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Jello's High Tech 125g. Lots Of Pics!

Discussion in 'Journals' started by Jellopuddinpop, Jan 10, 2021.

  1. Jellopuddinpop

    Jellopuddinpop New Member

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    Hi Everyone,

    This journal has been a long time coming, but I wanted to be thorough and show everything I'm doing, so it took some time to get around to it. I'm going to do my best to give model numbers and links to everything I purchased, in case others like my ideas and decide to try it for themselves. This new build attempted to solve most of the quality of life problems of my last tank, so where I made those changes, I'm going to be sure to point it out! Without further ado, on to the tank!

    FTS 12/30/2020:
    [​IMG]

    Around the time Covid set in, my wife surprised me with an architectural drawing and plans for a new foyer, and it included a planted tank in the middle of the wall. I couldn't pass up the chance to say yes at this, and began the work to plan out the new tank.

    Built in:
    [​IMG]

    The trim work still needs to be done, but the plan is to build a bench and book cases along this wall, hiding the rim of the tank and truly building it into the wall. I'm trying to find the carpenter to do that work right now, but it will make a huge difference.

    Substrate:
    For the substrate in this tank, I used lava rock gravel capped with Black Diamond Blasting Sand. It's hard to see in this pic, but the substrate is mounded to 7-8" in places along the back.

    Hardscape
    There is a total of about 300 lbs of Black Sieryu Stone in this tank, purchased from Buceplant.com
    https://buceplant.com/collections/aquascaping-rocks/products/black-mountain-seiryu-stone

    [​IMG]

    Plants:
    All of the plants were purchased at Buceplant.com, with the exception of the HC Cuba, which I bought at Greenleafaquariums.com
    https://buceplant.com/
    https://greenleafaquariums.com/

    Ludwigia Repens sp. Super Red. This looks much more vibrant in person, but it wasn't captured well in pictures. My primary concern with this plant is some fading of the leaf flesh in between veins. I recently started dosing some Mg so I'm going to give it a few weeks to see how it responds.

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    Eleocharis Acicularis. This took off like a weed, and has filled in between my hardscape nicely. My biggest problem here is Cory cats rooting around in it and uprooting plants.

    [​IMG]

    'HC' Cuba. This plant is slow going for me. It's definitely spreading (not growing straight up), and it looks healthy, but it's growing very slowly. Add to that the aforementioned Cory Cats, and it's a trial in patience.

    [​IMG]

    Eleocharis Vivipara. I want to love this plant; I truly do, but it's eventually getting yanked for something else. It doesn't spread via runners like EVERY OTHER DAMNED Eleocharis, but instead, by plantlets at the ends of the leaves. It's ugly, and it's infuriating. I want to plant something else back here, but I need to be careful. I don't want a Val or Crypt that's going to send runners everywhere, because I won't be able to dig them up. I'm leaning towards Eleocharis Montevidensis, but I'm getting conflicting information about trimming it. Can you just trim the top like normal hairgrass, or will it brown and die?

    [​IMG]

    Fauna
    I don't have pictures of everything, but the stock list in this tank is:

    8x Boesmani Rainbowfish (Juvenile)
    9x Turquise Rainbowfish (Juvenile)
    3x Torpedo Barb (looking for 3 more, but can't find any healthy stock near me, and it's way to cold out for shipping)
    5x Siamese Algae Eater
    6x Bronze Corydora
    6x Panda Corydora
    25x Amano shrimp
    40x Nerite Snail

    Behind the Scenes:

    [​IMG]

    Lighting:
    I'm using 3x sbreeflight basic, suspended from the ceiling. With both channels turned all the way down to minimum, I recorded 60 PAR at the substrate in the front of the tank. I'm leaving them only as high as needed to grow the HC Cuba (even if it is slow going). Once I eliminate all of the other causes, I might bump up the light on the far left to help redden the Ludwigia.

    https://sbreeflights.com/sbox-freshwater-plant-lights/71-18-basic-fresh-water-plant.html

    [​IMG]

    Filtration:
    I'm using a Fluval FX6 for my primary filtration, with Seachem Matrix Biomedia and Seachem Purigen. I really didn't like the plastic outlet, but the largest Lily Pipe I could find was only 22mm in diameter. I contacted a local Glassblower and gave him the plans for a custom 1" Lily Pipe set. He shipped the outflow already, and the Inflow is supposed to be in the middle of January. I'm going to be making a separate post about the Lily Pipes, but I want to wait until they're both installed.

