Rimless Edge (56K)
Planted Tank Forums
Your Tanks Image Hosting *Tank Tracker * Plant Profiles Fish Profiles Planted Tank Guide Photo Gallery Articles

Go Back   The Planted Tank Forum > General Planted Tank Forums > Tank Journals


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 01-20-2015, 09:44 PM   #1
Ckent42
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Irvine
Posts: 54
Default

Rimless Edge (56K)


This is my sixth aquarium, and my best attempt at doing it right so far.



Current FTS


Fauna:
5X Blue Axelrodi Rasbora
2X Clown Killifish
1X Amano Shrimp
1X Bamboo Shrimp

Flora:



Filter:
SunSun HW-302

Heater:
Elite Submersible Preset Heater Mini, 25-Watt

Light:
DIY SMD build

Stand:
DIY Wood

CO2:
Paintball CO2

Ferts:
None Yet

Diffuser:
DIY PVC pipe inline injector


Hey everyone, this is my first tank journal, and the first time I've really had patience in the hobby. My first aquarium was an ill-fated 10 gallon vivarium 4 years ago, and since then I've tried a 2 gallon hex, a 2 gallon cube, and a 2.5 gallon saltwater tank. The saltwater tank was actually my most successful attempt, running for a year a half. However school and work really took over my life and I stopped maintaining it as well as it needed, and the corals slowly died. But this time is different. This time I took my time, made sure to do things right, and did my best. I'm going to separate the build logs for the stand, light, and diffuser into different posts, and then catch up to date with where I am now.

Bump:

Bump:

Last edited by Ckent42; 01-20-2015 at 10:53 PM.. Reason: Forgot 56k warning
Ckent42 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 01-20-2015, 10:07 PM   #2
Ckent42
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Irvine
Posts: 54
Default

So while I didn't build everything sequentially like I'm posting the logs, I'm separating them to make it simpler for me to type and for everyone to read.

The Stand:

So my vision for this tank was a beautiful rimless design, with a minimalist light design, and a simple but elegant stand. I started with a 2X4 frame,





and very quickly realized two things. First, my frame was no where near square, and therefore was unstable, and second that there would be hardly any room inside. I also didn't like how much I was going to have to spend on plywood to cover the outside, so I picked up some 3/4 inch thick pine boards from lowes and went with a different approach.





I realized that if I put the top over the two sides, I could open up the interior and hold nearly all the weight I needed too. Of course I added additional bracing with my left over 2X4's, just to be on the safe side, and I built a shelf as well.



For the door, I saw a three panel design that I really liked at lowes, and decided to replicate that, both because I enjoyed how it looked, and also because the wood panels weren't wide enough to fit vertically. So i cut one into thirds, and then carefully aligned the three boards with 2X4's to hold them together. Preferably, I would have used a single 2X4 on each side, but I didn't have any that were long enough.





I didn't feel like messing with hinges, and I also wanted to be able to completely remove the door, so I attached it using 3/4 inch round magnets that I got off amazon. To align them properly with the door and the frame, I placed the door on where I wanted it, and then drilled pilot holes with the smallest drillbit I had. This allowed me to later drill with a 3/4 inch bit and then glue the magnets in place. The ones I used are overkill, as you actually have to hold the stand in place to remove the door, even with the tank, filter, and all equipment on it.



I was a little too close to the inside edge with this one:




After that, all I had to do was stain the stand, and add an additional 2X4 across the back to provide an attachment point for the light.







Finally, I wanted to fill in the gaps in the front with black acrylic. I wanted it to fit smoothly across the front, and since I don't have a table saw I made this jig for my jigsaw:



Yep, I literally just clamped down a piece of wood the right distance away from where I was making my cut. Luckily the front boards are within 1/32 of an inch of being perfectly straight, so once I measured it out all I had to do was make a straight cut.





So the dimensions of the stand match the tank perfectly, and the interior is large enough to fit the canister filter, the co2, and other equipment that I need. I've also noticed that the door bows out slightly, so I might add another set of magnets in the middle panel in the future to prevent that from happening.
Ckent42 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-20-2015, 10:29 PM   #3
Ckent42
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Irvine
Posts: 54
Default

The next thing I built was the light for it. To keep costs down I decided to try and use SMD led's and build the entire thing myself. I'm not entirely satisfied with the results, and I may switch to cree's in the future, but it does seem to be working for now. Also, I got this idea from a reef SMD light build. I lost the link, but if you search for 2.5 SMD light build you should find it.

I started by laying out my LED's, which turned out to be pointless because I added more later in the build.



