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Ceiling Mounted Aquarium questions


Teresa

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Question for you all . . .

I'm moving into a new house in a few months and have always wanted a see-through aquarium wall. The current floor plan of my house has a half wall between the living and dining room. Within this wall is a cut-out archway that starts about 4 feet from the ground, runs five feet across and 5 feet high. I want to put an aquarium in this archway that can be viewed and appreciated from both the dinning and living room. I don't like how a rectangular aquarium looks under an archway and I also want a place to hide the sump/filter/etc that is out of view of the living and dinning room (plus there just isn't enough space for all of this equipment and an aqarium in the archway). After searching online I found spaceariums.net. This seemed to be the "perfect" solution. I am wondering what more advanced aquarists think about the spaceariums, or ceiling mounted aquariums in general. A discussion of pros and cons would be very beneficial. Also, they are a bit pricey, does anyone know if a local aquarium design shop could create and install something similar for less?

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To be honest, I saw these at MACNA a few years back, and was pretty surprised with it. I think there are a few things you should research, and think on a lot more. Points I'd really dwell on are:

- Given the more narrow dimensions of the aquarium, am I comfortable cleaning the inside (think algae on rocks/sand, or perhaps needing to remove a damaged coral/dead fish).

- Also considering the dimensions, am I confident I'll be happy with the limit it places on aquascaping? Considering the possible aquascapes, will I still enjoy it as a tank fully viewable from both sides?

- Regarding the filtration: will you be happy long term with the equipment supplied with the tank? It's not exact the sort of equipment that can be upgraded or expanded upon - so make sure this is what you want from the get go.

Finally, would you really want a person/place that wasn't specialized in this sort of set-up to be responsible for reproducing similar results for you? I would imagine most shops/places would turn down the possibility of recreating something along these lines, but the biggest advantage you have when buying the real thing is knowing that the product works, has R&D behind it, and everything is fully warrantied. Going outside the box on this sort of thing is far too much a risk IMO, and not a risk I'd be willing to take (nor would I ever suggest a customer or friend take the risk either).

Hope that's helpful!

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Thanks! All of that was very helpful.

A note about size: I currently have a 29 gal tank that is only 1 foot wide. The spacearium I am considering is the 5 foot long tank and it is 14 inches wide, so it would be even a little bigger than what I have now. I do agree that I have a lot to think about and research.

Have you heard of any other company doing ceiling mounted or similar type aquariums? Also, is there a local company you would recommend for me to work with if I was going to stick with the more traditional route of an in-wall aquarium? I'm not sure which companies are most reliable.

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A note about size: I currently have a 29 gal tank that is only 1 foot wide. The spacearium I am considering is the 5 foot long tank and it is 14 inches wide, so it would be even a little bigger than what I have now.

Hm, they might be a little bit different now (or perhaps a different company/brand than what was at MACNA many moons ago) - but when I saw them in person, the tank had a canoe-shape to it overall, almost. Like a double sided bowfront, that was narrower on both ends - but overall still a "tall & skinny" kind of design. When trying to design an aquascape that's viewable from both sides, while achieving varied heights & not touching any of the outer glass walls - it's a bit tricky. It could certainly be a case of using less than 1lb "per gallon" of aquarium volume, too - which isn't a bad thing either.

Have you heard of any other company doing ceiling mounted or similar type aquariums? Also, is there a local company you would recommend for the more traditional route of an in-wall aquarium?

I'm biased :( so I'll have to say River City Aquatics & Sea Clearly to purchase/delivery/installation. And regarding the purchase & installation of the Spacearium, you might give Kingfish a call to see if they've ever worked with installing or maintaining one for any of their customers. I don't believe anyone else in town has dealt with these tanks in the past, though I think my friends place in Houston has done a couple.

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I think that picture looks tahaaaackeey. Maybe it's just me but it looks like it's trying to hard just sitting still. It has that "I'm an aquarium, but I'm cooler than you" look going on. Maybe I'm a traditionalist in that I prefer a nice well adjusted aquarium sitting on a niece piece of furniture that is full of the finest in reef keeping equipment.

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Wow, the price alone would make me say no. Add in the risk of having it that high or being bumped and I think it's a bad idea. I love the look of it, but don't think it would be practical in the least.

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Yeah, the price alone has be scared away - but then again, when you think of how much we pay for a tank, stand and all the supplies - especially if I want one custom made to fit in the wall - the prices might just break even.

What do people think is the best option for installing an aquarium in a space about the same size as the one in the picture (except the ceiling is arched instead of rectangular)? I don't think there is room to put the cabinets underneath (on top of the shelf (nor do I think the shelf alone would support a tank) and still have a decent size aquarium on top. I'd rather not mess with the newly built wall . . . .

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What if you were to put a piece of furniture on either side of the shelf (a buffet or something similar) to use to house your equipment and support the weight of the tank. Not sure if you could find anything exactly the same height, but it would minimize the modifications you'd have to make to the wall, and might let you use a standard sized tank instead of having to have one custom built.

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Or you could build a stand over the wall. I'm envisioning A new piece of plywood over the top, extending about 6" out on each side. Then you could build a narrow cabinet underneath it in front of the wall for storage.

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I was thinking about this as an option, but I want to be able to hide all the equipment in a sump (or at least outside of the view from the main aquarium) and I don't think there is enough space to do that unless I mess with the pre-built wall. I'm also wondering if it would look funny to have black acrylic "boxes" on both ends of the tank to hide equipment? I've never had a sump before and the idea is a little scary.

Or you could build a stand over the wall. I'm envisioning A new piece of plywood over the top, extending about 6" out on each side. Then you could build a narrow cabinet underneath it in front of the wall for storage.

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