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GARF EAST GREEN HOUSE PROJECT - PART 2
AQUARIUM STAND CONSTRUCTION

Reef Aquarium Farming News
Online Newsletter for Reef Aquarium Propagation Research

ISSUE # 23 page 3 DECEMBER 1998 - JANUARY 1999


GARF EAST GREEN HOUSE PROJECT

CONTINUED FROM PAGE ONE DECEMBER ISSUE PAGE 1

This series of articles is intended to teach you to think like a farmer. DO NOT try to copy it the way we made ours. Learn from what we do and remember to look for good deals when you are planning your systems. The plastic fork lift boxes we purchesed were seconds from a factory that makes boxes for the onion industry. We have seen the same types of boxes on the coast that are used in sea food industry. We found the Rubbermaid boxes at the Home Depot lumber store. This size box is used to store things under a bed.

The rack was made so that it can also hold travel boxes that are twice as deep. We used 2x4 lumber to make the box shaped stand. The sides of this box allow us stack two rows of tanks because they take up less space.

The large PVC pipes in the lowewr tanks are the siphons that keep the water level the same in all of tanks. We will be pumping water from the bottom tank that is in the front of the picture with a Little Giant MD2 pump. The valves will return the water from each of the upper tanks. We made the return lines from one and one half inch pipe so that they will be able to take higher flow rates if we to flush one tank. It is important that all over flows be as large as you can make them so they do stop the return water.

This picture shows the details of how we set up each tank. We sawed the center out of the plastic lids with the table saw. We will attach the lids to the tanks with several nylon bolts. We are going to use nylon wing nuts on each corner so we can remove the lids. The lids add support to the sides of the tanks. The lid will give us a lip around the edge of each tank to stop any snails from climbing out of the tank.

We will use two air releases in each tank to mix and move the water. We have been testing small airlifts made from PVC pipe and an elbow. These air lifts are placed in two corners and they get the water in the tanks moving very well. We may add an elbow to the incoming line that directs the water in the same direction.

One of the funnest things about setting up new systems is playing with the water flow. We have found that proper water flow is one of the most important things in getting cuttings to survive. When we use air lifts in salt water we do not use air stones.

We leave the air line longer than we need it so we can cut off one inch each time it clogs with calcium. The air line seems to clog only where the air touches the water at the end of the tube. By cutting a small piece of tubing off each month we have had less clogging than we did when we cleaned the inside of the tubes.

One of the things that we like about this type of box is that it is easy to stack them inside each other for shipping. This box has all of the fitting we used to set up the first three tanks. When we build a lab in a remote site we can ship all of the pieces we need in a small container.

We will be testing these boxes for the next several years to see how they hold up to UV light. The way we set this system up each tank can be changed without turning the system off. We will set up several of these tanks with a bed of gravel so we can use them for attaching cuttings. We often cut the polyps from Xenia and allow them attach to gravel before we glue them to Reef PlugsTM

The picture below shows the tanks after it was dark and the lights came on. We will adjust the lighting so that as much of the light as possible is being used by corals. This green house is between two buildings and it only gets direct sun for three hours. We grew hundreds of nice cuttings in the larger tanks this Summer with no extra lighting.

One of the things that is so exciting about corals farming research is that no one in Idaho has done any of the things that we are doing. The geothermal water that we use in this green house comes from a pipe line in the middle of Warm Springs Ave. Before we use it to heat the tanks it has already been used in a forced air furnace to heat the 5 bedroom Victorian house that we use for an office. After it passes through the house it then goes through four cast iron radiators to heat our large wet lab. We then run the water inside of the double walled fork lift tank. This one tank heats the water that flows through this entire system. The green house has no heater. The water keeps the inside of green house warm even when it is freezing outside. The cooled water is then used drip irrigate our Bamboo.

This heating is done by as much water as can flow through three aquarium airlines. We will soon be using the water outside to heat brine shrimp growout tanks. Many people do not know that GARF studies many other things and that reef research is just one of many uses we have found for the clean hot waste water that comes from hundreds of buildings in Boise.

USING WHAT YOU HAVE LOCALLY

When I started to build this system last week I had already purchased plexiglass to to make the tanks from. The tanks above the large rock holding sytem on the other wall of this green house are made from Plexiglass. I was at Home Depot lumber store when I found this new size of box. I decided to use this system to teach you how to make a low cost grow out system using common things you could purchase in your local store.

One of the problems you run into when you are using alternative methods to do propagation is plumbing. Many of the tanks we will be using this semester are too thin walled to drill and tap. During the last two years I have seen many storage boxes that would make great systems. The price is lower than ever before and the quality of the boxes is better.

We solved the plumbing problem by buying PVC fittings and putting them together with a washer we cut from 1/4" plastic. The finished pass through is strong and the best thing is it only costs about three dollars to make.

