My Best Night Box Design Yet

cemmons12

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Very nice setup Tom! Wish I was good at building like you! But I am working on Coopers new "part time" enclosure now, just need to get a couple pieces of wood and a piece of plexi for the front and its finally done. Money has been the only hold up but I will get it sooner or later..
 

ra94131

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StudentoftheReptile said:
Tom, approximately what was the cost of this project, namely the wood materials and RHP? I'm looking to something large enough for 2-3 adult redfoots and then another for a single sulcata. What dimensions (especially for the sulcata) would you suggest?

I am still trying to work out the best dimensions for my Sulcata as well; he'll be comfortable outside most of the year so I don't want over do it. And he's still much too small for me to properly visualize what size it needs to be down the line... if anyone has some insight, I'd love to hear it.

Also, Tom, do you do anything to aid in water runoff? We don't get frequent rain here, but when we do it can come down pretty hard...

I'm thinking I might do a hybrid of your design here and this insulated dog house step-by-step (http://www.ronhazelton.com/projects/how_to_build_a_custom_insulated_dog_house) that I found.

Hoping to get started soon.
 

Tom

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I think 4x4 is a good size for a single sulcata.

For water protection, I raise the boxes up on skids. I use pressure treated 2x4s. The bottom of the box is another 2" tall, so that makes the floor of the enclosure 3.5" off the ground. I use doors that are hinged on the bottom, so by day they act as a ramp in and out of the box and by night its a door that I latch closed to keep them warm and safe.

If you think the water might get higher than that, you can use pressure treated 4x4s, or put it up on stilts.
 

ra94131

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One more question Tom: how heavy was that? Or more to my point, how difficult to move?

I'm finalizing plans to build something similar, but approximately half the size.
 

Tom

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I move the boxes with the lids off. Two men can carry this with no problem. I'm a medium sized guy and my helper was a 6' 135 pound guy. He and I carried the box about 150 feet, over a low wall and through a doorway with no problem. It probably weighs about 100 pounds without the lid, so a smaller one would weigh less. I reattach the lid once its in place.
 

Gtiger66

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This looks great. I am thinking of ideas for my yard. This is inspiring.
 

Team Gomberg

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Tom, you mention that the insulation helps keep the hide cooler, too.

Have any temperature examples? When it's 100F+ outside, what are the temps inside the box?

I "get" the thermostat turning on a heat source to maintain a minimum temperature but I'm not too sure I get how to keep it from getting too hot inside. Then again, I don't deal with insulation so maybe that's why. :p

Sent from my TFOapp
 

Irish

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You have great carpentry skills. It is built right, and built to last. Where did you find the mini heater?
 

Tom

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Team Gomberg said:
Tom, you mention that the insulation helps keep the hide cooler, too.

Have any temperature examples? When it's 100F+ outside, what are the temps inside the box?

I "get" the thermostat turning on a heat source to maintain a minimum temperature but I'm not too sure I get how to keep it from getting too hot inside. Then again, I don't deal with insulation so maybe that's why. :p

Sent from my TFOapp

My old boxes used to get up to 120 when outside temps were 100+. This never seemed to bother the tortoises. They came and went as they pleased. These new boxes never creep past the low 90s on our super hot days.


Irish said:
You have great carpentry skills. It is built right, and built to last. Where did you find the mini heater?

Thanks man. I'm entirely self taught. Getting better, but still a lot left to learn.

Here are the two types I have. Got the one at Walmart and the other at HomeGoods. It says 500 watts on the description, but that is on high. I run them on low which uses only 200 watts on the one and 250 watts on the other. Because the boxes are so well insulated and sealed, the heaters only run for a short time each night even when the temps dip below freezing.

http://www.midlandhardware.com/115304.html#.UiOzWha1wy4

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...H-000A-00017&gclid=CJ7jn4eUq7kCFY9xQgodiEIAug
 

sibi

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Some of the best work I've seen in construction. Very polished and efficient. As you may know, I'm using a 12 x12 ' shed and converting it into the outdoor enclosure. I've ordered their heat blanket by Trane, and i will be posting pics as i start to install everything. The box for the heater is a good idea, and I'll steal the other guys idea of putting 1/4 holes on the sides of it. Since I'm no spring chicken and lack carpentry skills, i cheated and took the easy (more expensive) route. But, sure wish i had your skills. Beautiful work as always my friend.
 

Tom

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Hallbomber said:
Whats the substrate type stuff inside??

I like to use grass hay. Bermuda in this case. Its easy to rake out. They like to "burrow" into it, and they can eat it on those days that I take too long to get their food to them.
 

Team Gomberg

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Tom said:
Team Gomberg said:
Have any temperature examples? When it's 100F+ outside, what are the temps inside the box?

My old boxes used to get up to 120 when outside temps were 100+. This never seemed to bother the tortoises. They came and went as they pleased. These new boxes never creep past the low 90s on our super hot days.

Great, thanks.

I'm planning on moving my largest leopard into the full yard next spring. I'm starting my plans for the heated hide and of course your box is my "role model" lol
 
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