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Old 07-22-2013, 07:02 PM   #31
talontsiawd
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Thanks! Few things I learned.

1. HC Cuba is not as humidity demanding as you think. I honestly think it grew better during the 2 weeks that I was gone and did not mist at all. And I live in SoCal where it's pretty dry.

2. I made the mistake of "adding" nutrients by spraying with water from a water change (fish only). This invited the BGA to start appearing and not sure how much I really aided the growth. Use only root tabs or nutrients from aquasoil.

3. Leave a crack in your seal for gas exchange and to let some of the humidity to escape.

4. If you can see water on the surface of the substrate, it's too much water. You can see that there's little growth in the front 2 corners. Those are the low points and it was constantly flooded. Conversely, the back left corner was the highest point and I was worried that it would get too dry, grew just fine.

5. Tilt your tank if you have slopes to get a more even distribution of water level. Only add enough water so that your lowest point just begins to flood.

All of these are great tips. I have never had much issue with DSM on HC myself either. Had a few times it didn't work so well but that was due to CO2 issues after filling.

The biggest mistake people make with DSM is just putting too much thought into it. It really doesn't need consistent misting or high humidity, not sure where that assumption comes from. Over misting, having the tank to sealed and having too much water are common mistakes and kind of all go together with having too much moisture. I often see people try to add moisture or try to increase humidity when they are having issues which is usually the opposite of what is needed.


Anyway, tank looks great. Glad you went with the second scape.
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Old 07-23-2013, 10:29 PM   #32
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In your past experience, how many bubbles per second should I run the CO2 while the transition happens?

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All of these are great tips. I have never had much issue with DSM on HC myself either. Had a few times it didn't work so well but that was due to CO2 issues after filling.

The biggest mistake people make with DSM is just putting too much thought into it. It really doesn't need consistent misting or high humidity, not sure where that assumption comes from. Over misting, having the tank to sealed and having too much water are common mistakes and kind of all go together with having too much moisture. I often see people try to add moisture or try to increase humidity when they are having issues which is usually the opposite of what is needed.


Anyway, tank looks great. Glad you went with the second scape.
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Old 07-24-2013, 07:16 PM   #33
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In your past experience, how many bubbles per second should I run the CO2 while the transition happens?
BPS really depends on tank size/diffusion method. If you are using a drop checker, make sure it goes to yellow. After you see new growth, you can assume it has transitioned well and bump your CO2 down so you can add fish without gassing them.
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Old 07-25-2013, 01:59 AM   #34
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Yellow, got it thanks!

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BPS really depends on tank size/diffusion method. If you are using a drop checker, make sure it goes to yellow. After you see new growth, you can assume it has transitioned well and bump your CO2 down so you can add fish without gassing them.
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Old 07-28-2013, 04:26 AM   #35
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FLOODED!!!

7/27: Finally flooded the tank, all systems a go. Final cost = $200 I am not planning to have to spend anymore until I need to stock.

I am running CO2 at ~6bps, flow rate at least 250gph (25X turnover). Switched out the 23w CFL for a 13w and reduced photoperiod to 4 hours. Going to do daily 50% WC for 2 weeks with half EI dosing.

Here's to all or nothing!

Some pictures below. Any suggestion on what to plant in between those 2 rocks? Right now I am thinking Blyxa Japonica or DHG Belem, but I am open to suggestions (especially something red).

Tank Shot (please excuse all the equipment, I am trying to use as much of existing equipment as possible since this is my first planted tank experiment, if everything goes well, I will upgrade to move mostly everything inline and glass pipes)


My paintball CO2 setup with homemade bubble counter.


Rena Filstar XP3 next to Ista Max Mix Reactor. I feel like the reactor does a pretty decent job, especially given the price. It does make some noise, but I think it's mostly due to the amount of CO2 going in right now. I ran it for a bit without any CO2 and it's pretty silent.


Drop Checker Yellow? Check!


Obscene amount of pearling going on right now haha
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Old 07-28-2013, 05:10 AM   #36
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Looks really good!!
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Old 07-28-2013, 05:24 AM   #37
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Nice! I really like the stones! what are your plans for stocking?
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Old 07-28-2013, 05:57 AM   #38
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Thanks, harvested them from the beach.

This is probably going to be a shrimp only tank. I might do regular cherries just to figure out how much CO2 and dosing they can handle.

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Nice! I really like the stones! what are your plans for stocking?
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Old 09-01-2013, 06:34 PM   #39
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Catastrophe Strikes!

I had a catastrophic failure of the heater due to I moved it higher in the tank and forgot to turn it off before changing water. It was above the water line for too long and blew up in 2 pieces. Yes it projectile itself into the wall.



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Old 09-01-2013, 06:59 PM   #40
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Catastrophe Strikes!

I had a catastrophic failure of the heater due to I moved it higher in the tank and forgot to turn it off before changing water. It was above the water line for too long and blew up in 2 pieces. Yes it projectile itself into the wall.



Woooow! Sorry to hear about your tank. That carpet was looking very good. I hope no one got hurt from that heater.
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Old 09-01-2013, 07:01 PM   #41
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Wow, that's no good. I can't believe that it broke that violently, it looks like the dry wall even cracked after it went through the glass. Must of scared you pretty good, haha. Hopefully your clean up efforts are going/went well.
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Old 09-01-2013, 07:05 PM   #42
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Wow, that's no good. I can't believe that it broke that violently, it looks like the dry wall even cracked after it went through the glass. Must of scared you pretty good, haha. Hopefully your clean up efforts are going/went well.
Ya it shoot about 1/2" into the drywall

I am at a lost of how to transplant into a new tank...
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Old 09-01-2013, 07:10 PM   #43
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Ya it shoot about 1/2" into the drywall

I am at a lost of how to transplant into a new tank...
Pull your carpet up ASAP and put it in a Ziplock bag if you don't have another place to put it. That will keep it good for a few days, maybe up to a week or so. Then you can take some time figuring the whole thing out. I haven't had that bad of a failure but I did crack a pane with a rock (tank was luckily empty). It was a lot nicer having time, rather than running around like crazy like when I have to move a tank.
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Old 09-01-2013, 07:28 PM   #44
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Pull your carpet up ASAP and put it in a Ziplock bag if you don't have another place to put it. That will keep it good for a few days, maybe up to a week or so. Then you can take some time figuring the whole thing out. I haven't had that bad of a failure but I did crack a pane with a rock (tank was luckily empty). It was a lot nicer having time, rather than running around like crazy like when I have to move a tank.
Ok, so keep the carpet in DSM conditions in the zip lock or fully submerged. What about the current substrate, does it go with the carpet or just plants only? They are about 5 weeks into the flood from DSM.
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Old 09-01-2013, 07:46 PM   #45
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Ok, so keep the carpet in DSM conditions in the zip lock or fully submerged. What about the current substrate, does it go with the carpet or just plants only? They are about 5 weeks into the flood from DSM.
DSM conditions are fine. Basically, you would do it the same way you would ship plants. For me, that would maybe 1/4 cup of water and fill the bag about 1/2 way full, use more than one if you get past that. I wouldn't worry about getting the old substrate out of the root system and then put the substrate in a bag, bucket, etc to reuse if that is your plan.
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