Paludarium 2.0: Ordering glass

Just as Paludarium 1.0, I decided to once again not build the glass tank myself, but have this pre-built. In order to be able to get what I want, I needed a technical drawing of the glass tank.

General sizing

General sizing was quite straightforward. I want to reuse my old paludarium lighting hood, so the top measures should be the same as the old one: 100cm wide and 60cm deep. The current height of the paludarium is 100cm (divided in 30cm water, 70cm land). I found the 30cm of water to be somewhat too low, and really want a water height of 50cm. That would bring the Plaudarium to a total glass height of 50+70 = 120cm. Quite a construction!

Front view

First I drew up the front view. Including total height, water height, the height of the divider for both water sections, and the three drilling holes above the waterlines to input and output the external filter water, and input the fresh tap water:

Glass design front view of the paludarium 2.0. Note: Holes are drilled in the REAR glass

Some of the sizings are left out here, but I’ve included those in the other views.

Top View

Up next was the top view. In the top view I wanted to especially show the glass divider between the two water sections, and also the drillhole required to dump excess water into the sewer system:

Glass design top view of the paludarium 2.0. Note: Hole is drilled in the BOTTOM glass

The ventilation in the front of the paludarium is also shown here. More details on the ventilation system is drawn into the sideview of the paludarium.

Side View

The side view is the third and final view of the paludarium. This view highlights the ventilation system and the glass divider:

Glass design side view of the paludarium 2.0

I drew both the waterlines in here as well. Also apparent is the ventilation: One strip on the glass ceiling, one strip in the front just under the sliding doors.

Thickness of the glass used

I find this particularly hard to determine: Looking at the water segment, you could calculate the glass thickness from online tools like the Calculate Aquarium Glass Thickness Tool. If I input the values for my water segment (100x60x50) with a minimized safety factor of 2.5 (reason below!), I would require glass thickness of at least 7mm. This seems acceptable for a paludarium of these sizes.

So why did I lower the risk factor from the accepted 3.8 to 2.5? The reason is, that in a paludarium the glass does not stop at the “top of the tank”: sides and back go on upwards and build a much bigger cubic form, which releases a lot of pressure you would normally have in the glass at the surface of an aquarium. Furthermore, the front has a cubic-like shape built around the ventilation system, which greatly enhances the strength of the front glass as well.

Glass thickness of the glass divider is even less critical, because water will always exist at both sides of the divider. To make things less complicated, I could easily glue a small strut inbetween the back and the glass divider to strengthen things even more.

I have decided to leave glass thickness out of the drawings altogether. Because I have the paludarium built by professionals, I expect they will be able to decide based on their expertise.


All three views are included in the following PDF file. Most things are specified, except the thickness of the glass as described above. For those interested, the PDF can be downloaded here.

One Response to Paludarium 2.0: Ordering glass

  1. Pingback: Paludarium 2.0 definite glass specs | The PaluWeb Blog

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