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Finishing the stand

Posted 09/17/2011 at 08:27 PM by Spaced Cowboy
Tags build

Once the room was prepped, we moved the stand into the room, and I started to make it look a bit more visually appealing. We decided on a Red Oak texture, but I’ll be finishing it with a Brown oak dye followed by a Brown Mahogany stain, topped off with an oil-based varnish. This’ll give a deep warm brown that is typical of many period antiques, and coincidentally match the other furniture in the room.

First order of business was to reinforce the centre of the stand - putting a single 2x4 in the centre makes it into dual 48” spans, which the 2x8 is very over-specced for.

Next, was the basic facing work. I’ve used ¼” thick Red Oak for the facing, 8” wide. They’re attached using glue and galvanised brads. There’s a little too much play in the one or two of the boards, but by the time the trim is attached, that play will disappear.

[CENTER][IMG]http://www.tank-log.com/tank-log.com/Home/Entries/2010/12/31_Standing_out_files/shapeimage_2.png[/IMG][/CENTER]

Speaking of trim, the goal is to build out the corners and the centre post, to provide some decoration over the plain exterior, as well as to hide the joins at 48”. Most of my tools are non-professional, I just don’t have the space for a “real” table-saw for example, so one of the design principles was to make everything work with 48” lengths, which my tools (and I!) are far happier with.

I also want some detail around the top of the tank, which will hide the expanded polystyrene, as well as the black plastic around the rim of the tank. That means there has to be a lip of about 2¼” above the tank base.

To make the top-trim, I routed out three pieces of wood with different profiles. The goal is to have a solid top to the trim (provided by the far-right piece), which holds the other two in-place.

[CENTER][IMG]http://www.tank-log.com/tank-log.com/Home/Entries/2010/12/31_Standing_out_files/IMG_0115.jpg[/IMG][/CENTER]


The far-left piece forms the back of the trim, with the middle-piece locking into place in the channel in the far right piece. You can see how they go together below.

One important note is that the far-right piece has a ¼” overhang at the rear of the trim. This is because when the trim is placed against the existing facing (which is ¼” thick), it will be that ¼” away from where the glass is, due to the width of the facing. Having the overhang will remove the visual “gap” between the tank and the casing. It’ll also make placing the tank onto the stand a sight trickier because there's going to be less wiggle-room...

Once the pieces are assembled, you can see the profile that is produced, as well as that overhang. Of course, this is upside-down - the flat part will form the top of the trim when it’s installed.

[CENTER][IMG]http://www.tank-log.com/tank-log.com/Home/Entries/2010/12/31_Standing_out_files/IMG_0116.jpg[/IMG][/CENTER]


This took several hours to do, but I ended up with 16’ (in 4 four-foot lengths) of trim, which ought to be enough for an 8' tank, as well as a tired back and a huge feeling of accomplishment [grin]. The trim will be “wrapped” around two protruding corner-columns of the stand, and also around a central protruding column. I’ll also be adding some relief work to the columns, so they aren’t just plain wood themselves.

I didn’t take too many photos when I was actually putting the trim together, but here’s one when the top moulding (above) has been wrapped around the top of the stand, hiding all the ugly joints.

[CENTER][IMG]http://www.tank-log.com/tank-log.com/Home/Entries/2011/3/12_Gaining_an_edge_files/IMG_0129.jpg[/IMG][/CENTER]

It’s not particularly obvious, but I’ve also inlaid the closest column with some detail work around the edges. All the columns will eventually get that - you can see that the far column is still having the raised relief applied to it.
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