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Old 11-25-2007, 01:22 PM   #1
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Cascading Beta Tanks

So I've had a marine tank setup for about 4 years or so but grad school is making it mighty difficult to deal with. I'm unfortunately taking it down, possibly selling it, but I want to put up a nice little Beta setup in it's stead. (What can I say? I'm still hooked.) Anyway, what I'd really like to do is have a set of 4 1 gallon-ish cubes set up side by side, each one about 2" higher than the other in a step-like formation. Ideally I'd want a filter at the top tank and an intake in the bottom one and for the water to cascade waterfall-style from tank to tank. Also, I think they would be planted and I'd like to keep a Beta in each section.

Does this sound possible? This all works in theory in my head, but has anyone tried something like this?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.



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Old 11-25-2007, 01:26 PM   #2
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It would work. The only suggestion I have is to make it out of acrylic.

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Old 11-25-2007, 09:17 PM   #3
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Sounds like it would work but i think you might get some "splashing" on the floor but im not sure exactly how you have it planned out. Sounds like a cool idea though! Dont forget to post pics if you do it!
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Old 11-26-2007, 06:37 PM   #4
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I don't see this working out too well, but I may be thinking only one way.

What kind of filter would you use? It would have to be pretty low on the flow to make sure you don't get a lot of splashing. The other issue I see is with the type of filter. What kind of filter were you thinking of using? Standard hang on backs I'm imagining not being able to pump high enough without the huge flow. Plus the intake would be right under the output.

Maybe I need to see a drawing or draw one myself to understand this all.

You might be better off with a single gallon above a 10 gallon, split 4-ways. Then everything would be right under the filter return to create a fountain effect.
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Old 11-27-2007, 12:24 AM   #5
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The Big Al's LFS uses something similar down here in FL for their plant display. Granted their tank is probably about 200 gallons broken up into about 10 sections. Five to a side cascading down from tank to tank, dropping a few inches per tank. I've seen a circular version in other stores that uses spokes radiating out from the center to divide the sections.

Pretty much the only trick is that the outer tank walls need to be about an inch taller than the dividers between the tanks. Each divider about an inch or two lower than the one above it. The bottoms of all the ones I've seen have all been flat, so each tank is a little smaller than the one above it. You might be able to stair step the bottoms too, but it'd get trickier real quick. The main problem with doing the bottom would be making a stand that would support the whole thing evenly without putting stress on the joins.
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:21 PM   #6
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It would work... Maybe use a Tom's Rapids mini canister filter? Seems about right... I would use lids on all tanks since those Bettas WILL see each other and jump in to battle their neighbor...

You may get by with a small pump/powerhead for the tank-to-tank flow with maybe just a little in-tank filter in one tank for chemical filtration since they will all share the same water... You could hide it behind plants?

Get ready for frequent water top offs... You are gonna cause a lot of evap with four cascades going...
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Old 11-30-2007, 12:25 PM   #7
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The betta's seeing each other would be something to deal with. You could use black acrylic or just hit some clear stuff with sand paper to fix that though.
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Old 01-03-2008, 05:26 PM   #8
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I can see it working, you may need experiment with the water falling though to avoid it getting out on the floor. Although an acrylic lid with a strategically cut hole in the top should work. You may want to design the stand with a plastic bottom and a "rain gutter" feature to catch splash off and dump it back in the bottom tank. If you design the stairs right, the bettas will likely not be able to see each other over the corner of the previous stair. Finally you want to be very careful about how much water is allowed to spill over the falls. If too much goes over, the filter will not be able to pump it out of the bottom tank fast enough to prevent it from overflowing.

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