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Jacob's High Tech Fish Room Build

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With my matten filters or sponge filter/uplift retrofit I just used bunnings 4mm fittings.

Put a 4mm take off barb inside or through a drilled hole in the pvc, and then inserted a bunnings 4mm tap in the line outside the tank.

I just test installed a high flow/energy efficient side filter in my 5x2x2 so interested what you come up.

Cheers,

Dan

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A few minor updates:

A few new 5x2x20" tanks arrived over the weekend and I was able to get the first one plumbed in and filled. I went with a slightly different side sump design this time around and it is my favourite design to date. I think I'll be sticking with it for all future tanks. the big advantage is that should a holding female spit in the tank, all the fry get sucked into the side filter and can be retrieved with ease :-)

IMAG1572.jpg

IMAG1574.jpg

I also managed to get my fishroom "control centre" set up. From here I can input and test all the programming for my Neptune APEX which is the heart of automated water changes for each tank. As per the initial design intent for this room, the high tech part is aimed at making ongoing maintenance as low effort as possible.

PhotoGrid_1449274564395_1.jpg

Next step - Introducing a few more Tropheus colonies :-)

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This is one sexy build Jacob, if you ever feel in the Christmas spirit of giving to the poor, I'll take that tank you have up for sale off your hands ;)

Am I reading your PH right? 11.8? I know Trophs like it high but...wowzers :)

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Haha thought so. I love reading your builds, from the 8fter to this one. A thorough job every time. Nice.

Thanks mate - Looking forward to getting every spare spot on my racks filled with a 5x2 tank. Hopefully by mid next year i'll be there. Project for the Xmas holidays is running the airline around the inner perimeter of the room so that I can but a backup sponge filter in each tank.

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A few minor updates:

A few new 5x2x20" tanks arrived over the weekend and I was able to get the first one plumbed in and filled. I went with a slightly different side sump design this time around and it is my favourite design to date. I think I'll be sticking with it for all future tanks. the big advantage is that should a holding female spit in the tank, all the fry get sucked into the side filter and can be retrieved with ease :-)

IMAG1574.jpg

Next step - Introducing a few more Tropheus colonies :-)

In the photo above - Make sure you have enough gap between glass plates to slide a bottle brush between or you will not be able to clean out the slime/algae/biofilm in a years time.

Also you might want to lower the top level of internal glass a fraction. If your bottom intake clogs, the pump will continue to pump out until your side filter runs dry (ruining your pump). Lowering the top glass is like an emergency overflow and let water in (over the top) to save pump.

Thanks mate - Looking forward to getting every spare spot on my racks filled with a 5x2 tank. Hopefully by mid next year i'll be there. Project for the Xmas holidays is running the airline around the inner perimeter of the room so that I can but a backup sponge filter in each tank.

Another option to having a separate back up sponge in each tank is to have 2 different air pumps on the same central air circuit supplying the same sponge. When one air pump fails, the other will continue to supply some air but the drop in overall volume is immeadiately noticable. This saves you having 2 separate central air lines and 2 separate sets of sponges. Not only saving you money but reducing your maintenance.

Fishroom progress looks good. I've gone down the high tech path and the best way to reduce maintenance (in my opinion) is to remove all the technology.

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Thanks for the feedback [MENTION=470]aquaholic99[/MENTION]. I've been playing around with side drop filters for quite a while. Previously I had some 5x2x2's with side drops and airlift pumps (since on sold) - Thread here. In these latest tanks I have allowed an approximate 4mm gap between the glass. easily enough to fit a cleaning utensil or thin cotton rag down to loosen any algae or detritus build-up.

In regards to the back-up sponge filters, I currently run DC pumps in each of the side sumps and as a backup to one of these failing (even though highly unlikely), I'll be running a main airline around the perimeter of the room and sitting a sponge filter in each tank. I figure you can never have too much Oxygen and water movement when it comes to Tropheus anyways ;-)

So far, the use of technology, namely automated valves and pumps more than anything else, has allowed me to perform water changes without even being in the room. It is this automation that I believe will continue to be a huge timesaver as the number of tanks increases. Plus, being a bit of a gadget junkie, it helps cater to my addiction :eek:

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[MENTION=470]aquaholic99[/MENTION]innovator said:

"I've gone down the high tech path and the best way to reduce maintenance (in my opinion) is to remove all the technology. "

Couldn't agree more!

Are fishkeepers getting bogged down with too much gear that will do this and that? Yep.

Are manufacturers and distributors pushing new filtration gear etc with "all the bells and whistles" to try and thin our wallets? I think so.

Is fishkeeping/breeding being made too complicated? Yep.

There are some better ideas/equipment that have improved over the years but where are we heading? A fishroom we don't have to enter because its all automated and pristine?

I say keep it simple for the win.

Feel free to flame me if you disagree.

