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Re: Bending tubes

Hey Mark,
    If you are trying to bend the stiff tubing that is sold in petshops and
also comes with filters and stuff, I think you are on the wrong track (just
an opinion).  If I may suggest an alternative, why not PVC pipe, connected
using standard PVC elbows.  You can hook two standard elbows together with a
short piece of pipe, then put longer ones in the ends.  If you look hard
enough (I found mine at Home Depot), they also make street elbows, which have
one end big enough for a piece of pipe to fit into, and the other end the
same diameter as the pipe.  Hook two of these together and you can get 180
degrees of bend in a very short distance.  The pipe itself is cheaper than
aquarium tubing.  And because it is opaque, it won't get full of algae on the
    It can be sealed up tight using PVC cement, which is a solvent welding
agent that leaves NO toxic residue after it has dried (otherwise it would not
be legal for drinking water).  Or, if you want to be able to disassemble it,
glue it with aquarium silicone.
    Two other advantages:  You can drill a small hole in the top of the
u-bend, glue in one of those airline check-valve things, suck the air out of
it using plastic airline, and the siphon is set.  No muss, no fuss, no
bother.  Also, if you are returning several overflows to the same location,
you can simply use 1/2 or 3/4 line out of the tank, and run them directly
into a 1-1/2 or 2 inch mainline using reducing tees.
    A 3/4 PVC pipe has about the same inside diameter as a 1 inch stiff tube.
 That should give you a reference on what sizes you want.

    IF by overflows, you mean the rigs some people use to keep a waterline at
a certain point, here's a suggestion.  Run the u-tube out of the tank and
into one of those little hanging things the petshops use when netting and
bagging fish.  Make a hole in the side of this little container at a spot
such that the bottom of this hole is even with the desired waterline on the
tank.attach a piece of PVC into this hole, glue it into place with Universal
cement, which is sold in plumbing supply houses right next to the PVC cement,
and run this piece of pipe off to return to the central filter by gravity
feed.  The water in the container will maintain the siphon in your u-tube,
and the level will be maintained as the water flows into the tank, then
through the u-tube, and down the gravity return to the filter.  If the power
goes out, the water in the tank won't drain below the hole in the hanging
container.  If the filter is below the tanks, and the water pumped back up to
a point above the tanks and dropped into them, then the water won't
back-siphon down through the pump to the filter and onto the ground.

Just my ideas.  I've never actually built anything that complex for my fish,
but if I were doing it, that is how I would.  I've seen a lot of people drill
holes in their tanks, but then you're kinda stuck with it, and they lose a
lot of resale value, should you ever decide to pack it in and get out of this