Which rack for babies?

Hey guys,

I can’t wait for my first breeding season, I’ve been waiting for this for a long time. As I get ready, one thing I don’t have yet is a rack for all the babies. Hopefully it’s a successful breed!! What does everyone recommend? I will probably try breeding two females for this first year, maybe one though just to try it for my first year.

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That decision will have several questions you’ll need to answer to come to.

Long answer short… well sort of short, I’m a big fan of the Reptile Basics VE6 racks for neonates. I use a VE6 with 2 VE2 racks stacked ontop for 10 levels. The 3 different tub sizes make this rack very versatile. I build my own cb70 racks for when they outgrow the VE6.

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Thank you for the input, I like the option to have some room for hold backs. What do you use to control it? Are the 4” panels that they come with good?

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The heating is with heat tape. It does a good job. The basement my reptiles are in is about 68 to 72 degrees and i have the racks set to 94 degrees. It gives the tubs a good hotspot and gradient.

I use a VE200 thermostat to control the rack.

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Good to know, thanks again. I may end up going that route. I use ink bird thermostats on all of my other enclosures and they usually work great.

I’d probably go with a combination of the 11s and 23s for the tubs. The 8s just seem tiny.

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The 8s are pretty small, they work well for only the smallest boa neonates. I still use them when they’re first born, i do switch up to the others quickly though.

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If you like the Inkbirds ones, I tried their Wifi one with 2 outlets and probes, and it allows much more granular control, down to the 10th of a degree F. Plus it gives you the ability to provide a range, so a temp for when to kick on and turn off.

It’s still not pulse-proportional but it’s dang consistent. Especially compared to the single, set a target temp type ones. Only 35 bucks on Amazon in the US.

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That’s exactly what I’m using on my tanks so far. Some day I’ll start using pulse proportional but those have been so consistent for me. I have them for my savannah monitor, tegus, and snakes.

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With the VE200 can you set night temps?

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With an external attachment yes you can set night temperatures.

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I am really happy see this come up. I have begun my research for neo boa racks. I think in the next 3-5 years, my collection is going to increase by 4 or 5 boas.

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How does everyone manage the variance in heat between the different heights of the tubs? I’ve heard the higher tubs get hotter and the bottom tubs get cooler. Would you have to run individual heat tape installments for every row or every two rows? With multiple temp managements, like a HerpStat 6, etc?

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With a single probe I install around the middle of the rack and adjust it so the highest temperatures in any of the tubs (measured with a heat gun) does not exceed 92 or so. Some levels may not reach the desired hot spot temperature around 90 but the important thing is that no levels are overheating.

With a multi probe thermostat I install one probe to control the upper and another to control the lower. Your results will vary depending on conditions/setup regarding which levels to set the probes up on. Some people have a major difference in the very bottom row and will have a probe only for the lowest row while others may control the lower 3rd with one probe and the upper 2/3rds with another.

A multi probe setup is the ideal way to go but a single can work just fine as well.

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Thank you for the explanation, I was worried about the same thing. I have a DIY rack for my big guys and I have different probes for every two racks but the bins are 14” high. I read that some people like to put less tape on the top racks to help balance the system but this seems incredibly complicated to get balanced.

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I made this 4 foot wide rack system so it would have a lots of air flow around it and it’s on wheel so you can move it around when you need to. I used a wire shelving system and the Sterilite 15 qt. tub # 1754 for baby boas and the Sterilite 74 qt. tub # 1969 for sub adults and boas about 6 feet long and less than 12 to 15 lbs. The 1754 tub measures 17 inches x 11 inches x 6 - 3/8 inches and the 1969 tub measures 44 inches x 19 - 3/4 inches x 6 - 3/8 inches. I also used 4 inch flexwatt along the back of each shelf to heat the tubs.

The heat tape is mounted on 1/4 inch masonite with aluminum tape. The electrical wires are solder, silicone caulk and electrical taped in place on the flexwatt. So there is no wires or flexwatt tape touching the metal rack. This way there is no way for you or the snakes to get shocked. The masonite also helps the tubs slide out easer when you want to open them.

Set up like this picture cost me about $350 with 4 inch X 44 inch flexwatt on each shelf. I had to buy 2 wire shelving set ups to make this one. The shelving cost around $80.00 each at Sam’s club.

I also have this ARS rack and plan on getting the second one soon.

I do have two old Freedom Breeder racks I still use. But they have the old wire grating between the tubs and it like a cheese grater to any snake nose that trys to get out. I believe the new FB rack are made different now so this doesn’t happen now. I don’t have any pictures of just the FB rack.



Take care
Tom

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Any advantages or benefits to the ARS/Freedom Breeder racks to the traditional PVC racks? The price difference is crazy.

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I was wondering the same thing. ARS looks very similar to Freedom Breeder but a lot cheaper, even still it’s incredibly more than the PVC style. Maybe use PVC for the smaller snakes but once they reach adulthood there aren’t many options.

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In my opinon they will last longer. My FB racks are 20+ years old. The tub is very sturdy and clean up nicely. You can remove them easily from the rack for cleaning. As they only slide on a metal track. They do not lock in place. But when fully closed I have not had any boa’s escape. For the nose rub problem I just use a very thin plastic sheet that I slide between the tub and the grating.

The ARS one I got last year but I do like it very much. The ARS tub material is thinner than the tubs in the FB. But I have had no problem with it yet. I keep my 15 to 30 lbs boas in it. It’s nice the drawers roll out very easily with the ball bearing glides. The tubs fully extended out for easy cleaning or feeding. They don’t have a lock on the tubs but when the glides are fully closed there is a slight bump that keeps them from rolling open it’s kinda like a lock.

Both are very nice racks can’t go wrong with either of them. The ARS factor/ store is only 3 hours from me so it cheap for me to buy them than the FB rack.

Just remember you do get what you pay for when buying cheap caging.

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Do you use the Christmas tree tubs or whatever for adult boas? I work with ball pythons too which doing racks for them is a lot simpler but with boas I always feel like having more height kind of like how Brian Boas set up, makes more sense.

Thanks for the solid explanation and your experience! I‘ve got a lot to think about.