Ambitious 2 tank system with fish bridge and foam rock aquascape *New pics 5-4-11
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:10 PM   #1
fishbreath
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Ambitious 2 tank system with fish bridge and foam rock aquascape *New pics 5-4-11





I had been thinking for a long time about setting up 2 tanks, a few feet apart with a tube connecting the tanks that the fish could use to travel back and forth between the tanks. My step-daughter recently got married and I was given permission from my better half to turn one of our bedrooms (no longer needed as a bedroom) into a "man-cave". So my plan was to get an "L" shaped desk to use in a corner of the room and set up a tank on each "wing" of the desk. The tube will go across the middle of the desk over my computer monitor. I have purchased 2 tanks used, that I was told were 40 and 50 gallons but using a formula I found and plugging in the inner measurements, they're 27 and 33 gallons. I'm not sure, though, because they look a whole lot bigger than my 20 long.
Another aspect of this system is that I'm planning on running a water supply that will trickle in about a gallon a day of fresh water for about a 7 gallon a week automatic water change. I have a HOB overflow that will drain off the overflow from the water supply.
The aquascape is created with lace rock attached to an eggcrage (drop ceiling flourescent light diffuser) framework, with the gaps filled in with expanding foam. The foam is then painted with 2 part finishing exopy and sprinkled with sand to make it look like rock. I have used this technique with 3 previous reef tanks and 1 previous planted tank and was very pleased with the results.

Last edited by fishbreath; 05-04-2011 at 08:33 PM..
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:22 PM   #2
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The lighting is from 2 AquaticLife T5 fixtures that have 3 built in timers for 2 different sets of bulbs (daylight and actinic for reef tanks) and LED moonlights. The actinic bulbs have been replaced with 6700K bulbs.
The filter is a Marineland 350 Pro canister filter with a Hydor in line heater. The output from the filter, after passing through the in-line heater, is directed to one tank at a time using a SCWD therefore creating an alternating flow through the fish bridge. The fish bridge is made from 2" square tubing, cut at each end on a 45 degree angle, then glued back together forming a u shaped tube 40" long with 8" downtubes going in to each tank.
I'll have some pics to post later today with what I've done so far. The hardscape of the bigger of the 2 tanks is essentially done. The tube is done. I will be starting on the aquascaping of the 2nd tank in the next day or so.

Last edited by fishbreath; 11-29-2009 at 12:21 AM..
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:37 PM   #3
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Here's tank #1 with the eggcrate frame in place.


This end is where the tube enters the tank for the fish bridge. The little walls in the foreground are the front of what will be raised planting areas.


This part will conceal the filter intake and output.


Beginning the "foaming in" process.


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Old 11-28-2009, 07:43 PM   #4
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This is the outflow from the filter. The intake tube is also inside this piece. I left plenty of gaps between the rocks in this piece for water to get back there.


This is the foam and epoxy I used.



Beginning the epoxy/sand part.

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Old 11-28-2009, 07:43 PM   #5
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Cool project! Subscribed!
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:48 PM   #6
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Starting to come together.



Modified overflow for the auto-water change system.

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Old 11-28-2009, 07:56 PM   #7
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This is really cool. I have dreamed of doing a "fish bridge" thing for a while, ever since I saw that one guys house who had the "bridges" going all over his house lol.
Those rocks look really good!
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Old 11-28-2009, 07:59 PM   #8
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WoW! This is awsome! I cant wait to see it finished!
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Old 11-28-2009, 08:20 PM   #9
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Thanks, Jake and CL.
Here's a pic of the fish bridge. I had just applied the vinyl background. There are small lips on each end of the tube because I plan on having about 1/4" of substrate on the bottom and I don't want it to get washed out the ends of the tube with the current.


This pic was taken on the desk. You can see the 2x10 re-enforcement I built under the desk to support the tanks.
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Old 11-28-2009, 08:26 PM   #10
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Very cool! Why bother with the rocks if you just cover them up?
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Old 11-28-2009, 08:31 PM   #11
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borat would say
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Old 11-28-2009, 08:34 PM   #12
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This is really impressive
your rock building is giving me ideas for my hexagon tank..hmmm
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Old 11-28-2009, 09:16 PM   #13
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a guy at loaches online has a multi tank bridge thingy

I d like to know how this this "weathers" long term as id like to the same for my loach tank
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Old 11-28-2009, 09:21 PM   #14
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Fishbreath,

great idea. And great setup for the journal. Thanks for taking the time to lay it out on such detail. Looking forward to seeing it progress. Great work.

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Old 11-29-2009, 12:19 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmccreedy View Post
Very cool! Why bother with the rocks if you just cover them up?
The rocks are not covered up. The foam is used just to fill in the gaps between the rocks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fishman9809 View Post
borat would say
Quote:
Originally Posted by liquidxshadowz View Post
This is really impressive
your rock building is giving me ideas for my hexagon tank..hmmm
Thanks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by newshound View Post
a guy at loaches online has a multi tank bridge thingy

I d like to know how this this "weathers" long term as id like to the same for my loach tank
Newshound, if you could post a link, I'd really appreciate it. I researched the web about connecting tanks like this and there wasn't a whole lot out there.
I have a reef tank with this stuff that's been up and running for over 2 years without any problem. This technique has been used for a while now with the SW crowd.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NJAquaBarren View Post
Fishbreath,

great idea. And great setup for the journal. Thanks for taking the time to lay it out on such detail. Looking forward to seeing it progress. Great work.

AB
Thanks, AB.
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