Problem With DIY Stand - The Planted Tank Forum
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 12:29 AM Thread Starter
Wannabe Guru
 
goodbytes's Avatar
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Fort Myers, Florida
Posts: 1,107
Problem With DIY Stand

I'm building a stand for a new 65 gallon aquarium I got for free from Midnighttide102 (what a righteously magnanimous dude!) and the stand dimensions are the same as for a 55 (48.5" long, 13" wide). I'm using this design as many do because I trust the way the load is transferred.
http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/sh...readid=1169964
Mine has two central legs as well.

Anyway, I've run into a common problem with the majority of things I build with 2x4s--the lumber is warped. Despite being assembled to spec and using C-clamps to ensure that all of the members are flush and straight, there is a significant wobble. I clamped it down to the workbench to make sure it was straight when I assembled the rest of it but now I am worried that this may be a serious problem. I am certain that if the warping were eliminated somehow it would sit flat and true as I assembled carefully. I assume that the 500+ lbs weight of the aquarium will press it flat and eliminate the wobble but is it possible for the upward force of the warped lumber to compromise the seals of the aquarium?
goodbytes is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 12:51 AM
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Posts: 92
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodbytes View Post
I'm building a stand for a new 65 gallon aquarium I got for free from Midnighttide102 (what a righteously magnanimous dude!) and the stand dimensions are the same as for a 55 (48.5" long, 13" wide). I'm using this design as many do because I trust the way the load is transferred.
http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/sh...readid=1169964
Mine has two central legs as well.

Anyway, I've run into a common problem with the majority of things I build with 2x4s--the lumber is warped. Despite being assembled to spec and using C-clamps to ensure that all of the members are flush and straight, there is a significant wobble. I clamped it down to the workbench to make sure it was straight when I assembled the rest of it but now I am worried that this may be a serious problem. I am certain that if the warping were eliminated somehow it would sit flat and true as I assembled carefully. I assume that the 500+ lbs weight of the aquarium will press it flat and eliminate the wobble but is it possible for the upward force of the warped lumber to compromise the seals of the aquarium?
really 500lbs spreads out, probably won't feel like anything to the stand. That's why they get away with 1x material on the purchased stuff. I'd be more concerned that the interface of the tank and stand is uniform so the tank itself isn't under a "twisting" stress. Maybe belt sand the top and bottom? You can shim between the floor and stand no problem. Just get the stand to tank to be flat.
kabendixen is offline  
post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 01:11 AM Thread Starter
Wannabe Guru
 
goodbytes's Avatar
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Fort Myers, Florida
Posts: 1,107
Quote:
Originally Posted by kabendixen View Post
really 500lbs spreads out, probably won't feel like anything to the stand. That's why they get away with 1x material on the purchased stuff. I'd be more concerned that the interface of the tank and stand is uniform so the tank itself isn't under a "twisting" stress. Maybe belt sand the top and bottom? You can shim between the floor and stand no problem. Just get the stand to tank to be flat.
What I'm asking is if the weight of the tank will press it flat. The lumber used to build the both platform the tank sits on as well as the base platform the load transfers to is warped. If I did shim it level then the tank would definitely be under torsional stress.
goodbytes is offline  
 
post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 01:24 AM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
FewestKitten896's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Kansas
Posts: 556
Wood is strong and the shorter the piece the harder it is to flex. That wood is always going to be pressing against the weight of the tank and most likely unevenly. I ran into the same problem on a 40breeder and it was worth the extra few bucks to go get some new straight wood, take what I built apart and basically start over. Now I have piece of mind. Or like mentioned above sand the hell out of it and make it flat.

I bet I went through every piece to find enough straight boards by the way. There are straight pieces, you just have to look for them.
FewestKitten896 is offline  
post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 02:08 AM
Planted Tank Obsessed
 
PhysicsDude55's Avatar
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 339
Many people put a layer of 1/2" foam where the tank meets the stand and cover the foam up with trim. It helps even out the load.

The wood will bend a bit overtime to match the tank and floor as long as the variations are small. If there's like a 1/2", that would be a big issue. If its a 1/16" gap, I wouldn't worry about it.

DIY Enthusiast


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
PhysicsDude55 is offline  
post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 03:55 AM
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Omaha, NE
Posts: 89
Since the stand is already built this help much, but standard construction grade 2x4's are almost always as crooked as a politician. Kiln dried 2x4's which cost a little more usually come out a bit straighter, but can still have large knots or bits of bark on the edges.

