Well since I let the cat outta the bag on the spray foam thread about my upcoming project I will show you the new material I'm going to build my double stack Highland vivarium and greenhouse terrarium out of.
This is called AZEK PVC Trimboard, which is a waterproof "wood" made from PVC plastic. Like PVC pipes but in a handy board shape. I've just found out about it a while ago and they just started carrying it at my Home Depot - perfect timing! They actually sell it in several places around the store but be sure you get it by the regular pine lumber because it's 1/2 the price it is if you buy it over in the trim/moulding section. Those dirty bast...
Anyway, this is the label, note the front side of the board has a fake wood grain the other edges and backside are smooth:
Here's a shot of the two sizes I'll be using, 2.5" and 5.5". Currently being blessed by a greater daemon of Nurgle and the satan-in-a-mushroom-cloud sculpture shown on the cover of Onslaughts latest CD "killing peace".
The "Master" Plan (subject to change ):
Upper Display Vivarium: 4 ft L x 3 ft H x 2 ft W
Lower Greenhouse Terrarium: 4 ft L x 2 ft H x 2 ft W
The tanks will be built from trim board frames - the 5.5" boards will make up the lower part of the frame to hide the false bottom and soil level.
Waterproof fiberglass tub/shower surround panels will be used to cover the frames create the "walls" and a "floor".
The whole thing will be constructed basically like a plastic aquarium. All joins attached by aquarium silicone or Azek cement which I believe melts the plastic together permanently. I bought the Azek cement to play with and see if it really works. In any case the inner seams will be siliconed again after they bond the first time.
The bottoms will be lined with a puncture proof pond liner siliconed in place. They will both have 2" false bottoms installed so it can be drained periodically. On the frog board the guy who gave me the idea puts bulkheads in the bottom of his to drain the water with an external ball valve but I'm too scared to cut through the pond liner and frame. I'm already going to a lot of work to make it waterproof in the first place! So I'll just make a disguiseable internal siphon pipe - I'm used to that.
The fronts will be sliding glass panels, I'm waiting on my white sliding door track to arrive Even though i have an abundance of the black sliding track I want to use white for these. I want these tanks to look really clean and spiffy both inside and out.
The lids will be 1/2" plexiglass drilled for Mist King mister nozzles.
There will be an adjustable air input fan that runs from 0 - 216 CFM to supply cool humid winds to the two chambers day and night. I shouldn't really need to go to a mini-hurricane force winds of 216 for these rather small tanks but I want to see if it helps during the hottest days of summer.
A Greenhouse humidistat in the lower greenhouse terrarium will control the ultrasonic humidifier that will keep the air 80% RH in both tanks.
If this project turns out the way I'm hoping then I will also be doing a Lowland double stack display vivarium and greenhouse terrarium.
I am still up in the air about what lighting to use. The lamps will be mounted externally from the tank environment so low flow PC fans are definitely going to be used to expel their heat.
HO T5 looks good on paper but I need cool running lights for this setup and they supposedly get raging hot. How hot are they when separated from the plants via 1/2" plexi which seems to be a pretty good insulator - anyone know? I think Av8tor said the bulbs surface ran some 160*F -woo!
Lighting supplies onhand: I could use several giant 125W horticultural twisty CFLs which have a good depth reach and a 2 ft x 2 ft primary light spread from each lamp. I Also have two pairs of 100W reef keepers Power compacts, or two 240W (six lamp) setups of T12s. 400W HPS, not really wanting to use that cos it's so damned expensive to run the ballast.
More on this project will be posted periodically as my busy January work schedule allows...