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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK.. so here's my updated construction journal... it's pretty much complete.. now just needs to wait a month for the herp show to come to town and i'll probably be getting 2-3 d. azureus.

please, any comments/suggestions are welcome.. i decided to start a new topic so those that saw the previous post didn't have to load all those images. but if you haven't seen the previous post, it's here:
http://www.dendroboard.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=5960

here is the continuation:



i took the glass top and drilled 3 holes: two in the front for the mist nozzles, and one in the far back for the wire from the pump. I got Marty's Mist King setup, and it works great... a real fine mist and was a breeze to install. And yes, i am that lazy that i need a mist system for one tank :). it's just so easy to maintain. I got a timer and programmed it to mist for 1 minute 3 times a day.


this is the bulkhead, reservoir and Mist King pump... all you have to do is get a cheap bucket, drill a hole, and screw the bulkhead on. piece of cake... doesn't seem to leak at all either.


put in another piece of ghost wood to the right (not siliconed in). planted the Selaginella Plana and lemon button fern i already had... waited for moss and more plants to arrive. The substrate i used was coco bedding, mixed with water and some Dyna-Grow fertilizer i got from black jungle. Given where i bought it from, i assumer he fertilizer is safe for frogs.


Got a shipment in from T & C terrarium.. For bromelaids, i chose a fireball bromelaid and a little Neoregelia lilliputiana X fireball. Drilled some holes in the driftwood and plugged them in. Next I put in the resurrection fern which serves as a natural hygrometer, but isn't too visible here (behind the left piece of wood). Followed by covering the floor of the tank with pillow moss. and it's pretty much done! here are some more pics of the tank:





i plan on putting in a few more plants... probably some bladderwort, as their flowers look beautiful. As well as a miniature orchid (Sophronitis cernua)... any other suggestions? i'll post pics of it when i have all the plants in...

i gotta say this was so much fun to build and setup...

-sam
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Looks Awesome! What kind of substrate and moss did u use? Is there any discolorization from the drip wall area? Will plants be able to grip on to the back ground?

Thanks,
Tom
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
thanks,

a slight discoloration so far on the drip wall... i hope it'll discolor more, as right now it's hard to tell from the pics where the water runs down, but it runs down pretty much everywhere.. but there are three concentrated areas... one of which leads to a tiny pool of water in the back that's not shown in the pics..

i used LECA topped with coco bedding.... i'm not sure whether anything'll grab onto the wall... i'm hoping some of the java moss i have on the rock will climb, but i guess we'll see.

the ground cover moss is primarily pillow moss

-sam
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
What kind of lighting are you running on this setup? Where did you get your substrate? I am doing the same background right now, but I am using hot glue to stick the foam together. This is by far one of the nicer setups I have seen.

-Glenn
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
thanks for the comments.... the lighting i am using is one of those standard strip lights that all glass makes for fish tanks... but it's the twin-fluorescent tube version. i'm using 2 life-glow bulbs (15W, 6700 K).

i'm planning on putting in 2-3 d. azureus in this tank in a month or so...

since those pics i planted some Utricularia lividia (bladderwort) and have attached a miniature orchid to the wood with some twine. the twin is then covered with some moss to conceal it until the orchid latches on.

-sam
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Sam that viv is looking very nice specially the back wall, I really like the shape you have given to it. The moss in the viv looks great too. Is that live moss? also i noticed you have the mistking how long did it take to be delivered to you? I just ordered mine and it does not say anything on the estimated delivery time.


Cheers


Xavier
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
xavier,

thanks, the moss is live. it's tropical pillow moss i got from t & c.

the mistking setup came fairly quickly. i think i got it within a week or so from ordering. i believe you'll get an email from marty with a (UPS?) tracking #.

-sam
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Marine Epoxy, and LECA

Where did you get these from? I went to home depot for marine epoxy and could only find bondo brand, and were did you get the leca from?

Thanks,
-Glenn
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
yeah i don't think home depot or lowes carry west system epoxy. you're best off getting the resin and hardener online. i got mine from go2marine.com. you're probably best off getting the pumps for the epoxy bottles as well as it's pretty crucial that the proportions are right when you mix them together.

the LECA i just got online from black jungle.

-sam
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hey great tank! I PMed you with some questions but have two more (sorry!). What type of acrylic paint did you use and then, do you think polystyrene could work for the background or is it a must to use the foamboard? Thanks again.
 
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
hey,

i just PM'd you. but in case anyone else is wondering:

- epoxy is a type of "glue" that uses a 2-part chemical process to form it's bond. so it usually comes in two containers or in 2 tubes, and you need to combine them to form a usable, VERY STRONG adhesive. for the terrarium, i would never use typical epoxy, as most of them will break down over time in water and leak harmful chemicals. rather, i use the west system brand which is water resistant... It comes in 2 parts: Resin & Hardener. You pump out a little of both and when they combine they start to harden, and you apply it before it becomes totally hard (you have typically 5-10 minutes to work with it before it starts getting goopy but hard). The resin and hardener come in separate containers, and you buy them separately. check out west system's web site (google for it).

Regarding the exothermic reaction melting the foam, that's only a concern when you mix too much epoxy at a time. if you mix too much of it in a container, the exothermic reaction gets very hot b/c there's not enough surface area for the heat to dissipate. so you can avoid this by just squirting out and applying a little at a time. It may be warm and melt a little but you shouldn't need to worry about it turning the whole project into sludge.

- the paint i used was just some artstore acrylic.. nothing special since it's just going to be covered with the clear coating of epoxy.

- i recommend the thick sheets of pink foam over the white stuff just b/c the grain is much smaller, thus when you're trying to mold and carve the styrofoam, pink styrofoam is much easier to carve and control... in fact, i found out after working on this terrarium that you can buy VERY thick blocks of pink styrofoam at some art stores... if i had to do it al over again i'd work with that stuff...

-sam
 

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the best place i found the LECA or HYDRATON is at a hydropontics store it is at least half the price that I have found online.


What type of driftwood is that cypress. Anyone know where to get quality cypress drift wood other than on ebay?
 
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