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4X4X2 Reptile Enclosure

Discussion in 'General Construction' started by jdandlucy, Jan 6, 2013.

  1. jdandlucy

    jdandlucy Elite Member

    The new enclosure for my ball python is just about complete. just have to stain, silicone then seal the whole enclosure. the outside dimensions are 4' high 4' wide 2' deep. the inside is 3' high 3'10' wide 1'11" deep. On top of the living space their is almost 1' of space for lighting and heating, along with the thermometers and dimmers. the sliding glass doors cost me a total of $20 to build. build total for everything is JUST over $100. their is a 10x10 piece of glass in the back left corner for UTH. if you see anything that needs to be done before stain and seal plz let me know
     

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  2. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    To be honest I would just put in another shelf and make it 2 2ft tall enclosures. Adult Ball pythons are not much on climbing and you will have a lot of unused space to heat.

    And you want to seal the wood and then use the silicone.
     
  3. jdandlucy

    jdandlucy Elite Member

    my ball is always climbing his branch. that was the main reason to the height. ok on the seal then silicone.
     
  4. Vers

    Vers Elite Member

    It looks great so far. I would agree with Merlin that the height is a bit overkill and that you could get away with a double enclosure. I've got a feeling that you're seeing the animal climb as a means to escape, otherwise they are primarily terrestrial.
     
  5. TJOHNSON722

    TJOHNSON722 Elite Member

    My balls used to climb but now as adults they are all about thier floors. I would seperate it.
     
  6. norwegn113

    norwegn113 Well-Known Member

    Did you use 1/4" masonite for the side walls and back?
     
  7. jdandlucy

    jdandlucy Elite Member

    it is 1/4" hard board as it is called here. epa green material.
     
  8. norwegn113

    norwegn113 Well-Known Member

    I am very familiar with that material and offer this advice, make sure you use an extra coat of sealer on the hard board because it is very porous and will warp big time with even the slightest moisture or humidity. Your cage looks awesome by the way, nice job.
     
  9. jdandlucy

    jdandlucy Elite Member

    Ty for the input. I was expecting the humidity issue, so during the build I made sure the smooth face of the hardboard was inside. I still plan on 2 coats of sealer on entire enclosure. For right now this is the only one I am building for myself, so the rough side will be painted with a latex paint. A Co worker wants one for his boa, and hardboard will not be strong enough. What would you guys suggest in its place
     
  10. norwegn113

    norwegn113 Well-Known Member

    If you wanted to keep your current design and still be able to use 1/4" material , melamine board is much more moisture resistant or your could use hardboard and cover the inside with either laminate or an FRP product, then it's set for any moisture level.
     
  11. jdandlucy

    jdandlucy Elite Member

    All done working for the night. Got the enclosure half stained. Have some mods to do on the doors. And will get them sanded, and stained tomorrow. About the 1/4" hardboard for the boa, I was asking what to use instead for strength. My design is very flexable.
     
  12. norwegn113

    norwegn113 Well-Known Member

    Strengthening the cage for the boa I have to say that I'm a fanatic for plywood. It's my goto. 1/2" is plenty strong but is hard to assemble without cleats because it's thin, so I use 3/4" . It's study and accepts fasteners easily. I'm looking forward to the finished pics! I really like seeing other people's designs, it's kinda fun.
     
  13. jdandlucy

    jdandlucy Elite Member

    when ever i use any plywood 1/2" or thicker i use kreg pocket screws. nothing is stronger. and with the filler plugs you almost cant see them. as far as finishing this enclosure i still have a lot to do but it will be livable in a week. the temp controller is not cheap. it is a multi zone able to run 4 different heaters up to 500 watts each. i have used these before on different applications. but know they work very well. look in to plc(programmable logic controllers) temp controllers. all else fails i will get a thermometer with external sensors and wire a sensor to various points with a selector switch for each zone and control heat via dimmers. this is very erradic and dont allow for automatic power adjustment when the room gets warmer or cooler.
     
  14. Vers

    Vers Elite Member

    Honestly I do not think the animal will be able to break through a 1/4" ply panel with those dimensions. If you want to replace the hardboard with another material without having to re-rabbit (assuming that's what you did) the frames I would say go with 1/4" birch. If you want to make the thing virtually indestructible to can rabbit (again, assuming that's what you did) for 1/2" ply, but I don't think its necessary, especially for a smaller piece like yours. If you have no center support for the backing of the enclosure, 1/2" ply would probably be better here.
     
  15. jdandlucy

    jdandlucy Elite Member

    ty vers. all panels are in 3/8" deep rabbits. as far as a center support on the back that would be a simple mod to the design. ty everyone for all the input and compliments.
     
  16. jdandlucy

    jdandlucy Elite Member

    ok stain is drying. all that needs done as far as stain is the door frames tomorrow if i am home early enough i will start sealing. but here are recent pics. DSCN0266.jpg DSCN0267.jpg DSCN0268.jpg DSCN0273.jpg DSCN0275.jpg
     
  17. norwegn113

    norwegn113 Well-Known Member

    Looks really nice. What are you doing for the floor?
     
  18. jdandlucy

    jdandlucy Elite Member

    it will be just sealed no stain, and repti carpet for the time being. when i do the background i will be useing that shredded coconut husk. i am very pleased with the way it has turned out. i didnt have a wood shop full of tools either. table saw, chop saw, drill, jigsaw and sander.
     
  19. Thalatte

    Thalatte Elite Member

    That looks very nice.
     
  20. jdandlucy

    jdandlucy Elite Member

    ty all. this is just the first piece. of what will be come a 8'x8' or 10'x8' reptile wall in my spare room. my ball python is going in this when it is done while i build the correct size enclosure. this 4x4x2 will then be set up for greet tree python. the rest of the enclosures are 2@6x2 4@4x2 1@2x4 tall for a gecko or cham.
     

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