    https://www.amazon.com/Fluval-Canister-Filter-FX6-400/dp/B00BJQ50HC/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=fx6&qid=1609370365&s=pet-supplies&sr=1-1

    https://www.amazon.com/Matrix-4-L-1-gal/dp/B0006JLVU8/ref=sr_1_2?dchild=1&keywords=seachem+matrix&qid=1609370382&s=pet-supplies&sr=1-2

    https://www.amazon.com/Seachem-Purigen-1000ml/dp/B0716HY12L/ref=sr_1_8?crid=3726552ACLVMS&dchild=1&keywords=seachem+purigen&qid=1609370414&s=pet-supplies&sprefix=seachem+puri%2Cpets%2C163&sr=1-8

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Heater:
    I'm using an Ista 500W Inline heater, connected to a separate water loop with my CO2. I'll get to that loop later...

    [​IMG]

    Fertilization:

    I'm dosing EI ferts from NiloCG, with a dosing pump from Jebao. The tubes are clipped to the edge of the tank by a design of my own, that I 3D printed from ABS. Auto Dosing is a huge quality of life improvement over manually dosing every day. I'm still monitoring my fert levels and adjusting as needed, but not having to dump ferts every day is a huge help!

    https://www.nilocg.com/shop/ei-based-npk-csmb-fertilizer-aquarium-plants/
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B014KKCILE/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B010F5V0QC/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    CO2:
    I have a separate loop built for my inline heater and CO2 reactor. For the reactor, I modified a Cerges Reactor to have three chambers, to help with dissolving the substantial amount of CO2 needed to drive a 125G, open topped tank with a ton of surface movement.

    Pump:
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009XSGHXY/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    In addition, a major improvement was adding a ph monitor to the tank. I went out and found a Hanna Instruments wireless ph probe and monitor, that will record ph readings at various intervals throughout the day.

    https://www.hannainst.com/edge-blu.html

    You can then upload the recorded data, and chart your ph throughout the day. Here are some interesting findings... Initially, I was getting my full 1pt drop in ph, but it was taking a really long time to get there. As I increased the CO2 dosage to get my saturation earlier in the photoperiod, I was "overshooting the mark", and stressing the fish. From there, I increased my surface agitation to lower the peak CO2 levels, and found a nice happy medium. I HIGHLY recommend the following article from 2hraquarist for a really fascinating deep dive into the mechanics of CO2 levels

    https://www.2hraquarist.com/blogs/choosing-co2-why/how-to-push-the-limits-of-co2-safely

    I went back and forth increasing both my CO2 injection rate and my surface agitation, and was able to safely push a 1.4 ph drop without stressing the fish. This wouldn't have been possible without constant monitoring.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Waterchanging
    This was a big one for me. When I decided to accept the challenge of having a tank right in the middle of my foyer, it was under the condition that I have water and a sink right next to the tank. In addition to the sink, I also plumbed in a Honeywell Thermostatic Mixing Element, and have it set at 75 deg F. My syphon hose hooks over the rim of the tank, and has holes for the syphon to break at about 70% of the water, and the other end hooks over the sink right next door. I also have quick connect fittings, so I use the same hose to refill the tank.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I think that's all for now! If you read this far, I would really appreciate any comments or criticism you might have. Let me know if you have any questions!
     
  2. Jellopuddinpop

    Jellopuddinpop New Member

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    Here are a few pictures of the fauna. I couldn't get one of the Boesmani, they're just too quick to get a good shot. I managed to get one of the Denison Barb, but he was moving quick too, so it's a bit blurry.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Paige Pore

    Paige Pore New Member

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    Fascinating. How big is your CO2 tank and how long is it typically lasting?
     
  4. Jellopuddinpop

    Jellopuddinpop New Member

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    I go through a 10 lb tank in about 2-3 months.

    Sent from my SM-G960U1 using Tapatalk
     
  5. Paige Pore

    Paige Pore New Member

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    Thanks, appreciate it, this gives me some rough degree of comparison - setting up 220 gal planted with sump (180 tank, 40g sump). I just picked up two 10lb tanks which I hope will last a few months.
     
  6. Jellopuddinpop

    Jellopuddinpop New Member

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    Just as a heads up, you may have difficulty getting 30-40ppm CO2 in a tank with a sump. You're going to need to do some serious planning to reduce turbulence in your drain pipes to get to the right CO2 concentrati9n.

    Sent from my SM-G960U1 using Tapatalk
     
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