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Thread: First Stand build Plus lots of other questions

  1. #1
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    First Stand build Plus lots of other questions

    Hello Everyone, 1st time poster here. First I just want to say thanks to Joey for all the great videos! I just discovered your channel recently and been binge watching them. They are so helpful and inspiriational!

    I've been in the hobby for about 10 years now and had as many as 3 aquariums at once.

    I'm in need of some guidance in several areas so here goes.

    My goal:
    Freshwater, heavily planted Using an off the shelf 60 gallon cube (I believe Marineland 24"^3) from LFS
    1) viewable from all 4 sides
    2) Use some sort of diy sump or canister filter underneath. Preferably sump so I can have as much equipment as possible out of the tank. This will be my first sump as I've only used HOB and sponge filters.
    3) Since my wife LOVES to rearrange the furniture and we have oak floors, put the stand on wheels. Before you try to convince me otherwise I'm not the first to do this. There are several videos on youtube of people who have put wheels on larger tanks.
    4) Quiet, I mean not louder than typical sponge filter setup.


    Where I am so far:
    1-2) I wish to have 3 pipes: 1 return, 1 intake, 1 backup intake located in the center of the aquarium. My lfs said I could use a 9x9 weir box but would lose quite a bit of space (I calculate about 8 gallons), or I could run straight pipes with no box. A third idea I had could be to build a small weir box to mount/silicone to the pipes near the surface. The smallest, simplest, and most ecinomical, would be straight pipes. If I cap the inlet with a slotted cap/spounge, would that be adequite to keep fish out or would the suction be to much? Also, how much space do I need between each hole? How risky is it to drill your own hole? The video makes it look easy, but I'd hate to crack the glass on a $200 aquarium.


    3) Here are my current plans for the frame of the stand done in sketchup. I'm planning to use 2x4s milled down to 1x3s (probably more like 1x3.25). I figure that with a 20 gallon sump I would be looking at around 800lbs or so total, so 4, 4" casters rated 250lbs each should do the trick. Current plan has 2 straight casters mounted at the edges, 2 swivel casters with brakes mounted somewhat in so I can hide the casters with trim the outside. The circles around the casters represent the caster's approximate range of motion. I'd like to keep the stand's footprint as small as possible. I would appreciate any feedback on the plans for the stand. (Unfortunately I can't post a link to my sketchup plans since I don't have enough posts....)


    I'm not planning to have a canopy. Lighting, probably a pair of 24" led strips, maybe finnex 24/7s. I'm undecided how to hide the cable. Probably try to rig something to attach the cable to one of the outside corners of the tank.


    4) I'm between a submerged sump, trickle tower, or possibly a large canister. The tower would be cheaper and likely have a smaller footprint. This would be a benefit since you'll see in the plans that a 20 gallon tall barely fits underneath; however, I'm concerned about the noise of the water trickling down in a trickle tower. How loud are they compared to a submerged sump? If I go with the 20 gallon tall sump, I'll definitely do submerged. A 5 gallon bucket canister is also appealing, but I want the auto top off sumps provide, and am concerned about the lack of surface skimming you get with a canister.


    Co2) Currently, I don't plan to do co2, but after watching the diy video on it and noting the cost and annoyance of daily doses of Flourish excel, I'd like to have the option of adding co2 later. I'm wondering if I could put in a 4th pipe through the bottom to allow me to run air lines/co2 lines in the future?

    Thanks,

    Count_Sudoku

    Link to:

    Plumbing/Weir

  2. #2
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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  3. #3
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    Update with better caster placement

    aquarium stand 4.png

  4. #4
    DIYFK member Warfie's Avatar


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    My thoughts... And just so you know, I've been called Mr. OVERKILL... BUT, better safe than sorry.

    1) How about building/suspending the weir from the cross brace if it has one, or build one. Could pass the tubes through uni-seals into the bottom of the weir to suspend it. Either way, if it's black and you use drift wood around it, it would be masked a little. "Plant" some Pothos in the weir to help hide it above the tank and also help with filtration.

    1) Space between bulk heads is your limiting factor. Need enough room for the nut and being able to tighten them.

    3) Go bigger on the casters weight wise and make them ALL swivel. Nothing like trying to move a bunch of weight and not be able to scoot the the "straight" wheels around. I wouldn't think you'd need the brakes, lots of weight there. Make sure to bolt them to the stand, don't use screws that could pull out.

