Newbe needs help! - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 12:10 PM Thread Starter
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Newbe needs help!

I am a newbe with a new 75g tank and I really need some low tech guidance. I'd like to end up with some attractive plantings with a couple schools of tetras and a few feature fish. I have to say the more I read the more confused I get. I want a beautiful tank, but I'm also getting really nervous about ending up with a mess!


Here's what I am thinking of purchasing based on recommendations and budget (of which I have none) :


1. Lighting - Finnex 24/7 48"


2. Filter - Sunsun 304B


3. Substrate - Eco complete with BDBS cap. I'm afraid of a dirted tank - I like to "tweak" arrangements and I might very well make a big mess.


4. Plants - easy to grow and low to medium light requirements. Maybe floaters to diffuse some of the light?


Please tell me, am I on the right track? Am I going to end up with algae issues? I'd like to place an order and get going on it - but I'm afraid to make a move!
Thanks in advance!

Jane C.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 12:30 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2017
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The best thing you can do to get started is start

While there is a ton of advice and knowledge out there, there is no 100% fool proof method to anything. By the sounds of things you are on the right track, set that puppy up and let 'er rock. We all run into issues when we start planted tanks, or marriages for that matter. Easiest way to fix something is after it is broken. I started my tank about 10 weeks ago. In that time I had diatom blooms, a small bout of BBA and then to top it all off ick, we won't get into the tannin issue. Now my tank is sparkling clean, no algae to speak of and my shrimp and platy are breeding like crazy.

You will be fine my friend. There are a lot of people here with a lot of knowledge and together we can get through.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 12:48 PM
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I say just go for it! Low tech tanks are pretty easy to get set up and maintain, as long as you stay within your means. My biggest problem with low tech in the past has always been wanting to grow more difficult plants than my tank could accommodate. My latest low tech setup(after some learnings) is a 10 gallon with a current USA LED and an Aqueon 30 HOB filter. I keep anubias mini, hydrocotyle sp, java moss, and pearlweed. Aside from the moss i don't get much growth, but it all looks fantastic. If you want to keep it simple at first i would skip the dirt. You'll be fine with an inert substrate. I've found that with most plants in a low tech tank, the limiting factor for growth is the lack of co2. Keep a short photo period at first, something like 8 hours per day to limit algae outbreaks (you're sure to have these at some point). Don't worry about fertilizers, shouldn't need them in low tech.

Don't be intimidated, not a lot can go wrong in low tech. You'll be fine.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 01:01 PM
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I would ditch the eco complete and just use all sand. Other than that everything looks good
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 01:26 PM
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Originally Posted by York1 View Post
I would ditch the eco complete and just use all sand. Other than that everything looks good
Yep, this is the best route IMO, just go with straight BDBS. I'd also look at the Fluval Fresh and Plant 2.0 over the 24/7. I have both lights and the Fluval is a much better light, has a 3 year warranty and will give you a better light spread.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 02:51 PM Thread Starter
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OK - I'll use all sand, and I will look into the fluvol fresh lighting. If I try to keep things as "simple" as possible do you think I will still need to do frequent water changes? And if I make good choices on my plants will I be able to get by with root tabs only? Thank you all for your advice - I'm feeling encouraged!

Jane C.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 02:10 AM
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Go for it start and just take your time. One thing you've got to know is all good things take time even low tech tanks.

You are definitely on be right track. Grab the essentials get it going and begin the tank cycle.

You can have lots of beautiful plants. Even if it's low tech. I use liquid ferts such as flourish excel.

Though plants at a local store are convenient I've never gotten any better deals than right here on our wtb/raok or for sale section.

I just recently started up a 29 gallon again and the fellow member basically filled my tank with different variety for less than 20 bucks! Sure it'll take more time to grow in a propagate to fill in more but like I said this is about patience.

Water changes will still be necessary but depending on your plant load and bio load from fish will determine how often
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 02:47 AM
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It will be a much less stressful process if you just accept you will have issues with algae, probably some disease at one time or another and the equipment you get will more than likely wanted to be upgraded in one way or another in the future. We have all had these issues and it comes with the hobby. Embrace and learn from them and you will have a easier time achieving your goals.

Dan
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 04:24 PM Thread Starter
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My 75 tank is almost ready to fill! I used PFS only, and my sunsun 304B and Finnex 24-7 should arrive today or tomorrow. My hardscape is almost ready - I'm boiling the heck out of the driftwood to remove as much tannin as possible. I'm ready to order plants - my plan is to stick with low-mod light and easy to grow for now.

I have two questions:

Where should I place the filter intake and output spray bar and the heater?

I have an Aqueon circ pump (950) - do you think I need it? I haven't opened it yet and I can take it back. I noticed a lot of people use them but maybe that would be TOO much current? Would you suggest a lower gph or skip it all together?

Thank you!!

Jane C.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 04:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcordar2 View Post
My 75 tank is almost ready to fill! I used PFS only, and my sunsun 304B and Finnex 24-7 should arrive today or tomorrow. My hardscape is almost ready - I'm boiling the heck out of the driftwood to remove as much tannin as possible. I'm ready to order plants - my plan is to stick with low-mod light and easy to grow for now.

I have two questions:

Where should I place the filter intake and output spray bar and the heater?

I have an Aqueon circ pump (950) - do you think I need it? I haven't opened it yet and I can take it back. I noticed a lot of people use them but maybe that would be TOO much current? Would you suggest a lower gph or skip it all together?

Thank you!!
I would say the filter is self should be sufficient for both filtration and flow depending on your aquascape you may or may not need to add a circulating pump to address dead spots. For now I would just stick with the filter and see how the flow is. I prefer to put my intake at one end and the output at the other with my heater close to my output, I find this works well for flat scapes. There is not 1 way I would say that is best but rather based on each individual aquarium if you had a scape built up in the middle a more rotational flow would probably be better.

Dan
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 05:06 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Dman911 View Post
I would say the filter is self should be sufficient for both filtration and flow depending on your aquascape you may or may not need to add a circulating pump to address dead spots. For now I would just stick with the filter and see how the flow is. I prefer to put my intake at one end and the output at the other with my heater close to my output, I find this works well for flat scapes. There is not 1 way I would say that is best but rather based on each individual aquarium if you had a scape built up in the middle a more rotational flow would probably be better.

Dan

OK! I'll return the pump and see how it goes. Thanks for your set up suggestions. Now to the plant selection and order.......

Jane C.
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 05:27 PM
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OK! I'll return the pump and see how it goes. Thanks for your set up suggestions. Now to the plant selection and order.......

I always found it never hurts to have extra's laying around for when you need. But that's just me

Dan
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-31-2017, 09:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcordar2 View Post
I'm boiling the heck out of the driftwood to remove as much tannin as possible.

I'm ready to order plants - my plan is to stick with low-mod light and easy to grow for now.
Since you are boiling driftwood to remove tannin it is safe to say you don't want tea stained water.
Add a bag of Purigen to your filter to keep the water clear.

Let us know about your plant selection.

Buy an extra towel, tank is deep, arms will be wet.

Swimming is not that difficult.
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