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Terrarium Set-up Cost

Hi Singaporeans,

I wld like to find out how much u guys spent on a terrarium. (tank + light) I'm looking at the possibility of a terrarium, possibly about 2 ft in length.

Hmm. I cannot remember the price of my two tier two foot tanks. Probably less than S$50. No tanks covers, that is why it is rather inexpensive. There are plenty of Luo Han fish shops around, maybe can get a cheap one from them. Lights are from a single unit housing two compact florescent tube set up for planted tanks (tubes 6500K, 36 watts each). I think the price was S$98 for the lights. I have a timer, very old, cannot remember the price, probably less than S$30. Most important is an ultrasonic humidifier from FEF (Thomson) for about S$48.

Lights switched on for 16 hours a day. I got my aluminium foil for free to wrap around the entire tanks to make sure that as much of the lights get bounced back into the tank. Lights has helped to make some of my plants redder.

Due to the long period of time that the lights are on, evaporation is very high. I keep about an inch and a half of RO water at the bottom of the tank to maintain humidity at a decent level. The ultrasonic humidifier also helps to keep temperatures down.

You can figure out how much the whole setup cost. I can't count and that is why I study biology!
As for the lighting, do they come pre-wired and all, so all I've to do is to plug it in?
ebeyonder: what plants u intend to put inside?
VFT will not survive well, even if u use PL lights that are high in intensity, i tried it b4,
its quite well suited to neps, but then again they may outgrow the tank in no time.
A humidifier is not really needed in the tank since the side walls seem to conceal all the mositure, get a hygrometer instead.
I'm in the process of building a cooling unit for one of my 4 ft tanks, hopefully if all turns out well, i'll be able to grow those beautiful highland neps.
I plan to put seedlings into the terrarium cos I can't find a place where there is light and shelter from the rain, winds, etc. And perhaps some sundews, like the pygmies.
I agree with vistary that the VFT does not need to be in the terrarium. All mine are out in the open.

eBeyonder: The light unit comes pre-wired. Just plug in and let there be light! PM me if you need details of the shop from where I bought the light unit.

My terrarium needs an ultrasonic humidifier because my room gets get dry when the aircon is switched on. In addition, my room is not extremely humid and averages 60-70% even in these northeast monsoon months.

I mainly grow Drosera, Utricularia, raise seedlings and cuttings, and to acclimatize them TC plantlets.

Vistary, could you elaborate more about your cooling plans? Would you be using a peltier cell or an aquarium chiller unit? I have been thinking about buying an aquarium chillers but they are increadibly expensive (almost S$1000&#33
Yup, Peltier cell and a pc fan, juz to cool a small area, but as my exams r near, i m putting my plans on the hold,
I'm not from Singapore, but I'm sure you've got the same type of stuff for this. I checked around for sales and such, was able to get two 12" shop light setups for $20USD, growlights $7USD each. Those are put back to back, with the lights facing down. Stick a metal rod through the two screw holes on the sides, hang on terrarium, and voila - suspended lights. Here's a pic:

Vistary, regarding the peltier cell plan, how much would u estimate that to cost? That is, the entire set-up, with the cell, fan etc. Looking for a solution for my VFT dormancy.
  • #10
the peltier cell set up is very much localised and will only be able to bring the temp down to say 20C; its not suitable for VFT dormancy which req about 12C; moreover peltier cells r very exp, a small one cost abt $100,
Actually, the best way of cooling a terrarium is to either get one of those chillers for marine tanks abt $700 or to get a wine fridge with glass doors. =)
  • #11
Looks like I'll really have to consider getting a fridge... but as I've only 3 VFTs and 1 Sarracenia to put into dormancy, it would not really justify getting a fridge for that

I did see a wine chiller at about $200 at Suntec City a few mths back tho. Decent size, temp adjustable, could be worth consideration... after my exams though!
  • #12
does the wine chiller hav a glass door?
also, what is the temp range?
which part of suntec?
u may pm me, i really intend to get a cheap fridge.
  • #13
It has a glass door, temp range from 4 -- 16 degrees C I think. It's at Carrefour.
  • #14
great, i may get it after my examz, but how big is it exactly?
can I fit in a nepenthes?
  • #15
Well it's about the size of a bar fridge, so it's not really that big, esp for mature neps. Prob more so for VFTs dormancy.
  • #16
hello everyone,
today i bought a 72 watt flouresant light set up, 6500K, "ballas" that means heatless and saves 30% of for $95 and a 2 ft x 1ft tank in lenght for $12. i bought these from an aquarium shop that guqin recomended. Now all i need is a humidity maker thing and a timer...
what does a timer do?
  • #17
About how much wattage is required for sundews? I'm assuming that the correct term is "wattage"

I have seen some tanks with 20W tubes included quite cheaply. Will 20W be enough?
  • #18
i dont think so, you have to ask Cindy or guqin.
i think that has been discussed before but i cant find the board.
  • #19
I'll recommend 2X 35W PL (daylight) tubes coz the intensity is higher, best is that it has E-ballast.
The timer is for the lights.
Humidity is usually high in a terrarium, so i dont think u will need a humidifier.
Anyway, I find it rather costly to maintain, I used to have such a setup.
Natural sunlight is still the best.
  • #20
what does a timer do?