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Old 03-17-2015, 12:39 AM   #1
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How to Move a Tank?

So, I'll be moving about 2 hours south by the beginning of June. 😓

How in the h$&@ do I move my 36g bowfront?! Do I have to empty it of every single piece of flora and fauna? Can water be left in it at all? Even if we get it light enough to be carried by two people, will the weight of 50lbs of eco-complete & sand cause it to crack?

Help me! I've never moved a tank this big before...


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Old 03-17-2015, 12:49 AM   #2
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Get as much out as you can. Realistically, you may not be able to get everything out. I have moved tanks across town with a few inches of water and all their decor and substrate without trouble. Preferably though, you want as much out as you can. The lighter it is, the easier it is to carry and the less the glass will press down on your fingers tips causing stress.
Get all the fish out. All the jiggling that happens during travel will kick up all sorts of debris from your substrate that it is not healthy for your fish to be breathing in. From experience, I had some casualties when I left in some fish. I have not lost any when I took them all out and transported them in coolers. Some people suggest air stones. I never bothered with that, not even when I took fish halfway across the country. Your choice though.
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Old 03-17-2015, 01:45 AM   #3
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My biggest concern is the base glass cracking from uneven weight distribution (being carried rather than sitting on a flat surface). Can anyone assuage my fears on that? Or am I being rational...?


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Old 03-17-2015, 01:53 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeeLee2013 View Post
My biggest concern is the base glass cracking from uneven weight distribution (being carried rather than sitting on a flat surface). Can anyone assuage my fears on that? Or am I being rational...?


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Like I said, get as much out as you can. Beyond that, it should be fine. Lots of people have moved lots of tanks without them cracking. You will probably be fine with your substrate still in there. I always have been. But, you are technically the safest if you remove as much as you can. Up to you.
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Old 03-19-2015, 05:43 AM   #5
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I have moved my tanks 4 times in the last 11 years and I always follow the same routine. (I have 4 tanks, a 125 gallon, 40 gallon, 33 gallon, and 10) I empty everything out of the tanks. All it takes is one bump and something hits your glass wrong and the extra weight can crack it. As it is, if you expect to keep your tank's cycle, you'll have to move the water, fish, decor, and substrate in buckets full of tank water...so you may as well empty it all. It's such a hassle, but if hate to have an accident and have to buy a new tank after a long move....


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Old 03-19-2015, 03:46 PM   #6
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Tanks are a lot tougher than you would think. I have moved mine twice, only short distances though. Just remove fish and transport them in buckets. Drain water down to the lowest level you can. You can cut a piece of three quarter plywood just bigger than tank base and slide the tank onto this and carry it. It keeps the pressure spread across the bottom of tank and reduces the change of torsion. Carrying it by the bottom of the tank has caused no problems with my 29 gallon tank but sitting on a soft car seat might cause some twisting if you hit bumps. The plywood gives it a more even surface and limits twisting or bowing.
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Old 03-19-2015, 04:28 PM   #7
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Tanks are a lot tougher than you would think. I have moved mine twice, only short distances though. Just remove fish and transport them in buckets. Drain water down to the lowest level you can. You can cut a piece of three quarter plywood just bigger than tank base and slide the tank onto this and carry it. It keeps the pressure spread across the bottom of tank and reduces the change of torsion. Carrying it by the bottom of the tank has caused no problems with my 29 gallon tank but sitting on a soft car seat might cause some twisting if you hit bumps. The plywood gives it a more even surface and limits twisting or bowing.
+1 keeping the tank flat is the key - so long as you carry it from the bottom and have sufficient support on the ends, carrying it won't be an issue. Driving with it can be - set it on a flat surface and make sure it can not slide around, and be careful about hitting bumps.
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Old 03-19-2015, 06:18 PM   #8
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Here's what I would/will do if/when I move.
Remove all fauna into a cooler with battery powered airstone and bio media
Remove the Hardscape and infrastructure
Drain tank water to substrate
Cover tank in saran wrap and blue tape seal.
Get a piece of 1/2" plywood to.place under tank if it's riding shotgun..
Buckle tank up and drive precisely 9 miles over the speed limit to destination.
Upon arrival indulge in an adult beverage and set the tank back up.
Forget the Hardscape, get the filters going. Temp up and fish back in, aesthetics are last in my move..
I'd also do everything involved in the move first, including tank stand so it's the only.thing on your plate when the time comes.
I've put much thought into this as I have 4 tanks in my 3rd floor apt. and no lease at the moment

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Old 03-20-2015, 04:08 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brookster123 View Post
Here's what I would/will do if/when I move.
Remove all fauna into a cooler with battery powered airstone and bio media
Remove the Hardscape and infrastructure
Drain tank water to substrate
Cover tank in saran wrap and blue tape seal.
Get a piece of 1/2" plywood to.place under tank if it's riding shotgun..
Buckle tank up and drive precisely 9 miles over the speed limit to destination.
Upon arrival indulge in an adult beverage and set the tank back up.
Forget the Hardscape, get the filters going. Temp up and fish back in, aesthetics are last in my move..
I'd also do everything involved in the move first, including tank stand so it's the only.thing on your plate when the time comes.
I've put much thought into this as I have 4 tanks in my 3rd floor apt. and no lease at the moment

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My concern about the fauna is the fact that I have, at any given time, a plethora of fry 😓
I loathe the idea of having to catch. Every. Single. One.


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Old 03-20-2015, 04:14 PM   #10
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Don't you just use a siphon to suck the fry into a bucket anyways? Seems like it'll be killing two birds with one stone.


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Old 03-20-2015, 04:35 PM   #11
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Don't you just use a siphon to suck the fry into a bucket anyways? Seems like it'll be killing two birds with one stone.


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I've done this with apisto fry, worked fine, just use a smaller diameter tubing so the suction is not outrageous.

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Old 03-20-2015, 08:39 PM   #12
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Old 03-20-2015, 08:42 PM   #13
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I'm part of a genus!!!!

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Old 03-22-2015, 12:08 AM   #14
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So I guess my hilly hardscape is pretty much going to become a flat-scape, huh? Darn vibrations... 😖


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Old 03-22-2015, 12:39 AM   #15
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How to Move a Tank?

The part that's hardest for me is catching the fish (I chose to keep a large number of tiny fish). Taking out all the decor and draining most of the water helps with that.

I built a 29 just under a year ago and have moved it twice. Once fish in buckets, once in an ice chest. They stayed in the ice chest for 5 hours with a bunch of plants and did just fine. I prefer api Stress Coat as a dechlorinator for times like this, since it has aloe not artificial polymer slime coat stuff.

I did substrate first, then root tabs, then plants, then more substrate, then fish and filter.

Then I found out the outlet I plugged the heater into was activated by a light switch my child turned off ...

It's been 5 days since I moved and everyone is still alive.

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Old 03-22-2015, 02:11 AM   #16
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Very good question Dee and now I have some great insight should I encounter a move.
Only 1 adult beverage Brookster123?
You've never seen this ole boy move before...haha
But some great advice given by all to be remembered.
Good luck Dee!


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