My DIY canopy or hood - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-07-2007, 03:13 PM Thread Starter
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My DIY canopy or hood

I am about ready for fish (finally). First I need a canopy for my 75g. It had to do several things in this order.
1) keep my wife's cat from drowning himself (MOST IMPORTANT!)
2) look nice - be something more than a 2x4 box framed with plywood
3) be functional - keep fish in, well ventilated, hold my lights

Here's what I came up with. Sorry the pics are grainy, I used my phone camera.

First, I made a rectangle minus 1 side with 1x4 that measure the exact measurements of the top of my tank.


Then I cut 1x6 to go around the 1x4 and used 1x2 to make the back cross brace. The cross brace in the back leaves enough of a gap for all my hoses and cords to run out the back. The 1x6 is resting on the ground, the 1x4 is half an inch fromt he floor, the result is a 1/2 inch lip that goes around the top of the tank. The lip will prevent it sliding off when the cat jumps on top. I painted it black to match my stand and furniture.




I used half inch lip because that made the gap at the top exactly the height of a 1x2 which yielded the final product. I made two slotted platforms out of 1x2. Both sections just lift in and out. You can't really see the lip well in any of the shots.



I used an AH supply 2x55w kit, you can see how it fits in here. I put the ballast in the back. I designed the hood like an arbor of sort so it would ventilate well. In this pic you can see how the two platforms lift in and out. They aren't held in place by hinges or anything (KISS).


Here is the finished setup on top of the tank.



Lemme know if anything is unclear. I'm still undecided on if I want to use glass over everything, just the back, or not at all. I'm leaning more towards not at all or just the back. Any thoughts?
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-07-2007, 04:53 PM
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Nice job! It seems both simple and effective.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-08-2007, 12:35 PM
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Looks good. A few thoughts on the glass thing ...

If you DO use it, your tank will be HOT. I noticed there aren't any fans built into the hood, so that translates into a lot of heat going into the tank, which would be trapped by the glass.

If you DON'T use glass, the evaporation rate will be much, much faster. Not that big of a deal, esp. if you are doing a weekly or biweekly water change.

Nice work!

-Ernie


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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-15-2007, 07:01 AM
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Ohhh... I actually might try something like this. Looks pretty simple and nice! Although I think I'd skip on the handle bars and use the slits to pick it up.

Eh, I was wondering... Do most people run their canister filters on the side or the back? I'm gonna have to take that into consideration when I build it.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-15-2007, 07:14 AM
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I have one thought:

Consider the heat issue. The only thing that I see that could cause the heat to spike is the ballast being that close to the water. If you were to mount it on the back of the canopy, all of the heat would be away from the water in the tank.

Just something to consider.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-15-2007, 12:11 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BiscuitSlayer View Post
I have one thought:

Consider the heat issue. The only thing that I see that could cause the heat to spike is the ballast being that close to the water. If you were to mount it on the back of the canopy, all of the heat would be away from the water in the tank.

Just something to consider.
Thanks for the input guys!

ahh. Very nice. Thats a good idea and can be easily done I initially had the ballast in the stand, but that was a pain when taking off the hood.

I'm going to keep discus in the future and will keep the tank at about 82-84 so the heat might not be an issue I want to avoid.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-15-2007, 12:32 PM
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That looks very nice for a simple design! Just shows what can be done with off the rack components with a bit of thought and ingenuity .

Your wife's kitty must be on the small side . I trained our two boys that jumping on the aquarium is not an option as I don't want 40 pounds (between the two of them) worth of cat taking it into their heads to launch themselves from that platform.

Sláinte!
Cindy



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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-23-2007, 06:33 AM
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this looks great! i got all the materials and ready to go, just have one question. i saw that you just used little L bracket for the inner frame. how did you get the outside frame secured to the inside? ill be staining it so i dont want any screws or nails to be visible. i was thinking of pre-drilling small holes from inside and putting small screws + wood glue to hold em. what do you think ?
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-23-2007, 01:08 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AudrEEz View Post
this looks great! i got all the materials and ready to go, just have one question. i saw that you just used little L bracket for the inner frame. how did you get the outside frame secured to the inside? ill be staining it so i dont want any screws or nails to be visible. i was thinking of pre-drilling small holes from inside and putting small screws + wood glue to hold em. what do you think ?
The L brackets were just to add stability to the small piece in the back. It also has screws on each end that I counter sunk so I could attach the outside.

I secured the outside with screws and wood glue. You have two options: 1) counter sink the screw and putty over them. 2) put the screw on the inside so you don't see them. I used miter cuts on the outside part and put the screw on the inside part.

Let me know if you need better pictures of anything. Something I might suggest is reinforcing the top somehow. Mine has just the slightest sag to it already. I'm not real sure how I'm going to do it
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