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Steeldrifter

The Aquarium project

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Very nice man. You need to come to the dark side and go with the salt. I have a 46g bow front reef and I love it. I could sit in front of that thing for hours!

salt tanks are pretty cool. We have a 20 gallon tank that is salt. You can watch those things for hours, there are always things that you didn't notice before, and one good thing about salt is that everything is living, the rocks have coral on them and the sand has all kinds of things in it. Also I think the fish are prettier.

 

Yea I have a cole tang, blennies, and a dottyback. I have some corals, a brittle star, hermits, emerald crabs, 4 kinds of snails and 4 peppermint shrimp. It is a ball to watch them all and I see something new and different everytime.

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I love the looks of saltwater tanks, but I don't love the cost & maintenance :( By the time you get everything set up with tank/coral/live rock/skimmer/sump it's easy to drop a couple grand on one. That's pretty much why I haven't gone to salt. Some of the more recent Malawi & Peacock cichlids that are popular now are just as colorful as saltwater species now a days so I'll be sticking with cichlids for now. Not ruling out ever having a salt tank :D but just not right now.

 

Steve,

 

I had some cichlids as well before. I had one for more than 6 years. He was such a mean little...well you know. He killed everything a put in the tank with him including other cichlids. He finally got his way, I gave up, and he got a whole 29g tank to him until he died. Boy was he an @$$.

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Well back on this project as time permits. Picked up all the lumber for the frame yesterday as well as a Kreg jig jr (very happy with that tool!)

 

stand1q.jpg

 

Started by making two frame structure for top and bottom that were identical. I decided to do them this way so the 2x4 uprights would mount in between the top & Bottom frames so the wood would be supporting the weight rather than any weight on the fasteners.

 

stand2ya.jpg

 

 

First upright mounted....

 

stand3.jpg

 

Couple of the pocket screws done with the new jig...

 

stand4.jpg

 

I also decided to double up the corner 2x4's in a "L" shape also pocket screwed in as well as screwed back to side. May be overkill but it's cheap insurance IMO. You can also see the height of the stand in this picture. I never do like to have to bend over to look into a fish tank, and since I'm 6'6" with long arms I can get away with a stand height higher than most people, so I did mine 39" to the bottom of the tank.

 

stand5.jpg

stand6.jpg

 

That's were I'm at right now, will post more later as I get time to get more done on it.

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You can also see the height of the stand in this picture. I never do like to have to bend over to look into a fish tank, and since I'm 6'6" with long arms I can get away with a stand height higher than most people, so I did mine 39" to the bottom of the tank.

 

 

long arms don't actually cover it your 6'6" and can scratch your ankle without bending over :lol:

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Well all the frame is now done. Actually didn't think I would be able to get the entire frame done today but glad I did. Now I can move onto some sanding and then skinning it and laying out all the trim/shelves/power strips etc etc.

 

stand7.jpg

 

stand8.jpg

 

stand9.jpg

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Well started skinning it with some 1/4" red oak wood today. Gonna have a bunch of filling/sanding/staining/poly/repeat to do once I get it all skinned, but I think it's gonna look real nice once it's done. Wiped one area with a damp rag just to see how the grain is going to look.

 

stand10.jpg

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I just decided that is going to be the back of the stand and I am going to start over on skinning.

 

Mainly because the more I look at it I just don't want to deal with any nails at all or trying to fill nail holes with filler/putty. So I think I am going to just turn it around and start over and liquid nail the skin on without any nails at all except for under where the trim goes.

 

Aw well, do it right now matter how long it takes I guess.

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hello steeldrifter,

your aquarium project is amazing.

keep up the good work.

 

joops

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Got a lot done the past day or two. Starting to look like a stand now. I'm very glad I ditched the nails and decided to redo it without any nail heads showing. Hope to have it all skinned by tomorrow so I can start working on the doors.

 

stand11.jpg

 

Although my assistant quit early on me today. I guess she doesn't work a full day on the weekends.

 

mimzy.jpg

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Just letting the final front skin piece dry and then I just have one more side panel to attach and the skinning will be done. Then I can move on to making the doors, filling a few joints, adding trim and sanding. I put a few nails at the very bottom but those will be covered by trim....

 

stand12.jpg

 

 

Picked up the hardware for it last night at Lowe's. I decided on Colonial style hinges and nickle brushed rope style knobs. Since the wood skin is red oak I went with a red oak stain...

 

stand13.jpg

 

 

I also bought some 5 piece tiles. I plan to inlay the tiles in a diamond position into the front of each door and then trim the tile with some wood to add a nice accent on each of the doors...

 

stand14.jpg

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Now have part of the floor in it, and also have one of the doors done and mounted now. I went with a thinner 1.250" oak for the frame of the door to give it a bit sleeker style. Door frames have a double routered edge on the inner side and a single routered edge on the outer. I mitered all the pieces but there still is a small bit of filling that needs to be done. I'm actually very happy with the way the door came out. Even though I am a very hands on type of person and build all sorts of things, wood working just does not fit in with my many years as a welder/metal fabricator so I have always shied away from anything to do with woodworking. And the door was probably one of the biggest worries about this job. So I'm very pleased with the way this is coming out.

 

stand15.jpg

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