DIY tank height/extension for floating plants

  • pepetj
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pepetj created the topic: DIY tank height/extension for floating plants

You probably know that I am totally biased in favor of planted tanks. I have been experimenting, with mixed results in keeping plants in my Oscars' tank.

I am still experimenting with this idea, which likely will take some months ahead, as I continue to learn from my particular owned/cared-for pair of Oscars. There are enough anecdotal reports on intra-species differences in regard of a miriad of behaviors for fishes like Oscars, one of them concerns the co-existence of Oscars and plants.

My particular tank set-up, as well as my results so far, may or may not be duplicated with another pair of Oscars, but at least you could decide if give this a try.

A few days ago (December 13th, 2008) I purchased some aquatic plants, among them water lettuce and water orchids. These plants are not hard to find locally and their cost is around USD 0.15 per unit, farm raised in a "in-country store" 15 minutes outside my city.

I had to lower the water level in my tank a few inches to place them. This meant removing roughly 25UK gallons, which left my tank with barely 95+UKgals of water. To solve this problem, I came up with this simple idea, on which I am working at the moment. Building a height extension out of 1/8" thick non-tempered glass shouldn't be hard.

I spent a bit under USD29.00 to build this. I paid a glass technician to cut/sand the glass pieces which I glued using clear Epoxy to assembly the parts. I placed a 36"x13" hood assembly and a 36" light strip behind it.

I am sharing this ongoing idea so you help me improving it. The rear section, which I designed with cut-out parts for the HOBs, was discarded due to difficulty and cost (the glass technician suggested I used plexiglass/acrylic instead of glass); I modified it by using small pieces (2 and 2.5" L x 7" H of the same 1/8" thick glass) and intend to cover the open spaces with plastic knitting grids (easy to cut with regular scissors. looks better than egg-crate and quite inexpensive).









Pepe
Santo Domingo

Tank #4: Heavily Planted 121UKgal.
2 paired-off Tiger Oscars 13\" ea. + 2 paired-off Angelfish 4.5\" ea. + 2 pairs of paired-off Convicts 4\" ea. + 17 Silver Dollars 2.5-3\" ea. + 6 Kenyi 4 to 5\" ea.
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PAUL replied the topic: Re:DIY tank height/extension for floating plants

hi pepe,

my only worry in the extender is the accidental leakage.
yes glass tank can be extended but the risk of water leak
is high. i am sure you don't like wet flooring or stinking
floor carpet once it was flooded.

a few inch water loss will comensurate for the benefits of the
plants. and mind you, with a lot of those water lettuce floating
on top of your tank, you will be surprised your water will be in
good shape with minimal water change. plants will take care of your
ammonia, nitrates, and nitrites. (see my post in minimal water change)
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  • biggamehunter
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biggamehunter replied the topic: Re:DIY tank height/extension for floating plants

great idea ...the water doesnt actualy go any higher than a full tank ?????does it, i see the ethics behind this and you get to keep your tank full to the brim AND keep room for the floating plants..does the extention sit on the old lid rebates?????????????? how do i make one for a BOWFRONT?????HA HA HA
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  • Necromancer4
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Necromancer4 replied the topic: Re:DIY tank height/extension for floating plants

fabulous creation. i bow to your ingenuity on this design. this should satisfy your need totally. great work

Warning..I will offend you at some point!!!


my goal is simple a complete understanding of the universe, why it is as it is and why it exists at all
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pepetj replied the topic: Re:DIY tank height/extension for floating plants

biggamehunter wrote:

great idea ...the water doesnt actualy go any higher than a full tank ?????does it, i see the ethics behind this and you get to keep your tank full to the brim AND keep room for the floating plants..does the extention sit on the old lid rebates?????????????? how do i make one for a BOWFRONT?????HA HA HA


I have no idea on bowfront tanks, that's a tough one.

You are right, the water never reaches the extension, I keep the tank full as originally designed for. The glass is thin enough so it doesn't overload the tank's top rim, where it sits.

I guess the leakage risk is the same as with a standard canopy (I've had my share already); I am more concerned about fish jumping out of the tank.

Pepe
Santo Domingo

Tank #4: Heavily Planted 121UKgal.
2 paired-off Tiger Oscars 13\" ea. + 2 paired-off Angelfish 4.5\" ea. + 2 pairs of paired-off Convicts 4\" ea. + 17 Silver Dollars 2.5-3\" ea. + 6 Kenyi 4 to 5\" ea.
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PAUL replied the topic: Re:DIY tank height/extension for floating plants

pepe,
when you have plenty of flaoting plants, fish flight is
minimal but precaution is better than dead fish..... lid
is still recommended. try to post your water reading when
having a lots of plants. i'm sure you will be surprised even
without changing your water as you used to do.

biggamehunter,
if you want to put extender to your bow tank, used 3mm thick
fiberglass. it is easy to bend and follow the contour of your
original tank with minor heating. with silicon sealant on the
rim, it will be as good as the regular shape one.
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biggamehunter replied the topic: Re:DIY tank height/extension for floating plants

thanks paul 3mm acrylic(perspex) would be good too as it would easily bend to the shape.....i was just trying to be clever but looks like you come up
with a good soloution!!!!!!!!!!!!! theres always a genius out there some wHare ...but i got you with my "EMERGENCY" tho.......HAHAHA
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PAUL replied the topic: Re:DIY tank height/extension for floating plants

yah, its true...you had me with that one.
what is worse,,,, my wife see me laughing
all alone in my table..... she thought i am
losing my mind.....
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pepetj replied the topic: Re:DIY tank height/extension for floating plants

Update: I ended up re-designing the whole thing. 1/8" thick glass turned out to be too thin.

I used 1/4" thick glass and used a plastic connector which used to hold my old DIY glass canopies sheets.

Here are some pics with this easy to assembly and keep clean design (only one half of the tank shown). I paid a glass technician to cut and polish the pieces for me.






Pepe
Santo Domingo

Tank #4: Heavily Planted 121UKgal.
2 paired-off Tiger Oscars 13\" ea. + 2 paired-off Angelfish 4.5\" ea. + 2 pairs of paired-off Convicts 4\" ea. + 17 Silver Dollars 2.5-3\" ea. + 6 Kenyi 4 to 5\" ea.
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  • Necromancer4
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Necromancer4 replied the topic: Re:DIY tank height/extension for floating plants

looks good pepe. cant wait to see it with plants in there

Warning..I will offend you at some point!!!


my goal is simple a complete understanding of the universe, why it is as it is and why it exists at all
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