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[MENTION=470]aquaholic99[/MENTION]innovator said:

"I've gone down the high tech path and the best way to reduce maintenance (in my opinion) is to remove all the technology. "

Couldn't agree more!

Are fishkeepers getting bogged down with too much gear that will do this and that? Yep.

Are manufacturers and distributors pushing new filtration gear etc with "all the bells and whistles" to try and thin our wallets? I think so.

Is fishkeeping/breeding being made too complicated? Yep.

There are some better ideas/equipment that have improved over the years but where are we heading? A fishroom we don't have to enter because its all automated and pristine?

I say keep it simple for the win.

Feel free to flame me if you disagree.

I think it's a simple case of each to their own. No one is mandating that fish keepers buy the latest fishy tech. If you want sponges, an air pump and a hose for water changes then go for it.

For me I'd rather spend the small amount of free time I have enjoying the fish and let the automation handle the rest.

Sent from my Nexus 9 using Tapatalk

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helped set up a shed for tafe,loosing air was a major problem(no power)We stared with air bottles,but with nobody there on weekend,ran out.Ended up using a dialup modem(texted whoever was on standby) when power dropped out.air cylinders kicked in then pressure switch kicked in battery /inverter,for emergency air until someone turned up..We where breeding highly stocked barramundi breeding tanks.Loose air loose everything!

If it's loose you didn't use the correct torque setting!

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Thanks for the feedback [MENTION=470]aquaholic99[/MENTION]. I've been playing around with side drop filters for quite a while. Previously I had some 5x2x2's with side drops and airlift pumps (since on sold) - Thread here. In these latest tanks I have allowed an approximate 4mm gap between the glass. easily enough to fit a cleaning utensil or thin cotton rag down to loosen any algae or detritus build-up.

In regards to the back-up sponge filters, I currently run DC pumps in each of the side sumps and as a backup to one of these failing (even though highly unlikely), I'll be running a main airline around the perimeter of the room and sitting a sponge filter in each tank. I figure you can never have too much Oxygen and water movement when it comes to Tropheus anyways ;-)

So far, the use of technology, namely automated valves and pumps more than anything else, has allowed me to perform water changes without even being in the room. It is this automation that I believe will continue to be a huge timesaver as the number of tanks increases. Plus, being a bit of a gadget junkie, it helps cater to my addiction :eek:

I understand that using technology is a way for some to combine hobbies. Just like some like to photograph fish or breed or build filters.

I work in I.T. and it's very easy to implement a smart house with as much automation as you want but I have also kept fish for many years and run many many tanks.

Sometimes having two filters to safeguard a tank simply means you have doubled the risk of failure.... Don't get me wrong, I have been down the technology path myself but have learnt this isn't for me the hard way. I used to implement automated phone calling alarms, failsafe sequences and computer logs. So I'm not saying you are wrong, I'm just providing another opinion and other options.

An overflow drain and dripping tap is literally all you need for fully automated water change. And a normally closed solenoid (tap) on a high water storage tank is all you need to safeguard against power outages.

Another example - I used to breed quite a few tropheous species. I used to rob eggs and artificially incubate 24 hours after spawns to maximise yields. I ran a small specialised hatching room with multiple tanks, labelling system, UV sterilisers, bumping temperature to speed egg development, microscope to monitor successful egg development etc. I've also kept tropheous in tanks so full of java moss that I'd never know how many fish were there. The java moss kept amazing water quality and hid holding females so I'd just harvest babies out once a month.

The forum is to promote education, create awareness and stimulate discussion in my opinion.

Edited by aquaholic99

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One mans technology is another mans ....., not sure why you say doubling your chance of failure, to be honest that makes no sense to me. I would like to have a Plc controlled fish room, why not gives me something to tinker with, technology can be implemented rather simply and if that's what you like why not.

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If one filter has say a 3% chance of failure. Example - perhaps a leaking hose would drain a tank, jammed impeller may create anaerobic toxins, electrical short would trip power off completely.

Some people have two filters on a tank to safeguard their fish. Does this increase the chance of failure to 6%? And some people have multiple filters, not just two.

Instead of investing say $250 in technology to safeguard your invaluable broodstock, you could buy a second tank (a low tech method) for more broodstock. Having two lots of broodstock is better insurance against total wipeout of your fish species than having an alarm. In my opinion that is... :)

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If one filter has say a 3% chance of failure. Example - perhaps a leaking hose would drain a tank, jammed impeller may create anaerobic toxins, electrical short would trip power off completely.

Some people have two filters on a tank to safeguard their fish. Does this increase the chance of failure to 6%? And some people have multiple filters, not just two.

Instead of investing say $250 in technology to safeguard your invaluable broodstock, you could buy a second tank (a low tech method) for more broodstock. Having two lots of broodstock is better insurance against total wipeout of your fish species than having an alarm. In my opinion that is... :)

Are you familiar with wild caught prices today? $250 buys 2 fish....

