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Old 01-16-2010, 09:01 PM   #1
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The fish bench

So I've been trying to think of a way to get a tank into my rather small living room and I think I've finally come up with something and I just wanted to get some feedback on it. Basically what I'm thinking is that I build a good solid bench that has enough room inside it to hold a 55 gallon long fish tank (48x13x20) and doubles as seating. As you can see from the picture below the tank would be about 2" off the ground and the entire top of the bench would be padded for seating. The seating portion of the bench would flip up allowing access to the top of the tank for feeding, cleaning, etc. what I'm looking for is advice to see if I'm over looking anything. Also I'm curious how disturbing it would be for fish to be near ground level where they constantly see feet moving around and will undoubtedly be starred at by the cats and dog. And the last question is how much do you think a subwoofer being about a foot from a tank would bother the fish?

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Old 01-16-2010, 09:53 PM   #2
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Wow that's a very interesting and bold thought. I think as far as seeing ppl walking by and floor movement it really depends on the traffic flow in your living room. I don't think it would be any different than having a tank in a high traffic area (ie. a kitchen or large living room) but the concern for me would be the mention of dogs. My dogs (Australian shepards) are nuts and knock in to anything on their level which would def. be the tank in your case. That would be very bad for the fish because it stresses them out each time they have to go through the aftermath of the thrashing. Also something to consider is peoples feet and accidentally hitting the tank with them while sitting down and you'd obviously have to be worried about that with a glass set up. As for the subwoofer, IMO not a good idea. The bass and constant knocking that comes from them would stress the fish out pretty bad. All in all this is only my opinion and common observation. Good luck with it and should you go through with it pictures are def. wanted
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Old 01-17-2010, 12:27 PM   #3
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Fish need to breath too. How is there oxygen getting into the tank? That's murder, man.
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Old 01-17-2010, 01:05 PM   #4
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I like the originality of your idea and it has not been done before probably because it poses some unique challenges such as: oxygen, humidity (water and wood usually add up to moisture and rot). Also, sitting and kicking your feet accidentally on the fish's home is like putting your head underwater in a bathtub and banging on the sides. You may want to go back to the drawing board and look at a way to build up into a shelving unit, get rid of some other furniture, find another room, or maybe a 29g nano tank. I use a 44g high corner tank that literally just takes up about two feet by two feet.
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Old 01-17-2010, 04:29 PM   #5
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Thanks for the feedback, some good stuff to think of.

As far as oxygen goes, the tank isn't going to be sealed completely into the bench. The bench is more like a stand for the tank. Both ends of the bench will be open and the back will also be open. I plan on leaving about 6" of space behind the tank for filters and such. In my mind when the bench seat is lifted up you will be looking down on teh top of a normal aquarium with a glass lid. I figure I'll probably need 4" of space or so between the top of the tank and the bottom of the seat for room for lights. So i don't think oxygen will be a big concern as there should be plenty of airflow around the tank.

I've considered the kicking issue too and it's something I'm trying to work out. The thing is though this bench will likely very rarely be used as a seat it's just overflow seating for when we have too many people over which is like twice a year. For the most part we have a pretty quiet house with just me and the fiance.

The dog is a concern just because her tail tends to bang on things, I think I might have to build a quick mock up and see if it's an issue. I think she's actually tall enough that her tail wouldn't come near the glass part.
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Old 01-17-2010, 04:46 PM   #6
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IMO..

oxygen will be an issue
heat in the summer will be an issue
condensation will be an issue
corrosion will be an issue
salt creep will be everywhere

The subwoofer is the least of the issues you'll deal with...

Sounds like a project and a half.. Be interested to follow along and see how it works out in the long run
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Old 01-17-2010, 04:48 PM   #7
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Well we do have central air so heat shouldn't be a factor and it'll be freshwater so no salt concerns. I just hope i'm describing it correctly because it sounds like there might be an image of building a fish tank into the bench like one of those coffee tables. But it's more like building one of those double stack fish tank stands but instead of there being a 2nd tank on the top it'll be seating and I'll just be setting an off the shelf aquarium into the base.
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Old 01-17-2010, 04:51 PM   #8
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aside from the above mentioned concerns, i have one that i had thought about the minute i saw this thread. if your living room is that small, how are you going to even see the fish?
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Old 01-17-2010, 04:58 PM   #9
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Well the room is 11x16, the tank would be fully visible from the couch
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Old 01-17-2010, 05:14 PM   #10
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Not being saltwater alleviates some of the obstacles. Low level fluorescents might not be a heat issue, air stones help w/ o2, a small fan placed in the back would help w/ condensation..

Ok, I'm on board... The height is a worry.. feet, vacuum, etc.. and the skittishness (is that a word) of the fish w/ the animals, feet, legs, etc....

Go for it
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