Built in Stand for a 125 Gallon Aquarium #1: Tank and Framing

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Blog entry by JoeyG posted 10-21-2012 01:31 AM 17065 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Built in Stand for a 125 Gallon Aquarium series Part 2: Tank Set Up »

I have been threatening to do it, and now I finally have. We have a friend who works in a fish store. We were there the other day looking at fish and explaining to him that we were looking for a 125 gallon tank. The one they had at the store was $409.99. We were looking for a used one, because we couldn’t justify spending that much. Well later that night he calls us. It seems he got into a contest with his manager that he could sell the tank in 20 mins if he dropped the price. His manager agreed to the bet and dropped the price over 50%. 20 mins later the tank was in our car and we were heading home. Walked out paying just over $200 with tax.

This tank measures 72 X 18 X 21 tall.

Next stop is the lumberyard!!!

Then it’s on to building the deck that will hold the tank. This tank can potentially weigh in over 1500 pounds so I wanted it to be solid. Plus since it’s a built in I will never be moving it. If we ever decide to sell our home, I just remove the tank and drop a piece of granite on it and the new home owners have one heck of a sturdy buffet unit.
Here you can see the meat of it. I doubled up the 2X6’s where the tank will sit. The back 2X6 is to attach it to the wall and give space for any plumbing that may come later. The tank will sit out from the wall about 6+ inches to allow for anything I may need to hide back there.

Here you see some of the blocking in place. I took care that they lined up where my post will go when I install it.

This thing is as big as our couch!!!

This is where our angelfish will soon call home.

I was able to slid it into place without tearing up the walls to badly. My son slid the post under it as I held it up. I then made sure everything was level and then screwed it into each studs on the back on the sides.

As you can see the post are all in place. I can fit a 4ft tank into that center opening to use as a sump if I choose to.

That’s it for now, it’s been a busy day. We should have the tank up tomorrow and water in it. The next installment may not have a lot of woodworking in it, since it will be about setting up the tank, but in order for this to be a full account of the build, that part needs to be included also.

Please fell free to leave any ideas or comments. That’s why I do these blogs. I’ve missed doing them. Glad to be back.

Thanks for reading.

-- JoeyG ~~~

8 comments so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30615 posts in 3421 days

#1 posted 10-21-2012 01:36 AM

Is there going to be storage underneath?

Looks great

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View JoeyG's profile


1275 posts in 3708 days

#2 posted 10-21-2012 01:39 AM

There will be a small area on the left and right for fish foods, meds, things like that. The center will end up housing a 55 gallon sump tank. It will be a planted tank that acts as a filter for the 125 gallon tank up top.

-- JoeyG ~~~

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3773 days

#3 posted 10-21-2012 01:52 AM

Holey cow Joey! You have got the aquarium bug bad! Great score on that tank and I can’t wait to see it set up. The 55 gal sump tank sounds like a great idea as the weekly tank cleaning finally made us give up our aquarium hobby. Just don’t get into BIG fish like I did. The star of our 300 gal tank was an 8 pound Pacu that laid turds the size of a Doberman’s!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View JoeyG's profile


1275 posts in 3708 days

#4 posted 10-21-2012 02:12 AM

Thanks Andy. I thought you just had your pond, I didn’t realize you used to have tanks. Pacu’s get crazy big. Most people can’t get a tank that big, so I personally don’t think most stores should sell them. The 55 gallon tank that I posted had to go to make room for this. I think I sold 5 tanks all together last week. This will help consolidate all those tanks. My angelfish will be the kings of this little world. I am hoping to begin breeding so maybe there will be a blog about building a fish room. Well that’s a ways in the future. For now I am very happy with this.

Our tanks are filtered with plants. I do weekly water changes but that’s all the maintenance we really have to do, and I probably could get by not doing that much. I enjoy it, so that helps.

The fun part of the build will probably come after Christmas. That’s when I will be building the faceframe and doors. I hope to get it done sooner, but the shop is slammed.

So what did you do with the pacu? Throw him in the pond? LOL

-- JoeyG ~~~

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3773 days

#5 posted 10-21-2012 03:29 AM

We had a “fish room” in our old house and if we didn’t stay on top of all the cleaning it smelled like a “fish room!” It finally just got to be more work than fun. We got all the fish sold except the big Pacu and some huge catfish. They went to the neighbors pond (though I doubt they survived the winter). The coolest fish I ever had was a 24” long Arawana that would eat nothing but live food (but he was worth the trouble). We raised him from a baby (still had some egg sac when we got him). Thanks for the memories.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View patron's profile


13718 posts in 4424 days

#6 posted 10-21-2012 03:38 AM

great score joey

and a solid build too

dobermans pooping in fish tanks ….. geesh

learn something new here everyday

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View lanwater's profile


3113 posts in 4017 days

#7 posted 10-21-2012 05:36 AM

I always wanted one when I was much younger.
After seeing my friend fish die I never got one.

You certainly got a good break. Enjoy.

-- Abbas, Castro Valley, CA

View JoeyG's profile


1275 posts in 3708 days

#8 posted 10-22-2012 03:03 AM

Thanks guys. It’s great when you can mix all the pleasures of life, my family, woodworking, and our fish. Our kids love it, as do we. I am looking forward to finishing it up. The the fighting for seats at the table will begin. At least one of us will have our back to the tank. Maybe a rotating schedule will work. LOL

-- JoeyG ~~~

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