Connecting 7 tanks, plans drawn up. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-17-2011, 03:49 AM Thread Starter
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Connecting 7 tanks, plans drawn up.

So I'm connecting two 20g, three 10g, and two 2.5g tanks with a 10g sump. Here are some various sketches I've made, none finished.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-17-2011, 03:55 AM Thread Starter
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Instead of using pipe I was thinking about making four sided glass pipes and seal them around the holes in the bottom of the upper tanks. Obviously the upper tanks will be airtight and I'm going to silicone glass into place as the roof. I've figured out the flow to get all tanks cleaned while the water moves left to right. My only concern is that the current may be too strong in the 2.5's so I might use a small fish-free pipe to take some of the current out of the 2.5g aquarium bridges.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-17-2011, 04:07 PM
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All aquariums require regular maintenance, cleaning the glass, water changes or topping up, removing dead plant mattter, pruning plants, etc. When you link all of the tanks together like this don't you make doing that maintenance much more difficult? And, of course, with all of the tanks sharing the same water, a problem in one tank soon becomes a problem in all of them.

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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-19-2011, 12:27 AM Thread Starter
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It's going to be a slow transition to connect them, right now I'm just connecting the 2 twenty gallon. and from all that I've read, having them connected has more upsides than down. I don't know if all will be connected with aquabridges, probably just going to use pvc to connect the water and not the fish. I'm still trying to find a sump pump that isn't ridiculously expensive, the.ones at LFS are $80+ and Idk what gallons per hour i need.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-19-2011, 08:53 PM
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Why not just put an overflow in each tank, and use a central sump. Sounds much simpler to me, with none of the pains of the aquabridges.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-19-2011, 11:02 PM
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What exactly is the upside of putting in all this work?

Aside from the theoretical water parameter stability brought by the combined volume?

Just did a quick google search : A Rio 2100 is $46.99 at marine depot. I'm sure there are many other different pumps available at different prices at different online vendors.

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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-20-2011, 04:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zergling View Post
What exactly is the upside of putting in all this work?

Aside from the theoretical water parameter stability brought by the combined volume?
haha no theory but reality. As environmentalists are so fond of saying; the solution to pollution is dilution.
Larger volume equals more stable parameters without a doubt.
Breeder/parent raising 55g, 20T pair tank, 10g fry and or shrimp tank.



With the tanks chained together in the setup below the 20's are 80g equivalent and the 10's 40 gallon on the combined water columns.
Separate tanks allow fish of different sizes/types without predation but retain the larger water volume for filtering effect.
The sump will have a huge moss ball in the middle but is not needed as yet.

Upper tank water movement is a single 5w power head tubed to a spraybar.

Lower rack is filtered by a Mattenfilter sump, the pump is
20w, rated at 250gph at this height (another biggrin )



Less equipment, less power consumption, larger water column.

I see all that as a win.


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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-20-2011, 07:26 AM
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Oh I know and understand the concept very well. I just didn't think that all the time and effort for the stability is worth the risk of getting all tanks infected by any sickness popping up in one. There's the risks of one or more pipes getting clogged or something.

Admittedly, I've never tried this kind of setup, so I don't know it as well as you do - but in my limited knowledge, drilling overflows in the tanks and having one big sump seems to be a better approach, at least for the capability to disconnect one tank without disrupting the entire system.

But hey, if it works for you, then great!

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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-20-2011, 08:28 AM
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Originally Posted by zergling View Post
Oh I know and understand the concept very well. I just didn't think that all the time and effort for the stability is worth the risk of getting all tanks infected by any sickness popping up in one...
The risk of infection across a set of connected tanks is no greater than that of a larger, mixed specimen tank in and of itself if you're using proper quarantine procedures. I don't see a need to be phobic about it (not singling out a particular response, but commenting on the fact that it's appeared across multiple contributors).

To the OP:

EDIT -

Here is a link to the thread Large water changes (> 50%) OK on a regular basis? over at the Barr Report's Forums where I outline the original concept I used when setting up a Circulating Range as it's known. I often do this when setting up breeding tanks for Apistos, and I use PVC piping and an air pump to maintain everything for ease of setup and breakdown.

The only thing I see about the interconnecting glass tunnels you mentioned is the loss of seperation between the affected tanks - unless you plan for the obvious when setting up. Reading that reminded me of an article about ten years ago in either TFH or FAMA where an enthusiast had essentially extended his tank throughout the entire house using very large-diameter, clear plexi for the tunnels...

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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-20-2011, 04:52 PM
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Word of the day here is phobic. I had to review it's definition to determine it's use in the statement LOL (interesting)

Unable to sleep and surfing the forum I saw the original post within minutes, thought it interesting and remembered what caused me to do it here originally. Then moved on reading other new threads. Didn't post a comment until 3/3 of his responses showed no encouragement for his project.
Another word, the use of 'theoretical' was the only reason I included the quote in my response then went on with a short list on what I see as benefits. Not that I disliked it, but it seemed funny to word it that way as water volume to my understanding is one of the greatest stabilizers. Cross contamination concerns I wasn't addressing at all feeling quarantine, husbandry for a single or multiple tanks to be the same. 125g in a single tank or 125g in 4 linked tanks to be no different. Separate the tanks with individual overflows all linked in a common sump they are still linked in a common water flow so I see no gain. Also water pressure for individual returns would require a larger pump than a single return to provide the same turn over to each tank. In the system I created a single pump rated at 20w and 250gph is used. Surely no one thinks I could split that into three separate returns and maintain flow. What difference or impact would separate returns provide? I didn't see any, just more power consumption.

While my arrangement isn't 'as pretty' as drilling and hard piped racks it works and is easily adjusted if the need arises. Born from a need and at a time when funding was limited it proved to work extremely well so I expanded on it. Hobby breeding angelfish has become the direction of this hobby for me and fry care includes a rather critical focus on water quality.

1st stage free swimmers aren't very hearty nor are they very bright. In nature pairs only need produce 2 to maintain the species. Open water free swimmers are tiny with no defense except the parents. They aren't even smart enough to hide in moss. Even if they did shrimp or any small fish can kill baby angels for about a month if not slightly longer. Feeding BBS 2x or 3x daily in 5 or 10g fry tanks the water can become fouled daily requiring water changes. Even slightly dirty conditions ruin whole spawns. Near sterile bare tank breeding wasn't what I was interested in. Not disputing the facts that smaller containers and feeding live food early on work best the daily water changes become tedious. Options and compromises are what I looked for.

Sump and overflow arrangement didn't work well for me as the fry were drawn onto the weirs and lost. Screening the overflow was the closest I ever came to flooding my house. Siphon and sponge have proven completely safe for any young animal and never threatened a mess to date (>4yrs).
Starting with this simple arrangement provided my first success.



I've simply expanded on it.
Doing the full rack this year keeps the hobby interesting for me.
It is more cost effective then drilling for any number of reasons. Eliminates the tool cost/efforts of drilling and the cost of bulkheads down to the reduced demand for return flow from the sump. All the things I looked at seemed reasonable and cost effective. It has worked.

OP, I hope you continue to adjust you're systems playing with different arrangements, to me it's half the fun.


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