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Thread: The aquaponics plywood tank build log

  1. #1
    DIYFK member Soil's Avatar


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    The aquaponics plywood tank build log ** update **

    To start of - I failed big!

    Yesterday I took all the measurements, made a neat blueprint - but mixed up the length with the width while making it, resulting in me building it wrong Click here to enlarge It is fixable but it will be 10 shorter on the width and 8 less liters, unless I start unscrewing stuff..

    Anyhow, here is how it looks atm! Made out of marine plywood:

    Attachment 6603Attachment 6604Click here to enlargeClick here to enlargeClick here to enlarge

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________

    ** Update **


    The whole thing is now done and I'm waiting for the silicone to dry up, and then one more night to check that it holds water.

    I used 3 layers of Plasti dip on the inside, which is a type of liquid rubber that comes in spray cans. It has been used by others in aquarium builds with no problems, and someone wrote that the company who makes it claims that its perfectly safe as soon as it has cured. We put silicone on the plywood before coating with the rubber tho, and the rubber didnt stick to the silicone so we put another layer on top just to make sure.

    The outside has two coats of outdoor paint, which will have no contact with the water.

    What you'll see in the pics is the tank, and the box which will hold the majority of the plants. The upper level will be dwarf mondo grass (aka Kyoto grass) and some mixed plants in the big box.



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  2. #2
    Qwerkinator! qwerk's Avatar


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    At least it was fixable and so far looks good Click here to enlarge

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    DIYFK member fiesta90150's Avatar


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    looks nice =)

  4. #4
    Divine Moderator Divinehammer's Avatar


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    looking good, at least you were able to fix it.
    Canadian Pleco lover! Soon to be built DIY 2000 Gallon RTC tank, Go Big Or Go Home!

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    DIYFK member Stryf's Avatar


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    looks good so far

  6. #6
    DIYFK member Snaf's Avatar


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    Looking good!
    10 Gal - Honey Gold Gourami, Picuts Catfish
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  7. #7
    DIYFK member NewLifeTanks's Avatar


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    Looks awesome so far.
    Find a new life in Christ!
    Custom made fish tanks in South Carolina

  8. #8
    DIYFK member Nekrasaaya's Avatar


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    Looks good

  9. #9
    DIYFK member tidus2410's Avatar


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    looks good

  10. #10
    DIYFK member h2so4hurts's Avatar


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    Cool little setup! No one on this forum can claim to have done everything perfectly on their builds Click here to enlarge Little screw ups like that just give the project character.
    240G SPS/LPS reef - tomato clowns& sebae nem, sunburst anthias, Powder B Tang, Royal Gramma, Desjardini Sailfin, Copperband, Spotfin, Moorish Idol Build thread Webcam will be back soon! Science news!

  11. #11
    DIYFK member Soil's Avatar


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    bump

  12. #12
    DIYFK member Stryf's Avatar


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    any updates?

  13. #13
    DIYFK member Soil's Avatar


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    yeah, I updated the original post

  14. #14
    DIYFK member fiesta90150's Avatar


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    you should just do a new post mate because alot of people just go to the last page where the new posts are usually at Click here to enlarge

    I didn't know you could use plastydip for tanks, that product is awesome you can even paint alloy wheels with it and if you don't like it just peel the paint of lol.

    Can't wait to see the rest of the build

  15. #15
    DIYFK member Soil's Avatar


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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fiesta90150 Click here to enlarge
    you should just do a new post mate because alot of people just go to the last page where the new posts are usually at Click here to enlarge
    And here I was trying to be fancy..

    Ok, so my verdict on Plasti dip - its not for plywood tanks. I had a blast spraying it on, everything went as planned untill it turned out the tank didnt hold water.

    I had to remove the glass and remove the plastidip where to silicone were to go. Re-sealed it - worked! Turnes out it was leaking in the back as well tho, so had to remove some more rubber and silicone the *** out of the corner to make sure it was tight, since the water runs between the silicone and the Plastidip (cant tell where the leak is).

    Anyhow, I think its all tight now and Im trying to tweak the waterflow so it wont overflow or make alot of noise. Hopefully tomarrow Ill have it up and running!

  16. #16
    DIYFK member Soil's Avatar


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    Ok, so here is the finished product!

    It turned out a little shabby, but I think its good enough for my first build and I consider this to be sort of a prototype

    Problems I've had:

    The Plasti dip spray on rubber worked, but didnt go well with silicone, so the sealing got quite messy. Its holding water fine now tho.

