PDA

View Full Version : 300 Gallon South American Tank build



jayo
03-24-2016, 02:09 PM
Hello everyone! I don't post a lot of stuff on here, mostly read others post and sell tanks, but I felt this was a worthy post so here goes...

Soooo.... About 3 months ago I picked up a used 250 Gallon tank on craigslist. Tank is 9 feet long, biggest tank Iíve ever owned! I was stoked! 800 bucks for Acrylic tank and stand with canopy? Hellz yeah! The seller stated it was a show tank from an aquarium store near Henry County. (Donít recall the name) So, I get up early on a Saturday, swing by Home Depot and rent a cargo van, and my son and I head out to Henry county from Marietta to pick up the tank. Seller was there along with her Husband. The tank was dirty! I mean sitting for a year or so dirty! Also, on 2 roller carts. I inspect the tank and noticed a small crack in the front pane at the bottom, however, after further inspection it has been repaired properly using Acrylic rod and an Acrylic panel overlapping the crack. Not really a deal breaker, and being it was at the bottom I was fine with that. Also, it had a decent amount of scratches on the inner panels, typical of a salt water tank. It has a center overflow with a wet, and dry side... At first I was confused about the configuration but again I wanted the tank so id figure it out down the line.

Now here's where I want to punch myself in the face! In all the excitement about this tank the seller told me she had some things that would go along with the tank but wasnít sure of what it was. I get there and notice it's a wet dry sump. A little worse for wear but all there with pumps and everything... My DUMB Arse in excitement and hoping she would knock the price down a bit tells her what she has and how much she may be able to get for it if she posted it on craigslist! she still wouldnít except a penny less than 800! So I agreed, packed everything up and went on my way....... but didnít take the sump equipment! What was I thinking? Dumbest move I ever made! Oh well!

So I get the tank, stand, and canopy home and set it up in my den. Sit back and stare at it for hours thinking about how I want to set it up, what parts I need to order, etc, etc..... Then my wife reminds me... Youíre not putting 1 dollar into that tank before you get rid of the other 4 you have. So I immediately post the tanks here and on Craigslist, get responses for both and sell them pretty quick. Iím stoked at this point and ready to start ordering but I hit another hurdle, I canít seem to stay out the for sale section here and on Craigslist. So what do I find? A nice used 125 with stand, lids, lights, filters, and heater for 400. I somehow convince my Wife it would be perfect for our bedroom and we can replace the 29 gallon planted tank we currently had in there.... Surprisingly but with a little hesitation she agreed! This 125 not being drilled and pretty much ready to go, I brought it home and set it up ASAP. Took my running Eheim pro 2 and stuck it in there, along with the Aquaclear 110 that came with the tank and I was good to go.

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/15ikxpbr4lnsngb/AADVs9Jdyf_vZTg1azf1KoPDa


https://www.dropbox.com/sc/a0ieqc93gxg56ma/AAAeIFxuuPx1McbAbTntyjcja

So at this point Iím pretty happy, things are looking good, fish are doing well, etc, etc.....

Now hereís where things take a turn for the worse.... I ordered everything I wanted, all the best stuff I could find, Marine Pure, Matrix, Purigen, Carbon, 2 super huge
Vepotek Gen2 4 Stages Uv Light Canister Filter 550 Gallons, Bulk heads, Lights, heaters, everything...... I want this to be a great tank! In the back of my mind I keep hearing the voice of the seller... "It doesnít leak, we can test it if you want but it will take a while to drain back out", sign number 1..... I tell my Wife, you know I think I should test this tank before setting it up to make sure there are no leaks... She says, "Thatís too much damn water to waste, the lady said it was fine"! Sign number 2, My Wife works for a law firm, she has no idea about tanks, she just likes the completed look... LoL! So I say, "Yeah your probably right, they had another 300 Gallon in their home so it's probably fine"!

jayo
03-24-2016, 02:56 PM
So the day finally comes!

Iím off on Fridays and Saturdays so I wake up early like a kid on Christmas! I begin to setup my greatest aquarium ever! I first install the Bulkheads along with the strainers, I drilled a few holes in the overflow so that the canisters would never run dry and installed 2 bulkhead strainers inside of the overflow. I am running the return lines thru the dry side as well as all wiring for heaters and air pumps. Once all the plumbing was out of the way I started putting the rocks in, then sand.... So far it looks amazing. I was so excited! I couldnít believe the length I still had left so I ran up to Optimum Aquarium and picked up a nice piece of driftwood. I also ordered some fake plants and 6 foot bamboo leaves from Fosters and Smith so I dressed the wood up a bit.

Keep in mind, I was so excited I didnít care about the light scratches on the tank because it wasnít as unsightly with the water in it so I said screw it and filled it up....

