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Thread: Dream tank idea

  1. #11

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    I'm with you on the Mattenfilter stuff Malefactor. This whole thing sounds like a really good addition to a tank. I am thinking about an addition to my sump. I am going to draw it up on CATIA and see what I can put into my 75g I'm making into a sump/refugium!!!
    225g: Empty - Converting to saltwater (slowly)
    29g: Blue Gourami - Sterbai Corys - Bumblebee Cats

    RIP - gimpy



  2. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Southern Gorilla View Post
    Sleepingtiger-- The only problem I've had from our mattenfilter is that I didn't secure the ends of the foam properly. So I sometimes find it's slipped and created a gap. I'll fix that on the new tank.
    As for maintenance, ours has been in place for more than a year and I haven't had to touch it.
    Aesthetics are a subjective thing. Our filter quickly turned a pale brown which blends very well with all the plants that surround it. With the new tank the foam would form the end "wall", so would be less noticeable.
    Size is not an issue. If I remember correctly the wall I plan to use is eight feet long. With a wide, deep tank and maybe bowed faces I could get close to 500 gallons there. But I think 3-400 is good enough. The issue then is that the house has a pier & beam foundation. So it will have to be reinforced to handle the weight.
    My wife is quite the enthusiast now. Our first tank was built because she got a free betta from a friend. Rather than put it in a shot glass like most people do to those poor creatures we built a 10-gallon tank around it. It quickly spiraled out of control. Then we got a free 20-gallon and built it up with what we learned from the 10. And we've been talking about upgrading again ever since.

    We've discussed going to a reef tank, but... meh. There's a whole world of planted tanks that hasn't been explored. Yeah, you have those fancy show tanks where guys spend hours every week pruning to make them look like golf courses or something. There's a certain vitality to a heavily planted tank that nothing else matches. Reef tanks are just sand with a lump of rocks/coral in the middle and a ton of empty water. The 'scaped tanks only look pretty if you stay on top of the pruning and put tons of money into supplemental lighting, fertilizer, CO2, and whatnot. I want to explore what I've come to call the "jungle tank" idea. Our current tank is a jungle, but it's too small to allow for any variety in the terrain. Although it seems to be perfect for breeding mollies.

    Lighting is still a confusing topic to me. I know a deep tank will need more powerful lights. But our 20 has gotten by with very cheap lights. So I don't know how far I need to go with the lighting. I'll definitely look into one of those photocontrollers. I'm assuming they offer a manual override so I could turn the lights on after dark to display the tank during parties and such.

    I'll almost certainly build the tank in place rather than try to squeeze it in from outside. That would be a whole lot easier.
    i guess you just view the filter differently than i do. i would want to maximize the space i have in my tank and don't want to waste part of it just for a filter. if you're going with a heavily planted tank with small fish and @ 400gallons, i doubt you will even need a filter. you will only need a small filter for some mechanical filtration.

    wow, you're going to upgrade your foundation of the house for a tank? is this even feasible? who told you that you need to upgrade your foundation?

    i never heard anyone call a reef tank lump of rocks/coral with tons of empty water. LOL you have obviously never seen a reef tank worth anything yet. most technology advancement you see in the wet world is because of saltwater. if you look at anything that relates to aquariums and fish, there is a reason why saltwater makes up about 90% of the market share. if you want to look even closer, reefing probably is 85% of the market and planted tanks is maybe 1% of the market share. There is a reason why most people spend so much money on reefing over planted tanks and its not because it is a lump of rock with tons of empty water. go to any petstore, you will see an entire section dedicated to corals. if you're lucky, they might have more than 1 planted tank or any at all. i don't want to make this saltwater vs freshwater, but you can't deny why reefing is so dominant in our community. and i am a freshwater guy.

    you will some very serious lighting if you want a deep tank. might want to consider metal halides.

    if you go to reefcentral.com, you will find a section for large tank builds. this will give you an idea of what people go through adding such a large tank to there house. but of all those builds, i never seen one where they built the tank inside the house. some guy had a 3000g tank built in arizona i think and had it shipped to canada. he had to knock out a wall/window, used a crane to get the aquarium placed in the house. yes, they used a crane! there are at least 3-4 tank builds where they have to use a crane. anyways, never was building the tank inside the house ever mentioned.

    you're going from a 20g to a 500g. i think you need to do alot more research, i mean alot more. just the thought of you adding a matten filter to such a large tank doesn't sound right. thats like you telling me you saw some seat covers from walmart that you want to add to your bently. sure, it can be done... but why would you want to do such a thing?
    300G, 2 FX5, 1 FX6, Reef Angel Controller
    30+ F1 Frontosa Mpimbwe 4-7"
    16 White Lip Mdoka

    110G
    20+ Red Bishop
    20+ Duboisi



  3. #13

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    I agree with Sleepingtiger about most. I have heard of people beefing up foundation for pier and beam types. As far as concrete foundations, you probably won't need to. If you are having it built then look into structural piers and also post tensioning cables. That will give you the structural stability without having to increase footings.

