To frame or not to frame 90g canopy?

Discussion in 'I made this!' started by Slammed01, Aug 5, 2012.

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  1. Slammed01

    Slammed01 Fire Worm

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    Hello all, just got my leds and in the process of building a canopy to hang them. What are the pros/cons to making a canopy with or without a frame? I see some framed online and some use the siding as the frame and mount 1x2s or 2x2s to hold it on the tank lip. (how most manufactured canopies are)

    Ive been working with 1x2s but the last few boards have cracked...so frustrating!!!

    Looking for pros and cons. Any recommendation on why these cheapo 1x2s are splitting? Would 2x2 be better? Thanks!

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  3. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Not sure about the differences with the possibility of less weight with a framed canopy since you can skin it to complete. The best way to keep your wood from splintering it you are using screws is to drill holes slightly smaller in diameter than the screws.
     
  4. Kevin_E

    Kevin_E Giant Squid

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    Yes, pre-drill. I am framing mine just to hide the nails on the 1/4" skin.
     
  5. cosmo

    cosmo Giant Squid

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    +1, smaller screws and pre drill, you can also use some liquid nails to help. The led fixture is really light so it doesn't have to be overly strong.
     
  6. Kevin_E

    Kevin_E Giant Squid

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    I used 3/4" by 1-1/2" to frame my canopy. I can lift it up with my pinky finger. I used 1/4" birch to skin it. You can see the nails where I tacked it into the frame. I will hide those by 45* edge trim to the corners and attaching it will a liquid glue. Be sure to apply a poly-coat of some sort when you are finished staining/painting. I painted the interior white to provide a reflective surface for light.
     

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  7. hingedthinker

    hingedthinker Fire Worm

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    I am not a pro carpenter (my grandfater was), but I have built my fair share of cabinets, and done lots of framing, building sheds, play houses, etc. From what I have seen on this site and others in this hobby, most people massively and unnecessarily overbuild stands and canopies.

    If you are using 1/4" sheet to skin it, I would recommend using 1x2" hardwood like poplar for the frame on a 90g. Invest in a kreg's pock screw jig ($30) from the big box stores and a box of screws and save yourself the headaches.
     
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  9. Kevin_E

    Kevin_E Giant Squid

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    Edit: I see what you mean and I agree. I went wither the larger frame because I had these materials lying around. When I planned my design, it was with thinner material.
     
  10. AZDesertRat

    AZDesertRat Giant Squid

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    I used 1x2 oak countersunk and predrilled. I have found over the last 30+ years in the hobby whitewoods do not last long in the moist air inside a canopy. My current system is 9 years old and the oak is still in very good shape.
     
  11. Kevin_E

    Kevin_E Giant Squid

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    I used a hardwood for mine, except for the skin. A few coats of of outdoor deck poly will help protect the skin.
     
  12. SkyFire

    SkyFire Clown Trigger

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    I used epoxy paint (thie kind for boats) for the interior of my canopy.