Legion's Slow Builder

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Hi there all, new here and only spoken to a few of you guys thus far but as suggested here is the opening post of my "Slow Build" thread  :grin:

Why "Slow Build"?  Well, as my wife would tell you everything I do takes forever, we've spent the best part of our time together living in "a project" rather than a house. Think of it like living in your garage whilst gradually turning it into a man-cave over the years and you've got a good idea :D

So yes, despite all that I've decided to finally start my quest to get salty again, however if there is one thing I've learned from past experience it's that patience is 'the' best virtue when starting a new system.

Now this is even more so the case here as this isn't just a buy-plug-play aquarium job, there will and already has been a fair chunk of DIY to it's design and build, both in husbandry theory and visual appeal.  Both of those aspects have an equal chance of success and failure so it should make for a half decent soap opera if nothing else  lol

Now I read something the other day on here, in one of the member's threads that I respected greatly, he spoke of his own mental health journey    :O   

I am applauding him as I tread my own, now I've not brought this up for any recognition of a similar kind, more that it might explain a lot if you decide to read along on my build thread :lol:

It also means that I can just blame my OCD or perfectionism or introverted side or the black dog if ever I come across as pedantic or extreme or anti-social or disappear for weeks at a time :D

I joke about it, that's just my way and this is my way of saying you're welcome to too, no need to tippy toe around me  :glad:

Really hope everyone gets my sense of humour :S

Anyway back to salty matters  :grin:

I'm going to try to keep things running along on here in a fairly chronological order and it will hopefully contain pictures (we all love pictures  :tongue-love:  ) but also plenty of theory behind the various design aspects as we go along.

However this is a live process soooooo please chirp in with any theories, experience, advice, ideas even criticism  :O  it's all not only welcome but makes for great discussion and learning for everyone.

Many of my theories are just that, my own, many are very well scientifically backed up theories from other sources that I respect. The hobby is far from a one size fits all approach as most of you will know but you'll soon realise I'm quite a disciple of "the reef tank" forum and much of this build will be an experiment in keeping things as simple as possible.

I joined this UK based forum as I'm tired of reading in US gallons  :D   I'm just joking obviously but in another way I'm not.
US reefing issues and solutions are often just that, US issues and solutions.
Obviously it's UK issues and solutions I'm more likely to encounter so it made sense to join up and start a thread here.

End of chapter one...           ;)
Last Edit: May 24, 2020 7:48:15 pm by Legion

Legion

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Reply #1

Chapter two...    :glad:

So this build is going to be based around a very basically built 72"l x 30"w x 24"h display tank, guessing it will be around 160 gallon ish after displacement.  I don't do that it's a 55g 120g 180g thing  :lol:

I had it built a fair few years back now at https://www.junglepets.co.uk/our-retail-store-12-w.asp in Buxton and up to date it's only housed a friend's pond fish over one winter.

I describe it as basic because it is really, I really just pushed them to make me the cheapest no frills but safe tank of that size they could. My idea even right back then was to build it into something different so paying for perfect edges etc was of no interest to me anyway.

If I remember correctly it cost me something like £270 which was very cheap at the time, no idea what tanks cost now mind.

This brings me to my first bit of theory in a way, in that this is a kind of experiment to see how economically this project can be done based on good simple methods and scientific theory ( insert slidey scale of how loosely based they turn out to be here  :geek: )

I'm personally kinda a little bored of seeing amazing build threads by folk who can afford to drop thousands on multiple lights and all the latest gadgets and costly methodologies, I can't afford to these days, certainly can't justify it anyway so it's not really relevant to me. So hopefully this budget project idea will be of interest to other folk like me too.

Oh and hopefully I haven't offended too many folks already  :S lol

I think I'll try and post a pic up now...
Last Edit: May 28, 2020 7:59:04 pm by Legion

Legion

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Reply #2

Not very glamorous at this stage  :O

ajm83

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Reply #3

Enjoying the thread already 👍🏻 love a project

Legion

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Reply #4

The observant ones amongst you will see all the crap in the window sill, I assure you it's not normally like that at all.
I can say that because until about two hours before that photo was taken the tank was sat in that window sill  :D

That was an earlier air-brained idea of mine, based on the theory that that room was our "snug" or snug area, where we go to relax in the evening.
Well, in the evening it's usually dark anyway right?  Well most of the year, ok well some of the year it is...   So blocking out the rather large window with a tank wouldn't be so bad surely? And the tank lighting would light up the room somewhat too obviously...

Stupid, stupid boy    :|

That nearly led to the search for the 4th Mrs L  :P

So this is what the timing is all about here, a deal has been struck that if I shift that @#$%£¥& tank out of that @#$%£¥&  window and properly finish the snug area then I get to build my tank into another part of the room.

Winner, winner  8D

Sound familiar to anyone?  :grin:

Legion

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Reply #5

Enjoying the thread already 👍🏻 love a project

Cool  8D  Thanks ajm 

Legion

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Reply #6

Moving a tank this sort of size is a nightmare as I'm sure many of you will know already.

