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Discussion Starter #1
I would like to put a large tank in my basement, where I have lots of room and a concrete floor.

I currently have a couple of 55 gallon tanks, so what I'm looking to do is get a tank that will allow me to keep larger fish than is possible in a 55 gallon. (As opposed to a larger quantity of the same fish). I want larger and different fish (right now my largest fish are Rainbows)

I see most 90 gallons are still only 4 feet in length, but wider and higher than the 55 gallon tanks. Does this allow for larger fish, for example, some of the fish that reach up to 12" in length? Or is a 6 foot tank required for most of these fish?

Locally there seems to be a huge jump in price between the 90 4ft tanks and the 100+ Gallon 6ft tanks.

Thanks for the help.
 

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I would not put a 12 inch fish in a 4 foot tank no matter what. I would think a 6 foot tank would be a minimum for that. Honestly though, I am in a less fish, larger space camp myself. I want them to have plenty of room to move, not be stressed by others in the tank as they are iin a closed in space and cannot escape that stress. I also like to keep the bio-load as lower but we all have different ideas there.
 

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Yes, bigger is better, especially for larger fish. I always think it's sad when fish are crowded with either too many fish and/or too small a tank.
How happy can anything be if it's confined in a very small space.
 

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Definitely longer and more volume is preferred.

Check local listings on places such as Craiglist for used secondhand tanks which tend to be a lot cheaper than store bought new tanks. It may take some time but bargains can definitely be found...while looking it gives you chance to sort a stock list out.
 

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Agree. With 12-inch fish, a 6-foot or larger is necessary for the health of the fish. You haven't named the fish, but off the top of my head I can't think of one this size that would manage in 4 feet.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks. I may just go with a 90 gallon Cichlid tank. Unfortunately there are so many kinds and compatability between various Cichlids is a mystery to me at this point. I assume a 4ft 90 gallon tank is big enough to house 5 or so cichlids. (They average, what 6-8"?)

I bought two of my four aquariums off of Kijiji (similar to Craiglist), even used there is a substantial jump in price between 90 gallon tanks with stands vs 100 + gallon tanks with stands in my area.

Having said that, I told my wife she could get the diamond ring she's been wanting for our anniversary after we get a big tank for the basement. So she would probably go for a 125 gallon tank. It just might take an extra month to pay for it. I'd probably have to get it from a store just for the sake of delivery. I'd have no way of getting a huge one home. And if I got a huge one home and it leaked I would be pissed. That happened with my first 55, which I bought used. They're pretty accommodating at my LFS, they might even do layaway on a huge setup (125 gallons is huge for us, I know it is typical for some people). God knows the ring is going on layaway. ;)

Byron I didn't specify a fish because off the top of my head I couldn't speak of specific examples, but I was at my LFS the other day and I asked about a few different fish that looked interesting (all small of course) but they all grow to around 12". At the time I wasn't considering a 125 gallon tank so I didn't write down any names. One was a freshwater eel, another was a cool loach that looked like a zebra loach except the stripes were a darker black. Another one was a bala shark. I don't remember the others. But after I left I started putting serious thought into a larger tank. Plus I told my friend our new 55 would be our last tank and my wife said she wouldn't mind one more tank in the basement, so I'm jumping all over that. The ring cements the deal.
 

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Thanks. I may just go with a 90 gallon Cichlid tank. Unfortunately there are so many kinds and compatability between various Cichlids is a mystery to me at this point. I assume a 4ft 90 gallon tank is big enough to house 5 or so cichlids. (They average, what 6-8"?)

I bought two of my four aquariums off of Kijiji (similar to Craiglist), even used there is a substantial jump in price between 90 gallon tanks with stands vs 100 + gallon tanks with stands in my area.

Having said that, I told my wife she could get the diamond ring she's been wanting for our anniversary after we get a big tank for the basement. So she would probably go for a 125 gallon tank. It just might take an extra month to pay for it. I'd probably have to get it from a store just for the sake of delivery. I'd have no way of getting a huge one home. And if I got a huge one home and it leaked I would be pissed. That happened with my first 55, which I bought used. They're pretty accommodating at my LFS, they might even do layaway on a huge setup (125 gallons is huge for us, I know it is typical for some people). God knows the ring is going on layaway. ;)

Byron I didn't specify a fish because off the top of my head I couldn't speak of specific examples, but I was at my LFS the other day and I asked about a few different fish that looked interesting (all small of course) but they all grow to around 12". At the time I wasn't considering a 125 gallon tank so I didn't write down any names. One was a freshwater eel, another was a cool loach that looked like a zebra loach except the stripes were a darker black. Another one was a bala shark. I don't remember the others. But after I left I started putting serious thought into a larger tank. Plus I told my friend our new 55 would be our last tank and my wife said she wouldn't mind one more tank in the basement, so I'm jumping all over that. The ring cements the deal.
If you check those named fish (Bala Shark and likely the Clown Loach) in the profiles, you'll see they need 6-7 feet up.

Re the stand, as this is not in a "living" type room, simple stands can be made from concrete cinder blocks and plywood. Six blocks in two stacks of 3 is what I have under my 4-foot 70g. And the plywood in a 3/4 or 1 inch thick piece that extends just past the tank frame is sufficient for the tank to sit on, above the blocks. This is not a bad looking stand, even for the basement or my fish room.

