Jump to content

BossAquaria Shrimp Lab :)


Recommended Posts

  • Replies 271
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • Dean


  • Squiggle


  • ninja


  • ineke


Happy me :o. Now that you have stated this, i can have a good night sleep ;)

Good Night,


Link to comment
Share on other sites

its just a reminder so i see it every time im here and hopefully motivates me :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hello to you all,

I thought I would share with you all one of my latest projects i have been working on in my spare time.

I hope you all find this thread interesting and useful.

So I have decided that after spending the last 3-4 years buying shrimp from many many people and spending ridicules amounts of money on the promise of premium quality shrimp, only to be disappointed! that it is time to take matters into my own hands and start a selective

breeding program of my own, to try and obtain the perfect shrimp

my current setup has only really allowed me to breed numbers and not quality, hence the need to setup this better system.

The room has been built with every possible precaution taken to ensure nothing can go wrong. (touch wood)

so ill start with the room, tanks and equipment specs.

* Room Size internal dimensions - 4.8 x 3.6 x 2.4 meters. (Length x Width x Height)

* Floor- insulated, waterproofed and tiled.

* Walls -​75mm thick refrigeration cool room panels (Thermal Performance (Properties at 6oC) ‘U’ Value (W/m²K) = 0.51, ‘R’ Value (m²K/W)=1.92)

*Tank Stands -Custom build pallet racking system. Built to fit wall to wall, for "shrimp tanks" with a weight load rating of 1200kg per shelve. (a little over kill but for good reason, later explained) and standard long span shelving for the plant grow out tank system with a weight load rating of about 300kg per shelve.

*shrimp tanks - all custom built to suit racking system modules. 12 large tanks in total.

12 tanks @ 2200 x 450 x 400.

8 of those are divided with 4 equal sections per tank.

and the other 4 are divided in 2 equal sections per tank.

Total individual tanks is 40

*Plant tanks - all custom built to suit racking system modules. 4 large tanks in total.

4 tanks @ 2130 x 450 x 260

* Sumps - all custom built to give maximum volume of water to system to maintain long-term stability and maximum filtration capabilities.

4x Shrimp tank sumps 2200 x 350 x 260 with multiple dividers creating a tear system.

1x plant system sump 2100 x 500 x 400 with multiple dividers creating a tear system.

total sump tank is 5

* Equipment

1 x 2.5KW reverse cycle split system air conditioner

1 x HG-370 Air Blower * 800 litres pr minute *


1 x EHEIM COMPACT PLUS 3000ltr/h

12 x 6ft twin T5Ho lights (10000k)

54x duel sponge filters

1 x 100meter roll airline

And to many plumbing fittings, lengths of conduit to count.

so this is the room after all the walls and roof were built. Waterproofed the floor and added the lights.


and tiled the floor.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
A soft bump to this thread for Dean ;):p

haha +1 for this.... and wait for the site visits to climb!

edit - dammit i squandered my 100th post on this ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i was hoping you would all forget about this thread lol.

ok ill try to make time tonight to do a big update. :sorrow:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

waiting ,waiting,Waiting love the suspence!!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I put in the airline system that you can see around the top of the room above the racks. 40mm pressure pipe

in a continues loop around the ceiling, that i can attach airlines to later.

this is what the huge air pump was for.

While the racking system was being made i started the task of plumbing in the return lines.


they go to the sumps which are in an enclosed, insulated sub-floor to keep them clean and temp controlled

whilst giving me maximum space for tanks in the room.

The black boards are marine ply, water resistant and nice and smooth so i can just slide under when needed.

All 4 sump @ 2200 long are in this space with room either side for me to clean and adjust things.

Its a tight squeeze.


and this is the holes I drilled through the tanks for the bulkheads. 6mm double base tanks. Not the easiest to drill.

40 holes drilled in about 3 days. no record but also not one breakage.


Only downside to double base tanks is the mess that gets trapped between the glass when you drill them.


The New custom built Racks arrived

So the new rack arrived and I started building.

There is no way these babies will have any strength issues. Strength rating of 1200kg per shelf.

Another thing i realized while assembling the new racks was that i may have a problem with point loading! While the floor was built with a weight load of 800Kg/M2. The weight from the racks was not spread evenly, so i decided to double up the timber uprights under the floor where the legs of the racks will stand, just to be safe.

