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Old 12-16-2012, 01:21 PM
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Talking first build 18 cube exo terra

hey guys so after all the reading and research i have done i am starting to do my first build....may be a slow build at the moment but should take off when i get my vacation time from my job next week....hope you like and if anyone has any input please let me know

so i decided on building a 18x18x18 Exo Terra tank that i had sitting around in my attic, figured that was the priciest thing and if i already have it why not put it to use

so i started to see how easy or hard it is to work with the egg crate and make PVC pilings to support it. i saw how easy it is to work with and decided to go for it, i put in a little pond area that i will support from the bottom with more egg crate so that i can control how deep it is. i also inserted the wood that i had around that i baked the other day to see what i wanted to do for my background.

looking at my tank from the front with the doors facing me i noticed that if i make my false bottom only 3 inches off the floor the black divider is going to block my view of the frogs i want to put in, so i thought maybe if i turn the tank and make a full pane of glass the front and the doors the side i can get better view, and only utilize one door to access the tank.

so after placing the wood in I decided that i want to foam them all in place and then carve out a cave in the bottom where my half log is as a den, and also at the top right i want to carve out the foam under the wood to make a wrap around balcony, dont know what to call it haha, to create an open floor for the frogs and give them as much floor space as i can. its alot to understand with out seeing it but i understand it all in my head haha....

and for plant areas i was wondering if anyone has just cut into the foam with a hole saw to make planting areas?? or are the cups needed?? cause my plan was to foam in the wood then see where i wanted to make the plants go and cut out holes with a hole saw and then drill all the way down through the foam to the drainage area so they can drain


IMG_0209_zps97f7dca7.jpg photo by jimjam2135 | Photobucket



IMG_0211_zps84145eae.jpg photo by jimjam2135 | Photobucket




hope to have some more pictures up later today
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Old 12-16-2012, 01:58 PM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

To post photos directly into the body of your post, copy and paste the "IMG" code from the "Image Links" menu on the right side of the Photobucket page.


Like this:






It looks like you're off to a good start!
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Old 12-16-2012, 02:15 PM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

ahh thats how you do it lol, i didnt think they way i did it was right thank you
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Old 12-16-2012, 02:26 PM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

hey just fyi, that grape wood will decompose and mold fairly quickly in your viv.
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Old 12-16-2012, 04:55 PM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

Is that what kind of wood this is? Can you recommend a better suited wood??
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Old 12-16-2012, 05:03 PM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

Malyasian Drift Wood and Manzanita. You can order either for cheap, but I do sell Manzanita for cheap and have a few if you wanna order some.

Just don't use any woods that produce sap like Junipers, Pine, or etc as even if they have dried over time, once introduced to wet environments that sap will come back
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Old 12-16-2012, 05:19 PM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

What if I was to use the wood strictly structural and foamed completely over it, that was my plan and maybe just have a little showing?? Like a little of the tops as a root showing. Or is that just a bad idea?
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Old 12-17-2012, 12:32 AM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

Never cover it up completely. Wood is just to vital for frogs and plants. It adds beauty to a tank that is lost doing it any other way. Just get different wood and it will be far easier.
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Old 12-17-2012, 12:53 AM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

Ghost wood is my favorite viv wood.
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Old 12-17-2012, 01:01 AM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

I like it as long as its not part of the background. It just decomposes way to fast and after 6months break apart. Just my experience.
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:26 PM
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So I've been doing some work on it lately and hope everyone likes it, I think it's coming along awesome have to order my plants and substrate

ImageUploadedByTapatalk1356560623.089429.jpg
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:27 PM
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And also I tried the titebond lll to glue the coconut fiber down and then tried the GE silicone and the GE silicone is 1000x better!!
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:31 PM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

cool man better than my first tank. Lol.
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:33 PM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

Thanks for the update! My first tank was a premade from a fellow frogger, but an exo-terra 18" cube will be my first solo project. Once I get stuff cleaned up from the holidays I'm going to start in on it!
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:35 PM
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I also didn't realize how much that foam expands, I sprayed it and was like oh wow just how I want it, and went out the next night and was like holy crap that expanded like 4 times the size, haha now I know for next time
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:36 PM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

Should look into cork panel. Marylandcork. No need to deal with that damn foam ever again. lol
Reeffrog likes this.
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:38 PM
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I liked working with the foam felt like there were more options I could do
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Old 01-04-2013, 10:56 PM
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ImageUploadedByTapatalk1357343733.085899.jpg

Covering the foam after I cut and shaved it down
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Old 01-04-2013, 10:57 PM
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ImageUploadedByTapatalk1357343789.201538.jpg


All covered just waiting to vacuum the excess off and wait to patch up the bald spots
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Old 01-04-2013, 10:59 PM
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ImageUploadedByTapatalk1357343866.834997.jpg

All planted for now. Waiting to see what temp and humidity will be with how I have the top set up and also wondering about my little pond in the front, idk if its going to work have to add water and see what goes on, if not its going to just get covered up.
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Old 01-04-2013, 11:24 PM
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With my leaf litter
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Old 01-05-2013, 12:53 AM
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Great progress. Looks good. Will look even better w time.
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Old 01-05-2013, 12:56 AM
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What frogs u going get?
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Old 01-05-2013, 01:01 AM
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Default Re: first build 18 cube exo terra

im looking to buy 3-4 tincs for the set up, id like to get Patricias or Cobalts. and i wana grab 3-4 so a better chance of a male and female mixture, and when they mature either take out the extra females and leave a 2-1. have to see what happens tho and whats available out there. do you have any critiques for me?? thats what i really was looking for after posting the last pic, see how people liked it and maybe what they would do differently since its my first build, and im already looking to plan out a second build. ( its addictive)
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Old 01-05-2013, 01:14 AM
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I think it's a great build. I just did my first, well it's not done. Not nearly as nice as urs. Urs is aesthetically pleasing and u utilized the foam in a way that keeps the entire footprint of your tank usable to ur frogs. Make sure to give us some growth pics in a month or two.
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