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40 Gallon- Putting it all together

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by Ghostie, Apr 7, 2013.

  1. Ghostie

    Ghostie Prolific Poster

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    Hey all!
    I am finally putting together a 40 gallon tank that I have had
    sitting around several years. I was originally going to set up a low-tech aquarium, but have decided on a lowish-light injected CO2 planted aquarium.

    What I have so far:

    40 gallon acrylic aquarium
    Coralife T5no 36" on top of aquarium
    5 bags of Onyx sand over mineralized soil with dolomite and potash
    Rena Filstar XP-M (this thing is bigger than I thought it would be, perhaps I went overboard?)
    Jager heater

    For plants I think I would like to do an assortment of crypts and with a few stem plants for select areas of the background. I have Malaysian drift wood that I will attach some java fern or anubias to.

    For dosing and fertilization I will be going with the standard EI with pressurized CO2. NYC water is quite soft, with 1-1.5 kh, 1-2 gh out of the tap.
    Water quality report: http://www.nyc.gov/html/dep/pdf/wsstate11.pdf . I am not sure about the Onyx with pressurized CO2 as it add slight buffering, any comments?

    I have yet to buy the CO2 regulator and assorted bits, I am unsure what I will be purchasing yet. I was considering the GLA Atomic CO2 regulator v3, I like that it is small and doesn't have eotd and is a little cheaper than 2 stage regulators.

    Any comments, ideas, criticisms would be welcome! I will post some pictures as it moves further along.

    Thanks!
    Rafael
     
  2. BellinghamFish

    BellinghamFish Prolific Poster

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    sounds like a plan I have a 29 gal with a foreground of crypt wentii and back ground of java fern attached to lava rocks it looks great and is no maintenance other then the occasional crypt melt. How many t5nos do you have? Im running 2 a 6700k and a roseate bulb plants grow at an acceptable rate but I'm not using co2 other than excel. I think the plants will do great with injected co2 and EI. I live in NW Washington state and water is very soft here too, it seems ok. And on the regulator and tank I would buy the largest tank you can fit with a dual stage regulator, just yesterday I tried to fiddle with my co2 on my high-light tank and ended up killing a pleco I had for over a year... Definitely buy the best, most consistent and easily adjustable co2 system you can it. If not you'll do it twice like me. Also I think the XP-M will be great I've yet to see anyone really complain about too much filtration especially with plants, you can always get lily pipes, it really slows down the flow and makes it "torquey" and creates gyre haha. I don't have the most experience but I read a lot so I hope this helps you.

    Jeff
     
  3. Ghostie

    Ghostie Prolific Poster

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    Thanks for the reply BellinghamFish. I definitely don't want to be messing with a substandard regulator(but I don't know about spending $300!) I don't really have the time or will to assemble my own dual stage regulator. On the other hand, some of my fish for many years and if I killed them I would feel very guilty.

    Actually, I was wrong in the first post, I have the Rena XP-L.
    ~Rafael
     
  4. BellinghamFish

    BellinghamFish Prolific Poster

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    I would be even happier with a XP-L and do some looking on the BST forum maybe a nice used setup will come up because it really is terrible to kill fish. =[ if the flow is too much just remove the spray bar or drill the holes bigger
     
  5. SuomaSaariaho

    SuomaSaariaho Junior Poster

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    thats not a bad idea i think the thing you did here would definitly work well......
     
    #5 SuomaSaariaho, Apr 13, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: May 17, 2013
  6. Ghostie

    Ghostie Prolific Poster

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    Thanks! I ended up buying a dual stage regulator from oldpunk. I hate dealing with cheap equipment, and I would prefer to buy only once....
    Now I just need to buy some rocks for the hardscape and some plants! I will post some pictures when things get set-up.
     
  7. BellinghamFish

    BellinghamFish Prolific Poster

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    Sounds like a plan you should have a solid set up. What plants are you thinking and any theme?
     