There is approximately 2500-3000Kg of weight (tanks, water, substrate, and racks) on each side of the room.


i cut all the foam bases and started to add the tanks!

foam sheets come in 2440 x 1220 x10mm then i cut them to size.

this is the tanks going in smiley.gif



and i started to lay out the plumbing fittings



Link to comment
Share on other sites

so now all the tanks are in on one side of the room and its time for the plumbing to start. this was my first time doing any plumbing on this scale. i learnt a lot of things about plumbing up large systems mostly through trial and error

so this is the list of what i used that i can remember, some things i cant remember the name of.

PVC pressure pipe & fittings

8x Cross 25mm

50x 25mm Bulk Heads

50x Tee 25mm X 25mm X 15mm

15x Tee 25mm X 25mm X 25mm

50x Tee 40mm X 40mm X 25mm

15x Tee 40mm X 40mm X 40mm

50x 45º Elbow 15mm

25x 45º Elbow 40mm

20x Cap 25mm

20x Cap 40mm

50x Valve Socket 25mm

50x Faucet Socket 25mm

50x Ball Valve Slip 15mm

22x Ball Valve Slip 25mm

45x 50/25 reducers

15x 25mm slip joiners

4x 6meter lengths 15mm pressure pipe

15x 6meter lengths 25mm pressure pipe

9x 6meter lengths 40mm pressure pipe

2x pressure pipe glue bottles.

10x rolls Teflon tape

Airline/irrigation fittings

200 x 4MM Barb x Threaded Adaptor

200x 4mm Barbed Vari-Flow Valve

100meters of 6mm airline

6x whoops plugs (thats what i call them)

they are little plugs you push into the pipe when you mess up the threaded whole for the barb threaded adapters. (what your airline connects to)

its not the easiest thing to drill a 3.5mm threaded hole in pipe that is only 2-3mm thick.

so this is the start of the plumbing.


everything was measured twice and cut once

all the bulk heads had 60mm of the threaded rod end cut off so that when the fittings and reducer tee was fitted it had minimal hang distance down from the tank above. the spacing between the top of the tanks and the above row was already minimal to maximize the space i had.

All the fittings were joined "without" glue until the complete system was plumbed in. Then when i was certain everything was right and would work, i labelled/ numbered every piece, pulled it all apart and started to glue everything together in modules that would all connect together in sections.

all the overflows in each tank were measured the same then glued into the fitting that screws to the bulk head. i then used the tape measure and measured the distance from the bottom of the tank to the top of the overflow pipe as i tightened it to the bulk head. this ensured all the tanks will fill to the same level when they are filled.


now i decided to add some black background to the tanks and do a test fill on one tank before i got to ahead of myself with all the plumbing and gluing.


happy days, i had no problems with the first tank so added background to the rest of the tanks and started a full system fill, very nerve racking. using the normal garden hose it took about 4-5hrs.



as this was the first fill and all the extra weight being added i was getting a little worried when the floor was settling and moving to find its natural resting place. but nothing went wrong so it was a relief and also a little pat on the back to myself for not under engineering the floor.




so no leaks or problems with the first side of the room after a week of running. so i started the other side of the room.


everything was a lot easier the second time round with plumbing etc.


started to run out of room for all the fittings and tools so started using the stands

so i was about to put in the last tank and what do you know! i cracked it

always the last one, so i had to get a new one built. while i was waiting for that i used the time to start all the plumbing etc.


so after waiting for the new replacement tank for a while with nothing much to do i decided i may as well get the air conditioner installed.

no chillers needed

so the other side of the room is now finished. no more cracked tanks

this is what it looks like now.


i also decided to add a medicine cabinet instead of using shelving for all the foods and test kits.

it also keeps the mess out of sight.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

This how i stop the shrimp/shrimplets from

taking a ride to the sumps!

so there are 2 parts to this,

the first is the 50 - 25mm reducer


and the next part (shrimp guard) is something i stumbled on in the hardware when trying to solve this problem.


