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Thread: Mega-terrarium

  1. #1
    blokeman's Avatar
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    Mega-terrarium

    Now that I have your attention I am going to be going full out, and making a setup that will put my current terras to shame. If you've seen Titom's or Labine's setup, I'd like it to look a lot like that, basic, yet effective.

    So I hope to make a very basic frame out of 2x4's, I have some Red Oak left over from my dad's deck renovations, the dimensions would be 6 feet wide, 3 feet deep and 3 feet tall(maybe taller). The back wall will be mirror, as well as the sides; I found a couple in garage sales for real cheap. Speaking of walls, they will be plastic sheeting, and maybe I will try gluing some Mylar or other reflective material to the plastic walls. Lighting will be four F48T8’s (two cool white, two warm white) and a F36T5HO. I will remove the ballasts from the housings and place them on the outside of the grow area, as to try to keep the temps down. But just in case, I have made in the past, some pc fans wired in parallel, which can serve as input-output vents. I have to find a way to make it so that if any condensation runs down the walls, it would not accumulate on the floor, my landlord wouldn't be too happy...
    That's where I am stumped... What can I possibly use as a bottom that will hold water, yet have the dimensions I am looking for?? I was considering pond liner with a small frame within the frame, but that would cost $, and I am trying to make this terra as low cost as possible. Maybe I could use a couple busboy tubs... Rockwool seems to be an ideal medium to keep the humidity up, so the tubs will have a base of that.

    Anyways, that's the idea behind my brainstorming, now that I have the room for it... long story short: Let's just say I won't be storing any of my fiancées stuff anymore.

    If anyone has ANY suggestions, anything at all, I am open to criticism/input/opinions...

    I shall post pics of the steps along the way, from start to finish hopefully, and a one year later after that

    And BTW, this will be a NEPENTHES setup, Jack's got me on the bandwagon with a Sanguinea, and now rug's Raff... I got bit and it is spreading fast

    I'd be very grateful if any of you can help
    Grow list...
    http://terraforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=114907

    “Experience: that most brutal of teachers. But you learn, my God do you learn.” C.S. Lewis

  2. #2
    Grey Moss's Avatar
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    Sounds good, but I'd forget the rockwool because people report that its bad for your health.

  3. #3
    Oops Chomp's Avatar
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    Oh, I can't wait to see pics of this...
    They're watching us. o.0

  4. #4
    Not Growing Up! GrowinOld's Avatar
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    Hi,
    Your idea using the frame bottom with pond liner is the way to go, BUT instead of pond liner,
    you can simply use some cheap black/clear plastic they sell 10'x25' at the hardware store
    for a few bucks. (NOT the real thin painters plastic, but the bit heaftier kind.)

    I have a terrarium that is about 20 years old, and replaced the plastic once when I resized the whole thing. The KEY is to use a few layers of plastic, and use care when working near it to not puncture it. That way if one layer does get punctured, the other layers will still function. (I have about 3 or 4 layers lining the bottom, and it works perfect!)
    Well, thats my suggestion, for what its worth!
    Good Luck!
    Paul
    Experience is the best teacher. At least it used to be.
    But then, common sense isn't so common anymore, is it.


    http://www.terraforums.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=113866

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    blokeman's Avatar
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    much appreciated, you have contributed to this, i'll personally keep you posted
    Grow list...
    http://terraforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=114907

    “Experience: that most brutal of teachers. But you learn, my God do you learn.” C.S. Lewis

  6. #6

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    For the flooring I'd check into plexi glass of plastic sheeting. I'm not sure how much such a large piece would run for though but with some hot glue along the edges that would keep the water from getting all over your floor. Just a thought, the prices may put this idea to a halt though. Pictures when you get started

  7. #7
    Tony Paroubek's Avatar
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    Can you describe your lighting plan a bit better? You mention 3' or higher which is quite tall but only 4 4'T8 tubes and some (or is one tube??) 3' T5 high output. But you are also going 6' wide? Sounds like you need more lighting to me.

    I think you should be considering something like a couple of those 200-250w CFL fixtures...
    Is that a Nepenthes in your pocket or you just happy to see me?

  8. #8
    blokeman's Avatar
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    tony: as for lighting, I was going to put two double fluo 4 footers (4 tubes total), and a T5 3 footer in the middle. That could be a good idea to throw in a couple curly fluo's too. As for 6 feet long, I think it will be reduced to 4.5 feet, and more like 3 feet tall max, I intend to have the tops of the pots at 18 inches from the lights more or less.

    Yann: I really trust Growin Old's setup, I can't afford a leak if the glue were to let go due to the weight of the water on the sides. Plastic sheeting will take the shape of it's frame, so I am certain my frame will be able to contain it.

    here's my idea for lighting with your input added
    Grow list...
    http://terraforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=114907

    “Experience: that most brutal of teachers. But you learn, my God do you learn.” C.S. Lewis

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