My DIY Indestructable Tank Stand

Discussion in 'I made this!' started by Telgar, Dec 24, 2009.

  1. Telgar

    Telgar Snowflake Eel

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    Several members have asked for more details about the stand in my overdue 90 gal build thread so here goes nothing.....




    My 90 gal Stand Build



    This stand is being built for a standard 90 gallon aquarium with measurements of 48”L x 18”W 24”H. I like things simple so I have over engineered the strength of this stand while significantly simplifying the build process at the same time.
    The stand will be built using standard 4”x4” lumber. I am going to keep the math simple and use dimensional measurements instead of actual product size (a 4x4 is not actually 4” but 3 5/8th x 3 5/8” due to shrinkage as the wood dries out.)
    I would highly suggest acclimating the wood to the room it will eventually be in for at least 2 weeks prior to building the stand if at all possible, this will help prevent problems with shrinking and twisting after the stand is built due to humidity differences. DO NOT use pressure treated lumber, it will cause the stand to crack and twist as it loses it’s very high moisture content in your climate controlled environment.
    This stand may be built in 2 configurations to suite your style and preferences. Because we are using 4x4 lumber a center brace is not needed for support allowing an open cabinet or you can add the support brace anyway which will allow you to add doors to it if desired.
    I am going to make a 28” high stand in this build. It is very easy to adjust the height to your preference, determine how high you want your stand to be and subtract 8” from that. This is the length you will cut your leg pieces to so you get the correct height.

    CUT LIST:
    Qty. Description length
    4 top and bottom rails 4” x 4” x 49.5”
    4 (6)* cross rails 4” x 4” x 19”
    4 (6)* legs (will determine stand height) 4” x 4” x 20”
    (6)* needed pieces if using center brace


    Assembly:

    First, we need to notch both ends of each cross rail so they will eventually lock into the top and bottom rails. Measure in 4” from the end and make a 2” deep cut with a circular saw, now remove all excess material from the cut to the end of the cross rail, (I used a sharp wood chisel to clean up any rough spots) repeat process on the other end until all pieces are completed.
    [​IMG]

    We need to do the same thing on the 4 top and bottom rails. If using the center brace these rails will also need a 4” wide 2” deep notch cut out centered at 24 ¾” on each of the 4 rails.
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    Next we are going to add the legs to the cross rails to create our support assemblies; Please take your time to make sure these are straight and square or your stand will not be level, there will be either 2 or 3 of these depending on which configuration you are building. For this we need 2 legs and 2 cross rails, use wood glue to stick the legs to the cross rails and then add a 3” deck screw thru each notch into the legs to secure them. Drive the screws until they are flush with the wood surface. Repeat until all your support assemblies are complete.
    [​IMG]
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    Finally we are going to fit our support assemblies into the top and bottom rails to complete the stand. Lay out the 2 bottom rails with the cutouts facing up, insert the support assemblies into the bottom rail notches to insure a clean tight fit. Add the top rails to the assembly to insure fit. Once all the joints are clean and tight remove the top rails and support assemblies so they can be glued and secured in place with a few 2” deck screws added to each post connection while using a level and a speed square to make sure the stand doesn’t look like the leaning tower of pizza.
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    Let the glue dry overnight and it will require a wrecking ball to destroy your new stand…. Enjoy J

    6 people like this.
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  3. divott

    divott Giant Squid

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    thats a solid stand telgar. excellent craftsmanship and planning. there will be no failures with it. as a side note , the actual size of the lumber isnt from shrinkage , its from being "dressed" , they get the lumber in its 4x4 form ,then plane the roughness off of it.
  4. iLLwiLL

    iLLwiLL Sailfin Tang

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    Dam, that thing is a tank! You probably could have done without the center brace with only a 4' span tho and that would have left way more space underneath.

    ~Will.
  5. Telgar

    Telgar Snowflake Eel

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    your absolutely right, but there ws actually a bit of method to my madness :devil:

    I built the stand stronger than necessary, as well as a little lower than normal.
    The stand is only 24" high which allows me to stand in front of it and do any and all maintenance tasks without getting on a clumsy stool ;D
    I was able to do this because the tank has a closet in the wall behind it that i'm using as a mini fish room.
  6. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Great work, I think you could easily support the original Hummer on that stand.
  7. Sco-tie

    Sco-tie Bristle Worm

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    lol nice one i made my stand for my 6ft out of 70mm timber and its quite strong and i used the same techniques u did nice job
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  9. Nealio

    Nealio Coral Banded Shrimp

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    Do you think a 6' tank like a 125 could be built without a center brace using your configuration?
  10. horkn

    horkn Giant Squid

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    And I thought my DIY stand for my DIY plywood epoxy tank was over built!

    Remembering how cheaply my AGA mission stand was built for my 90g I had, you won't ever have any issues with that stand.
  11. Telgar

    Telgar Snowflake Eel

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    Absolutely :)
  12. horkn

    horkn Giant Squid

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    You could easily use 2x6's the tall way for the top of the stand instead like I did. I think a 2x6 that way actually has more strength than a 4x4 does.

    I put a center brace in the back of my 62" long stand, but I know it was not necessary at all.
  13. Sco-tie

    Sco-tie Bristle Worm

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    you can use I beams across the top and go 8ft with out any need fro a center brace, leaves lots of room for a big sump
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  15. Nealio

    Nealio Coral Banded Shrimp

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    That's what I figured. Since there was no load in any direction other than down, there wasn't a need for extra thickness as long as it was properly braced to prevent bowing or deflection front to back..
  16. seabass1

    seabass1 Montipora Digitata

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    Thanks Telgar....so 24" high, no center brace needed? Have you finished one build completely like with plywood/oak/whatever covering? Not that it needs it. I'm using your design for my 90g frag....doesn't need to be pretty. As a matter of fact, it'll probably be best just to leave the sides open & no doors. It'lll be noisey, but I have my tanks in my small 9X9 livingroom.

    You know, the way I see it, this design is stronger, probably cheaper & less time consuming to build than the crap particle board you get from the LFS.

    YOU THE MAN TELGAR! 8)

    (What I meant was, from a manufacturing standpoint like in a factory or carpentry shop).
  17. Telgar

    Telgar Snowflake Eel

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    I have not finished it off like that, but it would be extreamely easy to "skin" it and add a set of doors :)

    just a note: if your gonna put equipment under it make it slightly higher than 24" or it will be a very tight squeeze and then you'll be cussin me out :p
  18. Giannis86

    Giannis86 Spanish Shawl Nudibranch

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    now thats one crazy stand!!
    I like the woodworking an how you assembled the unit.

    I bet you could easily put an extra tank on top of it ;D
  19. ingtar_shinowa

    ingtar_shinowa Giant Squid

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    Yeah I just decided to be 6'4" so i have not those type of issues :crown:
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  21. Telgar

    Telgar Snowflake Eel

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    lucky you, sadly I was cursed to be 5'8" on my tippy toes :(
  22. reefmonkey

    reefmonkey Giant Squid

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    HAHA! Overkill! I love it! Forget the Hummer, you could probably use it as a block to change tires on a loaded semi. You definately don't have to worry about your 90 crashing down for sure. Excellent!
  23. seabass1

    seabass1 Montipora Digitata

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    Used Telgars design for my 2-90's. If it would've been particle board, who knows what would of happened during these crazy SoCal earthquakes!!
    THANKS TELGAR!!! :beer: :victory:
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  24. Telgar

    Telgar Snowflake Eel

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    LOL, new thread title: My Earthquake Approved Indestructable Tank Stand!

    PS. Glad you got thru those quakes in 1 piece :)
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2010