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Go Back   Tropical Fish Forum . Net > General Aquarium Care > DIY (Do It Yourself)

DIY (Do It Yourself) Provide ideas for building your own equipment, tanks and decorations

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  #1  
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uncle's Avatar
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Townsville, Queensland, Australia
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Default Lowering water temperatures

Hi all,

As most of us know, at times we can experience hot and humid summer temperatures which can result in the loss of fish. To overcome this I have designed a diy heat extraction system that i've proved to work and is extremely low cost and very simple to make. The following design is for a 10 gallon tank and can be easily altered to suit smaller and much larger tanks without spending big money on chillers. The result is, the weather and water temp was 30 degrees C. I needed to lower this for breeding my bettas. Overnight the water temp dropped by 5 degrees C and during the day it dropped by 4 degrees C. Now the temperature can be fine tuned with your heater. So here goes ...

Tools and accessories: Drill and drill bit, marking pen, jigsaw, silicon, perspex lid (to fit your tank), 12volt computer fan/s (i used 2 x 80mm in this instance. Smaller and larger ones are available), computer power supply (can power up to 7 or 8 fans easily), 2 x 2.5mm crimping pins, crimping tool or pliers, wire cutters, sandpaper.

Firstly, get a piece of perspex sized and cut to fit the top of your tank. My piece cost me $4. I purchased 2 x 12v 80mm pc fans from my local computer shop for $17.50 each. I got a power supply out of an old pc i had lying around. With that said, you can probably get all of these from your recycling centre for next to nothing.

Next you need to mark out and cut the holes in your perspex to draw the air upwards so put the fans on a bench or table and lay your perspex on top. Now position the fans where you'd like and with your marking pen, mark out a circle for each fan. These needs to be no larger than the fan diameter itself. Now to the work bench ... drill a hole within the circles just drawn. These need to be big enough to get your hacksaw blade in. Now put your jigsaw in the hole just drilled and cut out the full circles. After this, sandpaper the edges to smooth out and remove any loose hanging perspex.

Now, with your fans on the table, put some silicon on each corner of the fan surround. Make sure the fan is the right way around or the fan will blow air into your tank. Normally the label on the fan will be the blow side not the suck side. Carefully position the perspex on the fans to ensure they all line up. I then put some heavy tins of dog food on top to push the persex on the fans to ensure a good adhesion.

After your silicon is dry it can be now wired up to your pc power supply. On the fan wires, join the two red wires together, then join the other two together. Crimp on a 2.5mm crimping pin to each one.

If your pc power supply has a 20 pin connector, you put the red wires on your fans into the purple wire on the connector. You put the other wires into the black wires on the connector (there are many of these black wires but any 1 of them will work).

Now place the lid on your tank with fans on the upperside, plug in the power supply, turn it on, and watch the temperature drop over the next 6-12 hours.

Hope this helps .

Does anyone think Tim should show me some lovin' for this one?

Cheers
Ian
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__________________
55gal community tank
2 x Green Terrors, 2 x Jack Dempsey, 2 x Electric Yellow,
1 x Synspilium, 3 x Pleco, 1 x Convict

20gal breeding tank
Female Black Convict
Hundreds of fry

10gal breeding tank
Male Crowntail Betta
Lots of fry

10gal
3 x Guppies, 1 x Swordtail

2 x female bettas and 1 x male in their own containers.
  #2  
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Aquaman#1 Aquaman#1 is offline
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Warner Robins Georgia
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Default Re: Lowering water temperatures

Well I have to agree that it is very helpful!
  #3  
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Goose Creek SC USA
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Default Re: Lowering water temperatures

When you say perspex, is it same or similar to plexiglass? I've used plexiglass for many aquarium jobs, but I have found that the 1/4 in. (6.4mm) thick will bow quite a bit in large pieces.
  #4  
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Location: Victoria, B.C
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Default Re: Lowering water temperatures

thanks for the info. you should pattent that.

josh
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  #5  
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Location: Townsville, Queensland, Australia
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Default Re: Lowering water temperatures

Mmmmmm ... didn't think of patenting this idea. Looking into that right now!

Dano, i believe perspex is an acrylic type of plastic and i've heard of people making fish tanks out of it. PC fans are extremely light so you shouldn't have a weight problem. If you have a really big tank and 6.4mm bows, then you should be able to purchase larger thicknesses or simply glue 2 or 3 pieces together and there's the bowing problem taken care of.

Cheers

Ian
__________________
55gal community tank
2 x Green Terrors, 2 x Jack Dempsey, 2 x Electric Yellow,
1 x Synspilium, 3 x Pleco, 1 x Convict

20gal breeding tank
Female Black Convict
Hundreds of fry

10gal breeding tank
Male Crowntail Betta
Lots of fry

10gal
3 x Guppies, 1 x Swordtail

2 x female bettas and 1 x male in their own containers.
  #6  
Old ,
Dano's Avatar
Dano Dano is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Goose Creek SC USA
Posts: 1,892
Default Re: Lowering water temperatures

Ian...I made a lot of tank covers over the years with it and would glue a 1/2 in (12mm) strip across the center length to stop the bowing. I wonder if the patent for the fans is taken already. There are commercially built canopies for marine use with built in fans to dissipate the heat of metal hilide and vho lighting. You think you got heat problems, the hilide bulbs will bake potatoes.
  #7  
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uncle's Avatar
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Townsville, Queensland, Australia
Posts: 34
Default Re: Lowering water temperatures

I guess when you look at it like that, I don't really have a heat problem do I? Oh well, at least my fish won't die from excessive heat and I can get my fish to breed at the hottest time of year.

The main thing here was to share my idea and maybe others will benefit and not lose their fish during heatwaves.

Ian
__________________
55gal community tank
2 x Green Terrors, 2 x Jack Dempsey, 2 x Electric Yellow,
1 x Synspilium, 3 x Pleco, 1 x Convict

20gal breeding tank
Female Black Convict
Hundreds of fry

10gal breeding tank
Male Crowntail Betta
Lots of fry

10gal
3 x Guppies, 1 x Swordtail

2 x female bettas and 1 x male in their own containers.
  #8  
Old ,
Dano's Avatar
Dano Dano is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Goose Creek SC USA
Posts: 1,892
Default Re: Lowering water temperatures

Your idea and plans are outstanding. Anyone that uses you idea will definitely see heat reduction. Keep up the good work!

Dano
  #9  
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Sharon Sharon is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Newfoundland, Canada
Posts: 2,290
Default Re: Lowering water temperatures

Ingenous idea, Ian!!! Heat is not generally a problem for me, but there are times. I may have to try it this summer..........
__________________
Sharon

5 gal... Robin, (Betta)
5 gal...Pete, (Betta)
5 gal...Scotty(Betta)
10 gal...Female Betta Sororiety
10 gal... Neons, Glolights and Cardinals, 1 Oto
10 gal... Ram Pair
29 gal... Mbuna Tank
29 gal... Krib Pair, Tiger Barbs, Tetras, 2 Otos
55 gal...5 Australian Rainbows, 1 Angel Fish, 1 Blue Gourami, 6 Congo Tetras, 1 Leopard Ctenopoma, 1 Clown Pleco, 1 UpsideDown Catfish,5 Otos, 1 Bronze Cory, 2 Peppered Cories,2 Panda Cories
  #10  
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Dano Dano is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Goose Creek SC USA
Posts: 1,892
Default Re: Lowering water temperatures

Ian.......using the power supply from an old computer is brilliant. I have done many projects requiring 12 vd/c with low amp and either made or bought them. Think of how much you would have saved me if you had told me this sooner!!
 


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