Zen style tube frame custom 2x4x4 enclosure build!

BryanP

Established Member
The long awaited (by me and anyone who has been listening since April) build of my custom, zen habitats style build.

Specs are:
2'x4'x4'
Black PVC sides, back, and bottom
2 sansi plant LED lights
4ft Arcadia 6.0 with Arcadia fixture
Mistaking with 2 double nozzles
Ultrasonic humidifier
Govee sensors bottom and top (opposite corners)


This is just starting to take shape, got all my cuts done over the weekend and just finished the assembly tonight.

Next will be to work in a few bottom supports and screen supports up top, glue in the window track and cut the acrylic windows to fit.

After that I will need to work on the base cabinet that I am building custom for this. That's where I will have my power strip (wifi controlled 6 outlet). The idea will be to add a box on the back where I will only have 1 cord to plug into the wall and everything else will stay inside.

I have some dragon ledges that I have left over from a screen cage I used to use and I have 2ftx4ft of black PVC to make as many more as I need.

I am going to make a naturalistic background with some 4ftx4ft foam covered in dry lock and painted.

I will continue to update this as I go along. Hope to have the cabinet worked out this weekend so check back as I progress!

I have also included some pics of the little guy I got over the weekend at the southern California Reptile expo. @Kamerflage was the breeder so I'm SUPER excited to be making such a statement piece in our house.


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BryanP

Established Member
Awesome! Is the screen going in the top or bottom portion of the front sections?

Top only. The front will be clear acrylic (solid on bottom) as will the doors.

With the top being so open I'm not worried about air flow as the bypass doors will have an air gap 33in wide as well.

My relative humility in my area is about average 40% year round with lows for about 3 weeks in the summer/fall (when santa Anna winds blow in in October/November) down to the single digits and we rarely see highs above 60 or 70%.

I had a screen enclosure before but I'm pretty sure it was responsible for killing my last chameleon. Just cant beat nature.
 
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Klyde O'Scope

Chameleon Enthusiast
Moot now, but for others considering similar build, some suppliers do sell a double-track door profile (different for top & bottom).
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You can use these, and leave the sides flush. It'll accommodate 1/4" thk glass/acrylic.
 

ERKleRose

Chameleon Enthusiast
Top only. The front will be clear acrylic (solid on bottom) as will the doors.

With the top being so open I'm not worried about air flow as the bypass doors will have an air gap 33in wide as well.

My relative humility in my area is about average 40% year round with lows for about 3 weeks in the summer/fall (when santa Anna winds blow in in October/November) down to the single digits and we rarely see highs above 60 or 70%.

I had a screen enclosure before but I'm pretty sure it was responsible for killing my last chameleon. Just cant beat nature.
I would switch it up for better air circulation. Screen on the bottom and the acrylic up top, otherwise the air in the bottom of the cage is just stagnant and settled down, which can cause problems.

I'm sorry! If you don't mind me asking, how did your last cham die?
 

BryanP

Established Member
how did your last cham die?
So we lived near the coast in California and he lived in a zoomed reptibreeze for 2.5 years so he was about 3 when we moved more inland to a much drier area. After the move, everything was exactly the same, except where we lived. The relative humidity where we live now is about 40% average so I could never keep the humidity level between 50-70% for more than a few hours. I would going through gallons with the most king but after about 3 months he started to go down hill, he would miss his food with his tongue and then after awhile he stopped shooting it completely.

After that he lasted about another month or 2 and then died.

I have to think it was the humidity because he thrived for 2.5 years when I got him.

Either that or it was the fact his enclosure was right behind my electric panel on the wall with a smart meter and it cooked him with microwaves but I dont have anyone else to go by and when I moved him because I was suspecting that was the problem he didnt change so maybe thats just my way of making me not the problem.



Now with this new guy I'm super stressed about him doing well. He ate and everything but now anytime I see him sitting and not exploring I get worried that it will go down the same path.

He ate 7 med Dubias and pooped like 3 times already.

Maybe I'm just stressing too much! I've only had him in his new cage for 3 days...

I would switch it up for better air circulation. Screen on the bottom and the acrylic up top, otherwise the air in the bottom of the cage is just stagnant and settled down, which can cause problems

I think that I will cut down some of the plastic on the bottom and add this on top of it. It is 16" currently of the clear acylic and this is about 4" so it will have some venting across the bottom. It is gutter guard but it is black powder coated so it will look good.
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BryanP

Established Member
Working on the background today. Some 3in styrofoam "carved" with a blowtorch. Now I need to paint it. I have some extra peices so I may add some to the surface and carve it back to give it some more depth. Also maybe build in some ledges.
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I also added some screen above the bottom glass to help with a little more air flow.
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Now I need to figure out how to seal the bottom from leaks and work out my drainage.
 

ERKleRose

Chameleon Enthusiast
If you're not going biactove, could you switch the gutter guard and glass so the gutter guard is on the bottom?
 

BryanP

Established Member
Yeah I could probably do that if the screen will support the weight without bending or buckling. I'll give it a shot.

What's the thinking behind at the bottom vs up a foot?
 

BryanP

Established Member
Got to work on some background today. Have to make a base for the branch and get that stable and foam in some pots, then sculpt those and touch the paint up.

The back is 3in styrofoam and the sides are 1in. I also have a ton of cork and wood branches I am going to add for some depth.

Turns out dry lock, what every youtuber seems to use, is just acrylic based paint and so I found some exterior oops paint and had the guy tint it a darker grey. Cost was $9 from $57 for the gallon.

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BryanP

Established Member
Test fitting the panels and marking the locations for some built in 4in pots. I will set them with expanding foam and also allow for drainage with some tubing. I will get some pictures up tomorrow after they cure and I carve them to make them look better.


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BryanP

Established Member
Ok, last update before I get the final coat of paint on. Next time you see this it will be onto the stand build.

You can see is the picture the drain pan I had built by a HVAC supply. The enclosure fits into it with a 1/2in all around. The drain will come out the back and into a bucket in the stand.
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