MATERIALS

1. one and one half inch male threaded PVC connector
2. one and one half inch female threaded PVC connector
3. O - ring
4. PVC pipe valve
5. NOT SHOWN - one washer cut from 1/4" plastic with same size hole
This washer was used as spacer, but you can use two O-rings

TOOLS

1. Drill
2. one and one half inch drill bit or hole saw

This view shows how the washer is used to make the wall stronger and to add space so the O-ring can seal the fitting. Be careful that you do not put the fittings together too tight before you use them. They can be almost impossible to take apart if you tighten them before you use them. If you do put one together you will need a vise and a pipe wrench to get it apart:)

We used a one inch PVC elbow to run the return line because it fit inside of the one and one half inch fitting. By doing it this way we were able able to have the tanks spaced closer together. With a one and one half inch elbow we would have a small piece of one and one half inch pipe between the two fittings. We did not want any extra space between the tanks because the lights will cover more than one tank.

This picture shows how close together we were able to put the tanks. These tanks are about 42" long and we use 72" VHO bulbs above them. We will overlap the bulbs so the middle tank has the most light.

The bottoms of these boxes are shaped into several arches so they are very strong. We were able to support them with only three pieces of 2x4 lumber under each tank. We are very interested in seeing pictures of any system that you build. This rack of tanks can be built for very little money. We will keep track of how many corals we produce during the first semester. Remember that in farming it is not how much you sell that makes a profit - IT IS HOW LITTLE YOU SPEND.

This system will have several things that will save time and energy during it's coral farming lifetime. This is the valve that will adjust the incoming water.

We are adding holding tanks above the system that will feed green water and rotifers automatically. The grow out tanks will be in the window on the north end of the greenhouse and a timer will add make up water each time we want the food to flow into the system. We will use filtered water from the system to grow the food. We can run a small line from the this system around the radiators and the water will be heated to 120 degrees before it is used for green water. This will kill any rotifers so that the cooled tank water can produce more algae.

We will also add a plastic mirror as a back splash so that any salt creep can be washed off with a hose. This mirror is made of plexiglass and we seal the back with clear spray acrylic to make it last much longer.

I will update this article as soon as we start changing things. The best way to learn how to do a large project is to test your plans on small project. We plan to make two more greenhouses before we construct the large one down the hill behind the wetland. This greenhouse is about 9 feet wide and 30 feet long.


AQUARIUM STAND CONSTRUCTION

This is a good stand for a reef aquarium

Geothermal Aquaculture Research Foundation, Inc

You can make this stand the size of any aquarium. We have made several of these and finished them in natural wood colors. You can also paint these stands with enamel paint so they will hold up in the wet lab. Please send us any pictures you can take while you are building your stand.

We have often used pine to make a simple stand that is very low cost. The stands we are making this semester are all made from 3/4 inch oak and they are turning out very well.

CONTENTS
MATERIAL LIST
ASSEMBLE STAND

135-GALLON AQUARIUM STAND CONSTRUCTION


PLEASE PRINT THIS PAGE FOR LATER USE


TANK IS A 1 PERSON PROJECT

Tools

MATERIAL LIST BACK TO INDEX Materials List
Each size of stand will need different amounts of these materials.

Two by four frame lumber
3/4" plywwod for stand top
1/4" finish plywood for stand

STEP # 1 - MEASURE AND DRAW YOUR AQUARIUM

CUTTING LIST

Fill in blanks by measuring your aquarium

TOP FRAME
2 - pieces 2" x 4" the lenght of tank + 1"
2 - ________" 2" x 4"

2 - pieces 2" x 4" the Width of tank minus the width of front and back frame boards
2 - ________" 2" x 4"

1 - piece 2" x 4" for each 18" of tank lenght for support
___ - pieces of 2" x 4" ______" long


BOTTOM FRAME 2 - pieces 2" x 4" the lenght of tank + 1"
2 - ________" 2" x 4"

2 - pieces 2" x 4" the Width of tank minus the width of front and back frame boards
2 - ________" 2" x 4"

1 - piece 2" x 4" for each 36" of tank lenght for support
___ - pieces of 2" x 4" ______" long


KICK FRAME 2 - pieces 2" x 4" the lenght of tank - 4"
2 - ________" 2" x 4"

2 - pieces 2" x 4" the Width of tank minus the width of front and back frame boards and minus 2"
2 - ________" 2" x 4"


FRAME BOARDS 4- pieces 2" x 4" the hieght of stand + 2 extra frame boards for each 18" of lenght
The stand in drawing uses 8 frame boards.

FINISH WOOD AND DOORS You can finish this stand with any type of plywood or you can leave it unfinished.


Work Area

A clean, dry work area is needed.
TANK ASSEMBLY  BACK TO INDEX

Aquarium Stand Construction Procedure

a. Inspect all pieces for rough or flawed edges. Sand as needed.
b. Lay out boards for top frame.
c. Screw the end boards and supports to front and back pieces
d. Lay out bords for bottom frame.
e. Screw the end boards and supports to front and back pieces
f. Lay out boards for kick frame.
g. Screw the end boards to front and back pieces
h. Screw the frame boards to bottom frame.
i. Screw the frame boards to the top frame.
j. Put the 3/4" plywood top on the stand.
k. Put on the kick frame.
Finish the stand with the type of finish you have purchased.