When buying 2x4's, don't be afraid to go through every single board until you find ones that are straight. Nobody working at the store will complain, in fact if you mention they have the finest assortment of pretzel shaped boomerang's in town, they will almost always chuckle and help you go through the boards.

Of coarse you can also pay 15 to 20 times as much to buy premium oak boards that are laser straight and have such perfect 90 degree edges they can cut you fingers. And with the oak, always measure twice before you measure twice and then measure again before you cut once.
Bob Madoran is offline  
post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 04:35 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
GraphicGr8s's Avatar
 
PTrader: (10/100%)
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: West coast of the east coast of the USA.
Posts: 4,328
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Madoran View Post
Since the stand is already built this help much, but standard construction grade 2x4's are almost always as crooked as a politician. Kiln dried 2x4's which cost a little more usually come out a bit straighter, but can still have large knots or bits of bark on the edges.

When buying 2x4's, don't be afraid to go through every single board until you find ones that are straight. Nobody working at the store will complain, in fact if you mention they have the finest assortment of pretzel shaped boomerang's in town, they will almost always chuckle and help you go through the boards.

Of coarse you can also pay 15 to 20 times as much to buy premium oak boards that are laser straight and have such perfect 90 degree edges they can cut you fingers. And with the oak, always measure twice before you measure twice and then measure again before you cut once.
Construction grade lumber is kiln dried. It is generally a spruce. The real problem is it is quick growth wood and prone to warp, checking, cupping and twist.
If you buy solid wood oak at the BBS you will still search out straight pieces. I needed a bunch for my library and it took a while to go through for straight lumber. I've even had the problem at specialty lumber stores.Another consideration is if you are using short pieces with judicious cutting even a warped piece can be used. Example. You need two 3" pieces from a warped board. Cutting correctly will leave the warp on the burn pile. Twist is a bit harder though.

The worst thing you can do is buy the lumber and cut it without acclimating it.

Dilution is the solution for the pollution.
Quote me as saying I was misquoted.
Once you get rid of integrity the rest is a piece of cake.
Here's to our wives and sweethearts - may they never meet.
If you agreed with me we'd both be right.
GraphicGr8s is offline  
post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 10:56 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
lochaber's Avatar
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 2,317
Not much help right now, but when I'm building a stand, I generally use the kiln-dried 2x4s or 2x3s. It's slightly more expensive, but generally not that significant a difference when I total up everything for the aquarium, or even just the stand by itself.

Despite being kiln "dried", I've found some that are practically sopping wet... So I just go through until I find a couple pieces that aren't twisted, are straight, and have a grain I like.

And then I plan the pieces out to minimize how the warps and knots will affect them- I'm fine with knots on uprights, but try to keep them out of the middle of horizontals.

For the finished stand, I'd check the top using a straight edge or something. You might even be able to just eyeball it, and take down the highest corner/corners (or middle, but don't worry if the middle sags). Maybe a sander/sanding disk if it's not much, if it's a lot, a rasp or a plane to even things out. Just shim the bottom once you make sure the top is even.
lochaber is offline  
post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-11-2015, 01:37 AM
Wannabe Guru
 
flight50's Avatar
 
PTrader: (5/100%)
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: dfw
Posts: 1,402
That stand design you used is very popular, solid and is the exact one I use to make all my stands. The first thing that must be done is get straight boards. When I go shopping, I go thru every single board that I need to get what I want. I look down the length of the boards on all 4 sides. If they pass that test, I lay them flat on the ground on all sides and tap them with my foot. A solid straight board will not bounce and tap the floor. A minor echo on the floor can be either passed on or used to make legs if its still better then most pieces in the bunch. As mentioned above, shorter pieces won't have much give so a few not so perfect pieces are tolerable. If you have a Lowes and a Home Depot, I do find that Lowes does have the better wood. This is coming from a 9.5 year Depot associate. 4.5 of those years was spent in Lumber. The associates are suppose to cull the lumber daily. Some stores are better at it than others so you have to hunt for yourself.

In a nutshell, I would disassemble and replace the boards in question. Worst case, just start over with fresh boards. You will sleep much better at night knowing that when you do place your tank on the stand, that it won't give out.

