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Exo Terra Screen Lid Modification
#1
Hello Froggers

Wanted to post a solution (one of many) on how to mod the Exo Terra/ZooMed style screen lid. I purchased a piece of Lexan for $20 at Lowes. The size of Lexan you need will vary depending on the viv size - of course. I start by taking a nail or pick and pry out the rubber grommet that holds in the screen. I used pliers to pull it out once it was started. It takes some elbow grease, but it will give. Once you have this stripped. Then use needle nose pliers to break loose the aluminum screening. The screen might have some glue spots, but for the most part will pop out if your persistent. I then used a marker to indicate my cutting lines. Note: the Lexan will be mounted from the underside of the lid. You will cut 2x pieces for the 18x18. If you have the smaller 12x12 just cut out the center brace so you will have close to square cut piece of Lexan. Cutting the Lexan can be done w a Dremmel. Have someone help you hold the Lexan while you cut. It just needs a deep score and you can snap the break nice and clean. The score tool at Lowes is junk and does not work. Lexan is very difficult to cut wout the Dremmel. After the pieces are cut, make sure they fit, but not too snug, as you want the silicon to act as the bond btw the Lexan and plastic inset edge. If you over use the silicon (like me), it will puddle up and not look as pretty. When you glue it, make sure you have a flat surface to lay the lid and set some med weight objects to ensure a good even seal on the lexan. Let it sit overnight and cure for 24 hours. I would wait an additional 3-5 days for it to cure before using it on viv w frogs. You can drill some small holes for vents (make sure a FF can't crawl through it) or just leave it as is.

I included a pic of the finished product. I plan to do this again and will take more step by step pics for future reference.
Scott - North Dallas
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#2
Looks really nice!

Sent from my Desire HD using Tapatalk
Thanks, TJ
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#3
As promised, here are some additional instructional images to help illustrate the steps to modify the Exo Terra/ZooMed screen lid.

Please note that you could easily substitute glass in lieu of Lexan.
Scott - North Dallas
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#4
Idea
Very nice!
Did the screen come out very easy?
Cheers
Todd
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#5
My friend actually took the exo lids, digitized them, and cnc cut new lids out of lexan, replacing the entire exo lid. They fit perfectly. He also added adjustable vent openings. I have about a dozen of them, but have only used them on one tank thus far.
For some reason the tank I'm using them on seems to be growing in way better than the ones I've used just glass on? Way less door slime too, none actually. The tank seems brighter too. I've wondered if the glass I've been getting from the local hardware store filters the light differently? Pretty ignorant on that stuff....
Derek
1.5 kids and a bunch of frogs
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#6
I'm not a fan of "hard modifications" , but if I had to do the screen mod...THIS is the way. Excellent DIY / Mod thread Scotty !
https://www.facebook.com/dartden/

https://twitter.com/DartDen


"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana".
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#7
DKOOISTRA Wrote:My friend actually took the exo lids, digitized them, and cnc cut new lids out of lexan, replacing the entire exo lid. They fit perfectly. He also added adjustable vent openings. I have about a dozen of them, but have only used them on one tank thus far.
For some reason the tank I'm using them on seems to be growing in way better than the ones I've used just glass on? Way less door slime too, none actually. The tank seems brighter too. I've wondered if the glass I've been getting from the local hardware store filters the light differently? Pretty ignorant on that stuff....
Derek
Are these available for purchase? Then I don't have to mess with the factory top, and save it.

Sent from my Desire HD using Tapatalk
Thanks, TJ
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#8
He attempted to set something up with one of the sponsors, but the sponsor wanted a massive quantity to carry it, to the point where he didnt want to mess with it. over the next day or 2 ill try and take a picture or 2. I'm not much of a camera guy. ill get a count on how many i have and what sizes as i think i bought more than i need, if i have an extra or 2 ill let you know. I have up to an exo 24 wide. Ill see too if hes going to make a batch any time soon. 3 of us did it all at 1 time and he did a little production run the last time. They are sweet.
Derek
1.5 kids and a bunch of frogs
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#9
Awesome! I am curious how much, I have a few 12x12s and a 18x18 I might want to do. Does he get into the 36x18x24 sizes at all? I use the glass on top of screen method right now, but am interested in the better growth you were speaking of with these tops.

Sent from my Desire HD using Tapatalk
Thanks, TJ
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#10
Venutus1 Wrote:Idea
Very nice!
Did the screen come out very easy?
Cheers
Todd


HAHAA you mean without drawing blood from your fingers....

I got the screen out in less than 60 seconds
Scott - North Dallas
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#11
Here are some pics of lid mods done to 12x12x18 units

Notice I ran a bead of silicon along the top side of the frame to help clean up the appearance and strengthen the bond.
Scott - North Dallas
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#12
It has come to my attention that exo terra lids will rust over time, but zoomed will not. Therefore, a cheaper alternative for zoomed owners may be a simple cut glass from hardware store. A fellow frogger, Brad Lucas, has done this with his vivs and its works great. I setup some new vivs (zoomed) using the same setup. The hairline gap btw the plastic lid edge and glass is enough to allow circulation, but wout quick loss of humidity. I will get some pics posted to help visualize.
Scott - North Dallas
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#13
Ref Rusty Screen metal.....

Hard to predict just what brand or what year will, or won't rust. Suffice it to say....it's all variable.

enclosures-setup-and-construction-f23/rust-on-screen-top-t5297.html
https://www.facebook.com/dartden/

https://twitter.com/DartDen


"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana".
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#14
The zoo meds I have bought over the last year have not rusted, the exos have rusted badly...
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#15
Still no rust on my six Zoo Meds!
brad
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#16
I believe that the zoo meds are stainless steel screens and the exos are not, there are also different grades of stainless steel!

jerry
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