One of the big drawbacks I have read about and personally experienced with the Eclipse system of tanks is that the hood assembly makes it a nightmare to get inside the tank and muck around. The opening in the hood is tiny, and divided by a bar, which makes it difficult if not impossible to get your hand/arm in there and do anything.
, the entire hood assembly easily tilts backward, in effect being a giant hood-lid that gives your full access to your aquarium. The drawback is that it has to be held in place while you work inside the tank.
What I ended up doing was attaching the entire hood to the back of the tank using small hinges and aquarium sealant. This allows you to just lift the hood-lid up and get in and do whatever you want. As a bonus, the hood-lid is not actually
connected to the tank itself, but rather to the lip which sits on top of the tank. That means you can still take the whole top off if you need to, instead of just opening the hood/lid up.
Here are pics. Sorry the hinges cannot be shown better or from another angle, but the tank cannot be moved while full, and I did not take any "in the process" pics of adding the hinges.
1. Here are the hinges. One side (top) is "glued" to the back of the hood with aquarium sealant, the other side (bottom) is "glued" to the back of the lip/rim of the tank.
2. Here is the raised "hood-lid". You can easily tip it all the way back to get full access to your tank, without having to worry about dropping it.
I hope this helps some people! I find the Eclipse tank to be a perfect, low-maintenance and simple tank, great for starting out or for a simple setup. Having everything in the hood has its drawbacks, but as you can see this can help reduce them.