Unfortunately, I'm not great at soldering, and these lights are pretty heat sensitive. Because of this, I decided to use a 5 volt power source instead of a 12 volt one, and wire every singe LED in parallel with it's own resistor. As SMD's are actually three diodes in one case, this resulted in lots and lots of soldering.



And to make it even funner, these lights are absolutely tiny.



I used different "tools" to hold down the wires while I attached them to the light





And I tried to make it go faster by doing each task separately, but that just resulted in daunting levels of materials



So I decided to take a break and start working on the fixture. I ordered an aluminum plate and a flat aluminum bar off of amazon. I cut the bar, and then bent each half using a longboard wheel to achieve the proper curvature.







I then used sand paper to brush the arms. I also brushed the plate, because it looks a lot nicer then unbrushed. The bar on the left is brushed, and the one on the right is how it came.



So now I had to get back to the wiring part. I stripped two length of solid copper wire to use as the positive and negative leads. This wasn't a great idea, as the wire was so thick that it conducted heat well and made the soldering process frustrating.





The wire on the outside is the positive, and the one on the inside is the negative.







And finally done!!!!!



As you can see in the picture, there are 23 white 6000 k leds, 4 reds, two greens, and 4 blues. I don't know if the colors are really helping, but I do know that I should have put the colors together in clusters. You can't tell in the tank, but the reflection on the wall behind it is pretty rainbow-y.

Finally I drilled and tapped the arms and the base, and then screwed them together.









I added some acrylic sheets between the wiring and the aluminum to prevent shorts



And finally placed the wiring in the light. I then placed another piece of clear acrylic across the top, held onto the screws with nuts, which protects the lights from water.



And I forgot to take pictures, but the light just sits in two picture holding brackets on the back of the tank. It's not super stable, but it would take a pretty bad hit to knock it off.



I think the color is pretty good, and it seems pretty bright, but even with CO2 my plants have never pearled with this light.
Ckent42 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-20-2015, 10:44 PM   #4
Ckent42
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Irvine
Posts: 54
Default

So after I had built everything else, I couldn't decide which diffusion method to use. I like how ceramic diffusers look, but they aren't all that efficient. So after some research I decided to build an inline co2 injector, because I could also hide my heater in it.

This was my initial layout, but in the end I moved the heater to the bottom right, as I didn't want co2 bubbles to get trapped with it, resulting in it breaking from being out of water.





I drilled out the end cap so that my heater would fit snugly



I used a small table vise to hold the pvc for cutting



And here it is assembled, ready for gluing



The ball valve is there for easy water changes. I attached a tube to it, and when I want to change water I just open that valve to empty the tank into a bucket. Also, the heater is glued in with jb-weld, and it hasn't leaked in the two months that the tank has been running. Finally, I need to take it apart and add bio balls to the injector tube, because sometimes i can hear the filter chewing through co2 bubbles.

If you look in the upper left corner you can see the brass nozzle with the co2 tubing running into the tall pipe.



Bump: And here's just some extra pictures I took. All I have is an iPhone, so they aren't the greatest.











Ckent42 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-20-2015, 11:57 PM   #5
wrenn420
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: May 2014
Location: United States
Posts: 24
Default

Very nice job on the stand. I like to see a true DIY tank well done.
wrenn420 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-21-2015, 12:39 AM   #6
kman
Wannabe Guru
 
kman's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 1,530
Default

WOW. Incredibly well done! Great job on the stand, and even greater job on that light! I can't believe you had the patience for that much soldering. How much time did it take? I can't image a light good enough for a small tank light that would be especially expensive to buy, although you certainly wouldn't have as much DIY satisfaction from it.
kman is online now   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-23-2015, 10:54 AM   #7
Ckent42
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Irvine
Posts: 54
Default

Thanks for the kind words. I'm really unsure about the driftwood though. I feel like it takes up way too much of the tank, cutting off a lot of light, as well as just taking up space and not looking great. Especially since I would like to start growing a hc carpet in the front at some point.
Ckent42 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-23-2015, 05:53 PM   #8
SankenAquaticFoliage
Algae Grower
 
SankenAquaticFoliage's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Minnesota, USA
Posts: 36
Default

Awesome, thats all i can say. Well done!
__________________
-SankenAquaticFoliage

SankenAquaticFoliage is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-25-2015, 08:16 PM   #9
Ckent42
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Irvine
Posts: 54
Default

Well, to update, I had a bit of a tragedy last night. I did a 40-50% water change and immediately following both killifish and a rasbora died. I have no idea why, but I'm pretty bummed about it.
Ckent42 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 08:00 AM.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright Planted Tank LLC 2012