Bath Tub Bait Tank

Discussion in 'Catfishing Library' started by arkrivercatman, Feb 26, 2008.

  1. arkrivercatman

    arkrivercatman New Member

    Messages:
    4,472
    State:
    KS
    Here is how i made a bait tank for storing live bait at home.I made it out of a bathtub that I got for free from my cousin who works at a plumbing supply store(it had a small chip in it).It will hold 65 to 70 gallons, has rounded sides and does a great job of keeping bait lively.

    I used treated 4x4 posts to make legs for the tub.I made them around 30" on the drain end and about 30 1/2" for the opposit end.This is so that any waste on the bottom will be drawn to the drain end. I attached the legs using self tapping screws.Once the legs were attached I added bracing all the way around to make it more stable.

    Now for the plumbing.The tub I got already had the drain installed.I bought an threaded reducer that fits on the bottom of the drain.I already had a thru hull 750gph bilge pump so I am using that for now.Any pump over 500gph should work fine.A pond pump that runs off the house current(110volt,AC)will work best.I screwed the pump into the adapter at the bottom of the drain.I like this feature because there is no pump in the tub and since it is below the tub it is gravity fed.That way there is always water in the pump and the chances are slim that it will overheat or burn up.

    Next I placed an adapter on the outflow side of the pump so that I could attach 1/2" pvc for the main line.I ran the pipe up the end of the tub and had it split both dirctions, one for the aerator and one for a current flow.

    For the lid I used a scrap piece of plywood, cut to fit.Test fit the plywood and then cut out a lid.I made mine pretty big so that no fish would be lucky enough to hide from me.I treated the wood with Thompsan's water sealer before installing it to the tub with self tapping screws around the rim.The lid is attached with hinges and a handle for easy opening.

    For aeration I made two spray bars out of the pvc.I used a "T" fitting with small pieces of pipe capped at both ends.I drilled a series of 1/8" holes along the length of the pipe.
    The spray bars come down through holes that I drilled into the plywood.They work really well, creating really fine bubbles.

    For the optional current in the tank I ran a piece of pipe down into the bottom of the tub so that it pushes the water along the side and around the tank. I installed a valve so that I can adjust the current as needed.Most of the time I have it all the way off so that the aerator pessure is higher but when I need a little current for shad or other delicate baitfish I have the option.

    As far as filtration goes, the best thing I have found so far is a piece of steel wool placed around the drain.It does a decent jobs of collecting scales and other solids.When I am storing a large amount of bait I will use additives to help control amonia and other harmful chemicals.It is imperitve that if using city tap water that you either let it sit for a few days or put some chemicals in it that will remove the chlorine.Every couple of days I will drain some water out, replace with fresh and check the filter.Draining is easy if you dont glue all of the fittings.Just disconnect and place a piece of hose on it and turn on the pump.

    The pictures may explain it better than I can with words.Another bonus of this setup is that it is at a comfortable height and you can store things underneath it.Optional items are a bigger pump,a timer for the pump and a better filter.

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