Silverado61's Stand and Tank build.


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I'm not really sure if anyone will even read this. I just wanted to keep a log on my progress of my 72g stand and tank build.

I have been planning this build for quite some time now. Reading, researching, asking a lot of questions here, a lot doodling on paper, drawing up rough graph blue prints and doing the final drawings of what I wanted it to look like when it's finished.

I started building the frame for the base about two months ago but then the cold snap hit and since I'm doing this in a unheated garage, all work came to a grinding halt.

I have been working on cleaning all the equipment I have on hand that I can use for this build ( sump/fuge, power heads, etc ) and cleaning all the equipment that I used on my 36g tank which mysteriously crashed for reasons I still haven't figured out, I do know it's was nothing I did or neglected to do, and putting it all away for future use.

Mother nature recently gave me a break in the weather for a few days so I had a chance to do some more work on the stand and make some modifications on the design.

Now it's getting colder again so the build is back on hold for a couple more weeks. I checked the Farmers Almanac and it looks like in two weeks or so the temps should stay in the 40's and up so I should be able to work steady on this build. Until then I'll just keep planning and preparing.

Here's a few photo's of what I've done so far:

I'm using 1x4 kiln dried pine boards for all the framing. I got a lot of inspiration from 2quills build including towers on each end of the tank and the light bridge across the top of the tank and towers. but since I don't have the tools or woodworking knowledge that he does, I'm doing the best I can with what I have to work with along with some design changes.

All the boards for the framing have been doubled up and overlapped at each joint using Guerrilla Glue on all contact surfaces. All the boards that are sandwiched (Doubled Up.) are glued, clamped and pneumatically nailed together. Each buttressing joint has been glued, clamped and screwed in place. Each corner joint surface has been reinforced using dowel pins and glue. Once the plywood has been cut to fit the inside of the base I'll do the framing inside the base for the end cabinets. All the screws I'm using are stainless steel and the pneumatic nails are galvanized to prevent rust.

I've done just about as much as I can on the frame for the base. The next step will be installing the plywood inside the cabinet. Since I'm using 3/4" oak on the deck of the stand and I'll have half a sheet left over, I'll be using the other half inside the base.

Here's my plan for the placement of everything in the stand:

In the base, the left cabinet will hold the container of R/O water for top off and it will also house the siphon hoses for water changes. The right cabinet will have the breaker box and GFCI outlets to plug in all the equipment. The inside will be double walled so the outlet boxes won't be exposed to any splash from the sump/fuge. The main section will house the 35g sump/fuge with enough room to remove it through the front if needed without taking the whole stand down.

Because I'm too lazy to get on my knees to reach the switches to control equipment, I'll be installing them in the right side tower. It will also hold the light controller for the LED's and the speed control for the return pump since it will also have the feed delay switch. The left tower will be for misc. storage. Meds, dosing, food, testing supplies, etc.

The light bridge will of course hold the coral LED lights which will be on drawer glides so that I can pull them out for cleaning and maintenance on the tank.

If I planed the stand build right, it should all be able to be taken apart in four pieces (not including the tank) at a moments notice for repairs, upgrades and improvements.

Once all the framing and electrical are finished, I'll paint the inside with white marine paint so the lighting for the sump/fuge will be amplified. Then I'll close everything up using either birch or poplar wood. Finishing with stain and polyurethane.

Well, That's it for now. I'll update this in a couple of weeks once the weather allows me to continue my work.

As always, any input or ideas will be greatly appreciated.

Till then: Always learning.
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Just thought I'd update my tank stand build with a few photos.

Here's the electrical panel. The hole to the right is where I'll be feeding all my cords from the tank and sump/fuge area. Each outlet is controlled by a separate switch so I'll only have to turn off two systems at a time. I just hope eight outlets will be enough. If not, the panel can be removed for upgrades.

This is a side view to show the double walled construction.

Sump side view.

This end of the stand will hold the ATO system

One of the frames for the towers that will go on either side of the tank and support the hood for the LED lighting system.

After a few more adjustments and tweeking I'll start the outside of the stand. I'm going to cover it in Aspen with Birch trim and Oak doors. I'm going to use the same color stain on the whole thing to give it a three different color scheme.

Here are the three colors I'm looking at. Thinking of going with the "Special Walnut" so the it contrasts with the woodwork in the house yet remain neutral enough in case I ever move.

Finally got the overflow boxes for the 72g!

Well? What do you think so far? Any ideas? Comments?


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Fowlr with a few corals and lots of inverts. I was thinking of a lobster but I need to find out what they can go with.

