My' Eheim aquastyle 9 Journey!
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Old 03-12-2013, 07:14 AM   #1
glassguppy
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My' Eheim aquastyle 9 Journey!


Hello everyone. complete noob here lol

It's been about 3 months since I've first aquired this eheim aquastyle 9 as a gift. And now it is time for me to use it! I've been waiting anxiously for this... Various things got in the way like remodeling, wall painting, holiday stuff and alot of other things like that. Currently I have to go along with this aquarium "aside from the light and filter that is included: A bottle of seachem prime, purigen water polisher, a small titanium heater, a stainless steel aquascaping kit "tweezers, scissors and stuff like that" - and I also have a large 9lr bag of aquasoil, a large bag of nile sand "they discontinued it so I guess I'm lucky to have it lol," and a smaller bag of congo sand.

I decided to get the congo sand alongside the nile - which is a kind of yellow gold color to help create a more natural, nuanced, gradient look. I intend to get some rocks that will coordinate but I haven't made up my' mind what kind or color..and also if I'll get some driftwood or not. I have a general "feeling" the layout will evoke and I even have a simple layout scheme too but the specific plants and so-forth I've not yet determined.

Anyway, lemme show you my' beautiful tank! lol

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As you can see, it's filled with water, the light's on, everything's assembled! I decided that before I put in the aquasoil or anything else I'd first check for leaks. If you look at the bottom of the tank you'll see some reflective disturbance, that would be some water beneath the tank. Apparently a little got out and waped the paper I deliberately placed underneath. But it's been about 4-5 days since then and all of that water has evaporated... so I don't know it there had been a minor leak or if that was condensation. I should also note that I decided to keep the feet on the bottom of my' tank... to test how well it would hold up with the water in... I had thought about possibly getting some pennies and placing them beneath the tank, perhaps in the center since there's no support there to offset any potential weaknesses and prevent any possible accidents... But then again maybe the manufacturer had already considered this in their' design and I'm worrying too much? lol... maybe it wouldn't hurt to practice a little precaution, I DO like the look of the tank slightly elevated off the platform lol...

The two cups you see inside the tank are both congo and nile sand. I placed them there to give my' mind an idea of how the two look side by side in the tank under the LED lighting.

A little bit about the layout: This will be my 'first planted tank so it's very important that I kinda "get it right the first time" and not step into something that will overwhelm me or send me on a long grueling journey to eliminate algae or other preventable things... to start out, I'm not sure how powerful the light is on this tank but I think I'll begin with mostly low light, hardy plants like java fern, anubias petite and so on... I still don't know what all is out there that would be suitable for me. But I want to limit the plant variety from 3-5 different species. The way this tank sits in my' room I will be looking at it from the angle opposite of the angle where the filter is so it makes sense for me to have a slope that goes upward toward the filter with a beach following the front bow... this is where I plant to have the nile sand and congo sand lining the rocks which will be medium sized along side the very side edges of the tank.. and on the beach too... I might have some anubias petite sited onto the black rocks, not sure yet. I know I want the overall finished design to be tall like this tank is.. so maybe having some mossy driftwood spire upward might be a good idea lol I don't know!

I guess for now my focus is on finding the right rocks, choosing the right plants and figuring out how to start everything right the first time. Should I have the rocks, drifwood and plants ahead of time before soaking the amazonia? lol Any insight would be great. I'd love to get started soon.

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Old 03-12-2013, 07:39 AM   #2
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what do you make of the actual tank itself?
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Old 03-12-2013, 07:50 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by stevencaller View Post
what do you make of the actual tank itself?
its an ehiem 9g manufactured
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Old 03-12-2013, 10:09 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevencaller View Post
what do you make of the actual tank itself?
I'm not sure I understand what you're asking. Are you asking what I think of the tank? So far I think it's great! Although I do wish the glass were low iron.

