Rickztahone's 55g and 2 x 10g projects (update 02-13-11)
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Old 10-12-2010, 07:24 PM   #1
rickztahone
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Rickztahone's 55g and 2 x 10g projects (update 02-13-11)


well, after reading excessively and irritating quite a few people through PM i have finally made plenty of progress on starting these 3 tanks. I will be tackling all 3 at the same time which should be fun .

So first let me start with the tank and livestock i'm parting with shortly. i have been a discus keeper for quite a few years now and i am sad do see my discus go but i want to take on a new challenge. i currently have a 125g 6ft tank with 11 discus originally but now am down to 8 with 3 waiting to be picked up (deposit was left). The money i am making from the discus and tank has been going towards buying all the things i need for these 3 tanks. Since these will mainly be shrimp tanks i could not keep the discus since they have been notorious shrimp eaters. So, here are some pictures of my discus and 125 currently:


full tank shot

that is a 7" whopper right in the middle which has scratches because breeding has gotten fierce as of late in this tank. he scratched himself on the driftwood.

the tank was predominantly turqs but i had quite a mix at one point. the red melons were some of my first discus which is why i kept them. they hardly have peppering at all. those are sold and waiting to be picked up currently.

you can actually see the red melons laying on the power head here, lol.

So, with the sadness that came from selling all my discus and shortly my 125 i embark on this new challenge.

Tanks:
55g will be the community tank with co2
10g no co2, will be mainly the selective breeding tank
10g no co2, will be the culls tank
hopefully i can remove the rim from both of these with no problems

Filtration:
I currently have 2 XP3's in my 125 which have 2 Hydor 300w inlines. I will be using these on my 55 and more than likely adjust the flow so that there isn't a crazy tornado in the tank. I doubt i will need a power head.
The 10's will hopefully have 2 Eheim 2213's (i bought one so far) w/ lilly pipes.

Stocking:
All 3 tanks will have:
RCS i just acquired some great ones that are so red they look like fire reds
CRS so far i have A-S+ grade
only the 55 will get around 100 chilli's or so
Otos for 55
and possibly BNP depending if they do not eat shrimp, i still have to read up on that.

Lighting:
55g will get a 48" T5HO w/ 2 (or possibly 3) bulbs. this will be raised with fixture legs
10g's will both have a 48" T8 32w suspended over them (yet to determine the height)

CO2:
I bought a 2 stage concoa regulator off ebay and i bought the post body from Jason. It has a clippard solenoid, Fabco needle valve and i bought a JBJ BC from a fellow member. the 10# CO2 tank i also bought on ebay new and the local airgas said they will fill it for $14. My CO2 will be diffused with a rex style reactor which i am still working on.

Substrate:
55g I will be buying MTS from a fellow member and i am yet to decide what i will cap it with, i am still reading on it, i know i want to go with black for sure though.
10's I have already bought 12L of ADA Amazonia

Fertz:
55g will have full dry fertz dosing, I am still asking on another thread which i need to use considering my lighting and water parameters.
10's will not have any fertz in the water column, maybe some root tabs and such.

Stand/Canopy:
All are yet to be built but i am fairly sure i will get around to building both pretty soon, lol .
I will go with 3/4 wood and paint it black, i will not stain any of it since i hated how my 125 stand came out, it just seems i am not that handy with a paint brush. So i figured if i just painted it it might be the easiest route. the 55g Canopy will be a flip canopy.
As mentioned before the 10's will have a hanging light fixture and the stand for the 10's will hopefully match the one for the 55

Flora:
I am completely unsure, there are just too many beautiful plants out there but i think i will try to edit myself as much as possible and only get a few types as oppose to a whole bunch of plants that makes it look cluttered. i plan on keeping some of the plants i currently have, some of which i do not know the name of. I will keep my driftwood with anubias and maybe the huge ball of java moss, see pic:



i'm concerned that this piece might be too large for a 55 and might not use it. it would be a shame since it's such a nice piece, maybe in a corner somewhere?

well, that is all i can think of for now, here are all the pictures:



this is where my shrimp are currently kept in, not the prettiest but it works



the lighting was not bad at roughly 20 bucks inclucing bulbs at home depot


other 9L en route from ADA


it took me a while to piece this together (the acquiring of the parts, not the actual building, Jason assembled the whole needle valve, check valve and solenoid)

that is all for now, i will be taking pictures as i make the stands/canopies and a few other things. thanks for viewing!