Thanks Seth. It went on the back burner for a while because of the weather but now I'm getting all fired up to do it again.
I'm being very meticulous about it. Checking and rechecking everything. Making sure all stages of the build go in the right order so I don't have to Gerry Rig anything in. A little nerve racking at times but it's worth it. I think the electrical was the hardest part so far but I've tested it and everything's in the green. I went with a little redundancy using GFCI's and a built in breaker but I think it's better to be safe than sorry.

With my work schedule it's going to be "a couple hours here, a day there" each week.


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Nothing wrong with a slow build. Take the time, do it right. Do some research. Find out some good methods. It's just a hobby, not a living - so take the time.
I like your electrical panel you got there. Definitely reminds me of 2quills build. I also like how it's not one big unit, but four - which will be much easier to move.
Fwiw, a tank with any coral in it is a reef tank, and those fish rules apply.


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I did use some ideas from 2quills build but I used them for inspiration only. I figured if I turned the GFCI's away from the sump/fuge area and put in a "wet wall" it would protect it better.

No insult to you 2quills but I'm actually using your build to come up with improvements on this build. Not that your build wasn't a good one. It was actually quite inspirational. I extended the canopy over the columns so the weight is on the columns not the tank. Also, since my tank is a bow front, the weight can't be on the tank.

I'm using this design so that all I have to do is remove 16 screws (eight to remove the canopy and eight to remove the columns) and the whole assembly comes apart in four pieces for ease of maintenance and upgrades. I added the bearing studs in the center of the stand because to me, the weight of the tank would eventually cause the stand to bow downward.

I'm making the doors in front large enough so that if I ever need to get the sump/fuge out for any reason it would make it easier. The stand is also tall enough, wide enough and deep enough to make it easy for me to reach in and do any work and not have to cram anything in.

I am, however, taking a lot of ideas from 2quills as far as the plumbing goes. I've studied that part of his build extensively and can find no flaws..... yet. lol. Well done. I'm still debating whether or not to use PVC or flex tubing to eliminate as many bends as possible to increase flow on the returns and overflow. I think if I heat the flex tubing up just enough I can make gradual bends without creating any kinks in the line. If I use reinforced tubing, that should make it much easier.


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Just a quick update:

I started the bottom frame for the canopy.

I remeasured the tank height and found I was 1/4" too high on the columns so I had to trim it off with the table saw. Just glad I found out now instead of after I put the aspen skin on. Whew!

If it wasn't for the weather going nuts or my work schedule I think I'd be a lot farther along than I am.

Here's a couple of new pics.

After it's done and the tank is installed I figure I'll have about 6 inches between the tank and each column to clean the glass.

For a 72g this stand is turning out to be a monster. It's 84" wide 24" deep. I'm going to make the canopy 20 inches tall for a total of 81" high.

I'm still debating whether or not I'm going to make my own rock sculpture for the tank. I have to decide soon cause that's going to take a couple of months to do by itself.

I also can't make up my mind if I'm going to use cheato in the sump or make an upflow algae scrubber. I know I can't do both.


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Originally Posted by trigger40 http:///t/397211/silverado61s-stand-and-tank-build#post_3543610
WOW nice stand. better than mine lol. im gona follow.
Thanks trigger. I've also followed yours. I don't know about better but definitely a little bigger. lol.

I originally thought of using 3/4" oak for the table top but decided with all the bracing I was using that it was overkill so I went with 1/2". The second half of the sheet is being used for the canopy. I'm using 1/2" BC inside the base.


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Looking good...nothing like being handy and able to do that kind of stuff. I'm following along, I can't hardly wait to see it all set up and running.


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Originally Posted by silverado61 http:///t/397211/silverado61s-stand-and-tank-build#post_3543626
Thanks trigger. I've also followed yours. I don't know about better but definitely a little bigger. lol.

I originally thought of using 3/4" oak for the table top but decided with all the bracing I was using that it was overkill so I went with 1/2". The second half of the sheet is being used for the canopy. I'm using 1/2" BC inside the base.
lol thanks, but i have a question. how big is your sump gona be for your tank? be cause i am gona start my next tank wich will also be a 75 and i have a 15g tank being 24''L, 12"W, and 12"H. would this be an apropriat size sump to keep a well established tank? and i like the color wood you picked for the tank. and idont think overkill is bad. lol


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This is the sump/fuge that I'm using. I think it measures 18"x18"x48" or very close to it. The bigger the sump, the more water volume, the easier the whole system is to control.

It's got four chambers for:
1- Overflow.
2- Live rock and cheato or an upflow algae scrubber.
3- Protein skimmer.
4- Return pump.

As far as overkill, if I keep this up, it's going to take four people just to move the base. lol. Trying to cut down on weight a little. That's why I went with Aspen instead of oak. It's strong yet lightweight.