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View Full Version : One More AP rack question--help!



bugman426
01-01-2006, 08:16 PM
How do i stop this from happening?

The flexiwatt tape keeps sliding out of the little slots, which therefore makes my shoeboxes lose a good portion of their hot spot:

http://tinypic.com/jiyz9i.jpg
http://tinypic.com/jiyzac.jpg

Geckospot
01-01-2006, 09:10 PM
I ran the flexwatt in my rack through the pre routed grooves on the inside of the rack so I dont have that problem. Its also cleaner looking imho. What made you decide to use this wiring method? If I were you, I'd order some more heat tape and snake it through the grooves inside of the rack. You can save the tape you have for another project.

bugman426
01-01-2006, 09:15 PM
I ran the flexwatt in my rack through the pre routed grooves on the inside of the rack so I dont have that problem. Its also cleaner looking imho. What made you decide to use this wiring method? If I were you, I'd order some more heat tape and snake it through the grooves inside of the rack. You can save the tape you have for another project.


Thats what I did.....

The flexwatt IS going through the grooves on the inside of the rack....what other way is there to do it that your referring to?

I didnt want to snake the heat tape...i wanted one plug for each row

bugman426
01-01-2006, 09:18 PM
Think duct tape could do the job? As in hold down the ends to the side of the rack

I dont care about it looking clean...im the only one whos ever going to see it

Geckospot
01-01-2006, 10:51 PM
Thats what I did.....

The flexwatt IS going through the grooves on the inside of the rack....what other way is there to do it that your referring to?

I didnt want to snake the heat tape...i wanted one plug for each row

I ran the tape in the grooves from bottom to top across the sheves and up the side on the inside.





Think duct tape could do the job? As in hold down the ends to the side of the rack

I dont care about it looking clean...im the only one whos ever going to see it

Im sure duct tape will be fine.

Riverside Reptiles
01-01-2006, 11:00 PM
Don't use duct tape anywhere that heat is involved. It'll turn into a gooey mess. Use metal "foil" tape. Many of the online herp shops will try to sell it to you by the foot. But you can go to any hardware store and buy a whole roll of it for a few bucks.

bugman426
01-01-2006, 11:15 PM
Don't use duct tape anywhere that heat is involved. It'll turn into a gooey mess. Use metal "foil" tape. Many of the online herp shops will try to sell it to you by the foot. But you can go to any hardware store and buy a whole roll of it for a few bucks.

will it be strong enough to hold it down?

electrical tape is too weak for it, and im afraid the foil tape will be as well, unless its as strong as duct tape

Riverside Reptiles
01-01-2006, 11:31 PM
I use the foil tape for all of my flexwatt stuff and my heat rope stuff as well. The glue in it is plenty strong. Should be fine. It's made for hot/cold applications. Electrical tape, like duct tape doesn't deal with heat well at all. The glue just turns to goo.

bugman426
01-02-2006, 12:19 AM
Thanks

im using duct tape tonight and tomorrow will go to the hardware store and get some foil tape

the duct tape isnt touching the hot part though

Riverside Reptiles
01-02-2006, 01:53 PM
I don't know how the AP racks are built as I build my own. But can't you just foil tape the flexwatt down inside the rack itself so you don't have all that tape on the sides?

Elizabeth Freer
01-02-2006, 07:53 PM
...interesting thread...

bugman426
01-02-2006, 08:01 PM
I don't know how the AP racks are built as I build my own. But can't you just foil tape the flexwatt down inside the rack itself so you don't have all that tape on the sides?

ill see what i can do--the duct tape seems fine for now, but ill figure something out

Riverside Reptiles
01-02-2006, 10:08 PM
I'm curious now as to what the insides of these racks look like so I can see how they set them up for the flexwatt. Can you post a couple of pics of the shelves without the tubs in?

bugman426
01-02-2006, 10:37 PM
http://tinypic.com/jkeeck.jpg
http://tinypic.com/jkeeee.jpg
http://tinypic.com/jkeeir.jpg

Riverside Reptiles
01-02-2006, 11:27 PM
So it's just a groove routed in there for the flexwatt to lay down in? Slap some foil tape down over the flexwatt and you'll have no more issues with it coming out the side and you won't have to have duct tape schmucked all over the side of your rack. Even if you don't care about how it looks now, if you ever go to sell the rack in the future, it'll look much nicer (and be worth more) if it doesn't have duct tape residue all over the side of it. Just my opinion anyway. Thanks for posting the pics.

bugman426
01-02-2006, 11:39 PM
So it's just a groove routed in there for the flexwatt to lay down in? Slap some foil tape down over the flexwatt and you'll have no more issues with it coming out the side and you won't have to have duct tape schmucked all over the side of your rack. Even if you don't care about how it looks now, if you ever go to sell the rack in the future, it'll look much nicer (and be worth more) if it doesn't have duct tape residue all over the side of it. Just my opinion anyway. Thanks for posting the pics.

so i put the foil tape right over the heat tape?

