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geektom's sanity tank

Discussion in 'Journals' started by geektom, Jul 16, 2017.

  1. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    Hi friends- well, it looks like the 150g project is going to be delayed for some time, so to keep myself sane, I will be creating a small tank.


    The tank is a standard 20g from Visio- nothing fancy.


    The goal of this tank is to keep a few fish, maybe some shrimp other than Amano (which would be a first for me), keep some stem plants that I have not kept before (which is most of them) and learn about E.I. dosing (I have never used a regimented fert schedule before)


    You can see in the pictures I am going with a very simple scape. I started DSM on the S. repens two weeks ago in anticipation of using them in the big tank, I will probably go another 2-3 weeks if I can be patient.


    The rocks are thin and leave me more space to plant behind them than you might expect looking from the front.


    Substrate is organic potting soil, then Fluorite, then capped with sand. I didn't plan on this being a display tank, which is why you can see the soil, but I will go back in and fix that.


    I will be using a 50/50 mix of RO and tap for my water, and will post the water parameters once I measure them- but it should give me a good baseline to start.


    I will be using a Finnex 24" FugeRay Planted + for lighting.


    I will be using CO2 and an in-tank diffuser.


    I think that is all the specs I have from now.


    I would appreciate any and all feedback on my goals, especially on plant selection.


    I know that I want to try AR mini between the repens and the rocks, some bushy stems (primarily on the left side), and something interesting but not tall on the right side.


    Other than that- I am completely open and would love to hear your suggestions!


    Thanks!
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    #1 geektom, Jul 16, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2017
  2. Jason King

    Jason King barrreport.com
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    Tom your images are not showing up?
     
  3. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    Hmm, it worked on other forums- let me see if I can fix it.


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  4. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


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  5. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    Sorry about that- can you see them now?


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  6. Jason King

    Jason King barrreport.com
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    thats working now :)
     
  7. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    Added some AR mini cultures to the DSM last night. Still open to any other suggestions for the back of the tank.


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  8. DutchMuch

    DutchMuch Junior Poster

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    Ludwigia arcuata. Rotala Indica.
     
  9. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    Those are both beautiful and the narrow leaves will look nice in a smaller tank.

    There seems to be a lot of color variation, especially in the rotala. What affects their color the most- lighting, CO2 or ferts?


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  10. Dale Hazey

    Dale Hazey Junior Poster

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    Nice looking tank geektom.
    +1 for Srepens that plant is a champ
    Awesome rocks.

    Couldn't give a recommendation on any plants I am afraid. But if you want to learn more about rotala, dive into Pikez's kill tank journal. It's quite a long read with lots of information, most of it is well beyond my understanding of this hobby.

    Dale.
     
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  11. DutchMuch

    DutchMuch Junior Poster

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    All, Co2, proper fertz, and lighting take a large effect in both of those plants imo.
     
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  12. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    Try not to be jealous of my mad photo-editing skills: this is what I am thinking of. Open to feedback.[​IMG]


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  13. DutchMuch

    DutchMuch Junior Poster

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    I would replace the anubias with something more fit for midground. I think the extreme change from the foreground to background would look out of place, just me. C wendtii bronze, IMO maybe wendtii tropica, as bronze IMO would be to much of a focal point. (again just my opinion.)

    Btw yes im super jelous of your mad photo editing skillz, to good 4 me
     
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  14. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    Thanks for your input-- that is what I am looking for.

    I was thinking of the anubias there to provide some angularity, so everything is not so "fluffy", and the hastafolia has the higher, arrowhead shaped leaves- but I see what you are saying. I am keeping my eye out for a good piece of manzanita that might work coming up and out of that corner, but I haven't found one yet.
     
  15. DutchMuch

    DutchMuch Junior Poster

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    Sounds like a plan, like that.
     
  16. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    Hey all, some updates:

    From another local person on the boards I got an Ehiem 2215, inline heater, 5lb CO2 tank, and a regulator, along with some glass pipes.

    My Finnex light should arrive tomorrow.

    I have EI dosing ferts on order and they will arrive before I am ready to fill the tank.

    I decided to go with film rather than spray to frost the back of the tank- I will be applying it tomorrow.

    I am trying to dive in and understand the EI method, but I have to admit I am still a little confused regarding how to get *started*.

    A few questions:

    * Ok, please don't laugh, but what liquid medium do I mix the ferts in? Distilled water?

    * How much impact does my starting tap water have on my dosing? Am I wasting time and water to create RO water?

    I have 20g of RO water ready to go. My initial plan was to mix the RO and tap until I achieved the correct GH.

    I will be hopefully be filling and planting the rest of the tank in two weeks!

    So far the S. repens is doing great with the DSM- the AR mini does not show any growth yet after 5 days, but no melting, either.

    I found a nicely shaped manzanita branch for the corner- it is soaking now.

    Hard to be patient, no matter how many years I have been in the hobby!



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  17. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    Ok, backing is on the tank, CO2 tubing and tank are in place (with the exception of the bubble counter, which is on its way), filter and inline heater are set up with new tubing.

    One misstep- the frosted backing won't allow the auction cups for the glass pipes to adhere to the back of the tank. Whoops. I had to rig some on the inside, which means I was able to use clear auction cups, but had to black clips because I don't have clear ones (the pipes had attachments built in on the outside where they don't work now).

    It also makes the lily pipe outlet tilt in an odd way- I think it may end up pointed too far towards the surface once the water is running.

    A lot to fit into the small stand I am using, mostly because I have some awkward, large timers (one for the light, one for the CO2). I can't find smaller ones that accommodate a three-prong plug).

    Anyone know if you can buy more of the little suction cups that the CO2 tubing goes through?


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  18. Christophe

    Christophe Subscriber
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    Distilled or some of your RO water is great for mixing ferts. 10ml or so of white vinegar is a good addition to it also, to inhibit mold and maybe help preserve chelates in your micros.

    Depends on what's in your tap water. How hard? Are there any nutrients that the tap is already supplying abundantly? Are there any problematic things in your tap?
     
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  19. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    It is pretty hard- here is our water report:

    http://www.riversideca.gov/utilities/pdf/wqar/2014-Water-Quality-Annual-Report.pdf


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  20. geektom

    geektom Junior Poster

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    I got a fresh master test kit today to compare my Tap water to the RO I created.

    Someone told me that RO water would stabilize at a pH of 7 after 48 hours- mine certainly did not. I tested it several times to be sure and got in the mid-6's every time.

    Keeping in mind that I will be injecting CO2, which will lower the pH, am I better off going with the 50/50 mix, to give more of a buffer against the pH going too low?

    Tap:
    KH: 13 drops (off the charts- 12 drops = 214 ppm)
    GH: off the charts
    pH: 8.0
    Ammonia: 0 ppm
    Nitrite: 0 ppm
    Nitrate: 20 ppm

    RO:
    KH: 0
    GH: 0
    pH: 6.4
    Ammonia: 0 ppm
    Nitrite: 0 ppm
    Nitrate: 0 ppm

    75/25 mix of RO/Tap:
    pH: 7.0
    KH: 4

    50/50 mix of RO/Tap:
    pH: 7.2
    KH: 6








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