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Looking for advice on new tanks


Mr Gumby
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First of all no I'm not talking how do I cycle a tank 🙂

Building work is nearly complete on my new extension/conservatory/fish room (in my mind its a fish room, the better half isn't aware of that.....yet)

I have a perfect spot for fit 4 double stacked tanks, 36" long, 18" tall and 12" deep 28 gallon US 33.5 gallon UK. I'm thinking the lower tanks will sit forward 6 inches for easy maintenance and a slightly deeper footprint for extra stability.

So here are the questions

What would be the minimum thickness for the load bearing timber supports? (there would be a central support between the tanks)

Seriously tempted to go with UG filters but what would be minimum depth of gravel on top for basic plants (crypts, Val, dwarf sag etc)

thanks in advance, your sage advice is always welcome

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On 10/13/2022 at 4:58 AM, Mr Gumby said:

What would be the minimum thickness for the load bearing timber supports? (there would be a central support between the tanks)

If built correctly with proper cross support I would say 2”x2” could be used. But I would recommend 2x4’s. 
Congrats on the new fishroom 

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I would overbuild the stand. 2X4s would be my minimum. It's better to be too strong than not strong enough. As to the depth of gravel, anything from an inch or so would be fine. If you've already got the tanks or have a good source for them, then kudos. If not, there's a YouTuber called Serpa Designs who recently posted a video on making 28-gallon tanks using Ikea precut glass. Video below. The dimensions might be a bit different than yours, but I thought I'd post it here anyway, just in case.

 

 

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On 10/13/2022 at 9:04 AM, gardenman said:

I would overbuild the stand. 2X4s would be my minimum. It's better to be too strong than not strong enough. As to the depth of gravel, anything from an inch or so would be fine. If you've already got the tanks or have a good source for them, then kudos. If not, there's a YouTuber called Serpa Designs who recently posted a video on making 28-gallon tanks using Ikea precut glass. Video below. The dimensions might be a bit different than yours, but I thought I'd post it here anyway, just in case.

 

 

I am actually leak-testing one of these IKEA glass tanks I put together on Tuesday! Only additional advice I have is to 240-400 grit sandpaper the beveled edges where the silicone actually goes.

 

Anyway, As mentioned - Overbuild. Especially on anything that will have water on it - shifting fluids are a dynamic mess of forces. If you're not confident enough to stand on it and jump around a bit... add more bracing.

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On 10/13/2022 at 2:04 PM, gardenman said:

I would overbuild the stand. 2X4s would be my minimum. It's better to be too strong than not strong enough. As to the depth of gravel, anything from an inch or so would be fine. If you've already got the tanks or have a good source for them, then kudos. If not, there's a YouTuber called Serpa Designs who recently posted a video on making 28-gallon tanks using Ikea precut glass. Video below. The dimensions might be a bit different than yours, but I thought I'd post it here anyway, just in case.

 

 

I've already added this video to my favourites but I managed to find a firm that build tanks for a reasonable cost and negates some of the risk regarding my DIY skills failing and destroying my nice new flooring 🙂

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On 10/13/2022 at 2:36 PM, Pepere said:

On both of my rimmed display tanks I can slip an envelope under the tank for most of the center span.  
 

there is no contact whatsoever between the bottom of the rim and the top of the cabinet it sits on.

 

That being the case there is no weight bearing, and no support is needed at all. All bearing is on the side of the tank.

@Pepere so if I go with 2*4 on the load bearing timbers and 2*2 on the cross members I'm good?

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I'd go with all 2X4s as the price difference between 2X4s and 2X2s is pretty small. Stronger is better in my opinion.  Too strong is better than not strong enough. A lot of 2X2s are just ripped 2X stock and tend to be pretty unstable. Finding good, straight, unwarped, 2X2s is not the easiest task in the world. Finding good 2X4 stock isn't the easiest, but it's easier than finding good 2X2s in any quantity.

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On 10/13/2022 at 3:38 PM, Pepere said:

Here is a pic of the cabinet I built for my 29 gallon display tank.

 

CD30C914-1E72-412D-9606-96808DDA166E.jpeg.5c2e0398c74cf78384c7710ad97eda81.jpeg
 

Tounge and groove beadboard makes up the back and side panels, 1 x 3s glued and screwed to the tops and bottoms of the panels.  1x2 crossbrace on the top reinforced with molding glues and screwed in place with trim screws.  Gluing is very important for load transference rigidity.

The front  crossbrace is more for rigidity of the structure to prevent racking than it is for beam strength.

this construction is overkill for the weight of this tank.

 

That my friend is a really nice job!

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On 10/18/2022 at 7:18 AM, Mr Gumby said:

So taking into account the price of timber and my DIY skills had a rethink.

Google turned up this and I was wondering if anyone uses something similar?

I'd probably swap the MDF for treated ply and cut a yoga mat to sit under the tanks

Screenshot_20221018-151322.png.7c4bf7b5fd9f10a3a5fdf0ea1b8f970a.png

I use the Gladiator EZ connect shelving which holds about 450kg/1000lbs per shelf and it has held up well and was super easy to assemble. Also not the worst looking thing in the world. A similar kind of thing to what you have posted here. 

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