    3) Use some trim, spaced just of the floor a bit, to hide the casters.

    3) If it were mine, and I planned on moving it at all, I would have a welded steel stand. Less stress on it during moving. I've shoved plenty of HEAVY things around where the wheels and stand were not up to snuff...

    4) Haven't seen any reference to it, but I'm thinking of a sound absorption foam used in the sump area to deaden some of the noise. Could stick sheets to the bottom inside "top" of the stand and anywhere else there was room for it. We used this in a shop I worked at, was 1" thick and sticky backed. Did a really good job at deadening noise.

    4) Place filter media or sponge at the top of the trickle tower so the water has something "soft" to land on to help quiet that noise. My plan is to run socks to help slow down the water before hitting the media and cut down on splashing. My thinking is the water can seep out of the sock and follow the sock to the next surface. The splashing of water makes the most noise. If you don't like cleaning socks, cut the bottom off, or make a "soft" tube of some kind.

    5) Hide any cables in a cable cover, paint it if needed. Scrape off the white double stick tape and use a little silicone to stick it to the tank. They look better than cables and are fairly cheap. For that matter, how about running the cord down the emergency overflow tube, if it's big enough for the plug. Just MAKE SURE you put in a drip loop in the cord. I think I would oversize the tube, 1 1/2" should work well, just because it would look really clean that way.

  5. #5
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    Thanks for the ideas Warfie. Been mulling things over and watched Joey's latest video about Christine's Fish Room. Her stand jointery inspired me to simplify my stand which will save a lot of lumber and weight while still being plenty strong. Remember, this is just the frame. I will enclose with plywood and add trim.

    Elegent Stand Frame 1.pngElegent Stand Frame 2.pngElegent Stand Frame corner joint.pngElegent Stand Frame corner joint exploded.png

  6. #6
    DIYFK member Warfie's Avatar


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    Dado joinery is always stronger, even though more complicated and time consuming. Understand, a 2x4 will support 1000 lbs of weight along the grain of the wood, after skinning the stand in plywood, you could set a truck on it! I'm thinking of using box joints on a plywood build. Should make the corners bullet proof!

    I would suggest a good water PROOF glue and gluing everything. I like polyurethane construction adhesive when I want something to NEVER come apart, Loctite brand is what we use. It will break the wood before the glue joint.


    Great plan, any thoughts on the overflow tower?

    Just had a thought... but not sure what size pipe you need for the overflows...

    Run a 3" as your main and a 1 1/2" down the middle of that for the emergency? Should be able to secure the emergency to the main fairly easily. Only need 1 bulkhead and only one pipe shows... Anyone with more experience please correct me if this is not a good idea.

  7. #7
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    For sure on the jointery, but I've got the equipment to do it. So, may as well. My shop includes: 10" scms, 14" bandsaw with riser block giving 12" resaw, 8" jointer with 72" bed, 12" benchtop planer, track saw, and router.

    I posted more about the pipes over in diy equipment. Thread title is:

    Small Weir mounted directly to overflow pipes?



  8. #8
    DIYFK member Warfie's Avatar


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    Take a look at this...

    h t t p ://diyfishkeepers.com/forum/showthread.php?2967-A-new-way-to-Built-a-island-aquarium-filtration

  9. #9
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    Well, I started construction..... Here's what I've been up to the past few days:

    Starting with 2x4 framing lumber @ $1.80/8ft board, I rough cut them to length.
    IMG_0732 (Large).JPG

    Next I started the milling process of taking the boards from this:
    IMG_0733 (Large).JPG

    To This:

    IMG_0734 (Large).JPG

    IMG_0736 (Large).JPG

    To get there, I used my jointer to face joint, then put that jointed face against the fence to give me a nice 90 degree edge. Normally the next step would be to run that board through your table saw to rip it to width and give you a 3rd square side. But I don't have a table saw since my shop isn't big enough for the one I would want. So, I just flipped the board and cleaned the other edge with the jointer. This makes getting two perfectly parallel edges tricky, but with a bit of finagling (and lots of luck) you can get pretty close.
    IMG_0737 (Large).JPG

    IMG_0738 (Large).JPG

    Next, (with some help from the wife who played catcher), I ran the rough face through the thickness planer to finish the milling process.

    IMG_0739 (Large).JPG

    IMG_0740 (Large).JPG

    Check out those edges!

    IMG_0741 (Large).JPG

    If that's not square, I don't know what is!

