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Old 03-31-2019, 07:35 PM
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Default Air circulation help ?

I currently have 2 18x18x24 exo terra vivarium's setup. 1 currently houses 3 male and 1 female yellow banded leucs. The second tank is in its first week of cycling and will house three azureus, its half planted and has been seeded with isopods. The tanks are misted twice a day for 30sec in the AM and PM with a mistking setup. The tanks has a solid top with 3 - 2"dia grommet vents across the front.
I'm looking to add 1 - 50mm circulation fan to each to help with drying after mist and general air movement. I have gone through and found a bunch of great info on youtube and threads on here. I just wanted some opinions on my plan.
I'm going to mount the fan in the top rear corner on both tanks blowing air on a diagonal across the tank to the front doors/vents. The plan is to use 2" pvc elbows to mount the fan inside. I will dremel the fan case to fit inside with a screen to keep frogs out. Similar to the thread below.
https://www.dendroboard.com/forum/pa...-question.html

I plan to use the following 50mm fans that have a 19cfm and 39db at top RPM.
https://www.amazon.ca/2packs-Bearing...tronics&sr=1-7

I was wondering if I would need a speed controller with 19cfm in an 18x18x24 ? I also have the option to go with a 50mmx10mm fan that produces about 10cfm ?

If I need a speed controller this seems to be the cheapest option but do the fans just plug directly into this ? How is this and the fans powered ?
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B01...A2AWN71RVWFFRL

Ideally I would like to keep it simple and just wire each fan with a 12v power supply but was wondering what CFM is ideal and if fan control is needed. Let me know what additional parts are needed to run fans.

I also found these that seem to be a great plug and play option with built in speed controller with 3 settings. The have a have of 12cfm at only 18db. My fear is once I add screens to keep frogs out 12cfm will not be enough ?
https://www.amazon.ca/AC-Infinity-MU...s%2C162&sr=1-2

Last edited by camps23; 03-31-2019 at 07:41 PM.
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Old 03-31-2019, 08:24 PM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

I usually use a variable voltage power supply for little fans so I can simply feed lower voltage to slow the fan:

https://www.amazon.com/Belker-Univer...s%2C168&sr=8-3

Maybe there is some advantage to using a separate speed controller; I've never used one.
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Old 03-31-2019, 09:03 PM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

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I usually use a variable voltage power supply for little fans so I can simply feed lower voltage to slow the fan:

https://www.amazon.com/Belker-Univer...s%2C168&sr=8-3

Maybe there is some advantage to using a separate speed controller; I've never used one.
I saw those on amazon... how do wire it to the fan ?
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Old 03-31-2019, 10:54 PM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

Personally, I don't think fan CFM means much at all for a vivarium. Maybe I'm wrong and somebody has found a way to quantify this(?).

I prefer to just use subjective observation and position the fan so that the epiphytic plants have just a little bit of leaf movement with the breeze. You can also use evaporation of misting water from the glass as a gauge.

If you have any livestock in the tank, you should cover both sides of the fan with a fine screen. Whatever CFM rating the fan will mean even less with screens because they will slow the air flow a lot. For my setups I prefer to just use a screen cover rather than a speed controller. The screen also seems to disperse the flow to make a more gentle breeze.

Last edited by hydrophyte; 03-31-2019 at 11:02 PM. Reason: edit
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Old 03-31-2019, 11:26 PM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

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I saw those on amazon... how do wire it to the fan ?
Well, exactly like you would wire any power supply to the fan. If you have a fan with half of some sort of wiring harness installed, you could try to obtain the other half of the harness (difficult, unless you are an electronics person, which I'm not), or simply cut off the harness and splice the wires from the fan to the power supply.

I usually just twist the wires and put some electrical tape on for these low voltage applications. I've never damaged a fan by reversing polarity for a moment, so I just touch wires together until the fan runs in the appropriate direction, and then twist and tape.
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Old 04-01-2019, 04:02 AM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

Greetings,

My main advice is to not obstruct your fan unless you must. A PVC elbow will significantly reduce the airflow the fan produces because the fan will have to pull against the plastic rather than pulling in air to move.

In terms of control, I think a timer is just as useful as a voltage/speed control. Moreover, I would say a fan on a timer is more like natural breezes than a a fan constantly blowing at the same rate.

I found some very cheap wall outlet adaptors for my 50cm PC fans and then just connected them to a timer that cycles them on for ~40s and then off for ~60seconds. My viv is very large so I need the frequent breeze - you could likely get away with a shorter on-duration in a smaller viv.

No matter what the noise rating of a fan, it can be louder based on vibration/resonance. You should test for vibration when you're trying out your chosen mount. I ended up needing to re-mount my fan after I found the quiet (by itself) fan vibrated the wall of the viv.
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Old 04-01-2019, 03:08 PM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

The timer is a great idea -- nearly infinitely variable control.

A comment on loudness: a physically larger fan run at less than full speed will be quieter than a physically smaller fan run at full speed -- so the same CFM with less noise.
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Old 04-01-2019, 05:15 PM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

Quote:
a physically larger fan run at less than full speed will be quieter than a physically smaller fan run at full speed
Good point. It also generalizes across a variety of devices and applications, to wit: "mechanical things that aren't pushed to their limit tend to last longer, run cooler and quieter, and all in all disappoint or surprise you less often". Easy work is just easier than hard work.

In my husbandry I apply this rule of thumb a lot with air and water pumps, and with water filters. I also apply it more broadly, e.g. with redundant coats of waterproofing, over-building stands for heavy things, going up a size on casters, etc etc. There's safe, and there's sorry...

Quote:
I would say a fan on a timer is more like natural breezes than a a fan constantly blowing at the same rate
I like this. I don't currently use fans, having no present need of them, but if I ever have to I will use this idea.

cheers
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Old 04-01-2019, 09:10 PM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

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Originally Posted by kimcmich View Post
Greetings,

My main advice is to not obstruct your fan unless you must. A PVC elbow will significantly reduce the airflow the fan produces because the fan will have to pull against the plastic rather than pulling in air to move.

In terms of control, I think a timer is just as useful as a voltage/speed control. Moreover, I would say a fan on a timer is more like natural breezes than a a fan constantly blowing at the same rate.

I found some very cheap wall outlet adaptors for my 50cm PC fans and then just connected them to a timer that cycles them on for ~40s and then off for ~60seconds. My viv is very large so I need the frequent breeze - you could likely get away with a shorter on-duration in a smaller viv.

No matter what the noise rating of a fan, it can be louder based on vibration/resonance. You should test for vibration when you're trying out your chosen mount. I ended up needing to re-mount my fan after I found the quiet (by itself) fan vibrated the wall of the viv.
Maybe hiding the fan in the elbow isn't the best options then....
I went with the 40mm fan so its small enough it won't be a huge eye sore anyway. I don't plan on running my fans constant as this will surely dry out the viv quick. The fans I chose have 3 speed settings, so I will use this in conjunction with a timer to hopefully find a sweet spot. Can you recommend a decent timer that won't break the bank as I will need to buy two as my vivs are about 6ft apart ?
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Old 04-01-2019, 09:51 PM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

Greetings,

Here's the timer I use:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01G6O28NA...5-c9a67eccb398

It's a great timer with flexible time setting down to 1 second durations - I also use a similar model to replace the "seconds timer" that I have for my mistking. You could use a splitter and extension cord to run multiple fans off 1 timer.

If you don't really need to control durations less than 1 minute, then you can easily find a bunch of cheaper options.
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Old 04-02-2019, 02:01 AM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kimcmich View Post
Greetings,

My main advice is to not obstruct your fan unless you must. A PVC elbow will significantly reduce the airflow the fan produces because the fan will have to pull against the plastic rather than pulling in air to move.

In terms of control, I think a timer is just as useful as a voltage/speed control. Moreover, I would say a fan on a timer is more like natural breezes than a a fan constantly blowing at the same rate.

I found some very cheap wall outlet adaptors for my 50cm PC fans and then just connected them to a timer that cycles them on for ~40s and then off for ~60seconds. My viv is very large so I need the frequent breeze - you could likely get away with a shorter on-duration in a smaller viv.

No matter what the noise rating of a fan, it can be louder based on vibration/resonance. You should test for vibration when you're trying out your chosen mount. I ended up needing to re-mount my fan after I found the quiet (by itself) fan vibrated the wall of the viv.
Quote:
Originally Posted by kimcmich View Post
Greetings,

Here's the timer I use:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01G6O28NA...5-c9a67eccb398

It's a great timer with flexible time setting down to 1 second durations - I also use a similar model to replace the "seconds timer" that I have for my mistking. You could use a splitter and extension cord to run multiple fans off 1 timer.

If you don't really need to control durations less than 1 minute, then you can easily find a bunch of cheaper options.
Great. I see a two pack on Amazon.ca.
How do you mount your fans ? I want flexibility so I can adjust direction and angle..
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Old 04-02-2019, 06:10 AM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

Quote:
How do you mount your fans ?
Since the walls of the viv where these fans hang are made of plexiglass, I drilled a small hole for the power cords and then hung the fans with transparent, elastic filament tied through one of the corner screw holes. The filament, being elastic, dampens any vibration from the fan so they run more or less silently. My first mount was a rigid plexiglass structure that was completely unnecessary and it amplified the low hum of the fan too much.
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Old 04-02-2019, 08:55 PM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kimcmich View Post
Since the walls of the viv where these fans hang are made of plexiglass, I drilled a small hole for the power cords and then hung the fans with transparent, elastic filament tied through one of the corner screw holes. The filament, being elastic, dampens any vibration from the fan so they run more or less silently. My first mount was a rigid plexiglass structure that was completely unnecessary and it amplified the low hum of the fan too much.
Do you have any pictures ?
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Old 04-09-2019, 12:45 AM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

So here is what i ended up with....
I used a 40mm fan that had a built in speed controller with three settings.
I put the fan inside a 1.5 ABS coupler with screen on either end to keep the frogs out. I mounted the ABS to an old cell phone car mount I found at the thrift store. I run the fans on the 2nd speed setting and they come on for 30min and then off for 1hr and then repeat. This has been keeping the front glass clear and humidity between 75-82%. Fans were siliconed into coupler and are virtually dead silent inside the tanks.

Fans are mounted in the top right hand corner !





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Old 04-09-2019, 09:50 PM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

I use two of these in my 18x18x36

https://www.amazon.com/AC-Infinity-M...43462363&psc=1

They are on 24/7 - because there simply is no reason to turn them off.
The circulation they provide is beneficial and gentle enough that I don't need them off at any point. Also turning them off would result in water getting into the bearings etc. The fans should last longer leaving them on.

I also have them foamed into removable inserts in the background.

You can look in my thread here:

https://www.dendroboard.com/forum/pa...use-build.html
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Old 04-10-2019, 12:09 AM
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Default Re: Air circulation help ?

Oops, I mean 36x18x24
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