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A Golden Reef Tank (v2)

Discussion in 'Tank Builds' started by halmus, Jul 14, 2017.

  1. halmus

    halmus Prawn

    I've been eyeing a few laser engravers myself. I would LOVE to have one but I would probably need to set up a dedicated work station in my basement storage area. The shop is always a mess of acrylic/wood/metal shavings. I'm just too busy to commit the time to getting one, building a workspace, learning the process...,

    What kind do you have? I've got a few entry level ones I'm looking at. I don't do the kind of work that would justify an Epilog.

    Post up a thread once you start your sump project. The LED thing sounds awesome.
     
  2. Etoimos

    Etoimos Copepod M.A.S.C Club Member

    I've got an Epilog Mini 24 with a 60w tube. It would defiantly need a dedicated and clean environment of it's own. For just messing around on occasion, I don't think the expense is worth it. You would probably be better off just out sourcing the work.

    If I ever get around to doing the sump, I'll be sure to post a thread. I'm still trying to stock my tank and learn all this SW stuff. lol

    On your skinned tanks, can you see the joints around the edges where two sheets of acrylic come together or did you sand/heat polish them so they appear seamless?
     
  3. halmus

    halmus Prawn

    I did sand the edges and then flame polish them. It might be my imagination but it seems like the white acrylic reacts differently to a flame polish than black or clear acrylic. The white doesn't appear to behave as well. It definitely will show a burn mark more easily.

    So, I took it easy with the flame polish. In the end, it's still a somewhat noticeable seem but you have to really look for it.
     
  4. Etoimos

    Etoimos Copepod M.A.S.C Club Member

    Thanks. I've not tried flame polishing anything yet. I'll need to Google up on that some first.
     
  5. halmus

    halmus Prawn

    I use MAP gas. I'm sure there are other options but that works for me.

    Do it in a well ventilated space and I would recommend a charcoal mask. Who knows what kind of bad stuff you create by heating acrylic like that.

    Like a lot of new techniques, practice on some scrap material first before a final product. There's a fine balance between a good glazed edge and your workpiece igniting.

    Once you're comfortable with the process it has a really nice effect.
     
  6. halmus

    halmus Prawn

    I started off the weekend prepping for the Radions to arrive. I only have one right now to build and design from. The rest are on order. I built a wood jig to create some acrylic mounts off of. I trimmed all of the mounts to fit that jig.

    I made 8 mounts. 4 over the display and 2 each over 2 frag tanks. I'm only mounting lights over a single frag tank for now. It will be a while before I need either of the frag tanks. Obviously. But, it's easier to build the mounts now while I already have everything set up.

    I mounted the brackets to 8020 rails and then mounted those rails to the hood.

    The final picture is the back end. I'm using cable carrier drag chain 2" x 1" like you might on a CNC. All of the power and control cabling will run through that to protect them while the hood moves in and out.

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    NickP likes this.
  7. Etoimos

    Etoimos Copepod M.A.S.C Club Member

    That lighting setup is crazy man!
     
  8. SynDen

    SynDen Shark Staff Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. M.A.S.C Club Member

    Best light rack ever! Wow! Looks like it could hold a person or two. Maybe make some brackets that clip into a vest, you could use to "fly" over the tank for doing maintenance. Mission impossible style haha
    Where you get your aluminum from?
     
  9. TheRealChrisBrown

    TheRealChrisBrown Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    I am out of superlatives for this build so I'm going to just start chanting "Water" every time you post something cool. Seriously though, this is going down as the greatest build in history.....WATER!
     
    Dr.DiSilicate and Balz3352 like this.
  10. halmus

    halmus Prawn

    SynDen-

    Thanks for the compliments. I'm pretty happy with how it's turning out. I ended up getting the long pieces from Grainger to save on shipping and the rest straight from 8020. There is also an 8020 section on eBay where you can grab some deals.
     
  11. halmus

    halmus Prawn

    ChrisBrown- Thanks. I'm chanting "water" in my sleep.

    Lights are mostly in. I will pick them up this weekend if work and traffic allow me to make it to the store in time.

    I'm helping a neighbor again with his garage this weekend. I might recruit him to help hang lights after we're done.

    I had planned on automating the sliding action on the hood. I might give up on that idea. It's a lot of extra work for some added "wow factor". I already have the parts but fabricating the brackets and taking an entire weekend to work up the electronics seems like too much at this point.

    Any opinions? Spend time making a DIY garage door opener for the hood or move on towards water?
     
  12. TheRealChrisBrown

    TheRealChrisBrown Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    I know this is funny, after what I just said.....but I'd do the automated sliding lights. Your build already has that wow factor, but to that point can you just have regular lights on a rail that you have to slide using effort from your arms? No. You NEED a button to push to move the lights all around. It is really the only way it can be.
     
  13. neil82

    neil82 Prawn M.A.S.C Club Member

    Is the purpose of having the light rack with motorized controls so that it can be automated and run a schedule to move the lights around? Or is it manual control? Either way it's super cool and I would go for it!
     
  14. SynDen

    SynDen Shark Staff Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. M.A.S.C Club Member

    Sounds like a fun project to automate the light rack, but also sounds like a project that can be done while the cycle is getting started ;)
     
  15. halmus

    halmus Prawn

    I'm glad someone is validating my insane ideas.

    The motorized controls would move the entire rack and hood out from over the tank for service inside the tank. That would be manual control from a remote key fob or something like that. Open, close, stop partway open or closed. Basically the same controls you would have on a garage door.

    I did consider adding motors to tilt the Radions. The plan was to slowly rotate over the entire photo period to simulate the sun. But, with the massive and broad coverage I'll be getting from the T5's I dropped that idea for now. I could add it later. That would be automated control based on a schedule I set.
     
  16. SkyShark

    SkyShark Barracuda Staff Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. M.A.S.C Club Member

    This continues to impress the hell out of me. Keep up the great work (on the tank and the build thread)!
     
  17. halmus

    halmus Prawn

    SunDen-

    Yes, a majority of the control functionality can be done after the tank is cycling. Stepper motor, driver, limit switches, micro-controller..... However, the backbone needs to be in place prior to filling the tank.

    I will be building an acrylic shield that will cover the large glides and then mounting one of the T5 fixtures right under that. So, I would basically need to rip quite a bit apart just to get the inner section exposed to mount the hardware for the automated light rack. It all has to be done sequentially due to how much I'm trying to pack into the center channel which is static.

    I also would like to run a single plumbing line down that center channel which will go to the far front corners of the tank.

    I wish I wasn't on call for work 24-7 for six months straight. I need to sit down with my favorite IPA and think through this. Coffee isn't cutting it.
     
  18. halmus

    halmus Prawn

    SkyShark-

    Thanks for following and for the encouragement.
     
  19. Cyclist

    Cyclist Registered Users

    Very impressive build!
     
  20. Etoimos

    Etoimos Copepod M.A.S.C Club Member

    As much as everyone would like to see water in this tank, I think you will regret it if you do not automate the light rack. It's such a cool feature and you have the physical part of it done/worked out... seems a shame not to see through to completion.
     

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