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Old 04-14-2014, 02:51 AM   #16
kuopan
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So I've added the Eco-complete substrate and started planting a few things.

Dwarf Hair Grass, Taiwan Moss (on mesh), and Riccia. I didn't have anything to attach the Riccia to. Temporarily it's sticking on some extra eheim tubes that I have, haha.. We also picked up two other plants (not sure what they are called) - picked those up first without research which is probably not a good idea. They don't look like they are doing too well.. = /

As for the cycling process.. I tried to speed it up by bringing water up from my established tanks at my parents' house. I probably managed to bring up about 5 gallons. Filled up used waterbottles, haha..

Right now, there are just a couple of things I'm concerned about.

1) I'm still thinking about how to raise the light fixture. Made a trip to home depot and couldn't find any clean solutions. Might just add some wood to raise it..

2) The water circulation from my Eheim 2213 seems to be too strong. So I turned the output to face the glass. Water circulation still seems strong. Any suggestions? is it good to have more water circulation? only problem is that some of my dhg looks bent..

3) Not sure if my plants will thrive without co2 - I think I will have to wait until my tank is fully cycled.

Currently dosing excel only.

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Old 04-14-2014, 05:46 AM   #17
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The filter should be fine. Generally you want some kind of waving with the plants but not tornadoish waving. After time the filter will build up gunk inside and this lessens the flow somewhat until cleaning time.

Fluval sells little intake sponge covers for about 2$ and I use them on all my filters. Keeps a lot of the big particles out of the filter itself and makes the need for canister cleaning take a lot longer. Just have to pull off the sponge squeeze it out in some dechlorinated water and done.

I used to run a 2211 on my 20l before the 2213 and the 2211 wasn't enough.
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Old 04-14-2014, 06:18 AM   #18
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fantastic stand, love your placement and how it blends with your decor. sub'd for future updates.
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Old 04-14-2014, 04:38 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kuopan View Post

Out of curiosity, how long did you leave the lights on for which resulted in the algae outbreak? I'm hoping I can battle the algae by limiting the turn-on time for the light, and adding the 2 BN plecos. Since I'm steering into the direction of low light plants, I'm hoping that won't limit growth.
I left the lights on starting for 10 hours before realizing how much light it was. Dropped it down to 8 hours and started to get the algae under control before making the switch to the other fixture. I was in the same position where I couldn't hang the lights because of where the tank is. Next best option would be the raisers like theericafish mentioned. I remember seeing them at one point but can't remember who it was selling them.

I would stick to a single bushynose unless you are really into plecos. They just have a relatively high bioload and don't consume all that much algae. I always keep one because I like them. Consider some otocinclus and japonica shrimp.

As the tank fills in more and the filter starts to break in you will notice the flow is reduced. Are you sticking with strictly plants or have you considered some hard scape?

I can't tell for sure form you photo but that plant in the back looks like dwarf cardinal. Like I said, just a guess though.
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Old 04-15-2014, 01:37 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by theericafish View Post
The filter should be fine. Generally you want some kind of waving with the plants but not tornadoish waving. After time the filter will build up gunk inside and this lessens the flow somewhat until cleaning time.

Fluval sells little intake sponge covers for about 2$ and I use them on all my filters. Keeps a lot of the big particles out of the filter itself and makes the need for canister cleaning take a lot longer. Just have to pull off the sponge squeeze it out in some dechlorinated water and done.

I used to run a 2211 on my 20l before the 2213 and the 2211 wasn't enough.
Thanks for the advice! I'll look into getting a sponge cover to keep the particles out of the filter. As for the flow, my DHG was all bent when I woke up this morning so I had to move them a bit closer to the front. I also rejigged some of the larger plants from the rear right and placed them behind the DHG.

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Originally Posted by henrietta View Post
fantastic stand, love your placement and how it blends with your decor. sub'd for future updates.
Thanks so much!

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Originally Posted by MadRiverPat View Post
I left the lights on starting for 10 hours before realizing how much light it was. Dropped it down to 8 hours and started to get the algae under control before making the switch to the other fixture. I was in the same position where I couldn't hang the lights because of where the tank is. Next best option would be the raisers like theericafish mentioned. I remember seeing them at one point but can't remember who it was selling them.

I would stick to a single bushynose unless you are really into plecos. They just have a relatively high bioload and don't consume all that much algae. I always keep one because I like them. Consider some otocinclus and japonica shrimp.

As the tank fills in more and the filter starts to break in you will notice the flow is reduced. Are you sticking with strictly plants or have you considered some hard scape?

I can't tell for sure form you photo but that plant in the back looks like dwarf cardinal. Like I said, just a guess though.
My gf actually took a picture of the sign before we bought the plants in the back. One of them is a bacopa species. In either case, they don't look like they'll survive. I must have put them in way too early before my tank even cycled.

