earthquake proofing a tank

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mattseattle

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being new to the northwest and being a new reef tanker i am curious what people have done to "earthquake proof" their tank. the only thing i can really think of is to get some strong straps and connect the stand to studs in the wall. any other ideas would be appreciated.
 

MnReefMan

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Jul 21, 2003
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theres earthquakes in the pnw?.... i wonder what else i havent found out yet
 

mattseattle

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heheh....well i think it would be hard to volcano proof our tanks so figured i'd just ask about earthquakes :)
 

Mushroom Boy

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Jun 27, 2003
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Only fill it half way up :D :oops: :D

I suppose you could strap it to the wall, but I think if there's going to be one that's large enough to do that kind of damage, we'll have other things to worry about. I guess it couldn't hurt, though. I'm interested to hear what others have done in preparation.

The last good one we had was about 2.5 years ago. It shook everything up really nicely. I lost some water out of the top of my tanks and also had the seam bust on a 29 gallon GLASS frag tank I had setup. That's why I'll always use acrylic while I live in the area :shock:.
 

mattseattle

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luckily my tank is acrylic and i'm planning to go to home depot and check out out strapping material. i figure 2 - 3 straps on each side should keep it from toppling during a minor earthquake. maybe that is overkill because like you said if it's major enough we are going to have to worry about other things than that.
 

MnReefMan

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Jul 21, 2003
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okay so there are seriously earthquakes up there..... my landlord never told me that..... funny lol
 

mattseattle

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yeah there are earthquakes. i haven't experienced one yet though. i have tried to earthquake proof my apartment somewhat. i strapped the bookcases to the studs in the walls and i didn't hang any pictures over my bed. stuff like that so that is why i was curious what other people have done with their tanks. i know alot of guys have their tanks built into walls and stuff but what about free standing tanks.
 

Gordo

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Jun 27, 2003
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Olympia, WA
I made my stand wider than the tank. I think strapping it to the studs in the wall would help as well. That's what you do to bookcases and such.

I live about 5 miles from the epicenter of the big earthquake that happened a couple of years ago. At first I thought is was a garbage truck because you could hear a loud rumbling but no shaking. Then the house started to shake and it just got worse and worse. I ran outside and you could see the streets rippling like waves on a pond. When it was all said and done the light hanging above my kitchen table was swinging about three feet in each direction. Luckily I hadn’t discovered this wonderful hobby yet so I didn't have to worry about tank damage.

~Gordo~
 

mattseattle

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Seattle, WA
wow....amazing how the ground can act like jello in such a situation.

does anyone glue or epoxy their live rock together? right now mine is just stacked since i'm cycling the tank. i would hate for the live rock to topple and kill everything.
 

Mushroom Boy

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Hey Clint, maybe you'll get out here just in time for "THE BIG ONE" :D ;) :(. Seriously, though, we do have them from time to time. Usually, they're small and only enough to get you excited about having felt one. The last one, though, was definitely a rumbler. I work in a building that was built on landfill right by Elliott Bay (i.e., prime disaster area built on mud basically :D). The building across the street from mine was built on rockers to help absorb the shock of a quake. It did its job, but man oh man you should have seen that thing rocking!!! I guess its safer, but everybody I talked to inside said they thought they were going into the bay. So, when do you arrive? :( :twisted: :shock:
 

Grouperdog

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Jul 1, 2003
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Issaquah, WA
I have most of my rock attached to each other using epoxy mostly because thats the only way I could keep it in place, but it probably is not a bad idea to do if you think some shaking could bring it down. As far as attaching the tank to the wall it seems like if the earthquake is strong enough to topple your tank that as mentioned before you will have bigger problems then that. For people who have tall and thin tanks where there is a higher center of gravity it might be something to think about, but it seems that most of our reef tanks do not fall into that category.
 

Wolfesbane

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Jul 24, 2003
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Auburn, WA
Being a ::gasp:: native Californian, I've done various things to try and earthquake proof tanks. While living in the Northridge area, I had an acrylic 60 gallon amazon tank and a glass 10 gallon marine FO tank. The 60 gal had a larger stand and was strapped to the wall twice. The 10 gal was on a 4'x6' counter against a wall. They both weathered earthquakes up to about 4.5 just fine, with just a bit of sloshing water. Unfortunately the big Northridge quake was quite a bit larger than that and neither tank survived despite the precautions. When things are shaking that hard, anything that isn't nailed down will bounce and the weight of the water in the tank pulling against the straps is pretty dang strong.

~ Steve
 

MnReefMan

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Jul 21, 2003
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Mushroom Boy said:
Hey Clint, maybe you'll get out here just in time for "THE BIG ONE" :D ;) :(. Seriously, though, we do have them from time to time. Usually, they're small and only enough to get you excited about having felt one. The last one, though, was definitely a rumbler. I work in a building that was built on landfill right by Elliott Bay (i.e., prime disaster area built on mud basically :D). The building across the street from mine was built on rockers to help absorb the shock of a quake. It did its job, but man oh man you should have seen that thing rocking!!! I guess its safer, but everybody I talked to inside said they thought they were going into the bay. So, when do you arrive? :( :twisted: :shock:
NOT SOON ENOUGH.......I should be out ther e by the 16-17 of sept
 

Alice

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Jul 18, 2003
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"Hail Mary, fulla grace; help us keep these tanks in place!" ;)

When the last big quake hit the Seattle area, I was living in Portland and we got a pretty good jolt, too. I called my babysitter/tanksitter to go look at the tank. A little bit of water had sloshed around but all of the rocks were still in place. That was a 55; now I have a 135 and with it being long and pretty low, I think it's going to take a substantial hit to topple it.

(Alice crossing her fingers and knocking on her head!)
 

MnReefMan

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Jul 21, 2003
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59
wow earthquakes...rain....and not a good sports team for hundreds of miles.....what have i done
 

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