DIY Stand build question - problems? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2010, 02:45 AM Thread Starter
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DIY Stand build question - problems?

Hi,
I am looking at making a DIY stand for a tank I plan to buy. I have already made two ADA style stands for 60cm tanks (60X41X45cm, and 60X30X36cm tanks). One with 3/4" MDF and another with 3/4" plywood.

However, now I want to make a 120cm tank stand and I don;t plan to make it out of just plywood or MDF. I am worried about the weight in a earthquake zone) The problem is I haven't fully decided on which tank I want: 120X60X60cm or 120X45X45 tank. I know for a lot of you, the choice is easy, go big! Problem is, I am in a rented place, and not sure how long I will be here. Standard 120cm tank would be easier to fit in other places compared to the wider one. Weight of either is not a problem as I am in Taiwan where all buildings are made out of concrete and bricks, including floors.

So what I want to do is make the stand and then decide on the tank (Basically I have time now and space to work on the stand (Taiwan holidays coming up so I will be more free from my regular teaching schedule)) If i do it that way, I can have everything ready, order the tank and have it in a couple of weeks at the longest for custom made, and be set.

Attached is the picture of the face I plan. Problem is, if I do it that way, and make it for the 120X60X60 tank with say 2+cm clearance around that tank (the3/4" plywood skin) and then decide to get a 120X45(or55)X45 tank, will there be a structural issue. Meaning that the tank will now be sitting inside the 2X4(2X6) frame, not on it. (ofcourse I will still have a plywood top where the tank sits on and cushion mat), but weight wise the tank will be inside the edges of the 2X4 frame.

Will this be a problem?
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2010, 02:52 AM
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the tank edges needs to be supported. think if i was doing a stand that was going to be bigger then the tank i might plan on having an extra thick plywood top or just waiting to do the stand till i knew the size of the tank. the last stand i did didn't take all that long to make.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2010, 03:09 AM
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looks stout good job


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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2010, 03:21 AM
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it is nice. though it does feel a little top heavy if i push on the tank but not really problem since i don't push on the tank much
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2010, 04:22 AM
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I think I would make the decision on tank size first, not necessarily buy the tank, but decide which one I would buy. If you make the tank for the 60 cm depth tank and get the 45 cm depth, you will have too much left over stand in back for it to look good, in my opinion.

If that part doesn't bother you, just add another length-wise board and another pair of "legs" under it. That will avoid the load problem, and the extra boards will be hidden inside the skin of the stand anyway. Tanks only need to be supported around the rim, so the cross braces in the middle don't do much for you. Leaving those out would compensate for the added weight of the extra boards.

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2010, 03:05 PM Thread Starter
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First of all thanks for all the answers.

So, how close to the edge of the stand does that tank have to sit to be properly supported? I mean, with an ADA style tank, a 60X30cm tank will have a stand top of 60X30, but with many stands styles the tank isn't exactly at the edge.

So if I am using 2X4s for the stand frame, and the a piece of plywood for the stand top as a base under the tank, can the tank be in 1" from all sides (meaning it would still be on the 2X4s), but can't be in 2" from all sides? as it would be inside the 2X4s? Wouldn't the weight on the plywood top transfer the weight to the 2X4 frame?
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2010, 04:40 PM
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The tank could certainly be an inch in on all sides, and very likely even work at 2 inches in on all sides. Going beyond that could cause the plywood top to sag, leaving all of the load coming from just the outer edge of the tank, which I think might be risky. In my opinion an ADA style stand looks best when it is the same footprint as the tank, within a quarter inch or so. Of course if you want to hide the substrate from view, the stand will be a larger footprint so it can have a raised rim on top.

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-11-2010, 01:11 AM Thread Starter
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Ok, decided the the base will be 120X60 height of tank still not decided (50,55, or 60). Either way I will be making the frame like above based on these dimensions. Problems is I can't seem to find 2X4s and 2X6s here. 1x4s and 1x6s are easy to come by and quality good, so I counsidered using 2 of each to make it into 2X4s or 2X6s.

Question is this. Should the be glued and clamped together before assmeblying or just assmenble with two of them bot glued? Reason I ask is a consider the different "straightness" of boards with each usually having its own slight bowing. If gluing it might be hard to find four for the 120 lenght that will have the same "straighness". And since the will bend slightly under the weight of the tank and water, would it be better to have them act independed or together? since they will e screwed together at the ends and where the cross brace comes into play, do they need to be glue along the lenght?

Also I have heard people mention that the plywood skin should not be screwed on, but rather glued on so that the nailed to not take stress under the weight, is that the case or does it matter. I realize that glued on will make it easier when sanding and paint (no holes to patch), but is there an issue with screwing together?

Last question, what would you suggest as a height for a stand for a 120cm tank which will be appro 55 or 60 cm high? For visual style which is best. I noticed with a 60X40X45 tank on an ada style stand it looks best for the stand to be approx 2X the height of the tank, would this apply to a 120X60X60 tank as well? or lower?
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-11-2010, 04:08 AM
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If you use two 1 x 4's to substitute for a 2 x 4, glue them together along the full length and width, and clamp until the glue is dry, or use nails or screws to hold them together while the glue dries. I like to put the concave faces together and clamp them to flatten them together. That should result in a straight assembly. It isn't necessary that the two boards be perfectly straight, but I would want both boards to be equally bowed - best to cut a longer board in half, reverse the two pieces and glue them together. Looking at the ends of the boards, the grain on one should be curved opposite to the grain on the other.

Using today's PVA based glues, glued together boards are much stronger and more permanent than screwed or nailed together boards.

A good way to attach the plywood skin is to glue it, and use small brads to hold the assembly together until the glue dries. A pneumatic brad driver makes this very easy to do, and the holes that result are very small and easily filled.

The height of the stand is a matter of what looks best to you. I like to make scale sketches to see what various proportions look like. And, I sometimes find a photo of someone's really nicely proportioned stand and measure the dimensions to figure out how high it is, knowing how long and high the tank sitting on it is.

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-12-2010, 02:38 AM
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If you are going with 1/2" to 3/4" plywood skin, you can use a pocket hole screw along with glue. They would be only visible from the inside.I prefer the Kreg brand and it is available at Lowes.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-13-2010, 12:21 AM Thread Starter
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Sadily, I am locted in Taiwan now, so most of the tools I would use back home in Canada I can't find here. Taiwan is not really much of a DIY country, unless it is to do with little crafts. Most people are amazed I made the other two tank stands, built cupboard sets and bookshelfs etc. We the see me doing house wiring or plumbing that shocks the heck out of them.

No access to a Kreg pocket hole guide. Even a decent block plane I hade to import from Canada!
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-13-2010, 02:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tcampbell View Post
Sadily, I am locted in Taiwan now, so most of the tools I would use back home in Canada I can't find here. Taiwan is not really much of a DIY country, unless it is to do with little crafts. Most people are amazed I made the other two tank stands, built cupboard sets and bookshelfs etc. We the see me doing house wiring or plumbing that shocks the heck out of them.

No access to a Kreg pocket hole guide. Even a decent block plane I hade to import from Canada!
I would be glad to ship you one if you like .I could get a total price for you just cost I don't mind helping if you need me to if not no worries
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-15-2010, 05:47 AM Thread Starter
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The might be a great option, just let me know the approx price and shipping costs and I will see if it is worth it.
Thanks
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-15-2010, 06:02 AM
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I have good luck with the kreg jig jr(40 bucks) and a c clamp. Shipping couldn't be too terrible.

Shipped through USPS you can ship for as little as 20 dollars, depending on package size, weight, etc.
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