Keeping the wiring under your aquarium tidy?
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Old 08-27-2014, 01:12 AM   #1
mistuhmarc
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Keeping the wiring under your aquarium tidy?


So I'm sure everyone has had the situation in which their tank looks nice, but the bottom is completely riddled with wires. Having a rack and not a stand, all the wires are sitting out all over the place. If you guys have any way of tidying up the wires what do you do? What do you suggest? I have one of those home depot racks so I'm trying to make it look as clean as possible. Thanks!
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Old 08-27-2014, 01:54 AM   #2
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You can use Tie-Wraps (zip ties) or plastic conduit to bundle all of those power cords.
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Old 08-27-2014, 01:58 AM   #3
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You can get velcro reusable wire ties at wallymart, lowes, home despot.....
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Old 08-27-2014, 02:02 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FatherLandDescendant View Post
You can get velcro reusable wire ties at wallymart, lowes, home despot.....
+1, that is also a good idea.
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Old 08-27-2014, 04:43 AM   #5
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If you have an electronics store that deals in computers, phones and such, they will likely have cord retainers of all types. The one I find handy is the plastic spiral wrap. It comes in all kinds of sizes for different size wire bundles.

I also find this type handy?
http://www.frys.com/product/1997187?...H:MAIN_RSLT_PG
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Old 08-27-2014, 05:59 AM   #6
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Interesting! Thanks for letting me know. I'm planning to make the area look tidier so my room actually looks nicer in the long run haha. The first thing that people would see if they entered my room would be my aquarium, and it would be a shame if it just looked messy.
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Old 08-27-2014, 06:22 AM   #7
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I love zip ties. I zip tie the electrical cords along the back edges of the rack so they're not visible, or minimally visible from the front.
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Old 08-27-2014, 07:22 AM   #8
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Wire ties only once your system is in really final shape. It's a huge PITA to make a single equipment change once everything is really secured down.

A good temporary solution for wires you may be moving is twist ties. I just keep all the little ones you get every time you buy anything electronic, and I have a free collection of various sizes for any needs.

Either way, these little things are awesome for organization.
Amazon.com: 100 Pcs 20mm x 20mm x 4mm Self Adhesive Cable Tie Mount Base Holders Black: Home Improvement Amazon.com: 100 Pcs 20mm x 20mm x 4mm Self Adhesive Cable Tie Mount Base Holders Black: Home Improvement
Thread a zip tie (or twist tie) though and you have a handy mounting point anywhere.

Velcro ties work well also. You can also buy rolls of the stuff, double-sided that you just cut to the size needed and wrap around itself.
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Old 08-27-2014, 01:19 PM   #9
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I hate zip ties for anything that's not permanent. For everything else, I have a big roll of bulk double sided velcro. Just search amazon for velcro roll. It works just as good as zip ties, except you can undo it quickly and easily, and reuse it.
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Old 08-27-2014, 01:46 PM   #10
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+ 1 on the spiral wrap, easy to take off if you need to change something
This is the type I use
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Old 08-27-2014, 03:03 PM   #11
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One of the biggest secrets to having good looking wiring is to make sure everything is the right length. Nothing looks worse than a tangle of excess cord.

Since it is usually impractical to splice power cords to length, this normally means making a neat coil of the extra length and hiding it somewhere discrete.
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Old 08-28-2014, 03:03 AM   #12
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If you get into using the spiral wrap but it is still too flexible to stand up straight and hide behind a leg, there are tricks!
Get the wrap a bit bigger and wrap a small dowel or stiff wire in with the cords to make it all stand up straight.
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Old 08-28-2014, 05:11 AM   #13
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I come from a studio background so an aquarium is fairly simple. First, never wrap wires together unless it's a system. For example, if you have two lights, you can wrap them in some cable wrap/wire loom, same with a heater and temp probe but if it isn't a system, don't bother, it will bother you more by doing so. Use power strips for systems. I only use two, one for lighting and CO2, the other for my filter, heater and UV. That way you turn off the right thing while doing a water change or maintenance, but you still have the systems you want on while doing so. You may not care to have the CO2 on during the water change, but, your timer may reset or get off if it's mechanical so it's worth doing, IMO.