    IMG_0747 (Large).JPG

    IMG_0749 (Large).JPG

    Next, it's time to cut the boards to length. Here is my quick and dirty stop block to ensure I got all boards exactly the same length. Eventually I'll build a nice miter saw stand with extension wings and measured stop blocks etc. But for now, I'm making do.

    IMG_0750 (Large).JPG

    Oops, looks like I didn't quite make the 4 legs the same width. Oh well, back to the jointer for a couple more passes.

    IMG_0754 (Large).JPG

  10. #10
    DIYFK member Warfie's Avatar


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    Nicely done! That will make assembly very easy!

  11. #11
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    I've been pretty busy the past week. Had family in town for Easter. So, had to prepare for that. But, father in law was a BIG help! He brought his truck and we emptied out my old, used, 55 gallon tank. I had 37 pseudotropheus (dunno what kind) and 3 bristlenose plecos. All from various spawninngs originated from a pair (now deceased) I picked up a couple years ago from LFS. The pseudos were mostly about a year old and in the 2-3" range. I had a couple larger. Took the tank, stand, and 36 of the pseudotropheus to my LFS and traded them for a new undrilled marineland 60 gallon cube. Got 80 bucks for the trade-in. Not bad considering I bought the tank and stand (an ok diy one) on CL 8 years ago for $100, and the tank had lots of big scratches on it and needed to be resealed.

    I've been watching the internet like a hawk for the dollar per gallon sale since I plan to use a 20 gal high for a sump underneath. Decided to go by petco this morning while running errands, just to measure the tank to be sure it would fit in the stand. Wouldn't you know, but the DPG sale was on. So I snatched my sump tank. Turns out it's 24 1/4" with the trim. Click here to enlarge I was hoping for an even 24". No matter, I'll just adjust the stand a smidge.

    Back to stand progress:

    Sometime before the weekend, I finished milling and cut the boards to length.

    IMG_0755 (Large).JPG

    Then, I had to figure out how I was going to cut the dados and lap joints/tennons. I decided to make a quick and dirty sled for my makeshift router table and see how that worked.

    IMG_0757 (Large).JPGIMG_0758 (Large).JPG

    Easter weekend came. So I had to wait. Got back to the project today, the router table didn't work. Far to much wobble between the table, bit, and sled. Plus, lots of tear out (which can be eliminated with sacrificial stock). Someday I'll build a proper table for my router (I have a nice one: Triton 2 1/4hp).

    IMG_0759 (Large).JPGIMG_0761 (Large).JPG

    Since my router didn't work.... Now what???? I looked at using my SCMS to make the dados and rabits, but that would have been too much trouble. So, I set up my band saw (remember I don't own a table saw). Didn't feel like swapping blades to my 3/4" 3tpi blade... probably should have, but changing blades can be a pain. I just used what I had on there. I think it was a 3/8" high tpi (can't remember tpi) that I had last used for cutting some 6" s&d pipe. Dialed it in, then away I went. It made short work of those large rabbits and gave me a nice pile of small ~3"^2 blocks. These first 4 boards are the top side pieces.

    IMG_0763 (Large).JPG

    Just for kicks and giggles I put them together as if they were lap joints for making a frame.

    IMG_0764 (Large).JPGIMG_0765 (Large).JPG

    Next, I cut the same laps into the legs.

    IMG_0767 (Large).JPG

    And that pile of blocks keeps getting higher.....

    IMG_0768 (Large).JPG

    I needed to make 2 more cuts to each side of the legs to give me my offset tenon. I'll tell you what, my bandsaw made short work of those cuts, and sure made a lot less sawdust than my router did!

    IMG_0770 (Large).JPGIMG_0771 (Large).JPG

    Now, I have another pile of smaller blocks to keep the bigger ones company. Click here to enlarge

    IMG_0769 (Large).JPG

    Lastly, I dry fitted the frame together to see how it fits.

    IMG_0772 (Large).JPG

    I was a little off in my cut on the tenons and made them a little narrow. So things aren't quite as snug as I'd like. I might run the offending edges through the jointer, or I might assemble as is and then just hit it with the sander. Not sure yet. Figured I'd sleep on it and see how CDO I want to be about it in the morning.
    IMG_0774 (Large).JPGIMG_0775 (Large).JPG

  12. #12
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Warfie Click here to enlarge
    I'm thinking of using box joints on a plywood build. Should make the corners bullet proof!
    If you're going to do that, you may as well go the next step and upgrade to dove tail Click here to enlarge

  13. #13
    DIYFK member Warfie's Avatar


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    Dovetails don't hold well in plywood and are much harder to tune up by hand with the alternating grain. All the box joint does is give more gluing surface, so I'm not sure yet...