Sent from my HTC_0P6B using Tapatalk

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i am loving this build. technology doesn't really increase or decrease chances of failure in my experience, it just changes which things can fail.

still i'd rather be able to go visit a sick grandmother for two weeks knowing things are set up to operate in my absence.

i'm working on my own idea for misting nozzles on my aviaries that will turn on when the outside temp hits a certain point.

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Are you familiar with wild caught prices today? $250 buys 2 fish....

Sent from my HTC_0P6B using Tapatalk

Yes... I used to own ten retail aquarium stores and had my own fish import facility.

The price is just an example.

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If one filter has say a 3% chance of failure. Example - perhaps a leaking hose would drain a tank, jammed impeller may create anaerobic toxins, electrical short would trip power off completely.

Some people have two filters on a tank to safeguard their fish. Does this increase the chance of failure to 6%? And some people have multiple filters, not just two.

Instead of investing say $250 in technology to safeguard your invaluable broodstock, you could buy a second tank (a low tech method) for more broodstock. Having two lots of broodstock is better insurance against total wipeout of your fish species than having an alarm. In my opinion that is... :)

I see so instead of 1 out of 3 voting and triple redundancy in a nuclear power plant you just go back to a single system without redundancy and spend the money on another plant! lol! understand what you are saying now, just a silly comment.

Edited by Wogboy

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Risk analysis/mitigation is always required.

In the case of a nuclear powerplant, I would remove all fail safes and rely on two experienced operators doing everything in tandam (as a fail safe) knowing they would be the first to die if there was failure.

In the case of a fishtank, it doesn't really matter if systems fail and you lose all your fish. My biggest disaster was losing an entire room full of high end exotics. I lost so much money that I had to shut the fish room door and took me a week to return. You can imagine the smell and mess by then. I had to shovel out dead fish by the wheelbarrow load. And yes... this room had a lot of technology to safeguard.

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If one filter has say a 3% chance of failure. Example - perhaps a leaking hose would drain a tank, jammed impeller may create anaerobic toxins, electrical short would trip power off completely.

Some people have two filters on a tank to safeguard their fish. Does this increase the chance of failure to 6%? And some people have multiple filters, not just two.

Instead of investing say $250 in technology to safeguard your invaluable broodstock, you could buy a second tank (a low tech method) for more broodstock. Having two lots of broodstock is better insurance against total wipeout of your fish species than having an alarm. In my opinion that is... :)

good points, all things to consider and i guess it boils down to personal choice what ways you decide to safeguard your stock. personally i would go with the high tech, but good idea to make separate systems, and i would also be personally testing water every three-six months to make sure the equipment stays calibrated spot on.

seems like the best thing to do is try to imagine all possibilities of failure, and implement systems to deal with that possibility, and even the possibilities of failures in the back ups

and the main thing is that technology should never replace actually monitoring things like behaviour, ‚Äčas with my birds, automatic watering systems do not mean i dont go check them every day, but in the event that i need to go away for a week, i know my bases are much more covered than if the water was manual

Edited by DeBree420

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If one filter has say a 3% chance of failure. Example - perhaps a leaking hose would drain a tank, jammed impeller may create anaerobic toxins, electrical short would trip power off completely.

Some people have two filters on a tank to safeguard their fish. Does this increase the chance of failure to 6%? And some people have multiple filters, not just two.

I just couldn't leave this without addressing it further.

Putting a power outage aside, as without a backup generator all filters and tanks will fail without power. Using your example above, if filter 1 has a 3% chance of failure and then a second filter is added as a backup, the chance of BOTH filters failing simultaneously does not increase to 6%, instead the odds are reduced significantly to what most would deem an "acceptable risk"

Being in the IT industry as you say, think of it in the same way as a RAID 1 array whereby if one drive fails, all the data (or in this case biological filter media) is mirrored on the second drive and the system can still continue operating as per normal.

I'm in no way trying to discourage fishkeepers from following a simple minimum tech route, however feel that we need to be accurate when taking about technology redundancy issues.

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It's definitely not worth nit picking over minor details but if one filter has a 3% chance of tripping out your power supply or leaking (and draining the tank) then having two of these filters will double the risk. It doesn't matter which one fails and certainly doesnt matter if they fail simultaneously.

The low tech risk mitigation would be to have two separate power circuits, different filters types hopefully one on an auto transfer switch.

[MENTION=3772]DeBree420[/MENTION] - i keep birds too. Instead of rigging up an automated temperature activated mister, have you considered misting one small portion of the aviary each day regardless? The birds appreciate the bathe area and it's a secondary source of self cleaning water.

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[MENTION=3772]DeBree420[/MENTION] - i keep birds too. Instead of rigging up an automated temperature activated mister, have you considered misting one small portion of the aviary each day regardless? The birds appreciate the bathe area and it's a secondary source of self cleaning water.

i already have misting on a timer, but i would like to be assured that if the temp was up, it wouldn't matter what time of day it was, the sprinkler would go off

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