Well, I looked at some of the reflectors, and they aren't really what I like. The ones that are 48" are flat with a 90 degree angle for the sides. I can easily do that with cut mirrors and have no metal, and actually have the sides angled rather than at a 90 degree angle for the sides, like maybe 45 degree angles. And can even do a more parabolic type reflector using mirrors. Wood is easy to cut, and would be easy to secure the mirrors as I like them. And getting the cut mirrors is probably cheaper than the almost $40.00 for the single 48" reflector. Either way, it's still in the thinking process, and can't wait to start drawing it up on paper.
Here's other things I'll be doing as well....
I'm also looking at some assorted bulbs online as well. If I put in 4 bulbs, I'd like 2 to be either 5000k or 6500k-6700k, and the other 2 to be the 8000k bulbs used by other well known planted tank pros. Or even do a 5000k, a 6500k-6700k, a 8000k, and a 10000k. But since my first project will be the 55G, which I want to be under 2w/g, I'm only doing a 2 bulb canopy for it. The 75G will have either 6 or 8 bulbs. And 4 in my 29G. But one project at a time, lol.
As for the fans, it's going to have 3 very large, quiet fans, run off a DC
Adapter. And I'll have vents in both the sides of the canopy for fresh air to flow into the canopy, as the fans are blowing the warm air up and out the top. And yes, the entire canopy is going to be sealed in a clear coat, as well as the stand. That way it will look nice, with a nice finish. Also, just above the front doors that will be installed for doing maintenance and feeding, I'll have a piece of glass mounted just above that so there's no chance of water being splashed up on the bulbs, ballast, etc.
As for hiding the trim on the tank, I'm going to make the framework of the stand and canopy so it's the exact same dimensions as the tank top and bottom. Then when I install the side paneling, it will be installed so that all the trim on the tank is covered, and will be rounded with a router so it looks nice. That way, when the tank is set in the base, none of the tank trim will be showing. And it will all be in Cedar.