another productive day at pork's place. week 3 update...
finished up both bottom deck lids and did a decent sand job on them. had to check the cuts where possible. this is not a good piece to have a tight fit on. gaps could be caulked in if the builder deems appropriate.
again the lower deck lid has to be in the stand before the back verticals supports can be put in. i used a couple of clamps to hold it upright in the center of the stand, so i could slide the verticals in.
this can be a tight fit...that's why i say make sure to overcut the lower deck lid a lil bit so these pieces can be slid into place. this pic shows how i pumped glue into the joint prior screwing. some were tighter than others, and on those i couldn't seperate i just put the glue down then slid the verticals into place.
this is another critical measurement. the stand must be exactly 36" on all 4 corners now, prior to installing these vertical supports.
here's where i bolted in the rear, center vertical. didn't bother to countersink these two pieces, as it's not really necessary. plus, i won't need a socket to get them out. 2 wrenches will work. these bolts are 3/8" x 4. 3 1/2" would have been fine, and that is actually what went into stand #2.
i moved the two center cross members from the design point to better support the 55g. the upper deck does not have these 2 crossmembers. the ones i'm referring to, are the 2 that stand alone...about 1/3 and 2/3 the way down. i put them at 14.5" from the center crossmembers...relative to the side it's on. hope that makes since.
the mainframe skeleton complete. had to kick the lower deck lid into place. again...to tight. i put glue around the the edge where the lid meets the lower deck, then put in #7 ceramic coated 1.5" screws, at each corner.
now for the "stacking" as i've heard it called. if i were to put a tank on one of these stands right now, the tanks weight would be on the screws, instead of the wood. so we remedy this by doubling all vertical supports...sandwiched in between the upper and lower decks. this requires 9 29" 2x4's, per stand.
the tighter these pices are the better...but not imperative. i flipped the stand bottom end up, so i could press the stacked vertical against the upper frame as tightly as possible. on most pieces this wasn't really an issue. i had to beat them into place, cause the fit was pretty tight.
i started w/ the 4 front/rear/outer supports. these had to be screwed into place because bolts won't fit into these,do to the fitment of the side verticals. i started using 4 screws right down the middle, but after doing 2, i discovered i was going to run outa screws. so i went to 3 per vertical to avoid buying another box. as these pieces are screwed instead of bolted, a nice tight fit is needed to keep the weight on the 2x4's and off the screws. all i want the screws to do is hold the vertical in place. the clamp u see is just holding the wood where i want it.
for the other 5 stacked verticals, i'm using 3/8" x 3.5" bolts, w/ 1 inch washers on either end and a nylon prevailing torque fastener [locknut,layman].
there are 2 per beam and they are set at 5 inches from the top or bottom deck. all of these are countersunk and bolted from the outside.
gratuitous nut shot!
and...1 full frame in all her glory. got cut short here today, so i'll have to do the other stand next week. i'll also be adding the top deck lid [i bought these pieces today and had them cut, but soon discovered i had bought the wrong kinda wood, and didn't match the bottom. looks like i'll be making a workbench or something soon]. next week, i'll also be adding the exterior cover and cutting the door holes. i must find someone who sells unfinished cabinet doors. i think i saw some at home depot. doors are beyond my tooling and knowledge. hopefully i'll be able to sand next week and be ready to stain the following week. till then...