Now the mesh guard is actually 2mm wider than the reducer, I think it’s because the reducer is a pressure pipe fitting and the mesh guard (cant remember name) is a standard plumbing fitting. so what i had to do was use the 4 inch grinder and grind 2mm off from all the way around the mesh fitting to make it fit inside the reducer but without it being too loose and babies still being able to squeeze down the side. (about 15 minutes for each one) not pretty but effective.


so this is how the reducer sits at water level


and now with the guard fitted inside.


so a few more bits of info about how i did a few things.

after the room was complete and all the tanks filled and running with the air-conditioner on climate control mode, i started to notice that there was a lot of humidity in the room. I’m guessing this is because the water in the tanks is slightly cooler than the set room temp, so what i did was cut a hole in the floor directly below the Ac and fitted a small computer fan (well it looks like one but is actually for Hydroponics rooms) under the floor in the sump area. This has two purposes! Firstly to force nice clean cool air into the room and secondly to keep the sump room under the floor from becoming humid and getting mould growing everywhere.

so this is the whole in the floor. it has a fine mesh on it to stop insects coming in the room and most importantly stop the shrimp from leaving.


so the plumbing to the room is quite simple in its working, basically there is (for each side of the room) one main pipe that feeds the water and one that returns the water to the sumps.

the main line that feeds water to all the tanks is a vertical pipe running up the centre of the rack with a X (cross fitting) that splits up/down/left/right. on either side (left/right) there is a ball valve to control the flow of water to each level of tanks.

as the bottom level get more water pressure so ball vale needs to be restricted a little and the top level remains open.

then over each tank there is also another ball valve to control individual flow to each tank.


a lot of adjusting and fine tuning but very effective. this gives me the option of closing off any tank and running it separate from any other, then to add water or change water i just open the ball valve.

then the same principle for the sump plumbing, each tank has a overflow that feeds to a main line under all the levels of tanks and down to the sumps.


Now a little about the sumps. They are overkill x1000 but stability is the key to keeping shrimp!

So the first part of the sump is where all the water lands from the tanks above. This has approximately 20-30 kg of various types of media (balls and noodles)


This then passes through a very course filter pad in the baffle (behind timber sorry) into the next section which contains about 90 Bio House logs


It then passes through another baffle which contains the very fine white filter wool into the return pump area


Then on the main line that sends water up to the tanks i also have this split into two lines. one line is the main feed to tanks and the other is like a re-circulation line to keep about 20% - 40% of the total volume of water passing through the pump, continually circulating through the sump.


Now there is also a overflow system in place. This is something I learnt about the hard way! When the power goes out the water in the pipes all flows back to the sump and because everything in this room is built to its limit, that causes the water to fill the sump and overflow.

so what i did was drill a hole in the side of the sump just above the running water level and connected it to the spare sumps beside it


this way when there's a Power out or problem with the pump the water simply passes to the Spare sumps without spilling everywhere


Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is the planted system i have made to grow all the driftwood covered in mosses and other types of mini plants for the shrimp tanks.

These tanks are only shallow as there only purpose is to grow mosses and driftwood creations.

It also has its own sump system so i can also put shrimp in there

And here is the first 100 pieces of driftwood i purchased to start the driftwood creations. There is going to be many many many many hours tying mosses....


to be continued......

Link to comment
Share on other sites

and watch the member base grow....

thanks mate for the re-update ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Exciting Dean! Cant wait for further updates! Its good to know im getting shrimp from an amazing setup like this :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

we just have to get the word out to the good people :) so we can keep this forum a great place :applause:

and watch the member base grow....thanks mate for the re-update ;)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

the next update will take a few weeks as i need to write up everything again i think, i cant find the rest of my notes anywhere :stupid:your shrimp and everyone else's shrimp come from this setup. so rest assured they come from a happy place :)

Exciting Dean! Cant wait for further updates! Its good to know im getting shrimp from an amazing setup like this :)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

That's a very nice setup that inspired my small rack. Can't wait till I can get some nice shrimp from you mate

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As some of us have said before, I'd paid entry tickets to this rack room! Keep those updates coming Dean :applause:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

thanks for digging this up mate :mad: honestly i just dont have time at the moment to spend a few hrs writing up everything.

ill get to it eventually but just not soon :dejection:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Join Our Community!

    Register today, ask questions and share your shrimp and fish tank experiences with us!

