Fluval Flex 15 Conversion for Jellyfish and Stand Issues

New9742

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Hello all!

I'm new here and essentially completely new to the hobby. I have wanted a jellyfish tank for myself for a number of years now and have decided to pull the trigger so to speak; However I found the price of the available tanks/kits to be quite prohibitive and not exactly what I was looking for so I decided to build one myself. Hence why I have chosen the curved design of the Flex.

As this is my first real aquarium set up beyond a simple Beta tank (and a saltwater one at that), I have been doing a lot of research into this and have gotten everything I could need and am at the point I have obtained everything I think I will need for this to become a successful project, but I have ran into several problems with the build so far and finally decided I needed to come here for help.

Right now my biggest sticking point is setting up the stand so that it will safely support the Flex, and that is why I'm here asking now.

I purchased this folding shelf from Amazon which has a 250lb weight limit per shelf. By my math, when fully set up the tank shouldn't weigh more than about 200 lbs (15 gallons of water, about ~30 lbs for empty tank weight, misc accessories, and 20 lbs of live rock) so I'm well within the weight capabilities of the shelf. The problem is, the shelf isn't deep enough for all 4 edges of my tank to be supported by it. I purchased a piece of 3/4" thick plywood and cut it to the size of my tank's base to support the tank on the shelf, but I found out after that the plywood has about 1/16"-1/8" warp across it which means it's not making constant contact along all edges and the bottom of the tank (Though I bet the weight of a filled tank would eliminate that issue). Can I no longer use this piece of wood for my tank? Cost is an issue as this has been fairly expensive for me so far and I need to find ways to maximize my investments (though I will spend if it means my tank is set up properly and won't crack on me). Can I use a thicker piece of leveling foam to help in some way?

Any tips or advice would be great on how to make a base I can have faith in supporting my stand with. I can try to upload pictures if requested as well. Thanks in advance!

Shelf.jpg
 
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AydenLincoln

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You should not use that stand or that tank for jellyfish. I’d start with a fish only tank and/or a reef tank as it’s easier and jellyfish aren’t a great beginner pet to someone entering the hobby. Let me explain. There’s a reason why jellyfish tanks/kits exist. Jellyfish swim in an interesting way and have no eyes and because of this they need a sphere, circular tank, or modified tank with no edges just for them thus why manufacturers sell specific tanks just for them with low/cool temperatures, no powerheads/chambers or grates, and nothing they can get sucked into such as the overflow of the Fluval tank or anything else in the typical saltwater/freshwater tank. As for the stand you should not use it as it has wheels that can be moved and easily slide even if locked and because it’s a folding table the weight will be pushed against it overtime causing it to sag and possibly snap. Solid wood is the best option you can either make or buy a stand (not a metal one which can not be enforced the way you need it). Take away weight limits for any piece of furniture that is not solid wood or a tank stand especially for 15 gallons. The best way to maximize your investment and I’m sorry to burst your bubble but this hobby is very expensive….is to either return your tank and stand and start with a smaller tank like anything under 10 gallons…5 being even better if you are worried about weight as you can typically safely place them on a desk and/or look for used deals on used tanks. Or make your own stand for the tank with solid wood/buy a Fluval/aquarium stand and make it a saltwater tank with fish or a reef tank. I’d also like to note with a jellyfish tank you shouldn’t have anything in the water so no rock.
 
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New9742

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@AydenLincoln , thanks for your reply!

I didn't go into much detail with my initial post as I was mostly focused on just getting my tank on a stand for the moment, but this is very much a project for me and I'm already working on modifying the tank so that it meets the requirements for jellies you mentioned above (with some success with creating the necessary gyre so far as well). There is limited information, but if you're interested, the Flex has been used to create the Omni 8/9 aquarium for jellyfish, they're just modified as well in a different way than I am trying and some species of jellyfish are actually OK with sand (Upside-down Jellyfish for example).

Would you explain why a rolling stand is a no go? I'm not sure I understand as to why this is inherently bad. If it matters though, the wheels are optional and I'm not dead set on installing them.

Could you also better justify your statement about the weight of the tank pushing down on a folding design meant to withstand higher weight than I am putting on it and bending/snapping? If it's because it would be only in the middle of the shelf on "focus" the weight there, I could see that point. The shelf in total is ~27" wide and the tank is is ~16" so I wouldn't say the weight isn't being evenly distributed across it and I would just make another argument about laying 3/4" plywood across the length of the shelf (including where it attaches to the frame), but at the depth I need to fully hold the tank's front and rear edges may solve that.

If the folding stand is completely out of the question and I were to build a stand as you suggested, I may encounter the same problem I asked about above, the slight curve in the wood. Is any curve an automatic no-go, or is it ok if it is slight and the weight of the tank can flatten it out? Which way should I face the curve (edges up, or middle up)? Can thicker foam pads be used safely and if so do you have any specific suggestions?

I do appreciate you taking the time to help me!
-Best, New
 
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