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How to Make Your Own Fish Tank Aquarium

August 21st, 2009

fish-tank-aquarium-make-your-own.jpgIf you want to make your own fish tank aquarium, you will have to make sure that you get the construction right in order to ensure that your tank remains standing. Poorly constructed aquariums can create a huge mess by not having the ability to hold the water you place inside of it.

First, purchase all of the materials needed to make your own fish tank aquarium. This will include four panels of glass, a steel tank stand, and a silicone adhesive. Most of these items you can purchase from a hardware store and pet store.

Then, choose the size of your aquarium. For a 30 gallon tank, you can use the dimensions 36 1/4” L x 12 5/8” W x 16 3/4” H in order to fit within a 30 gallon steel tank stand. When empty this tank will weigh 43 pounds while full it will support 343 pounds. This will determine the size of the glass pieces you will use in the construction. Cut the pieces of glass if you have the tools or have a glass cutter perform this function. The type of glass that you use should be very thick in order to hold the weight of the water, at least 1/4 inch or more thick.

Next, sand the edges of the glass down and clean them. You will want to use a coarse grit; about 3000 grit diamond sandpaper should achieve smooth edges. You can sand by hand or use a handheld sander to speed up the process. In order to remove dirt and grime, you can use an acetone based solvent. Make sure you rinse thoroughly with mild soap and water in order to ensure that none of the acetone residue is left on the glass.

Finally, apply an adhesive with the self application tip of the container in order to secure the glass edges to the steel tank stand. You can also use an adhesive gun for more accurate and even application. You will want to be very cautious with the amount of adhesive that you use in order to avoid any bubbles from forming. After applying the adhesive, you should let the stand sit overnight. The steel tank stand will support each piece as you glue them directly onto the stand, so you can adhere all pieces at once.

Lastly, test out the integrity of your fish tank aquarium. Place the water inside of it and check to see how it holds up. You may want to perform this test outdoors in order to avoid a messy floor. Once you are sure that it’s safe, you can place your fish inside along with a filter and other tank decorations.

Remember to leave an opening at the top of your fish tank aquarium. You cannot construct the top from solid glass since this will restrict the amount of oxygen that gets to the fish.


Heather Wood has produced eight articles and two sales at Constant Content.

Somewhat related article: Virtual Aquarium Screensaver


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