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Old 07-02-2005, 08:22 PM   #1
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DIY 55 gal stand. Center supports needed?

So I've got a standard 55 gallon glass aquarium. Using the garf.org wizard, it appears that neither my top frame of bottom frame need an extra support in the middle, yet it calls for an upright support on the front middle and rear middle. I'm hesitant about not adding them in. On my DIY 29 gal, I put a top frame support in the middle.

So, my question to those of you with experience: Should I frame top supports? I've heard that you should have one every 15-18" (which would be 2 or 3 for a 55 gal). Framing will be done with standard stud 2x4. Top will be 3/4" ply. Finishing will be 1/4" finishing ply.

I want to use the bare minimum materials. I'm at 5 8' 2x4's. Adding even one frame support will push me to 6. What do you all recommend?
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Old 07-02-2005, 08:32 PM   #2
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Ok, nevermind. I can't read right. lol. It seems that it will require two top frame braces. I think I'm ok now, but I'll still take opinions and suggestions.
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Old 07-02-2005, 09:15 PM   #3
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i built a stand for a 55gal, using the garf plans, and i threw caution to the wind, and didn't use them, i have had the stand in use for 2yrs, going on 3 with out any problems, its sold as rock.

just wish my furniture making skills were better back then because i am not happy with it at all (it was my first actual carpentary project since 8th grade shop class) and i am thinking about building a new one, and swapping stands. but it will do just fine without middle supports. i just used the 4 at the corners, and glued and screwed it together.
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Old 07-03-2005, 12:31 AM   #4
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My 29 gal stand took the same approach and it's rock solid. Of course, it's shorter and only uses 1 brace (in the top frame center). It's highly over-engineered I believe. Both myself (240 lbs) and my brother in-law (260 lbs) say on it with a 5 gallon bucket of water (~40 lbs). At the 500+ lbs we were putting on, it was rock solid.

What about L-brackets? I've seen more than one stand that used them for extra strength? I haven't seen the need in this type of frame. I use 2 #8 3" screws per contact, with wood glue. No rocking in any way I push it. Of course, I'm a perfectionist when it comes to woodworking so everything is squared out nicely and I'd like to think that helps a lot.
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Old 07-03-2005, 02:07 AM   #5
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well if something is perfectly square then wight is evenly distributed to the entire beam/2x4. i did use 2 L brackets, but simply to add a smaller 2x4 [it doesn't quite reach the bottom framing.] so i would have something to securely mount the door hinges too.

i didn't find them necessary at all for anything else. i guess some people would rather be safe than sorry even though it makes little sense to use them in an aquarium stand, if all the joints are built correctly.
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