    Large Tank additions: I would go to various sites and look at their 300+g tank additions (DFWMAS has a LOT of large tank builds in there....). Once you get up to that size, logistics is a nightmare. I am still contemplating the logistics of putting one in as Sleepingtiger knows because we have discussed it in length. Humidity and room drainage are only 2 of the things you need to look into along with what type of paint for the walls. Also, ever think about how your AC and heater vents will affect your tank? I would!!! Above 300g, there is a whole world of contemplations. That size is best with a room behind it for storage and everything....including your filtration. Mattenfilters are great sounding and I will probably integrate it into my sump/refugium but the amount of money to set up that size of a tank and larger is huge!!! (probably $10,000 for 500g or $2000 for 300g and that is tank alone) I wouldn't want to spend that kind of money to set it up so I can reduce the space with a filter (personal preference only!!!). for those sizes of tanks you could buy numerous 100g tanks and do a jumper type. Have the water flow from 1 to the next to the next. 1st to be mattenfilters....then pumped to 2nd which can be whatever and the 3rd to be nothing but return pumps lol (just giving an idea of the possibility).

    Lights: I posted this somewhere else. I'm no expert into lights by no means but in my research...lights have problems in deep tanks. I have looked at many lighting options. There are I wants and there are I needs. They differ quite a bit. I WANT LEDs!!! I NEED lots of PAR to reach the bottom. Radion seems to be good to reach some depths but I have never seen the PAR readings at 36+ inches. I think LEDs are finally being tested enough so we can get good information on them but it's still lacking. MH seems to be the staple of what INTENSITY should be. If you want light to penetrate at a large depth then MH is the must. I personally don't want to go that route so I am still investigating and asking anybody and everybody on other suggestions. I have heard about Finnex being tested by APC recently and the Ray II did the best for PAR and BuildMyLED is supposed to be good. I honestly don't know but for a heavily planted tank....You will spend a TON on lights once you hit 30" or more in water depth sooo keep researching and plan!!!!

    I definitely would love to see this build. I love seeing the plans and how people implement their creativity. Seeing a 300g or bigger "jungle" IMO would be awesome!!! I think that could be just as amazing as a Reef Tank if done properly. I think the only reason we do not see planted tanks in our LFS is because of the amount of maintenance required on them. Pruning, fertilizing, high-tech hookups, etc. LFS employees are paid hourly so having those types of systems would be very costly. I am very impressed by your enthusiasm and I hope you are able to implement your ideas.
    225g: Empty - Converting to saltwater (slowly)
    29g: Blue Gourami - Sterbai Corys - Bumblebee Cats

    RIP - gimpy



  4. #14
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    While I'm no fan of saltwater systems, "a bunch of rocks" sounds more like a FOWLR tank (Fish Only, With Live Rock), not a reef. A reef is more like a box of colorful fuzzy rocks In any case, different people like different things. I doubt I'll ever have a FOWLR tank, perhaps someday a small reef; but I'll always have planted tanks. IMO, the reason you don't see them in the store is simple economics. Freshwater is inexpensive. The more expensive freshwater fish is pretty much were the cheap saltwater stuff starts. Higher prices mean more profit. You can't even compare plants to corals in terms of prices. You can get most of the plants you want for free from club meetings and friends. Corals cost a darn fortune. For sustained success with a reef, you have a TON of equipment to purchase. This means money for the store. You can have success with plants using a Tupperware tub, clip on desk lamps, and dirt from the back yard. Fertilizing plants or feeding corals, I think both probably have similar maintenance requirements. (I'm making a general assumption. I've never had a reef). What ever time you save in trimming plants, you probably lose in mixing/ testing saltwater water, and hand feeding corals.

