How To Build an Aquarium Screen Net Top | DIY

January 23rd, 2015
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Top Keep your fish in the tank with minimal impact on light penetration with a do-it-yourself screen net top!

To build this, you have two options:

1. Buy the items at a big box hardware store (probably the cheapest option).

2. Buy our DIY Screen Net Top Kit, which has everything you need including the screen frame, corners, spline, spline roller and clear netting.

The clear 1/4" netting is really hard to find, but we do have it available on our site: http://www.bulkreefsupply.com/clear-netting.html

Once you have all your materials, here's how to build the top:

Step 1: Measure the inside lip of the aquarium frame, or rimless tank to get the dimensions for your new top.

Step 2: Subtract the corner from the total length and width. Each corner is 3/4", and there's one on each side so you will need to subtract a total of 1 1/2" off each side.

Step 3: Measure and mark two pieces of frame.

Step 4: Cut the frame.

TIP: We use a hacksaw in a series of backward strokes, which cuts through the aluminum frame easily

Step 5: Assemble the frame with the corners.

Step 6: Install the screen using the spline and spline roller.

TIP: This step is easier and yields better results when done by two people; one to hold the screen in place and one to roll in the spline. It's not difficult to do alone, if need be though.

TIP: The easiest way to achieve a taut and square look is to cut the netting to a more manageable size, just a few inches larger than the frame you are working with.

Step 7: Cut off excess netting using a sharp razor.

You're done! If you have a plastic rim aquarium, all you need to do is set it in place. If you have a rimless tank, you have a few options. First would be to use a reef safe epoxy covered magnet, or you could attach a few pieces of acrylic to the glass with silicone for the top to rest on.

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