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My first build, 75g of froggy goodness, I hope.

I am actually near the end of the build but thought I would go ahead and post the photos of the process anyways as I just discovered this board. Anyways, here it is...

The tank housed a couple bichirs and some other FW fish. After finding a new home for them came the tedious task of draining the tank and scrubbing algae.

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Tank clean I started on the frame work for the Great Stuff water feature.

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First can of GS.

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Second can and a test fit. Needs some sculpting.

[Image: FirstVivarium2.jpg]

After some carving and before covering with silicon. I don't have pictures of that process but I simply covered it in brown silicon and adhered a brown sand and pebble mixture to the still wet silicon.

[Image: WaterFeature.jpg]

Another test fit and some closeups so you can see the texture of the sand/pebble covering.

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Here is a full tank shot before planting.

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A close up of the rock feature on the right side, also GS covered with the same sand mix.

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Here are some shots of the plants that are in the tank so far. I have a couple more ordered, should be in this week.

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And the final FTS. Still needs more planting and some more driftwood, but it is coming along pretty well.

[Image: FullTank-2.jpg]

I used a false bottom using egg crate and window screen and underneath is about 2 inches of water for the waterfall. I am using a Mini-Jet 404 water pump for the flow duties. I left a large opening behind the waterfall for easy access for pump maintenance. For the substrate I used a mix of Eco Earth (coco fiber), fir & sphagnum peat moss mix, and orchid bark. Leaf litter is oak leaves from my yard that have been boiled and dried in the sun. I have my FF cultures and Springtail cultures in the mail so I can have them working before the frogs arrive. Frogs will be most likely a group of 5 leucs. So I still have some finishing touches to do but I think I am about 90% done. Please feel free to comment, good or bad.

I also have coco panels coming so the back will be planted as well soon.

Darn...I was just about to reply and post that I like the way you left the back wall open. I debated whether or not to have a background on my 37g that I am doing. I was going to have Lamasi in the tank but changed my mind when I saw just how tiny they are. I guess I am just more into the larger frogs so I will house 2 cobalts in there. I was talked into doing a background so the cobalts can have something to climb up on.

I debated that, leaving the back open. I still might. I can always hang on to the panels for another build. I do like the way it looks but it seems empty so I might give it some time to see how everything fills in before deciding. If I go with the leucs, at least they are more terrestrial so the open back will work. I am still not 100% on them though so if I end up choosing a frog that is more of I climber I will probably end up adding the back anyways.

I had a bit of a hiccup with the viv. I used foam to hold up the egg crate and siliconed it to stay in place. Not sure if I did not allow enough time to cure but after adding about 5 gallons of water to get the level high enough for the water feature I guess the silicon got really nasty and slimy and fouled the water. I was also having leaking problems with the water feature also due to silicon not curing fully. So I tore the entire tank down, clean it up and used tried and true pvc sections to hold up the egg crate. I also will be using a reservoir to hold the pump and water rather than flooding the entire tank underneath the false bottom. I removed the water feature as well and did some work on it to fix the leaks so hopefully all will be better soon.

I also received my FF culture kit from Josh's Frogs. Great stuff. I ordered the kit with two cultures and went ahead and made my first two additional cultures and I am very pleased at how easy it was. I have about 15 flies escape but no biggie. I also got a tropical springtail culture which I will add part of to the tank and the other will be cultured in to more springtails.

I also installed coco panels to the upper half of the tank. Looks alright. Now I can get some stuff growing on the back and maybe I can get my humidity up which I have been having some problems with. I also need to build a light rack to get the lights off the glass as I high slightly high temps in the tank as well, around 80 on average. I think getting some space between the lights and the glass top of the tank should help. Well, that is it for now as far as an update. I will get an updated FTS up when I get the tank back together. Thanks for reading and feel free to comment on anything you see/read here.

Oh, and I have decided that my frogs will be a group of 3-5 Terribilis.

New plants in today from Josh's Frogs. Just like last time, everything arrived in great shape. Did a little rearranging as well. Let me know what you think...

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Nice.... I am about to start a construction log myself.

Thats Amazin!

Nubster, I didn't see this updated post before. Your viv looks awesome.

great viv

Thanks everyone. I should have the frogs second or third week in September.

