxan-firenza.co.uk
http://www.zaxxan.dsl.pipex.com/rats/index.htm
Zaxxan-Firenza is a NFRS registered rattery

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SargentEllie
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Re: Abode and Tower

Post by SargentEllie » Thu Aug 27, 2009 5:15 pm

i love this cage apart from the naff tray, its far to shallow and really i may as well throw the substrate straight on the the floor on cleanout day :lol:
Hot and righteous Ellie and the boys ..... and *cough* erm girls

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pitterpat
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Re: Abode and Tower

Post by pitterpat » Tue Jan 26, 2010 8:19 am

I have the tower for my girls :D I think the cage is great and my girls seem to love all the space :D

However as stated above the shallow tray has resulted in my girls kicking all the substrate out of the cage and I've had to make some modifications (some perspex (sp) cable tied around the bottom of the cage).

Some of the bars (particularly the bars around the top of my cage) do seem to be quite widely spaced apart - I had to move a couple of my girls out of the cage for a time when they were babies as they could squeeze through the bars so if you have young, small does this is something to bear in mind.

Whilst the cage is big and quite heavy it is on wheels so can be moved around.

The doors on the cage are very large allowing easy access when cleaning/hanging hammocks.

I find that I need loads of hammocks in my cage - don't want the girls falling from a height of their shelves so need lots of hammocks just in case :D

As said in previous posts the shelves and ladders are the best quality but they are ok if covered with something e.g. strip of vetbed, bit of lino :D

All in all I love the cage, its fairly easy to clean and the girls seem to love all the space :hearts:
Freya
----------
Girlies: Sen, Sashimi, Wanda & Squishy
Boysies: Horatio, Hermes, Gulliver, Quill, Mort, Errol, Fable & Puck
R.I.P. Sushi, Igor, Bellarix and Keith xxx

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Feliss
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Re: Abode and Tower

Post by Feliss » Tue Nov 02, 2010 11:53 am

The Abode.

I got this cage after having a Furet XL and hating it.

Size:
- I had 5 in here, but 4 now - 1 old girl, 2 young girls, young neutered buck.
- It is large, but doesn't seem oppressive. It's long and high, oblong rather than square.
- While it doesn't have a deep base, I use cut out Correx as barriers to stop substrate coming out. Just sweep up any bits they chuck out.
- The plastic tray hasn't been an issue for me, my rats have chewed it but not majorly.

Access:
- Has a front door on one side, that folds down and acts as nice little ramp.
- I thought I might miss the top access, but I haven't noticed it at all really.

General:
- Such a sexy cage. I love the black coating. It just looks good!
- The wheels are great as I move the cage about, and it fits through my doors!
- Was worried about lack of horizontal bars, but again hasn't really been an issue for the crew. They climb nps, and I'm just a bit more inventive when hanging things.
- Easy to clean, love the slide out tray.

While I loved the Furet Plus, I love this cage little bit more and can't find much from with it. I'd recommend this cage to everyone, and I'll only get a different cage if I suddenly get lots more rats ^.^

:dumbo: :dumbo: :dumbo: :dumbo: :dumbo: / 5
:dumbogirly: Keiko // Yami // :girly: Mei // :dumbo: SS
:rainbow: Ratty // Psycho // Buster // Akira // Hoody

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