2x4 basics aquarium stand - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-06-2014, 05:22 PM Thread Starter
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2x4 basics aquarium stand

I'm looking for a simple stand design for my 60G acrylic aquarium. I came across this 2X4 basic workbench kit that looks like I could use it for a functional although not particularly attractive aquarium stand. They claim it supports 1000lbs per shelf. I was wondering if anyone has tried using these to make an aquarium stand?
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-06-2014, 06:07 PM
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The actual loading capacity is going to be dependent on what size "workbench" you end up fabricating with that kit. The bigger you go, the longer your spans are going to be, and the less capacity you'll have.

Building a custom frame is easy. Good rule of thumb for aquarium stands is to keep all your spans no longer than 2'. Also, you want to use compressive loading. I've seen a scary number of stands built that rely on the sheer strength of the fasteners (generally screws) used. Bascially, you want the weight of the tank distributed DOWN to the floor, and never sideways.

Where things can get complicated is if you want your stand to look nice. Then you have to start looking into skins (panels, plywood), trim, stains, paint, etc. It is what you make of it, though.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-06-2014, 06:11 PM
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This is what I used on my 40g B and 15g, its also what I intend to use for my 120g (with more center bracing). Really sturdy and easy to cover with sheets or wood panels. I used 1x2's also, and full 3lbs box of screws on my 40g. The 40g is wrapped with a sheet I had kicking around, the 15g stand is in the raw atm. But I plan to use house siding on my 120g stand and have them attached with magnets.

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Last edited by TankFreak420; 11-06-2014 at 06:15 PM. Reason: more info
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-06-2014, 06:22 PM
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I used that basic stand frame in the above video for my 150G. I did a partial skin to help against sheering, but I had it filled when it was just the frame and it was quite solid.

For an acrylic, you'll want to sheet the top with plywood to fully support the bottom of the tank. You might choose to use an extra 2x span on the top under that plywood as well.

Honestly, I think that stand design using 2x4s would be complete overkill for a 60G and would consider downsizing to 2x3s and save some $$.

And then one day when you decide you want something nice to look at, skin it!

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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-07-2014, 12:12 AM
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Same here. I use the exact same construction with the stands I build. Just modify as necessary based on length. Check out the link in my sig. I used this design for (2) 8ft stands and (1) 6ft stand. Simple to build, very solid and it works. Its probably the most common diy stand design on the web. Overbuilding a stand for sound support is just a piece of mind. I am confident enough to mount a small car on top of this stand design (Don't try this at home kids).

Never allow or depend on fasteners to carry the load of the tank. Distribute the weight to uprights whether it be wood or metal. The strength is in the uprights that are supported by the floor, not the fasteners. Now some manage to get away with depending on fasteners, I wouldn't recommend it. It's possible that sooner or later, it could give way with age. With the basic design mentioned above, I bet you could assemble this stand without screwing the legs together and allow the sheer weight of the tank to support the tank platform via the uprights. The transferring weight will compress the stand and keep it in place for the most part once the weight is settled. Try that with a design that does not use uprights supporting the tank's platform and is held up by screws (Don't try this either) its just theory.
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Last edited by flight50; 11-07-2014 at 12:24 AM. Reason: -
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