how to convert a standard fish tank to a marine tank (3ft tank build)

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sticky how to convert a standard fish tank to a marine tank (3ft tank build)

Post  phantom on Sun Jan 02, 2011 10:39 am

so now I am going to upgrade my living room nano to a 3ft tank I though it would be worth
covering each step of the upgrade as its done. Very Happy


Last edited by phantom on Fri Jan 07, 2011 1:37 pm; edited 2 times in total
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sticky drilling holes for the sump

Post  phantom on Sun Jan 02, 2011 11:00 am

so step one...... drilling the holes

firstly you need to get the drill bit, the ones that we use can be found at
all B&Q shops.They are a diamond dust hole saw usually priced around £10



for drilling them the best method we found was using a thinner bit of glass and drilling the two
holes in this.This will then be used as a guide for drilling the holes into the tank.



We then tape the guide into position on the bottom of the tank and get drilling.
when drilling the holes dont put a lot of pressure on the drill or it can break the glass.
You are nearly letting the weight of the drill do the work for you.It is also good
to have someone give you a hand as you need plenty of water poured around the drill
bit to keep it and the glass cool.
so a sore back later you should have your holes drilled lol.
Clean the holes well, apply silicone to the tank connectors
and fit them in place like so




Your LFS should have the silicone you need,dont buy normal silicone as it has
additives that are a big no no for your tank.
This is the stuff we use



so now let the silicone dry and kick back with a coffee and some brownies after all your hard work Cool






next we will cover the wier build..............
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sticky Re: how to convert a standard fish tank to a marine tank (3ft tank build)

Post  reefkeepersni on Mon Jan 03, 2011 8:45 am

were getting there mate
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sticky building a tank weir

Post  phantom on Mon Jan 03, 2011 12:01 pm

next step as promised....building your tank weir,

At this stage you can just measure up the glass needed and get it cut...
but we on the other hand have a few spare tanks lying about(from other projects)
so we thought we would show how easy it is to cut your own if you have the glass.

firstly the golden rule "measure twice cut once"
a good glass/tile cutter is a must as you are wasting your time
with a cheap one and a good straight edge.
put a bit of masking tape along the glass in the rough area you
want to cut.then mark the line on the tape with a black pen,
remember when making lines for cutting to allow for the width
of the blade.when you mark it up flip the glass over and you
should be able to see the line through the glass like so



now score the line in the glass using the straight edge to keep the blade
running straight.then simply put a prop on the underside of the score(we use the straight edge)
and apply pressure on each side of the score and it should break easily.
check youtube videos on glass cutting if you are still not sure.
you should now have the two pieces of glass needed for your weir



remember to handle waste glass carefully as learned from previous builds its easy
to cut yourself on the glass



so now its time to call on the friend that helped you with the hole cutting to get the weir
put together.best method is hold the glass in place and get your mate to stick tape
on the tank along the lines that you want to position the glass but position the tape
about 5mm out from the position that the glass will be put.the reason being that after
you silicone the weir and use your finger to smooth off the silicone it will spread out
until it goes over the top of the tape.then when you peel off the tape(before the silicone cures)
you will be be left with nice straight edges on the silicone.now leave the tank for at least
12hrs to make sure the silicone has fully cured before testing for leaks.







so only jobs left to do now is acrylic on the weir,weir overflow cone and painting.
these will be covered soon but for now its time for another coffee and maybe
some cookies this time lol




be back soon............................
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sticky Re: how to convert a standard fish tank to a marine tank (3ft tank build)

Post  phantom on Thu Jan 06, 2011 9:40 pm

acrylic on its way so the tank should be finished and hopefully running
this weekend Very Happy Very Happy
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sticky Re: how to convert a standard fish tank to a marine tank (3ft tank build)

Post  reefkeepersni on Thu Jan 06, 2011 9:42 pm

Hopefully the Acrylic is on its way lol
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sticky Re: how to convert a standard fish tank to a marine tank (3ft tank build)

Post  reefkeepersni on Fri Jan 07, 2011 12:48 am

Once we get this bad boy setup it shall be the ultimate reef of its size Smile
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sticky Re: how to convert a standard fish tank to a marine tank (3ft tank build)

Post  reefkeepersni on Fri Jan 07, 2011 3:17 am

Thanks to the great folks at http://www.theplasticman.co.uk/ we are just waiting arrival of the Acrylic and things will be on there way.
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sticky Re: how to convert a standard fish tank to a marine tank (3ft tank build)

Post  phantom on Sun Jan 16, 2011 8:51 am

so the acylic arrived (very fast,next day from dispatch) thanks again to the plastic man.
so tools need are,

jigsaw,
square,
tape,
marker.

find out what width of blade the jigsaw has then you know how many
slots you need to cut to make up the flow needed for your
intake to the sump..........



so to work, I stand back an take pics while andy does all the hard work.....as usual lol!



and this is what you are left with





the camera does not do the colour justice, perfect shade of blue for tank building Very Happy

then basically stick it in place



and thats it all done





now just to fill it and get it running......Ill post the results.

so a very professional finish for a little time and effort but all worth it.
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sticky Re: how to convert a standard fish tank to a marine tank (3ft tank build)

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