Screen Top

Discussion in 'General Discussions and Advice' started by TheTurk, 17 Jul 2014.

  1. TheTurk

    TheTurk

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    Hey guys,

    I really want a yellow goby down the line but I've heard they're quite the escape artists.
    I saw a screen top/ mesh on BRS and was wondering if we get it here? If so, where? How exactly would it work with the bracing?
    I tried giving builders a call but they had absolutely no idea what i was talking about. :lol: So if the term " screen top" is incorrect then please do correct me. :biggrin:

    Thanks in advance

    DIY_screen_top_for_aquariums (1).jpg
     
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  3. Ebi Omer

    Ebi Omer

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    I'd like the exact same thing.
     
  4. nemo_jhb

    nemo_jhb

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    Been looking for something similar myself
     
  5. CameL

    CameL

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    Just build one, buy the netting at mica or builders, some pvc pipe with 90 degree bends and measure the size of the tank, similar to that of an algae scrubber screen.
    Seems simple enough.
     
  6. dallasg

    dallasg Moderator MASA Contributor

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    i made one of these using aluminium angles and bird netting
     
  7. Duimpies

    Duimpies

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    egg-crate normally does the trick
     
  8. Blue Reefer

    Blue Reefer MASA Contributor

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    @dallasg where did you purchase the bird netting
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  9. dallasg

    dallasg Moderator MASA Contributor

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    i found egg crate blocked to much light and caused shadows

    builders garden section, its a super fine plastic mesh
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  10. hansiemyburgh

    hansiemyburgh

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    i also got some brown plastic grid from the garden section at Builders.
     
  11. CameL

    CameL

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    Also have a look at haberdashery shops, can maybe get some lace netting, or a fabric shop
     
  12. Blue Reefer

    Blue Reefer MASA Contributor

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    @dallasg thanks will go check out builders.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  13. TheTurk

    TheTurk Thread Starter

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    Thanks for the suggestion but pvc pipes would look far too bulky :whistling:

    Thanks Dallas! the bird netting is exactly what I'm looking for now I just need to find those plastic frames.

    Here is a couple more pictures of the frame if anyone has seen them

    P1160120.jpg

    P1160126.jpg
     
  14. ascheff

    ascheff

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    I'm planning on building something very similar myself, as I also want some fish that are known acrobats.

    Maizey plastics sells something called a Spiritflex tensioning system. It consists of a length of aluminium with a groove and a plastic tensioning strip. You can buy them in 3 meter lengths. It's used to stretch printed PVC banners in an aluminium frame, and works very similar to the photos you've posted. You cut the sections to build the frame, then place your netting on top between the aluminium and plastic, then knock the plastic strip into the groove in the aluminium, which then stretches the netting.

    I've already bought myself the aluminium and plastic sections, but still need to get the netting and time to put it all together, so I'm not 100% sure it will work or how neat it will look.

    The profile I got is called "F Section", which provides an aluminium lip that'll rest on the edge of the glass.

    http://www.maizey.co.za/signage-materials/commercial-graphics/spiritflex/item/363-spiritflex-f-section.html

    There's also one called "C Section", which is narrower and doesn't have the lip.

    It doesn't have the plastic corners that are in your photos, so I'm planning on cutting at 45 degree angles to make the frame. The aluminium also isn't anodised, just raw silver aluminium, so I'm not sure what it'll look like on the aquarium. My plastic tension strips are black, but I believe it also comes in white or grey.

    I'm not sure if the raw aluminium will be a problem - if it will rust or give off anything. I'm also not sure if the netting will actually go into it, as it's actually made for thin PVC banner material. The guys at Maizey however thought it should.

    I paid R230 for a 3 meter length of each.
     
  15. ascheff

    ascheff

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    Here's a video of someone installing a banner using Spiritflex:

     
    Last edited by a moderator: 11 Apr 2016
  16. TheTurk

    TheTurk Thread Starter

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    If that was only made up of only plastic I would've gone to buy it tomorrow! Aluminum doesn't rust like iron but I know that it oxidizes? Not sure if that would harm your tank though.

    I did find a solution i think. The trunking used to hide TV cables should work as the two parts clamp together. So you would just have to pull the net tight before closing the other trunk. The cool thing is that you can get the 90 degree connectors as well.

    This is what I'm talking about

    tr-25x40-1-500x500.jpg

    download.jpg
     
  17. ascheff

    ascheff

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    I think if the netting is thin and light enough, that should work, and will look pretty neat too.

    If I remember correctly, you get the trunking in different profiles too. I'm sure I've one that's quite flat, with a roundish top, made for very thin wires.

    I'll definitely look into this before I start putting mine together.
     
  18. Robsharkbait

    Robsharkbait

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    Guys,

    Just remember that PVC trunking is not very strong and that it will bend as
    soon as you try to tension the netting.

    I might be wrong, but I personally think that the aluminium product as per the video
    should work fine.

    I copied the following from an Aluminium product site:

    Aluminium corrosion resistance

    Aluminium corrosion resistance is very good in untreated aluminium. Untreated aluminium has very good corrosion resistance in most environments. This is primarily because aluminium spontaneously forms a thin but effective oxide layer that prevents further oxidation.
    Aluminium oxide is impermeable and, unlike the oxide layers on many other metals, it adheres strongly to the parent metal. If damaged mechanically, aluminium's oxide layer repairs itself immediately.
    This oxide layer is one of the main reasons for aluminium's good corrosion properties. The layer is stable in the general pH range 4 ***8211; 9.

    If you are still not convinced, you can always paint the frame :)
     
  19. ascheff

    ascheff

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    Thanks for the info @Robsharkbait . I was particularly worried about rust / oxidation, as my water level is very to the edge of the glass, and will also be close to the aluminum, so the info is very useful. I already have the aluminum, so will give it a go.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  20. TheTurk

    TheTurk Thread Starter

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    @ascheff how is the netting coming along? would love to see some pics if completed? Unfortunately my trunking idea didn't go according to plan. Netting was too thick for the trunking to snap shut.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  21. RiaanP

    RiaanP Moderator

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    I used aluminum for a frame and netting from Chamberlains.

    OK, could have used bird net as it is finer. But I lost a really small clown and a firefish that both jumped through the eggcrate. This net it is seriously impossible, OK, maybe a pipefish, but I doubt that they are jumpers

    anyway
    [​IMG]

    and

    [​IMG]
     
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