This build has a similar goal to my last (50G with 30G sump - month 10 update
), namely that I want little to no maintenance (aside from feeding) while still getting the benefits of a lovely aquarium to look at.
Since the shrimp really didn't enjoy themselves last time (read: fish bit their heads off) and we enjoyed them so much, I just had to make amends. Thus...shrimparium. I'll be doing red cherries again with the purpose of a) shrimpies, and b) breeding for adding 'waves' to the 50G. (shrimpies are awesome, btw)
- 20G 'long' (lying around) w. MTS and spare gravel
- Rena Filstar XP1 (leftovers)
- Home Depot 'brooder' lighting
- Glass lids to keep evap down
- Shrimpies & moss
- That is all
Yeah, we have a miniminiminimal budget this time around. My wife was amused/annoyed at how my 'no really, we can do this for $500' quickly more than doubled last time, so we (we) are watching dollars like a hawk for this project.
The good news...mineralized topsoil materials are already 'in the house', glass for the lid is leftovers, the filter is leftovers, and the tank is leftovers (was going to be the sump originally on the 50G project). So the whole project aside from plants and the 'brooder' reflectors is 100% diy/leftovers.
I'm not sure if I'm retarded...or just silly for overcomplicating my first project, but I could not, for the life of me, figure out how to plumb the canister filter. Ya, internet had to help me out. Spraybar??? Weird angly-pipy stuff? Wat.
Anyways, once it was up and running, not really that complicated. I had run a prototype setup that was complicated, and it 100% did not work.
- Water sucked into XP1 from tank
- Water pumped from XP1 into sump
- Water pumped from sump into spraybar (via standalone pump)
Ok, it was close...but due to pump head losses, the in-sump pump was 'just' too weak, and the XP1 slowly drained the 20G tank into the sump. Obviously bad news bears, and since I didn't have another/stronger pump lying around, I abandoned the idea. According to that online filter/bioload calculator, the XP1 is at 25% capacity with 80 shrimp...so with plants, should be able to keep things maintenance-free.
This was my first opportunity to cut glass (for the lid), so the glass cutter I'd had lying around for 10 years was finally used...pretty easy, actually! Once the glass was cut, I drilled holes for the XP1's input/output plumbing using bits from the diamond holesaw set I got off [Ebay Link Removed] Totally worth it to spring for the set when I had just needed 1 or 2!!
Pretty sure I'll still cut the large piece in half to make access easier.
I read through one of the threads on DIY lighting...will dig up the link...and came away fairly convinced that the brooder lamp DIY was the one for me. Cheap to make, cheap to maintain, no fuss.
I'm horrible at remembering people's names...so latin plant names is even worse. Will do my best.
- Java moss...attached to a floating plastic ball
- Water wisteria?
- Java fern
Ya ok that was bad...all I know is that the 'java fern-y' red one the guy said is hard to keep, but was interested to see how it'd do in MTS. I think same with the other red one. If someone feels generous enough to name these, that'd be cool. Eventually I want to do both tanks up like a science center/zoo exhibit...one day.
I got them from a local guy who is in the process of getting out of the plant...breeding?...hobby. Really cool guy, had a great conversation with him Saturday morning. He's on gtaaquaria.com and is a dras.ca member, too.
Oh...forgot the other moss bed thingy.
10. Mossy moss moss.
There we go.
Anywho. More to come...MTS is in process. The plants are living in the 50G until we're ready to move. Driftwood is in the garage awaiting choices...whee.