Reinforcing the floor over a crawlspace. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 03:39 PM Thread Starter
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Reinforcing the floor over a crawlspace.

Well I'm installing the hardwood floor into my living room/dining room this weekend. With that in I can think about setting up my 125 gallon tank.

As you might expect the joist run the wrong direction so I'm going to have to crawl underneath and play with the spideys. Without additional support there will be only one joist holding the bulk of the weight. A great way to make a hole in the floor.

Critique this plan:

On my stand I have 8 vertical 2x4's bearing the load. In order to ensure that there is no sagging of the floor under the weight I plan on six to eight 4x4 supports (pressure treated). I'll place these on some of the standard 50lb footing blocks.

I believe the floor is 2x8 joist on a 16" width but I need to crawl underneath and measure for sure. I did a crawl through with the home inspector when we where in escrow. I plan on adding connecting joist (using standard joist hangers) directly underneath the legs of the stand.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 03:59 PM
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Tough to give much input without some more details or photos or exact measurements. But the general plan sounds to be about right.

The 2x4s that compose your stand. Are they just "legs" or are they attached to a sill plate (for lack of a better term here) which would spread out their load?

If you can do some measurement and find the exact location from the underside, you might be able to simply use 2 4x4s that span between and perpendicular to your floor joists. You could probably get the 4x4s flush up to the underside of the floor and use ticos/hangers off the floor joists to hang them. Get one 4x4 along the area that will be directly under the front of the stand and a second directly under the back.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 04:19 PM
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That sounds about right but 6 to 8 is to much I mean it would hurt u but I bet 1-3 placed in the right spots should be fine

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 04:19 PM
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Would not hurt

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 06:31 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by lksdrinker View Post
The 2x4s that compose your stand. Are they just "legs" or are they attached to a sill plate (for lack of a better term here) which would spread out their load?
Legs. 1/2 inch below the cross bars. It has a molding that comes down to hide all but a 1/16" gap.

Quote:
If you can do some measurement and find the exact location from the underside, you might be able to simply use 2 4x4s that span between and perpendicular to your floor joists. You could probably get the 4x4s flush up to the underside of the floor and use ticos/hangers off the floor joists to hang them. Get one 4x4 along the area that will be directly under the front of the stand and a second directly under the back.
72" long by 18" wide tank. All of it resting on 8 legs in less than 10sq. feet of floor space. It will up against a loadbearing interior wall that I know is positioned along a joist. My major concern is bowing of the 3/4 subfloor. I have to eliminate as most of the warping for my hardwood floor as well. Don't want the T&G to be pulled apart. I'd rather overdo it than underdo it in this situation.

Hmmm. Perhaps placing a 2x12 flat against the subfloor, then hang 2x8's vertically underneath the 2x12. Uses the 2x12 to transfer the load horizontally so it's not relying upon the subfloor. Gives me a larger "target" to hit with my measurements as well. I don't have to worry about putting the added cross joist directly under the legs.

Probably can get away with four 4x4's on the corners with that setup.

Put it all together and I can park my truck on top of it... Just what I want.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 07:02 PM
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Legs. 1/2 inch below the cross bars. It has a molding that comes down to hide all but a 1/16" gap.



72" long by 18" wide tank. All of it resting on 8 legs in less than 10sq. feet of floor space. It will up against a loadbearing interior wall that I know is positioned along a joist. My major concern is bowing of the 3/4 subfloor. I have to eliminate as most of the warping for my hardwood floor as well. Don't want the T&G to be pulled apart. I'd rather overdo it than underdo it in this situation.

Hmmm. Perhaps placing a 2x12 flat against the subfloor, then hang 2x8's vertically underneath the 2x12. Uses the 2x12 to transfer the load horizontally so it's not relying upon the subfloor. Gives me a larger "target" to hit with my measurements as well. I don't have to worry about putting the added cross joist directly under the legs.