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Old 04-12-2013, 09:56 PM   #5
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Default Setting the foundation

Okay, UPDATE! LOL, I finally just got tired of waiting and decided to go ahead and get the aquasoil and sand foundation put in... from the very beginning I knew that I wanted a kind of sloped, diagnal layout with a little beach. I chose the nile for a warmer appearance.. The brown stones you see I gathered from the park and simmered in hot water "yes I know boiling can be dangerous." I haven't done the vinegar test to see if these rocks are usable... I know that limestone isn't and there were/is ALOT of limestone everywhere here where I live... I found this brown stone near a creek. It's the same stone that this town used to use for it's walls a long time ago which lined the water ways... does anyone recognize it? Is it usable?... the smaller stones are sort of porous and some have fossils in them.. I chose them for their' texture ... I may not keep the stones in place, I might just buy lava rock later on or remove most of the stones and put branches shooting upward for a certain foresty look I'm currently admiring, covered in tied java or "taiwan moss?" This video is an excellent example of the kind of "feel" I want in my' tank... I wonder if it will be possible without co2 and medium lighting? I still haven't selected which fish I want to use but it looks like I might go for a group of 7 harlequin rasboras and maybe a couple fe-male bettas... I want this tank to have a very peaceful, "still water" feel... I think bettas and harlequin rasboras are from the same region and in this video the plants may be from a similar region as well.. any insight?

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Old 04-12-2013, 10:14 PM   #6
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Here is a photo of a tank that I kinda want to model mine after.. Of course mine will look different but the overall feeling I really like... Which is a kind of mossy, forest look... not too daunting like alot of amazon tanks filled with monsters lol...no, what I want is a happy, enchanted foresty clearing with faerie like, friendly peckish fish... or something more contemplating like bettas, which move about slowly, gracefully... if any of this makes sense...

Anyway, alot of layouts done in eheim aquastyles for some reason look pretty lame...for some reason... but every now and then you'll find a tank that is done well "in my' opinion" and this is one of them... From what little I know, I would guess this tank has no co2 and uses low to medium light, hardy plants..which is what I want. Anyone know for sure? Also I'm wondering if this is a biotope and if so, would it possibly be similar to the one in the video of my' previous post?.. if so, what region and would it go well with bettas and harlequin rasboras?
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Old 04-24-2013, 02:52 PM   #7
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That is an awesome tank for inspiration. Your off to a good start. Looking forward to more.
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:00 AM   #8
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Okay, a while back I found some branches around my' house and added them to my' tank. I've since gotten plants, wrapped some java moss on the branches and so-on. Here are a couple of photos of what this looked like at the time...
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:06 AM   #9
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And so, about a week or so ago I finally had an opportunity to get some plants. I wasn't prepared with a list because I had no idea what the store I was going to had stocked... what I was intent on getting were of course hardy plants like anubias and java fern/moss etc... so I knew at least I couldn't screw up if I got those....and so I did...alongside two other tall background plants I know not the names for... one I think is rotalla indica and I'm not sure what the other is... both of them were in the same tank with harlequin rasboras and looked beautiful. Whatsmore I understood that I could later take their' clippings and create new plants and they grew and that appealed to me. Below is a photo of the sort of "last minute, not so well-planned jungle."

Oh and also, the beach has since been cleaned up. I was thinking eventually I should get a low lying plant to carpet the amazonia and secure it into place with it's roots... thenward maybe I could consider bottom feeding fish to help keep things clean worry-free.
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:10 AM   #10
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Looking back, I realize I've made a mistake buying full sized plants instead of babies and also not sticking with a pre-determined list...Also I believe I've even paid significantly more at this store than I would have had I chosen to order them online...the markup was significant... Then again I chose to go the direction I did due to several reasons, one of them being that I prefer to see what I'm buying in person especially if it's a living thing.. But I think with my' experience thus far I'd be willing to consider differently next time...

You might be able to see, there's this large java fern I've got in there...it's a mat and cost around $35.. apparently it's a mother fern because right now it's got little baby ferns sprouting off the tips of the leaves - I didn't get a carpet plant of any kind.. my' anxiety was flared up and it was difficult trying to concentrate... When I got home and arranged everything loosely based on the energy of the design... I had absolutely no room for the java fern so she got placed literally to the side above the beach... eliminating the clustered island/airy beech concept I initially wanted... What I ended up with was kind of surprising to me because it seemed to work and offset the glare of the led light above which seemed kind of cold and sterile to me... at least with the fern there it created a more intimate jungle look and I could see a cathedral of green from there. Not a bad look but what I had intended overall and what I ended up with leaves me a little disappointed... this hardly stops me from enjoying my' tank, plants and fish though.. And besides! I'm just getting started and learning... thank goodness I chose to go low-tech ahaha...

