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Thread: Turning a tank into a giant "Mr. Cool"

  1. #1
    swords's Avatar
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    While I was up at Home depot I saw something that I thought could help keep a terrariums temperature more stable, large sheets of 1/4" - 4" thick poly foam insulation (basically large sheets of styrofoam) It wouldn't be beautiful of course but would it work to attach the 1/2" thick poly foam to the sides and back and make like a big strofoam "Mr. Cool" cooler?
    Would this help keep the pumped in cool air in the enclosure longer? I know, many things sound good in theory so I'm wondering if any of you have tried this wacky idea?

    Also, I saw a min-refrigerator fo $59 which cools or heats (from 40* - 140*F) might this be a cooling motor to be frankensteined to a highland Nepenthes enclosure? or would it be fruitless to try with such a tiny thing (It can be run on a 12V DC in a car ciggerette lighter or plugged into a real outlet)?

    As always, any thoughts are appreciated! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif[/img]

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    Nepenthes Specialist nepenthes gracilis's Avatar
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    I am attempting to find a cheap mini fridge myself and try to detatch the door then replace with a sheet of plexiglass and hinge it with a handel like a clear door. Then at night place my Highland and Ultrahighland Neps in there, set the temp sprat 1 time with water and I will be all set. Gotta find a cheap one though, looking for like a $40.00 one. Yes, the styrafoam would keep in a lot of the cooled air all night.

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    swords's Avatar
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    Do you have a "thrifties" section in your local newspaper? Very often people sell their used deep freeze coolers at cheap prices. But I'd think even the largest deep freeze wouldn't last a growing highland nepenthes collection for long (not mine anyway)! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif[/img]
    That's why I was thinking of using the motor and cooling coils from it and attach it somehow to a highland enclosures back & sides, then (in my theory) you could use the same motor on most any size enclsoure as you aren't needing it to actually freeze stuff solid, just cool. But I wouldn't know where to begin on doing this procedure...!

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    Tony Paroubek's Avatar
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    I know Ron uses one of those little 40qt coleman coolers/warmers. They work with a peltier device. He replaced the flip up lid with a piece of plexiglass. Wired in a remote bulb thermostat on a timer to switch on at night. And simply placed the thing under a couple shoplights.

    It is fairly small but fairly economical. The system would have a hard time cooling a larger area or one with less insulation.

    A cooling system from a fridge/freezer would work but it would be a challenge to get the evaporator into the terrarium.
    Easier to use the unit as is and replace the door as Jeff has done. To cool a large uninsulated area I think the best method would be with air conditioning.
    T
    Is that a Nepenthes in your pocket or you just happy to see me?

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    swords's Avatar
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    I guess I'll stick with what I've got then, but I think I'll still get a sheet of that 4ft x 8ft insulation and see if that holds the cold better (so I can run the AC less-esp. in winter&#33[img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif[/img].

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