Putting 75g or 2x 20g in a 2014 Pine Grove mobile home - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 01:42 PM Thread Starter
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Putting 75g or 2x 20g in a 2014 Pine Grove mobile home

Hey all. Bought a mobile home and want me some fish tanks in there. Want to either move my 20 w 40 on top or 20 20 or 75g setup to the mobile home. Problem is weight rating. When i contacted them they said 40#/sqft... sounds low because i know i weigh more than that per sqft standing so id assume thats dead weight. In the area of my 75g w the plywood underneath though thats only 360 lbs. Id estimate a 75g w tons of eco complete for plants to weigh a solid 900+ lbs. Quite a big gap. The floor is 2x6s if im not mistaken at about a 8-10' span from one side to the other of the chassis. Whole trailers only 14' wide... would it hold? Idk if to push my luck its a nice new 2014 model. Its currently on the 2nd floor in my parents house in my old bedroom.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 02:15 PM
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A gallon of water weights a little over 8 pounds. A 75G tank could weigh 150 pounds empty. The weight of the tank you want plus the weight of a bag(s) of substrate plus the water and you should have a good estimate.

The only way you would know if it would hold would be to hire a structural engineer. Every home is different with materials used and how its built so there is no exact answer.

Last edited by laconic; 11-03-2014 at 02:17 PM. Reason: addition
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 04:52 PM
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I am not sure about a trailer but I have my 20 Gall Long on my 42 foot houseboat. (Its docked and extremely stable unless a hurricane comes around with gale force winds). I thought of trying a 30gal but I the weight on one side of the boat would of been way too much for my liking.

Ever thought of doing maybe a smaller 10-15gl tank? I cant do my 30 so I am going to do my little 10 gal on the other side of the boat. 20 + 10 = 30 :-P or so Im tricking my mind into thinking.

Is the trailer stationary? You also have to worry about moving the trailer in the future. How easy is it to move the tanks to the ground (take water out) when you move the trailer?

Also, space. Is there enough room to fit everything? I am have to move the boat next week. So I have to take the water out of the tank and get dad to help me move the tank to the other boat (temp) for a week while we deal with my boat.

I recomend staying 20 and under gallons. Space out the weight. Make it easier to deal with when things come up.

This coming from someone whos plans for massive tanks came to a end because of realization of where I live vs weight. :-(
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 08:56 PM
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I live in a doublewide with a full basement. I have a 75g in the kitchen, a 75g in one bedroom, a 125g in the living room, and a 55g in the master bedroom. If you floor is only rated at 40#/sq foot, I'd get another home. Your couch has four legs approximately 1 sq inch, your couch probably weighs around 120 lbs, that's 30#/ sq inch. Anywhere you can setup the tank perpendicular to the ploor joists is going to be best, but if your stand is constructed in such a way as it has full perimeter contact to the floor, you should be fine.


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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 09:51 PM
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To get the true answer you will need to do some looking at how your trailer is built and how it is supported. So far your guess about the construction is almost certain to be wrong. Nobody would build that flimsy. But to find out, it will take somebody looking underneath and finding out. This is a drawing of what a 14 wide is likely to have in floor support.



You may expect two very large iron beams front to back. the front will be where the hitch was attached for towing down the road. May be there or removed. Locate these two beams and then look for cross beams which may be the 2X6 you mentioned. But they will be spaced more like 16-24" apart and laid across the iron.
How your trailer is set up and supported from the bottom is what determines how much load you can safely hold up. In a trailer, pay little attention to the inside walls as they only set on the floor. Not like a stick built house.
The green areas where it would be over the iron is best as it is fully supported. In between is less as really , really heavy weight could make the wood bow down. The red is the worst as it is farther from support and more prone to bowing. BUT all of this can be changed IF there is support underneath. The red area can be fine IF the outside is placed on a firm foundation or IF there is a pier (jack, beam, etc.) placed underneath at that spot.
The iron beams are likely about 6' apart with only about 4' stuck out to the sides so if you get somewhat close to on top of the iron, all is well.
If you HAVE to stick it on the red spot, lay a couple 2X12 under it and put a jack stand to hold it up.
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-04-2014, 02:31 AM Thread Starter
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Iirc the 40lb rating is for that much weight spread out evenly throughout the whole floor. That is, the home is say 500 sqft so itll hold 20000 lbs total.
I work construction and understand exactly how these are built and wouldnt buy one if i wasnt confident in the strength of the structure. I climbed under and you cant see the wood but i know they are built with 2x6 floors and walls as per the manufacturers specs.
I should make it clear this is a mobile home. It is on a slab and is stationary and anchored and is not to be confused with a camper or RV. I know itll hold 2x 20 gallon tanks im just not sure about a 75.
Also, the 75 is on 2 3/4" pieces of plywood stacked to help spread weight to avoid problems in my house and id do the same here.
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-04-2014, 03:02 AM
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I was pretty sure there was something wrong about the rating.
If you are on a solid slab it makes it much better in some ways if you need to add support. It's not totally vital that the tanks are on a floor joist, just better. Rather than setting between two, it is steadier if it is on one ore more. Do you have the heavy black cardboard on the underside? That makes it a bit harder to see the joists but you can often find them by pushing up on the cardboard or sometimes you can see where it is stapled to them.
If you wanted to put the tanks on an outside wall and it is not supported, the slab is a good start for fixing that part. It gives you a solid base and then jacks from Lowe's ,etc. are reasonably cheap to fit underneath just as a "feel-good" item.

