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Old 06-07-2019, 01:24 AM
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Default Exo Terra & Mist king, Light

I am about to purchase a Exo Terra 24x18x24. This will be my first Vivarium and Dart frog set up.

I am hesitating pulling the trigger because I don't understand what to do about the top.

NEHERP sells pieces of glass that go onto of the exo to seal it. Will I be able to run the Mist king through the pre built holes at the top in the back ?? if not Please advise me what's best.

With that said, Please recommend what light or lights I need to get. Money is not an issue, Quality, and best set up is what I am going for.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 06-07-2019, 01:52 AM
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Default Re: Exo Terra & Mist king, Light

You will still need to drill holes for the nozzles.

For the lights, it depends on what you are looking to grow. If you are planning on growing the pickiest plants with the highest light requirements then an EcoTech Radion or an Aqua Illumination Prime are your best bets. If you plan to grow the usual terrarium plants then go with Spectral Designs.

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Old 06-07-2019, 02:32 AM
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Are you asking whether you can run tubing for mist nozzles into the cage from the back? If not I recommend orientation of the nozzle going towards the rear of the tank.

If you’re not into making yourself your own top, and want to get some glass panels to put on top of the screen, you could use these things:

http://www.neherpetoculture.com/down...entopwedge.pdf
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Old 06-07-2019, 03:02 AM
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Default Re: Exo Terra & Mist king, Light

Sorry I was not very clear. I think I am a little mixed up on what to do.

It seems like having glass cut and then getting holes drilled into it will work best. I will attach the mist king through those.

I just need to figure out what exact light/lights I need. I want to end up with Thumbnails and Bromilaids, and a wide range of interesting plants. This is going to be a focal point in my home and I want it to look nice and neat.

Do I need any vents or should the glass be cut exact??

also, Do I have to drain the tank eventually or does the moisture evaporate over time?
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Old 06-07-2019, 07:57 AM
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You’ll have to empty accumulated water. Keep that in mind when you create the bottom of your tank. Either an easy way to insert tubing to siphon out water or drill a hole for drainage.

Look up your local glass and mirror shop and have them cut a 1/4” thick piece. The 20% ventilation is a good practice. 24”x14.4” piece of glass is 80%.

It’s pretty simple to make a screen. Got to home depot or wherever and get a screen kit.


The consensus is Spectral Designs for lighting needs.
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Old 06-07-2019, 01:49 PM
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Default Re: Exo Terra & Mist king, Light

You have options for the top, though the best long-term solution I have seen is to rip out the metal mesh that comes in the top of both of those. Eventually, the metal mesh will probably rust on you. I will tell you what I do then I can suggest a "lower-cost" way that might work for a while.

1 the good way ;-) What I do is to, as I say, physically tear out the metal mesh using a flathead screwdriver and whatever other tools are needed. it's not a particularly precision operation. I just try to pop the little plastic pieces that hold the mesh in with my screwdriver and improvise from there. My goal is to just remove the mesh and the little bit of plastic used to hold it in. I like to keep the plastic insert that fits nicely into the top of the tank. I then silicone or hot glue a piece of glass into the top. I stop the piece of glass about 3 inches before the back so that I can hot glue a piece of mesh over that part as a vent. Make sure that the width of the glass is measured so that you can either swing the little tabs into place to hold it in, or push the little tabs in to release the top (can't recall which brand uses which system - just plan the glass so that the little clippy things work even after the glass is in). I should also say that before attaching the glass, I like to drill the holes for the Mistking nozzles. It's not as tough as it looks! Look up Pumilo's excellent video tutorial. I have drilled probably a hundred holes and only broken one super-cheap piece of glass. This is how I like to do all of my tanks.

2 an alternative :-) Another thing you can do is much less work but the results will not be as effective or as permanent. You can use the top as it stands and use one or two of these doohickeys which are designed to work with default screen. This will handle the Mistking nozzle problem, but leaves you with - how do I manage my humidity with this big ol' metal screen on top of the tank. The "lower-cost" option would be to simply get one or two pieces of plastic wrap from the kitchen and put them over the majority of the metal mesh. I say majority because you want to leave some of the metal mesh uncovered to act as vents. How much of the top to leave uncovered by plastic wrap will be a work in progress, but it's all good because you can always just get more plastic wrap if you need to adjust :-) The stuff will cling to the mesh just ok at first, but you will want to spray it with a hand mister to get it used to sticking at first. Eventually, it will probably stick without spraying as much, but at first, you might need to spray AND weight it down with some little rocks or something. This spraying will hasten the rusting of the mesh, which is why I don't consider this to be a really long-term solution, but it will work for quite a while (hopefully until you figure out that the right way was the way to go all along ;-)

Forgot one more thing. Regardless of which way you choose above, you want your nozzles in the front, not the back. That way you can angle them at the back where you will likely have plants growing. I suggest using the top-back for the vents.

Best of luck,

Mark
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Old 06-10-2019, 05:32 PM
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Default Re: Exo Terra & Mist king, Light

I've got sort of a third option -

1) keep the existing screen top (they come in stainless now, the old ones rusted but the company seems to have fixed that)

2) get yourself some pieces of glass that just sit comfortably atop the screen (how much gap along the front back & sides of the glass is up to you - how much airflow do you want?)

3) drill the glass to accept MK nozzles, in the viv's front as already suggested here

(the reason for this front-placement is, you don't want to spray your door, you want to spray your background)

4) set the drilled glass atop the screen, and push a small Phillips screwdriver through the drilled hole, and through the screen

5) temporarily remove the glass, and ream out the new hole in your screen with the screwdriver shaft, until you can get the MK mister assembly through the screen (do that - push the mister up through the screen)

6) put the glass back atop the screen and protruding mister, and screw on its plastic hex-nut, hand-tight only

Works for me. Minimal effort. On those tanks I don't just leave wide open up top, I cut my glass so the front pieces are pretty full-dimension, and the back ones are only about half-depth. I like lots and lots of air flow. I don't keep frogs.

Good luck!
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Old 06-10-2019, 05:39 PM
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I am of the opinion that I want the least amount of light inhibiting surface like the screen and frame of the factory top screen.
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Old 06-10-2019, 11:27 PM
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Default Re: Exo Terra & Mist king, Light

Yeah, fair point - there is definitely some occlusion. I wonder what fraction of the total potentially-incident radiation is reflected & lost - 5%? 8%? 12%? I'm guessing it's somewhere in there - more than "trivial", and less than "problematic".

One unmentioned benefit of leaving the screen on, is you can get away with very thin plate glass - i.e., lightweight and cheap as hell. Weight is something I'm usually seeking to minimize. And so far for me anyway, thinner glass is easier to cut. Buy & cut it yourself, it's also pretty darn cheap.

cheers
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