So recently I upgraded my dwarf shrimp from a 5.5 gallon to a 20 gallon low-tech planted tank. However the shelf I had previously used to house the nano tank was too weak to hold anything more than what it was. (The shelf already showed a slight bow in the middle after 8 months which is what prompted me to make the conversion)
Below are some pictures of my process, just for reference, and for advice/criticisms. I'm a rather new aquarist (began with a 2 gallon cube and 3 ghost shrimp back in August 2017 knowing nothing about the hobby, thankfully I had this forum to help me, and I'm a pretty fast learner.)
I began by purchasing two-by-fours from Lowe's and having them cut them to the precise length of my bookcase's shelves. I also purchased a .75 inch thick wooden board that was the same width as my shelves and had them cut in to 13.75 inch sections. When I got home I used a jigsaw to cut slots in to the boards so that they could interlock with the 2x4's after being glued and screwed to the underside of both shelves. In the end I got 6 nice square cubbies for storage of supplies and a much more appropriately-braced shelf.
Next I attached a T made of 2x4's to the back of the shelf the tank would be resting on (since the width of the tank was wider than the shelf, and I needed to make sure it was supported and not overhanging by an inch and a half.) I glued and screwed the T to the shelves, then sanded meticulously to get it level with the shelf. After checking the level, I applied some 100% silicone sealant and painted it with a putty knife until it filled in the cracks and made the surface smooth enough for my liking.
Next the tank goes in, the back of the bookshelf gets re-attached, and I build two more small shelves to fit snugly to either side of the tank, giving it a nice recessed feel!
Hardscape is in, plants are planted, water is still a bit cloudy as the Cascade 400 boots up for the first time!
The old 5.5 gallon's Top-Fin HOB is hanging on the outside of the tank, where it will stay for a few months until the Cascade develops its own bacteria. Looks like the water cleared up overnight, time to condition the shrimp and add them to the new tank.
Looks like the inhabitants are having a good time after a few days. The shrimplets are still alive and swimming around happily too! The move, while tedious, was a success!
Supplies used for the build :
Black & Decker BDEJS600C Jigsaw
Black & Decker AS6NG Cordless Power Screwdriver
Black & Decker FS540 1/4" Sheet Sander
$50 worth of lumber from Lowe's
A $7 tube of silicone sealant from Walmart
Tank inhabitants :
10~ Sakura/Cherry Neocaridina Shrimp
10~ Blue Velvet/Carbon Kili Neocaridina Shrimp
2 Zebra Nerites
Anubias Nana Petite
Microsorum Pteropus (Narrow leaf and Windelov)
NO COJ, dosing with complete round of Seachem ferts weekly.