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Topic Review (Newest First)
04-11-2014 12:03 PM
crazymittens Hm, been a while since I updated.

The new lighting is working great, I've settled on 50-75% with two 4-hour photoperiods (separated by 3 hours). Every 2-3 weeks I pull out a few clumps of green hair-ish algae from the areas that get blasted with light (very top of driftwood and the gutter guard under the light). Aside from that, no algae to speak of.

We had one phantom tetra die a few weeks ago, I think just old age.

Umm...yeah. Plants are growing in nicely. I think the bacopa doesn't like the water or something, it grew well to start, but just isn't lasting. Whatever that feathery plant is's going bananas. The reddish plants are growing really well, too. Vals are coming in, but will probably take a while for a 'forest' to grow out. I'm guessing in 6-8 months (so the 1-year mark) things should be just about where I'd envisioned.

Oh, the angels keep spawning and eating the eggs every 3-4 weeks I think. The black skirt tetras seem (imagination?) to continue growing...the largest has to be almost 3" long now. I still would really like to add another 20 or so cardinals in, there aren't enough of them to really enjoy the colouring. One day.

If I remember/have time I'll post up some pictures. Now that the weather is nice car/home maintenance will be taking up most of my spare time.
02-12-2014 01:55 PM
Phil Edwards *evil grin*

Congratulations on the spawn. Here's to hoping some of the fry survive.
02-12-2014 01:02 PM
crazymittens Dagnabbit, Phil!!

Seriously, though. They spawned again. Hence the pic.

This weekend. Really...I, not really.
02-12-2014 12:41 PM
Phil Edwards Nice fish, but are they living in an 8"x8" tank?
02-11-2014 11:31 PM
crazymittens Phil, this'll have to do for now. I have no time/desire to break the tripod out for a proper picture of the new lighting. Suffice it to say it's like high noon.

02-10-2014 03:29 PM
crazymittens No, the pipe is glued into the bulkhead, I'd have to replace the entire assembly.
02-10-2014 03:12 PM
Phil Edwards Ah, I misunderstood. The smaller pipe does make sense. Is there any way to replace the in-tank part with a smaller pipe and bushing for the bulkhead?
02-10-2014 02:58 PM
crazymittens Primary siphon has a valve already, but a valve would work better than a restictor cap (adjustable at least). I think the 1" piping inside is the only real viable option - reduces the physical amount of water required to maintain a siphon, thus problem solved. In theory, anyways.

Haha, I'll get pics up this week. Hopefully.
02-10-2014 02:43 PM
Phil Edwards Way to be a buzzkill.

Seriously though, I'm glad to hear you're all enjoying the tank and things are working well for the most part. A little tinkering/optimization is always fun, isn't it?

Rather than make a restrictor cap why not just get a valve of some sort? It may be a little more money, but solutions like that tend to be a better idea in the long run than some experimental DIY contraption. Then again, that could be due to my lousy DIY skills. LOL

02-10-2014 01:05 PM
crazymittens Ok, so the bad news since you're all chipper this morning:
  • Sump mech area full of those ceramic balls to be cleaned out (this will be annoying for sure)
  • Make a lid for the ex.OF
  • Trim the secondary siphon to actually FIT inside the ex.OF
  • Properly seal the secondary siphon ACTIVATOR (emphasis mine)
  • Properly seal the sump itself around the drains
  • Add a pipe clamp for the return line (child proofing measure)

Ideally I need to find some 1" piping and jam it up inside the primary siphon to help with the siphon issues, or make some kind of restrictor cap at the bottom...I'd really be getting into experimental fluid dynamics issues, though.

Anyways, once all of that is done, this is what I'm thinking long-term:
  1. Learn how to properly trim/grow/care for aquatic plants
  2. CO2 (maybe if my job situation changes)
  3. Replacement return pump (if current ones break)

We are so happy with this tank as it is, there really isn't much more to do beyond growing the plants in.
02-10-2014 12:18 PM
Phil Edwards Sweet! That's all good news. I look forward to seeing this beast of engineering with the new lighting.
02-10-2014 10:45 AM
crazymittens Quick update...
  • New light is still awesome, still haven't had time to do some decent pictures.
  • Yay, angry fish is gone to a new home. Guy from picked him up, hopefully he'll enjoy the new home.
  • I also drained that tank - it's going into storage. Just no time to deal with two tanks these days.
  • In other news, I played around with the overflow setup yesterday and managed to find an acceptable siphon configuration. The 1.5" piping is still an issue for the primary siphon, but it's MUCH quieter now, and the secondary siphon is back in action.
  • The fish also haven't gone berserk from the dual's good.
02-04-2014 10:39 AM
crazymittens Wow, the new light is incredible - so bright!!! I really now want to reduce/split my photoperiod just to keep it running at 100%.

The fixture itself is about twice the width of the old one, same thickness. I reused the dimmer and tank mounts. If anyone is on the fence about the XB - do it! Totally worth the $70 difference or whatever it is (for the 6' model anyways).

Will throw a pic up tonight if I get time.
01-31-2014 11:43 PM
crazymittens Whee, light is stuck in customs. Should be here early next week.

In other news, for a 'no water changes' tank, I've now done two water changes simply because my method of refilling the tank (python) just makes it too easy to do a water change while I'm at it.

Also...all those ceramic ball thingies I cleverly thought would be fine in the mech area of the sump have clogged it. Guess I'm making a mess tomorrow.
01-24-2014 07:59 PM
crazymittens I get the feeling I'm a weird anomaly based on my last conversation with support. If nothing else you aren't left wondering if their support is any good, eh?

As added insurance, I might stuff a UPS between the light and timer this time, though, even though the kill-a-watt came up with good numbers. (the UPS does line filtering to a degree)
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