    Your stand is going to be incredibly strong. Nice working on all the machining of the lap joints!

  14. #14
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    So, I did some more calculations on weight and looks like 4x250lb casters may be pushing it. A conservative measurement/estimate puts me at about 1200lbs total weight, and a more careful/realistic estimate right at 1000lbs. I could swap my 4" casters and go up to 5" casters rated at 350lbs. That would solve the weight, but it would also require me to move the location of the casters more inside toward the center and raise the height of the aquarium by an inch or so. I don't mind having the viewing height a little higher, but it would raise the center of gravity and move the support away from the outside. So risk of tipping would be greater.

    Another thought I had was to add a 5th swivel caster to the center of the stand. That would give me plenty of headroom for my weight issue without the added risk of tipping.

  15. #15
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    I took some inspiration from an old piano I have and came up with this. I will have all 4 sides open

    Aquarium Stand ellegent piano trim door.jpg

  16. #16
    DIYFK member r45t4m4n's Avatar


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    Ron Swanson would be proud.

  17. #17
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by r45t4m4n Click here to enlarge
    Ron Swanson would be proud.
    Uh..... Thanks???

  18. #18
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    Time for an update Click here to enlarge

    Cutting the dados for the bottom inner caster supports.

    IMG_0776 (Large).JPG

    Installed upper cross braces. I put them at an angle hoping to lessen some of the side to side rocking I was getting on the skinny end. Unfortunately it still rocks slightly North to south in the below picture. I'm hoping that installing 1/4" plywood (with cutouts for doors) will be enough to stabilize it. Otherwise, I may add some vertical angled braces.

    IMG_0780 (Large).JPG

    Here you can see the caster supports. I just used some scrap 3/4 ply.

    IMG_0781 (Large).JPG


    Tank on the stand. You can see a bit of 6" s&d scrap in there. I may end up using that (or 4") as a weir.

    IMG_0778 (Large).JPG
    IMG_0779 (Large).JPG

    Today I started working on the trim. I want to mimic the trim from my piano seen here.

    IMG_0806 (Large).JPG
    IMG_0807 (Large).JPG
    IMG_0808 (Large).JPG

    Mockup of the trim using pine framing lumber leftover from the stand frame. I pretty much just eyeballed everything. So, there're a few details that still need to be tweaked. (Incidentally, this is the first time I have ever tried to make trim).

    IMG_0796 (Large).JPG
    IMG_0801 (Large).JPG
    IMG_0800 (Large).JPG

    Exploded view of the pieces

    IMG_0804 (Large).JPG

  19. #19
    DIYFK member zig's Avatar


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    Awesome sketckup?? diagrams. I like the caster wheels idea actually. Looks good. You def have carpentry skills.

    Ron Swanson would be proud, thats hilarious. Ron swanson was a character on parks and rec, he loves timber, wood working, eating beef jerky, drinking fine malt whiskey, a man's man.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ron_Swanson

    Their is a guy on youtube that makes 3d vivarium landscapes, his voice is the spitting image (sound) of Ron Swanson, its uncanny how similar they sound.

    Edit: tell me this guy does not sound like ron swanson. https://m.youtube.com/user/LizardLandscapes
    No!.. need.. for shouting. No!... sleep.. till bedtime..(google it)

  20. #20
    DIYFK member emmbec's Avatar


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    Where did you learn Sketchup? I tried to use it once but it seemed too complicated or I just couldn't figure it out. Thanks for the awesome diagrams!

  21. #21
    DIYFK member Count_Sudoku's Avatar


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    @emmbec

    A friend of mine showed me some basics with the program and then I figured other stuff out as I went. I bet there are plenty of how to videos on youtube. It's a pretty sweet program once you get the hang of it, and it really lets you play with things before you start hacking away at the spensive hardwoods.

  22. #22
    DIYFK member Warfie's Avatar


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    You ever going to get water in that thing?

    Great progress! You are a much better cabinet maker than I, and sometimes, I have to be one... Like tomorrow, I cut the back of a lav cabinet 3 1/2" just to make it fit. Nothing like chewing up $400 plywood boxes!!!

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