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I was working on an 18 gals. tall tank today and once again I noticed that it bothers me if any of the decorations, especially the wood, touch the side or front glass.

Leaving some space, even small one, between the wood and the glass seems to create a better, more unrestricted feeling.

The look of the wood in this tank and also this one works, but I still prefer a look like this one in which the free space creates an illusion of a bigger space.

What do you think?

--Nikolay
 

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One practical reason not to put it too close is the maintenance problems it creates. Anything that draws attention to the limits of the water box will destroy the illusion most aquascapes try to create. None of the tanks you have referenced really seem to have this problem, IMO.
 

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From my personal tastes, tank 1 gives me a feeling of restraint, like the wood is pushing out against the sides of the glass, don't care for it. On tank 2, I don't care for the piece of wood on the right hand side which comes out at me, but I'd like to see a foreground with it. I guess the third is my favorite.
 

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I've had it work well in the past, but generally I do not care for it.
It does depend on the set up and look.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 
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