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Barracks Help


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I have a 3ft tank that i am going to turn into a barracks. i want to use one filter and heater for it all. if i make glass dividers and have them rasie about 0.5cm will this allow the water to be heated and filtered. obviously im not going to have any gravel or anything like that on the bottom of the thank. also is it possible to keep plants alive without them being set in gravel?

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Do you want the dividers to be removable?

What type of filtration are you going to use?

I wouldn't discount gravel just yet, for that size tank, you may find that a UGF setup would give you good biofiltration and good water flow (using reversable powerheads, not airstones).

Plants like java fern and anubias can be grown over rocks and wood, and plants like hornwort can just float around. Most others can be grown in pots if you want to :)

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Thanks guys,

Bettarazzi, that link is good. thats exactly what i want to do. As im new to this again i need to get my knowledge back up. ATM i just have a 3ft tank no dividers, no heater and no filter. Im trying to stay within a low budget, However in saying that i would rather pay abit more for a good setup which will help reduce time in cleaning etc.

So any info on what material should i use for dividers? i was think about making about 7 spaces for bettas and one for the heater and filter. i asked my father about perspex and said 'i dont know i think thats more expensive then glass' not that my father knows it all he likes to think he does lol.

so yeah any suggestions would be good.

Thanks for help so far!

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Be careful how large of a gap you leave if you plan on having longfinned males in there. They will sit on the bottom sometimes and rest near the glass and their tails will go into the compartment next door. Most times people get around this by leaving a gap at the bottom and then adding some pebbles to keep the bettas away from it. Slightly larger than normal gravel would be best for this, think about pea size or larger.

Another option is to attach plastic canvas to the gap. It is a fine plastic mesh that is used for crafting.

You have plenty of options for dividers, especially if you want them to be removable.

*plastic canvas strengthened with poster hangers - great water movement, flexible, easy to cut, can be bleached, fish can see each other.

*display binder covers - minimal water flow, flexible, easy to cut and punch holes in, can be bleached, works like 'carding'

*picture frame glass - minimal water flow, rigid, tricky to cut, can be bleached, fish can see each other, cheap and easy to get

*8-10mm glass - minimal water flow - rigid and able to support water weight (can be non-removable) very tricky to cut, needs edge grinding, can be bleached, fish can see each other, pretty expensive.

*perspex - Minimal water flow unless drilled, a fair bit of flexibility depending on the size, easy to saw and drill, can be bleached, will scratch easily, fish can see each other, expensive, usually in pre-cut lengths (paying for unusable leftovers if you DIY)

*lexan (like perspex) - Minimal water flow unless drilled, less flexibility than perspex, easy to saw and drill, can be bleached, will scratch but less than perspex, fish can see each other, very expensive, somewhat harder to find.

If you go with something the fish can see through, make an area of it opaque so that they can hide away if they fish.

With the filter, you kind of need to have an idea of what sort of dividers you'd want first. Ideally you want an intake in one side and an outlet in the other to get good flow through all sections without it having to be so strong as to irritate the ones closest to it.

Have you considered a long rear compartment for the heater and filtration and the fish compartments in front of that coming off at right angles? IMO that seems like a nice efficient setup that allows even filtration and heating, as well as the ability to hide your gear behind a piece of tank backing fitted internally :)

EDIT: sponge filters seem best for breeding :) look for the cylindrical black ones.

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Thanks Callatya,

What about tin... my Dad works for a security company which uses tin sheeting (like thin colourbond) do u think metals would affect water quality?

Also another idea... i could get frames made up that normally go into windows and have them fly screened? this all would be free of my dads work. just use off cuts? this why i dont need to have a gap and there would be good water flow and its free. just abit worried about how metal would go in the tank and the plastic stuff that fly screen is made out of.

Feel free to tell me if its a bad idea.


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Metal isn't a great idea. It rusts and tends to release things into the water. A lot of plastics are OK, and I'm pretty sure the fibreglass mesh would be OK, but if not then you could use tulle (tutu material) from the fabric shop. If you can get them and can be sure that they haven't been sprayed with pesticides, real estate for sale signs might work. I've sen a few of the security places around here use that material for adverising, so perhaps that could be worth investigating.

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