Habitat - Indoor :: The indoor pond project has started.

Turtle tank setups and other indoor configurations.

Post Posted: Mon May 07, 2018 9:07 pm   The indoor pond project has started.

I'm turning the spare bedroom into a so called fish room. First thing I want to do is get the turtle pond set up. I hope to have it up and running in a couple months as money allows. It may be a slow go but I'll keep this thread updated as I go along so feel free to offer advice as you see fit. Just don't expect a fast moving project because I can only throw about twenty bucks a week towards it. It's all going to be DIY and I've never done anything like this before so any advice is appreciated.

First off I bought a 100 gallon Rubbermaid stock tank. I filled it outside to ensure that the drain plug wasn't leaking. Then put it in the room to get an idea of how I wanted to set it up.

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I've decided to run it parallel with that right wall with the tank ending right at that electrical outlet. I'm going to place my sump filter in between the tank and the wall with the window. I'm going to build a wall around the tank with a plywood deck on top. This will keep the filter hidden and provide basking areas as well as a place to have live plants. I'm also planning to run a 4" PVC pipe around the left and back wall of the deck with a small pump feeding it for an aquaponics system so that I can have the benefits of live plants in the water without the turtle eating all of it.
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Post Posted: Mon May 07, 2018 9:37 pm   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

So I've been working on the filter. I found a 30 gallon storage tote that I'm going to try to use. It may not end up working out but I'm trying to work with what I have so may as well give it a go. The sump is going to have four chambers, Inlet from the overflow I'm going to build in the tank and mechanical filters. Through two small baffles that I"m hoping to place the heater or heaters in. Then into a very large area for biological media which is going to be Lava Rock. Then into the pump area. I've bought a 620 GPH pond pump. I would have liked to have a bigger pump but this one was affordable although I may decide to upgrade it down the road.

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In this picture the inlet will be on the right. The water will flow over the first baffle after going through my mechanical media, under the second then over the third onto the biological media. Then under the fourth baffle into the return chamber which will house the pump.

I have chosen Lava Rock as my biological media. It's extremely porous and extremely cheap. I paid about five bucks per bag and used one and a half. To hold the lava rock I found these nifty little mesh bags that are designed for washing your delicate things in the washing machine. They are 16" long, 5.5" wide and 3" tall. I bought six of them. If I did my math right those six hold roughly 25 liters of media. Which is about four times as much as a Fluval FX6.

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As soon as the silicone cures completely and I pick up some hose I'm going to test it with the pump to see if It will flow enough and to see if the thing just falls apart. I'm kinda winging it here so I have no idea how this will work out. I think it's good in theory.
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Post Posted: Tue May 08, 2018 10:18 am   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

The media bag is a cool idea. I'd also change out that outlet to GFCI rated. Silicone also doesn't stick well to plastic/acrylic, so you should expect it to loosen soon after it cures. Looking forward to the rest of the project!
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Post Posted: Tue May 08, 2018 5:10 pm   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

steve wrote:The media bag is a cool idea. I'd also change out that outlet to GFCI rated. Silicone also doesn't stick well to plastic/acrylic, so you should expect it to loosen soon after it cures. Looking forward to the rest of the project!


Yeah I've found that out. What I'm hoping is I can keep it tight enough that the silicone will act more like a gasket so that even though it isn't bonded it will still seal fairly decently. If this setup can buy enough time to bargain shop for an appropriate aquarium I'd call that a success. I've basically got nothing in it at this point besides the silicon.

Iv'e got a GFCI box with several outlets on it that I plan to use.
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Post Posted: Wed May 09, 2018 9:50 am   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

What are the designs you are thinking of for the tank? We've seen some nicely decorated ones, some even with wooden frames/extensions built around them.
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Post Posted: Wed May 09, 2018 4:03 pm   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

like the idea of the plastic tote for a sump lol
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Post Posted: Wed May 09, 2018 5:17 pm   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

steve wrote:What are the designs you are thinking of for the tank? We've seen some nicely decorated ones, some even with wooden frames/extensions built around them.


The area that's going to be too the left of the tank, which will be over top of the sump is going to be for live plants like pothos and such and possibly a 10 or 20 gallon planted tank that'll let me grow plants to feed as well as have some type of live bearers like guppies that I can feed occasionally as well. Around the rest of the tank I'm thinking maybe river rocks or mulch and a couple other plants. His basking area will be to the rear right side. At least that's the plans right now. Subject to change.
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Post Posted: Wed May 09, 2018 6:05 pm   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

Very interested to see how this progresses. I want to eventually do the same as you with that same stock tank, and then eventually build something outdoors using the larger 300 gallon tank. I like your idea of a sump, never thought of that for some reason. If that container doesn't work, maybe one of those stronger plastic totes, or like you said a cheap aquarium.
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Post Posted: Fri May 11, 2018 12:20 pm   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

Well the sump was a fail. Too flexible and not a good bond with the silicone. On to plan B I guess.
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Post Posted: Sat May 12, 2018 10:27 pm   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

I've got some ideas for the filter but while that's brewing I decided to knock out some framework. Hopefully this will provide a little better idea as to layout.

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Still have to work on plumbing but that's kinda dependent on the filter situation so that's still up in the air at the moment.
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Post Posted: Sun May 13, 2018 11:09 pm   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

Looking good so far!
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Post Posted: Sat May 19, 2018 11:06 am   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

anything new ?
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And one teeny tiny baby RES <3
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~11-11-17~<3
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Post Posted: Sun May 20, 2018 8:18 pm   Re: The indoor pond project has started.

I'm out of town this weekend so nothing new.
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