Hoodless tanks

FriendsNotFood

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Hi thar!

So I want to buy another tank, but I'm short on money. And I've noticed that you can get a very basic glass tank, no hood, no lights, no filter, in large sizes for very cheap.

Was wondering if many people use these, and if you normally buy hoods for them.

I've only ever gotten tanks with a hood with inbuilt lights and filter.

I was thinking if I just got a plain glass tank, bought a filter and lights for it and then built a hood myself that I could save some money. It's about $200 for a 200L plain tank, $60 for a filter. About $80 for lights. So.... lets say $350 for a 200L tank. I bought my 140L hooded blah blah for $350. I'm happy to spend less than $400 on a tank too.

What does everyone use?
 

steed1172

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some people might be shocked at my tank lol...the 55 cost me $8..(yard sale) the light(only 24" of it works lol.. new one on way) was free from brother, filter too, heater was busted... got a new one in fall..the stand is foundation blocks(or w/e they called..) with planks across, pretty cheap and very sturdy... just incase with some plywood, or cover with sheet and its all good. i have no cover.. even with fish that jump.. fairly often lol... but the water level is low.. for snails,so the fish don't jump out, cuz i got no lid, AND cuz it may be too much weight.(tank is on 2nd floor)... getting acrylic sheet when room downstairs gets finished( if ever >.>) then i can fill all way up, imma put that lid on, its gunna be on a real stand...(new light should be here by then..)

oh and my gravel and most my decor was from bro too hehehe...
 
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FriendsNotFood

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I actually saw a post from someone years back that had modified a household fluero light. Thinking I might be interested in this too
 

Marc M

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Actually have to advise against it....Legionnaire's Disease is caused by a bacterium that grows in water that contains algae (standing water) Considering the fact that all tanks have some level of algae growing in them, it is best if they are covered.
 
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FriendsNotFood

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What I am asking about is how people go about hooding the plain glass tanks, not saying I want to keep an unhooded. Maybe I should ask for this to be moved to DIY? Guess that's what it will be...
 
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crazedACD

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Some people use plastic egg crate to prevent fish from jumping, but you have to deal with a lot of evaporation. And then you can always look into the glass tops...they are pretty cheap here? I think maybe $15-20 for a 55g.
 

JustinF

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Plexi-glass is cheap, cut it to size and you have your self a hood at least of sorts. It can warp if not thick enough tough. I guess a box with standard fluorescents could work to sit on top. Sounds like it could be interesting.
 
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jetajockey

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I was at walmart looking at light fixtures, ended up buying some for my new stand. They have fluorescent light fixtures from 8" all the way up to 48" for 5-15 bucks. If I was to rig one to a cover i'd probably use the shop light model because it has a canopy type thing that directs the light downward, it was under 10 dollars without the bulb (another 3-5 bucks)
 

Butters

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My 20 long tank isn't covered at all and it works just fine. I have a lighting system that attaches to the rim of the aquarium so I don't need a hood for the lights... hoods just get in the way anyway ;D
 
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FriendsNotFood

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Yeah I'm thinking what I will do is make a wooden hood for it, and line the inside of the hood with some sort of plastic so that the wood doesn't absorb any evaporated water, and then attach a light fitting to the inside. I was thinking thin plastic like those binder files have as backing.
I'll probably paint the back and attach a canister filter.

Then all I need to do is remember to leaveroom for cables and tubes in and out

I've been looking at my actual office lights, and I don't see why a smaller version of one of them wouldnt work. It looks to have the same connectors as the light in my tank! Just need to make sure I get something low enough wattage so it won't heat the tank or melt the plastic lining.
 

Red1313

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Usually I like a hood for evap purposes. However if you're on the cheap saran (cling) wrap or tinfoil work great if you build a raised rim. However lighting would be an issue. However it would work in the interm.
 

jetajockey

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you could just paint the inside of the wood with some sort of sealer. they make thompsons weatherseal here for wooden outdoor decks. Obviously would take a bit of studying up and test runs to make sure that it doesn't leach any chemicals.

there are some DIY canopy builds online, you might consider going with one of those, this seems viable for a larger tank furniture piece) anyhow.
 

JustinF

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If painting I think they make a marine grade paint for boats, I would imagine it would work.
 
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FriendsNotFood

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Yeah I did think about the sealant stuff, but most of that needs to be renewed over time, doesn't it?
I used to have decking and we had to reseal it once a year :3

I was planning on sealing it then covering the inside with plastic and sealing that with silicon.

And for painting, I've had success using enamel paint on the outside of the tank Will likely just do that again. I was really suprised how well glitter and enamel spray paint work as a background!!!