Last edited by rickztahone; 02-14-2011 at 11:21 PM..
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Old 10-13-2010, 12:05 AM   #2
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Man, that was the sweetest looking discus breeder tank I've ever seen. I don't know how you got up the nerve to take it down. The discus themselves look sweet as well. You got more pics of it??

Good luck with the CRS tanks. Aside from mosses, I think hygros are the ideal plant for a CRS tank; they don't require much care and they absorb their fair share of nitrates. I've learned the hard way that a CRS tank shouldn't be too densely planted. It makes cleaning and keeping track of them a real hassle.
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Old 10-13-2010, 04:08 AM   #3
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Man, that was the sweetest looking discus breeder tank I've ever seen. I don't know how you got up the nerve to take it down. The discus themselves look sweet as well. You got more pics of it??

Good luck with the CRS tanks. Aside from mosses, I think hygros are the ideal plant for a CRS tank; they don't require much care and they absorb their fair share of nitrates. I've learned the hard way that a CRS tank shouldn't be too densely planted. It makes cleaning and keeping track of them a real hassle.
i do have more pics, and trust me, it breaks my heart to do it since i've dedicated so much time to get them that big, my smallest one was 5.5" and everyone else was at least a 6 incher. here are some random pics of when i had them all:

that's when they were a tad younger. i still had my domestic brown then

full tank shot

and this was my Penang Eruption which was one of the first to sell on CL for $75! She was a beaut and had intense pattern. i can't believe i sold her so cheap, she was 6.5"
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Old 10-14-2010, 04:27 AM   #4
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i forgot to mention my water change plumbing. I bought a temperature control valve since my discus like the warmer water. So the temp valve keeps the temp from going over 84F even when i have both valves fully open. here's a shot under the stand where the valves are for H and C.


on that same picture you can see where i made a hole for the pvc drain through my wall and out to the side of the house to the front lawn. here's where i placed the pvc end to drain the tank.


It has a cap to keep critters out.

here's a shot of how the temp valve looked at first, but i had to change it a bit due to the fact that it mixed both the H/C water through the temp valve. Now, it mixes them through the top side of the U which has both the H/C added to it and does not reduce the output pressure. It took some tweeking but i finally got it to where i liked it. Sry, i don't have any current pics of how it looks now so i had to settle for the old one.


i generally do not use the hose to fill up the 125 since the pvc leads directly to the U that hangs on the rim, but i added the hose so that i can fill up another tank if necessary. It use to take me quite a while to do a full water change, in my case from 80-100%. It takes me roughly 20 minutes to do a full WC now
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Old 10-17-2010, 12:31 AM   #5
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after much struggling with these 10's to make them "rimless" i finally got them bad boys off, lol. there is a silicone residue that i was not able to eliminate even with a razor. i also installed the shop lights but i am not sure if it is a good distance from the tanks. also, those lights seem to be emitting some heat which kind of scares me due to the fact that i need that tank to stay in the low 70's due to CRS's. i will monitor the temp closely.

The stand was relatively easy to make. of course that is not how it is going to remain but for the time being i just built the structure and i will by all the wood to make it all nice pretty later .

i included a shot of the 5.5 at the end with a shot of the gorgeous RCS i got from Nature Aquarium locally, i swear they look like fire reds! ($3.50ea, what a bargain!)

on to the pics:








please excuse the water marks on the 10's, i had just finished cleaning them. also, the pics are super exposed, i had to shoot on auto because i'm kind of in a rush.

