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  1. #1
    BPnet Veteran gunkle's Avatar
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    Ball Python enclosure build

    So I have decided on a build. I am going to make 2 separate enclosures each roughly 36X24X16. I have designed them on Fusion 360 (a CAD program). I will be building them out of 1 sheet of Hardwood Plywood each and Plexiglas. I am not doing it to try to save money vs buying a pre-made plastic one. I enjoy "projects". My wife says I need to have one at all times to be happy. I have always enjoyed making things myself.

    Materials List:

    2 - 4X8 hardwood plywood. Had Home Depot cut it for me. $53./ea. - total $106.
    1 - Bottle Gorilla wood glue $3.97
    1 - Box of Screws. I like to use trim head screws so they are less visible, Since I am using glue also it will be fine. $5.20
    1.5 qrt. - Black Pond epoxy (Hope this is enough for both) $65.
    1 - Vivarium Electronics VE-300x2 Dual Zone Thermostat $194.99 on sale for $175.49
    2 - RBI 12.5" x 22.5" 80 Watt Radiant Heat Panel $89.99 on sale for $80.99 each - total $161.98
    2 - AcuRite 00891A3 Indoor/Outdoor Digital Thermometer with Humidity $7.99 / ea. - total $15.98
    1 - Etekcity Lasergrip 1080 Non-Contact Digital Laser Infrared Thermometer $18.99
    1 - Reptile Prime (lets see if 1 bag is enough for 2 cages) $20.99

    Total spent so far: $573.60


    Still need to pick up:
    Hinges. Thinking of going with a hidden hinge like a cabinet. May make entire front of enclosures be a door.
    latches. Need to make sure they lock somehow so kids can't get in without me.
    Stain for exterior. I like light wood stains. May have some on shelf from last project.
    Plexiglas from local glass shop so I don't have to bother cutting it.

    The wife and kids all want to help with the build. Glad everyone is excited (helps get the cost by with less difficulty). My 9 year old daughter spent 2 hours yesterday asking questions about BP health and care. I will update as the build progresses.
    1.0 Bearded Dragon
    0.1 Super Pastel Lesser Ball Python
    1.0 Pastel Bamboo Ball Python
    0.0.1 Halmahera Blue Tongue Skink
    0.0.2 Crested Gecko
    1.2.0 Guinea Pigs
    0.1 Dog
    0.2 Cats

  2. The Following User Says Thank You to gunkle For This Useful Post:

    KevinK (02-06-2019)

  3. #2
    BPnet Veteran gunkle's Avatar
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    Images: 2

    Re: Ball Python enclosure build

    Pile of pre cut wood. Saved a lot of time having them cut it for free.

    Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
    1.0 Bearded Dragon
    0.1 Super Pastel Lesser Ball Python
    1.0 Pastel Bamboo Ball Python
    0.0.1 Halmahera Blue Tongue Skink
    0.0.2 Crested Gecko
    1.2.0 Guinea Pigs
    0.1 Dog
    0.2 Cats

  4. #3
    Registered User Treeman's Avatar
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    Re: Ball Python enclosure build

    Very cool your daughter is interested in this. Sounds like you have a future snake keeper on your hands!

  5. #4
    Registered User pretends2bnormal's Avatar
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    Re: Ball Python enclosure build

    You should be good on the 1 bag of reptile prime. I get 2 full 4'x2' cages out of 1 bag.

    Sounds like a fun project, looking forward to seeing progress pics, or at least the finished project.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

  6. #5
    BPnet Veteran gunkle's Avatar
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    Re: Ball Python enclosure build

    Quote Originally Posted by pretends2bnormal View Post
    You should be good on the 1 bag of reptile prime. I get 2 full 4'x2' cages out of 1 bag.

    Sounds like a fun project, looking forward to seeing progress pics, or at least the finished project.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
    How thick do you put it down. Only post I could find said 1/2 inch.

    Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
    1.0 Bearded Dragon
    0.1 Super Pastel Lesser Ball Python
    1.0 Pastel Bamboo Ball Python
    0.0.1 Halmahera Blue Tongue Skink
    0.0.2 Crested Gecko
    1.2.0 Guinea Pigs
    0.1 Dog
    0.2 Cats

  7. #6
    Registered User pretends2bnormal's Avatar
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    Re: Ball Python enclosure build

    Quote Originally Posted by gunkle View Post
    How thick do you put it down. Only post I could find said 1/2 inch.

    Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
    Eh... probably close to 1 inch before the snakes pack it down. It is fairly loose initially. Ends up being around 1/2" packed, but I do clear it out from under water bowls so that saves me some coverage.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

  8. The Following User Says Thank You to pretends2bnormal For This Useful Post:

    gunkle (02-01-2019)

  9. #7
    BPnet Veteran gunkle's Avatar
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    Re: Ball Python enclosure build

    Quote Originally Posted by Treeman View Post
    Very cool your daughter is interested in this. Sounds like you have a future snake keeper on your hands!
    We have spent a bit of time looking at different photos on here together seeing what we like and might want. She is very excited. We both like the varieties with a lot of yellow in them.

    Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
    1.0 Bearded Dragon
    0.1 Super Pastel Lesser Ball Python
    1.0 Pastel Bamboo Ball Python
    0.0.1 Halmahera Blue Tongue Skink
    0.0.2 Crested Gecko
    1.2.0 Guinea Pigs
    0.1 Dog
    0.2 Cats

  10. #8
    Registered User MR Snakes's Avatar
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    Re: Ball Python enclosure build

    Cool project!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  11. #9
    BPnet Veteran gunkle's Avatar
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    Images: 2
    So I got around to starting the build today with the "help" my two daughters age 7 and 9. I took this opportunity to start teaching them some things about carpentry as handing me screws and holding the glue doesn't work anymore. This gave me the idea that some people here might not know a few good tips I have learned over the years. I learned a new one today also. Don't have Home Depot cut your plywood for you they are very accurate. Need to do some creative sanding and gluing but I can save it. Mind the mess its been near in the single digits lately so I cleared some room in the basement to start working.

    So here are some tips while I show off my Work In Progress:

    1: Don't have the saw blade to low. It should be set just below the thickness of the wood. This will help prevent chipping with plywood.




    2: Use a long flat edge and some clamps to make a guide for your saw so you make really straight accurate cuts.





    Here are some photos of the first one minus the front.





    I have the front door clamped and gluing right now so all in all it took me about 2.5 hours to get one cage built. Need to mount Plexiglas and hardware.
    1.0 Bearded Dragon
    0.1 Super Pastel Lesser Ball Python
    1.0 Pastel Bamboo Ball Python
    0.0.1 Halmahera Blue Tongue Skink
    0.0.2 Crested Gecko
    1.2.0 Guinea Pigs
    0.1 Dog
    0.2 Cats

  12. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to gunkle For This Useful Post:

    Dianne (02-02-2019),pretends2bnormal (02-02-2019)

  13. #10
    BPnet Veteran gunkle's Avatar
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    Images: 2

    Box 2 assembled

    Got the second box assembled today. took about 2 hours on my own. This time I did some corrective cuts to fix the less then stellar cuts from Home Depot. This one is far far more square but about 1/4" less deep. I will have a lot less sanding to do on this one. This is a very easy Beginner level carpentry project as long as the initial cuts are good ones.





    This image has the front door on top of the black plastic clamped and gluing for at least 12 hrs.





    First box with door siting on top



    With door held in place




    Still need to settle on hardware. Haven't decided how to latch and lock cage doors but I like that they are large it should help with access and cleaning. Also considering what to do about air vents. Think I may drill a series of holes and we can cover or uncover them as necessary. The vents I used for the Bearded Dragons cage is too big I feel. I am thinking along the lines of a series of holes in a circular pattern with a piece of wood screwed on one corner that we can swing around to cover more or less holes. Doing this on each side I feel should help in heat / humidity retention and give us some fine grain adjustments.

    Also I ordered:
    1 bottle - Prevent-A-Mite $19.99
    1 - 18" straight hemostat $15.99
    1.0 Bearded Dragon
    0.1 Super Pastel Lesser Ball Python
    1.0 Pastel Bamboo Ball Python
    0.0.1 Halmahera Blue Tongue Skink
    0.0.2 Crested Gecko
    1.2.0 Guinea Pigs
    0.1 Dog
    0.2 Cats

  14. The Following User Says Thank You to gunkle For This Useful Post:

    MissterDog (02-03-2019)

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