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Old 12-19-2003, 03:20 PM   #1
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Tank Move/Upgrade; advice please?

Hi all,

I need advice from someone who's done this before. Right now, I have a 55 gallon with:
1 albino tiger oscar
1 black convict
1 jack dempsey
1 pleco
1 million snails

I am planning to purchase a 120 gallon or larger tank, depending on what will fit the room when I look. I want these guys to get big, and have contemplated getting a silver arrowana as well - that would be later. My question is, how do I move the fish over? Problems I foresee:

1. What if I want to put the new tank where the old one is? These things are heavy!
2. Bio processes... I have a really big mother-of-all canister filters, so I'd be running that and maybe another. What about the gravel? I'd need a lot more weight. If I could move the gravel straight from one tank to the other, it'd probably keep the bacteria alive.
3. What else? Am I missing something?

Thank you for your advice!
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Old 12-19-2003, 03:29 PM   #2
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Get a 20 gallon rubbermaid tub, or something. You know the kind, the big plastic storage tubs. Fill it with tank water, put an airstone in it, catch the fish and move them in.

Drain your tank. If you got another tub, move all the gravel into it. Now you've got an empty tank. Move it out of the way, put new tank in place. Rinse new gravel (If you have say, 55 lbs.. and you want 120lbs total, get 75lbs more) and put it in. Put the old gravel on top. Fill the tank, put your filters back in place, turn your heater on. (It could help to fill the tank with both warm and cold water running, so you don't have to heat it as much).

Your fish should still be fairly good and happy in the tub for now. (On second thought, get a 30 gallon tub). Do NOT put a heater in this tub. It'll melt through the plastic probably. When you feel the new tank is at the right temperature, acclimate your fish to the new water like you're putting the fish in new.

That should save most if not all your biological filtration. Just don't rinse that old gravel or the canister. You probably will want to consider more filtration.. what filter is it specificly?
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Old 12-19-2003, 03:47 PM   #3
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Also only rinse your filter with aquarium water and don't forget to equalize the temperature before putting your fish back in
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Old 12-19-2003, 03:55 PM   #4
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The tub idea is good... I'm thinking that the new tank will go across the room from the existing, so that it won't be in as much of a traffic area. I'm looking at 125's, but would really like a 220!

Gravel - I think I have about 90 lbs in the 55 gallon. I know that's a lot, but I like hills and stuff! I'll have to get more big rocks, too.

Here's the plan If I can do a "cross room" move:
1. I'll rinse the new gravel and fill the new tank about half way.
2. Move the fish out of old tank, into rubbermaid tub.
3. Move as much gravel as possible from old tank to new with a bucket or something.
4. Top off the new tank and equalize temperature.
5. Introduce the fishies to their new home.

Remaining questions:
1. Chlorine in the water. That's too much water to have sitting in buckets in the house. What do you think of these products to remove chlorine? Stress coat claims that it does that...
2. My current filter is a Magnum 350. I wonder how much tank that'll handle? Is that 350 gallons/hour? How many times should I turn over the aquarium water per hour?

Thanks again for the help!
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Old 12-19-2003, 04:21 PM   #5
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Don't use Stress Coat. It contains irriatants to make fish produce more slime coating. I'd suggest Ammo-Lock (Or Ammo-lock 2? I still don't know the real difference between the two. The labels seem to be the same) or Bio-Safe (Marineland's version).

I would suggest adding at least one Emperor 400, maybe two. That gives you 800 gph. With the Magnum 350, that should do very nicely on a 125 gallon, with a fair amount of surface current/agitation. Maybe throw in a powerhead or two. I don't know, my largest tank is 90, and does fine with just two 400s.
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Old 12-19-2003, 05:12 PM   #6
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Sounds good. Thanks for the advice!

Now I just need to find and acquire the tank!
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Old 12-20-2003, 07:03 AM   #7
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Thaiboxer~

I found my 125gal tank at "petsmart" on Midway.
It was this time last year when hubby and I were looking. There was a sales associate that worked there...Sarah, I believe her name was.
The tank was like $300 (tank only) and I had asked if they were having any before christmas sales. She said, come back next Tuesday and I'll give you one of my 30% off employee coupons. OMG~ really I said. She looked at me and said yep.
So the following tuesday we drove back, got our tank and a large piece of driftwood, and saved $100!!
Merry Christmas.....
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Old 12-21-2003, 12:28 PM   #8
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Nice! I'm going to keep my eyes peeled, and see what kind of deal pops up. I really want a bigger tank now!
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Old 12-21-2003, 12:56 PM   #9
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I just went through something similar. You've got time so you could plan this out ideally. Here's what I'd do.

Buy a couple of sponge filters and let them work in your 55 for at least two weeks before the move.
Add the new gravel (well rinsed) to the new tank, and fill half way with tap water.
Do a real good gravel vac on the 55 the day before you move the fish, changing about 50% of the water in the process.
Get the temp in the new tank to match the 55 and you're ready to go.

The day you move the fish.
Place those sponge filters in your new tank.
Scoop out as much gravel from the 55 and add to the new tank.
Net the fish and put them right in the new tank.
Use the water from the 55 to top off your new one, and it's done.

I agree with Ferret. 1 magnum 350 can't handle a 125 gal. But you've got a lot of options.
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Old 12-21-2003, 10:30 PM   #10
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Everything sounds good - I'm sure I'll need more filtration, I'd like to stay with cannisters if possible so I'll research them and maybe for convenience buy another 350 and see how that goes.

I will make sure to plan it well when I'm ready to go - I can't wait to move on this now!

Thanks for all the help!
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