DIY Screen Lid (what type of screen is used?)

Karen00

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Jan 7, 2020
Messages
752
Reaction score
1,151
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Toronto
Hello fellow saltines,

I want to make a screen lid for my 5g rimless AIO. I have watched plenty of videos and read a bunch of posts but most of them don't say what type of screen they used so I'm hoping to get some ideas here. Near as I can figure there are three types of mesh I can use:
- Fiberglass (standard window)
- Aluminum (standard window)
- Tulle (fabric, might be hard to clean?)

Also, I'm trying to figure out what color will work best aesthetically and functionally to let light through. Do I go black, charcoal or white (or is there a clear/transparent type)?

Also, how do you fit them to the top of the tank? Do they sit on top? Do they fit inside the tank using clips? Do they sit above the tank using some sort of clip with a small gap between the tank and lid?

How do you deal with cables? This is where I can see a slightly raised lid would work better.

Thanks for any/all help.
 
Top Shelf Aquatics

Gtinnel

2500 Club Member
View Badges
Joined
Mar 20, 2020
Messages
2,723
Reaction score
3,461
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
I personally just used fiberglass mesh that I got at lowes with all of the frame parts. It is a charcoal color and a finer mesh than I would prefer but it doesn't seem to block too much light. My tank is rimmed so it just sits in the rim of my tank, for rimless tanks I believe you can buy clips that will allow it to sit just inside the tank instead of sitting on top of the glass.
 

Billdogg

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Jun 3, 2017
Messages
1,975
Reaction score
2,906
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Grove City, Ohio
The problem with using regular window screen is that it blocks a very significant amount of light. In fact, when I add a new coral I will use a few pieces of it on top of the clear mesh to create a shadow over the area and then remove a piece once a week until the new coral has become acclimated to my lights.
 

Gtinnel

2500 Club Member
View Badges
Joined
Mar 20, 2020
Messages
2,723
Reaction score
3,461
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
The problem with using regular window screen is that it blocks a very significant amount of light. In fact, when I add a new coral I will use a few pieces of it on top of the clear mesh to create a shadow over the area and then remove a piece once a week until the new coral has become acclimated to my lights.
I was worried about that when I used regular window screen, and I don't have a par meter to verify any difference, I can't see much of a difference with the tank. The corals didn't react when I added the screen lid. I have considered switching to the mesh that brs sells though.
 
Top Shelf Aquatics

monkeyCmonkeyDo

2500 Club Member
View Badges
Joined
Mar 4, 2019
Messages
4,635
Reaction score
4,292
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Puyallup, Wa USA
If u go to the garden section
U will find bird netting. This works but the clear is best.
Hths u
D
 

Attachments

  • IMG_20210702_234947_318.jpg
    IMG_20210702_234947_318.jpg
    206.3 KB · Views: 44
OP
Karen00

Karen00

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Jan 7, 2020
Messages
752
Reaction score
1,151
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Toronto
Bulk Reef Supply sells 1/4" mesh in both clear and black. The frame can easily be made using window screen frame from HD/Lowes
Thanks for this!! I saw the BRS stuff and that's what I've been looking for. I'm in Canada and don't know if they ship up here which is why I was hoping to find the same stuff at Lowe's or Home Depot or maybe some fishing/camping store. I will check with them about shipping. I was about to buy some of the regular window screen (fiberglass) then I saw some posts on here about diminished PAR. Ugh! Sometimes I feel like I keep hitting brick walls with getting some things for my tank. ;-)
 
OP
Karen00

Karen00

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Jan 7, 2020
Messages
752
Reaction score
1,151
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Toronto
I personally just used fiberglass mesh that I got at lowes with all of the frame parts. It is a charcoal color and a finer mesh than I would prefer but it doesn't seem to block too much light. My tank is rimmed so it just sits in the rim of my tank, for rimless tanks I believe you can buy clips that will allow it to sit just inside the tank instead of sitting on top of the glass.
Thanks!! I might have to go this route because I'm having a heck of a hard time finding the clear stuff here in Canada. Thanks also for letting me know the color you got. I was thinking charcoal as well if I can't find clear.
 