Yes, its just a groove that the flexiwatt slides into

Haroldo
01-03-2006, 12:20 AM
So it's just a groove routed in there for the flexwatt to lay down in? Slap some foil tape down over the flexwatt and you'll have no more issues with it coming out the side and you won't have to have duct tape schmucked all over the side of your rack. Even if you don't care about how it looks now, if you ever go to sell the rack in the future, it'll look much nicer (and be worth more) if it doesn't have duct tape residue all over the side of it. Just my opinion anyway. Thanks for posting the pics.

so i put the foil tape right over the heat tape?

Yes, its just a groove that the flexiwatt slides into

Yep. The foil tape is aluminum with an adhesive on one side. It applies heat evenly.

AM Gecko
01-03-2006, 01:43 AM
This may be a stupid question, but why didn't you get the AP with the heat cables? I really do not understand why go through all this heat tape wiring when you can get them with the heat cable that snakes through the all racks and you only have one wire coming out from the back in the bottom instead of havng all those wires hanging. It is also much cheapper, I think, to get it that way.
Anyway, home depot has the alluminum duct tape for sure, I build all my first racks and that is how I made the heat tape stay down on the shelf, it works very well.
Alberto
Here is a small PIC how I set my custom made up.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v355/AMGecko/DSCN1077.jpg

Geckospot
01-03-2006, 01:56 AM
Alberto...I'm not sure why Mike wired the flexwatt the way he did but the flexwatt can be snaked through the pre-routed grooves on the inside with the one wire coming out the bottom.

bugman426
01-03-2006, 02:07 AM
Alberto...I'm not sure why Mike wired the flexwatt the way he did but the flexwatt can be snaked through the pre-routed grooves on the inside with the one wire coming out the bottom.

I was told that flexwatt wasnt made to be snaked through the rack so i didnt do it that way


and i couldnt use the heat cable because the room the rack is in isnt warm enough to use heat cable--so i needed to use flexwatt to get the desired temps

AM Gecko
01-03-2006, 02:08 AM
Alberto...I'm not sure why Mike wired the flexwatt the way he did but the flexwatt can be snaked through the pre-routed grooves on the inside with the one wire coming out the bottom.

I know it can but that is and can be dangerous, flexiwatt should always have the metal strips looking up and never touching downs for safety purpose and snaking the heat tape will give you one side up (correctly done) and one side down (not correctly and possibly dangerous). I know many people have done for many years with no problem but I sure did not take that chance with my animals, the first rack I build it like that and was only because I did not know about it, I got rid of that rack now and the others done right are more then 5 years old now and still working/looking perfect. Just my opinion, I wouldn't snake the heat tape at all, the heat cable is much safer and doesn't get too hot even with out a thermostat, heat tapes can melt plastic with a thermostat failure.
Alberto

bugman426
01-03-2006, 02:11 AM
Alberto...I'm not sure why Mike wired the flexwatt the way he did but the flexwatt can be snaked through the pre-routed grooves on the inside with the one wire coming out the bottom.

I know it can but that is and can be dangerous, flexiwatt should always have the metal strips looking up and never touching downs for safety purpose and snaking the heat tape will give you one side up (correctly done) and one side down (not correctly and possibly dangerous).
Alberto

That is what the guy told me who i got the heat tape from.

