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Building a canopy

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by dzabler, Oct 21, 2008.

  1. dzabler

    dzabler Inactive User

    108
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    I want to put a canopy on my 46g bow front and I have not had much luck with finding one for sale or even a design to build my own.  I am leaning towards building my own.  I am pretty handy and have plenty of tools to use.  Anybody have ideas on how to build one?
    thanks
     
  2. CyberJester

    CyberJester Inactive User

    655
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    From looking at mine, there really isn't much to them.
    Mine is just a rectangle made out of oak, approx 48" x 18" x 12".
    then inside of it they have screwed 2" x 2" wood that sits on the lip of the tank.
    The bottom lip of the 2" x 2" is place about 1" from the bottom of the canopy.
    Then there is just a hinged oak top on the top of the canopy.
    I should point out that the back part of it is open for wires to come out.
     
  3. JB Veteran Reefkeeper

    Marion
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    A rectangular one is pretty easy. Building one for a bow front might be a bit more tricky.

    I know there are some DIY Bow Front plans out there on the web if you do a google search...

    -JB
     
  4. Travis

    Travis Well-Known ReefKeeper GIRS Member

    648
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    I would order one from a LFS unless you were ok with it being rectangle. You might also want to just use light pendants or hanging lights instead. They look nice, keep the top of the tank easily accessable and keep it cooler.
     
  5. dzabler

    dzabler Inactive User

    108
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    I have been looking for info for the last couple of days and I am starting to get an idea of what I want.  One thing for sure is that I am going to take pics as I build and post them online.  thanks for your input.
     
  6. glaspie69

    glaspie69 Experienced Reefkeeper

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    where are you from?
     
  7. dzabler

    dzabler Inactive User

    108
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    Originally from Kansas City Missouri now I live in Iowa City.  i drew up a blue print of what i want to do and it really made things less complicated.  i am going to work on it this weekend.  hopefully i remember to take pictures.
     
  8. h2so4hurts

    h2so4hurts Inactive User

    578
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    Bow fronts shouldn't be a problem if you get thin plywood and can bend it.
     
  9. IowaDiver Well-Known ReefKeeper

    536
    West Des Moines
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    I bought a kit off of ebay.
    I'd just like to say canopies (at least my canopy) are a real pain in the ***. I have to take it off any time I do significant work on the tank.
    If I had to do over again, I'd probably have bought a self contained light system that sits on the tank or some type of pendant system.
     
  10. h2so4hurts

    h2so4hurts Inactive User

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    Thye shouldn't be a pain in the ***. Design it with an easy access door that just hides all of your light and cords. Light racks above a tank just look like crap IMHO. Also, make sure the plan includes a ventilation hole that you can stick a bunch of fans in. I recommend buying computer case fans and then powering them with a molex type power supply

    Powersupply: Link

    Each can power up to 4 of these fans: Link

    I bought 2 power supplies and 8 fans (One set for the canopy and one set for the sump area of my cabinet)

    You can see pictures here: Link
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2015
  11. dzabler

    dzabler Inactive User

    108
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    I am already planning on making the whole front able to open up. About the fans - I am leaving the back of the canopy totally open so would it be possible to mount one fan on each side of the back? If so would they both be blowing in or out or have them blow opposite? Thanks for the input. It is always much appreciated.
     
  12. Travis

    Travis Well-Known ReefKeeper GIRS Member

    648
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    Fans should always blow in to increase their life. If you pull air out of the canopy it causes salt creep to develope on the fan.
     
  13. h2so4hurts

    h2so4hurts Inactive User

    578
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    At $8 a fan I'm not too worried about their life. I have 2 blowing in over the lights and 2 blowing out.
     
  14. IowaDiver Well-Known ReefKeeper

    536
    West Des Moines
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    I drilled a hole in the side and used a computer fan. I wired it to an adjustable 12 volt power supply I bought at Wal-mart for cheap.

    It must just be my canopy thats a pain in the ***. The front half of the top of the canopy opens up like a lid and I can't really do any maintenance in the tank with it on.

    I'd also have the fans blowing inwards. Sure they are cheap but it's a hassle to take them off and the wire on new ones. But then again, I'm kind of lazy.
     
  15. dzabler

    dzabler Inactive User

    108
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    i am getting the fans from the link mentioned eariler.  with the dc power supply, do i have to buy an adapter to plug in multiple fans into it?  also this has nothing to do with the canopy but how do you upload a pic under your name?
     
  16. h2so4hurts

    h2so4hurts Inactive User

    578
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    The fans come with a male and a female molex connector so you can just daisy chain them all together.  It's pretty easy to figure out once you get them.
     
  17. dzabler

    dzabler Inactive User

    108
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    well i got the canopy done. i love the looks of it. i still need to paint it black but i will try to get pictures up. i think the best part is that i just went to t5s from pc and it has never looked better. thanks for all the help and if anybody needs some input on how to build one i can probably help.
     
  18. h2so4hurts

    h2so4hurts Inactive User

    578
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    Post some pics when you get it all done.
    Did you install the fans yet?
     
  19. dzabler

    dzabler Inactive User

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    o ya the fans are in.  right now i just have two (one on each side) blowing in.  since the back is totally open all the air can flow out that way and it is working really well.  also as you said it was really easy to figure out how to hook the fans up once i got to actually look at what i was working with. thanks.
     
  20. dzabler

    dzabler Inactive User

    108
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    So I took some pics.  They are all of the canopy after it was completed.  I also have some pics of when my friend's dad and I were cutting everything out and all the pieces used.  All the supplies were right under $45 and I had extra wood and screws left over.  Okay so i went to upload the pics and I could only do these two.  The files are to big to put on here...grrrrrr... Does anybody know how to get around this?  For now here are these two.
    /Portals/0/activeforums_Attach/PA290305.JPG
    This is inside of the canopy looking up.  The 1x2 you can see with my LED's on it is in the middle of two more 1x2s that i attached the reflectors to.  There is about 1/2 inch in between the top of the 1x2s and the top sheet of plywood where I have all the wires tucked away.
    /Portals/0/activeforums_Attach/PA290341.JPG
    This is the side front view of the canopy.  I used a piano hinge to attach the the front to the main structure.  On the left is one of the two fans, they are mounted on the outside.
     

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