"I" discovered just how much of a nightmare whilst trying to complete my last money saving aspect of my tank purchase. The saving the delivery charge by fetching it myself idea, well we have our own van, how difficult can it be?  :D

Crikey these things are heavy, specialist equipment heavy unless you've got numbers helping you out (oversight  lol ).  So with just me and the better half to get it into the house we employed a makeshift board and roller system like we were building Stonehenge or something. We've got so much stuff we've accumulated over the years that "might come in handy" we can usually concoct something to solve a problem, like leftover round fence posts  :grin:

So as seen in the first photo, I needed a temporary, movable and pretty strong structure to move the tank about until it's new stand is set up in the opposite end of the room.

Managed to strengthen an old table tucked away in the old piggery at the bottom of the garden (we live in what used to be an old farming settlement).
Cobbled that together with the castored sections of an old medical bed, Bish-Bash-Bosh a movable temporary tank stand (empty tank only obviously)...

Legion

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Reply #7

Right I've bored you all about an old table enough for today, there's leftover chinese downstairs and only me awake to finish it  :P

semiroundel

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Reply #8

We're all watching with baited breath. Well, I am anyway.
I like the reference to the black dog, I'm assuming it's not the Led Zep dog, more the Brenee Brown type....
My own story goes along those sort of lines, for at least the last 25 years anyway.
Taking a wild guess here, but would your sense of humour stretch as far as Royston Vasey?
Last Edit: May 25, 2020 12:18:35 am by semiroundel

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Legion

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Reply #9

We're all watching with baited breath. Well, I am anyway.
I like the reference to the black dog, I'm assuming it's not the Led Zep dog, more the Brenee Brown type....
My own story goes along those sort of lines, for at least the last 25 years anyway.
Taking a wild guess here, but would your sense of humour stretch as far as Royston Vasey?

I think you're about on the money there semiroundel, my comedic range does indeed include occasional trips to Royston but it takes a while to get there, may be quicker once that new road gets built though  :D

Will have to get a few more posts up later I think.  Maybe a bit of DIY stuff with a bit of theory/principle chucked in for good measure  :geek:

Legion

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Reply #10

Dragged this old heavy duty frame out of my bottom of the garden scrap pile a few weeks ago.

I rescued it from the skip when we had a refit at work, it used to be a parcel sack frame, manufacture date stamp is 1969 when they still built things to last with an overkill philosophy  8D

Had to remember where I'd put the legs but thought it would make an ideal tank stand, it is just a little larger than my display but I can work with that.
It has six legs so the central part is supported and the grid design should make for great even weight distribution.

It was all a tad rusty on the surface so it was a case of getting out all the wire brush drill attachments, small grinder sanding attachments, get the face mask on and fill the air with iron oxide  :grin:

Legion

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Reply #11

As you can see the hook sections make it quite an awkward thing to clean up and subsequently paint.
However these angle hooked sections are riveted to the structure and so give the top a large amount of it's structural rigidity, so I didn't want to upset it by removing them after over 50 years in place.

Had to resort to small hand files to get into the nooks and crannies but I was intending on using some "Straight to Rust" Hammerite I had a couple of tins of, use what you got and try and keep.the costs down remember  ;)

So I only had to get the worst of the surface rust off as the Hammerite should sort the rest and I wasn't too concerned over the finish as you won't see the frame once it's in place.
I say I wasn't too concerned about the finish but my perfectionism/OCD was still doing it's, "come on you can do better than that" thing, I do my best to battle it these days in the hope of actually finishing jobs in my lifetime  :lol:


Legion

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Reply #12

Can't have took pics of the legs before they were refurbed but here's a few pics in the old piggery of the frame in various painting stages. Black Hammerite.

The legs were done in silver Hammerite...

"You know it doesn't match don't you."    :evil:

Shut up!!!  No-one will see it   :grin:

Yup, use what you got first, was really disappointed that I ran out of black before finishing the top though, had to nip off to Auto Supplies here in Boza (Bolsover) to get a spray can of the same stuff, last one in stock too.

£8.70 on account if I recall correctly so not the end of the world  :glad:

semiroundel

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Reply #13

As my father used to say: "make do and mend", AKA repurposing nowadays.
That sack frame will make one hell of a stand.
Those that have seen any pics I uploaded of my tank may have noticed the heavy duty angle-iron brackets underneath the MDF base upon which sits the tank with a layer of expanded polystyrene underneath it to even anything out.
In fact the whole tank is mounted (via these brackets) on the party wall with my neighbour, all 350-400 kg of it.
In fact I was so nervous the first night I filled it up, I slept downstairs in the living room should anything happen, don't know what I was thinking I could do if it did fall....

Legion

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Reply #14

As my father used to say: "make do and mend", AKA repurposing nowadays.
That sack frame will make one hell of a stand.
Those that have seen any pics I uploaded of my tank may have noticed the heavy duty angle-iron brackets underneath the MDF base upon which sits the tank with a layer of expanded polystyrene underneath it to even anything out.
In fact the whole tank is mounted (via these brackets) on the party wall with my neighbour, all 350-400 kg of it.
In fact I was so nervous the first night I filled it up, I slept downstairs in the living room should anything happen, don't know what I was thinking I could do if it did fall....

That's a phrase used around our house regularly  :grin:

I know exactly what you mean on the sleeping with you tank just in case thing, done that before now too for several reasons.

Do you have a tank thread with your DIY brackets etc on show?

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