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Author Topic: Goldfish cube tank plans  (Read 1487 times)
Dragonii
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Goldfish cube tank plans
« on: September 18, 2011, 05:38:19 PM »

As some of you know I have several tanks but I do not at the moment have any goldfish. The reason I joined this forum is because I have been planning on doing a goldfish tank build.  I am not the type to just get a tank and set it up. I did that for many years but I now plan and put a lot of fore thought into my builds.

The idea for a goldfish tank started when my girlfriend saw a Fluval Chi with some fancies at the lfs. She liked it but I had to informed her that a Chi was too small for that. So I started thinking, "what can I build that will be big enough for goldies, preserve the look and feel of the Chi and fit in our small condo?"

Here's the answer...
60 gallon Marineland cube with a custom built stand, light and filtration system.
tank measures 24"x24"x24"
[image]

The tank will be filtered by a 500 gph canister filter. water will pass through the gravel and into a chamber behind a 6" wide wall in the center of the back of the tank. After being passed through the canister it will return back to the tank in another chamber behind the insert. The water will travel up the chamber passing bio balls with air injected through bubble stones (reverse wet/dry) and then flow gently out the top of the chamber to the sides. This will allow for plenty of bacterial growth and oxygenate the water without causing a strong current or too much disturbance to the surface of the water. Bubbles will not be visible as they will be behind the acrylic wall (I'm thinking about white).
The gravel on the bottom will be larger sized black pebbles to allow fish waste to pass through them and into the filter. It will also give a "Zen" feel to the tank. In the center of the tank rising out of the gravel will be a square pot with a water lily planted in it.
[image]

The top of the tank will be open, it will have an acrylic rim of about two inches that goes around the top of the tank, but otherwise open. Light will be provided by a high output LED spotlight hanging over the tank. The goal is for the lily to grow up and out of the tank where it will flower.
[image]

The tank will rest on a custom made stand. The stand will line up perfectly with the edge of the bottom rim, no overhang or over lapping. The sides of the stand will be smooth and flat, no fancy trim. Door will close smoothly with the facing and be barely noticeable. Stand will be varnished in black with a semi gloss finish and have a 2" strip of frosted glass running around it.
[image]


Step one... buy the tank. lol
Be warned, my cichlid tank took me a year to set up. But it was well worth it.
« Last Edit: September 19, 2011, 08:57:17 AM by Dragonii » Logged
Nossie
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #1 on: September 19, 2011, 02:40:12 AM »

That sounds really good! Cheesy So.. what was the question? (I just woke up, sorry! D: )
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #2 on: September 19, 2011, 07:52:46 AM »

No particular question really. Just sharing and open to input.


You guys don't discuss your builds as you do them? It's a rather common thing to do on aquarium forums. You never know when someone might catch something that you forgot or they may add something that you didn't think of.
« Last Edit: September 19, 2011, 08:56:45 AM by Dragonii » Logged
Nossie
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2011, 09:33:53 AM »

I got a sort of "custom" built tank here, you can order them in various sizes and get really good bargains on the packages Smiley (lights, bulbs, gravel + discount for a month in the shop.)

I don't think I'll ever build my own tank, honestly, I feel like I need a lot more experience with that before I'd do something. Otherwise it'd be one **** of a waste of money, material and time should the thing end up leaking D:

Please upload photos of it when you start building! It'd be interesting to follow Smiley
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #4 on: September 19, 2011, 10:10:07 AM »

Well, on this one the tank will be purchased pre-built. It is a Marineland tank.
I am ordering some glass today for a 9x9x9 3 gallon nano cube that I will be building, but I wouldn't even think of trying to do a 60 gallon cube. That is just too much pressure to trust my skills (or lack there of) with.

The stand, filter insert, pot, acrylic rim and so on will have to be all custom made.

