Heat cord

Discussion in 'General Reptile Discussion' started by Buggster, Jun 13, 2018.

  1. Buggster

    Buggster Well-Known Member

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    slightly confused about what I can use to secure a heat cord.
    Tape? Electrical tape? Duct tape?
    Thanks
     
  2. Flaviemys purvisi

    Flaviemys purvisi Very Well-Known Member

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    I've used electrical tape on a 20w cord. Works good.
     
  3. Buggster

    Buggster Well-Known Member

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    Thanks! Wasn’t sure if it was ‘use electrical’ or ‘don’t use electrical’.
     
  4. Bluetongue1

    Bluetongue1 APS Veteran APS Veteran

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    Whereabouts do you want to use and why? Are we talking inside an enclosure or outside?
     
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  5. Pauls_Pythons

    Pauls_Pythons Power Seller Power Seller

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  6. cris

    cris Almost Legendary

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    The wattage per meter and exactly how it is being used is very important. Some heat cords can melt plastic fairly quick or even start a fire if you are not careful. The low power ones are pretty safe unless you bunch them up.
     
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  7. Buggster

    Buggster Well-Known Member

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    DIY incubator. Going to run it on a thermostat + have extra thermometers so overheating shouldn’t be an issue!
    20W 4.3m
     
  8. cris

    cris Almost Legendary

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    I have never used tape for this sort of thing. With that wattage electrical tape should be fine. Blutak works if it does not get hot.

    Probably worth running the design by the forum if it is your first incubator. It is simple but I have made some bad ones when I started.
     
  9. Buggster

    Buggster Well-Known Member

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    13ACFD3C-573F-45A1-AC97-3FB6DF2A355E.jpeg
    Rubix cube for size. Was more playing around with how I would fit all the coil in there as opposed to how nice it looks. Cord has been in storage in a coil for a while so need the tape to hold it down. I did run it, and it easily went to 30 and was maintained well with the thermostat. I am planning on insulating the outside with styrofoam boards.
    I have an egg tray (Ironbark’s gecko egg tray) which I plan to use with this. Wanting to use the lid as the base and the container as the hood (so the box is flipped upside down) so the air stays warm. The tub is also supposed to hold water crystals underneath so in putting a heat source underneath I’d imagine it would just evaporate off too much water.

    For the species I have I’m only going to need to run it at 29-30 degrees so things shouldn’t get too hot.

    Not expecting eggs for a while either- just wanting to get a head start so I can play around with things first.
     
  10. cris

    cris Almost Legendary

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    9/10 for effort. It might work... fair chance you get condesation and drown the critters. They will not solve the rubix cube unless they switch the stickers.
    --- Automatic Post Merged, Jun 13, 2018, Original Post Date: Jun 13, 2018 ---
    If you run the cord on the lid should be good :););):mad: who choose these emiticons?:rolleyes::oops::eek::D:cool::(:D GAF
     
  11. Buggster

    Buggster Well-Known Member

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    That’s what the idea of using the lid of the container as the base and the body as the lid is from. Don’t want the water getting direct heat.
    I’d imagine putting in air holes might just let too much heat escape during the day. Would opening up the container and letting it ‘breathe’ for a minute or so help? Going to get a hydrometer to monitor the humidity and hopefully do a full run tomorrow (with the tray + water crystals all set). I’ll have to see how it goes I guess.

    Gotta start them young with the learning right xD
     
  12. Flaviemys purvisi

    Flaviemys purvisi Very Well-Known Member

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    Your image depicts exactly how I've used my cords with electrical tape. Works really well.
     
  13. pythoninfinite

    pythoninfinite Subscriber Subscriber

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    Judging from the dimension of the heatcord, it looks like a very small container, which gives you little flexibility when it comes to even temperature management. The smaller the box, the more rapidly it will heat and cool, when you need the stability imparted by a larger container. You should really have a much larger tub (I've used polystyrene broccoli boxes from the veggie market very effectively in the past - automatically well insulated, and plenty of room), and included a couple of water-filled milk bottles as heat sinks to further stabilise temperatures. You should not need more wattage than you have now, because these boxes are well sealed and well insulated, but you need to set it up for at least a week in advance of use to let it fully stabilise to the temps you require. It doesn't matter if it takes a couple of days to reach the temps you want and become stable, because you are after gentle stability. The advantage of the water bottles is that when you take the lid off for any reason, the warmth they have absorbed will assist the heat cord to bring the temps back fairly quickly without the cord overshooting the required temps, (which they do in the reheating phase), and they also help keep the temps stable for longer in the case of a power outage or other problem.

    A small computer fan (used to be availabe from Dick Smith's, but now probably Jaycar as well), about $20, will assist in distributing the heat very evenly, and prevent a buildup of condensation on the inside of the eggbox lid, which may drip onto the eggs and kill them.

    Remember that the temperature you want needs to be measured INSIDE the egg box, not from the space in the incubator.

    Jamie
     
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  14. Buggster

    Buggster Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the suggestion! I think i do have a couple of styrofoam broccoli boxes somewhere in the house...

    The egg tray I have comes with a lid- I assume I’m meant to keep the lid on that closed also?

    And in terms of heat cord placement inside a larger box, is it just a matter of distributing it evenly along the walls of the container?

    Milk bottles are a great idea for maintaining temps- thanks for the suggestion!

    I’m a bit unsure of the computer fan- where to place it and how to mount it to the container and such. Would you happen to have any pictures?
     
  15. cris

    cris Almost Legendary

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    There are different ways that work, increasing the size to at least the size of a broccoli box and adding water bottles or anything with thermal mass is always a good idea. I don't think fans are essential, but can help. I used to use old computer fans and find a suitable transformer, for an old phone or something similar and wire them up, you can find this stuff for free usually.

    I normally use old fridges, fill them with bottles and lumps of metal and the effect of the heat rising prevents condensation without the need for a fan. In a big fridge you can get a temperature gradient that allows you to incuabate at multiple temps.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2018
  16. pythoninfinite

    pythoninfinite Subscriber Subscriber

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    Yes, lid on the eggbox should be closed. The fan isn't essential, but if you notice condensation on the inside of the lid of the egg box, you should always wipe it away before it gets to the stage of dripping onto the eggs - it usually starts as a misting on the inside of the lid, and if you remove it daily or at least before it has the chance to run together and form drips, you'll be fine. You'll get more condensation if your heat source is lower down and under the eggbox because the top will remain cooler and allow the water vapour to condense more readily, and the use of a fan (the smaller the better), ensures very even distribution of the heated air - it doesn't really matter where it is, as long as it isn't pointing directly at the egg box.

    Remember you don't want a furnace in there - slow gentle heat is the way to go, set it up with your thermostat probe and thermometer probe in the eggbox, and adjust over a day or two until the interior of the eggbox is stable at the temps you are after.

    It seems a bit complex, but it's quite simple in practice if you follow a few principles.

    Jamie
     
  17. Buggster

    Buggster Well-Known Member

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    Finally got around to redoing the whole thing!

    Now in a styrofoam box and all set up and running.

    Let it run without the thermostat for a bit to see if it could get up the temps. Easy went over 40, so I’m happy with that. Connected everything up and put the probe (thermostat and thermometer) inside the egg box. Have it all set to 30 degrees- and it seem to be holding well. Just going to have to let it all sit and stabilise over the next few days.

    Current have one juice container in there- will add a second one as soon as I finsh drinking it all.

    Also have a thermometer probe outside of the egg box to monitor the temps in the incubator itself.

    Any further suggestions?
    --- Automatic Post Merged, Jun 21, 2018, Original Post Date: Jun 21, 2018 ---
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