Have a little 21L tank that I'd like to jazz up with some sort of wood case and lights. Might do the little one first as a trial run, then do the big one

Edit: one thing.... holding it together. The amount of evap from a tank wouldn't be enough to rust the screws holding it together would it? I could probably work something with dowel or plastic nails but a drill with a ss screw is so much easier :3
 
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sirdarksol

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You can do without any of those things, although leaving the hood off is probably going to cost you more in the long run, as you're going to have to top off much more frequently. Even a half hood is much better than no hood at all.
I have a 4' by 18" tank for which I'm going to make a hood out of a $20 piece of acrylic. Watching on eBay, you could probably find the acrylic for much, much less.
 

claudicles

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Can I clarify? Those glass tanks usually have a glass cover do't they? Very few tanks are sold without any top to them. If they aren't it would be pretty easy to go to a glasier and get a bit of glass cut. I thought Lilwyn... was enquiring about the onramental wooden hood that usually goes over the top to hide the workings. Am i wrong?

Oh and as for Legionaires, didn't the big outbreaks come from air con plants? In which care there must have been some water circulation for it to get to the air circulation, in fact it must have been aerosolised. I thought sporadic Legionaires was pretty uncommon. I worked in the health system for 18 years and studied for 9 years prior to that and never seen it. I'm not a respiratory physician but I would think the risk would be extremely low. A lot of the fish shops I have been in have hoods but no close fitting glass covers and with the number of tanks they have you'd think if the risk was that high we'd be seeing cases from fish shops. Darwin may be different from Sydney of course.
 

sirdarksol

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Thank you, Claudicles, for returning the Legionaires discussion to a more polite and productive one.

Legionaires does not necessarily come from stagnant water, nor does algae necessarily have anything to do with it. It is an amoeba-born bacteria that, when inhaled (i.e, from water atomized by a waterfall, or perhaps when fording a river, or when a filter splashes the water), gets into the lungs and causes the disease. Yes, it is possible for legionella pneumophila to live in our aquaria. However, a hood wouldn't do much, as the splashed water is going to get out the hole that is cut right where the filter goes (I have calcium deposits on my wall to prove it). The amoeba that the bacteria lives in thrives at 95 degrees. Our aquaria are usually kept at the low end, or even below, the temperature the things like.
It's also really not that likely. As Claudicles said, there are pet shops all over the place, with varying levels of covers for their tanks. It's very unlikely that it would ever come up.
Add to that the fact that we're talking about an aquarium without a filter and presumably without an air stone, and there is no way it could be transmitted, except for during maintenance, when the hood would have to be open, anyway.
Again, I'm not saying it's not possible, just that it is extremely unlikely.

As far as tanks coming with hoods, most of the tanks I see do not, unless they're in a kit (and sometimes not even then). But, as I mentioned, and as Claudicles mentioned, it's not all that difficult or expensive to make one or to have a glazier make one.
 

jetajockey

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sirdarksol,

Rather than make a new topic I thought I'd respond on this one. I am looking for a simple, effective, durable and economical lid. What is the most economical route to do this? I've been looking around online and I really want something that is simple and durable and not a total eyesore.
 

sirdarksol

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Sounds good, since this will likely help Lil, as well.
I'm working with acrylic (aka Plexiglass). I'm making a wooden frame that fits in the grooves of the top of the aquarium (where the lid normally goes) that will divide the top into four sections. The acrylic will sit on top of these. You could do something similar with glass, too, and it would probably be quite a bit cheaper.
 
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FriendsNotFood

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Yeah I'm not sure how the glass cover will work.

These tanks have... half lids I suppose you could call them. They have glass panels across the top. 1 on either short edge, then usually 1 or 2 long ones stretching down the middle. I have no clue why they've done it like this, but I was thinking of building maybe a hood that curves from the top of the tank because it will be pretty annoying having a cover pressing straight down on the glass panels, and then I could attach lights to the hood.

I have a close fitting acrylic lid for one of my tanks and I hate it. I have to remove it to feed, and because of the condensation I drip water everywhere when I do it. Would be a lot easier to use if it had a smaller panel to lift for feeding. Want something easier to manage though, since ultimately this is to go on a 55gal, and I think I'd have trouble lifting that out of the way every time :3

Here we go :3

I turned into an artist (don't laugh at my fail pic ) to better describe what I mean.

Left side is the top down view of the panels on these tanks.
Right side is the basic idea of the hood. Not totally sure how the lights would fit into it. The exterior would be wood, and the interior would all be plastic lined. Think it's feasible? Not sure how I would attach it, whether the whole lid would be hinged, or whether just make a door in the front of it so I can get in enough to feed and siphon.
 

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