A Dream Come True - 20 Gallon Hex Tank

Leeman75

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Since I was a kid and a friend of mine had a Hexagon Tank in the corner of his kitchen and I used to love watching the fish swim around, I've alway, always, always wanted a Hexagonal Tank and I have finally found one that is at a price that I just cannot ignore! So, with a little pleading with my wife (she already thinks I have too much invested into fish), I am buying it tomorrow!!

The way that I got her to agree to it is by telling her that it will be a project tank and one that I will be working on for a while and not putting fish in right away, but building the pieces over time. I will document everything here on how it goes, but my first thought regarding the tank is in regards to filtering. It's obviously a taller tank, what kind of filtration works best? I'm not looking for canister, and always like HOBs. Would a sponge filter work better?

I will add a picture tomorrow when I get the tank. I'm thinking through all sorts of parts of this process, such as building a stand, figuring out what kind of substrate to use, aquascaping, etc. I am SO excited and will share the steps in this thread as they come along. I'll probably be asking for opinions on stocking as well because I have NO idea on what I'm going to put in there.
 
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Flyfisha

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As you are still in the planning stage. Let’s think about stocking a 20 Hex. Is it a tall tank with a narrow footprint. Is the surface area small for oxygen exchange.
 
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Leeman75

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Flyfisha said:
As you are still in the planning stage. Let’s think about stocking a 20 Hex. Is it a tall tank with a narrow footprint. Is the surface area small for oxygen exchange.
Yes, it's tall. I don't actually have posession of it yet (that will come tomorrow), but I have a picture of it. It's next to a 10 gallon in this picture.

10 and 20.jpg
 

Flyfisha

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I can tell by the way you write about the 20 tall there is no stopping you?

Perhaps you can read between the lines of what I wrote how I feel about those tanks?

Lets say pick your stocking carefully and enjoy the tank.

Thinking of fish that don’t need horizontal space to swim I am thinking of small fish and shrimp.
I have ember tetras in my live and cherry shrimp. I know this combination works and is colourful. Both are orange and stand out on a green plant background.

Being a tall tank will mean any light will have trouble at that height. Low light plants like Anubis perhaps.
Guppy grass? Java fern.?

Any species that can survive in any 20 gallon tank will be fine with a sponge and box filter. Both will help with surface movement for max oxygen exchange.

Another option is a school of killifish?
 
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Leeman75

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I get you. I'm not under any delusions that I can stock that tank in the same way that I would a 48" or even 36" tank. This will be my 8th tank and I have those sized tanks already, so I'm good with that.

The draw for me with this tank is the shape and doing some different things with it.

Killifish are an interesting option and I've thought about keeping them before. The challenge will be finding some that are viable. The only kind that I've seen locally are Golden Wonders and they get too big and need more horizontal space than that tank will afford.

Shrimp are a cool idea too, but I'd need to make sure that I can get any plants to thrive in there before jumping in.


I may have my mind made up already with this tank, but I'm not planning on jumping in. I've got enough tanks to keep me happy and be able to take this one slow and careful.
 

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I am sure you can order Killifish on line in your country?

Some are very small. Perhaps to small for the nice looking tank?

Sparkling gourami . CPDs. Chilly rasboras? All might make a better display.
Even just male endlers display well as the flair for each other. I saw a line of tiger endlers today I had a hard time waking away from.
 
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Leeman75

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Flyfisha said:
I am sure you can order Killifish on line in your country?

Some are very small. Perhaps to small for the nice looking tank?

Sparkling gourami . CPDs. Chilly rasboras? All might make a better display.
Even just male endlers display well as the flair for each other. I saw a line of tiger endlers today I had a hard time waking away from.
I try to stay local where I can with fish. I've not had good experiences ordering online.

Chillie's are pretty cool (no pun itended) and the Endler angle is a thought too. Those are very colorful and striking.
 

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You can order killifish eggs online, could be an option.
 

