Drilling your aquarium from the sides?

Hamada

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So i have a 20 gallon long tank that i want to drill on 1 side to make a peninsula tank that would have a 10 gallon sump.
Now that being said i don't know how many holes i need, what size holes, and where to drill (top,middle,bottom).
I'm not sure if it is even possible to drill on the side panels of a 20 gallon long tank.
Some help on this would be great since this would be a new build that i would like to work on and document each step.
 
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Peace River

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So i have a 20 gallon long tank that i want to drill on 1 side to make a peninsula tank that would have a 10 gallon sump.
Now that being said i don't know how many holes i need, what size holes, and where to drill (top,middle,bottom).
I'm not sure if it is even possible to drill on the side panels of a 20 gallon long tank.
Some help on this would be great since this would be a new build that i would like to work on and document each step.
You should be okay to drill at least two holes in a 20L. Regardless of the tank or what I am told I try to always check to make sure that the panel I am drilling is not tempered glass (there are videos on youtube about how to use polarized sunglasses and a phone/computer to check). When drilling the biggest thing to remember is to go s-l-o-o-o-o-w (maybe even a little slower than that)!!! It is more like grinding the glass than drilling a hole in it.
 

lpsouth1978

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How many holes and where to place them depends on how you want to set it up. If it was my tank, I would use an Eshopps Eclipse S overflow. It comes with a template and drill bit. This would give you the overflow. Then just drill a hole for a 3/4" bulkhead and you have a return. paint the side black, and done. :)
 

Peace River

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How many holes and where to place them depends on how you want to set it up. If it was my tank, I would use an Eshopps Eclipse S overflow. It comes with a template and drill bit. This would give you the overflow. Then just drill a hole for a 3/4" bulkhead and you have a return. paint the side black, and done. :)
+1 All great recommendation!

@lpsouth1978 - I'm curious what you would recommend for the return including plumbing and nozzle? :)
 

lpsouth1978

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On my 40B I used 3/4" locline with an RFG nozzle. I am using a Jebao DCT-8000 (WAY overkill for this tank) for the return and just have black vinyl tubing going from the pump to a barbed fitting attached to the 3/4" bulkhead. I think this is a solid setup for most tanks, even much larger systems.
 
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Hamada

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How many holes and where to place them depends on how you want to set it up. If it was my tank, I would use an Eshopps Eclipse S overflow. It comes with a template and drill bit. This would give you the overflow. Then just drill a hole for a 3/4" bulkhead and you have a return. paint the side black, and done. :)

Well the thing is i don't want an overflow box.
I just want a hole to drain directly into a sock filter and a hole to go to the return pump.
Drilling wont be an issue i just don't know where to have the holes and how many. 1 for return pump and 2 for draining to a sock or 1 to drain to the sock?
As i mentioned i want to drill the side on the 20 gallon to make it into a peninsula tank.
I'm aiming for a very simple tank, the only equipment i want to use is Return pump,heater and a light (THATS IT)
 

Dr. Dendrostein

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So i have a 20 gallon long tank that i want to drill on 1 side to make a peninsula tank that would have a 10 gallon sump.
Now that being said i don't know how many holes i need, what size holes, and where to drill (top,middle,bottom).
I'm not sure if it is even possible to drill on the side panels of a 20 gallon long tank.
Some help on this would be great since this would be a new build that i would like to work on and document each step.
See youtube first, hardest part is starting the groove/cut . Here's my tank 46 gallon, 3 drains 1 inch piping. On your ,if mine one main drain 1 inch and a little higher 3/4 or 1 inch emergency drain.

Screenshot_2019-10-05-13-29-10-1.png
 

Dr. Dendrostein

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Well the thing is i don't want an overflow box.
I just want a hole to drain directly into a sock filter and a hole to go to the return pump.
Drilling wont be an issue i just don't know where to have the holes and how many. 1 for return pump and 2 for draining to a sock or 1 to drain to the sock?
As i mentioned i want to drill the side on the 20 gallon to make it into a peninsula tank.
I'm aiming for a very simple tank, the only equipment i want to use is Return pump,heater and a light (THATS IT)
Drill close to brim. If power goes out, tank will still be full.
 
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Hamada

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See youtube first, hardest part is starting the groove/cut . Here's my tank 46 gallon, 3 drains 1 inch piping. On your ,if mine one main drain 1 inch and a little higher 3/4 or 1 inch emergency drain.

Screenshot_2019-10-05-13-29-10-1.png
So looking at your tank you have all your holes next to each other but they are not leveled right?
What holes should be higher or lower? I like the idea of 3 holes 1 return and 2 drains now i need to know where to have them and how far apart from each other also the tank is kinda narrow would drilling 3 holes on 1 side stress out the glass or make it weaker?
I want to be able to sleep at night without worrying that the tank might crack due to stress from 3 holes on 1 side.

Thanks in advance, this is a lot of help!!
 

Dr. Dendrostein

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So looking at your tank you have all your holes next to each other but they are not leveled right?
What holes should be higher or lower? I like the idea of 3 holes 1 return and 2 drains now i need to know where to have them and how far apart from each other also the tank is kinda narrow would drilling 3 holes on 1 side stress out the glass or make it weaker?
I want to be able to sleep at night without worrying that the tank might crack due to stress from 3 holes on 1 side.

Thanks in advance, this is a lot of help!!
Two drains on one side the return opposite side facing drain pipes. As to weak tank. Can't help you there?
 

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A 20 long should have not a lot of pressure so I would not worry about weakness. As to 2 drains and a return on the same end, Peninsula style, I would have to recommend against that.. a 20 long has reasonably thin glass for the size.

a suggestion for overflow rather than using an actual box might be to cut a piece of PVC in a wedge shape. A 90° degree cut (which is actually a 45° on your PVC??) so you have a flat side you can glue onto the bulkhead and the other side along the surface of the water -- glue this to bulkhead --> Γ <--- top edge is at waterline. (tried to find a triangle but alas could only remember this alt code)

If you also glue a piece of screen to the top edge it will serve as a filter to prevent really big chunks of things from immediately clogging it..
 
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Hamada

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Thanks for everyone helping me out. After reading all this i was trying to go for a cheaper route and i just thought might aswel go for the better route (at least for me) i have decided to go for a 20gallon long all in one aquarium from Innovative marine.
Thanks again for all the help and making my decision easier.
 

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