I need to build a stand, but dont know where to start? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-10-2011, 03:42 PM Thread Starter
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I need to build a stand, but dont know where to start?

Let me start by saying that I am not handy in the slightest. I cant use power tools, and screw drivers are still sort of a mystery to me. That being said I do have access to an almost limitless supply of tools and the like. I browsed around the web and found out that all the people who build their own fish tanks are really handy. I got a 26 gallon bowfront as a gift. It was nice, I wanted one. I hadnt bought one because of all the additional costs. Halfway through figuring out what fish I wanted I also realised that a bubbling barrel and some silk plants just wasnt going to work for me. So naturally my costs bumped up. Fine, I can deal with that. I'm not springing for a new light system, just upgrading the bulbs as much as possible. Trying to keep costs down. Halfway through I realised, I dont have a stand. And I refuse to pay the $150 they have at the store, that things could barely hold me up let alone the tank. I literally cannot do anything beside cut, screw, glue, and nail the wood. And by cut I mean cut in a straight line.And I cant spend more than $40 dollars total. Doors are not important to me. I dont have anything to hide. All that will be there is some fish food, an air pump, and maybe a bottle of fertz and some prime. No special equipment. I would however like it to have a back and sides. If thats as simple as staining some plywood and nailing to to some supports, I'm all good. So, a stand that can support the weight of my tank. Has sides. And one shelf (a piece of plywood perhaps?) that can hold the food and stuff. Any ideas how to do this? Because I have no clue. I saw a cinder block method that looks ok, and I could achieve it easily. But the idea of stacking 6 cinder block in my room, and then adding a filled tank on top sort of terrifies me. I feel as though my floor would give and I would fall into the first floor. http://saltaquarium.about.com/od/diy...yaqstand_2.htm . The dimensions are 24"Lx15"Wx21"H. And i want it about three feet off the floor. I'm pretty good with the whole right size thing. Its how to fit the pieces together and make sure there is enough support. Or if you think I should just go for the cinderblock method, and assure me that the combined weight wont destroy my house, let me know. Apparently its pretty sturdy. "As long as you arent playing tackle football near it". Thats what the site said. And it would be in a corner of my bedroom. Specifically in a corner no one goes near. Its next to the closet, plus everything else in my room is kinda focused on the opposite side.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-10-2011, 05:36 PM
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Here is the simplist way to make a stand using straight cuts, some glue and some screws.
Check the link The stand uses 2x4's which are really cheap, and It will look way better then cinder blocks. And its super easy to add plywood later if you want to this style stand.


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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-10-2011, 05:50 PM
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I have made several stands like this:



Just use Yellow Carpenters Wood Glue and nails to hold it together, and it is extremely strong. One sheet of 3/4 plywood is enough material. Cut out only the first three parts. Assemble those, then measure for the other parts and cut to fit. Use a square to keep the corners square as you nail them together. 3/4 plywood is less than 3/4 thick.

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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-10-2011, 06:19 PM
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Hoppy's design is a good idea and will work great.

However I want to emphasize how VERY critical that plywood back is, in the top right image.


This piece of plywood is exactly where you will get 90% of the racking strength (what will keep the stand from flopping sideways and falling apart if it's bumped hard, with lots of water weight on it).

Follow Hoppy's design, especially on the 3/4" thickness for the plywood. Decent plywood around my area is $50 a sheet at Lowes. I can find it cheaper (and better quality) at cabinet shop suppliers and lumber wholesalers, but the average person will do just fine with Lowes stuff.


FWIW you can actually build a very cool looking stand buy purchasing the decorative bricks, stacking them right, and putting a slab of plywood across the top. I've seen several that were done quite nicely.


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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-10-2011, 06:47 PM
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The trick to making this design so everything fits, is to cut boards that need to be the same length for one board that is twice the width - cut it in half and you have two boards of identical length. So, cut the two sides this way. Cut the big back and the small front board as one piece, then separate off the small front board. Also, lots of sanding can correct a lot of problems!

Hoppy
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-10-2011, 10:42 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you all so much. This has been so helpful you have no idea. I saw some really nice stones the same size of a cinderblock that would look great. But after seeing that design with the plywood, and the 2x4 design I have some serious thought to put into it. Both of those designs I can accomplish on my own. And if I get stuck or unsure there are some much handier people I can ask. My neighbor is a contractor and a very friendly helpful person. Thank you again. You all have been really helpful and supportive. You all answered my silly questions that my LFS wouldn't. Which is the original reason I didn't join. "Well obviously you have no idea what your doing if your asking all these questions. Just be a good boy and buy some pink gravel, a guppy, and a barrel and leave the complicated things to the people who are smart enough to understand them." Needless to say I was sort of crushed and very annoyed. I was very afraid the people on here would be the same way. I'm so happy that you all aren't. Unfortunately they are the only store that is freshwater related in my area besides petsmart. So I have to go back. Figures that we have 30 saltwater stors around me and one snobby freshwater. Ah well. Again.. Thank you all
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-11-2011, 12:37 AM
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Or measure the base of your tank carefully, decide how high you would like the tank to be and go shop at thrift stores for a sturdy end table, dresser or bedside table. If the piece is solid with no racking but the top seems thin you can always put another piece of plywood on top for more rigidity. The innards can be modified to suit.

There were enormous numbers of hideous but sturdy 6 sided end tables in thrift stores here when my daughter wanted a stand for her 10 gallon tank. Found one that wasn't too horrible and decided it was fine without even a paint job.
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