Fluval Spec V (5 gallon/19 litre): 56k warning! - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-06-2013, 12:55 AM Thread Starter
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Fluval Spec V (5 gallon/19 litre): 56k warning!

Hey I'm new to this forum and new to owning an aquarium.

Just got a Fluval Spec V and this is the first tank I've ever had. After looking through this forum I thought I'd try my hand at turning it into a planted aquarium which will house a few friends once it completes its cycle. I appreciate any comments or suggestions, and remember I'm a newbie so go easy

Here's some photos to chart my progress putting it all together yesterday:

In the Box:



Nutrient substrate in and sand on top:



Managed to find an interesting piece of hardwood to weave some moss through.


Hardscape pretty much done:



Planted a few of the smaller plants and grasses around it.

I decided to do the planting dry, before adding some water and keeping on checking they remained secure. This is because I'm a beginner and thought it could get pretty messy if I did all the planting half-full.


Started to put in some of the taller plants towards the back right:





All the plants in now and ready for some water:




Moment of truth as the water starts to go in:





Water filled up:




Now to set up the light and rest of tank:




Had some air bubbles in the sand and needed a few finishing touches.

Finished Tank:




Quick Youtube video (1 min 20). Tried to show some angles:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9WJbHSupsb8



Thanks, hope you like it. More to the point, hope my fish like it


Pretty pleased with the tank and its looking pretty clear already. In the photos it was only running for about an hour or two and was quite crystal. Think it might be because I did dry planting, who knows.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-17-2013, 08:11 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, so after a week or so's growth:



Wow those that said the Spec's lights won't grow anything can eat my shorts.

Problem is it was too cramped for me to feel comfortable introducing any fish (who would've thought... plants grow duh) so I decided to do a complete re-scape and lose a few of the plants, especially those that hadn't taken root too well (sand was too deep, have removed some now).



A lot more spacious for my little harlies I'm getting in the next couple of days

Good news is the ammonia and nitrites are pretty much at 0 now (maybe at 0.1ppm) and nitrates at 20ppm so I think the system is ready for some fauna.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-18-2013, 01:54 AM
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I believe the plant that is on the right side that has green and white on the outsides of the plant is not a aquatic plant.

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-18-2013, 02:00 AM
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I, too, just started up my Spec 5. I have some shrimp in there now. What kind of fish are you thinkin of? By the way, you're tank looks great!

If the only tool you carry is a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-18-2013, 02:02 AM
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Yup. The plant on the right is not true aquatic
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-18-2013, 12:28 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys. Looks like both of the plants on the right may not be 'true aquatic' plants. I'm heading straight to the LFS when this snow clears and demanding an explanation/refund/exchange for actual aquatic plants. Not only that but I had a few snails sneak in with the plants the first time round. Dont seem to be having problems with the new setup as a full clean of the plants was done in between. Won't be buying my fish from there that's for sure!
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-18-2013, 01:02 PM Thread Starter
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Any suggestions on a plant that may look nice in their place? so I can avoid being ripped off again lol.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 06:44 PM
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Argentine sword would give a similar profile to what you have there. Swords in general, really. Amazon swords are easiest to find, I think. Vals would also give you the height, as long as you don't get one of the HUGE varieties (some can get a few feet long)

"Aquariums are like science, art, and hypno-therapy, all rolled into one," I insisted.
"You're not putting a hundred gallon tank in the living room," my roommate replied.


10g "Community" of nothing but Danios - 2g (barely) planted Betta - 2.5g Betta - 1g Pond Snail Repository

My aquascape style tends towards 'tall in the back, short in the front, lots and lots of green and stuff. And maybe a rock somewhere...'
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-23-2013, 12:49 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the tips, think some kind of sword would be ideal, but I'm gonna wait a while for the fish to settle in before I start messing about with the environment.

Here's the setup as is stands at the moment, not the best picture but you get the idea:



6 black phantom tetras (I do a 25% water change approx 3-4 times every 2 weeks). The flow of the pump hits the end of the tank and circulates down nicely. The fish love swimming up into it so they have plenty of exercise and room to stretch.

Have added a black background to make them more at home, and a marimo ball to help keep nitrates down.

One problem I did have was that I was using water boiled in the kettle to mix with tap water to get the right temperature. However this had the effect of raising the pH (and probably the hardness) to about 7.4 due to severe limescale. I am going to boil the water in a saucepan in future to keep pH neutral and maybe go with some natural peat in the filter to add a slight staining and softness to the water. This should hopefully bring back a deeper black colour to the Phantoms since they prefer a slightly acidic-to-neutral pH in soft and peaty water.

Last edited by Aquaflow; 01-23-2013 at 01:00 AM. Reason: adding percentage to water change
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-23-2013, 04:06 PM
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Sounds like a good plan! I hope it makes things better for the fishies I am kind of digging the arch effect of the clear front and more planted sides.

"Aquariums are like science, art, and hypno-therapy, all rolled into one," I insisted.
"You're not putting a hundred gallon tank in the living room," my roommate replied.


10g "Community" of nothing but Danios - 2g (barely) planted Betta - 2.5g Betta - 1g Pond Snail Repository

My aquascape style tends towards 'tall in the back, short in the front, lots and lots of green and stuff. And maybe a rock somewhere...'
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-23-2013, 09:52 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks! I tried to create an interesting centrepiece that still allowed room for hide and seek and swimming around happily.

Here's some photos as they are regaining their colour now they're getting used to the tank:



^^^(red fins mean she's a female, lovely colours on this little one)




^^^ My smallest male, Jaws! Looks almost transparent against the white rock but in fact his 'black' colour is coming back nicely and he's a cheeky one, he loves the camera!
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-27-2013, 11:57 PM Thread Starter
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Added some java ferns tied to some wood at the back right, Anyone identify the plants in the middle? god i'm such a noob. I thought these plants added balance to the tank and give the fishies some nice areas to hide and mark their territories

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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-26-2013, 10:14 PM Thread Starter
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New Layout:


Last edited by Aquaflow; 02-27-2013 at 04:52 AM. Reason: new video
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