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My dream Aquarium

  1. May 25, 2015 #1
    a custom Lexan tank 50"x50"x25", about 500 gallons, lexan 2" send and return pvc style piping going into a fish room. the pergo floor (white oak) will be able to be pulled up to inspect the piping. the fish room will have a medical tank. a breeding tank, a quarantine tank, a plant growing tank and a reserve tank that feeds into the main tank, all about 100 gallons each.

    now on these i'll have a mech filter (riged poly floss, not sure of what angstrom size I want to filter to yet (haven't looked into this stuff in a while)), a diatom filter that only operates once a week for water polishing, a activated carbon filter, a poly filter(for heavy metals), a uv filter, a sand filter for biological filtration, a industrial quartz heater, a chiller and two industrial pumps.

    I want electric ph monitors, hardness monitors, calcium monitors, temp monitors and whatever else I forgot, all of this will be connected to a breakout box with a microcontroller with adc's for the probes and outputs to scr's for the filters and lighting control, it will also monitor the ups and the backup generator. the breakout box will be connected to a panasonic Toughbook with two raid 1 ssd's thru an Ethernet interface, the main reporting program will be written in vb.net interfaced with mssql. the program will log all the probes as well as giving graphical output of water condition so I can record ideal breeding water conditions.

    there will be a water replenishment system that monitors the water level of the tank and automatically add water when the level gets below a certain thresh hold. the water will be put thru a water softener and a reverse osmosis system before going into a reserve tank for conditioning (adding minerals, adjusting ph, temp equalization, heavy metal removal, chlorine, clorimime, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate removal as well as going thru a poly filter and oxygenation with a venturi aerated powerhead.

    i'll have a good microscope as well as dissection tools as well as all the fish medications like dyes, sulfates ect.(sorry can't think of the names off the top of my head.) spare chemicals, a mini fridge with sanfrancico bay brands frozen food(assort.) and hikari dry foods(maybe a few others). a blood worm tank for fresh food and maybe a few others like rotifers, ect.

    all of this on the same network of piping with good ball valves so to change the water all I have to do is turn a few valves(hell I could even automate the water change with solenoid valves)

    they'll be a nice camcorder on a tripod that connects to the computer via usb (or something else, haven't decided yet) and streams the main aquariums activity to a websever on the Toughbook to the outside world so i'll be able to watch my aquarium at work.

    the lighting will be 6500k spectrum florescent(prob zoo med) and sodium halide connected to the breakout box and timed by the computer( will be built into the program and can be changed for optimal breeding conditions).

    I also want a biotope atrium with some birds I believe that live in Colombia (saw them in a rain forest book picture book and they were perfect, will know what the are when I see them again), it will have an assortment of ferns and other plants(what I can find native to south America). on the floor of the atrium I want a brook with nice salamanders and newt, a few red eyed tree frogs.

    ohh and two cats

    anything you guys can add to make this setup perfect?

    edit: I forgot about the protein skimmer
    edit again: this going to be freshwater biotope, amazon, rio negro region.
    Last edited: May 25, 2015
  2. jcsd
  3. May 25, 2015 #2
    Wow that is a very serious setup, but would be amazing to pull off! In college I had 3 30 gallon tanks and had a load of fun with them.
  4. May 25, 2015 #3


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    That sounds like an incredible setup. I've always wanted to set up a nice aquarium, and I will one day. I just don't have the space or the funds right now. Aquariums can certainly get to be a very expensive hobby.
  5. May 31, 2015 #4


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    yup but an enjoyable pastime. I have been doing the tropical fish thing for over 25 years in 2 different countries
    Its quite a good form of stress relief to sit and watch the fish interacting with their environment and each other

  6. May 31, 2015 #5


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    Ah, that takes me back several decades when I had a seriously out-of-control aquarium craze.

    Among several tanks, my largest was 60"x30"x25" (LxHxW). Built it myself out of 1/2" glass. It was fine and wonderful for several years. Then one day I came home to find the base glass had cracked but, fortunately, the tank was still half-full so I was able to rescue the (very large tropical) fish and find new homes for them.

    The cracking was probably caused because it was sitting on plywood, which over the years eventually became damp. Moral: ensure the base plate of the tank is thicker than 1/2", and maybe get some professional engineering advice on how to support it evenly.

    If yours if 50" high, then you've potentially got a bigger challenge than I had. Maybe Lexan is better than toughened glass? But you've done thorough research abot Lexan vs acrylic, right? :oldbiggrin:
  7. Jun 3, 2015 #6


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    In addition to all the things you mention I think some fishes would be nice.
  8. Jun 3, 2015 #7


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    uh huh, does help with the overall appearance :wink:
  9. Jun 3, 2015 #8


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    You should check you math.

    A tank measuring 50" x 50" x 25" has a total volume of 62,500 cubic inches.

    1 U.S. gallon is equivalent to 231 cubic inches. Your tank only has about a 270 gallon capacity. :sorry: :frown:
  10. Jun 4, 2015 #9


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    Having an aquarium to educate my daughter as she was growing up is one thing, but keeping it clean is the reason I don't want one today. Best use for the old thing now is the temporary keeping of snakes, lizards, and other small creatures.
  11. Jun 5, 2015 #10
    maybe I got the calculations wrong, I'm just going by what I did at 12, lets just say I want to keep my fish a secret but the stars of the show will be a school of corydoras. oh and as far as the lexan tank goes the last time I looked at custom made aquariums their was a company called American acrylics who made them but I'm not sure of what type of plastic they used. if my tank isn't at least 500 gal it just means I need to go bigger.
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