75G Rebuild Thread
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Old 07-25-2013, 01:42 PM   #1
ronaldvalente
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75G Rebuild Thread


All,

I will start rebuilding my 75G tank today. Initial agenda will be something similar to:
  1. Drain water into 3x 25G new rubbermaid buckets.
  2. Transfer Fish to one bucket.
  3. Transfer plants to one bucket.
  4. Transfer gravel to last bucket.
  5. Remove Egg Crate on bottom of Tank, discard.
  6. Set new drift wood pieces on bottom of tank.
  7. Layer 100% Organic Peat Moss on bottom of the tank ~1".
  8. Cap the peat moss with existing eco-complete ~1.5".
  9. Refill 20% of the water.
  10. Manually remove all BBA covered leaves.
  11. Start initial planting.
  12. Continue to refill slowly, with both dechlorinated tap water and existing tank water in gravel bucket and plant bucket, but not fish bucket b/c increased ammonia due to fish stress.
  13. Start Filters, lights off for today.
  14. Transfer fish back to the tank.

I will be posting progress pictures after I am complete.
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Old 07-25-2013, 10:44 PM   #2
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Long day, but here we are at last. Completed all steps listed above.

Now to document the growth. Also going to keep a close eye on Ammonia as well.
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Old 07-25-2013, 11:00 PM   #3
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I see you decided to redo your 75. The only thing I would recommend is to plant heavier.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:56 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ForensicFish View Post
I see you decided to redo your 75. The only thing I would recommend is to plant heavier.
Thanks, I had too much BBA to bring it all over, I am planning on going to the store tomorrow to get more plants.

Not a huge re-do, kept all the old substrate, pulled out the egg crate that was stopping roots from growing (think that was my root cause, no pun intended) and throw some peat down at the bottom as all my fish like a pH from 5.8 - 7 and my water is 7.5 ish.

Also added some nice wood to the tank.

Will be testing ammonia tomorrow, don't expect to see much if any as this was a very mature tank.

CO2 tank is current empty, so planning on heading out to get that tomorrow as well.

Will not be dosing ferts just yet, want to ensure the fish are comfortable first.

Any other tips/pointers/things to look out for?
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:57 AM   #5
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Currently I have:

Hornwort
Anubias
Java Fern
Rotala
Amazon Sword
Crypts
Wisteria
Eleocharis

---

Any other recommended plants that I should add?
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:34 PM   #6
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Consider such a huge water change, (I did about 75% new water, and 25% old water that was keeping the bacteria on the substrate and hardscape) - should I startup CO2 and dose ferts right away?
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Old 07-26-2013, 04:14 PM   #7
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Test Kit: API
Date: 7/26/2013
pH: 6.4
NH3/NH4+: 0.5 ppm
NO2-: 0 ppm
NO3-: 5 ppm
GH: 4
KH: 2
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Old 07-29-2013, 10:59 PM   #8
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I don't think you have to start dosing with those species of plants you currently have, although it wouldn't hurt either. I do not Remember what lighting you are running so your plant selection should reflect that and whether or not you want to dose ferts. As a general rule of thumb, you want about 30ppm nitrate to feed your plants. There is a great list of low light plants in that section of the forum if you choose that route.

Careful of the pH swings. Adding peat and co2 can cause large swings if nota monitored. Also, what happens when the peat is exhausted. A little co2 goes a long way in keeping plants happy in my opinion. Your ph is a little high at 7.5 depending on what species you want to keep, but your gh and oh seem right on for almost any species.

Your light and co2 will determine the majority of your algae problems. Once you have those, ferts or no ferts is easy.

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Old 07-29-2013, 11:04 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ForensicFish View Post
I don't think you have to quite dosing with those species of plants you currently have, although it wouldn't hurt either. I do not Remember what lighting you are running so your plant selection should reflect that and whether or not you want to dose ferts. As a general rule of thumb, you want about 30ppm nitrate to feed your plants. There is a great list of low light plants in that section of the forum.

Careful of the pH swings with your co2. A little co2 goes a long way in keeping plants happy in my opinion. Your ph is a little high at 7.5 depending on what species you want to keep, but your gh and oh seem right on for almost any species.
I have high light which is what I think my issue was previously as well.
I hope between pulling out the egg crate, adding peat below my eco complete, and reducing the light via a dimmer I should be in better shape.

I have stopped dosing for now, CO2 is on low. Currently my pH is at 6.0 between the peat and CO2.
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Old 07-30-2013, 01:47 AM   #10
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Sounds like you are on the right track. As you do the water changes your peat will eventually exhaust and you are heading back towards your neutral ph. With high light you will want to look into ferts now that your co2 is in check. Now the hard part, figuring out your lighting sweet spot.
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Old 07-30-2013, 01:51 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ForensicFish View Post
Sounds like you are on the right track. As you do the water changes your peat will eventually exhaust and you are heading back towards your neutral ph. With high light you will want to look into ferts now that your co2 is in check. Now the hard part, figuring out your lighting sweet spot.
Yeah I am going to do more frequent water changes initially while things stabilize. Since I have loaches I would like to be more in the 6.4-6.8 range. Everyone else in the tank doesn't mind anything down to 5.5. In theory loaches can go to 6.0 but I like to have a safe buffer.

I will start dosing macros on wednesdays and micros on fridays. I don't want to add too many nutrients and then have BBA issues again.

As you said, getting my lighting in check is my #1 priority. I will be getting the dimmer installed and running at 50% for 6 hours. Right now it is running for 4 hours each day at 100% which is mid-high light.

Since I pruned lots of my plants back, I can tall my fish are stressed by the amount of light, so looking forward to getting my dinner installed.
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