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  1. #1
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    planning a future reptile enclosure

    As the title goes I am planning on making some new homes for my herps in the coming year. Right now I have 1 BP, 2 leo geckos, and plan on getting one colubrid. As such I figure I have two possible paths, the first is making a rack the other is making a custom enclosure that looks more like furniture.

    My concern about the more "furniture" style, as in all wood construction, hinged and see through front etc, is heating. I want to avoid heat lamps because they take up a lot more space, produce a lot of waste heat and subsequently use a lot more energy. So what I am stuck with is how to provide heat from a UTH. I could of course go with the radiant heat panels but at their price vs FW I don't see that as a reasonable option. For the heat source I had some ideas related to using floor tiles in the enclosure to affix the FW to, to give the warmth. The question that comes up with that is cleaning of course, unless someone has had luck with warming an enclosure through wood or some other readily available material.

    The other option is to make a rack. I'd like to keep it right around 4' (48") tall. For tubs for the snakes I am planning on using CB110 at 19 7/8"W x 39"L x 6 1/4"H (referencing tubs by volume seems silly to me...) and not sure what to use for the leos (as I can't find a dimension that is both half of one dimension of CB110 and equal in another) so it is clean. With that height I have room for a little future expansion if I so choose. Not a lot but some. Regardless I am wondering about the heating. My plan is to either use one 11" strip of FW or two 3" or 4" strips per shelf. I like the idea of using two strips to heat the warm side because if one fails there is a redundancy. Any opinions?

    To protect against failure I am going to put a fuse on each FW individually (as I mentioned in a different sticky thread).

    Regarding material, I figure there are two options. One being plywood and the other being melamine coated particle board. The melamine stuff weighs a ton so I'm not a fan. I'm also not worried about having the stuff pre-cut as I can take care of that myself at home. What would be awesome if there was that PVC stuff available. Can one get that at a home supply mega-store? Or is one stuck with the above?

    Basically the necessity is I don't want a room full of fish tanks...

  2. #2
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    Re: planning a future reptile enclosure

    perhaps if I went with the nicer enclosures I could just use plastic for the bottoms... but don't know of a good way to do that either. I have heard about expanded PVC but not sure where to buy some.

    Any other ideas/options?

  3. #3
    BPnet Veteran Argentra's Avatar
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    Re: planning a future reptile enclosure

    Well, I've built my own rack already (and plan on making a second like it), and have the plans and supplies to make a 'bookshelf' style cage system for my corns. I spent a lot of time looking into flooring options, especially since the cages are all connected (meaning the floor of one is the ceiling of another) and I'll be using ZooMed UTHs for the heat and they need circulation. I finally devised a plan where tiles will be set on risers and then silicone will be used to seal the edges.
    I was going to use thick glass instead of tile, but it proved too expensive.

    If you're using flexwatt, tho, and especially if the cages are stacked but separate units, you can just lay vinyl flooring over the strip. Makes it a lot easier.

    The PVC sheeting is available, but very expensive from what I've heard.
    **Adriana - White 'N Nerdy!**

    1.0 BP 'SunSpot', 0.1 Corn 'Freya', 1.0 IJ BTS 'Topaz', 1.0 ND bunny 'Licorice'




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