How to make an aquarium with your own hands?
If you carefully examine any rectangular aquarium, you can understand its simple design. In principle, this is an ordinary container made of pieces of glass. Make such a capacity is quite capable of a person who knows how to handle household tools. There are, however, some rules and subtleties that need to be known before work begins.
Acquisition of a finished aquarium of almost any form does not pose a problem: in pet stores their choice is quite large. At the same time, there are quite a lot of aquarists who independently make containers for ornamental fish at home.
There are various reasons for this. For example, a fish owner lives in a rural area, and transporting a large glass structure from the nearest city pet store can be quite problematic. Someone makes glued houses for aquatic life for sale. But most often the meaning of self-production of this item is the joy of creativity and the desire to save money the family budget.
Materials for work
Making an aquarium with your own hands requires the following tools and materials:
- special silicate glue;
- glue dispenser (so-called gun);
- glass cutter;
- masking tape;
- ruler or roulette;
- rags from natural fabric.
Choosing glass for aquarium
Especially it is necessary to dwell on the issue of quality and thickness of glass. In working condition, the bottom and walls of the banks are under considerable water pressure. Consequently, with increasing capacity, glass thickness should also increase.
For example, for a small aquarium with a length of 50 cm and a height of 30 cm, you should choose a glass with a thickness of at least 5 millimeters. And when you need to glue a large jar (1 m to 0.6 m, for example), you need a 10-mm glass.
If organic glass is chosen as the material for the walls, then the same calculations should be followed. However, master aquarists rarely work with Plexiglas, so it quickly becomes cloudy, and when cleaning the walls from algae visible scratches appear on it.
There is a requirement for the grade of glass. In our case, it is necessary to choose the material of the highest grade M1, without impurities and microscopic air bubbles inside. Glass of this brand is usually used in shop windows.
When choosing the appropriate adhesive, preference is given to a special silicone sealant for aquariums. You need to make sure that it is harmless to living organisms. Save on silicone should not be. Many aquarists recommend KNAUF 881 German sealant or Soudal Silirub Aquarium.
Making the simplest glue aquarium
It is impossible to make a round aquarium on your own without special professional equipment, but almost every home artist can make a rectangular jar.
Preparation of glass parts
After careful measurement, glass for the bottom, front and back sides, end walls are cut out. The edges of the glass need not be ground to ensure better adhesion to the sealant.
It is recommended to plan in advance so that the bottom of the aquarium is inside the vertical walls. The fact is that silicone sealant works very well for stretching.
All the glass parts around the places where the gluing will be done are glued on both sides with strips of painting tape, the edge of which should retreat 5-6 mm from the edge of the wall or bottom.
It is necessary that the glass does not get dirty in the process of applying sealant. Future docking sites should be degreased with acetone or white spirit.
Working with glue
Around the perimeter of the bottom glass, you need to put a few drops of silicone, wait 2-3 hours and cut so that the frozen glue was 1-2 millimeters thick. The peculiar beacons that determine the thickness of the glue line are obtained. It is very important that the glass parts do not touch each other in order to avoid breakage under the influence of load and lateral pressure.
Further gluing is performed on a hard surface covered with polyethylene. The front wall is attached and glued. So that it does not collapse, you need to put props on both sides.
Silicone is extruded evenly to the seam turned out the same thickness. Then end glass is attached and sealed. In relation to the front wall, it must be fixed with masking tape. In the same way glued second end glass and rear wall. Remains of excess sealant gently cleaned with a sponge or a damp cloth.
After about 2 hours, it is recommended to put another layer of silicone on the joints to ensure the safety margin. An hour later, the masking tape can be removed, and then the seams should be carefully cleaned with a razor blade.
Before you continue reading, watch the video tutorial, where the ways of gluing aquarium glasses are detailed:
The device of stiffeners will also be useful. They are made of strips of the same glass with a width of 6-10 centimeters and are glued in the upper part of the vertical walls.
The ribs, which should be 4-6 cm shorter than the length of each wall, provide uniform pressure of water on the entire surface. This measure is particularly relevant for large tanks.After a day you can experience glued can under load. If there are no leaks, then the aquarium is ready.
By this principle, you can glue an aquarium of increased volume. Naturally, this will require thicker glass, stiffeners at the top and bottom, as well as a system for fixing vertical walls when gluing with, for example, corner clamps.
How to build aquarium accessories?
Depending on the equipment used (false bottom, external aquarium filter, etc.), you need to cut holes in the side wall or bottom and glue short connections to them in the bottom.
Some craftsmen neatly cut off the necks from glass bottles, insert them into the openings with the edge of the neck out and seal her around the circumference with silicone. Subsequently, these self-made adapters easily fit the hoses of external life support devices.
