DIY Fish Tank "Shelf" for Inside of Tank

MissFishy

Superstar Fish
Aug 10, 2006
2,237
5
0
Michigan
#1
My 20H seemed to have a lot of extra room that the fish didn't even use since it was so high. My idea was to add a "shelf" to the inside of the tank so that there were two seperate swimming levels for the fish to explore. It really seems like the tank is a lot bigger since I've added it as the fish swim on seperate levels.

To make it, I found a piece of slate with a right angle (90 degrees) on it. Originally I had planned on propping it up on other rocks, but this tank just didn't have the room for the extra rocks, so I ended up buying a piece of rigid clear tube and some silicone glue (aquarium safe). I cut the tubing and glued three pieces onto the bottom of the slate. I let this dry for several days while reinforcing it with more glue. The end product looks pretty good if I do say so myself. :) Any questions are welcome!

Slate: $3.90
Tube: $1.75
Silicone Glue: $4.99
Total: $10.64
 

Attachments

Sep 6, 2006
739
0
16
St Louis
#8
Wow, that looks really really cool. Are you gonna just leave it bare, or add some sort of planting, or what? It looks like it's floating!

EDIT
Do you think it's possible to drill a hole in the slate right above the front left corner "leg" and then put an airstone inside it? Cuz that would look really cool... like the shelf was being held up by bubbles. Seriously. Look at the pic and imagine bubbles.

:)
 

Last edited:

TLH

Large Fish
Jun 27, 2005
703
1
0
Northants;England
#9
You can get drills to cut through stone or ceramics yes,although I wouldn't be surprised if they were expensive.Maybe you can take it to a glazier or kitchen builder/tiler and get them to drill it.Ask around.

I did the same shelf idea myself when I set my tank up for my Rainbow Shark.I just rested my piece of slate on 3 stones through as it only needs to be 1.5" high underneath to form a cave.It looks nice though with alot of Java fern growing above it.
 

MissFishy

Superstar Fish
Aug 10, 2006
2,237
5
0
Michigan
#10
You could theoretically just silicone the shelf to the tank itself, but I figured I might want to change the tank around one day so didn't do that. You could definately put bubbles in the tubing, that is a good idea, however, slate would be hard to drill a hole in since it is kind of a "flaky?" rock and would probably fall apart on you. You could definately do it with another type of rock though. I think I'm going to be putting some java moss on it draping over the sides...we'll see how it looks though, I'll update with pictures. You could also paint the tubes somehow to match the tank if you wanted to, but the clear ones really don't seem to be very noticable and I put some plants right in front of them, so it's not too bad right now. :)
 

Guysy1110

Large Fish
Oct 26, 2006
520
1
0
31
essex
#11
Drilling a hole through the slate would look cool, but i dont think a regular drill with a hole-saw woudl work because it would chip, flake and mite break.

i may have a try :D
 

Jun 5, 2012
2
0
0
#13
My 20H seemed to have a lot of extra room that the fish didn't even use since it was so high. My idea was to add a "shelf" to the inside of the tank so that there were two seperate swimming levels for the fish to explore. It really seems like the tank is a lot bigger since I've added it as the fish swim on seperate levels.

To make it, I found a piece of slate with a right angle (90 degrees) on it. Originally I had planned on propping it up on other rocks, but this tank just didn't have the room for the extra rocks, so I ended up buying a piece of rigid clear tube and some silicone glue (aquarium safe). I cut the tubing and glued three pieces onto the bottom of the slate. I let this dry for several days while reinforcing it with more glue. The end product looks pretty good if I do say so myself. :) Any questions are welcome!

Slate: $3.90
Tube: $1.75
Silicone Glue: $4.99
Total: $10.64
So this shelf idea is totally awesome, and I'm planning to do it myself. I have a great piece of rock, I'm just wondering where you got those tube legs for the shelf, I guess I'm worried about getting something not safe for my aquarium, plus I'd like it to be $1.75 cheap! :) Any suggestions where to look? Thanks!
 

Feb 27, 2009
4,395
0
36
#14
I'm just wondering where you got those tube legs for the shelf, I guess I'm worried about getting something not safe for my aquarium, plus I'd like it to be $1.75 cheap! :) Any suggestions where to look? Thanks!
They are available at most aquarium stores in different diameters, as well as home-improvement stores. My local stores have them where they sell the 'lifts' for the undergravel filters.
 

Jul 4, 2014
1
0
0
#16
I made a username just to see these pics! I think that someone with access to all the supplies except a proper drill for bubbling could achieve just as cool of results by making holes in the tube itself. Thanks for the awesome idea I think I will try it out for my first convict cichlid tank (2 females possibly adding one more female)

There is so many possibilities to that can be put inside of the tube it is making my head spin. If you had luck drilling you slate you could consider drilling out a larger hole on a different leg and running a plant through the tube and out the top of the slate. The possibilities are endless!
 

exhumed07

Superstar Fish
Apr 30, 2006
1,774
0
36
Illinois
#17
a simple masonry bit would work. I've drilled slate to hold drift wood down. just don't use a lot of pressure. also when drilling you will want to start drilling through on the top side. that way it's a clean hole thats visible, as the bottom side the slate might chip.