  • Must Read SKF Articles

  • Posts

    • sdlTBfanUK
      I just watched the video again. With that tank I would take 1 of the sponges and put it in the left compartment (where he put the heater in the vid) and the heater can go in the middle section with the other sponge, so that would work well and be very simple and no extra costs or modification involved. The water level in the back drops either because the pump is set too fast (if it is adjustable) or mostlly just because the sponge directly behind the inlet slots is getting blocked. Somtimes just pressing the sponge insitu at the top will blow some of the gunk back into the tank, but you will probably need to take the sponge out weekly to clean it, though I imagine you would probably do weekly water change/maintenance anyway. The tank in the video is also quite good because the back is covered so that will help with reducing evaporation from the back working part, mine was open/uncovered at the back so evaporation was more of a problem. I freaked out when I saw the level drop in the back the first time, especially as I had a glass type heater in the back! If you only very rarely need a heater then you could just put that in the main part of the tank on those rare occasions to be safer? As you say, you have time to see if you even need a heater but I suspect you won't as indoors will be warmer than the outside temperature overnite, and I have seen vids on youtuube where some Australians keep Neocaridina shrimp outside all year with no heaters in huge tanks or even ponds, and I doubt there is anywhere in the world where the temperatures don't fluctuate between night and day so all creatures must be ok with that (within limits of coarse).  My problem last week was the same only opposite, overnite it dropped to about 13 degrees outside but inside overnite it rose to 28 because the sun had heated the roof etc all day, so I did lose a few shrimps then (but they are Caridina so not as adaptable or tough as cherry shrimp), only babys though strangely? Of coarse, it's your winter now, whereas it is our summer. Do you have A/C in the house for the summer, even Neocaridina won't survive much over 30? I only have a portable room one which requires a tube out of the window hense I couldn't leave it running overnight as it is a ground floor room!
    • DemonCat
      Thanks for the response and interest! I'm planning on ignoring everything about the filter media provided and will do my own thing. But yes, a simple idea to save shrimp is put the filter right next to the intake bit.. I hadn't thought about that and was already thinking about adding mesh... your idea is much better and straightforward.  In regards to heater, where we are in Australia it gets 40 degrees in summer, but we had -7 last week at night.. this morning was a much warmer -3! The heating in the office is a bit whack too... it seems to be boiling hot or freezing cold, so the heater is something i'll just play 'wait and see' with. I don't propose to stock for a while anyway so will have substantial time to monitor the temperature and see if/how/when a heater is needed.  I saw a short youtube video on the water level at the back.. I'm glad I watched it / you told me because if I went in without knowing I'd be freaking out the first time I noticed it. 
    • sdlTBfanUK
      I had a very similar tank to the petworx one and they are very clean to look at and easy to maintain, but obviously you are losing some volume/floor area for the shrimps to inhabit. You will probably need to work something out so the shrimp don't get through to the back area, especially babies (sponge behind the slots etc) - you may be able to just move part of the sponge to that compartment looking at this video:  I would only get a 25w heater, I learned my lesson when my 50w stuck on and cooked the shrimps in my 35L tank. 25w should be adequate as you have a much warmer climate, in fact do you really even need a heater? One drawback with this type of setup is that the level of water in the back can drop drastically when the sponge starts to get clogged, though this is mainly only a problem with the heater which may break in insuficient water, or the pump in really severe circumstances. You will need to clean the sponges at least weekly.  The level drop in the back can look quite alarming when you first see it happening.  The other makes may also have the same issues? I would have thought nearer $250 as it already has a light and pump, and if you don't need a heater? I tried the 'let the idea fade away', but it keeps returning???
    • sdlTBfanUK
      I am still thinking it is 50/50 at this stage and will see what happens after another month! Th parameters seem to be slowly getting there, when I tested a few days ago, PH 6.5, KH 0-1, GH 6-7, TDS 150. I have around 10 shrimp left (25 were put in a month ago) but we did have a few hot days which ran together last week which killed at least a few, tank water got to 28 overnight, got a/c during the day, but that requires having the window open for the exhaust hose when running so a bit risky to leave it running all night. I may invest in some specific cooling if this works out for longer with shrimps, but we don't get much hot weather in the UK usually? The remaining shrimp seem fine, swimming about and coming out when I add food. I tried shrimp lollies but they aren't bothered with those at all so they seem to be just a good way of gathering snails to remove and keep their numbers down. If most of the remaining shrimp survive another month I will likely try some more, and by then hopefully ALL the parameters will be good and within the acceptable range as only GH seems to be a bit off. If I didn't have the shrimps in the tank I would try another 50% water change, but for now I will just see what happens in the next month with regular weekly water changes and running/parameter testing etc.
    • DemonCat
      Looks very nice! Similar scope to what I'm looking to do so am snooping for inspiration!   After another few weeks, how is everyone going? 
  • Create New...