45 gallon hex deconstruction / reconstruction and suggestions - Dendroboard
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Old 08-18-2015, 10:52 PM
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Default 45 gallon hex deconstruction / reconstruction and suggestions

Hi guys, i posted a more detailed history on this tank in the introduction thread in the lounge (since its the reason im here )but i finished putting the tank together and have pics of the job.
Im looking for suggestions on a submersible pump for a waterfall feature. Ive looked around and most seem like overkill for having such a small amount of water in the tank. I have what im calling corrugated plastic, i dont know what its really called, it was over with the plexiglass at home depot. Ill be using it to make a housing the pump can fit into so that if anything happens to it i can get it out without having to destroy my background, and it and the tubing/cords will be hidden.
Im also looking for suggestions on a lighting fixture. I have a florescent cool white bulb under my kitchen counter where i keep my spider plants, a curly fern (variant of boston fern) and my sons venus fly trap. They are all growing very well although i do move the vft to the east window where it receives full sun until noon (its in an apothecary jar) because its a high light req plant. I was wondering if a similar fixture would work for this tank. I have a floating shelf I'll be installing above the tank where i hope to suspend the fixture. Im hoping to fill it with orchids, bromiliads, tillandsias, aerial mosses (spanish) and terrestrial mosses (something other than sphag which is slowly growing with the vft already)
still debating what to do for a lid but I'd like to keep it super simple, like a piece of plexi with a bead of caulk to add friction so it doesnt slide off the top. Prob part plexi part mesh and ill need a spot for a fan on it.

Ok on to the tank build. I got it for free from the curbside... it was in bad shape. The guy who previously owned it had tried to patch a leak unsuccessfully. I stripped all the old silicone off aside from a residue that i just couldnt get off, boy oh boy did i try tho!. I purchased one new panel to replace one that had heavy residue, a chipped corner and scratches. At least the front panel is crystal clear now but considering the tank was free i didn't really feel like paying $80 for 4 new panels (the back two will be covered in gs, that corrugated plastic and silicone background so the condition of the glass didn't matter too much.)
After everything was cleaned as best i could get it i reassembled the tank and its curing on my diningroom table as i type. Cross your fingers for me that it'll hold water! LoL

Heres the bad recaulk




I tore (gently but it still snapped... its old) the rims off, i want rimless



Stack of clean glass... so pretty! It has a stand too that i plan to paint over to match the table i built in the kitchen



Prep work



Caulking



Curing. I gotta go back and clean up a few spots but i dont think it came out too bad considering what it was before i got started.



Happy to hear any and all suggestions and general info. This site has been great to browse through and while i have no immediate plans to raise pdf that was my original intention when i picked up this tank. Maybe one day when my plates not so full.
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Last edited by TranscendentalTopiary; 08-18-2015 at 10:54 PM.
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Old 08-18-2015, 11:18 PM
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Default Re: 45 gallon hex deconstruction / reconstruction and suggestions

For the waterfall I strongly suggest a canister filter instead of a submersible pump. No matter how well you think you have planned it it's gonna be a big hassle to do maintenance.
Besides, the extra filtration doesn't hurt.

Take it from someone who's made that mistake, (more than a few times) it's well worth the extra $ and work
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Old 08-18-2015, 11:23 PM
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Default Re: 45 gallon hex deconstruction / reconstruction and suggestions

I was wondering about filtration, it seemed like it should have something... even my tiny vft in a jar has activated charcoal in the bottom, but i couldn't find videos or tutorials for vivariums with waterfalls that had filtration, just pumps. Thanks, I'll look into it some more
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Old 08-20-2015, 06:36 PM
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Default Re: 45 gallon hex deconstruction / reconstruction and suggestions

Hey guys im back with a whole new set of questions. I went out and bought a bunch of wood. Found a cork flat and a pair of rounds at a local herp breeders shop, I got a couple peices of malaysian driftwood from him also. The peices are too big for my biggest pot, how else can i sanitize it? Ive read i can soak it for a couple days then bake it, seems ok for the malaysian but idk about baking the cork. I might be able to get a bigger pot from a second hand store thatll fit the wood but the cork floats, im assuming id have to weigh it down somehow... prob with the malaysian but no guarantee they'll have one. Does soaking in my tub with the hottest water my tap will put out work?

Whats the best way to go about this? Baking or boiling or tub soak?

My next question is about air circulation. I noticed a lot of ppl use a modified cpu fan. Not really comfortable wiring one up myself. Anyone use aquarium fans? Theres a few on the market that look just like the modified cpu fans. For the money id be willing to dish out for the peice of mind but if they die quickly in this application idk i guess I'll have to keep looking.

For substrates i bought exoterra plantation soil brick and a bag of exoterra jungle earth. I also have on hand a huge bag of sphagnum moss. Figured a mix of the three would make a nice floor. Im going to have to expand the soil then let it dry out to stick some of it to the silicone gs background. Is there an easy way to dry it back out ?(ex:baking) or just be patient and stir it around often while it air dries?

Heres a pic of the stuff i got

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Old 08-20-2015, 06:38 PM
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Default Re: 45 gallon hex deconstruction / reconstruction and suggestions

Oh yeah... will boiling the cork bark kill the moss thats currently growing on it? I assume yes
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