180gallon- Bottom up, the whole 9 yards! FISH ON THE WAY!!

Discussion in 'Freshwater Aquarium Builds' started by MissyRay, Jun 17, 2016.

  1. MissyRay

    MissyRayValued MemberMember

    Hi All,

    So I decided to start this thread now because my mind is absolutely reeling. I just finished the first phase of stocking (as some of you may know) my 75 gallon but tomorrow the work on the 180 starts. Hopefully I can keep this one thread through the whole development of this tank.

    Feel free to pick and choose what to reply to specifically but I have lots of questions and opinion-asking to do below!

    So my uncle is fabulous and has a fish obsession. He originally was mostly a goldfish guy and took them to shows and all that. Now he mostly has cichlids in species-only tanks and some goldfish I think. Had 21 large tanks at one time and has scaled back to about 6. He's also an artist and just a totally creative and inventive guy who I just love. I called him about a month and a half ago with a filtration question for my 75. Over the course of several phone calls and texts he said he is making some more room for his painting and offered me one of this 180 gallon tanks. Oh my! Well I just couldn't say no, obviously, amazing, so my sweet hubby entertained me and agreed we would take it.

    Initial plan was for it to be in the den/basement. Safe on the foundation.

    1. Fast forward. I will not be happy with that. I have a huge great room begging for decor and this would be an amazing display tank. That said, yesterday my dad and husband reinforced the floor joists and added 2 floor jacks below where the tank will be, luckily in an unfinished part of the basement. I am STILL a nervous wreck, so is my dad, and my uncle. I did call my insurance company and switched my policy to one that would cover the tank and any catastrophic event that could possibly happen to this thing but still!! Am I just nuts? Don't people do this all the time!

    2. The stand. The one he has was built into his basement specifically for his floor and tank. Just by pictures alone I can tell it is not level (it's level for him because of an uneven floor). Picture below. I can't risk it. I'm buying a black cabinet stand from the semi-local fish store. It will look better with my decor too this way and I won't have to jimmy some kind of curtain around the other 2x4 stand. It's not cheap, $500. Sound reasonable when the tank itself is free?

    3. Sunday we drive out to his place. We got a hotel for the night because it was a good excuse for a hotel night no kids ;) Then Monday morning I have a moving company coming to take the tank out of his basement and place it on my flatbed trailer. My husband is worried about bouncing with the shocks or something on this thing and suggested fitting it into our 6ft bed truck. The mover/friend on this end says no way. Says the guys won't be able to lift it well into the truck bed and with the tailgate needing to be open its not safe. Says plenty of blankets and tying it down in the bouncy landscape-style trailer is fine. Thoughts? Anyone do this before?

    4. I have only used HOB filters but for both appearance and the size I think I need canisters. Probably 2. I like to over filter btw. Thoughts?

    5. Lastly....... Then what! Lol. I have no idea what I want in this thing.

    All STOCKING suggestions welcome!

    Maybe of help is that my water is a ph of 8.2-8.4 (I have trouble reading the kit), my KH is about 18 and my GH I would say is about 4. I have softened water but bypass it for water changes.

    I know cichlids would just love it so that's an obvious option but I'm not sold at all yet. I would love a species-only angelfish tank but what about that ph? I am literally open to any and all stocking lists of any kind of fish.

    I would really like black sand substrate, black or maybe a deep blue background (should I paint it on?) and fish that will pop against these. I am not good with live plants, love the idea but the few in my 75 are not happy with me so I don't expect this to be a planted tank. Maybe a few here and there down the line but I'm gonna concentrate my efforts on plants in the 75 first to see if I can keep them alive.

    Thank you everyone who looks at this!

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 23, 2018
  2. Aquaphobia

    AquaphobiaFishlore LegendMember

    So awesome! I have no idea what to say except that I want to follow this adventure;D
  3. OP

    MissyRayValued MemberMember

    Thanks! It is an adventure for sure. This is way new territory for me :)

  4. Cef

    CefValued MemberMember

    180gallon- Bottom up, the whole 9 yards!

    I could only dream to have a tank that size! (For now). Been playing with getting a 125g for a pair of oscars! Will follow this thread! And getting a 180 for free! *drool

  5. aniroc

    anirocWell Known MemberMember

    I clearly remember the day I brought home my 180g in a Silverado extended cap.
    I strongly suggest suction cups to carry the monster. Six people will do.
  6. OP

    MissyRayValued MemberMember

    Suction cups? I believe we have 3 men... That won't do it?

    Well I guess my uncle, husband and I would make 3 more people. But none of us are really able and/or supposed to be doing much lifting. I'm just weak, uncle isn't as young as he used to be, and hubby just had cervical spinal fusion. We might not be much help!
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 17, 2016
  7. 19jlbaumanNew MemberMember

    This sounds like so much fun! I'd suggest a community tank, that's what I have and then if you want a one fish kinda tank maybe do angles in your 75 :)
  8. aniroc

    anirocWell Known MemberMember

    Yes. Window glass suction cups. They were lent to me by the tank's manufacturer. It made the job a lot easier.
  9. OP

    MissyRayValued MemberMember

    Possibly! So many many choices in that one choice too lol!