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/vjui839a95oql9f/AABxvQQ5BxUn3bTOxqUr6X7ia

So far, didnít see any leaks..... Let it run overnight... And woke up to this!

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/2v1fw16osfjkn8q/AABugbN7qYlyQ3kBG7K-UICFa

OMG! I was pass upset, I was in raged! I didnít know if I wanted to go to the sellers house, stab my Wife, Drink a beer... Just plain MAD!

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/on8r1mbo6rbq3la/AACoMHGjSpHpHYnY8iFs6kvIa

Once I calmed down, drank 6 or 12 beers, I started the drain process..... The look on my Wifeís face was priceless, knowing fully this could have been prevented had she allowed me to test it.... Oh well, stick to lawyers and stuff, let me do my tanks.. LoL!

So with everything drained I said you know what, you know it looks beautiful, but just think how much better it could look if you took the time and polished it out.... So thatís now what I intend to do.

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/dd9ezt68y8x4886/AABBanYkT4qHOxZP83GSAutva

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/livpn233oswpu06/AABLCiLMAF2E1ioATUyDxS88a

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/d5iqw0jra1nsyzv/AABjLzMOElQ_Ho6y4WhgdCioa

So I get the old shop vac out, and vacuum out the remaining water and sand.... Actually its Black Diamond but either way the shop vac did wonders. My Son and I grabbed it and took it outside on the back deck to inspect it and find the leak. Seems to be coming from 2 small places in the front but not near the crack I examined when I bought it. Maybe when we moved it, it bounced a little in the Van or who knows... No Biggie, I can repair it. But wait... What is this I see? Silicone, on an Acrylic Tank? WTF? Clearly someone tried to do a quick patch job and in all my excitement I didnít notice it. I t was only on the left side, of course where the leak was so...... My 6'4, 275lb son dives in with a razor blade and cuts it all out.

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/kcwuwn57h2rkse3/AAA9TGB44J39nWcx2a2IeQy_a

So thatís where Iím at with it now.... Follow me as I set out to repair, polish, and once again setup my 300 gallon masterpiece. I'll post updates as I go.

Tangfan
03-24-2016, 03:10 PM
Nice looking tank. Even with a leak, it is a great deal. I am just wondering how your son - being the size you say he is and seeing him in the tank - got into the tank, and then how he was able to try and squirm out of it. I figure the getting out was worse than the getting in. Would love to see that video. LOL

jayo
03-24-2016, 03:17 PM
Nice looking tank. Even with a leak, it is a great deal. I am just wondering how your son - being the size you say he is and seeing him in the tank - got into the tank, and then how he was able to try and squirm out of it. I figure the getting out was worse than the getting in. Would love to see that video. LOL

It was funny as heck! Didn’t get a video but I will before we take it back inside.

Tropical
03-24-2016, 04:55 PM
Will also be following along, this sounds interesting!

That is a funny picture, alright, lol.

What are you planning to stock?

jayo
03-24-2016, 05:10 PM
Thanks Tropical! Im going with Severums, Acara, Gymnogeophagus, Firemouth, and maybe a pair of Electric Blue Jack Dempseys. This is going to be a long term tank so im starting out with all fish between 2-3". I already have a 6 Sevs, 2 Acara, and 2 Firemouth ill be starting with.

jayo
03-24-2016, 05:17 PM
Maybe a nice designer pleco as well. Anything else you all can think of that would be some what elegant? My predator tank is in my bedroom with, 1 green terror, 2 cubans, 2 salvinis, 2 firemouth, 2 Red Fiestae, and 1 Tire Track eel. I was thinking I may move the Eel downstairs to the larger tank. My Son has a Buttikoferi in a 55 tall, I wanted to add him to the 125 but he chased everyone in his path!

Tropical
03-24-2016, 05:48 PM
You could add a few large koi, or some shrimp, JK!!

I don't have much experience with large tanks, or large fish, but clown loaches would be cool! Not 100% sure they'd be compatible though....

Always been a fan of Red head tapajos, such pretty fish. Really looking forward to seeing the finished tank!

HN1
03-24-2016, 05:52 PM
I'll definitely be following as well. That is going to be amazing! Sorry for the trials and tribulations, but once those are over I'm sure they will have been worth it.

peathenster
03-24-2016, 07:33 PM
Awesome! What are the dimensions?

Perrin150
03-24-2016, 10:54 PM
Wow nice tank!!!!
Since like a lot of people are getting hell lot of deals from craigslist, I actually bought my self a 300 gl tank with stank and canopy, the tank is all glass 3/4" thick and 96Lx24WX30T"
omg it is a back breaker. This will be a South American biotope with my altums and a few species of geophagus and some plecos.
I will definitely be following your post!!!!!! :001_rolleyes:

aXio
03-25-2016, 06:55 PM
Oh how I miss and don't miss my old 300 gallon... lol =)

Joking aside... I really do not miss buffing acrylic... no thank you!

jayo
03-27-2016, 11:35 AM
Oh how I miss and don't miss my old 300 gallon... lol =)

Joking aside... I really do not miss buffing acrylic... no thank you!

