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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,

I have a 55 which I plan on placing 5 bulkheads in the rear glass panel.
2 inlets near the top (opposite sides),
2 outlets near the bottom (opposite sides),
and one overflow in the top middle.

All holes will be for 1/2" ID bulkheads. I'm not sure what the hole diameter is yet.

The inlets and returns will be for 2 Eheim canister filters.
While the overflow will be essentially a drain for a continuous drip water change system.

My question is,
Is this too many holes to maintain the strength of the back wall on the tank?
and what is the lowest height i should attempt to drill for the lower holes?

Thanks in advance
 

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It's not too many holes, but you first need to make sure that your 55 gal tank is not made of tempered glass. Many 55 gal tanks are made of tempered glass and will break in to many pieces if you try to drill it.

You will need about a 1 1/8" hole to install a bulkhead fitting, depending upon the bulkhead bring used.

Typically you want to keep the holes away from the edges of the glass. Usually this distance is about double the diameter of the hole being drilled. For example, if you need to drill a 1 inch hole, it should be about 2 inches from the edge of the glass.

You can drill the holes more or less where you want, but if you place them low, and you need to maintain or replace the fitting, you will need to drain the tank until it is below the level of the bulkhead being worked on.

You will also need to install valves so you can remove the canister filter for cleaning and service.

You will also need quite a bit of space behind the tank so you can install the rest of the pipe or hose you'll need.

As you can see this is quite a bit of work to set up and install, and it's a major job, drain the tank and drill again, if you want to change anything.

Be sure this is exactly what you want.
 

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Is this some random system you designed? have you looked at the beananimal etc?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you for the suggestions

It just a standard overflow, but what i really wanted was to get rid of all the tubes going over the lip of the tank for the pumps. I don't particularly want to use a sump.

So 4 holes for a filter, an in and out on each side of the rear panel, and one hole in the middle to act as an overflow drain seems like a good system to me, and also allows me to expan directly to 2 pumps should i choose to do so.


I had not looked at the beananimal, but I have indirectly seen pictures of it. Thank you for sharing.
 

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Almost all 55 gallon tanks are tempered. You will not be able to drill that tank. 55 is a horrible footprint for a tank. Anything is better - 40b, 75, etc. Do yourself a favor and throw it out. Or a better idea, go ahead and drill it so you have first hand experience with what happens when you drill tempered glass!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
You know,
I was worried about the tempered glass. So i put on my physics hat, bought a polarizer and verified that the side walls arn't tempered; just the bottom.
I have been doing just fine with my 29 gallon planted tank for at least 6 years, the 55 is a little bit taller and a foot longer and wont stick out from the wall beyond the little wall separating my rooms.
So for me, it will work just fine.
 
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