The Planted Tank Forum

The Planted Tank Forum (
-   Tank Journals (
-   -   30g low tech Journal: LLLLOOOONNNNNG overdue update, with PICS! (

Karackle 08-07-2008 06:11 AM

30g low tech Journal: LLLLOOOONNNNNG overdue update, with PICS!
Well....i planned on making this a step by step journal, but when I went to pull out my camera i found the camera case emptied which was when I remembered my friend borrowed it. So I'll have to get that tomorrow and start there. That means this is a picture-less first post...but I'll update tomorrow of course :)

This tank was previously owned by my friend's mom but she didn't want it any more, wanted to simplify her life slightly and had trouble keeping fish alive. She knows i'm very into the hobby so she asked if I wanted it. I said YES!!! So now I have me a new (to me) 30g tank. She cleaned it all out and everything for me. And she gave me her TONS of some kind of crypt (gotta look it up).


Equipment etc.:
30g Tank (36"L x 16"H x 12"W)
36" Strip Light
36" T8 bulb
50/50 Eco-complete + Black aquarium gravel substrate
AquaClear HOB filter
Powerhead driven sponge filter

Moslty a variety of
Cryptocoryne species
Java Fern species

Guppies, lots of them
4 Otos
6 Beckford's pencilfish
10 Espei rasboras
1 CPD (maybe...haven't seen him in a while)
1 ancient black neon tetra
4 amano shrimp (2 ancient ones, 2 new ones)

Karackle 08-07-2008 01:25 PM

so (sorry still no pics) but i did do a little research and i think I have Crypt Lutea (it looks like Wendtii but the leaves are "waffly"?) if that comes in a red or have red stems. Pics later :)

And the bulb is a t12 color max 24" which i think is only 20watts? Any ideas where this puts me in terms of lighting? Loooowww right?

mizu-chan 08-08-2008 12:10 AM

Hey can't wait to see this tank. Sound like you have pretty much everything worked out. :biggrin:
As for the lighting... 20W over a 30g is very low light. That's like .67W/g. I don't know what you can grow in there except java moss, java fern, and other plants of that nature. If you have Crypt Lutea then I'm pretty sure those are moderate light.
But I'm not an expert so anyone who needs to correct me feel free. :hihi:

Karackle 08-08-2008 12:23 AM

Well, whatever the plants are that I think might be crypt lutea have been living in this tank and flourishing, but I definitely am going to need more light (despite the fact that everything grows like weeds in my 20g with a measly .75wpg :-P) But I bought a glass canopy to switch out the hood for to get more ambient light in the tank, but mizu-chan i think I'm going to take a page out of your book and do some clip-on lights with CF bulbs until I can afford a bigger strip-light. The one that came with it is only 24" long and the bulb doesn't even span the whole length so the edges of the tank are definitely in shadow.....I did find some nice wood and stones in my friends yard though.

I promise updates with pictures after I eat dinner and as I go with the 'scaping :) If my friend hasn't dropped my camera back off by the time dinner is over, i'll snap the first few shots with my cell phone :-P

mizu-chan 08-08-2008 12:48 AM

Cool cool. I'll be waiting then :D
But yeah go ahead with the lighting. I'm actually extremely happy with it. Since I upgraded to those bulbs yesterday I can defiantly see a difference in height of my plants just from today.

Karackle 08-08-2008 01:54 AM

Ok here (finally) are a couple pics before i get to work :)
(please excuse the floating and unplaced plants that i stuck in there while i was eating dinner, and the piece of airline tubing that's being used to drip acclimate my pygmy cories :-P)

As you can see it needs a background (which i got today) and more hardscape are the big things. Clearly it needs more light and plants as well. Don't have the extra lights yet, but I did pick up a glass canopy to hopefully let some extra ambient light in for the time being.

Off to do some of that all now! Will post updated pics soon!

mizu-chan 08-08-2008 02:34 AM

Looking great :thumbsup:
I really love that big rock. A few more of the same kind would look really nice.
Love how dark your substrate is too.
Subscribed! I want to see this tank progress and become freakin' awesome. :hihi:

Karackle 08-08-2008 02:58 AM

chugging along here, got some moss tied onto my driftwood and more hardscape in place so i thought i'd post a couple pictures :)

Karackle 08-08-2008 03:01 AM

Thanks mizu-chan! I love the large rock too, not sure where my friend's mom got it from, but if I can find one similar i would love to add another

SeaSerpant 08-08-2008 03:15 AM

Are you going to put moss on that rock, i think that'd look nice.

Tex Gal 08-08-2008 03:15 AM

Did you test the rock to make sure it didn't have any lime? It needs to be an inert rock so it won't change your pH. It looks like the white rock laying down is limestone.

You're off to a good start. You just need more plants...... :D

Karackle 08-08-2008 03:41 AM

Another quick update, rearranged the plants that were already in there and planted the new ones. Just need to add the black background and put on the glass canopy and then I think i'm done for tonight. Here's what it looks like so far:

Also, I have this nice piece of slate that I was thinking I could use, but I'm not sure if it would look good anywhere, thoughts? Here's the piece:

will reply to comments when i make my last post of the evening, want to keep going here :)

Karackle 08-08-2008 04:40 AM

ok this is all I can do for tonight, i think it's coming along ok. Definitely needs some more light and something in the left corner I think....maybe not when it grows in, but I think so.

Ok FTshots

Left (from straight ahead)

Center (from straight ahead)

Right (from straight ahead)

And from a slightly above angle (more they way you'd see it looking at the tank)



Enjoy! Any and all comments, suggestions etc. etc. are more than welcome.

I couldn't get a good shot of the cories (6 pygmy cories are the only inhabitants thus far) but i'll keep trying :)

Ok now I will read / re-read the comments made thus far and comment momentarily :)

Karackle 08-08-2008 04:47 AM

mizu-chan - thanks, yeah i'm digging the substrate too! I wanted to try black this time, it's about 50/50 eco-complete and black aquarium gravel :)

SeaSerpent - I've been flipping back and forth on the moss idea on the large rock, on the one hand I think it would look lovely, on the other hand, it'd cover up the lovely caves and crevices in the rock so i haven't decided, don't have the extra moss at the moment (it went to the DW that i definitely wanted moss covered :-P) so i'll think about it.

Tex Gal - The rocks are inert, the tall one lace rock, large one laying down is slate and the rest are also inert though i'm not sure what they are, no worries! :) And thanks for the compliment, definitely still needs some more plants though! :)

Karackle 08-08-2008 02:12 PM

My cories were simply ZOOMING around the tank this morning! They must be loving all the space to swim after being cooped up in a small QT tank for weeks. But a few of them stayed still long enough for me to get a couple semi-decent shots. Not great, but what's a girl to do?


All times are GMT. The time now is 10:24 PM.

Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.