Yeah it's not fun, but when its done its beautiful!


Wow nice tank!!!!
Since like a lot of people are getting hell lot of deals from craigslist, I actually bought my self a 300 gl tank with stank and canopy, the tank is all glass 3/4" thick and 96Lx24WX30T"
omg it is a back breaker. This will be a South American biotope with my altums and a few species of geophagus and some plecos.
I will definitely be following your post!!!!!! :001_rolleyes:

Yeah, there was an all glass 300 on Craigslist for 12 or 1300 but it was sold before I could get it.. :(


I'll definitely be following as well. That is going to be amazing! Sorry for the trials and tribulations, but once those are over I'm sure they will have been worth it.

Thanks! I cant wait to get it back up and running!


Awesome! What are the dimensions?

96 Wide
31 Tall
20 Deep at the middle
1/2 Acrylic

jayo
03-27-2016, 12:24 PM
Havent had much time to repair the tank, Georgia and our Bipolar weather! I figured my back deck would be the safest place since my younger kids and there bikes always seem to bump or scratch things. Hope to get some nicer weather this week to work on it. Friday was a bust taking my next to oldest Son to register at KSU and that seem to have been the nicest day I would have had a chance to work on it. Went out yesterday to fill it and find the leak but it started raining just long enough to wet the paper i have down to find the leak. :chair:

Also lost a cuban in my 125, not sure why, all parameters look good. I think he may have been getting bullied by the Salvinis, he had been swimming up top near the return output and Aquaclear for 2 days prior. I noticed the day before he didnt eat as well so I planned to put him in the med tank for awhile but I was a day late... :doubledown:

I did take a few more pics, noticed some crazing at the bottom near the acrylic rod repair done before I purchased it but i'll address.

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/yymp9sh31pb14ou/AABxIVMxqVEQak4xh6TsF7Y-a

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/fj0nbng7vui0qp4/AACrbOzNyhZ3pY3BOQIcYQZ_a

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/xiuf1n4ul94ozzv/AABnbWmm-9aUnyMo5dd_lQzma

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/aupjrhjdk6goh0a/AAAIzjQYczVFJA9MCJHGO6B-a

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/7scayg391pceagm/AAAZ8xSzpWNU-P9mgvgp6Qqoa

Here's the crack I was speaking about before.

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/6g8k9oyp3pd0lnn/AACtOZJ-WWsrLexNydQ3ruHSa

At this point I think I may use some pvc cement and run it thick all around the bottom, any thoughts or ideas?

peathenster
03-27-2016, 01:55 PM
96 Wide
31 Tall
20 Deep at the middle
1/2 Acrylic

1/2" acrylic for a 31" tall tank? MIGHT be a problem for long term but hope not. I wonder if that's why you had the cracks. Also it's more like 250.

jayo
03-27-2016, 02:09 PM
1/2" acrylic for a 31" tall tank? MIGHT be a problem for long term but hope not. I wonder if that's why you had the cracks. Also it's more like 250.

Yeah once you asked I did the tank calculator and came up with the same size... :( Still fine with that, the largest ive owned was 180.

So, anybody see any reason why I couldnt use a thick coat of PVC cement to coat the bottom? I've heard conflicting stories, however Id feel safer using something thick I could like paint on with a brush. Any ideas or pointers please let me know.
Thanks,
Jay

jayo
03-27-2016, 02:20 PM
OMG Peathenster, just checked out your YouTube channel! What was your stocking list on this tank?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m3Ogv2-W94c

Thats the complete look im going for! WOW! Love it!

peathenster
03-27-2016, 03:16 PM
Thanks. That was a 10x2x2 glass, and the back bottom seam busted on me one morning. That's when I switched to acrylic for bigger tanks.

jayo
03-27-2016, 05:09 PM
WoW! Sorry to hear that, what are the species of the 2 large blue like fish in the center of the tank, they were beautiful. Nice Sevs, and Geos too. :waiting:

Well, couldnt help it, bought another tank.... This damn 4 sale section gets me every time... However, after this one I'll have a nice 29 gallon stand, tank and canopy for sale, along with a nice 50 gallon tall with glass tops.

jayo
05-13-2016, 12:41 AM
[QUOTE=aXio;I really do not miss buffing acrylic... no thank you![/QUOTE]

Update coming soon but Jakub you never lied... :fool::oops::wall: At this point im probably 100 hours in on this and I'd never do it again....