well, let me know if you have any feedback, good or bad .
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Old 10-17-2010, 12:34 AM   #6
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Those are some red cherry's nice. Is ur 55 going to have tons of shrimp too or just the 10's? A 55 shrimp tank would be sick.
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Old 10-17-2010, 12:39 AM   #7
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Those are some red cherry's nice. Is ur 55 going to have tons of shrimp too or just the 10's? A 55 shrimp tank would be sick.
yeah, the 55 will be mainly a shrimp tank with the only exception being about 100 chilli's and a few oto's. i will keep one 10 for selective breeding (you know those super reds are going in that tank) of rcs and crs, and the other 10 will be for culls.
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Old 10-17-2010, 01:16 AM   #8
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Why are you downsizing from the 125 to a 55?
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Old 10-17-2010, 01:36 AM   #9
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Why are you downsizing from the 125 to a 55?
Mainly because the 125 has some scratches, not huge ones but enough not to make it a show piece IMO. This 55 is also serving as a test tank to see if I can manage a fully planted tank. My ultimate goal is to buy a brand new 240 and have it fully planted with 16 discus. I need to get my feet wet first
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Old 10-17-2010, 10:05 PM   #10
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i finally finished my reactor


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Old 11-08-2010, 01:02 AM   #11
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well, i have an update finally. i have been hard-pressed for money lately so the builds are taking a little longer than i would like. I bought the slim-line backgrounds for all 3 tanks, fairly cheap too. i also finished the skeleton of the 55 stand today but i didn't bring it into the house as of yet. i still need to buy lights/substrate/fauna for the 55.

The 10's are pretty much ready to go, but since they have aquasoil they will not be cycled for a while. i was thinking of growing some HC with DSM, my question is, if i do that how long will it take to cycle the tank AFTER i finish with the DSM? i have honestly never cycled a tank, i have always taken media from another filter and started a cycle that way.

here are the pics: the 55 didn't have such great lighting seeing as it was on the floor. the last picture is the one that shows all tanks, a sight my wife is not too happy with! LOL. i'm yet to sell all my discus in order to sell my 125.










This picture shows pretty accurately the actual color of the background.





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Old 11-16-2010, 06:52 PM   #12
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so i wanted to try out the DSM. If it doesn't work oh well, if it does, great! I don't think i have enough lighting on the smaller tanks to grow HC but we shall see. Can anyone tell me if the placement is off on my planting of HC for optimum emersed growing?


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Old 11-16-2010, 08:26 PM   #13
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Rick ~ The new tanks are looking good. I love the backgrounds. Man I wish I lived closer to you, I'd smack you for taking down that 125 . What beautiful fish.

As for the DSM. You should get a spray bottle and spray the back AS to keep it moist. You also don't want that puddle in the front. I know it's hard with the steep incline, but you just need to stay on top of it. You should be able to grow the HC no problem with the DSM, but if you're not going to have co2 on these tanks, it's going to melt when you fill it.
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Old 11-16-2010, 09:08 PM   #14
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Rick ~ The new tanks are looking good. I love the backgrounds. Man I wish I lived closer to you, I'd smack you for taking down that 125 . What beautiful fish.

As for the DSM. You should get a spray bottle and spray the back AS to keep it moist. You also don't want that puddle in the front. I know it's hard with the steep incline, but you just need to stay on top of it. You should be able to grow the HC no problem with the DSM, but if you're not going to have co2 on these tanks, it's going to melt when you fill it.
As far as the smacking goes, my wife's already done it, lol. She loves that tank/discus. The backgrounds im starting to think were pointless since I plan to cover the the background with stem plants.

As far as the DSM, its you who introduced me to it, so thx. Also, do you recommend for me to remove the small amount of water? Or just keep the plants above the water line? All 3 tanks will have co2, so hopefully once i flood the tank it wont melt. I do have a spray bottle with water and dry fertz mixed in. I was planning to just spray 2x's daily, do you recommend spraying more times? Thx Anthony
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Old 11-16-2010, 09:22 PM   #15
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I used a turkey baster to remove the extra water and sprayed the AS and HC when it looked like it needed it. 2x's a day should be plenty. I'm new at the process too, so take my advise with a grain of salt.

I'm doing a little project in my garage with DSM and HC. I have an old 48" t8 and some tupperware with AS and HC clippings. I didn't plant anything, I just spread it out and let it do its thing. So far it's been 2 weeks and I'm starting to see it take off. Oh yeah, I have only sprayed it 2 times total. I'm trying to see if planting each stem and spraying it daily was worth it. So far it looks like it's not.

In regards to the backgrounds. I still think it's worth it to have them in. The plants will never cover the back completely. Unless you are do a moss wall or something similar. Keep up the good work. It's coming together nicely
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