I wanted to go with a rimless tank originally but they cost twice what this tank will cost, and this tank is already overpriced and hard to find.
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Skwishee
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2011, 02:55:24 PM »

Wow I had no idea you could build tanks from scratch, that's awesome!
I'm not so good at DIY so I'd probably be useless at something like this XD

I didn't realise you could custom make so many things, I've heard of people making their own stands, but tanks, rims, filter inserts Shocked

Amazing, I would love to see how you put it all together Cheesy
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #6 on: September 19, 2011, 05:31:31 PM »

I don't trust myself to build the tank itself, but the stand is no problem. We have an acrylic fabrication shop nearby that I will contract to make the rim/lid and insert. He cut the inserts for my big tank that hide the filter intakes and heaters.
If you look at the back corners you will see black walls on each side of the tank.
[image]

This is what is behind them.
[image]


End result is that all the pipes and heaters are hidden.

I'll make sure to post pictures on the 3 gallon nano in the betta section when I get it done. I picked up the glass for it today.  Smiley
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Nossie
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #7 on: September 20, 2011, 01:58:11 AM »

Nice!!:) I heard that some people take cork wood that they weigh down with rocks or something so that it will stay vertical to cover filters and heaters... I was thinking about using that myself but didn't get to, mostly because it might be in the way when I want to clean the filter (and I'd need one GIANT chunk...)
But it looks really good with those acrylic walls there... Smiley
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #8 on: September 20, 2011, 12:38:10 PM »

I've never used cork, but I have seen it done.

I also had a tank once with a big drop in background made out a hard resin. It looked like rocks and tree roots. Hid all the stuff behind it. It was nice.

There is plenty of DIY background info out there. Very time consuming to do it but very nice when it's done.
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Nossie
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #9 on: September 21, 2011, 02:37:05 AM »

I wouldn't mind making one for my tank, but I feel like the space would be limited then (and I've got a few things in there that use a whole lot of space...), maybe for another tank Smiley
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #10 on: September 21, 2011, 08:24:37 AM »

Yeah, that's why I decided against it for my 150.
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #11 on: September 26, 2011, 12:31:46 PM »

So after my success building the 3 gallon cube my buddies in the local aquarium club are trying to convince me to build the 60 cube from scratch.  Roll Eyes
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #12 on: September 27, 2011, 10:52:11 AM »

Looks like building it from scratch won't be needed. A buddy emailed me last night offering me his 60 gallon cube for $75.  Wink
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Nossie
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #13 on: September 27, 2011, 12:40:37 PM »

AWESOME! Cheesy So you'll be keepin' fancies in it? Smiley What varieties are you planning on?
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #14 on: September 27, 2011, 04:06:40 PM »

Yep, fancies. Girlfriend doesn't like the exposed brain look of orandas so I guess it will be more ryukin or regular veiltails. Once the tank is set up we will go pick out fish. We have an actual Ornamental Pond Fish farm about an hours drive from our home and we plan to go there to pick out our fish. They have more goldfish than you could imagine. Our aquarium club has meetings there sometimes.
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As for anything other than goldfish... maybe a Dojo at some point or a bristlenose pleco or a couple of snails... not sure.

I have always wanted a long fin albino bristle nose and it would a good place to have one.
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Skwishee
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #15 on: September 28, 2011, 03:44:53 AM »

Aww wow, thats awesome  Cheesy

I wish they had aquarium clubs around here! I've certainly not come across any so far!
Would love to see the tank when you're finished with it Smiley

The bristlenose sounds fab as well!
I'm pretty sure my dad had a white coloured one (which I assume was albino?) once when I was a kid  Grin
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Nossie
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #16 on: September 28, 2011, 04:17:07 AM »

We have albino cory cats in our community tank Smiley And I have seen a few bristlenoses with the same type of color too, very nice indeed Smiley I think having light fish would work nicely with a darker colored gravel... or how were you planning to decorate it? Smiley

Strange that your girlfriend is so intolerant to them somehow Wink Most of my relatives that didn't see my orandas said the same, but once they actually saw them and how lovely they were acting, they were sold! Grin Everyone has different taste of course Smiley

I wish I could go to that fish farm too! D8
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #17 on: September 28, 2011, 09:48:24 AM »

Nossie, you would love the place. It used to be an old softshell crab farm, not sure if you are familiar with that. The people that own it now bought it and started raising goldfish. They have these tubs that are about 40 feet long, two feet deep and four feet wide, and they are full of goldfish. Like if you wanted a red top Oranda, one tub would be nothing but Red Top Orandas. They have probably 30 of these tubs. Then they have ponds made of cinder block that are about 3 feet deep for the bigger fish and breeding. It is a really cool place. I'll have to take pictures when we go.

