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Cast Iron Fish

Cast Iron Fish Tank

Did you know that in the Victorian era, elaborate cast iron fish tanks were all the rage among the nobility?  I didn’t.  I assumed fish tanks, because of the glass, plastic, electricity, and silicone necessary were a relatively recent commodity.  I would be wrong.  Tropical Fish Magazine has a detailed write up on what went into designing and making these fascinating works of art.  The most ornate and sought after were those made by J.W. Fiske, an Ironworks company out of New York. Now a days, ornate fish tanks can fetch upwards of $15,000.  Which if, you ask me, is far, far too much to spend on a simple (freshwater only) fist tank.  Do you realize the amount of pond I could build with $15,000?  It would be insane.  You’d never get to look at it at eye level like this.  But if I could spend $15,000 on a pond, I would make sure to have some sort of underwater viewing.  Maybe a tunnel, or window underground.  Yea, that’s right.  A window to the sky underground…


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Fish Coffee

Tank, Table.

Fish Tank Coffee

Instructables user fellc has created this neat Coffee Table, with a fish tank in it.  You know I have a think for Coffee Tables, and for DIY projects, hell, even ace fish tanks.

He’s made a 6 step instructable detailing his process.  He’s using a 30 gallon tank that he already had, and spent about $350 on the materials building it, the most expensive item was the 2 foot by 4 foot by 3/8 inch thick glass top.  He says he’s using plate glass though, that could be a problem, tempered glass would be much better.

fish tank build

While it’s no house-sized aquarium, it’s still pretty ace, specifically because he built it all himself.

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Air Speed Velocity

The African Tigerfish, a real menacing looking fish,

Tiger Fish

knows the answer to the fabled question, and for the first time ever, has been caught on video leaping out of the water and gobbling the fast Migrant African Swallow.


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ZeroEdge Aquariums

We’ve featured a couple aquariums from time to time on the blog. Some were awesome, some were weird (even by my standards). And actually, the table aquariums inspired me to design my own that would be the future centerpiece of my living room, but that was during happier, more employed times. I might still revisit it later, but this is just beautiful and a really great design.


Now as I see it, there are a couple problems with this. There is no cover for the aquarium so you basically have to keep any cats far, far away from this. That might not be such a problem since the water flows over the edges of the tank and then gets recycled and theoretically cleaned I guess and put back in the tank. But again, since there’s no cover, I would be really worried about other stuff getting in there. Like dust or bugs or um…anything I regularly throw around my apartment. I guess in the end it wouldn’t really matter since most things would overflow with the water and get filtered out, but what if you have a fish that likes to jump? Nothing good happens, that’s for sure.

The really scary thing is that the website doesn’t tell you how expensive these things are, which leads me to believe I will never, ever be able to afford one. On completed kits, it just says to “Call for quote” which is never a good thing for a thrifty consumer. However, if you buy just a tank with a base (bring your own pump I guess) it ranges from $600 to $950 to infinity (which is, as far as I’m concerned, what  “Call for quote” means).

I found this on Make, and they seem to think that it would be easy to DIY, but I can’t help but think you would be way better off at least buying the tank from ZeroEdge. I mean, you could certainly buy an off the shelf tank and make a pump overflow it but anything you did yourself wouldn’t be nearly as elegant a solution as the real deal. If someone proves me wrong, I will buy it off you for whatever you want to charge me.

As long as it’s less than what ZeroEdge charges…for just a tank.


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Tables, Aquarium style

Here are some nice tables, I don’t know if I like them more then my LED table, but they are pretty interesting nonetheless.  Only question is how do you feed the fish?