Has anyone ever built there own tank?

Discussion in 'Do It Yourself (DIY)' started by zippyjr123, Apr 19, 2008.

  1. zippyjr123

    zippyjr123

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    We are thinking of building our own tank, because we are planning on building it in the wall. I was wondering if anyone has ever tried. If so what are the pros and cons of it.
    Thanks
    Rose
     
    zippyjr123, Apr 19, 2008
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    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Do you mean actually buying pieces of glass and sticking them together yourself? Or buying a tank and putting it in the wall?

    I don't know of anyone that has built their own tank, but there are plenty of people who have put tanks in walls that should be able to help.
     
    Bifferwine, Apr 19, 2008
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  3. zippyjr123

    zippyjr123

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    well we were thinking of acrylic pieces,not glass. My husband seems to be in the DIY mood, I think just getting a tank would be easier,and safer, but its an idea,but it would be put in the living room wall that is where it would go.
     
    zippyjr123, Apr 19, 2008
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  4. zippyjr123

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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  5. zippyjr123

    HAWKS12thMAN NWKRC THUG!

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    Imagine you wake up to go to work, you walk down stairs and step into 90 gallons of water flooding your living room! The house stinks of murdered fish and dead live rock. Build the stand and the inset to the wall. Build a 15 gallon fuge. PLEASE dont build a DT tank. That has disater written all over it. You can find large tanks really cheap and refinish them.
     
    HAWKS12thMAN, Apr 19, 2008
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    RyanG ^*Eternal Dumbass*^

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    DONT use acrylic it gets scratched super easy and is way harder to bond than glass.
     
    RyanG, Apr 19, 2008
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    fatman

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    Large tanks are easy to make. I would not consider making an in wall tank with anything but the front viewing window in glass or acrylic. I have built and seen built many dozens of large tanks out of plywood and lumber with the front viewing window in both acrylic and glass. Glass being more common as it is cheaper. The taller the tank the more precision required in your framing and plywood joints. The full interior is covered with a two part epoxy enamel. Cost is approximately $65 per gallon. That will easily do a 8' x 3' x 4' tank. I have never seen the paint sold in smaller than two parts of one gallon each. Other than that you need some fiberglass tape for joints and Bondo (auto body filler) for holes and cracks and depressions in plywood plus sand paper. Pretty simple actually. Use to build a lot of them years ago for LFS display tanks. There is a wood rim all around the front where the glass is held up against a layer of dry silicone caulking by water pressure. No it is not silicon-ed into place. The pressure of the column of water presses it firmly against the silicone and it does not leak. The windows in large public aquarium are typically also placed in this manner, as are windows in large commercial airplanes . You must wedge a board against the window pane to hold it in alignment until the water is about half full in the tank. Here is an URL for the epoxy paint http://www.aquaticeco.com/subcategories/3048/Epoxy-Paint-1-Gallon/epoxy%20paint/0 URLs for examples are not difficult to find. GARF used to have one posted on their site for a 200 gallon aquarium. It might still be posted.:bounce: It is very simple if you have basic carpentry skills and have a few basic tools. Circular saw, variable speed drill or a screw gun, orbital sander would be nice, a carpenters square, a chaulk line would help, a caulking gun and a few dry cleaning plastic bags (that would have to be explained as it is part of forming your silicone seals). That and a few paint brushes and maybe a paint roller to speed things up and you are all ready to go. Of course you will want a few saw horses so your not on your knees working, and a warm well ventilated place to work when applying the epoxy.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2008
    fatman, Apr 19, 2008
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  8. zippyjr123

    gapiz

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    I have built a few, both glass and acrylic. If you attempt it, you will need to make some kind of fixture of wood which will allow you perfect placement of the pieces to be bonded together. Glass requires pure silicone sealer, which is usually available in larger home improvement centers. Make sure it is pure and has no additives in it such as fungicides or mold inhibitors.

    Acrylic construction is a little bit more complex. It requires perfectly squared edges and sizes, which can be accomplished with a jointer/planer. You also need to purchase Weldon #'s 3 or 4 cements, which are water thin or #16 which is thicker and used where there may be gaps as with internal baffling. I wouldn't use the 16 on external panels. There are various websites to give you examples of tank construction, whether glass or acrylic.

    http://www.melevsreef.com/
    http://saltaquarium.about.com/

    Construction can be quite involved and I would only attempt them if you are very handy in woodworking with the various tools that are needed. You can always purchase custom made. I just recently purchased a custom made tank , with starfire (crystal clear) glass on the front panel from Glasscages.com. They did an excellent job on construction and the price was good. I also purchased an acrylic tank from them, but was not as pleased as with the glass tank. It served it's purpose and is still in use today.

    Good Luck
     
    gapiz, Apr 27, 2008
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    Damseluver

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    It is cheaper to buy one these days. I would only do it if you are trying to acheive some sort of demesions not commercially available or just want a project for your spare time.
     
    Damseluver, Apr 28, 2008
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