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Since the extra height is not particularly useful to fishes that can fit in a tank like this, maybe you can fill it half way and turn the tank into a riparium (with emersed aquarium plants, marginal pond plants, or even house plants growing above the water line)? That would be cool, would partially circumvent the issues of lighting this tank, and would make it difficult for jumpers (most fish that would be comfortable in this tank, really) to escape the tank.
 

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I think if the tank is something YOU want, that’s awesome! Regardless if the foot print is ideal for everything a traditional 20g could house.

I can picture a nice branch of manzanita wood diagonal to fill the vertical space and maybe try some Val in the back, something tall and skinny would fit in nice for this tank.

I find that if you find a way to add structure to the various levels of the tanks that the fish will follow. My LFS owner showed me this concept one day as we walked around and you can see wether it were stones, plants, wood, etc. the brightest point in the tank seemed to be where the fish would stop at. We walked around looking a different tanks seeing how consistent this was. Just like fishing in a lake or river. If you can find a stop where a tree feel into the water or some rock, you should have a sweet spot because that’s where they will feel comfortable! So while you won’t want a lot of large fish I’m sure you could make use of this with plenty of small species.

Enjoy the tank and glad you found something YOU always wanted!
 
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Leeman75

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Cody said:
I think if the tank is something YOU want, that’s awesome! Regardless if the foot print is ideal for everything a traditional 20g could house.

I can picture a nice branch of manzanita wood diagonal to fill the vertical space and maybe try some Val in the back, something tall and skinny would fit in nice for this tank.

I find that if you find a way to add structure to the various levels of the tanks that the fish will follow. My LFS owner showed me this concept one day as we walked around and you can see wether it were stones, plants, wood, etc. the brightest point in the tank seemed to be where the fish would stop at. We walked around looking a different tanks seeing how consistent this was. Just like fishing in a lake or river. If you can find a stop where a tree feel into the water or some rock, you should have a sweet spot because that’s where they will feel comfortable! So while you won’t want a lot of large fish I’m sure you could make use of this with plenty of small species.

Enjoy the tank and glad you found something YOU always wanted!
Thanks for your comments! It is something that I do want and am excited to put it together. I do appreciate the levels concept and will definitely look into how I can best achieve it. One of the things that I'm going to start doing first is looking for a centerpiece driftwood piece. I want to find one myself rather than buy it. This is a true project tank and I've got the mindset that I want to take my time, do it right, and really enjoy the process on this tank, so I'm thinking I will take several months to pull everything together just right.

Incidentally, here is the tank in my basement...I got it today.
20200705_173238.jpg
 

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Leeman75 said:
Thanks for your comments! It is something that I do want and am excited to put it together. I do appreciate the levels concept and will definitely look into how I can best achieve it. One of the things that I'm going to start doing first is looking for a centerpiece driftwood piece. I want to find one myself rather than buy it. This is a true project tank and I've got the mindset that I want to take my time, do it right, and really enjoy the process on this tank, so I'm thinking I will take several months to pull everything together just right.

Incidentally, here is the tank in my basement...I got it today.
20200705_173238.jpg
Very cool!

I do think finding a nice piece of driftwood will be the key for that so definitely keep you eye open for something! What is the height and width on something like that.

I think that would be a really cool pea puffer tank!
 
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Leeman75

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Cody said:
Very cool!

I do think finding a nice piece of driftwood will be the key for that so definitely keep you eye open for something! What is the height and width on something like that.

I think that would be a really cool pea puffer tank!
You know, I know so very little about pea puffers, but I did have a thought for a moment today about just that, so I may have to explore that thought a little bit.

I also had a thought of maybe having an Apisto pair in there with some small, maybe Ember Tetras for a little higher up.

The tank is 24" tall and from one point of the hex to another, it's about 18 inches, however, I think just looking at the angles, the volume is probably close to similar to a 16x16x24.
 

