Benedictopia... vivarium build

Discussion in 'Vivarium General' started by 41714049, Sep 30, 2013.

  1. highvoltagerob

    highvoltagerob Member

    Messages:
    80
    Likes Received:
    8
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Moncton, NB
    Wow, that thing is massive! I like the ducts built into the background, it looks alot better than a visible fan stuck on the side of the viv. How much cork did you end up using on it?
     
  2. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    I used about 50-60... most shapes did not match the style I was going for (expected when purchasing in bulk). After giving my uncle how many he needed for his plants, I only have a few large pieces left.
     
  3. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    OK, minor update. I have done some touch-up work on the air intakes so that they blend in a bit more and hopefully look more natural (maybe).

    [​IMG]

    I have also sealed off all ducting so that no critters can get in. This was done by using either a 1-1/2" to 1-1/4" adapter for the small ultrasonic humidifier vents, and very short pieces of the 4" pipe for the air intakes. The principal with both was the same. Tape off the sides and insides of the each piece and paint on some epoxy glue to the edges, then place the mesh over top (with painters tape covering the side of the mesh that is not laying on the plastic pipe), then placing a flat object (I used the rigid foam scraps) and finally a weight on top. Left this for a few hours to cure. The tape on the top keeps the glue from sticking to whatever you put on the top to weigh it down and usually will not stick to the adhesive. I then trimmed the extra mesh to fit nicely. I ended up with something like this (1-1/2" to 1-1/4" adapter shown, but same concept for larger pipe).

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    These smaller humidifier vents will not be finished as nicely. The plan is to create a little accent of river rock over this area so that the fog rolls out from between the stones and will hide the vents.
     
  4. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    Hello everyone… have a bit of an update. I have completed the following:

    1. Installed drilled glass top.

    2. Installed the top vent screen.

    3. Built the Light fixture.

    1 – The Glass Top

    The top of the tank is not installed; a tempered glass top drilled with 12 misting nozzle holes. Took 3 weeks to get in but is nicely done, as the holes are aligned to match the contours of the background.

    [​IMG]

    ***Note the night light… my $3 moon light… turns on when lights go off, white light, and perfect amount of light.

    2 – The Top Vent

    The top vent screen is also in the above picture shows the vent. It is a standard brown window screen components except for the screen. The screen is the same as I have used in all my other builds – tent screen mesh as it is very fine (from Fabricland).

    3 – The Light Fixture (Anyone have a PAR meter I could borrow?)

    The light fixtures (two of them) each have the following:

    1. 72 CREE XP-G2 LEDs (mix of cool, neutral, and warm white 1.5A MAX, running @ 1.0A).

    2. 6 Meanwell ELN -60-48P Drivers.

    3. RapidLED DDC-02 Controller.

    4. 36” HeastinkUSA 8.460" T-Slots Heatsink.

    5. Molex Connectors.

    6. Project Power Cords.

    7. Arctic Silver 5.

    8. Misc. Screws and parts.

    Here is a picture of the parts and light.

    Power supply and controller:
    [​IMG]

    Heatsinks (masked and marked for installation) and parts:
    [​IMG]

    LEDs:
    [​IMG]

    Nuts slid into T-Slots:
    [​IMG]

    Molex connectors and ATX connector (used to make sure all is modular if anything dies – all wire gauges match the power supply):
    [​IMG]

    Connectors and wires for solderless LEDs:
    [​IMG]

    Wires to show how the Meanwell supply will be wired to Molex connector:
    [​IMG]

    LEDs installed on heatsink:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Initial LED test (it was not night outside… just looks that way because the light was so bright):
    [​IMG]

    One light installed over tank:
    [​IMG]

    Both lights on:
    [​IMG]

    Some items that will be going into tank to make sure colours look good:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2014
    Corvidael, Corndrunk and mwringe like this.
  5. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    Here is a minor update. I am waiting for my front glass to come in. So while waiting I worked on getting the ultrasonic humidifier configured. The issue with regular room ultrasonic humidifiers has always been an issue with connecting them to standard tubing or plumbing parts. After some research and poking around store demos, I think I found a good model. Here is the information on how I converted it to connect to standard 1-1/2” ABS. The model of humidifier I chose was the Sunbeam SUL2610-CN. You can find this one at your local Walmart for $49.

    [​IMG]

    A thing to note with this model is that the outlet port is not really removable and you cannot rotate it – that is actually why I like this design. Removing the water reservoir on this unit is also what I like as it is not integrated with the outlet. This means you can fill the tank without ever needing to disconnect your outlet. After removing the water reservoir, you can also remove the rest of the assembly from the base by popping it up. The upper assembly is actually 2 pieces – the casing and the outlet assembly. You can disassemble the 2 pieces by simply removing 2 screws.

    [​IMG]

    Once you remove the screws, the inner outlet assembly slides out. Below is the housing and the outlet assembly taken apart.

