I was hoping to get a large going (go big or go home, eh?) and looking around at stands... MAN that's where they get ya. I was wondering if building is also cost efficient as well? I mean it seems to be, but I'm not a builder so I was curious how much is material?
That is exactly why I decided to build my own. On top of that, I found the stands in the stores to be rather unappealing for a tank to sit on and have the stand function as a piece of furnture as many of them have a very cheap looking feel to them.
My stand was considerably more expensive because of a few things
1. I overbuilt the stand which resulted in me buying at least 4 or more pieces of 2x4s. I also could have probably built the stand with smaller dimensions of wood (many of the stands out there use dimensions smaller than a 2x4s).
2. I decided to skin the stand with oak plywood and oak trim.
3. I had to purchase some equipment for me to complete the build properly (jigsaw, new circular saw, mitre saw etc). They were not purchased solely for this purpose, but I am a new home owner and fairly young, only 25, so I did not have a lot of the tools to build anything really, so they will be put to good use over the years.
4. I decided to stain and poly the stand instead of painting.
All in all, for the materials (wood, oak plywood, regular plywood, trim, stain, screws), I would say it cost me around $200-$250. This is for a stand that I know will support the weight, will look nice, and probably last at least 20+ years.
Hope this helps in your decision making process. Aside from my workbench, which was based on the blueprint for the tank stand, I have not had any woodworking experience, so it is certainly doable if you are a novice