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Leeman75 said:
You know, I know so very little about pea puffers, but I did have a thought for a moment today about just that, so I may have to explore that thought a little bit.

I also had a thought of maybe having an Apisto pair in there with some small, maybe Ember Tetras for a little higher up.

The tank is 24" tall and from one point of the hex to another, it's about 18 inches, however, I think just looking at the angles, the volume is probably close to similar to a 16x16x24.
I will say I am partial because a Pea Puffer tank is my bucket list tank(10g or 20g Long) now similar to what this is for you. But If you want something small and unique they would fit the bill in that tank. They will be a little more specialized needing frozen foods but they are small enough that I don't think they would be taxing on the budget to maintain. Cory form Aquarium Co-op has a couple good videos out there on Pea Puffers as do others.

That really is not a horrible footprint and if you stuck to something as you suggested with a pair or something unique it would be pretty cool. Especially since it sounds like the goal is to come up with a cool aquas cape. I think it would really be a perfect show tank.
 
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Leeman75

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Cody said:
I will say I am partial because a Pea Puffer tank is my bucket list tank(10g or 20g Long) now similar to what this is for you. But If you want something small and unique they would fit the bill in that tank. They will be a little more specialized needing frozen foods but they are small enough that I don't think they would be taxing on the budget to maintain. Cory form Aquarium Co-op has a couple good videos out there on Pea Puffers as do others.

That really is not a horrible footprint and if you stuck to something as you suggested with a pair or something unique it would be pretty cool. Especially since it sounds like the goal is to come up with a cool aquas cape. I think it would really be a perfect show tank.
I think you get my vision! I am really wanting to see this be a really nice, show-style tank. I will be sure to check out the videos from Aquarium Co-op...I love his stuff!

Ultimately, I'm good with a technically way understocked tank with the right sitaution that looks good. I've got several other "community" style tanks that I love and am able to try all sorts of breeding, pairing, different species, etc. So, I've got that out of my system and want this to be a special tank that looks nice and showcases something very special.
 

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Leeman75 said:
I think you get my vision! I am really wanting to see this be a really nice, show-style tank. I will be sure to check out the videos from Aquarium Co-op...I love his stuff!

Ultimately, I'm good with a technically way understocked tank with the right sitaution that looks good. I've got several other "community" style tanks that I love and am able to try all sorts of breeding, pairing, different species, etc. So, I've got that out of my system and want this to be a special tank that looks nice and showcases something very special.
Yes, totally get it. Once you kept varieties of different tanks you sometimes have a vision beyond the goal of "how many fish can I fit in this glass box"

Look forward to seeing what you build with this!
 

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I have a column tank that’s 15 gallons! I originally started with a 3.5 gallon with some guppies (too many for a 3.5) and they love my column tank! They make full use of the bottom through the top. I know they aren’t exactly the most interesting or cool to keep but it’s a suggestion :)
 
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An update on the project:
I have filled the tank with water to check for any leaks and am happy to report that there are none!

I have also determined the placement in my basement/fish room where the tank will be. It will reside between two 29 gallon tanks that I have already running. One of those tanks has Shell Dwellers in it and the other was given to me recently with a large goldfish in it that I need to figure out what to do with.

Next steps in the project include running placing an outlet on the outside of one of the 29s and then also building a stand for the tank. I have a plan ready for the stand. It will be simple. Will purchase the limber next weekend and start working on that.

In the meantime, I'm trying to determine what the stocking will end up being when everything is set up, cycled, etc. I like the idea of layers as described earlier in this thread. I think I want to do something like a smaller Cichlid. I'm thinking of either a pair of Apistos, a pair of Kribs, or a pair of Nanacara Anomala.
 

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Sounds good. Have you got any ideas for scape, plants etc? Are you interested in the paludarium idea? A pair of apistos in a paludarium type build would look awesome and maybe you could add a small school of top dwellers too. Hope u find something you love since this is your dream tank :)
 

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