    [​IMG]

    What I decided to do I measure all the parts and found that if I cut the outlet assembly just before it starts getting wider at the top the inside diameter of the assembly at that point fits a 2” ABS pipe (tight fit). So I did that and glues a pipe into it. After this I cut it to length and added a 2” to 1-1/2” ABS adapter as my intake to the tank uses 1-1/2” ABS. Everything seemed to fit. The only thing I didn’t like is the outlet now was loose in the assembly and a bit flimsy. To fix this I cut a 1/2” length of 2” ABS and split one side to make a “C” shape. I used this piece as a bushing between the thicker part of the 2” to 1-1/2” ABS adapter and the housing of the humidifier. After it was glues the thing is rock solid.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    After the glue dried I also applied caulking to the transition between the housing and the ABS. I did this for 2 reasons. 1 – I didn’t like the way the glue looked as it looked unfinished. 2 – I wanted to ensure a good seal to minimize evaporation or mist seeping out as this will be under the tank and want to ensure it stays as dry as possible.

    [​IMG]

    And now after the silicone sets, it is as simple as using standard pipe fittings. Another nice thing is that I bought a spare unit. If this one dies, I can pop this assembly off and pop it right on the new one.
     
  6. Epiphile

    Epiphile Contributing Member

    Messages:
    794
    Likes Received:
    231
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Toronto, ON
    I think it's great that you've taken so much care with something that no one else will likely ever see; any mods I've made to equipment like this have been ugly hacks indeed. Well done!
     
  7. mwringe

    mwringe Member

    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    74
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Location:
    Toronto
    The easiest ultrasonic humidifier to setup is probably this one: http://crane-canada.com/products/drop/blue-drop/

    All I had to do was pressure fit in some clear flexible tubing (I can't remember the size I used). Its really easy to fill: the white top part comes off and then you just take out the blue tank and refill it.

    You never have to disconnect the tube going into the tank. If for some reason you don't want to use it for the tank any more, you can just pull out the tube and its a normal humidifier again.

    Being using it for almost 2 years without any issues. Really easy to setup :)
     
    Ceilidh Time likes this.
  8. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    Yeah, I really wanted a unit that I didn't have to disconnect anything to fill the reservoir. But that is a good one as well.
     
  9. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    Another update while waiting for the front glass. I completed all the drain plumbing and it now drains to the floor drain. I also started with completing the interior as this will be easier before the rails are installed and less likely to get damages as well.

    First thing I did was fill the bottom of the tank with the larger Hydroton (Leca) clay balls – 100L (4 large bags). I sifted it in a plastic crate to remove the small pieces and dust as not to clog up a clean system. To rinse the fine dust I simply filled the tank with water up to the opening, washed them, then opened the drain.

    [​IMG]

    Next I applied the landscape fabric (3 layers to be safe as the wood may cause small tares in the top layer). The edges of the tank had a run of expandable foam run along all the edges before I put the landscape fabric, then the fabric was pressed into it on the edges. I do this in all my tanks as this prevents random stuff from getting past the fabric and also prevents any adventurous frogs from getting stuck somewhere below that layer. I usually use the black pond foam for this, but this will all be covered with substrate so didn’t really care here.

    [​IMG]

    Pressing it in a few times in the first hour creates really strong adhesion. After that I decided to place the large and rather heavy wood into the tank. 3 of the pieces are all in there… I tried to arrange them as naturally as possible so they all look like they come from the same piece of wood. Hopefully I managed to achieve this. The bottom of the tank will not get substrate until I get the front glass rails in as this will need some touch-ups on the background (want it filled in all the way to the rails).

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Hope it looks natural... the loose fabric looks a little crappy but it will get pressed down by the substrate.
     
    highvoltagerob likes this.
  10. Drew

    Drew Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,759
    Likes Received:
    774
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Burlington
    id recommend a putting in a layer that will break thw water wicking into the substrate.
     
  11. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    I have never added anything before... Hmnnn.
    What would you suggest in this case?
     
  12. Drew

    Drew Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,759
    Likes Received:
    774
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Burlington
    i use egg crate. other options is a stone that doesnt hold water
     
  13. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    Would the hydroton not suffice? Or am I not thinking straight?
     
  14. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    The layer is 8" thick.
     
  15. Drew

    Drew Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,759
    Likes Received:
    774
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Burlington
    might be me. could describe the subtrate layers from the glass up.
    hydroton wicks water
     
  16. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    The bottom is sloped to the drain with 5° slope. Then 8" hydroton (from what I understand hydroton only wicks up a few inches). Then 3 layers of landscape fabric. After this will be a loose light mix of mainly bark and coco husk chunk followed by leaves.

    I didn't want to go egg crate method due to the weight if the wood. I would be worried that it would crush the egg crate.
     
  17. Drew

    Drew Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,759
    Likes Received:
    774
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Burlington
    lol missed the 8 inch part
     
  18. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    So you think it will be good then?
     
  19. Drew

    Drew Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,759
    Likes Received:
    774
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Burlington
    yeah in my experience it wicks around 3-4 inch
     
  20. 41714049

    41714049 Contributing Member

    Messages:
    504
    Likes Received:
    170
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Prince Edward County, Ontario
    Slight fix.... Made a mistake. 4 bags of hydroton is 200L.
     

Social Sharing