Starting a new 120 gallon high-tech planted tank, need some advice!
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Old 01-12-2014, 09:53 PM   #1
MEF413
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Starting a new 120 gallon high-tech planted tank, need some advice!


Hello all! I've been reading this forum for a while now and have learned a lot, finally decided to join! I have been doing a fair amount of research and I am almost ready to start a 120 gallon high-tech, heavily planted tank! I have kept low tech planted tanks in the past, but this is my first attempt with high light and co2 injection. I plan on using the EI method for dosing ferts. I have purchased some equipment, however I need some advice on equipment that I still need to get this started, and how to set it up. Here is what I have so far:

120 gallon tank (4'x2'x2') and black pine stand

Catalina aquariums 48" 3x54w HO (I have 2 of these fixtures)

Eheim 2217 (plan on buying a second)

(2) 300 watt heaters

6-7 bags of Eco-complete

20 lb co2 tank (already own from my homebrewing days)


Here are my questions:

I plan on ordering a co2 regulator and inline diffuser from GLA after reading many positive reviews. Bear with me, i'm new to using co2, Do I want to have the co2 on a timer so that it turns on/off with the lights?,

Do you guys think the 2x2217 eheim canisters will be enough filtration?. (planning on heavily planted community tank with mostly tetras). If not, what do you guys recommend?

I'm planning on running 4 of the possible 6 54w t5 ho bulbs between the two fixtures. I ordered the adjustable hanging brackets from Catalina aquariums to suspend the fixtures. Do you guys think that will be enough light for heavily planted, also how high should the fixtures be suspended from the top of the
tank?


Let me know what you guys think! Any thoughts, advice, suggestions are greatly appreciated!
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Old 01-14-2014, 08:04 PM   #2
ipkiss
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Hiya and welcome!

Quote:
I plan on ordering a co2 regulator and inline diffuser from GLA after reading many positive reviews. Bear with me, i'm new to using co2, Do I want to have the co2 on a timer so that it turns on/off with the lights?,
You don't 'have to' but there's not much point in co2 running at night since the plants are not using it during lights off so what you don't run, you save. Some people like to run it 24/7 to maintain a "stable" amount of co2 in the tank in hopes of preventing algae triggered by co2 instability but in practice, it's okay to shut it off at night as long as you fire it up an hour or two BEFORE the lights come on. The thought is that plants demand a lot of co2 right after the lights turn on, so if your co2 comes on at the same time as the lights, you'll get a period when the plants are hungering for the co2 and your levels have not ramped up yet.

Quote:
Do you guys think the 2x2217 eheim canisters will be enough filtration?. (planning on heavily planted community tank with mostly tetras). If not, what do you guys recommend?
I don't see why this wouldn't be enough but someone else with better ideas on filtration can chime in here.

Quote:
I'm planning on running 4 of the possible 6 54w t5 ho bulbs between the two fixtures. I ordered the adjustable hanging brackets from Catalina aquariums to suspend the fixtures. Do you guys think that will be enough light for heavily planted, also how high should the fixtures be suspended from the top of the
tank?
Without a par meter, it's hard to definitively say its enough and it'll also depend on what plants you're trying to grow. BUT, it sounds like it its enough. Lighting is less of a worry than maintaining proper co2 and fertilizers I think. Usually, less light will just grow your stuff slower. Too much light will bring you all kinds of algae headaches.

Good luck!
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