Well, not much to update. Plants are growing in nicely. I plan to order my frogs Monday so I should have them Tuesday. I am getting a group of 5 p. terribilis mints from Josh's Frogs. I will definitely post some pics when they arrive. I need to setup 5 quarantine setups this weekend to be ready for their arrival. Very excited Big Grin

How exciting. I was so excited about the arrival of my first frog that I took the day off from work.

Frogs ordered and should be here Tuesday !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Your viv looks awesome... I love the pieces you built... could you please post a close up of the waterfall with water in it... it is in the side of one picture but can't see how it all looks with water.... how is it doing now? It looks very cool!

Here is the water feature with water.

[Image: WaterFall-1.jpg]

The silicon has actually failed in a couple spots which I think is a combo of using cheapo silicon and not enough time to cure. I have since made a whole new feature which is curing now for over a week and I will install it in the next couple weeks while the frogs are in QT. That way there should not be a curing issue. If this one fails I will buy and install a factory made resin water feature. I really want want in the tank as much for looks as to help keep the humidity levels high enough. I guess time will tell.

Thanks so much for posting the close up! It looks awesome! Please let me know how the new one does... I was wondering about that as we are just experimenting now with building our own. I finally got up the courage after watching so many construction posts... previously I didn't trust my construction skills (probably still dont' but everyone is convincing me it isn't as hard as it looks Smile ) and we always bought the factory made small water falls for the same reason- to keep the humidity up and also because the frogs in all of our tanks love them and I worry about water bowls getting too stagnant and posing a potential health problem. The waterfalls do a great job of keeping the humidity up and reducing the frequency of misting... in fact when we were out of town and our waterfall stopped functioning on one of the tanks when we came back and I fixed it, the frogs were so excited they went into a breeding frenzy and were laying eggs every few days they liked it so much!
However, I wanted to warn you that the factory made ones are far from perfect.... We have had about 15 of the Exo ones and for some reason we have a frequent problem with them seeming to leak... I have exchanged about 8 of them for that... I never could find the leak if I filled it and watched it after I removed it from the tank, but I would fill the water and then the next morning I would come out and the water reservoir would be nearly empty and the tank is flooded.... very very frusterating which is why I am finally trying my construction skills on several tanks... I am starting with some very small tanks- 5 gallon or so for the newly morphed froglets as grow tanks... and building small water fall features into the back to test out different techniques before I mess up the big tanks... I am starting my first 10 gallon right now and also a 20 gallon to replace one of the tanks with a pre-fabbed waterfall that I am really sick of dealing with the flooding and waterfall exchanges, so bought another tank I am building and will move the frogs to it whenever it gets finished....
The other problem with the factory waterfalls is that the water capacity is so small that they run out quite quickly and you have to remove the cover to refill them without flooding the tank. It is easy to burn out the motors this way as they run out within a few days and we have had a few motors melt when we were out of town and people didn't fill properly.
Where is the pump located in yours? Is it below a false bottom underneath? If so, this allows for a much greater water capacity and easier maintenence...
Anyway, just wanted to let you know to give it a good shot with your next one before just buying one as I am going the opposite route now... I wonder if you build it in smaller layers of foam allowing it to dry at each level if that would help?? That is what I am going to try on this larger one I think as I would hate to have it leak at the end... yours looks awesome though and I love the fact that you built it in a fashion that makes it easily removable and exchangeable... at least it looks that way... please let me know how it goes this time! Good luck!

Yeah, it seems that most people build theirs by applying the foam directly to the glass where mine was built out of the tank so I can just lift it out as a complete unit. The pump is under the feature in a glass cake pan so I have about 1/2 gallon of water. The access is from behind, I left a hole large enough I can actually get my whole hand in there to mess with things. As far as the foam, it seems to holding well and no leaks. However there is some leaching from the sand that is covering the feature, it leaches some water over the edge of the waterfall and down into the substrate but really no big deal. I will try to get a shot of where the silicon failed on the original feature. It isn't too big an area but I am afraid that it has contaminated the water which may hurt the frogs once they are in the tank. It is still in the tank working to keep the humidity up and once I thoroughly test the new one I will replace it soon. I just had should surgery on Tuesday so my left arm is not as mobile as I would like yet so it will be a couple weeks before I can do much work on the tank anyways.

Wooo Hooo !!!!! They're HERE !!!! How exciting. My first frogs. They are in QT now. I grabbed a shot or two. This is one of the frogs emerging from it's transport cup...I can't wait to get these guys in their new home.

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