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Old 11-12-2002, 06:10 PM   #1
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What type finish for DIY hood/canopy

I'm getting ready to start on a hood for my 20gal tank. I will probably use birch, poplar, or maple 1/2" plywood. One question is there anything particular as far as finishes go? Anything I should stay away from or anything that works better. Can I just go with any stain and some poly over it. Thanx for any help.
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Old 11-12-2002, 06:49 PM   #2
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Re: What type finish for DIY hood/canopy

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Can I just go with any stain and some poly over it. Thanx for any help.
Thats exactly what I used.

If I had a chance to go back I would have painted the inside a white and the outside a dark wood stain. But instead I did the entire think in the wood stain.

The white would reflect more light back into the tank in theory.
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Old 11-12-2002, 08:32 PM   #3
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Not just in theory, my friend! I painted the inside of mine white, it reflects a LOT of light. Made mine from poplar, outside dark stain, no polyurethane (no real reason for no poly, it just matches the rest of the furniture better). I do wish I was more skilled with wood, there are some light leaks. Oh yeah for the white paint you want outdoor paint due to the high humidity and water splashing.
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Old 11-12-2002, 09:16 PM   #4
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canopy

In addition to what has already been said, I can only add one thing. Be sure you use a gloss white instead of flat. If you do have any light leaks, you might seal them with some white silicone. That way you won't be able to see light from the outside of the canopy.
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Old 11-12-2002, 11:34 PM   #5
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corvuscorax said:

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I do wish I was more skilled with wood, there are some light leaks. Oh yeah for the white paint you want outdoor paint due to the high humidity and water splashing.
Hey guys, food for thought:

A buddy of mine made his own canopy (to save cash) but it soon turned out that his lights were "gutless". He was dragging his feet about buying new lighting because he's "thrifty"...

He ended up applying a new coat of polyurethane and then, while it was still wet, he applied some aluminum foil (Reynolds Wrap shiny side out).

It cranked up the light intensity but would even fix light leaks.

Just a thought.
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Old 11-13-2002, 12:11 AM   #6
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If you use Poly make sure it is an exterior type or it will peel.
If you really want to put a finish on to protect the top I would recommend a satin spar varnish, or gloss if you like it real shiny
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Old 11-13-2002, 10:35 PM   #7
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The poly I might use is stuff I've got at work. It is sherwin williams "gym floor" finish. A few coats of this stuff and it is like your work is encased in plastic lol. Very durable and most likely waterproof..in case anyone is interested.
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Old 11-13-2002, 11:25 PM   #8
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exterior poly

Home Depot also sells an exterior grade of poly called Sill and Spar. It's very good. I used it on the boat and it has held up well for over 2 years.
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Old 11-14-2002, 12:18 AM   #9
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i plan on building a canopy to house my mh/pc/no lighting setup. thanks for all the ideas to make the lighting go as far as it can.
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