20 Gallon DIY Canopy/Lighting - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-26-2008, 07:53 AM Thread Starter
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20 Gallon DIY Canopy/Lighting

Hey guys,

I have been looking around for DIY canopies on here and have gathered a general idea of what i want to do. So I just wanted to let you all know that I will be posting pictures and some DIY info of what I did and what I wanted so that you may get some use out of my project.

My project is to:
-Build a canopy for a 20 gallon tank
-Custom lighting (cheap cheap cheap, you will see what i mean )
-Custom Moon Lighting (Again! Cheap!!! )

Building the Canopy:
All the tools that I am using are hand tools, except for the drill, that is electric. All the other items that I have used so far are hand tools. I started this project tonight and finished the base of the canopy. I am currently waiting for part of this to dry so I can complete the top half of the framing. Once the framing is done all I have to do is run down to Lowes and get some wood for the outside and I'm done! So nice to do a small scale project. In a few months, I will be doing this project on a much larger scale for my 75 gallon tank. I have to wait for the lighting I am buying for that though, going to have 4 t5's running through that baby. This project will only have 2 "energy savings" light bulbs, ya know, the spiral bulbs.

Custom Lighting:
So the lights, I already have but if you were to buy them, each one of these lights is under ten dollars and may be closer to five, i just can remember. The lights are work clamp lights and you can find them at any hardware store, usually with extension cords and such. They have a reflective hood around the lights and they take normal light bulbs, or in my case, energy saving light bulbs. Not sure if I am going to leave the hood on or build a reflector for the two, it would probably be better to have them both under one reflector instead of two.

Custom Moon Lighting:
I can't remember how much these cost but you can buy a 3 pack for about five dollars or so. LED night lights. The reason I like these is because when it is dark they turn on! You do not need any timers or anything extra for these lights. You can just plug them in as is but I want to try messing with a reflector to see what kind of results i will get. I will probably only use one or two reflectors.

This project will be completed fairly quick because there just isn't a whole lot to it. The lighting may take me into next week but I'm assuming all the woodwork will be done by tomorrow, since I am off . If you have any questions please ask, I will post the cost for materials, but some things I already had so ill make a rough estimate . I will not include hardware costs such as nails, glue, or screws. Thanks for checking this out!



Last edited by cojo0667; 08-26-2008 at 07:54 AM. Reason: title
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-26-2008, 08:32 AM Thread Starter
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Just gluing some wood here, this is the bottom. The wood is tall enough to cover the siding on the fish tank. The two horizontal boards that are screwed to the vertical boards are to hold the tank up. I think these two will be enough. The whole front will open up on hinges so that is why there is no front on the base.

Aight, be back later! Good night all!

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-26-2008, 06:59 PM
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Can't wait to see how this goes, My boyfriend and I are going to be making our own 20gH hood soon, So we're trying to collect info so we don't make any mistakes =P.

Eager to watch you continue .
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-27-2008, 05:03 AM Thread Starter
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Update on the project:

Entire frame is done. I put the top on the tank, I am using higher quality wood than most people probably would for the project, so my costs may be higher than yours. I am not doing a DIY necessarily to save money but instead because I enjoy building things.

I found something very interesting that I am going to use for a reflector for the lighting. The solution is reflective foil tape!!! I was excited, looks like it will work pretty well. I will post pictures later, maybe tomorrow.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-07-2008, 07:28 AM Thread Starter
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Sorry guys! Been really busy lately. had a garage sale today and have been putting sprinklers in our back yard. Been a huge pain!


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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 02:12 AM Thread Starter
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Hey Guys,

These are the photos of my project. Ask any questions if you want. I was finally able to finish!

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 04:52 AM
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is that tin-foil?

the best democracy money can buy
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 07:26 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by youareafever View Post
is that tin-foil?

No, its actually reflective metal tape. It is used in duct work. I like it, works pretty well. Really good for my little night light.

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canopy, diy

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