approximate costs in USD
- 1/4 inch thick clear acrylic ($40)
- fast set Weld-On 4 with applicator ($10)
- thicker Weld-On 16 tube ($6)
- [OPTIONAL for changing the water by siphon] 1/2" (outer diameter) vinyl tubing
- laser cutter (really expensive - find it at a maker space)
- FLAT silicon plastic heat strip ($50, and this is the specific one I have https://www.amazon.com/Craftics-24-Plastic-Strip-H...)
This Instructable assumes that you have an iMac G3 that you've taken apart. From the iMac you will need FIVE PIECES:
- bottom white plastic case piece
- front white plastic case piece
- back colored plastic case piece
- metal tray that goes on the bottom of the computer
- metal platform that the monitor sits on top of
If you have a computer that has not been taken apart, check out my instructable here: https://www.instructables.com/id/Complete-Dismantling-of-the-IMac-G3/
Getting access to acrylic sheet and a laser cutter sounds hard, but I've lived in Toronto, New York, and San Francisco, and these things were accessible in all three cities. Ask the maker space that hosts the laser cutter - you will likely be required to go through some sort of safety training before being able to use it. You may also be able to convince a kind maker space member to help you cut your acrylic for you.
I haven't used the laser cutter in Toronto, but I've bought plastic at all the places listed and used the laser cutter at NYC Resistor and Noisebridge.
If you LOVE this project and want to read my project diary, it's on Medium: https://medium.com/@ruthgracewong/imac-fish-tank-d...
The tank is made with three pieces of plastic:
- the front-and-sides (this is one piece of plastic with two bends)
- the bottom
- the back
Here is the laser cutting file so you can see the sizes of all the pieces. If you are buying one piece of plastic and your laser cutter is bigger than 4 feet wide, you can get one piece. If you have a smaller laser cutter or are bargain hunting in your plastic place's offcuts bin, you can get multiple pieces. For this project you will need:
one 4 foot by 1 ft piece (if your laser cutter bed is at least 4 feet wide)
OR two pieces: one 29"x10" piece and one 21"x10" piece
OR three pieces: one 29"x10" piece, one 13"x9" piece, and one 8"x10" piece
Note that these are minimum sizes, not exact sizes. You want 1/4 inch thick clear acrylic. It doesn't matter whether it's cast or extruded (I just buy the cheaper kind). If you are getting it from the offcuts bin, beware that it may be scratched. Acrylic scratches easily. If you care a lot about scratches, your plastic store can probably recommend you some acrylic scratch buffer stuff.