  8. Ghostie

    Ghostie Prolific Poster

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    Not sure on a theme yet. The aquarium will be visible on both sides. Maybe an island or arch using some driftwood/ I have to do some more research some ideas. I have my new dual-stage regulator and 5lb CO2 bottle. I just need to find some nice rocks... Then order some plants!
     
  9. BellinghamFish

    BellinghamFish Prolific Poster

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    Man I'd be stoked! Are you going for lots of color or mostly green plants? Looking to do any ground cover plants, and are you going to do rocks or wood?
     
  10. Ghostie

    Ghostie Prolific Poster

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    I bought some nice driftwood locally, I think I will also pick up some bits of petrified wood. For plants, I am thinking of glosso and dwarf hairgrass for foreground and midground for the wide open are on the left. A few crypts and some fine leaved stem plants will go on the right

    [attachment=1487:name]

    For fertilization I will start with basic EI dosing. I am not so good at testing, so I would like to keep it easy.

    aquarium.jpg
     
  11. Ghostie

    Ghostie Prolific Poster

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    Plants are ordered and will be here Thursday:

    Baby Tears , Dwarf (Hemianthus callitrichoides)
    Glossostigma (Glossostigma elatinoides)
    Hairgrass, Dwarf (Eleocharis acicularis)
    Heteranthera Stargrass (Heteranthera zosterfolia)
    Hygrophila Pinnatifida
    Cryptocoryne, wendtii 'Florida Sunset'
    Limnophila hippuroides
    Rotala Wallichii
    Vesicularia montagnei 'Christmas moss'

    Also here is a picture of the dual stage regulator taken by oldpunk.

    aaaaregulator.jpg
     
  12. BellinghamFish

    BellinghamFish Prolific Poster

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    Pretty good selection who did you get the christmas moss from? I've been looking for some for my shrimp tank. One thing i noticed what type of co2 injection are you going to do? diffuser reactor etc?
     
  13. Ghostie

    Ghostie Prolific Poster

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    I ordered the plants from aquariumplants.com. I'll let you know how they arrive. For the diffuser I have several to play with, both on the cheap side. An UP Aqua cheap sintered glass one and a high pressure super diffuser from GLA. I may end up going inline in the future...
     
  14. thegasman

    thegasman Subscriber

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    Before I went with a reactor, I used the GLA. Works well. I just couldn't stand the 7-UP look in the tank.
     
  15. Ghostie

    Ghostie Prolific Poster

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    Hooked up the co2 yesterday and tested to see that everything is working.
    Plants arrive today. Here is the updated hardscape.
    [attachment=1496:name]

    IMG_20130502_100530.jpg
     
  16. Ghostie

    Ghostie Prolific Poster

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    Did all the planting yesterday. It went pretty smoothly.
    Stats as of today:
    dKH 3
    Ph 6.6 @one bubble a second.
    I will up the bubble count a bit to get the proper co2 concentration.

    I don't quite like the rocks in the middle and the left, but I am going to wait for the plants to grow in a bit while I think about what to do with them.
    Do you guys start dosing right away? How many water changes should I be doing(besides the weekly standard 50%.)

    planted aquarium.jpg
     
  17. thegasman

    thegasman Subscriber

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    Yup. Turn that co2 up a bit. Since you have no fish, I'd start high and then dial it DOWN to a fish safe level. Your substrate seems rich so you can probably hold off on dosing ferts for a couple of weeks. Others may be able to offer better info on this. As for water changes during this start up time...the more the better! I would do at least 50% every other day for the first week or two and then maybe 50% a couple times a week for the next two weeks or so. By then you should be okay to go to 50% per week.
     
  18. Ghostie

    Ghostie Prolific Poster

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    OK! I'll go ahead and crank up the co2 a bit.
     
  19. Ghostie

    Ghostie Prolific Poster

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    Stats as of today:
    dKH 3
    Ph 6.4ish @ 1.5 bubbles a second. So that gives me about 36ppm while the light is on. I also started dosing EI, and will be doing 50% water change twice a week.
     
  20. BellinghamFish

    BellinghamFish Prolific Poster

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    Looks good post pics of the plants exploding with growth :)
     
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