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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Question?
I'm building a exoterra 36"x24""x18" .I'm interested on opinions or a few key things for me .(likely Auratus)

Should I drill a drain on bottom or an inch or two up the back wall ?

My next question would be the depth of water under my false bottom before draining?

If I place on back wall can I plumb it directly into a drain catchment and just leave it open thus leaving water level at a set height ?

thanks
 

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Should I drill a drain on bottom or an inch or two up the back wall ?
I recommend the back wall that way you don't have as many worries if you have to move the tank
If I place on back wall can I plumb it directly into a drain catchment and just leave it open thus leaving water level at a set height ?
Yes. I'm no plumber but yes.

I have mine drain into buckets that I manually empty
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I recommend the back wall that way you don't have as many worries if you have to move the tank

Yes. I'm no plumber but yes.

I have mine drain into buckets that I manually empty
I recommend the back wall that way you don't have as many worries if you have to move the tank

Yes. I'm no plumber but yes.

I have mine drain into buckets that I manually empty
as for a say" egg crate false bottom ... how much standing water would you recommend? bulkhead height ?
obviously being on the side will alway leaves say atleast an 1" plus of standing water or more .And yes I was thinking !/2" line and just into a bucket and dump it ,I will still put a shut off but basically just open .
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
as for a say" egg crate false bottom ... how much standing water would you recommend? bulkhead height ?
obviously being on the side will alway leaves say atleast an 1" plus of standing water or more .And yes I was thinking !/2" line and just into a bucket and dump it ,I will still put a shut off but basically just open .
I was thinking as low as possible then I could just arched the tube up to whatever height I needed before it drain down
 

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Auratus "El Cope", R. benedicta, R. fantastica "LL", R variabilis "Southern", auratus "capurgana", l
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You need to put it high enough that it doesn't crack or stress the glass while drilling, but an inch or so from the bottom should be fine. Personal choice on my part is always to use the back/sides, as you'd have to have an open/wire shelf for the bottom to even be feasible, and even then that's still less mobility if you ever need to scoot it some. Keeping it in the side will also make access easier when the line is inevitably clogged up by substrate, algae growth, or an over-enthusiastic plant root. Standing water in the drainage layer is generally not going to hurt anything. Gravity pulls it down, but nothing is going to make any bacterial growth travel back upwards, and no stagnant odors. As long as you drain it before the water level reaches the substrate barrier, it shouldn't cause ill effects. I usually use around 3" or so of drainage, because I'm personally kinda lazy at times and this gives me a grace period on draining. Also gives me a lot of feedback on misting and such, whether or not I'm over/under doing it.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
You need to put it high enough that it doesn't crack or stress the glass while drilling, but an inch or so from the bottom should be fine. Personal choice on my part is always to use the back/sides, as you'd have to have an open/wire shelf for the bottom to even be feasible, and even then that's still less mobility if you ever need to scoot it some. Keeping it in the side will also make access easier when the line is inevitably clogged up by substrate, algae growth, or an over-enthusiastic plant root. Standing water in the drainage layer is generally not going to hurt anything. Gravity pulls it down, but nothing is going to make any bacterial growth travel back upwards, and no stagnant odors. As long as you drain it before the water level reaches the substrate barrier, it shouldn't cause ill effects. I usually use around 3" or so of drainage, because I'm personally kinda lazy at times and this gives me a grace period on draining. Also gives me a lot of feedback on misting and such, whether or not I'm over/under doing it.
thanks ,
a few questions if I may .
If I just make it at 1" and essentially leave it open and fed into manual dump tank under set up?( with valve to shut off if needed)
I plan on a mist king set up for it so recommendations on where to drill that hole ?
 

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Auratus "El Cope", R. benedicta, R. fantastica "LL", R variabilis "Southern", auratus "capurgana", l
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I usually use a bulkhead and run a bit of line out of it to keep it from getting everywhere.

And the mistking is going to be more of a individual need sorta thing, dependant on your setup. Like if you have broms/epiphytes, you'll need to have them in the "line of fire" so to speak, so you'll have to drill accordingly to where they'll be, be it central or along a back wall and sides. I messed up a lid on one of my 30 gallons, and ended up having to put the nozzles on the front where the lid pulls up. It's janky, but it works... always plan ahead before you drill!
 

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Some tanks have tempered glass bottoms. Don't drill it or it'll explode.

A bottom drain allows you to flush everything out easily if needed. A back drain will be raised up and won't allow entire flushing unless you tilt the tank.

A side drain allows for the correct level of water to always automatically occupy the drainage layer ensuring that nothing dries out too much.

It just depends on your maintenance preferences.
 

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I'm building a exoterra 36"x24""x18"
I believe that no ExoTerras were ever made with any tempered glass. True about some fish tanks, though (yet another reason not to use them for vivs ;)).

I assume the Exo is 36L x 18W x 24H? That's the typical format for dimensions in the US (North America generally?). It matters because if the viv is only 18" high, accepting the trouble with bottom drains may be worth it to gain an inch or two of usable height. In taller vivs this might matter less.

Personally, I bottom drill my vivs, but I come from a reef tank background where that is standard practice. I can totally see why viv people don't want the hassle of bottom drains.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Some tanks have tempered glass bottoms. Don't drill it or it'll explode.

A bottom drain allows you to flush everything out easily if needed. A back drain will be raised up and won't allow entire flushing unless you tilt the tank.

A side drain allows for the correct level of water to always automatically occupy the drainage layer ensuring that nothing dries out too much.

It just depends on your maintenance preferences.
i'm not using any water feature ,I am inclined to go on side with a valve to waste container
 
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