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5' Rimless - The Malaysian Driftwood Installation

54720 Views 797 Replies 56 Participants Last post by  EmotionalFescue
I have been picking away at this project for a little while: building a light mount, gathering equipment, etc... Just this evening I was finally able to get the tank itself onto the stand (it has been in the garage waiting on sufficient muscle and planning to make the move into the house). I figure this is a good time to start a journal.

Here's where things stand as of this evening:

Window Wood Twig Rectangle Art


Table Furniture Property Picture frame Building


Wood Building Couch Floor Art


Some of you may be familiar with this space, as it is the same spot that previously housed a 68g chronicled in this tank journal. As I came to realize (and note in that journal), this is the best spot in my house for a larger tank due to the arrangement of floor joists for the main level, which sits above a full unfinished basement. Ultimately, as much as I loved that tank, it was a missed opportunity for the space. I finished that project on a high note and took it down to make room for this five-footer. This tank size is a much better fit.

I already knew I was going to put a bigger tank in this space when I found this truly massive piece of driftwood at my local fish shop. Once I had the wood, the contours of the project started to take shape. For example, I was going to need spot lighting from about 90" off the floor. There will be no lid. There will be the potential for emergent growth and/or a mixed aquatic and terrestrial planting. Many things are still unknown, but they're starting to fall into place. One thing at a time!

First - the name of the tank journal should reflect the absurdity of the wood's proportions. Check.

Next is plumbing.

Then, hardscape.

More (much more) to come.
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Not a bristlenose, but a small species. These max out at 7".

From the beginning of this project I was planning to use an external pump to power the filtration system since it would include a large reactor, heater, and sterilizer. Once I factored out the GPH of the canister's built-in pump it was just down to media volume in the filtration chamber. I didn't really need any more media volume than the FX4 provided. Plus, I already owned an FX4!
Interesting.

Have you measured the GPH at the outlet with your setup? Do you run the pump on the FX4 too, or just the DC pump?


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Cool.

Several years from now, as a 40th birthday present, my wife may grant me permission to get a really nice setup like the 6025.

Did you get it locally or order it from WaterBox?

Colorado Springs is a wasteland when it comes to many things, and anything high end in terms of aquarium supplies is out of the question. There’s a local kid who is making a go of it, basically selling plants and fish in a strip mall on my way to work but everything else is big box.


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EF, did you consider acrylic for the "clear" section of the skimmer?

I have a couple of acrylic skimmers heading my way. Plan on heat-bending 25mm OD/ 21mm ID acrylic tubing and making lily pipes complete with skimmers and adjustable flow for the FX6 I bought for my 75. Basically replicating the GLA glass lily pipe intake w/skimmer, but in 25mm size for a real big canister.
 

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The bobber / floating weir portion of the skimmer is acrylic - it's a piece of an old Jardli skimmer/intake. That piece nested beautifully in schedule 40 3/4" PVC, so that's what I used for the stand pipe.
I meant the piece that you described as “purple”, AKA the stand pipe.

I will likely have extra pieces of acrylic pipe, fittings and skimmers left over when I’m done. Let me know if the purple gets to be too much and I can send you some.


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What kind of evaporation rates do you have on that? 1500 square inches is a lot of surface area in dry CO. How often are you filling up the ATO?

I suppose it depends on your water change regimen, too. You're pretty lightly stocked, still, it appears.
 

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Is the rate of evaporation higher in the winter, when it is likely a bit drier, or in the summer, being a bit warmer and with the A/C running (and pulling moisture out of the house)?

Also, do you run the water level 3-4" below the rim in case fish get a bit frisky? It appears that way in your photographs but I didn't know the reasoning behind it.

I've never run a rimless tank before, thus my questions/concerns about evaporation rates.
 

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If you look at their Clear Pro page, they used to offer a Clear Pro 6025 Peninsula, which was just a 6025 + peninsula style cabinet.

The Peninsula version you linked to has a sump.

You can see the model I'm talking about here, if you scroll about a quarter of the way down the page:

 

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Fluval is one of the few (only?) companies that tries to show you the loss of performance due to head + filter media.

Theoretically, an in-line pump mounted ~2ft higher than the normal FX4/FX6 pump should be far more efficient, correct? That’s ignoring a more efficient design, DC vs AC, etc.

My concern with running too powerful a pump would be potential damage to the foam filter media.


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My rocks are covered in algae. It’s 1/4” tall and looks like fuzz. Snails and other invertebrates love it.

One thing that bothers me about some tanks I see on YouTube is that they are too sterile. They look like they would be incapable of supporting life. Like a handful of ostracods would starve to death. I realize that an aquarium is incapable of truly pulling it off, but I like the idea of an actual ecosystem. I introduced ostracods and pond snails to my tank for exactly that reason. They eat, reproduce, and are food in turn for my fish. The fish poop, which feeds the algae, and the many invertebrates eat that.


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The spring melt, or start of it, kicks up sediment in the reservoirs (and creeks, rivers, etc.).

I do a lot of fly fishing and it’s pretty common for April and May to have the highest turbidity.


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