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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all,

As some of you may know I am a professional cabinet and furniture maker/designer. I was trained in the art, through an apprenticship, in th euse and skills associated with fine furniture, hand tools and all manner of related areas. I am not always much help with your fish or plant problems, but this stuff I do know and will be happy to share my knowledge and experiences with anyone. No question is to basic and will never be considered silly.

Currently I work for a company called VCA, a high end furniture and cabinet shop that has done work for people like Bill Gates's private residence and the GAP headquarters in NYC. Below is a pic of one of my own personal designs and projects.



Ask away:)
 

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Great!

I HATE the common pine rectangle stand with the double doors. Of course, that is what I have.

I have always dreamed of making a finer piece of furniture that would perhaps have shelfs for books and not be as boxy. However, I could never figure out how to distribute the load of the aquarium without the evenly distributed 2x4s.

Any thoughts Dennis?
 

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Tank size please:)

Basically, the first rule of engineering, whether for a bridge of for a small box, is to make sure that the weight it is ment to support has a direct path to the floor/ground. COrrect construction methods and proper location of sides/legs, backs adn aprons will hld the weight just fine. All materials, whether man made(plywood or MDF) or natural are strongest laterally(in the vertical) position. THis is especially true of man made sheet goods.

Generally, a tank sits on its frame which is about 1" wide and located only ar the edges of the tank. Therefore, a ggodly portion of the weight of hte tank will be transfered directly throught the sides/ legs of you stand and down to the floor. There most problems occure is with longer spans, exceding probably 2.5 to 3 feet where the top is not firmly supported in the middle. There are a number of ways to accomidate this, from torsion box construction, better jionery at the side/leg to apron (the apron is the piece that goes form each side and is designed to support the top and to keep the sides from wanting to bulge out under pressure) joints, etc.

If you tell me a littel more about your specific application I will be able to help a bit more. I also might be able to help you design something that looks nicer than 2x4's. Also, how fgamilar are you with woodworking tools and terminology.
 

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58 gallon Oceanic. I think it's 36 x 18.

I'm fairly familiar with woodworking techniques and terminology. My tools:
  • Router
    drill press
    circular saw
    jigsaw
    assorted hammers and screw drivers
    assorted clamps

:D
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Art,

the important thing in this situation will be to have adequate suport spaning the length of the tank. THis is not a big deal since by the time you take into account overhang and such your rails(the supports) will only be 32-34 inches long or so. Rails this short dont actually need to be that beefy to support the weight, as long as they are well supported at hteir ends.

You have many optioins here, mostly based on how you want hte stand to look. What did you have in mind? You give me ideas and I will figure out a way:)
 

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I didn't know that was your profession Dennis. That's cool.

I might be back with some questions later since the Mr. said he would build me a stand for a 20H tank sometime this year (I don't trust the stand it's on). He's very good with woodworking (I swear he's in competition with some of the big guys for tools... :wink: ), but it would be nice to get a few of the more important details specific for a stand. Maybe you've already covered them above, so I'll read a little closer first. :)
 

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Jan,

Ask away, thats why I started this:)

Steve,

Very nice actually. That is a very ingenious way to use the materials. Strong yet attractive at the same time. I like that the sides are not flat. Very clever indeed:)
 
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The stands I build are made of a plywood subframe with a hardwood or pine facing, I do use pine a lot but they always have a bit more style than I see at LFSs, like tombstone panel doors (my personal favorite).

For a four foot length on a stand for say a 90, there's basically a subframe of furniture grade birch plyood 1.5" thick, the rim support all around with vertical supports on all four corners and in two places along the front and back with 3/8" leveling feet under each vertical support. All joints are biscuit joints with 30 minute expoxy on the plywood structure and waterproof glue on the face frames. I also stagger the joints on the subframe. I have a friend at ISU who did the math on the last one and figures it would support a load of over 1500 pounds safely.

The stand my 75 sits on is constructed entire out of #2 pine and is basically a 1" X 4" pine subfrane with a 1 X 4 over lay, the back is completely open except for the vertical supports as described above and the sides have raised panels (faux doors) to match the three on the front, of which the middle is a faux door. It's actually the first stand I built, all joints are biscuits joints with 30 minute expoxy, all vertical corners are held by epoxy and 3" stainless steel deck screws. I don't have any pictures of the finshed stand but here's a pic of the stand before I put the doors on the front, already holding the tank. Scuse the mess, the tank just got setup in the middle of a remodel (which is not the best way to remodel or set up a tank BTW).

I have a bunch of film from other projects I need to get developed, I just finished a nice oak stand for 30 "cube" with a white pickling that came out rather nice.

 
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