Wire tie, velco wire strip is very nice. I use this for wires that are really long. At one point, I think I had about 90% of the stand taken up when I had autodosing, inline heater, UV, etc. Make sure you can get to everything without ripping everything out, enough slack to move anything that is in front of something else, try to make it so you don't need to move stuff. Now my tank follow more of the KISS method so way less wiring.


The only thing I struggle with is a place for my dry ferts. I have plenty of room in the stand, just not at the bottom. I may make a little drawer up top for my every day things that are not powered or something.
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Old 08-28-2014, 05:46 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mayanjungledog View Post
I love zip ties. I zip tie the electrical cords along the back edges of the rack so they're not visible, or minimally visible from the front.
Quote:
Originally Posted by kman View Post
Wire ties only once your system is in really final shape. It's a huge PITA to make a single equipment change once everything is really secured down.

A good temporary solution for wires you may be moving is twist ties. I just keep all the little ones you get every time you buy anything electronic, and I have a free collection of various sizes for any needs.

Either way, these little things are awesome for organization. Amazon.com: 100 Pcs 20mm x 20mm x 4mm Self Adhesive Cable Tie Mount Base Holders Black: Home Improvement Thread a zip tie (or twist tie) though and you have a handy mounting point anywhere.

Velcro ties work well also. You can also buy rolls of the stuff, double-sided that you just cut to the size needed and wrap around itself.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherHobby View Post
I hate zip ties for anything that's not permanent. For everything else, I have a big roll of bulk double sided velcro. Just search amazon for velcro roll. It works just as good as zip ties, except you can undo it quickly and easily, and reuse it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tankedagain View Post
+ 1 on the spiral wrap, easy to take off if you need to change something
This is the type I use
Quote:
Originally Posted by 691175002 View Post
One of the biggest secrets to having good looking wiring is to make sure everything is the right length. Nothing looks worse than a tangle of excess cord.

Since it is usually impractical to splice power cords to length, this normally means making a neat coil of the extra length and hiding it somewhere discrete.
Quote:
Originally Posted by PlantedRich View Post
If you get into using the spiral wrap but it is still too flexible to stand up straight and hide behind a leg, there are tricks!
Get the wrap a bit bigger and wrap a small dowel or stiff wire in with the cords to make it all stand up straight.
Quote:
Originally Posted by talontsiawd View Post
I come from a studio background so an aquarium is fairly simple. First, never wrap wires together unless it's a system. For example, if you have two lights, you can wrap them in some cable wrap/wire loom, same with a heater and temp probe but if it isn't a system, don't bother, it will bother you more by doing so. Use power strips for systems. I only use two, one for lighting and CO2, the other for my filter, heater and UV. That way you turn off the right thing while doing a water change or maintenance, but you still have the systems you want on while doing so. You may not care to have the CO2 on during the water change, but, your timer may reset or get off if it's mechanical so it's worth doing, IMO.

Wire tie, velco wire strip is very nice. I use this for wires that are really long. At one point, I think I had about 90% of the stand taken up when I had autodosing, inline heater, UV, etc. Make sure you can get to everything without ripping everything out, enough slack to move anything that is in front of something else, try to make it so you don't need to move stuff. Now my tank follow more of the KISS method so way less wiring.


The only thing I struggle with is a place for my dry ferts. I have plenty of room in the stand, just not at the bottom. I may make a little drawer up top for my every day things that are not powered or something.
All good replies. The idea of using a separate power strip for the light and co2 system and another for the filter, heater and such was actually a not bad idea. I might go with that and then velcro wrap everything to make it look neater. Thanks guys! That was some nice replies I've gotten.
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Old 08-28-2014, 07:02 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by talontsiawd View Post
I come from a studio background so an aquarium is fairly simple. First, never wrap wires together unless it's a system. For example, if you have two lights, you can wrap them in some cable wrap/wire loom, same with a heater and temp probe but if it isn't a system, don't bother, it will bother you more by doing so. Use power strips for systems. I only use two, one for lighting and CO2, the other for my filter, heater and UV. That way you turn off the right thing while doing a water change or maintenance, but you still have the systems you want on while doing so. You may not care to have the CO2 on during the water change, but, your timer may reset or get off if it's mechanical so it's worth doing, IMO.
if your reactor is inline, the solenoid should be together with the power strip for filters. so when you turn off the filters, the reactor doesn't get filled with too much undissolved co2 gas.
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