Building my own Cham enclosure

Gabe Ma

New Member
Hello, i am new to this forum. I have had a juvenile Cham and I have been thinking on building a 24x24x48 enclosure since the reptibreeze are so hard to find.
So far, I plan to use wood studs from lowes to build the enclosure frames, then use aluminum screen and staple them into the wood. and use nails to put the structure together. My question is, what can I use to seal the wood? I suppose wood studs will not hold up long term in a cham enclosure since its always humid and wet for a large portion of time. Can you guys give me any suggestions and insight for my build. Also, if anyone can share a blueprint so I can have a guide line for my build. Thanks everyone!
 

Klyde O'Scope

Chameleon Enthusiast
Is this to be an indoor or outdoor enclosure?
Are you thinking of all-screen or hybrid?
Standard or Bioactive?

For sealing, multiple coats of polyurethane will be fine. I like to use multiple coats of triple-thick, but I have a tendency to overdesign. Be sure to cover the nail heads—they can rust. If this is an outdoor enclosure, I'd use an oil-based exterior polyurethane; it will take longer to outgas, but it will better stand up to weather.

The wood should hold up as long as it doesn't sit in water (like a drain pan).

For ideas, there are several Enclosure Picture Threads at the top of this forum, as well as
diy chameleon enclosure

There are also several vids on YT on building DIY versions like a reptibreeze.
https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=diy+chameleon+cage+part+1

 

Gabe Ma

New Member
Thank you for your response klyde, I am planning this to be indoor. where I live will not be well for a cham outdoors haha.
Ive heard people both say things about bioactive and bar bottom. what do you suggest? I would like to use a bioactive setup. I would like to be all screen but if i go hybrid, which panels would be plexiglass? Thanks for the sealant recommendation.
 

Klyde O'Scope

Chameleon Enthusiast
I have no preference with regard to bioactive as long as one does their homework and is aware of the challenges. Lots of discussions in the archives. I prefer less maintenance.
https://reptifiles.com/bioactive-vivarium-maintenance/

Unless you live in a very humid climate year-round, I think a hybrid enclosure is easier to achieve & maintain humidity levels. Panels don't have to be plexi, though that's a common choice for the door(s). Side & back panels are usually solid, but that can be plexi, PVC, wood, sheet aluminum, or some combination. The top and a portion of the front (near the bottom) are usually screen to allow for ventilation.

Take a look at the pictures of enclosures in the links above—endless possibilities.

There are also alternatives to reptibreeze for commercially made.
https://www.diycages.com/collection...ducts/sc4-48x24x24-jumbo-vertical-screen-cage (all screen)
https://www.zenhabitats.com/products/2x2x4-pvc-reptile-enclosure-1 (hybrid)
 
Top Bottom