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Help me set up my exo-terra please !
#1
hey all, I bought an exo-terra 18x18x24 and I planned on using a false bottom with a waterfall. I have ordered some ghost wood logs, and branches and I also ordered Cypress Driftwood and Maylasian Driftwood. Now I don't know what the pieces will look like yet, but I wanted a waterfall into a pool, and possibly a drip system on some of the logs. I plan on lots of plants and a couple dart frogs.

Any suggestions or ideas is much appreciated - like a pump recommndation and possibly a design since I am not as talented as most of you Smile thanks again all. also, I'm using the background that comes with it, if its do-able, it seems well made.
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#2
im going to use the zoo med 501 turtle filter for my pump, and from what i understand the tube that goes in the tank for intake is just larger than air line tubing.

the back on my exp terra have 5 1/4" holes for tubes wires etc on both sides of the lid and a slider to cover up what you dont need. with the top being plastice i think i can drill it a tad or file it to fit. what do you guys think. please feel free to chime in here
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#3
i love the turtle filters...so easy to access. the only trick is to agitate them until all air is out of the line or else they are really noisy. the tubing is too large to fit the exo terra, but you should be able to cut the plastic around it to fit. the only other advice i have is that if you are putting small frogs into the exo-terra, make sure to block up the top of the BACK wall of the cage. you can't tell at a glance, but it is possible to get inside the upper back plastic fitting and a small frog could get trapped in there or escape depending on the configuration of your wiring coming out of the box. good luck, and have fun!
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#4
oh yeah,

and especially with a waterfall you might consider extra ventilation to avoid too much condensation on the front glass. when i had the glass cut to replace the screen top, i just left an inch or so open on top above the doors and covered it with "no see 'um" mesh from REI.
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#5
ya not to mention i opened one up at petsmart and the tube isnt long enough reach the bottom, so i may have to see if ace is the place for the solution maybe even use rubber hose the same size?

im also doing the glass bit as you described, if you can give some more detal on how you setup is maybe a picture would be mucho appreciated!!!!
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#6
also what do you use for lighting? i was going to use 2 flukers 20 inch strip light hoods with Exo Terra Repti-Glo 2.0 - 18" - 15 watt (Daylight Terrarium Lamp) x2.
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#7
sorry, i don't have a camera.

for tubing i would look for clear vinyl at a pet shop, or something food safe from the hardware store.

for the top, there is a plastic piece which holds the screen. i removed the screen from the top, and put the plastic piece back on the top of the exoterra. i then had two pieces of glass cut to cover where the screen was. i used two pieces so that later, if i want to, i can replace one of the panes with OP4 plastic. i had the pane of glass which is in the front cut about an inch short, then drilled it for a mister head. when i siliconed the panes in place, i left about an inch of room (the shorter pane) in the very front of the box, above the doors. i then siliconed no-see-um mesh over that one inch strip. it's a bit more ghetto than making a frame for the screen, but it doesn't bother me. i hope that helps.

for lighting, one of my exo-terras is 18 cubed, and it houses anthonyi. they like leafy plants, so everything in the box grows with low light. i just use a 13w compact fluorescent mini aqua light for it. it sits high enough above the top glass so that it doesn't heat the terrarium much. THAT IS THE BIG CHALLENGE WITH LIGHT: YOU HAVE TO KEEP YOUR TEMPS UNDER CONTROL. for the other exo-terra (18x18x24 with broms) i use a 27w compact fluorescent available at home depot. it's made for outdoor use by lights of america. it's cheaper than comparable special lights for plants. you have to wire a plug onto it, though, as it's made to wire directly into a box.

if you want to use your strip lights, i'd say just use a combo of warm and cool white bulbs. they are just as good for plants, and cheaper than the repti-glo. the difference is UV, which won't pass through your glass anyway. you'll have to place the lights a few inches above the glass to keep the hoods from heating the tank excessively. remember, too, to change out fluorescent bulbs every 6-12 months. they will look fine to your eye, but the plants know that the bulbs get significantly weaker over time.
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#8
hey mack well i decided to change it up a bit.
i ordered a Eheim 1048 Pump to run my waterfall/creek/lagoon or pond.
and i decided to goto home depot and get a Lights of America 65 watt Fluorex floodlight (Brown)
Wattage: 65 watts
Incandescent Equiv.: 400 watts
Dimensions: 10" x 15" x 10.25"
Light Output: 4,500 lumens
Color Temperature: 6,500 Kelvin, just one for now since its new and i have no plants. i am ordering some wood and subsrate from cindy at vivarium concepts. so construction soon to come, hope i do well for my first im sinking alot of money in this lol
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#9
i use the 65w in my plant propagation chamber (a.k.a. my second shower stall), but it's too bright for my taste for an exo-terra. see what you think, but i suspect it will be overkill....it definitely sounds like you are having fun, so keep up the good work!
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#10
here is my first viv, thanks cindy most of it including my frogs soon is from her.[Image: FH000002.jpg][/img]
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#11
mack Wrote:i use the 65w in my plant propagation chamber (a.k.a. my second shower stall), but it's too bright for my taste for an exo-terra. see what you think, but i suspect it will be overkill....it definitely sounds like you are having fun, so keep up the good work!


by the way, im using two of those 65w pc flood lights and i think its perfect
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#12
looks good!
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#13
Jason, that is a nice looking tank!
I think the leucs are going to love it.
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#14
I cant find anyone who will sell me some cypress wood. if anyone has some please pm me !
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