90 Gallon Custom - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 01:49 AM Thread Starter
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90 Gallon Custom

It's been a while since I tore down my 5ft planted. I always had intentions of doing another build but life got in the way and I have been slowly turning my plans into reality.

I enjoy documenting the progress of each build so I can easily see the tanks progression and have decided to play a little catch up.

Spring 2015

It started with a custom 48"x24"x18" rimless low iron tank ordered from Krakens Reef. It was a long time coming and got rejected by customs the first time because of wood shipping material.




Very impressed with the craftsmanship.



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post #2 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 01:50 AM Thread Starter
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November 2015

The start of the DIY stand

1x pine, using a biscuit jointer. Zero nails or screws will be used.



December 2015

Initial frame comming together, top is 1x6 and rest is 1x4.





January 2016 frame complete



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post #3 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 01:51 AM Thread Starter
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September 2016
Bottom and top glued on

Outer part of the stand is made of 3/4" MDO.







Ripping an angle used to open the top of the doors. Having a right tilt table saw made it a challenge to do this safely without binding. Creating a sacrificial fence to bury the blade in and create an opening for the off cut worked very well.





Making a face frame without any joints. I just used a jigsaw with a straight edge for the final cut to get 90 degree corners.



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post #4 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 01:52 AM Thread Starter
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I chose soss hinges due to the 180 degree opening and being able to inset mount the doors. I looked for an euro hinge that would mount but came up empty without adding addition support to mount them.

Instead of buying an expensive jig I set my own up using clamps and a straight edge.


This had to be done to the face frame before I attached it to the stand.


Not that bad for a cheap router and plywood edges.



Next I flush trimmed the top of the stand


Test fit of face frame and doors with hinges installed before I glued it together.
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post #5 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 01:53 AM Thread Starter
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October 2016

Glued the face frame on and mounted the doors.







Quick test fit of the 20lbs CO2 tank with reg. Pretty snug...



Nowhere near enough long clamps so anything in sight went on top during the glue up of the remaining 3 sides....I bet those blankets really helped out alot...



Success! Fairly difficult glue up since all the seams were 45 degrees to get the seamless finish.

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post #6 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 01:53 AM Thread Starter
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November 2016

Flush trimmed the top, bottom, and corners of the stand. The MDO was pretty hard on the router bits.





Got to love plywood chip out..



Easy way to drill some angled holes for a light bar across the inside of the stand.





Major construction pretty much done aside from a few openings.





January 2017

Hole on the back for power cords, didn't take any pictures of the large side hole for plumbing.





Did I mention the cheap router..one bit wasn't so flush cut as it should be. Probably almost a 1/8" more than flush so it got filled in with Bondo.



Soss hinges don't have self closing (that fit at least) so I used rare earth magnets.





Needed more attraction so stepped it up a bunch and added some soft close bumpers.

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post #7 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 01:54 AM Thread Starter
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The stand sat in the garage for over a year while I procrastinated over finishing it. Between work and winter weather I always seemed to miss my window to paint. I did get the bondo work done to all the seams and exposed plywood edges to seal them up.

April 2018

Tried a black limo tint for the background, went on very nice and was initially happy.









This is my first time spraying a finish and probably why it took me so long to pull the trigger.

I took apart my Sfiligoi stealth t5 to upgrade the paint as well.




Cheap $10 Harbour Freight paint gun to learn on and 3 coats of Cover Stain.



Once the primer was on I found some cracks from the wood warping a tiny bit (was left in a garage after all). Fixed with some baking soda grinded into the crack and then flowed in some thin crazy glue followed by another sanding.



So far so good


Better look at the plumbing access.
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post #8 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 01:55 AM Thread Starter
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May 2018

I decided to test the black limo tint with a light overhead. The light fixture I'm using is the same size as the tank so there will be over spill.


Not impressed with the limo tint anymore...


So it had to go


Replaced it with black vinyl.


Much better


June 2018

Makeshift paint setup


Top coat


That furniture dolly was worth it's weight in gold..




Wet sanding between coats.


3 Coats later




All done and moved inside, I couldn't be happier.


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post #9 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 01:55 AM Thread Starter
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July 2018

A better look at the interior lights. There is a sensor on the right door that makes the lights come on when you open the door and go off when you close it.










Standard RGB light strip, so pick a colour.


Yoga mat for under the tank


Tank and stand together


All caught up now so the updates will roll in slowly from here on.
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post #10 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 01:56 AM Thread Starter
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RKL is mounted.


Plumbing almost finished, just need to glue a couple joints. Going with a Herbie drain but is designed to make it Bean Animal very easily if I need to.




Waiting on some SCS 1200 silicone in clear to get in stock so I can finish the sump off and seal the bottom of the stand to ensure its water tight. After that I will water test.
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post #11 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-24-2018, 01:51 AM Thread Starter
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Got the light finished and mounted. I needed a new hanging kit since the old wires were rusted. The wires that attach to the light in the ATI kit I'm using ended up being to short so I had to make my own.

How the cable stop starts out


How it ends up with a little trimming and sanding.


A shot showing how Sfiligoi attaches the cables. Just a slot for a washer to slide down.


Holds so far, I was hoping to find a stud but no luck. I didn't want an ugly washer at the ceiling which is required when using the toggle bolts so I used snap toggles. Very similar but allowed a slightly smaller hole so no washer required.










I'm happy with how the light turned out, I am still undecided if I want to rewire what 4 bulbs are on each power cord. They currently alternate dual bulb sets but I might make the centre 4 on one cord and the outer 4 on another. I will mostly only use 4 bulbs with a short burst of 8.
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post #12 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-24-2018, 02:56 AM
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post #13 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-24-2018, 04:37 AM
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Great job.
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post #14 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-24-2018, 02:29 PM
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What a great build. You really took the time to get things done the right way. Now hurry and get this planted!
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post #15 of 179 (permalink) Old 08-25-2018, 03:12 AM
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WOW... wow wow

Aqueon 120 gallon community (planted)
ADA 120p - 65 gallon community (planted)
Eclipse system II tall - 30 gallon - mixed community (non planted)
AGA 20 gallon - lake Tanganyika shell dwellers (semi planted)
6.6 gallon nano planted red cherry shrimp (planted)
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