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Old 05-07-2013, 07:22 AM   #11
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Before hitting the big fish store I stopped by petco and picked up an anubias for around 9 bucks... I'm not sure what kind it is but I'm guessing nana petite. Any ideas? lol Also the creepy guy who bagged it up for me left a surprise I hadn't noticed until I was back in the car on my' way to the LFS. A beautiful blue guppy!! lol. It's odd, at the very beginning, even before I got this tank itself this past december I was pondering what kind of fish to get and my' first thought were guppies because they were so inexpensive, hardy and come in a wide variety of colors and shapes... That or maybe a female sorority of bettas... As time passed it was a duel between either harlequin rasboras or celestial pearl danios... lol as it would turn out: the guy at the store inadvertantly made the decision for me ahahah... since then I've picked up a yellow tailed female who I've affectionately named bumblebee and a very nice red cobra "will picture those two later if anyone's actually curious and requests it lol" -- Anywho I guess the crud on the leaves are algae... I hear anubias is hard to kill so I've got my' fingers crossed. And perhaps with the right algae eater I can get those leaves looking spotless... Maybe at least one siamese algae eater. - Btw, anyone know why those leaves are kinda yellow? Is that due to a light over or underexposure? or nutrient deficiency?....
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:30 AM   #12
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Default Mystery plant reaches surface and goes pink.

This isn't a great pic but could anyone identify this plant? It's reached the top of my' tank, I think it's rotalla indica... but I don't know... and is there a reason it's turning a kind of pale pink/purple type color? Is that the light bleaching it out? I've lifted it since and the new growth has continued in that color... Maybe it's the iron in the amazonia substrate... hmm.
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:49 AM   #13
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Default Some plant problems

Okay, the photos here were taken maybe about 9 days ago...

First up is the java fern, which when I got it had a few small brown and black spots here and there. Imperfect but otherwise healthy, crisp and green... Since then spots of a variety of brown or black have appeared on the leaves.. the roots that have developed under the leaves where babies have begun to sprout - have become dark mulpy and fuzzy.. I don't like it... what looked like a nice crisp and healthy green javafern and now beginning to look like a moldy bunch of lettuce... The black spots I've tried using my' finger nail to scrape off... to see if it were some kind of algae or if it had a fuzzy, filmy texture but it doesn't appear this is the case.. Even so, recently "today actually" I've noticed the tips of a few of the baby plants leaflets are beginning to become transparent... As it stands the only nutrition I have in the tank is the amazonia substrate, whatever the fish give off and I have a bottle of seachem flourish which I use with precaution and alongside api co2 booster to help offset things because I don't want an algae bloom... I've also recently got an api master test kit... so I've been doing frequent water changes at anywhere from 10 to 40 percent to help keep the nitrite levels down... steadily I'm learning about the different aspects to things but I can't say I've got much figured out... Also I did have some string algae as pictured below.... but I just grabbed a pair of tweezers and yanked it out.. this was about a week ago and I've not seen any since then... maybe the water changes are taking care of that... lol any thoughts or insight? .. I haven't been getting alot of help on this forum and it would mean alot to me if some dialogue were happening. lol I really want my' tank to look as fantastic as possible.

Oh also the final pic below with the blue guppy in it lol - you can kinda see the crap under the java fern's leaves... it's since gotten worse... what would you do?
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Old 05-07-2013, 12:57 PM   #14
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what branches did you add ? it might rot away
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Old 05-07-2013, 06:53 PM   #15
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what branches did you add ? it might rot away
I honestly don't know.... I think it's some kind of nut type tree, the nuts are a green color and have a particular smell, not a black walnut tree... we also have a peach tree and an oak... so not sure...the bark is still on the smaller branches but the bigger one is stripped of it all... all three of the branches were dead and dried.. weird thing is this kind of fuzz growing on it.. I don't know what it is but I don't trust it or like it.. I've also been picking off alot of little snails too...
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