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Snake Enclosure Rack Build Journal


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Hi! Don't know where else to post this journal, seeing as it's a DIY build for animals, but for reptiles instead. I'm not gonna go into too much backstory, but I decided to document my progress on building a snake enclosure rack to store my two 120 (4 x 2 x 2) gallon and one 180 (4 x 3 x 2) gallon snake terrariums! These next posts are catch-up from about a month or two ago:

Late-November to Early December(?)

 First one is of my newest tank, my 180 gal, for my Japanese Rat Snake! Sadly one of the glass panels that was shipped was broken on arrival, but I got a new one from the company!IMG_4980.jpg.7640373dd8295d1ae02c5e411a52c1eb.jpg

The fully assembled 180 gallon, it's huge! (peep the Legos, I'm a nerd)IMG_4983.jpg.d87aaac47f893d54e86837f78a603d80.jpg

Had to rig up my own light fixtures for it, but it's not my first rodeo. I made a TikTok on how to make a light fixture if anyone is curious as to how to make their own. Takes about 15 minutes to make! I bought a T5 fixture off of Amazon that's the exact same used for reptile enclosures for about $35 (for two!)

Edited by Oblivious_666
Added dates to the post!
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Next had to write up plans for building the rack, this was the most hair-pulling, annoying part. Good rule of woodworking: measure twice, cut once. Or in my case, measure 15-20 times, make two cuts. Enjoy all my chicken scratch as well. 😅

The first draft was a bunch of 2 x 4 s, sadly didn't fit my condo I'm renting out:


The second iteration was still too large, so I had to make even more tweaks, still not up to all the specifications I wanted but closer!


The final iteration was 3/4th inch melamine and 2 x 4s with eight 2.5" casters, and I could finally sleep well knowing I had a rock solid plan.


Basically I knew my 180 gallon tank had the structural integrity to hold my 120 gallon, so I build off that 5' mark to make a rack with as low clearance to the ceiling as possible and could support the weight of all the snake enclosures.

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Material buying time! This happened the past 2-3 weeks!

Not pictured but I scored a 48 x 96- 3/4" thick piece of scrap wood for $5 that was cut to the specifications (24" x 52") I needed, so that was a major win on my end. I bought a few materials beforehand but returned them because they were not needed for the final model.

I made the HORRIBLE mistake of not looking up how to install casters, so I had to make a run for another round of stuff, and walked out with all the proper materials in another run. Luckily no wood was wasted in the process of this fiasco.

My (not actually final) run was for 2 x 4s! I got four 8' ones and a 4' one as scrap wood, only cost me $28 (I don't know how much lumber was but I feel like that is a reasonable price!). Also yes I have all this lumber in my room at the moment, I might be a bit crazy. 😛


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This all leads up to today!

Just worked on the base, I'll get photos tomorrow of the end product, but it mainly consisted of sawing the wood for the casters to be installed on, installing the said casters, and finally 


I got to use a circular saw for the first time, and man those things are powerful! No casualties outside of my table that I don't mind using as a workbench! I want to find somewhere to saw and not potentially disturb the peace, but no one has said anything yet! For reference my roommates haven't heard anything right outside the backyard so I believe it's a green flag.IMG_5445.JPG.15335f43f21a08ecf659232a18c7cc37.JPG

Also peep my new toolbox! It's part of a three tier rolling system so I'm gonna eventually upgrade my tool ensemble! This was also taken before everything got covered in sawdust.


Thank you all for getting this far, and hope you have a nice day! I'll keep updating as often I remember, but I'm bad at documenting this sort of stuff. 😅

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Happy belated birthday to me!

Managed to finish all the wood cutting for the basic frame! Enjoy some photos of yours truly:

Making sure everything is in line:


Cutting through the 2 x 4!IMG_5533.jpg.30f746fbe6e41407ac7c0fa8d1fd2167.jpg

Planning on finishing the job today as well, seeing as I just have to put everything together!


Don't mind the mess! Putting the main supports on proved difficult!IMG_5535.jpg.1c84675079b0838c17085968f78f7dcc.jpg

Progress after my drill's battery ran out, I managed to finish pre-drilling the first half of the rack. Peep the Legos and the new snake enclosure! 😛IMG_5536.jpg.08a70fd2b278fcbed6fdc660156a7b10.jpg

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  • 3 weeks later...

 I have not forgotten! Just a more "live the moment" type of guy nowadays and I recently started working again. 🙂 I managed to finish building, staining, and stacking everything extremely quickly after! The only things missing from the last picture were mid-bottom braces for the back, which were 1/2" x 2" x 63" pieces of wood I sawed to size.

Here's the final result throughout the evening, starting with the 180 gallon on the bottom:IMG_5541.JPG.e74e259f98bfa38cdd2e19148aaab802.JPG

Next I got both of my roommates to help hoist the last two tanks:IMG_5548.JPG.44e39c7ea1e9b841e133b09e2dc7b895.JPG

Pushing it in place was easy enough, although I'd definitely have two people controlling the tanks, they're super heavy!:IMG_5549.JPG.f65e8f92ff90c6315cbe993992eaf4e6.JPGI'll do one last update in a couple months once I'm fully outfitting the snake enclosures! I definitely enjoyed this project, it came along very smoothly and I had a blast working with tools and watching it come to fruition! Definitely gonna be building some more things soon! 😊

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