A while back, a friend gave me a 75 gallon aquarium, fluorescent light fixture, and a cannister filter. He also gave me a 10 gallon set up that I'll use as a quarantine tank. I then found a steel stand on Craigslist but determined it wasn't stable enough and I was worried about it racking with the weight of a tank and perhaps my fat belly up against it while cleaning algae and such.
Here is the steel stand that I bought for cheap:
I took the stand to a buddy of mine who hooked me up and made it much sturdier, adding bracing to the bottom along with nice flat feet instead of the ends of the tubular steel that might have dug into my floor tiles:
My plan is to use the cannister filter to also provide directional flow along with a power head. My vision is to create a stream tank with the flow moving from right to left. I don't want any equipment showing in the final tank, and want it to look as natural as possible, mimicking my local river to have an Upper Potomac River Biotope aquarium. My goal is to keep peaceful minnow and darter species.
As far as the rock or aquascaping goes, my vision is to create an undercut bank with the current flowing along the front of the tank, left to right past an undercut bank with roots (hiding equipment), with the flow toward the back of the tank flowing right to left along a stratified DIY fake rock wall, forming an eddy. I might include some stargrass in the tank eventually.
Species that I definitely want to keep eventually include fantail, rainbow, tessellated, and perhaps greenside darters, spotfin and/or satinfin shiners, rosyside dace, and rosyface shiners along with some longnose and blacknose dace. I will avoid keeping cutlips minnows, but other than that, if they're small and peaceful (and legal to keep), then I'll add a few more species if I can catch them.
Setbacks: I have most of the equipment, but still need a powerhead, so I'm almost set there. But, my well pump is on it's last legs. I can't have an aquarium this size without a good water supply, so financially, that is where my money needs to go first, but probably not until after the first of the year. Still, I hope to have the tank up and running and cycled soon.
Right before filling my tank, I'll add rock from the river and sand from a river or perhaps a tributary and cycle the tank fishless. I'll run the tank fallow until spring to kill off as many parasites that I can that my enter via the sand and rocks.
Anyway, that's the concept. I'll post about my aquascaping attempts and progress in the next post.