Eheim Pimp #509
Finnex Club Member #31
The Fraternity of Dirt #146

Builds -
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
flight50 is offline  
post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-11-2015, 06:26 AM Thread Starter
Wannabe Guru
 
goodbytes's Avatar
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Fort Myers, Florida
Posts: 1,107
Yeah, I ripped it apart today and replaced the two twisted 48" sections that caused the discrepancy. Lucky me I had used the two twisted sections on each of the frames top and bottom so I had to tear both of them down. I went to the hardware store and looked for straight boards as suggested. The more convenient 12 footers were all bent and twisted in every way you can imagine. I must've gone through fifty boards. The higher quality 10 foot whitewood boards though were mostly straight. It is much better now but it was still off by a bit less than 1/8 of an inch so I used shims on the top section between the load bearing legs on the corner that needed to be raised. It is very close now but when I put the tank on it and filled it I shone a flashlight around the rim of the tank there was an entire corner and part of the length of the tank that I could see light underneath--not good. So I drained it and will shim out the last 1/32 of an inch on that corner.

I was trying to get away with not using plywood on the top under the tank and just putting the tank on the 2x4 frame, and idea I can no longer get behind because there's no way it'll ever be perfect. That foam idea I keep hearing about sounds good as well to be sure. What kind of foam is it and where can I get it?
goodbytes is offline  
post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-11-2015, 05:05 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
GraphicGr8s's Avatar
 
PTrader: (10/100%)
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: West coast of the east coast of the USA.
Posts: 4,328
1/32" is nothing to worry about in my experience. I've got metal stands out a bit more than that.

I wouldn't hesitate to put the stand right on the 2 x 4s. What is a mat going to do for you?

Dilution is the solution for the pollution.
Quote me as saying I was misquoted.
Once you get rid of integrity the rest is a piece of cake.
Here's to our wives and sweethearts - may they never meet.
If you agreed with me we'd both be right.
GraphicGr8s is offline  
post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-11-2015, 10:19 PM Thread Starter
Wannabe Guru
 
goodbytes's Avatar
 
PTrader: (3/100%)
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Fort Myers, Florida
Posts: 1,107
Quote:
Originally Posted by GraphicGr8s View Post
1/32" is nothing to worry about in my experience. I've got metal stands out a bit more than that.

I wouldn't hesitate to put the stand right on the 2 x 4s. What is a mat going to do for you?
You're probably right. I checked it again today with the four footer and its level from corner to corner, front to back, and side to side. Almost perfectly level I might add. I don't understand why but half of the empty tank from the center brace to the right side isn't making contact with the stand in front, back, or on the side. However, the margin is paper thin. I have to be looking dead straight at it to see the slit of light between the rim and the stand.
goodbytes is offline  
post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-11-2015, 11:34 PM
Planted Tank Enthusiast
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Florida , Port Richey
Posts: 744
Hey bro put a peice of foam under the tank and y'all be good to go
Midnighttide102 is offline  
post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-12-2015, 02:44 AM
Wannabe Guru
 
flight50's Avatar
 
PTrader: (5/100%)
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: dfw
Posts: 1,402
Although 10 or 12 foot boards may be more convenient, I would never purchase them for a build. I only use 96" or 92 5/8" boards. The shorter the board, the less warping, cupping and/or twisting. You will have a few pieces of burn off but you better your chances of getting straight pieces. As stated, 1/32" is nothing. There are many tanks that are up to an 1/8" off with few issues. More than an 1/8" and you really have to start weighing your options. Foam sheets (not the pink boards), yoga matts or equal, is widely used to help distribute weight to the frame evenly.

Eheim Pimp #509
Finnex Club Member #31
The Fraternity of Dirt #146

Builds -
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
flight50 is offline  
post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-12-2015, 08:43 PM
Wannabe Guru
 
lksdrinker's Avatar
 
PTrader: (9/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: NY; LETS GO METS
Posts: 1,916
I'm sure the boards you had were actually warped; but how positive are you that the floor where this stand is sitting is perfectly level?

As far as the foam being used between the tank and stand you can try using foam board from a craft store (foam sandwiched between posterboard basically) and/or home stores (home depot, lowes, etc) will have styrofoam insulation that can be used for this purpose. Various sizes and thicknesses but you should find something to suit your needs.

Rich's Fishes
Curator of an ever growing fishroom that currently houses 30 different tanks. Most full of at least water....some even have fish!
lksdrinker is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome