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Thread: Terrarium/tank stand build log.

  1. #11

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    Second coat of stain has been applied, I'm about to go out and see what areas require touchup then its on to the poly coating.

    DSC_1116 by randallsimpson, on Flickr

    Here are the first set of drafts for the main tank setup. The weird blue mesh will actually be the white egg crating used for lighting but that's the best model I could find in Sketchup.

    40 Breeder Stand + Tank by randallsimpson, on Flickr

    There will be a 50W or so heater in the bottom 2-3" of water that remains in the tank, water will be flooded up to the top of the pots via the PVC pipe in the back and drained through the same pipe.

    Any suggestions are more than welcome, I'm still working on the design at this point but that should be enough to convey the basic concept.

    40 Breeder Stand + Tank Drain by randallsimpson, on Flickr

  2. #12
    Carnivorous plant enthusiast vraev's Avatar
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    Looking great. I suck at DIY projects...lol. But would be nice to make a custom stand, a custom tank with all the needed inlets and outlets like you are planning.

    My question though is..why are you pumping in water? I find that the regular misting/watering is more than enough to fill up the bottom of the tank. If anything...every couple of months or so, I have to do a complete cleanup and remove all the water to ensure the pots don't touch the water.

  3. #13

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    I'm trying to reduce my watering with the seedling and lot of what is going into this tank are prone to crown rot so misting is not really a good option without a lot of airflow. A flood/drain watering system seemed to fit the bill pretty nicely.

    I've always read about people using a water reservoir heated with an aquarium heater to raise the temperature inside the enclosure and wanted to give it a go. Since I am planning on moving some Nep seedlings in I figured now was as good a time as any to test it out.

    I've finished the stand and have moved it into its new home. I've added the PVC risers and the egg crating already. I might start adding plants tomorrow.

    DSC_1117 by randallsimpson, on Flickr

  4. #14

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    That's exactly how I set up lowland tanks. The heater gives you perfect temperature and humidity. It's almost too easy.

  5. #15

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    Added a 50W aquarium heater I had left over from years ago and set it around 80 degrees then went to adding in the plants.

    DSC_1120 by randallsimpson, on Flickr

    If I can't get the humidity closer to the 70ish range I'll have to add a fan, its too early to tell but its looking like I'll need one . So far the temps are just about perfect.

    DSC_1121 by randallsimpson, on Flickr

    Tomorrow is watering day so I'll see how the flood/drain part works out. I just finished up cementing the piping together.

    DSC_1119 by randallsimpson, on Flickr

    Right now the new tenants are:

    Paph. barbigerum seedlings
    Phrag. caudatum seedlings
    Sarcochilus ceciliae seedlings
    Nep seeds to fill in the extra space and take advantage of the higher temps.

    I'll be using a few extra T5 lights until I get around to ordering the LEDs.

  6. #16

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    The two vertical pieces are where you attach lights? Will that light the back more than the front? The heater is lying flat and submerged, you will water by flooding - raising the water level to to top of the pots and dropping later. How does the piping for that work in both directions? Do you have a pump that can switch directions? Very nice setup!

  7. #17

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    I will be attaching some hanging plant basket brackets to the two vertical pieces that I will be hanging the lights from, I have not went out and found them yet. As long as I get the proper brackets then light will be even over the tank.

    The heater is flat on the bottom and submerged, and that is how I hope the flooding will work. From my experiences refilling our 120g fish tank with a standard pump once you unplug the pump it automatically creates a syphon and starts draining. So the plan is to pump the water into the tank from a holding bucket, unplug the pump, close the on/off value, wait about an hour or so for the medium to saturate then open the value. If all goes to plan I will have a syphon once I open the value back into the holding tank. The intake/outtake pipe will be at the level I want to keep the water at so it will not overdrain.

  8. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by RSS View Post
    Materials listing:

    4 @ 2 X 4 X 10 - $4.22 each = $16.88 (We went with the better looking wood as we did not know if we were going to use a light or dark stain, cheaper options are available)
    2 @ 2 X 6 X 8 - $4.76 each = $9.52 (We went with the better looking wood as we did not know if we were going to use a light or dark stain, cheaper options are available)
    2 @ #10 4" Deck Screws - $9.37 each = $18.74 (Cheaper options available)
    1 @ #9 2 1/2" Deck Screws - $7.99 (Cheaper options available)
    1 @ 15 Pack Orbital Sanding Paper = $7.98 (Cheaper options available)
    1 @ Quart Stain = $9.49
    1 @ 10 Pack Paint Rags $3.97 (Could use old T-Shirts, I've used all mine up by now)
    3 @ 1 1/2" Brush - $1.79 each = $5.37 (Cheaper options available, could just use the cloths + 1 brush for the Polyurethane)
    1 @ 1/2 Pint Polyurethane $6.47

    So far $77.04 + A lot of hours. You could probably get the cheaper options for around $35-40.
    Tank Materials

    40G = $40
    Glass top = $22.99 (Could have glass cut for less)
    50W heater with adjustable temp = $17.99 (reused old heater)
    10 ft 2" PVC Pipe = $8.44 (reused old pieces)
    Lighting Egg Crating = $12.49 (reused old pieces)
    Silicone = $5.98 (used current tube)
    8' X 4' X 3/4" Refective Foam board = $10.33
    PVC fitting for flood/drain pipe = $8.03

    Add another $126.25 + A lot less hours than the stand, ALOT less. If you went the cheapest route you could probably do this part for around $75-80.

  9. #19
    Odysseus's Avatar
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    This thread was pointed to in a discussion of yours on LEDs, do you have a better picture of the light you are using for this tank? and from the pic above it appears the front row of plants are getting much less light than the middle row directly below the light fixture. Do you find that to be true or even a problem?

    I also should add that I LOVE that you are being so thorough in recording the costs and documenting the process with pictures. It helps so much to see this and get the ideas flowing on my end. Thanks a million for doing this!
    Odysseus
    Wife and I in the Netherlands. Sure miss living out there.

    My growlist
    A list of beginner CPs

  10. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Odysseus View Post
    This thread was pointed to in a discussion of yours on LEDs, do you have a better picture of the light you are using for this tank? and from the pic above it appears the front row of plants are getting much less light than the middle row directly below the light fixture. Do you find that to be true or even a problem?

    I also should add that I LOVE that you are being so thorough in recording the costs and documenting the process with pictures. It helps so much to see this and get the ideas flowing on my end. Thanks a million for doing this!
    The lights on it right now are just temporary, they are 2 T5 strip lights I had left over. When I get everything setup correctly there should be more even lighting.

    I've always found pricing useful on other builds logs I've seen around so I figured it would be helpful, glad it is useful to someone.

    I ended up losing about a week due to a mini relapse. Everything for the lighting has been sitting on our table for over a week now taunting me, I was finally able to get some of the work done this morning. I'm still not able to attach the lenses to the LEDs, hopefully I will be able to tomorrow.

    We added the shelf that the LED bars will be hanging from last week.

    DSC_0093 by randallsimpson, on Flickr

    DSC_0094 by randallsimpson, on Flickr

    Here is the progess on the LEDs from this morning.

    DSC_0091 by randallsimpson, on Flickr

    DSC_0092 by randallsimpson, on Flickr

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