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Making a Tank Stand


renman303

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Going to start my stand here in the next week or so. I know that I spoke with someone at Aarons home while moving his setup. I believe it was "Craig"? Forgive me if I'm mistaken.

I'm going to have to build for a ~240 gallon tank. I was going to use 4x4's on 2 foot centers. I guess 2x4's on edge would do for the majority of the frame. I also want to veneer it and put on standard cabinet doors for ease of staining.

Thanks for any input here.

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  • 8 months later...
  • 9 months later...

This is a great engineering challenge. I am a big believer in knockoff engineering so when I think of a wood stand, I immediately head to the LFS and scope out how the commercial boys do it. I have an Oceanic 120 gallon and the stand made by said company. All uprights are one-by stock. Honestly, I think it is MDF and not even baltic birch marine grade plywood. Now, I would never, never build the structure of a cabinet with MDF. I would highly recommend the marine grade plywood though. The carcass of the cabinet made with baltic birch and having doubled uprights in the corner and two foot centers would make a strong as a brick sh-t-house carcass. The doors could then be easily fabricated as slab front, flat doors(contemporary, not raised panel style) by purchasing MDF veneered sheet goods. Both the baltic birch and the veenered MDF cored sheet goods are available at what was once called Paxton Woods in South Austin. You can google Paxton Woods to find their phone number. It is a cool, huge place that will sell to DIY guys.

You can over build the stand with 4x4's, but you are going to give up a tremendous amount of space beneath the tank because of the stand super structure. Take some time to look under a commercial stand. I think you'll see that you can be smart about materials and net out a huge gain in space in your cabinet.

For my 180 build, I am going to fabricate a steel square tubing frame and then wrap it with a wood carcass to allow for a four foot span with no uprights cluttering access to the sump. After eight years of fighting access issues to my sump under my 120, I can think of nothing that will be nicer in a new system. We do after all, spend a lot of time under our tanks doing maintenance.

I would help you build this thing in my shop, but I am currently involved in a huge kitchen remodel project and do not have shop time available to take on a project. If you nose around, maybe you can find somebody with a nice cabinet saw and shop to help you get your stand going.

Mike

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DO NOT OVERBUILD STANDS...

I hate moving everyone's 1,000lb stands when they tire of the hobby.

Honestly I moved a 220g a few months ago and while the tank was heavy and it was a long walk, it sucked going back and fighting the crap out of that stand. With the help of only one friend I can move a 240g tank, no problem. We almost left the stand behind. It was ridiculous. Using 4x4's will really screw up your equipment space and on 2' centers will make it nearly impossible to move a sump into the stand.

Use a couple of 2x2's or 2x4's in the corners to have something to screw it all together to, consider running a 2x6 across the front and back tops as headers so you can have 2 doors that open to reveal a 4' long opening so you can access the equipment, and skin it with a nice 1/2" furniture plywood. The plywood will give it plenty of strength.

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I build my stands completly out of 3/4" plywood. AC pine or oak veneer are my favorites. It takes a lot less stand than you would expect to hold the weight of a tank. Here is a stand I built for a 215g being tested with a 240g on top. Plywood is STRONG!

When testing I did not get any deflection in the stand at all! The inside of the stand has almost the exact same area of the tank.

4x4s work great but are extreme overkill.

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ya, when i built mine i framed the corners like a house, then ran 1 2x4s standing up for the length. when u put plywood on the outside its like the glass on ur tank, the sheer strength of it is fanominal. The use of wood glue on everything is a must. its like one continuous nail all over. I do suggest running a board across the middle under the center of the tank. it doesnt have to be braced down, used GLUE on EVERYTHING and there wont be any problems. I nail all of mine(no crews) pre-drill holes to keep from cracking. If anyone wants they can come see my stand and there is no boards to block the sump. Look at my blogs.

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Sorry guys,

This was from March of 2008. I'm well underway now.

I may have the pics in my Blog but, I bought a standard 72"x24" stand. I just used about $10 worth of wood to reinforce it. I put up 2"x10"'s vertically on each end and in between the three doors front and back. Then I notched the 2x10's and ran 2x4's across the top of the two center braces in pairs...No screws. You could park a Hummer on it now.

Dave

post-155-12511658678844_thumb.jpg

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