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Wheels under tank support - smart or stupid?

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I've never seen anyone post about this so I wonder if it's just a crazy idea but thought I'd throw it out there. I'm about to set up a IM 20 Nuvo using the top of an IKEA Kallax bookcase as the stand. The dimensions fit the tank well and I currently have a 12 gallon custom built tank on it (closer in shape to a cube). 

 

I'm also about to have new hardwood floors put in and know that my water changes can get sloppy and the worst damage will occur if the water seeps under the bookcase where I can't get it. Even small legs will pose a problem if  I can't get under them. Therefore, I thought I'd put the bookcase on heavy duty wheels that lock. This way, in case of a spill, I can gently move the stand (bookcase) to completely mop the floor before moving it back. Does this sound like a good idea, or totally impractical? If it does sound crazy, what do people do to preserve their floors? Thanks! 

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With small tanks below the 30G range you are able to do this as the weight is not as much of an issue on the wheels. However, you will not want to move it as much as possible. Even a slow push will get the water moving and put stress on the sides of a tank.

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I use this as a stand for a tank on hardwood floors too. I just always put towels on the floor when I'm working in my tank. 

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I wouldn't do that. I too put towels on the floor... or you could varnish the hardwood  and make it waterproof (?)

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Thanks Boggers, kimberbee and RookieRock for your input and ideas! 

 

Kimberbee, are towels sufficient to catch the water? I'm always doing something clumsy, like letting the hose flip out of the bucket. I don't think the wheels would snap if I got heavy duty ones, but I am a little concerned about the tank swaying while moving it. I think even little feet would be a better idea than the whole thing flat on the ground so that I could at least wipe under it somewhat. Boggers, I see what you mean about any water slosh causing a strain, which I don't want. And RookieRock, the while the floors will already be "prefinished" (i.e., shiny), it can still seep down between the boards. Maybe another coat of poly would help, although if it gets under the bookcase, I'm not sure it would matter much. 

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I had a friend who had a 50 gallon tank on wheels.  It worked great.  The magic is to use the wide heavy rubber wheels - they support very high weight and don’t dig into the floor.  With those wheels there was no “lurch” to get the stand moving so the water stayed put.  I saw a basement fish room on YouTube that had several large tanks on wheels.  It allowed the second level of tanks to be just a few inches above the hoods on the tanks of the first level.  To access, the tanks on the lower level were just pulled out from under the second level.

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I just recalled that the rubber wheels are the kind that are sometimes placed under heavy appliances like refrigerators.  We had a bank of -80’s along a wall and they were readily moveable by even a small person since the wheels rolled so well without resistance.

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Mine is on an old butcher block on wheels. But the wheels are lockable. It has been stable, Even trough earthquakes up to the 5-6 range.  I also have it on the hardwood, so I always keep a towel nearby when working on it. 

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3 minutes ago, OldManSea said:

I had a friend who had a 50 gallon tank on wheels.  It worked great.  The magic is to use the wide heavy rubber wheels - they support very high weight and don’t dig into the floor.  With those wheels there was no “lurch” to get the stand moving so the water stayed put.  I saw a basement fish room on YouTube that had several large tanks on wheels.  It allowed the second level of tanks to be just a few inches above the hoods on the tanks of the first level.  To access, the tanks on the lower level were just pulled out from under the second level.

Wow, thanks OldManSea. I don't feel so crazy now. Maybe I will try it -- Home Depot seems to have some pretty study, albeit pricey, wheels!

 

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2 minutes ago, MrJoel said:

Mine is on an old butcher block on wheels. But the wheels are lockable. It has been stable, Even trough earthquakes up to the 5-6 range.  I also have it on the hardwood, so I always keep a towel nearby when working on it. 

Also a great idea! I was looking into the lockable kind. Amazing that your tank is stable with earthquakes. I plan to keep a towel nearby and maybe even a big sheet of plastic with the towels on top of it. 

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4 minutes ago, OldManSea said:

I just recalled that the rubber wheels are the kind that are sometimes placed under heavy appliances like refrigerators.  We had a bank of -80’s along a wall and they were readily moveable by even a small person since the wheels rolled so well without resistance.

Thanks! I'll look into appliance wheels. I can't imagine the tank will be heavier than a refrigerator. It will only be 20 gallons. 

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Casterconnection.com

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2 minutes ago, Beer said:

Casterconnection.com

Thanks! Great resource! Those are a lot of wheels! 

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Check out the polyfin wheels (If I recall correctly, there are some comical video comparisons). Little deformation (easier to get rolling), but are also able to move over small debris without getting hung up.

 

Good people to deal with too.

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7 hours ago, Beer said:

Check out the polyfin wheels (If I recall correctly, there are some comical video comparisons). Little deformation (easier to get rolling), but are also able to move over small debris without getting hung up.

 

Good people to deal with too.

Thanks Beer! Good to have some direction as there are so many wheels. In searching this site though, I realize I'm "wheel ignorant." Is polyfin a material? I tried to put the term in the search bar but didn't get anything. Should I just call them? Thanks?

