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Old 01-16-2004, 12:54 PM   #1
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A big tank instead

Moved by corvus to DIY, not really a pond issue.

I'm not really going to build a pond. Just a pretty big tank instead. Probably about 400-600 gal in my basement for african rift lake cichlids.
Right now they are in my 55 and are juveniles. Eventually they will outgrow this tank and I also would like to add several more fish to the group.

My questions are more about filtration hardware for the most part. I was wondering my options were for a tank this size.

I won't be building this tank for about a year, so I figure now is the time to start researching the subject.

Thanks[/i]
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Old 01-16-2004, 01:25 PM   #2
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Then you will probably want to post in either the freshwater or saltwater forums, I know alot about ponds, but nothing about cichlids. I would recommend posting there.
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Old 01-16-2004, 01:46 PM   #3
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As a freshie keeping cichlids (Africans).. It might help to compare cichlids to koi, but averaging 5 to 10 inches and maybe 2/3rds as much waste. Depending on species. They're a fairly messy fish, but not on the level of koi or goldfish.
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Old 01-16-2004, 04:24 PM   #4
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My questions aren't about building the tank itself, I was just wondering what type of filtration would be used on a tank that size.
It's not like I could use a HOB filter on it. And somehow I don't think that 6 Fluval 404's are what I want either.
I figured that the pond people would be able to direct me to the larger volume filtration/pump systems.
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Old 01-16-2004, 04:30 PM   #5
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you might consider building your own filtration system. i've seen it done out of acrylic, but i have no need for something that large, so i haven't looked into it much. i think you'd need a couple good pumps and a large box with a few chambers for mechanical, chemical, and biological filtration. on a small scale, that's how i've seen it done and i believe it should be the same for a huge tank like that. the biggest issue is getting a pump large enough to move 2000 - 3000 gph...that's beyond my knowledge at this point.
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Old 01-16-2004, 05:20 PM   #6
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Okay, being a pond guy, I can definetly help you on this. I can direct you as far as what types of pumps and filters are good for Koi, and since they produce more waste than Cichlids, I think we can take care of ya What size tank?
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Old 01-16-2004, 05:35 PM   #7
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Sorry, missed the 400-600 gallon tank at the wayyyy beginning... lol


So anyways, when a customer would come in with something like that, I would tell them one phrase to keep in mind. More is better. This is not always true with alot of pond things, but that size, with fish who produce almost as much waste as Koi, I would recommend a 1200 gallon per hour pump, double the tank size in GPH. If you want more, sump pumps will be your best bet.What type of tank are you going to use? Is it going to be want to be viewable and aesthetically pleasing? If so, Sump systems will be your best bet, and for that, consult the freshwater forum. I can help with things that can be disguised by plants, as most pumps can be concealed by pond plants, but in an aquarium, its tough to do without grinding the plants to shreds. However, either way, for filtration for that much water, I would highly recommend the Cyprio Bioforce System with UVC. I use them for all of my customers, and they reduce maintenance, algae, and among other things, parasites. But let me know. We can go from there.
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Old 01-19-2004, 03:47 PM   #8
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I'm still in the planning stages at this point. I won't actually have a need for about a year to a year and a half.

Hard to explain what I am thinking, but...

At this point I am considering building the tank (acrylic) with another structure/frame that fits over top of it. Kind of like a mask...

Picture this...

A 500 gal acrylic aquarium on a 1 foot high stand. Overtop of this fits a frame with a ledge that does not actually touch the aquarium at all and can support itself and much more. It will have 3 sides that go from ledge to floor but will leave the front open. The ledge will most likely be wood about a foot wide and be able to support an ample amount of weight. I suppose it is best to describe it as a small above ground pool with a cut-a-way view.

Maybe a waterfall on one side for aeration. Not sure what to do for lighting at this point.

Like I said though, this is at least a year away from now and I have plenty of time for new ideas, plans, and research. This is just my thoughts at this point.

Thanks for your offer to help.
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Old 01-19-2004, 04:16 PM   #9
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get in touch with this guy:

http://www.aquariumadvice.com/viewtopic.php?t=14838

looks like he's done exactly what you are describing.
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Old 01-21-2004, 12:43 PM   #10
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here are 2 pictures describing what I'd like to do.
(done with "paint", while at work, so don't laugh...)

the first is simply the tank, the second is the tank with the border/ledge
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