DIY Hood - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-03-2008, 02:29 PM Thread Starter
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DIY Hood

Deciding wether to builb or buy. I love the light output but not the aesthetics of my current light:

2 15 watt T-8 FL 5000k
1 70 watt MH HQI 8000k

Everything looks all nice but the fixture itself. I've stared to contemplate getting a 4x24 TEK fixture as they look beautiful and are proven. I would love to build one out of wood but due to not having the table saw and mitre saw and router needed to make what I want I may give up on this one and buy a light.

What would you all do?

Craig
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-03-2008, 02:48 PM
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BUILD ONE! and then post the build process so that people like you in the future can benefit from it.

Just watched a couple of woodworking shows that highlighted mortise and tennon joinery. I am thinking about making my next stand/canopy for a dart frog vivarium using this process.

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-03-2008, 04:29 PM Thread Starter
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Well this is going to be a full blown DIY setup I'm going to make it out of 22ga Weldable steel. Not sure if I will paint the inside of it flat white which will make a great reflector or try and find some good mylar and coat it. Stay tuned for updates....
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-03-2008, 04:31 PM
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"not having the table saw and mitre saw and router"

While it is possible to make a nice DIY canopy without the aid of the listed tools it is not probable for the first timer. Back in the day I built an aquarium stand/hood with only a circular saw and alot of sand paper. Looked like a 4-H project no offense intended to 4-H projects.

Good luck
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-03-2008, 04:33 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YankyTexan View Post
"not having the table saw and mitre saw and router"

While it is possible to make a nice DIY canopy without the aid of the listed tools it is not probable for the first timer. Back in the day I built an aquarium stand/hood with only a circular saw and alot of sand paper. Looked like a 4-H project no offense intended to 4-H projects.

Good luck
That's why I kicked the wood idea out and am going with 22ga steel, just got back with $110 of tools and steel/ aluminum parts

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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-03-2008, 06:45 PM Thread Starter
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well, time to go get a new dremel as mine just caught on fire after 10 years

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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-03-2008, 08:47 PM
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well, time to go get a new dremel as mine just caught on fire after 10 years

Craig
I hear ya man. The chuck wore out on mine and I tore it apart trying to get a bit out. Had to buy a new one too. I can't live without my Dremel.

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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-04-2008, 02:17 AM Thread Starter
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Update, pics will come later. I'm on my 3rd Dremel as the one I picked up earlier a Dremel 400 XRP the top of the line one lasted all of 20 minutes before it went up in smoke . I went back and exchanged it for the Dremel 100 single speed so we will see how it holds up. The ends are done just need to make the top and side, which will be made of 1 24x24 26ga steel. I wanted to use 22 like I did on the side so we will see how this holds up. I've got to get ahold of the Father inlaw as he is a sider and see if I can use his break for the bends as using wood and a hammer just doesn't make nice bends where I need them. I am also making the thing 24" long a bit longer then I want but this way I don't have to cut 1" off of it.

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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-05-2008, 12:16 AM Thread Starter
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Update with some pics... If you have questions ask most of it is self explanitory. I ended up bending this by hand so it is alright. I will hammer it out some more after it is all put together. I wll be using a Hyco fitting to run the wire out of the light to the power center. It is 24" long so I should have great coverage of the tank. I will be painting the inside with a flat white enamel maybe a car paint as it should adhere to metal better, I will also be priming it first. The outside will be sprayed in black probably gloss. Let me know what you think.

















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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-05-2008, 01:40 AM
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nice! Thumbs up! How did you make the bends though?

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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-05-2008, 02:18 AM Thread Starter
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nice! Thumbs up! How did you make the bends though?
For the larger bends I used a 3' Crick level ran across the metal and bent it into shape with my hands starting in the midle and working out test fiting the pieces as I went. For the smaller bends 1" or less I havea pair of vice grips that has a 3" flat blade on both sides for bending metal.

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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-05-2008, 02:30 AM
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Nice job!

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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-05-2008, 03:00 AM
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It looks darn good for bending by hand.
I'll be making my canopy out of aluminum (using a brake) for my 75. I'll have to take pics & post them along with the stand I'm building.
Check out a sign shop for a material called light enhancement film. It's made by 3M & will reflect a lot more light than white paint. It's has an adhesive backing & will stick to the metal without any problem. That's what I plan on using on mine. I also plan to paint mine matte black. Less likely to show any imperfections, finger prints, etc. Keep up the good work.

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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-05-2008, 11:53 PM Thread Starter
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More pics, its almost complete. Tomorrow I will pick up some epoxy after work and epoxy a few things prior to painting. I also need to grab some sand paper white paint and black paint. I'm going to paint the whole thing white with a few (5-6 ) coats of white and then after it is good and dry I will paint the outside black. I will be epxoying in my Heyco fitting as the hole is slightly too big just covers if set just right, but it was the closest hole saw I had. Enjoy.



















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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-06-2008, 03:25 AM
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That is REALLY NICE!

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