    Well that's interesting... I might have to make some calls to see if we can find those somewhere. I don't think either of the moving companies have them or I would think they would have told me. Thanks for that tip.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 17, 2016
  10. aniroc

    anirocWell Known MemberMember

    Granite or window installers will have them
  11. OP

    MissyRayValued MemberMember

    Very long day is it is still early BUT got the monster up out of the basement and safely into our trailer. Packed it in all nice and safe. The tank is about 18 years old by best guesstimate and it's pre-tempered glass era so the glass is literally a half inch thick. I think all my panicking about it breaking wasn't necessary. 2-hour drive home and I can almost relax. Wednesday we will move it into the house. I'm totally stoked! image
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 23, 2018
  12. scottishduck

    scottishduckValued MemberMember

    For a tank that size, two things come to mind:

    1 - you can probably build a fantastic stand out of 2×4s or 2×6s and plywood for cheaper than the $500. Check out the DIY King on youtube. Joey just last week posted a video on the making of a stand for a 375 gallon tank. Advantages to this include making it look how you want and matching the existing furniture in the room. I think a giant black box would be an eyesore in most rooms.

    2 - Filtration. Look into a giant freshwater sump, trickle tower or wet/dry filter. That's what I'd do with a tank that large. These can be done very cheaply (relatively) and can reportedly work just as well as canisters. The only thing that you'd have to worry about is an overflow to get the water to the filter. Again, Joey has lots of tutorials on his channel. And you can find all sorts of ideas from others online too.

    Also, I'd just like to state how jealous I am that you get to embark on this journey. I will try to stay updated and live vicariously through you. :)
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2016
  13. OP

    MissyRayValued MemberMember

    Thank you!

    1.... Well I knew the stand wasn't quite what I wanted, and I am not a patient person so, I already bought a new stand. See pic below. I appreciate the suggestion tho! I'm pretty happy with this one. It fits the decor well and once the tank is on top it should look nice. I also think adding a canopy at some point could look nice.... But I like no canopy for functionality.

    2.... I am checking out Joey and the videos tonight! I love the idea of a sump but I literally have no clue what it entails. Do they all have to be drilled through the tank??? See? I truly am uneducated in that department. Never had to be before but I do now! If I go with canister filtration, I will actually use 2 because I like having a backup whenever possible.

    I will keep everyone posted on this journey!!

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 23, 2018
  14. Aquaphobia

    AquaphobiaFishlore LegendMember

    That's a very nice stand! Looks like mine, only 3 times the size;)
  15. Geoff

    GeoffWell Known MemberMember

    I'm definitely following this! Yeah, that huge empty space in your great room is just screaming for a giant tank! I'm jealous.
  16. OP

    MissyRayValued MemberMember

    Right? That's exactly how I justified this... "But what else could we possibly put on that wall?".... I must say I have a very patient and understanding husband (I think he has a motive here tho, he wants a new car to play with lol)
  17. scottishduck

    scottishduckValued MemberMember

    I can admit when I'm wrong. That stand works in your room.

    As for the overflow, you CAN drill your tank... but there are other options that could work and look decent enough. a DIY PVC overflow could work.

    Canisters are definitely easier if you have the funds though... on the other hand, for a tank that large you could even do a DIY canister filter and make it the size you want with the media you want.

    I admit... I'm in a bit of a DIY kick right now... :)
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2016
  18. AtreyusMomValued MemberMember

    I'm new here and to all this so I don't have any advice for you, but i wish you the best with whatever you decide to do and i can't wait to see the finished tank!! Good luck, and i like that stand alot, it looks great!
  19. tyguy7760

    tyguy7760Fishlore VIPMember

    I would say that a sump is probably your best best. 40g breeder would probably be sufficient as a sump for this tank. Alternatively you could do 3 sunsun 404b's. They are about 80 bucks a pop but have over 500 gph on them. That should be enough filtration for this monster.

    Are you floor joists under the tank 2x6's?

    As far as stocking goes, I'm not sure I can help because you seem to have already gotten your blood parrot fix on the 75 :)

    But I'll give a shot nonetheless. Remember I'm a cichlid guy :)

    How deep is the tank? I'd consider a female pearsei as a centerpiece

    Otherwise other larger peaceful cichlids I would consider are

    Chocolate Cichlids
    A group of demon eartheaters (they are peaceful despite the name)
    And of course...MORE BLOOD PARROTS
  20. KingD

    KingDFishlore VIPMember

    FOLLOWING!!! haha. You're so lucky to have a tank that big. Can't wait to see how this turns out

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice