120 Tank - in-wall or nah?

E.intheC

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Short version: basement fish room being built. 120 gallon tank. SPS dominant

Option A: in-wall tank
Option B: same tank but not in-wall. Sump and equipment still in the fish room.

I like the idea of the in-wall tank, and the clean look for the rest of the room. The only down side is placing corals and aquascaping will be more difficult because I can’t see the front. I don’t really like the idea of an access panel because I want everything to look clean.

what would you do in my situation?
 
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JoshH

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I think it depends on what look you're going for. In walls can be nice but so can having multiple views of your reef.

In walls can leave more room in your viewing room for furniture and things as well... I would lay them both out with tape or something similar and see how each might impact the room it's going in then go from there.
 

90's reefer

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Have you thought of a peninsula? 3 sided viewing pleasure. Plus twice as many corals if you do a center island scape style. Wish I would have done my corner overflow 120 peninsula style. Just a thought.
This is a side view of my 120. Would have been awesome peninsula style.
Just took this pic.
20200118_165225.jpg
 
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NanoDJS

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Every single person I have ever met with a in wall tank has a list of reasons why never again. I have ran a 4'x2' peninsula for 4 years now and would never setup any other style tank again. Ease of access , look, 10' of coral viewing in a 4 foot space is like having 2 more fishtanks in the same room. I also would never do a tank over 20" tall ever again.The topdown veiw is insane . I am a very hands on reefer and run a working tank ( fragging ) Its very frustrating (and damaging )to see some emergency happen and not be able to just roll up a sleeve and fix it ( coral war , knocked over frags, ect ) I wish you great success with whatever you wind up doing .
 

Eight

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I had a 180G in wall many years ago. While I loved the clean look, I missed being able to see the other sides of the tank. The tank looked and felt like a television or painting, but for me that made it feel less like an aquarium with living things. I especially missed being able to look down into the tank from the top.

If I were to do a big tank again I would go for a corner or peninsula build. In terms of front access, I cut in an access panel which was really helpful. Here are a few old photos:

P1000615-1.jpg


P1000554-F.jpg


P1000551-F.jpg
 
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E.intheC

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A peninsula would be great, but it wouldn’t work with the layout of my basement. I’m actually leaning toward a FOWLR for the 120 and keeping my smaller tank for corals
 
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E.intheC

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I think I may be able to run a peninsula actually o_O
Same question as above- anything you would do differently on a peninsula?
 

Skynyrd Fish

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I have a in wall with access panel. I would highly recommend 30” front to back or more. I have no issues looking at the sides, however I would like to be able to look through the back also, so maybe a removable screen on the back so people can’t see through into the fish room.
 

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