I'm planning on adding some rocks and tieing some moss on it. Planning to stay away from driftwood.

On another note, I just found out a simple CO2 system that I've decided to implement, the Nutrafin A7690 CO2. I'm planning to mix my own yeast after the pre-packaged ones are finished. I also don't know how I feel about the ladder CO2 diffuser. I might buy a glass diffuser instead.

Nutrafin A7690 CO2 Natural Plant System with CO2 Activator and Stabilizer: Amazon.ca: Pet Supplies Nutrafin A7690 CO2 Natural Plant System with CO2 Activator and Stabilizer: Amazon.ca: Pet Supplies
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Old 04-15-2014, 01:59 AM   #21
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On another note, I just found out a simple CO2 system that I've decided to implement, the Nutrafin A7690 CO2. I'm planning to mix my own yeast after the pre-packaged ones are finished. I also don't know how I feel about the ladder CO2 diffuser. I might buy a glass diffuser instead.

Nutrafin A7690 CO2 Natural Plant System with CO2 Activator and Stabilizer: Amazon.ca: Pet Supplies
I haven't personally owned the nutrafin system but I have seen it used before. I actually have all the pieces to set up a DIY CO2 system and haven't set it up yet. The ladder doesn't seem all that effective and is kinda clunky but should work with the system. I would say its a good starting point if you don't feel ready to delve into pressurized CO2. Personally I feel like everyone should learn the process of setting up a lower tech tank in order to get the hang of plant growing. I am hoping to get a pressurized system up and running in the coming weeks after maintaining my 40 breeder without CO2 for a while now.
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Old 04-15-2014, 03:55 AM   #22
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If you want to save some money you can always make the diy system yourself. You can use gatorade bottles or 2liters, cut holes in the top and make the mixtures yourself.

Theres a lot of different ways to do it..

Diy co2
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Old 04-15-2014, 01:42 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by MadRiverPat View Post
I haven't personally owned the nutrafin system but I have seen it used before. I actually have all the pieces to set up a DIY CO2 system and haven't set it up yet. The ladder doesn't seem all that effective and is kinda clunky but should work with the system. I would say its a good starting point if you don't feel ready to delve into pressurized CO2. Personally I feel like everyone should learn the process of setting up a lower tech tank in order to get the hang of plant growing. I am hoping to get a pressurized system up and running in the coming weeks after maintaining my 40 breeder without CO2 for a while now.
Quote:
Originally Posted by theericafish View Post
If you want to save some money you can always make the diy system yourself. You can use gatorade bottles or 2liters, cut holes in the top and make the mixtures yourself.

Theres a lot of different ways to do it..

Diy co2
I've considered DIY systems as well. I feel like there are just too many things that can go wrong. I've seen some people add an extra generator to the nutrafin via a DIY 2L bottle. Will consider that down the road. For the time being, I'm hoping this nutrafin co2 setup will do the trick..

Once I understand the benefits and mechanics for a CO2 system better, I may consider going pressurized or doing a DIY system.
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Old 04-15-2014, 02:45 PM   #24
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Found the raisers if you are still interested in going that route.

http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=567866
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Old 04-15-2014, 03:12 PM   #25
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Found the raisers if you are still interested in going that route.

http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=567866
Thanks Pat! I just messaged him. I did have a couple of questions for him. I wasn't sure if he shipped to Toronto, Canada and I also wasn't sure if the raisers would work with a glass canopy.
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Old 04-20-2014, 02:45 AM   #26
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So here's a quick update:

1) Planted a bit more dhg and got some java moss which I currently adhered to a broken ceramic pot. I haven't had a chance to find something proper to attach it to.

2) Bought some more plant nutrients. Now, I have Excel, Flourish and Potassium. Not sure if I'll need to get more but hopefully, this will suffice for the time being.

3) Got the Nutrafin Co2 System - decided not to use the ladder so I bought a glass diffuser and a check valve. I am hoping the glass diffuser will work. The person at the LFS told me that this diffuser normally only works on pressurized systems. I'm hoping he doesn't know what he's talking about because I've seen a person on this forum use a similar diffuser on his Co2 setup (which seems like an identical one that I am using). I am also not sure if the check valve will be adequate. I bought a simple one from Marina/Hagen. This check valve is meant for air pumps normally but I'm hoping it will work for Co2 as well. Given my current setup, I have to unfortunately place the co2 system underneath my tank and not at the same height level. So I'm really hoping this check valve works.

