Silky's 55 gallon Sword and Val Planted Tank - The Planted Tank Forum

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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 07:10 PM Thread Starter
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Silky's 55 gallon Sword and Val Planted Tank

This is my second tank, I bought it on craigslist for $20. I resealed the entire tank and replaced the top rim/centerbrace. I used left over T8 lights I had on my 90 gallon previously and a generic 2 bulb T8 light fixture to put 3 T8s over it. The substrate is kitty litter and play sand, both combined cost me a grand total of $7. . The filters are left over box filters I had from my 90. And the backing is a poster board you would use in a science fair type project that I bought at an art's and crafts store and cut to fit back. The rocks are granite I found on an interstate on ramp (lol) that I pulled over illegally and grabbed. And I put a DIY C02 on it. All in all, this tank was very cheap to put together. It took some time and elbow grease to reseal remove old rim and order/replace new one, but it was pretty fun.

As for the plants I'm trying to cover the back in longer grasses. I've got a few jungle vals, some corkscrew vals and some sag back there. in the front I have some crypts anubias and java fern.

For fish as of now just 3 danios and 2 very small marble angels. I think eventually I'll have a few angels and some ottos.
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Last edited by Silky; 08-11-2012 at 08:40 PM. Reason: .
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 07:44 PM
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Looks good for the price, the jungle vals with reach the surface so quick once they get established.

What part of Maryland are you from??
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 07:56 PM
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I wish I could get a good deal like that on smaller tanks, lol, but nice setup, one thing I don't like is the darker red background but I'm sure it will look cool once the plants fill in
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-05-2011, 01:02 AM Thread Starter
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We actually picked the color because the room it is in has alot of dark red in it, I guess you would have to see the 360 to see it all together.
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-22-2011, 01:05 AM Thread Starter
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update with a few new plants, dwarf lillies and red Ludwigia. Replaced 55 with new 55 and replanted, due to kids hanging on old tank (trying to pet the fish) and the center brace breaking ..

Replace substrate again. Kitty litter and white sand topping.
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-21-2012, 09:30 PM Thread Starter
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lace leaf is growing again, was a bulb for last 2 mnoth just started a week ago and is getting huge already.
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-22-2012, 12:14 AM
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Looking very good. Looks like it has nice plant movement. Nice new growth!

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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-22-2012, 12:36 AM
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You can grow plants in kitty litter??

Sent from my SGH-T959V using Tapatalk
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-22-2012, 01:08 PM Thread Starter
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Yes, very well also. I read somewhere that someone that worked in a lab did some tests on kitty litter and it had comparable or better than florite. It has to be an unscented all natural kitty litter, bascially clay. The one I bought was titled "special kitty litter" 25 lb bag from walmart. Runs about 3 dollars. Very Cheap :P
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-22-2012, 01:22 PM
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I'm glad someone else has a pure cat litter bottom layer I am just starting my first 55 gallon tank and am going to go with cat litter on the bottom capped with black blasting sand. My only question is how did you set up your DIY CO2 I'm worried about pH swings because I plan on having a few angels and rainbows
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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-25-2012, 06:01 PM Thread Starter
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I have angels and rainbows in my other tanks also. All my tanks have DIY co2, just 2 liter bottles, sugar, yeast and baking soda. For my 55 gallon tanks I'm using 2 , 2 liter bottles.
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-25-2012, 06:06 PM Thread Starter
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Basically 2 , 2 liter bottles joined with a t valve, through a check valve and into the tank via tubing. I use chopsticks ends shoved into the tubing for a bubbled, and I use a cut out of a small water bottle top with a hole drilled through it to capture some of the co2 and let it dissipate into the water alittle longer. Seems to work well so I've made the same thing for all of my tanks. Kind of like a under water diving bell if you know what I mean.
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-03-2012, 04:33 AM Thread Starter
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updated pic, swords have taken over, lace leaf grew back. Have a long finned german ram in here , think he's hiding.
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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-30-2012, 08:50 PM Thread Starter
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new pic, swords are getting loco ese.
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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-30-2012, 11:01 PM
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