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Fwd: Fishroom

I am going to forward this and all the better ideas I get (from now on) on my
search for fish room ideas.  Check out Mr. Louden's homepage for a couple of
ideas on rack building and other aquaria ideas.

Chuck Church
CEFChurch at aol_com
Indianapolis, Indiana USA

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I had the good fortune to get my fish room started last Spring and
moved into it in May. The room I used is in my basement and is small,
about 10 x 15 feet. Right now I have racks along the longest wall and
two more racks to be built giving me racks around three walls and
room for about 70 tanks of varying sizes. My racks are all build to
accomodate ten gallon tanks placed on them end-wise (short end out)
and that way I can place 2s, 5s, 10s, 15s and long 20s on the racks.
Corners are always wasted space, :-(

I had a contractor come in and do the wiring and lighting. There are
two separate circuits on GFP devices around the walls with an outlett
about every 2.5 feet. (This really isn't enough. Seems I'll never get
away from power strips.) THe contractor also installed a utility sink
for me and after I had been in the fishroom for about a month, I
called him back to permanently connect my R/O unit into the cold water
supply with a valve so I can use the sink and make R/O water at the
same time. It seemed whenever I was doing water changes I had to
disconnect the in line to the R/O unit to use my utility sink fawcet.

This room was an unfinished concrete block room with two windows. I
insulated with blueboard before building racks and I will need to
build a door to close the room off from the remaining basement area
which is primarily crawl space. Hopefully the lights and a small
ceramic heater will keep the room warm enough this Winter.

The contractor hung about 5 shoplights in the ceiling and they are on
a timer. I was hoping this would be all I needed but I have since then
added lights to the lower levels of the racks.  I have these on timers

My R/O output goes into a 25 gallon barrel sitting next to the utility
sink and next to that barrel is a 24 gallon "shoebox" which get's my
mixed water. (I mix 5 parts R/O to one part tap water for water that
has about 75 ppm hardness.) The BIG shoebox has a box filter running
in it and a heater. The box itself is sitting on a piece of leftover
blue styrofoam insulation so I am not trying to heat the concrete
beneith as I heat the mix water. Over the barrel and water storage
reservior I built a workbench which is most times covered with small
shoeboxes full of fry and test kits and all kinds of junk! Guess I'll
never get away from the clutter!

There's little sophisticated in my fishroom. To clean tanks I have an
old heavy metal typwriter table on rollers that I put a bucket on and
go by siphoning water out of the tanks and into the bucket which I
hand carry over to the sink to dump. I was fortunate in that I have a
floor drain in this room so the drain from the utility sink dumps into
that. (And I NEVER worry about water spills anymore!!!)

To refill tanks I have a strong pond pump and 25' of plastic hose. I
drop the pump into my mix water box and just cruise along from tank to
tank pumping fresh water back in. It is much better than the old
double direction bucket brigade I used to have to do.

Eventually I'll need to go to a small blower for air but for right now
I am using one dual cylinder dynamaster and some individual vibrator
pumps. The dynamaster can handle about 25 tanks. That's better than
half of the 40 or so that I have set up right now.

About the only thing I might have done differently is to NOT try to go
three levels on the tank rack shelves. The top shelf is a little too
high and the bottom shelf is a bit too low to work on either
comfortably. But not having that one shelf would have reduced my
capacity by 25 tanks or so. I guess I can put up with this small

The whole setup is much more efficient and I was fortunate to have
this room to use for this purpose. It has made my fish keeping a lot
more enjoyable. I am sure you will be glad you have consolidated into
a fishroom too. Good luck!

| R. Frank Louden | AKA #07581 |   e-mail: flouden at netusa1_net         |
|                 |            | HomePage: www.netusa1.net/~flouden    |

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