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I think casters will be plenty strong enough, you gotta remember tool boxes on wheels, and some range from 900-1500lbs empty. 

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Yeah, you can call.

 

I'd start by narrowing down the selection by top plate, wheel height, and capacity. Start figuring what options work from there and start narrowing things down. Their selection is so huge, you could probably start doing goofy things like isolating based on color to coordinate with the room if you wanted to get that crazy and still end up with some really good casters.

 

You'll end up spending less there for all the casters than you would on a single crappy caster from HD that will probably fail on you in a year or so.

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This tank has only been up for 4 months so I can't give you a long term outlook but it's worked so far and allowed for air circulation under the stand. Keep in mind you're concentrating all of the weight to relatively small areas so you are likely to put a permanent dent in softer floor materials. 

20180224_090633.jpg

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1 hour ago, chaostactics said:

This tank has only been up for 4 months so I can't give you a long term outlook but it's worked so far and allowed for air circulation under the stand. Keep in mind you're concentrating all of the weight to relatively small areas so you are likely to put a permanent dent in softer floor materials. 

 

Wow, beautiful tank! It looks great! What wheels did you use? I was also thinking about possible denting with the concentration of weight on the wheels. OldManSea suggested wide rubber wheels to avoid the denting. 

 

Crazy Eyes and Beer, thanks also for your comments. I'm going to look through the casterconnection site now to see if I can decide on something. 

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I missed my window to call as Caster Connection is closed on weekends. I'll call Monday and report back as to type of wheel they recommend. Thanks all. 

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9 hours ago, oneart said:

Wow, beautiful tank! It looks great! What wheels did you use? I was also thinking about possible denting with the concentration of weight on the wheels. OldManSea suggested wide rubber wheels to avoid the denting. 

 

Crazy Eyes and Beer, thanks also for your comments. I'm going to look through the casterconnection site now to see if I can decide on something. 

I had to go with what ever was available at home desperate. They are approx 1" wide and 2.5 in diameter rubber wheels.  Each rated for 300 or 350# each. I picked up two each locking and non locking. Completely unnecessary to have locks unless you have little ones. 

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1 hour ago, chaostactics said:

I had to go with what ever was available at home desperate. They are approx 1" wide and 2.5 in diameter rubber wheels.  Each rated for 300 or 350# each. I picked up two each locking and non locking. Completely unnecessary to have locks unless you have little ones. 

Lol, Home Desperate. I've been there often! Thanks for the dimensions of your wheels and letting me know that I probably don't need locks. Seems like they are def strong enough to support your tank. Do you know if they've dented your floors? I will probably call CasterConnection before I do anything -- I think the shipping is pretty fast. I probably won't get a chance to put them on until next weekend anyway and the tank won't get to me until Monday.  Also, still need to order the lights (probably an Aquamaxx Nemo light), skimmer, live sand, and more rock.... !! 

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On 2/22/2018 at 12:24 PM, Beer said:

Check out the polyfin wheels (If I recall correctly, there are some comical video comparisons). Little deformation (easier to get rolling), but are also able to move over small debris without getting hung up.

 

Good people to deal with too.

Hi Beer, I ordered the wheels. https://casterconnection.com/casters/2-1-2-x-1-3-4-polyolefin-swivel-caster.html They aren't polyfin but polyolefin!. Sounds close enough to me! You were right, the folks at CasterConnection were very helpful. The wheels will hold up to 350 lbs I think and should be thick enough. The guy suggested two with locks so we just went ahead and did that. Anyway, I'm looking forward to getting them by the weekend so I can set up (the tank is here!) Thanks again for your help!

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Those look like they should work well.

 

I'd have gone with two locking casters as well. If the floor isn't level or you bump the tank/stand, they will keep it in place. Mostly, the extra $5 adds some peace of mind that the tank won't accidentally move on you. The locks are cheap, especially compared to the difference at most retail places. I've seen locking casters almost double what non-locking costs.

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14 hours ago, Beer said:

Those look like they should work well.

 

I'd have gone with two locking casters as well. If the floor isn't level or you bump the tank/stand, they will keep it in place. Mostly, the extra $5 adds some peace of mind that the tank won't accidentally move on you. The locks are cheap, especially compared to the difference at most retail places. I've seen locking casters almost double what non-locking costs.

I neglected to say that I did purchase locks on two of the casters so all is well there! 

 

There's one thing I'm kind of worried about though. After I ordered them, I went to the reef store to pick up a light (an AI Prime which looks sweet) and the guy said that I shouldn't have gotten swivel wheels since if all the wheels turn in one direction, like the long direction of the tank, while moving it the tank could topple over. That's why they don't use wheels. They use furniture glides as someone mentioned - but I still don't like that idea since it seems they could pop off when moving it over the raised wood room dividers (which I'll be doing in several months when I have wood floors put into the room with the tank). I got the wheels yesterday and I really can't stress it though (just keep  my fingers crossed and be careful). My husband tells me that we just need to be careful. And if chaostactics and MrJoel's tanks are okay on wheels, I"m guessing mine should be too. 

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