    Back to the point of monster tanks: For filtration, a tank this large should have a sump. With the amount of equipment involved and the cost going into it, you don't want the display cluttered with anything. Having a sump, you're display will maintain a constant water level and mostly equipment free. If you want an auto-top off, then you don't need to worry about keeping it's profile small. Any auto-dosing of ferts can be hidden, Plus, if you still want an HMF then you can easily setup one with multiple layers of increasing PPI in the sump. This time with the advantage that when you go to clean them, you can turn off the pump, pull the mats, clean up the mess, and leave the fish none the wiser in the display.
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  5. #15

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    i cant even imagine the logistics for a 500g. i would almost say that an aquarium that size needs to be, in the wall or be used as a center piece display where it is viewable from all sides. if its in the wall, the room behind the wall needs to be dedicated to that tank only. this could include a dedicated dehumidifier, ac unit, electrical panel.

    if it is used as a centerpiece in the middle of the room. one of the most important things is having a plumbing and electrical pre ran if you're building your house or you will have to tear into your foundation to run your plumbing and electrical. will also require dedicated vents.

    i remember a guy on the net boasting his 10,000g tank build on the net. a few years later, he had to tear it down because the humidity was rotting our his house.
    300G, 2 FX5, 1 FX6, Reef Angel Controller
    30+ F1 Frontosa Mpimbwe 4-7"
    16 White Lip Mdoka

    110G
    20+ Red Bishop
    20+ Duboisi



  6. #16

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    Is it legal to update a 4-yr old thread? Not that I'm one to worry much about what's legal.

    As you might have guessed, this never happened. The deal for the house fell through thanks to a lying mortgage broker. We lost $2,500 in earnest money and the entire experience left me even more psychotic than before.

    But my ideas for this tank haven't changed much and I do still think about it daily while sitting here looking at our 75g.

    We are currently renting another house. We talk about buying it, but there's no plan in the works for that yet. If we do, then the monster tank is going to be built. The idea now is to make a peninsula tank separating an entry foyer from the main living area. There are currently two living rooms with a dividing wall between them. The plan is to knock out the dividing wall and turn the front room into a nice foyer. The tank would be truly massive, something on the order of a thousand gallons. The filtration would be handled by pool/pond equipment accessed from the adjoining garage.

    Of course, this is just a dream at the moment. But maybe the thought will inspire somebody else to go for it. At least I'm fortunate in that my wife is as obsessed with the idea of a giant tank as I am. We both think our 75g is tiny. It's only the fact that we don't own the property holding us back at the moment.



  7. #17

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    So to add a little bit of optimism to your dream ( we all have our own dreams too), a pier and beam foundation can be 'upgraded' by stacking cinder blocks underneath the floor where the corners of the tank are to support the joists. An added bonus is the same can be done for interior doors that don't shut properly due to a sagging frame. Honestly, it is much easier (and much less traumatic when something goes wrong) to have an aquarium room of smaller tanks.

    I really do hope you are able to build your dream. It sounds a lot like mine and your situation is similar as well.

    Some other thoughts: plants in general love to take over under different circumstances. Mostly lighting decides which plant takes over. Use the deep tank to this advantage and provide small spots of high light using pendant lighting to keep the fast growers confined naturally to one area. Planting on driftwood/trees would be another way to confined a fast growing species.
    Last edited by Virc003; 02-16-2018 at 09:26 PM.


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  8. #18
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    keep at it and your fishy dreams will eventually happen, I've been dreaming of a large fish room for years and this weekend I'm taking one of the first steps towards making it a reality
    Plecos are like Pokemon you gotta catch them all!!!!!!!



  9. #19

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    Sounds great. As far as lighting... Give the guys at 21LED a call. They’re based in Ft Worth and have premium quality lights at insane prices. I’ve been running their lights for a over a year and absolutely love them. I just purchased a new set up from them that I’ll be using on my 125. They also sell the sunsetter timer that gradually increases/decreases the lights to mimic sunrise and sunset. I used to run Current USA lights with good success until I had a problem with their timer and found out their customer service was awful. Found 21 LED and never plan on using anything else (unless they go out of business). Plus, if something goes wrong I can always drive to Ft Worth and complain in person.


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  10. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by coolnametaken View Post
    Sounds great. As far as lighting... Give the guys at 21LED a call. They’re based in Ft Worth and have premium quality lights at insane prices. I’ve been running their lights for a over a year and absolutely love them. I just purchased a new set up from them that I’ll be using on my 125. They also sell the sunsetter timer that gradually increases/decreases the lights to mimic sunrise and sunset. I used to run Current USA lights with good success until I had a problem with their timer and found out their customer service was awful. Found 21 LED and never plan on using anything else (unless they go out of business). Plus, if something goes wrong I can always drive to Ft Worth and complain in person.
    on their website it seems like all the aquarium lights are intended for reefs. do they offer warmer colors?



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