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Old 01-13-2003, 02:45 PM   #1
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New House Project.. built in Aquarium

Hi all,

I'm drawing up plans for a new house.. and, after some serious thought, I've decided to include a built in Aquarium. The dimensions for the "show area" are 8 feet long, 4 feet wide and 3 feet high. Needless to say.. it's huge! This would be a 718 gallon aquarium, weighing in at 6100 lbs if filled with water only. What consideration for construction and set up should I thinkabout in this planning stage? These are the things I've thought of so far:

1) structural integerity
2) I've included in my plans a closet space that allows access to the tank for maintenance
3) Water changes/plumbing... I would plumb a resevoir system in the basement for mixing and injecting new water into the tank.

What else should I be thinking of right now?

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Old 01-13-2003, 03:00 PM   #2
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scuba gear! Or at lest some hip waders........ I'm so jealous!

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Old 01-13-2003, 03:08 PM   #3
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Well that sounds excellent. What new house should NOT have a built in aquairum? They should be standard on all new construction.

Seriously I think you should check out www.mr4000.com and see what he did.

I would suspect you would want this on a concret floor with concret walls.

This is well beyond my rudimentary structional engeniring.
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Old 01-13-2003, 03:15 PM   #4
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Being that my tank is about 15X smaller than yours I had problems when I built my tank wall and found out that it was too small. Since it sounds like space is abundant for you here is what I would do if I could.

1. If I could do it over I would of given myself more top tank clearance. I only left myself 8" and should have had about 14" - 18". Now I have to squeeze new lighting in there.

2. Also since I don't have a sump my Protein skimmer barely fit and needed adjusted. I would definitely build a compartment below just for the sump area and even a chemicals and tools area. A utility sink would be very accessible. Don't forget about a Quarantine tank!

3. I didn't expect to make much mess with water, but during changes and maintenance I spilt water onto the base which is painted drywall. I should of designed a more waterproof area or some type of drainage system.

4. I would of made more arrangements for better power supply. I would of installed a seperate breaker just for my tank wiring. Only because I have 3 tanks on this wall.

5. We made everything structurally sound using wood for my tanks. If I were you I would look into something more stable and not likely to settle or move. Probably some form with concrete blocks, boarded, formed and then finished. Maybe even a slab. Not sure. That's alot of weight. Definitly would consult with a trusted and experienced LFS.

6. If there is going to be a wall above I might design some kind of recessed compartment just for my lighting. I would make it fire proof safe and accomodate some cooling fans in there to and give myself some access from the back and top.

Good luck, Sounds like an awesome project. You can never waste time doing research!
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Old 01-13-2003, 03:18 PM   #5
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With that much water I would consider some room de-humidification. Could be an issue with that much water available.
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Old 01-13-2003, 06:05 PM   #6
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And thinking along the lines of worst case scenario, I believe a sump pump and floor drain would be in order... 718 gallons vs a 10 gallon shop vac in the event something TERRIBLE occurs is not a fair fight.. Ya know?
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Old 01-13-2003, 08:39 PM   #7
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in house tank

Tank sitting on concrete footers.
Access room walls covered with moisture resistant material.
Floor drain.
Access room should be vented outside or have a large dehumidifier running. Read about a guy who had a very large tank in his basement. It rotted the floor joists out and he ended up having to get rid of it. I would have the mixing tank in the basement either covered or have a demumidifier running down there as well. Sounds like a great idea though. I have a closet that shares a wall with the hall here. I'd like to put a tank in there and have it visible from the hall someday.
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