Decorations are going to be simple. I plan to put a square pot right in the center of the tank and plant a lily in it. The goal is for the lily to grow up and out of the tank as it will have no lid.
[image]

So far that's about all that is planned to go in it. The goal is to kind of replicate cutting a slice out of a pond and putting it on display.

I think I may get the tank this weekend and start working on it. I want to strip out the old seals and pull the nasty wood grain rim off it. I will then Eurobrace the tank bottom and top. (Still need to call the glass place about that) Then I have to build the stand.

If the lily fails, the back up plan is to use surface plants such as Water hyacinth and let the roots hang into the tank.
[image]


Both of these plants actually grow wild around here. We live close to a lot of swampland.

In fact, I plan to someday have a big tank of wild caught fish fish from here.
We have some beautiful native fish here.
[image]

[image]

And you can't forget our fabulous mudbugs...
[image]
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Nossie
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #18 on: September 28, 2011, 10:13:33 AM »

That all sounds amazing!! Shocked
I'd love a little big redcap oranda, they looked so lovely on those pictures I looked at at their homepage Smiley

It'll be so exciting the see the final setup! Cheesy
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Skwishee
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #19 on: September 30, 2011, 05:02:09 AM »

The lily idea is lovely! I never thought about having plants floating on the top!
It must be incredible at that fish farm! Some of those fish are huge! Bigger than 17", had no idea Koi were so massive! If they breed the fish, do you ever get to see the fry their looking after? Or is that all 'behind the scenes' stuff?

I found a company around here that does bespoke aquariums/cabinets and thought of you and you're goldfish cube ^_^

One day when I have a place of my own (not rented) I would love to build a giant fish pond Cheesy
I remember helping my parents build ponds for our frogs back home and it was so much fun! I imagine building aquariums and cabinets must be just as fun, seeing something take shape like that in front of your eyes Smiley
« Last Edit: September 30, 2011, 05:05:06 AM by Skwishee » Logged
fantailer
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #20 on: September 30, 2011, 05:10:32 AM »

Mudbugs sweet!!
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #21 on: September 30, 2011, 10:07:35 AM »

The last time I was there they had a koi that was like 2 feet long. Huge fish!

They do have breeding ponds but they are dark and hard to see anything in them. The display ponds are shallow and out where you can see the fish.

I looked up Bespoke Aquariums, very nice. Have you ever seen ADA tanks? Amazing tanks. They are known for open top rimless glass tanks.

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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #22 on: October 01, 2011, 09:41:24 PM »

Well.... here we go. Step one taken care of.
[image]
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Nossie
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #23 on: October 02, 2011, 07:29:38 AM »

Doesn't the tank look pretty high? I imagine it as a little bit more shallow cube tank Smiley
I guess it'll look bigger later with everything in place though! Cheesy
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #24 on: October 02, 2011, 10:45:16 AM »

It's actually a perfect cube. It measures 2'x2'x2'. The angle, stand and trim make it look like it is taller than wide. Total volume is 60 gallons (227.12 Litres)
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Nossie
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #25 on: October 02, 2011, 01:37:28 PM »

Nice! Smiley I bet it'll be so beautiful once it's filled with plants and fish... Smiley
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Skwishee
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #26 on: October 03, 2011, 02:56:03 PM »

Yay Cheesy I'm looking forward to seeing how you decorate it all!
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Dragonii
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #27 on: October 23, 2011, 12:05:32 PM »

Well the tank has very bad hard water stains. I have tried all sorts of things to clean the glass, no success. Angry

Last resort, I bought a gallon of muriatic acid. If that don't work, nothing will.  Wink
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Nossie
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #28 on: October 23, 2011, 01:15:23 PM »

Good luck with that... Wink They're really hard to get off sometimes.. D:
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Ron H
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Re: Goldfish cube tank plans
« Reply #29 on: October 27, 2011, 04:49:15 AM »

Hi Dragonii, how did you go with the hard water stains, did the muriatic acid work? cheers
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