FUTURE HOME OF THE BOISE GEOTHERMAL PUBLIC RESEARCH AQUARIUM

The new Aquarium will be constructed in the same manner as a Chambered Nautilus grows. Each section will make the building larger, but the shape of the structure will be the same after each addition.

We are doing the research needed to build the first public aqaurium in the world that will be dedicated to the study of geothermal water and how it can be protected. Many of the nutrients and minerals needed for a healthy ocean come from geothermal sources. Geothermal springs both in the mountains of Idaho and in the deepest parts of the ocean may hold the cure for many diseases. Bacteria from geothermal springs are now being used in new medicines and in modern laboratory methods. The rapid cloning of DNA would not be possible if it were not for some bacteria from Yellow Stone Park.Every year thousands of geothermal springs are dried up because of poor irrigation practices.

GARF

This public aquarium will be the only aquarium in the world where you will be able to see cross sections of the many types of thermal springs. These displays will allow study of the habitats and the animals that live in these unique and secret places. Many of the endangered species will be able to be reproduced so they donot become extinct before we even have a chance to name them.

GARF

We are proud to announce that we are starting a new project that will allow us to teach at six public aquariums during the next 12 months. We will host weekend seminars on coral propagation and reef rock building. These seminars will be open to the aquarium keepers who work at other public aqauriums in each region. Garf will supply the host aquariums with several dozen free captive raised corals so they can build a display using aquacultured animals. If you work at a public aquarium and you think that this project might fit into your education program please feel free to call us toll free at 1-800-600-6163. There will be no cost for this series of seminars. We have started to data bank corals that many public aquariums have an excess of and we will help them trade these corals with other aquariums who need them and may have too many of some other species.

GARF IS TEACHING PUBLIC AQUARIUMS AROUND THE WORLD TO PROPAGATE CORALS.  WE WILL SOON BE STARTING OUR NEW PROJECT TO BRING THE PUBLIC RESEARCH AQUARIUM TO THE CITIZENS OF IDAHO

WETLAND RESEARCH

REEF PROPAGATION RESEARCH

GEOTHERMAL RESEARCH AND EDUCATION

More later - LeRoy


INDEX OF OUR RESEARCH
ALGAE CONTROL CENTRAL
REEF JANITORS ALGAE CONTROL CENTRAL

Use this site to solve your reef aquarium algae problems, and help support our research!!!

Learn how you can grow a wonderful reef aquarium like the one we visit in this JULY 1997 special feature Learn to set up your own fantastic reef aquarium like
Sally Jo's

You can learn how a reef aquarium grows into a mature sps coral reef
Sally Jo's 55 gallon reef is starting to mature into a small polyp stony coral aquarium

We will add more about this aquarium each month

JOIN THE RESEARCH FOUNDATION

You can support our research and learn more about reef aquariums and wetlands

1997 WINTER - SPRING NEWSLETTER Our foundation is growing - Please visit our Newsletter

REEF AQUARIUM FARMING NEWS

Newest information on reef aquarium farming

CORALLINE ALGAE PROPAGATION

Learn to grow coralline algae on your reef aquarium live rocks


COMBINATION ROCK PROPAGATION

Learn to grow combination reef aquarium live rocks

COMBINATION ROCK BASE ROCK SELECTION

Learn about base rock for combination reef aquarium live rocks

COMBINATION ROCK SPECIES SELECTION

Learn about selecting species for combination reef aquarium live rocks

LOW COST BULLET PROOF REEF AQUARIUM

Learn to start an inexpensive reef aquarium

55 GALLON INSTA REEF
Visit Rachel's 12 week old Bullet Proof Reef Aquarium

MORE PICTURES OF THIS REEF AQUARIUM

Geothermal Aquaculture Research Foundation,Inc. online tour

Learn why we call it Geothermal

Super glue research page

We teach you the Super Glue method of invertebrate propagation

Super Glue evaluation page

Our researchers rate many brands of super glue

Geothermal Aquaculture Research Foundation Feed Back page

E-mail input so we can make these pages better

Natural Algae Control

Reef Janitor Order Page - red leg hermits, snails, grunge.

THIS IS WHAT OUR HAPPY REEF JANITOR CUSTOMERS SAY ABOUT THEIR NEW JANITORS AND OUR SERVICE

Research page for Xenia and related soft coral propagation

Learn to propagate xenia. Please enter any data you have about these corals.

Soft Coral Propagation Page

Pictures and details of soft coral propagation

Stony Coral Propagation Page

Pictures and details of small polyp stony corals

Mushroom Anemone Propagation Page

Pictures and details of mushroom propagation

Zoanthid and palythoa Anemone Propagation Page

Pictures and details of Sea mat propagation

Image Page for Zoanthids and Palythoa

Learn to construct a 140 gallon plywood and epoxy reef tank

This is one of our most popular pages. Many people have made their own reef aquarium. >

WETLANDS SAVE THE WORLDS REEFS FROM ALGAE DESTRUCTION

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