Cichlid size depends upon species, most of the common Central American cichlids (I'm assuming this is what you're thinking of) are in our profiles.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'll have to decide between a 6 foot tank with some big fish or a 4ft 90 for Cichlids.

Either way, I would be more than happy with the stand you describe, but my wife wouldn't let me set that up in a million years. She almost wouldn't let me put our new 55 gallon tank on the wall next to our 20 gallon high tank because the stands and tanks are different heights (and believe me, it looks fine. She's nuts). I haven't started stocking the 55 yet, or I would add photos to show how perfectly fine it is. I had to promise to use the same substrate in both tanks to make them look more uniform, and I'm sure she'll want the same background too. I also had to agree to bleeding heart tetras in that tank, which I fins limits what I can add to it, but that's another story.

Having said that, I MIGHT be able to talk her into a makeshift stand if we cover it with a black sheet or something, that hangs down to the floor, and if it saves us hundreds of dollars. You might be a genius.
 

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I just set up a 125 gallon, it's huge hehe. For the stand I built one myself. Standard 2x4 construction is more than enough to support the tank. I used 2x6 for the top rails, everything else was 2x4. Thing is rock solid. You can then skin it in oak veneer plywood and trim (or other hardwood) to make it look better.

Do you have a petsmart or petco in your area? If you don't want to build a stand both sell them, but they may or may not have it stocked. Petco you can custom order one no problem, not sure if they deliver to your house or not. Probably several online places deliver too.

But if it's in a basement room, and not a living room or somewhere lots of people will see everyday, then yeah cinder blocks and the thickest plywood you can find works fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I'm in Canada. We have petsmart in my city but not petco. I get my stuff at Big Al's. I just bought a 55 gallon with heater, filter and stand on sale for $269 CAD. I just finished filling it with water an hour ago. I need a freaking python. It took me 21 buckets of water.

Byron, is there a photo of that setup anywhere on site? I'd like to show my wife your homemade stand.
 

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I'm in Canada. We have petsmart in my city but not petco. I get my stuff at Big Al's. I just bought a 55 gallon with heater, filter and stand on sale for $269 CAD. I just finished filling it with water an hour ago. I need a freaking python. It took me 21 buckets of water.

Byron, is there a photo of that setup anywhere on site? I'd like to show my wife your homemade stand.
Here they are, not the best photos, but I took these a few months back to illustrate the stands to another member. The first is the 70g, and the second is the similar-type I built for my smaller tanks. My fish room (whole house for that matter) in on a concrete pad so weight is no issue, similar to it being in a basement.
 

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Nice tanks Byron, I like the idea of the bottom pictures. Somebody likes planted tanks as well :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
That stand is a brilliant idea. The wife is totally up for it, if I cover it with a sheet.

I just got off the phone with a guy who bought a restaurant and needs to get rid of a giant fishtank. He doesn't even know what kind of fish are in it. It's got lights, filter, everything. He said "it's not that big, only 6 feet x 2 feet x 2 feet. By my calculations that's around 180 gallons.

He has no idea what he has there. He didn't even put a pic in his ad, or mention that it came with all that stuff. He just wants it gone.

His ad just said 6 foot aquarium, comes with 20 fish. $300.

THREE HUNDRED DOLLARS!! He even said he would see if he could find someone to get it to my house.

No stand because the base was built into the restaurant. He's in town Tuesday and I'm going to see it.

BTW Byron those tanks are gorgeous.
 

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That stand is a brilliant idea. The wife is totally up for it, if I cover it with a sheet.

I just got off the phone with a guy who bought a restaurant and needs to get rid of a giant fishtank. He doesn't even know what kind of fish are in it. It's got lights, filter, everything. He said "it's not that big, only 6 feet x 2 feet x 2 feet. By my calculations that's around 180 gallons.

He has no idea what he has there. He didn't even put a pic in his ad, or mention that it came with all that stuff. He just wants it gone.

His ad just said 6 foot aquarium, comes with 20 fish. $300.

THREE HUNDRED DOLLARS!! He even said he would see if he could find someone to get it to my house.

No stand because the base was built into the restaurant. He's in town Tuesday and I'm going to see it.

BTW Byron those tanks are gorgeous.
Thanks, you and Tazman. Not very good photos of the tanks, it was only to illustrate the simple stands.:lol:

That's a good deal. Just make sure everything is removed from the tank before moving it, you may already know this, but they may not, they must be completely empty before being lifted.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
It's bigger than I was looking for, I don't know anything about keeping a tank that size. I've never had anything bigger than a 55 gallon tank with HOB filter. But because it is so cheap, I am going to go look at it. If I get it, it will be my last fish tank. And I will probably be making a cinder block stand, god knows what a real stand for a tank that size would cost.
 

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A DIY stand would not cost a lot perhaps $50. I can point you to a design which is good for tanks upto 300g in size and works very well. Let me know if you are interested and I will post the link.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks, if I end up buying it, I'll need that link. I see you're just a couple of hours away. I'm in Ottawa. The guy selling the tank is actually from Montreal, but he bought a restaurant here in Ottawa and he just wants the tank gone.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Found out today my LFS has layaway, which is how my wife and I usually purchase big ticket items. I've picked out a 125 gallon 6 footer with stand and canopy. It's GORGEOUS. I may use it as a room divider in my basement.
 
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