Shipping Pallet Aqua Garden




Introduction: Shipping Pallet Aqua Garden

The process of brainstorming as a group

The plan we came up with was to create a garden over top of a fish tank. Originally we wanted the garden and fish tank will work to support each other. For example, the garden makes the fish tank look better and actually is in the water and therefore supports that ecosystem. However we ended up doing a different project because of a couple things, one being time constraints and another being some mistaken destruction of materials. To start forming ideas about the way we wanted our project we started to make sketches. We pulled ideas from every group member, we made sure everyone’s idea was incorporated. We created prototypes to make sure we were using all the material in the best way using scaled down cardboard model prototypes. When starting to build the fish tank garden we divided tasks among different group members. This allowed everyone to get work done and feel apart of the project continuously.

Step 1: Materials

1. Materials Needed: Creating prototype/sketches


-Grid Paper




-Tape measure (Inventory)

2. Materials Needed:

Taking Pallet Apart

-Shipping Pallet

-Tape Measure




3. Materials Needed: Building

-Fish Tank

-Cut and measured wood


-Drill Bit


-Tape Measure


-Mechanical Saw Sander or Sanding paper

Step 2: Sketch Prototype

-Get Materials

-Measure Wood (Inventory)

-Sketch out pallet material that you have on grid paper (Be sure to use the squares as an inch) Use the grid paper sketch to create cardboard prototype

Step 3: Cardboard Prototype

-Use grid paper sketch as a guide to cutting out the cardboard prototype

-Create a rectangular shape (Fish Tank)

-Use the sides of the rectangular shape (Fish Tank) to create the garden sides

Step 4: Taking Pallet Apart

-Get necessary tools

-Lay the pallet flat

-Use the crowbar and hammer to pull each piece of wood apart

-After it's taken apart use the back of the hammer to pull the nails out of the wood

-After all the nails are out use sanding paper or sander to make the wood smooth

-Measure the wood after sanding

Step 5: Building

-Get Materials

-Measured the Wood

-Marked point to cut (as a guide)

-The aquarium size is around 24 ½ x 12 ¼ x 16 ¾ (inches)

-Sadly, things don’t always go as planned and the fish tank has a crack!

-Next up we decided to use the not as important piece and cut the ends off to be used as a sort of a base to be used to hold the weight of the aquarium, they were sanded a lot after they were cut to have them all have the same width otherwise the aquarium would seat lopsided.

-Then we measured again on the longer skinnier pieces, 3 ¼ x 39 ¼ and cut them right around 18 inches to be used as legs for the garden and double as a border around the aquarium

-After all 8 leg pieces were cut they were sanded and measured once again to make sure they were still the correct length

-Then the base blocks were screwed together with the legs, creating 4 corners for the border of the aquarium and legs for the garden

-We screwed the two long uncut pieces of wood, 5 x 40, acting as a sort of ladder along the back of the aquarium. They are screwed into the base and are sitting vertically as viewed in the above picture.

-To make the, "rungs", to the before described ladder we attached 4 pieces of wood horizontally, 2 of the 4 are cut to the length of the aquarium so that they don't stick out. The other 2 are left alone, their size still being 3 ¼ x 39 ¼, and this are meant to stick out as they are used later for displaying plants.

Step 6: Staining and Attaching Plants

-After the building of everything that required our pallet wood, we stained it all

-Antique oil finish is what we used to coat all the wood

-We waited for the stain to dry then went over it again with a second coat of stain

-After the second stain coat dried we put on the circle hooks for the flowers


Step 7: Final Product

- We put a tank in between the wood pieces

-We filled the tank up with water and gravel and put it on a table near the sun so the plants don't die

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    3 years ago

    cool project! you will have to move the goldfish to a pond or bigger tank though soon. it's too small for them since they will outgrow the tank. maybe move them to a 100 gallon aquarium and make a huge version of this. :)