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Posted by chris_harper2 on May 05, 2003 at 10:33:45:
In Reply to: Questions on wood cage posted by Aisha on May 04, 2003 at 23:18:53:
Poplar is a good choice if you're inexperienced with wood-working, IMO. It's a faily soft and forgiving wood but seems to be straighter/less warped than pine (another forgiving wood to work with).
What kind of finish you use will depend a lot on how you set up your substrate. I've kept Leopard Geckos with a deep sand substrate where the bottom was slightly moist. This allowed the geckos to dig burrows etc.
This type of substrate is pretty brutal on finished wood and will require a durable substrate. Even oil-based poly would break down over time. In this case you'd probably want to use a laminate or epoxy on the cage floor and up the sides as far as the substrate will be deep. The rest of the cage could be sealed with water-based polyurethane.
If you will be using dry substrate only and providing plastic boxes for moist areas you could use water-based polyurethane.
Any furniture stain should be safe. Avoid exterior deck stains as they offgas for extended periods of time.