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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
2.5 Gallon DIY Tank Journal (In progress)

Started by going to my LFS and picking up a 2.5 gallon tank ($12). I used ford blue to paint the back of the tank. I first gave it a very light coat of paint and let it dry for a couple of hours. I eventually ended up with about 4-5 coats, gave it a couple of days to dry and then put some clear duck-tape like tape to protect it from scratches.



After reading articles on nano-reef.com, I decide to make some blueprints of the hood I wanted. I didn't have any of the equipment to do any of the cutting so I took my plans to my local Lumber yard (Southern Lumber Company) and had them do all the cuttings for $15. I had a guy named Mario do a great job for me, and everyone else in the store made it seem like the cuts were not easy to do. I don't know if this is not a regular cutting job, but you might have to twist the persons arm to get them to help you. This is my first time ever working with wood, so I was completely clueless. I bought Walnut, which was a bad choice because the wood came to about $30 dollars. A much better choice would have been Alder, which was half as much and had a nice grain for the dark stain I was going to apply. You could go even less with some Poplar or Pine. The most expensive cut is the rabbits, and I asked for 45 degree cuts for the edges.





The rest of the stuff I got to finish the hood included Minwax Ebony Stain and Clear Satin protective finish. Check out http://www.minwax.com/shoptalk/resources/basics.cfm for information on the steps to stain and finish the wood. I am using Gorilla waterproof glue. Since it expands as it dries I bought two 90 degree corner clamps. Some white paint for the inside of the hood and some sand paper came to about $20. The bookworm lights are going to give me 2 X 13watt compact fluorescents that come sealed in tubes. http://www.paperdirect.com/PaperDirect_PF401/productDetail.asp?superprodid=4339 has them on sale for $12.



These are the cuts from the lumbar yard.



This is the corner glued together using the corner clamps. Takes about 4-6 hours to dry.

 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Next I glued the top on.



After the glue dried I painted the inside of the hood white.



I then added the stain and finish and connected the lights.



This shows the rabbits in detail.



Glass cover so there is no evaporation.



And the finished hood. Now for the base.

 

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i remember the first time i saw this, and i thought , "that is so pimp." after all this time, guess what? still pimp.
 

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Interesting lamps...

The paper direct source does not seem to carry those "book worm" lights anymore. And they're $29.99 elsewhere online. Dang. Anyone else see a source for these?
 
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