new plywood tank build diary

Filters,heaters ,etc and all construction tips

new plywood tank build diary

Postby davey_c on 24 Oct 2012 21:20

well its begun, i got a delivery yesterday of 10 16' lenghts of 4x2 and an 8x4 sheet of 1" thick plywood so i started cutting today. i decided on a lenght on 6'6" and added 2" (thickness of front and back sheets) to the dept for the top of the frame. then from the offcuts i determined the height which worked out just under 3' high so it'll be at an ideal viewing height for the tank.
here's a pic of the timber cut to size to get the main stand assembled.

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then came the task of assembling it so out came the screwgun and screws (5x80) and measured where the studs were going. i decided to leave a slightly wider gap in the middle because thats where the single door will be to the storage area below... well it'll hold all the crap i keep falling over in the fishroom . i think the 2 outside gaps are 18.5" and the centre one is 20.5". the plan was to box in the suport joists for strenght so thats why the are in doubles with the thickness of 4x2 between. when the studs are finished they will amount to 6"x4" in total... should deffinately be strong enough!!

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now that the stand was together it was time to cut the base. i measured the total lenght of the stand and deducted 2" for the 2 end panels which gave me the base lenght. the width was made to suit the full sheet width so i only had to cut the lenght.

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thats where i'm at for the moment and can go no further untill i get more plywood in a couple of weeks for the tank. only filling in the frame in the meantime to keep busy but all the plywood offcuts will be going into the top bracing so there should be little waste.
anyways here's some bit i got for the sealing stage:
10kg epoxy resin
5L of acetone for cleaning of rollers etc
50m x 100mm woven tape for the internal corners of the tank

Image

Image
below tank is for sale

my tank build
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby apistodiscus on 24 Oct 2012 21:38

use a decent brush rather than the roller. It's easier to apply. While waiting for the first layer of epoxy to dry wrap the brush into some cling film and put it in the freezer. Get a digital scale to measure the exact quantities of resin and hardener. I used the same epoxy for my tank and it takes a while to dry. Wait until it has gone almost off before adding the next layer of epoxy or you can let the first layer go completely hard and then give it a light sanding. The first method gives a stronger bond and is less messy. Just be patient with it. A little epoxy goes a long way
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby MrJackDempsey on 24 Oct 2012 21:42

Well done Dave, great to see someone willing to make their own, I'm sure Holger will be available to help out ( surprised he hasn't make more for himself ) Keep photos coming plus detailed notes of everything you're doing. What's the fish list for this tank?
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby apistodiscus on 24 Oct 2012 21:49

MrJackDempsey wrote: I'm sure Holger will be available to help out ( surprised he hasn't make more for himself )

You talk to Aisling, Dave ;)
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby MrJackDempsey on 24 Oct 2012 21:59

apistodiscus wrote:
MrJackDempsey wrote: I'm sure Holger will be available to help out ( surprised he hasn't make more for himself )

You talk to Aisling, Dave ;)

Just tell her that you're giving up on fish and getting into rally driving and that you are getting a old banger to do up , engine will have to be stripped in the kitchen as you need warmth and light. Plus you need all the spare sheets, towels ( preferably bath towels) to wipe away the grease and old oil. Wondering aloud would it be alright to use the sink to get rid of said oil?
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby davey_c on 24 Oct 2012 22:19

cheers guys.... thanks for the tips regarding the epoxy coating holger just need to get the instructions translated now :lol: ... think sister-in-law is fluent but i'll see how good she is in due time :lol: ... should be an interesting learning curve...

@dave... for the moment the stocking list will be rtc, giraffe cat, tiger shovelnose, arowana, s/a lungfish, peacock bass, maybe a dat... trips to lfs will only be when really necessary to prevent unnecessary additions :lol:

MrJackDempsey wrote:
apistodiscus wrote:
MrJackDempsey wrote: I'm sure Holger will be available to help out ( surprised he hasn't make more for himself )

You talk to Aisling, Dave ;)

Just tell her that you're giving up on fish and getting into rally driving and that you are getting a old banger to do up , engine will have to be stripped in the kitchen as you need warmth and light. Plus you need all the spare sheets, towels ( preferably bath towels) to wipe away the grease and old oil. Wondering aloud would it be alright to use the sink to get rid of said oil?


