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Posted by junglehabitats on April 25, 2003 at 13:04:47:
In Reply to: I would like everyone's thoughts on this idea... posted by NZ on April 25, 2003 at 11:36:38:
:I am thinking of making a large enclosure for a pair of Gopher snakes out of this Sauder TV stand:
:It's very stirdy and looks great and easy to assemble. The front double doors already have the glass in them and it looks like it will be simple to conver it into a cage. I would like your ideas on how I should waterproof the interior, I was thinking of just laminting it, will this work? Where do you think would be a good place for air vents? I was thinking of installing air vents in the back only, just to keep the profetional look of the stand, would that be adequate enough for ventilation? How can I install a light fixture inside that would be safe for the snakes? I am also having trouble thinking of a way to keep the substrate inside when the doors are opened. I wold like easy access when cleaning, I was thinking of making a slide out drawer base so I can clean it easy, but I don't know exactly how to do it right! Should I seal the joints or just leave it as is? If anyone is thinking of make a nice looking large cage and doesn't want to spend too much money and time I think this idea would work great. Thanks for any ideas you can share.
Ok well since you asked heres a few things to ponder on.
1. this unit says it uses " twist lock" fasteners this tells me its made of one of two things .. MDF or particle board ( particle board is the most likely)
2. this means the surface is more then likely a "thermofoil like surface" meaning its a simulated woodgrain that with any nic's or scrapes will allow water or moisture to penetrate it causing swelling and weeping of the actuall stand.
3.This unit if used with a TV on top of it would IMHO with in a year or less start to show signs of age with that being sagging of doors , top and bottom.
4.IMHO the cost of that versus a true cage made for a reptile or atleast a true "wood" would be a better investment of your $ for your snake and get a longer life out of it .
Now to answer the questions you had .
1--I would like your ideas on how I should waterproof the interior, I was thinking of just laminting it, will this work?
---Yes it would work but you will more then likely need to scrath the surfaces you plan to laminate so that the glue would have something to bond to ( not a slick simulated surface )this would assure a good adhesion to the surface being covered
2--Where do you think would be a good place for air vents? I was thinking of installing air vents in the back only, just to keep the profetional look of the stand
----Yes that would work , i would look into finding round vents via a roofing supply store these look very nice installed and will provide a wealth of circulation
3--I would look into using a under cabinet type lighting these can be various type lights and IMHO the halogen lights look the best a 3 pack can be picked up for less then $30 and are very easy to install just 3 screws and connect the plugs to a low voltage xformer supplied in the kit.
4--for the substrate litter dam , pick you up a piece of hardwood from a local HI store , i would get a 2-21/2" oak solid board for this and then pre-drill your holes in the stand itself then flip it upside down apply a bead of silicone to the bottom side of the litter dam board then screw it to the cage from the bottom side this will keep it secure and seal it from moisture wicking in to the open joint.
ok i think thats all i have for now