    The sandfiltration in the two flowerboxes proved to be too compact, so I had to go with stones in the upper level due to the low walls. In the bigger box I had a piece of cloth to keep the sand from running out with the water, but it didn't let enought water through. I ended up putting leca balls in a pile on the inside of the outflow pipe, and a rock in the pipe to prevent them from washing out. I then filled the rest of the box with sand and enough sand on top of the leca to hold them in place (they float)

    My only two problems now is 1: I need to get some light for the upper flower box since its kind of in the dark atm, and 2: My axelotl prefers the dark to the light, so I cant see it x/ Was kind of expected tho and if its happy Im happy. And it provides poo.

    The water is pumped through a small hose to the upper level, which fills up for about 1 cm and rains down to the lower level through 7 holes. It then goes through sand and roots and ends up back in the tank. The outflow is from a normal soda bottle and can be shut with a screw on cap. The whole box is removable and can be used as a normal flowerbox if would want to use it as a normal tank. Since the water from the upper level is raining down this makes quite the noise and I might create some contraption to fix later.

    Stock:

    1 Axelotl
    5 zebrafish

    As for waterplants I have:

    Hygrophila siamensis
    Java fern
    Echinodorus bleheri

    Normal plants:

    Nephrolepis exaltata
    Chlorophytum comosum
    Spathiphyllum wallisii
    Mondo grass "kyoto dwarf"
    "Plant to the far right I forgot the name of"

    The Mondo grass is on the upper level and is a bit yellow on the tips, probably from lack of light. I still need to learn how much I have to feed / overfeed to keep the nutrients high enough for the plants.

    Haven't checked the temp yet but it should be around 19-20 C

    heres some pics!

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  17. #17
    Divine Moderator Divinehammer's Avatar


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    looks good to me, for the splashing sound put some type of fabric hanging from it so the water flows down the cloth and it should decrease the noise or you could hang some plastic chain, which will do the same thing, or acrylic warn.
    Canadian Pleco lover! Soon to be built DIY 2000 Gallon RTC tank, Go Big Or Go Home!

  18. #18
    DIYFK member fiesta90150's Avatar


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    Turned out pretty nice. Congratz. As for the noise just like divine said the plastic chain works. I saw another tank which had one in the stand pipe

  19. #19
    Divine Moderator Divinehammer's Avatar


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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fiesta90150 Click here to enlarge
    Turned out pretty nice. Congratz. As for the noise just like divine said the plastic chain works. I saw another tank which had one in the stand pipe
    hey good idea never thought of that to quite a stand pipe down, works on a drain pipe for your ease trough on the house, Great idea!Click here to enlarge
    Canadian Pleco lover! Soon to be built DIY 2000 Gallon RTC tank, Go Big Or Go Home!

  20. #20
    DIYFK member Stryf's Avatar


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    looks great

  21. #21
    DIYFK member fiesta90150's Avatar


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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Divinehammer Click here to enlarge
    hey good idea never thought of that to quite a stand pipe down, works on a drain pipe for your ease trough on the house, Great idea!Click here to enlarge
    yeah saw that on a youtube vid "how to silence an overflow" Click here to enlarge but i habe never found plastic chain lol.

  22. #22
    DIYFK member Kordova's Avatar


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    Well isn't that something, very unique, love the idea. At least it's holding water now. Good job if you ask me!

  23. #23
    DIYFK member sarahanne1984's Avatar


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    hi! your set up looks great! i joined this forum initially just to talk to you! so i hope youll take the time to please lend me your brain and a little advise! Click here to enlarge i have made a similar set up to yours also plastidip and plywood, but i used the plastidip in the open can because you get more for cheaper and i thought it would be good to brush it on thicker. except mine doesnt have the glass in the front. its a box that will stand behind my aquarium and filter the water and then pour it through the plants at the top and then pour back into my aquarium. i have also run into the trouble with the silicone and plastidip combo causing a leak. i used some caulk to fill in the small gaps of the wood seams thinking that the plastidip coating would rest better on top of it instead of sinking into the cracks and leaving space. but i didnt realize the caulk i used had silicone in it! now i have a leak too across one of the bottom seams somewhere!
    when yours was leaking in the back- did you put more silicone over the plastidip? or did you remove the silicone and plastidip from the corners and use more plastidip? or please tell me what you think i should try if you would! my little DIY project is quickly becoming a money pit!

  24. #24
    DIYFK member TheChairman's Avatar


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    Awesome I also had an aquaponics. Works so well.
    Always custom sumps, Always custom filters \m/>__<\m/

  25. #25
    DIYFK member keightley's Avatar


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    It would be nice to see the final pictures of this project. The links of the pictures are broken. Click here to enlarge

    Keightley

  26. #26
    DIYFK member Moxley's Avatar


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    Looks great. I'd like to see some pics when it's finished!

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