These are made for doing the job.
http://www.lowes.com/pd_210099-46417...d=3201381&Ntt=
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-04-2014, 03:14 AM
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2x6 walls? As an electrician, I've seen the studs in many single and double wide trailers and have never come across a 2x6 wall. In fact, most are actually 2x3 walls. My grandparents and my parents purchased double wides and had to special order 2x4 outer walls so they could upgrade the insulation.

Moral of the story is you might want to double check your home's build specs. I wouldn't assume the floors are 2x6 until you see it with your own eyes.


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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-04-2014, 03:17 AM Thread Starter
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Its got some black plastic packed with insulation. Both as a waterproofer and to solve the whole lack of insulation problem these homes are known for. I know where the joists are because of the lags w huge fender washers holding said plastic up.
yea its nice to have a slab and not just footings for said reason. Can always jack up where needed. Problem is id want the tank against the BR wall in the middle of the home and the joists there run the way you dont want em to( with the tank vs against) plus the middle of the underside drops down a lot because its more heavily packed with insulation i think(now that i think about it thats probably the duct system). Ill have to double check.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-04-2014, 03:22 AM Thread Starter
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Its a new unit seems like most come w 2x6 walls now for better insulation. Id hope theres no huge gap in the wall because its definitely 6 inches or so. This is also a fancy packaged home w sheetrock walls etc.. so its possible the cheaper ones come w 2x4 walls but this one sure doesnt.
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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-04-2014, 03:28 AM Thread Starter
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Attatched is a picture of the window sill in the bedroom.
doubt theyd go through all this trouble to try and convince me its 2x6 walls. Would take a hell of a lot of shims and extra 2x4s and end up costing more than just using actual 2x6s...
so yes, the house is framed with(at least) 2x6s for exterior walls. Interior walls are 2x4.
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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-04-2014, 03:42 PM
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Some of what you are saying makes total sense but you may be missing how many floor joists there are. If you have a bow in the plastic which goes down along the center and the comes back up at the sides, it is just a way to deal with the heavy iron and ductwork. Rather than try to seal each separately, it holds air better if they do it in one part. Makes working on them a bit harder as you can't see where things are as well due to the plastic. Many people have not moved their thinking about trailers (manufacted) homes as times and methods have changed. Walls of 2X6 are not strange, just newer and better quality than some stick built homes.
Your basic question of how much weight can it handle is still the same whether the walls are 2X6 or not. The floor is what counts and that part is still about how it is supported or whether you want to do a preemptive support or just wait and see if it does begin to bow down. Sagging floors is not as big a problem in this type construction as it is in stick built where the walls are connected to the floor more.
If you put too much weight on the floor in a spot that is not supported, it will not be a sudden disaster in any way. Worst case? You may notice the tank is not level and find the floor has gone down a 1/4 or 1/2". A 1/4 off level will show big time and most any floor joist can handle that much deflection without breaking. So if you guess totally and are wrong, you will notice it and have to work out a support at that time.
No biggie, so the question becomes whether to work more now or chance it and work later.
I favor doing it now because later there may be snow up to the Ying-Yang and I don't like laying in snow !!!
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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-05-2014, 04:41 AM Thread Starter
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Gotcha. Yeah people dont realize they dont build these like they used to. On the inside youd never know it was a 'trailer home'. Im not complaining. New home in a nice clean park, and the neighbors are much farther than if i was in an apartment building.
the floor is 2x6's 16" OC. Tank would be just about right in the middle of the 2 big a** beams (underneath this thing is so cool. Makes my 7x28 trailer thats not much smaller look like nuthin). The beams are probably like 10' apart with around 2' hanging off each end. Thats a very rough estimate as 6"+ is taken up on each because its an i beam but you get the idea. Unfortunately due to design weight would be on 2 2x6s. Itd be against the bathroom wall which is an interior wall. Homes a 14x35 so its much too small to put the tank against an outer wall.
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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-05-2014, 04:43 AM Thread Starter
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Honestly im not even sure how to go about adding support because of the duct work in the middle. If it was on the end thats 1 thing but this is right in the middle. Ill have to look and see. Can get the extra jacks for free from my dad, i think so id totally do it... but idk if its feasible.
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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-05-2014, 02:43 PM
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Okay, I had the same setup on a lake house. The center space is covered and a bear to see what was there. That is until feral cats got in and clawed a home out! Thereis likely to be a spot where you can run a jackstand up as you only need about 6 inches of space but room to work is real hard to find. Getting a nice solid beam up among the duct and plumbing may be a trick!!!
My only advise would be to look it over carefully before giving up. And taking a chance is not all that big of a thing. It is not a sudden crash/boom but a slow rolling fault that should not be allowed to go long term. Sagging floors is not something that is a disaster but just part of routine maintenance, especially in older homes where good foundations were not used. One of the first rentals I bought had two 2X under the front legs of the couch to level it when I first looked at the place! No biggie for a DIY'er.
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