This is a follow-up on a previous article on aquarium stands.
Here are some pictures of an aquarium stand with puzzle-piece joints. The theory is that these joints are stronger than the butt joints commonly used with screw-and-glue for aquarium stands, especially when exposed to salt water. The aquarium loads the joints and makes them stronger, while butt joints are prone to pulling apart under load.
This stand supports a flat-back hex tank which looks like a conventional rectangular tank with softened edges in the front and a normal back. The stand sits on a sheet of 3/4″ fir plywood, which is supported by 4×4 fir legs and 2×4 cedar crosspieces. All of that sits inside a bottom tray of 3/4″ fir ply, which will be sealed and painted with epoxy to make it completely water-tight. The tray extends 3 1/2″ behind the tank, and the back support members extend up the back of the tank in order to support the canopy that houses the lights and fans. The back support pieces hide the plumbing and electric wires on the back of the tank.
Here’s the tray at the bottom, which also spreads the tank’s load across the floor boards.
Attached to the tray we have the legs, 4×4’s trimmed with 122 and 148 degree angles to follow the tank.
The cross-pieces at the top of the legs are notched to overlap each other, and the legs are notched to carry them. These are the puzzle-pieces, but they’re easy to cut with a table saw or a miter saw.
This is what a front leg looks like. The back legs are longer since they go all the way to the top.
And here we have the assembled frame, less the veneered plywood skin that will wrap around the whole assembly and give it some lateral strength.
All the joints are screwed and glued once you’ve test-assembled and made sure it all fits.
Next time I’ll walk through the veneering and skinning.
UPDATE: Here’s a teak veneer stand.