AM Gecko
01-03-2006, 02:11 AM
and i couldnt use the heat cable because the room the rack is in isnt warm enough to use heat cable--so i needed to use flexwatt to get the desired temps

How cold is that room, lol, I think heat cables would have done the job just right but you know your stuff, if that is accurate then you have done the right thing in my opinion, but be carefull with that heat tape.
Alberto

bugman426
01-03-2006, 02:12 AM
and i couldnt use the heat cable because the room the rack is in isnt warm enough to use heat cable--so i needed to use flexwatt to get the desired temps

How cold is that room, lol, I think heat cables would have done the job just right but you know your stuff, if that is accurate then you have done the right thing in my opinion, but be carefull with that heat tape.
Alberto

It was originally going to go in my basement, until i realized in the winter my basement is 65 degrees--heat cable wouldnt be able to raise the temps 30 degrees

Now the rack is in my room where it is much warmer, so i probably could have gotten away with heat cable, but didnt know that at the time of purchase

AM Gecko
01-03-2006, 02:19 AM
It was originally going to go in my basement, until i realized in the winter my basement is 65 degrees--heat cable wouldnt be able to raise the temps 30 degrees

I am not sure this is complitely accurate, I keep mine in the basement, you know, and normally in the winter the room temps there are in the high 60s and the heat cable brings the temps to the hot spot to 94-95* with a PBS 1000 and I do not know if it could go higer then that. Anyway, what is done is done, just get alluminum tape and set them down, I am sure the next one you will buy you will think about the cable, :wink:
Alberto
PS: going to sleep now, later boys, :lol:

bugman426
01-03-2006, 02:22 AM
It was originally going to go in my basement, until i realized in the winter my basement is 65 degrees--heat cable wouldnt be able to raise the temps 30 degrees

I am not sure this is complitely accurate, I keep mine in the basement, you know, and normally in the winter the room temps there are in the high 60s and the heat cable brings the temps to the hot spot to 94-95* with a PBS 1000 and I do not know if it could go higer then that. Anyway, what is done is done, just get alluminum tape and set them down, I am sure the next one you will buy you will think about the cable, :wink:
Alberto
PS: going to sleep now, later boys, :lol:

you might be right, but i figure better safe than sorry...

with my luck the heat cable wouldnt be good enough :lol:

and yes, if im lucky enough to get another rack, ill probably go with the heat cable

thanks again guys

Riverside Reptiles
01-03-2006, 11:54 AM
In any case, since you're using the flexwatt, the answer to your question is yes, just put the foil tape right over the flexwatt. Like in Alberto's picture...one strip of tape down each side of the flexwatt. It'll work great and you won't need to have any tape on the outside of the rack.

stevegeckosetc
01-04-2006, 08:10 PM
I would recommend covering the flexwatt completely with foil tape. Over time the sliding of the boxes over the flexwatt will wear the plastic covering away, and eventually you will have the box in direct contact with live current. A definite fire hazard. It will also be a lot easier to to keep dirt and sand out of the groove.

I bought several AP racks with heat cables last year, and wasn't too happy with it. I really like Flexwatt and have used it for years. I felt the 1 inch wide heat source wasn't enough, compared with the 4 inch or 3 inch Flexwatt I use on my other racks. So I worked with Mark from AP to design a model that will work with Flexwatt. I'm really happy with how the Flewatt model came out. The idea for the slot was born when I asked for them to make a recess in the sidewall where you could put the connectors. Apparently that wouldn't work, so they made them with the slot on the side. My old racks have the connectors fully inside the rack, and I am still setting these AP racks up the same way. My racks are packed side by side, so having the connectors outside the rack isn't an option.

Steve Sykes
Geckos Etc. Herpetoculture
www.geckosetc.com

bugman426
01-04-2006, 08:21 PM
so you have the connectors fully in the AP rack?

Id like to see how that works if im not reading your post wrong

stevegeckosetc
01-04-2006, 08:59 PM
Here are two photos. This isn't an easy thing to photograph with all the white plastic and reflective foil tape!

The flexwatt is in the groove, and it makes a 90 degree turn at the sidewall. I cut the hole in the back for the cord.

http://www.geckosetc.com/images/avail/Available%20Pictures/Flexwatt1_600.jpg

http://www.geckosetc.com/images/avail/Available%20Pictures/flexwatt2_600.jpg

I have the entire groove covered with Flexwatt, and I used foil tape to seal up the Flexwatt groove on the sidewall. I also filled the Flexwatt connector with silicone caulk to seal it up. I had one malfunction and spark up on me years ago, so now all my connectors are sealed with caulk. The connector is attached to the sidewall with caulk as well. My goal was to totally seal the flexwatt in the groove. I sterilize all my racks once a year, and I need it all sealed off so I can take the rack outside and wash it with the hose.