Discussion on artificial ants nests including Test Tubes, Soil Nests, Foraging Areas and Ytong Nests
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By MWells
#16514
Hi Guys.

I'm looking to start keeping ants and have access to a laser cutter. Becuase of this I am thinking of making my own ant nest similar to that of antkit. Fully acrylic.

Has anyone done this before? If so any tips or advice?
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By Leafcutter
#16515
I tried this before and it worked quite well. The only thing I'd say is to do practice on scrap acrylic first.
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By MWells
#16517
Any tips on design. I'm thinking 1cm high internally, with a vertical entrance or two (so i can laser cut the holes).

I'd like a removable lid, so hoping screws will be enough too.
By Roryf96
#16547
What size are you making the nest? If it's quite small I'd quite like to buy one off you if possible? If you make more than one that is. Would like a nest with an easily removable lid


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By andavane
#17298
MWells wrote:Any tips on design. I'm thinking 1cm high internally, with a vertical entrance or two (so i can laser cut the holes).

I'd like a removable lid, so hoping screws will be enough too.


Personally I'd plump for magnets.
Screws could be tricky. They become loose or cause cracking in the acrylic.
The right neodymium magnets will last longer than we can!
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By ManicaLuca
#17317
Some of my earliest prototypes used N52 neodymium magnets but unfortunately the force of the acrylic warping away from the humidity was far too great and was too strong for the magnets.

I then moved to polycarbonate which worked great... but you can't cut it with a laser (it just burns). So a CNC router was used.

Unfortunately this does not scale well so when AntKit started to make nests in volume, the decision was made to go with nuts, bolts and laser-cut perspex.
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By jeoff82
#17381
I think I still got that somewhere, its kind of a prototype I think. Around £10 plus couple of quid for postage. Its the smallest one I done 10cm squared.
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By jeoff82
#17386
Precision08 wrote:Nice, are cork nests more than acrylic nests?
Precision08 wrote:Nice, are cork nests more than acrylic nests?
Precision08 wrote:Nice, are cork nests more than acrylic nests?


They are usually cheaper tbh. This is something that you can link to another nest or outworld as there is no hydration system here. Basically these designs are the kinda thing I can do, how you want the nest exactly is down to yourself.
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By andavane
#18671
Re : @Here are some of the ones I make myself, most of them are made to order by people who want to buy them. So they are custom sizes, colour, depth, connectors, outworlds etc"

Very nice designs.
I am really hot on a nest with an external water chamber using a wicking system. Could you design such.
A chamber which you could simply fill and leave.

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