DIY Aquarium Cover
The material for this important element can serve as plexiglass, simple silicate glass, plastic. It all depends on the size of the tank.
With the advent of new building materials, home craftsmen began to abandon heavy Plexiglas and began to use foamed polyvinyl chloride to create an aquarium cover, or more simply PVC panels.
Making frame cover
If the aquarium is small, the cover can also be made of ordinary building plastic with a thickness of at least 3 mm. In any case, it can not be put on the glass. Therefore, you first need to make the bead of the same plastic, cutting the strip along the length of the walls with a width of 6-10 cm. This will be the height of the bead.
The frame is glued with resin or special glue for plastic. The corner joint is better strengthened with a metal corner (also glued).
Fastening the cover to the aquarium
An interesting way to fasten the sides to the top of the can was invented by craftsmen: using PVC cable channel.
On both sides of the cable channel has grooves, which are inserted into the walls of the aquarium, and segments of the bead, so it should immediately be chosen under the appropriate thickness of glass. All joints should be smeared with silicone.
Hinges are attached to the tailgate to lift the lid. They can either be glued or bolted together. In the plastic surface of the roof is a square slot for its capture and lifting. Fish feed is also fed through this hole.If the plastic bends, then from the inside along the entire length it should be reinforced with a light aluminum corner. This corner will be at the same time fastening for lamps.
So that the wires and hoses go inside the aquarium space, at the stage of gluing the frame, holes are carefully cut in the side of the board. This can be done with a wide drill in wood. Some owners of ornamental fish drill the same holes in the opposite side, which contributes to better ventilation of aqua.
We build in lighting
Each aquarist chooses lamps to his own taste, but many craftsmen advise purchasing fluorescent lamps with a light transmission coefficient of at least 60 Ra. The presence of this technical indicator should be clarified in the store.
If desired, the outer part of the cover can be decorated to your taste with a self-adhesive film. The cover for the aquarium is ready.
Why do I need to make an aquarium myself, if it can be freely purchased at a pet store or in a bird market? Creative people can precisely answer this question, the pride of which are hand-made things. In addition, the cash costs of self-manufacturing glass containers for fish is almost half the cost of the finished product.
Video with instructions on how to make an aquarium with your own hands:
❶ How to make an aquarium :: Equipment and accessories
How to make an aquarium
We begin with the choice of glass, for an aquarium it is necessary to take glass M3 and above, check for any inclusions or scratches. This is the most crucial step if you decide to make an aquarium with your own hands.
Now it is necessary to determine the thickness of the glass. Let's calculate the volume of our ailing aquarium using the formula: V = a * b * h where a and b are the width and length, and h is the height. After counting, we determine the thickness of the glass: up to 30 liters - you can take 5 mm glass, if the volume is up to 50 liters - then 6 mm, up to 100 liters - 8 mm, 120 liters and more - it is better to take 12 mm glass. For strength in large-sized aquariums, it is better to do screeds.
Now, you need to cut it. Cutting is usually included in the list of services when buying glass, and by gluing together a small aquarium, it is better to look for a workshop in which parts for it will be cut out of scraps, its cost will significantly decrease.
How to glue the aquarium? Of course - silicone glue. There are two ways of gluing the aquarium: when the walls are put on the bottom, and when attached around the bottom. Now the assembly order itself.
We collect water in the bath 10-15 cm. We put a towel on the bottom, put glass on it. With a wetted grinding stone, we grind off the ribs. Drain the ends, and degrease them with acetone or alcohol.
We put the bottom on the paper. On the front wall on the end, with which the wall becomes on the bottom, apply sealant evenly, then take it and carefully put it on the bottom. Do not press too hard, otherwise almost all the glue will come out, and the bonding strength will decrease, this is one of the special features of silicone, that the greater its thickness, the stronger the product that it sticks together.
It is necessary that the glue comes out a little on both sides. Support the wall and wait until it dries.
Take the side wall. This time you need to spread the lower end, which is placed on the bottom, and the lateral end, which will be glued to the glass, which in turn is already glued to the bottom. We put it in its place.
Do not forget that you need to check the quality of the pinned layer of silicone.
We perform the same manipulations with the remaining sides of the aquarium, then leave our aquarium to dry for about a day. Do not rearrange it at all.
When dry, take the blade and cut off the excess glue on the seams, inside you can not cut, in the water it will be invisible. Fill the water in the aquarium, do it better in the bathroom, as there is a chance of leakage, and leave for a couple of hours. Look carefully at the seams and check the corners very carefully. If there are no leaks anywhere, then you were able to make the aquarium right. Now you can safely take his population.