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Shrimp tank build

Jaseon

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Joined
10 Jan 2021
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378
Location
Wales
So ive been collecting old windows to make a few shrimp tanks. Bit of labour separating them, but no graft, and found it quite enjoyable. I scraped off all the old silicon, and got some nice glass out of it. The silicon only cost 8 quid a tube so thats not bad for an aquarium?

Im going to try, and silicon these ADA style for a cleaner look. The glass is 4mm, and could ideally be thicker. If the seal doesnt look too clever ill do a traditional run of it inside for good measure.

Im going to try HMF on these, and making two of them. Will look nice side by side.

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Jaseon

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10 Jan 2021
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Wales
So my second tank is finished. I did cock up a bit with the silicon, and its on a bit thicker than i would have liked. No leaks though so thats the main thing. The first tank i did i just silicon the edges to get that cleaner look, but it being only 4mm i decides to run a thin bead inside the same thickness of the glass for extra peace of mind. I stuck it together first trimmed off the excess when dry then put the bead on. The second tank i made the mistake of applying the inside the same time, and without clamps the glass sometimes moved a bit so ill be getting those corner clamps next time or just do what i did on the first tank. It looks ok, and with everything in it wont be noticeable. I just hate seeing silicon on the edges of the tank. They are not for show so ill have to be content with it.

Im going for HMF for these, and the way the tanks are positioned i might do a corner filter on one, and a full one at the back so i can see through to both tanks where im seated. Obviously algae will eventually cover the glass, but that's good. I need to strengthen the frame underneath more before cracking on with it, and thinking of having a cull tank under there as well. Ive got plenty of glass so i might make a 40gallon breeder. I dont know how far i can push this 4mm glass so i wouldn't go bigger than that. I can always throw on a few braces?

So its nothing big or pro looking, but im doing what i want so far, and it hasn't cost me anything. I was thinking of building a frame around them with an option of another smaller tank on top or just for extra storage.
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Jaseon

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So thought id update this, and a few snaps of one of my shrimp tanks ive set up with a HMF. I cut the sponge slightly wider for a snug fit, and although i could have left it at that i didn't like the look of it not sitting straight so i silicon strips of glass on the edge to hold the sponge in place. I think it creates more of a seal, but look a lot better than just wedging them in, and it just slots in from the top. I run a strip along the bottom to provide a dam of sorts. Ive got some bogwood in there, and managed to attach some dry old privet through the gaps in the wood. I have a load of moss im going to weave inside the branches, and just let it grow out. I also have some java to stick on there as well. Ill be adding more plants as i go, but it will be mainly one i can attach or float as im not going into the substrate. I want to keep it thin, and used some river sand i had left over. As im not going with an uplift im using a cheap small filter to move the water around, and i know the pipe looks a bit odd lol, but im hoping to get a bit of water agitation at the surface so went with that. Oh, and i made a little glass feeding bowl from a nutella jar haha.

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dw1305

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7 Apr 2008
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nr Bath
Hi all,
I dont know how far i can push this 4mm glass so i wouldn't go bigger than that. I can always throw on a few braces?
I'd probably use braces, and keep the tanks quite shallow (don't fill them up with water). As a general rule it is the deeper tanks that need the thicker glass.

cheers Darrel
 

arcturus

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Joined
6 May 2021
Messages
444
Location
DE
Yeah. Its only 4mm, but good enough for the sizes im doing.
You certainly have expertise in this area, but tanks this size tend to use thicker glass. Are you sure the glass will not bow if you keep the tanks without braces? I also do not know how this window glass react to deformation when compared to the floatglass (or low iron optiglass) used in aquriums.
 

Jaseon

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10 Jan 2021
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378
Location
Wales
Hi all,

I'd probably use braces, and keep the tanks quite shallow (don't fill them up with water). As a general rule it is the deeper tanks that need the thicker glass.

cheers Darrel

You certainly have expertise in this area, but tanks this size tend to use thicker glass. Are you sure the glass will not bow if you keep the tanks without braces? I also do not know how this window glass react to deformation when compared to the floatglass (or low iron optiglass) used in aquriums.
Bit late now lads eh? lol.

I have a 24ltr that has 4mm glass. I just measured it again, and its 5mm not 4. So from those braces the larger side panes are 15x13.

I do have the vertical braces at the back for the HMF so from those braces the larger side panes are 15x13. As im having a cover for this tank i was going to add glass corners for it to sit on so to be on the safe side i might as well run brace strips the full length up to the HMF.

I dont see this glass bowing, and the photos make the tank look a lot bigger than it actually is.

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Jaseon

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10 Jan 2021
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Wales
So water, and some plants are in namely Moss, and java fern. I will be adding some shrimp hides and such until its ready. I stuck a few braces in, but didn't like seeing them, and i know they can get a bit mucky over time so i had some black vinyl wrap spare so run it around the top. I dont usually like borders on tanks, but its worked out nice i think. The waters a bit murky so will add more snaps over time once i get more plants in.

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Jaseon

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Joined
10 Jan 2021
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378
Location
Wales
Oooo that looks real nice! Is there a trick to getting it level? Yours looks very professional
I started at one end with the tape flush with the top of the glass then made sure the other side was the same then slowly let it flatten out on the glass. I used a credit card to smooth it .There is a slight bow to it due to pulling the tape slightly, and i had to trim some off the top of the glass. I can see it, but ill settle with it.
 

Jaseon

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Thread starter
Joined
10 Jan 2021
Messages
378
Location
Wales
This is 2 inch wrap from ebay. I bought it originally to de-chrome my car, but never got around to it. The heater, and HMF came to £25, and the glass was free so although its a DIY job im well pleased with how its turned out so far. All i need now is a lid so was thinking of some polycarbonate. I wonder where i can scrounge that from lol.

I have another tank the same size which i want to set up with a corner HMF.
 

Ds_BerSerK

Member
Joined
27 Jan 2022
Messages
31
Location
Malta
So ive been collecting old windows to make a few shrimp tanks. Bit of labour separating them, but no graft, and found it quite enjoyable. I scraped off all the old silicon, and got some nice glass out of it. The silicon only cost 8 quid a tube so thats not bad for an aquarium?

Im going to try, and silicon these ADA style for a cleaner look. The glass is 4mm, and could ideally be thicker. If the seal doesnt look too clever ill do a traditional run of it inside for good measure.

Im going to try HMF on these, and making two of them. Will look nice side by side.

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Can you specify which silicon you used, thanks?
 
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