Probably can get away with four 4x4's on the corners with that setup.

Put it all together and I can park my truck on top of it... Just what I want.
I'd place those legs on top of something (could be another 2x4 even) to spread the load out to begin with, and then still stick to your plan of bracing even more from underneath.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 07:29 PM Thread Starter
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I'd place those legs on top of something (could be another 2x4 even) to spread the load out to begin with, and then still stick to your plan of bracing even more from underneath.
For aesthetic reasons (wife) bracing above the floor is not an option.

Previous house I had this setup at was over hardwood on top of cement slab. Not even a dent in the hardwood when I removed it.

Total weight filled is around 1,500lbs. That is around 200lbs per leg on a 2x4 end. Really not that much for the hardwood floor. It can take it directly on top provided it is firmly supported underneath. It also needs to be completely level from the bottom if possible.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 07:37 PM
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Total weight filled is around 1,500lbs. That is around 200lbs per leg on a 2x4 end.
Sounds like some sound construction advice, so I won't add any more. But my guess is a 125g tank, with stand, might be closer to 2000 lbs. 10lbs per gallon, including substrate and hardscape, a couple hundred for the tank, and then the stand, possibly including fixture, pumps, CO2, whatever.

Not a big deal, but if you're calculating weight for structural purposes, might as well err on the side of caution.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 07:41 PM Thread Starter
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Then when I am completed with the project I will right a note in sharpie "crazy owner had big fish tank" on the wood.

:-)
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 07:55 PM
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For aesthetic reasons (wife) bracing above the floor is not an option.
Bah, theres ways to accomplish it and make it aesthetically pleasing. I'm not talking about using something to brace the floor so much as essentially a sill plate at the bottom of your legs....kind of like a foot for all those legs to rest on but part of the stand and not part of the floor. Are you leaving those 2x4 legs bare and exposed to be seen at all times, or are you covering it somehow? Shouldn't be too difficult to cover a bit more lumber.
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 08:30 PM Thread Starter
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I don't know if I was was clear but I took your idea of the sill plate and transferred it below the floor. i.e. Using a flat 2x12's to reinforce the subfloor. I can go out further to either side as well. I'll probably use some 8' boards. I'll also use a bunch of 2" gold screws to really attach it to the subfloor. There are so many uses for those screws.. :-)

The stand has a 1/16" of the legs showing as the rest is covered by a molding. It can't been seen unless you lay with your eye next to the floor.

Last time I set it up I placed those furniture mover sliders under each leg to protect the floors finish. I also used a plastic sheet to form a catch/evaporation basin under the stand. This has the added benefit of acting as a dust collector to keep the hardwood finish pristine. The movers faces were priceless when they picked up the stand and the floor was perfectly clean at the last house.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by THE V View Post
I don't know if I was was clear but I took your idea of the sill plate and transferred it below the floor. i.e. Using a flat 2x12's to reinforce the subfloor. I can go out further to either side as well. I'll probably use some 8' boards. I'll also use a bunch of 2" gold screws to really attach it to the subfloor. There are so many uses for those screws.. :-)

The stand has a 1/16" of the legs showing as the rest is covered by a molding. It can't been seen unless you lay with your eye next to the floor.

Last time I set it up I placed those furniture mover sliders under each leg to protect the floors finish. I also used a plastic sheet to form a catch/evaporation basin under the stand. This has the added benefit of acting as a dust collector to keep the hardwood finish pristine. The movers faces were priceless when they picked up the stand and the floor was perfectly clean at the last house.
I'm not so sure you want to attach that to the subfloor. In my head I cant see that providing anymore support than the subfloor itself. You want to use the joists that are there as thats your "structure". You also dont want the 12" side facing the subfloor but the 2" side....in the same fashion that the joists are installed (tall, not wide). I'd use ticos ( a/k/a joist hangers, and probably lots of other names) on the joists already there to place this "sill plate" perpendicular to the joists and under the subfloor.
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