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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-07-2010, 05:24 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: IL
Posts: 13
any great ideas?

Here is my 55gal low light (80Watts) low tech (flourish Excel, EI).

I feel the look is OK but its not really what I envisioned when I started out.
Any great ideas to take this to the next level.

Thanks for any input.

jokoz is offline  
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-08-2010, 02:15 AM
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Wasserpest's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Monterey, CA
Posts: 15,385
Hey Joe, I think this looks really nice to start with.

For the next level, I'd do mainly two things: replace the background... perhaps paint it with some matte black (Rustoleum or whatnot) paint.

Second, I'd think about removing that nuclear power plant looking thing in the right corner. You could hide it somewhat behind plants, or replace the white part with something black. But to get it to the next level, think about removing it altogether. Maybe get a canister filter to only have an Inlet and Outlet, and an external inline CO2 reactor (if that's a reactor what you have there).
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-08-2010, 03:32 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: IL
Posts: 13
Hey Wasserpest,

Great points. The background does look bad in photos, not too bad to the naked eye. Is matte black a pretty standard background?

The thing in the corner is just a powerhead with a foam filter and a rigged up "spray bar" made from some vinyl tubing. Temporary solution to some bad circulation in that heavily planted corner. (Trying not to spend any more cash on filters etc right now.) No CO2 reactor at this point,( trying to stay simple, low maintenance).

I wasn't even thinking of those two things when I posted, I guess I developed a blind spot, after seeing that stuff everyday.

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-08-2010, 04:04 PM
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Wasserpest's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Monterey, CA
Posts: 15,385
Backgrounds are very personal pref, so there isn't really a standard. Some like black, some blue, others white or gray. I would like to try dark green/brown one day, that would make algae invisible.

Painting the outside of the tank with black paint looks good in my own personal opinion. But I know what you mean about something looking better in real life than in photos.

If you don't use CO2, you could add another small HOB at that corner to improve the flow there. Something like an AquaClear should work well, and they are often for sale for little money.

Also think about the round rock towards the left, to me it looks a bit out of place with all the other decoration, but not that bad.
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