tank leveling

Discussion in 'Tank Talk' started by mercatoris, Apr 17, 2010.

  1. mercatoris

    mercatoris Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    I have a Red Sea Max 130d which will supposedly weigh 440 pounds when filled with water and live rock. The floor it is going on is not level, it is a cement basement floor that is wavy and uneven. If I use self leveling compound to even it out, will the weight of the tank be too much for the dried self leveling compound? Or can it handle that much pressure easily? Should I put self leveling compound down, let it dry, and then put another layer of some kind of support? Also I have a 20 gallon in the vicinity of where this tank will go, and it is slightly uneven, on an all wood stand but not perfectly level. How long before that causes a catastrophe and in a tank that small is it likely that it would only happen very gradually? Lastly I don't even think I'm going to keep an octopus in this new tank but I am asking this here because people are helpful on this forum! The physics of what will actually cause a tank to crack and explode are beyond me. Maybe people on this forum understand them well enough to give advice? Thanks very much for any help.
     
  2. Ryan Smith

    Ryan Smith Wonderpus Registered

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    Well, Im not sure what kind of compound you are using, but left uneven it will crack for sure. if half of the tank is elevated an inch higher than the other with no support under the lower side, the pressure will build at that line and crack. I think your best bet would be to either, lay the compound (possibley) or build a stand that will create a level plane.
     
  3. Jocephus

    Jocephus O. bimaculoides Registered

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    In the smaller tank (20g) I wouldn't worry much about it. In the larger scenario, after you apply leveling compound, I would still place a sheet of plywood under the tank to help distribute the weight. This will help prevent the compound from cracking.

    Just my .02

    Joe
     
  4. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    Can you take a photo of how uneven it is? The leveling compound should be fine but i would rather see it before saying for sure.
     
  5. mercatoris

    mercatoris Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    I don't have a camera, and I am actually thinking I might use shims instead. That was the original plan but I came across the leveling compound and suddenly thought it might be an easier and more accurate way of leveling. When you're shimming a tank, in this case one with 440 pounds of pressure, aren't you most likely going to be off by a few fractions of an inch or so? Maybe in a tank that is moderately small like the 130d (130 liters) it won't be a huge deal. I don't know, the leveling compound may be a slower and more expensive solution and the person who is helping me with this favors shims. Sorry to get convoluted about it. Thanks for the replies.
     
  6. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    Shims will work just fine. Leveling compound can be a mess to play with.
     
  7. Jocephus

    Jocephus O. bimaculoides Registered

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    Something else that helps sometimes is to use a sheet of foam rubber between the tank and stand. The weight of the water usually levels the tank on the foam without any assistance.
     
  8. mercatoris

    mercatoris Pygmy Octopus Registered

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    I have heard of that, using a sheet of foam somewhere in between the tank and the floor. I also heard not to shim in between the tank and stand, but if it's one piece of foam rubber I guess that is level or safe compared to wood shims.
    I wonder, if I shim the stand, what are the actual requirements for how level it has to be, how off can it be and still be safe (won't crack for many many years.) Because it seems it might be hard to get the shimming PERFECT and you will end up with "close enough," but what "close enough" is I don't know.
     
  9. CaptFish

    CaptFish Colossal Squid Staff Member Moderator

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    Level is not as important as stable. I mean you don't want the tank to be leaning too much in either direction but being slightly uneven is not a big deal other than aesthetically off. if you are worried about it being structurally stable then you could also put a piece of 1/2" or larger plywood under the stand.
     

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