4) I think I have a general idea on how I want this planted setup to look. I will mostly stick with DHG, and hope that it carpets the entire tank eventually. I'm going to cut up some of my old driftwood and try to make tree trunks. On top of the tree trunks, I'll try to grow mosses of different kinds (java moss, pheonix moss). The overall look of the tank that I want to achieve is a forest aquascape. We'll see how the plan unfolds though = ) anyone have any ideas on how to cut up driftwood?

As always, here are some pictures:

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Old 04-21-2014, 02:26 AM   #27
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Love what you put together so far, we went with very similar equipment (20L, finnex, eheim, nutrafin).

Glad to see you got a glass diffuser, the ladder that comes with the nutrafin system is not good at diffusing and gets very dirty. I'm the guy you mention up above using the glass diffuser , works like a charm with the nutrafin canister.
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Old 04-21-2014, 03:06 AM   #28
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I didn't realize that our equipment is so much alike until you mentioned it! haha.. I guess I'm just following a success story = )

I just set up the nutrafin co2 system with the glass diffuser today! so far, there's only a bit of co2 being released. = / It's been on for at least 10 hours now. Starting to wonder if my diffuser is too large?

this is the one that I got...

http://www.aquainspiration.com/nprod...user%20Reactor


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Love what you put together so far, we went with very similar equipment (20L, finnex, eheim, nutrafin).

Glad to see you got a glass diffuser, the ladder that comes with the nutrafin system is not good at diffusing and gets very dirty. I'm the guy you mention up above using the glass diffuser , works like a charm with the nutrafin canister.
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Old 04-21-2014, 11:58 AM   #29
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I didn't realize that our equipment is so much alike until you mentioned it! haha.. I guess I'm just following a success story = )

I just set up the nutrafin co2 system with the glass diffuser today! so far, there's only a bit of co2 being released. = / It's been on for at least 10 hours now. Starting to wonder if my diffuser is too large?

this is the one that I got...

http://www.aquainspiration.com/nprod...user%20Reactor

Wait for a few more hours, sometimes it takes a bit to get the proper pressure going.

If for some reason it doesn't work try mixing your own yeast/sugar combo, I've had better results with my own, sometimes those packets are expired.

If all else fails then maybe you need a smaller diffuser, I used a nano co2 diffuser I found on Amazon.



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Old 04-30-2014, 03:29 AM   #30
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So it's been 10 days since my last update and a lot has changed.

My co2 system is up and running although the co2 isn't diffusing as smoothly as I'd hoped. The entire ceramic isn't being utilized and co2 bubbles are only coming out of one section of the glass diffuser. The bubbles are also coming out periodically with approx. 1 sec pauses. I'm unsure what is causing this. My best guess is that the glass diffuser is too large or my check valve is restricting some of the flow. In either case, the Co2 system seems to be working since I see growth in my riccia including the bubbles at the end of the plants. The riccia is currently my favourite plant in my tank since it is flourishing more than any of the others.

As you can probably see, there are a ton more plants! I ended up buying a low-light plant package from someone in a local forum for $10CAD and there were more plants than I can fill in my tank. I ended up having to ziplock some of the moss I received because I had no other objects to tie the moss to and didn't want it floating around in the tank. Hopefully they survive in the ziplock bag which I kept relatively moist. If there's a better way to store the moss, I'm hoping that someone reading this thread can share.

The planted package I purchased came with Vallisneria americana (Tape grass), lacy java fern, java fern, pellia, fissidens/phoenix moss, java moss, flame moss, and wendtii crypts. In addition to adding the plants above to my 20gallon, I also added a piece of driftwood to tie some of the moss to.

With about 3 weeks in, my tank is fully stocked. I will definitely need to remove some of the plants as they start growing.

Future items that I'm looking forward to and considering:

1) My dwarf hair grass hasn't started carpetting. I am considering adding root tabs to hopefully speed that along. so far, my dhg looks pretty sad but I'm hoping they will start to flourish as well.

2) Algae has started to form and I'm hoping I can slow it down by leaving the lights on for lesser periods of time. In addition, I've removed the lid from my tank which has made maintenance alot easier. In retrospect, I really shouldn't have bought the glass lids in the first place especially since they cost quite a bit.

3) Water parameters are looking great and the tank is close to being cycled if not already cycled. Transferring water from my already established tanks at my parents' house 30km away has helped speed along the process. Ammonia levels are close to 0ppm, Nitrites are relatively low between 0 to 0.25ppm, and nitrates are close to 0ppm. Nitrates should be higher but my water test was done a day after a water change and plants are probably taken whatever nitrates are left in. Ph is sitting about 7.2.

4) Excited to put some fish in. I'm probably going to bring one of my BN plecos up from one of my cichlid tanks. In addition, I'm thinking about purchasing a pair of Apisto Agassizi cichlids... can't wait to add some inhabitants.

That was quite a long post... as always, here are some pictures:


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