and the dishwasher as a parts washer :lol: :lol: ... there's a man who knows how to get his way :lol:
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby apistodiscus on 24 Oct 2012 22:25

MrJackDempsey wrote:
apistodiscus wrote:
MrJackDempsey wrote: I'm sure Holger will be available to help out ( surprised he hasn't make more for himself )

You talk to Aisling, Dave ;)

Just tell her that you're giving up on fish and getting into rally driving and that you are getting a old banger to do up , engine will have to be stripped in the kitchen as you need warmth and light. Plus you need all the spare sheets, towels ( preferably bath towels) to wipe away the grease and old oil. Wondering aloud would it be alright to use the sink to get rid of said oil?


Surprisingly, that I would get away with. She'd even be impressed. :cry:

@Davey_C, it's pretty easy 100g of resin (large container) to 55g of hardener (small container), mix it all up with a spoon or stick and apply. Not rocket science. One hint from me and I only found this out half way through my build, put the containers into hottish (not boiling) water. This will make it easier and more evenly to apply and you get a better penetration into the ply and glassfibre. Make sure your room temperature remains above 20 degrees or he stuff will take ages to dry
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby MrJackDempsey on 24 Oct 2012 22:31

davey_c wrote:
and the dishwasher as a parts washer :lol: :lol: ... there's a man who knows how to get his way :lol:

I can't use that excuse anymore as I had to get rid of the dish washer to make way for the tank :D trouble is the new dishwasher is a worn out crock ( me)
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby apistodiscus on 24 Oct 2012 22:43

Just had a look at the full sized picture of he stand. Are you planning to rest the weight of the tank only on the to pieces of 4*2 that run the length of the tank? I wouldput another length or two parallel with them and then put a sheet of MDF or OSB (cheaper than ply) on top of that. This will make for a more even weight distribution. Alternatively you could add a length of 4*2 over each of the segments of the stand so you will have even support throughout the stand.
One last think. What are you planning in the way of filtration?
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby davey_c on 24 Oct 2012 23:21

the plan is to put more 4x2 on its flat on top of the joists running the same way so its all the same level, i think it would be stronger than across the joists ;)
filtration will be through a pressurized pond filter, was gonna go with a sump but chickened out in the end :lol:
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby spons on 24 Oct 2012 23:23

Impressive stuff going on here! Keep us posting... ;)
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby Walola on 26 Oct 2012 12:23

Head is mashed with all this DIY but this is worth keeping an eye on, If I win the lotto then you have a job from me for building a fish tank :) Wonderful what your doing and your living to tell the tale (Patience in your home ;) )
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby wayne mc glynn on 26 Oct 2012 12:43

looking deadly mate, i'd be building one myself if i had the space. looking forward to see how it progresses, i might have to call out to see it when it's up and running. what will the total volume be dave? will you be scaping it with rocks/wood or just leaving it bare mate? need some more info here pal!!!!! i'll be following this closely. best of luck with it.

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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby apistodiscus on 26 Oct 2012 14:20

Walola wrote:Head is mashed with all this DIY but this is worth keeping an eye on, If I win the lotto then you have a job from me for building a fish tank :) Wonderful what your doing and your living to tell the tale (Patience in your home ;) )

I've built my plywood tanks (975l and 300l) for about €600 for the two of them . No need to win the lotto. Part of DIY is to make it cheaper than buying it off the shelf
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Re: new plywood tank build diary

Postby Walola on 26 Oct 2012 14:50

apistodiscus wrote:
Walola wrote:Head is mashed with all this DIY but this is worth keeping an eye on, If I win the lotto then you have a job from me for building a fish tank :) Wonderful what your doing and your living to tell the tale (Patience in your home ;) )

I've built my plywood tanks (975l and 300l) for about €600 for the two of them . No need to win the lotto. Part of DIY is to make it cheaper than buying it off the shelf
Having the money and the space in the house would mean winning the lotto and getting away with stuff you normally wouldn't :) Plus I'm a disaster at DIY, I had to put together a chest of drawers for my sister, they ended up like a set of stairs haha
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