OP
Karen00

Karen00

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Jan 7, 2020
Messages
752
Reaction score
1,151
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Toronto
The problem with using regular window screen is that it blocks a very significant amount of light. In fact, when I add a new coral I will use a few pieces of it on top of the clear mesh to create a shadow over the area and then remove a piece once a week until the new coral has become acclimated to my lights.
Wow, that's a great way to acclimate! Very innovative! :) I'm glad I posted this thread because it's giving me confirmation about PAR reduction with the dark colors. The light I'm going to purchase is a 30w which is probably more than enough for a 5g but might not be with dark mesh.
 
OP
Karen00

Karen00

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Jan 7, 2020
Messages
752
Reaction score
1,151
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Toronto
If u go to the garden section
U will find bird netting. This works but the clear is best.
Hths u
D
Your lid looks great. That's what I'm hoping to do! Sourcing the frames will be easy but the clear mesh is proving difficult to find in Canada. I found one website that has it and they even advertise it for aquarium lids but the site looks very sketchy. Hopefully BRS ships up here.
 

Greg P

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 4, 2019
Messages
1,806
Reaction score
1,630
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Burnaby BC
BRS definitely ships to Canada
For dealing with cables decide where you want to run them, then use corner pieces to create cutouts

There's lots of threads/images out there if you do some searching.
Here's one example I found ...

 

Greg P

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Oct 4, 2019
Messages
1,806
Reaction score
1,630
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Burnaby BC
And there's a video ( I haven't watched it)

 
OP
Karen00

Karen00

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Jan 7, 2020
Messages
752
Reaction score
1,151
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Toronto
Avoid using metal framing if at all possible
Thanks for your replies! I watched a bunch of videos and read some threads on here but a lot of them just mentioned using window screen but not whether it was fiberglass or aluminum. Then I started seeing posts about the clear mesh and watched BRSs videos but I think I saw two from them. One was with dark window screen (which was probably an older video) and then the one featuring the kit. At that point I was just stuck trying to make a decision hence my post. Haha. :) Thanks also for mentioning not to use metal of at all possible because I was just about to buy the aluminum frames from Home Depot. LOL Hopefully getting the kit from BRS doesn't bankrupt me. Shipping might be outrageous to get it up here. :)
 
Aquarium Specialty - dry goods & marine livestock
OP
Karen00

Karen00

Well-Known Member
View Badges
Joined
Jan 7, 2020
Messages
752
Reaction score
1,151
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Toronto
Avoid using metal framing if at all possible
I tried searching for plastic frames but couldn't find anything. If you have these where did you get them? BRS doesn't mention what's in their kit so I'm going to contact them. I thought Lowe's or Home Depot would carry them but they don't (at least here in Canada). I thought maybe door/window companies might show up in my search results but still nothing.
 

Billdogg

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Jun 3, 2017
Messages
1,975
Reaction score
2,906
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Grove City, Ohio
To allow for power head cables without a ridiculous number of corner pieces and way too much trouble fitting the screen, I went the simple route.

Make your tops in 2 sections. The back section is 4" x the width of your tank. That is the minimum needed to use standard window screen corners. The front section will be whatever size it needs to be to cover the remainder of the top. For my standard 120, that means I actually have 4 pieces of screen top - 2ea at 4" x 22 3/4" and 2ea at 22 3/4 x 17.

You can then just cut small slits in the back sections of screen to allow passage of cords. The slits will close up around the cords effectively blocking escape for all but the most determined fish.

The back sections remain in place, the front sections are easily removable for feeding/maintenance/etc

60Htf6tl.jpg


r1twzKEl.jpg


HTH
 
Fritz

How long does it take to you to get an inch of acropora growth? (on average)

  • A couple of weeks or less

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Up to 1 month

    Votes: 3 6.1%
  • Up to 2 months

    Votes: 4 8.2%
  • Up to 3 months

    Votes: 8 16.3%
  • Up to 6 months

    Votes: 9 18.4%
  • Up to 12 months

    Votes: 6 12.2%
  • 12+ Months

    Votes: 1 2.0%
  • I can't grow acropora

    Votes: 15 30.6%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 3 6.1%
Top