Setting up a tank (a how to, sorta)
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Old 11-27-2011, 07:01 AM   #1
mordalphus
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Setting up a tank (a how to, sorta)


Ok, so I was setting up a new tank and decided to document the steps I take.

I've been using this method for the past 6 months or so, and a modified version for over a year. This is my first time using the AKADAMA double red line soil, but the soil doesn't matter. It's the method that is important.

Also, the UGF is built by me, according to my specifications, it works for me, but you can also buy a UGF or something similar to what I made, however the PVC UGF is extremely simple and cheap to buy (less than 8 dollars).

So here are the steps:

First, the empty tank:


As you can see, it's a standard 20 long, totally empty!

Now I position the UGF, which is a very small version, made of PVC, with holes along the inside edge of the curve. The intake of the canister filter goes into a 1/2 inch quick connect fitting.



Next, I fill in the area that will be sucking up into the canister with seachem matrix. Any biomedia will be fine, but I use seachem matrix because of the varying size and shape of the media, and the fact that it fits nicely with each piece it really helps a lot to keep soil out of the UGF holes.



So next I put in some special ingredients, some are secret! But it's mostly old sea mud, bacteria, and food for the bacteria. I only put it in the area where the UGF wont suck it in.



Next, it's time for the substrate! I fill in the entire tank to be level. So since the area above the UGF is already about 2 inches tall with the matrix and UGF, I fill in another inch over that, and so I end up with about 3 inches of substrate around the tank. This will keep the buffering for several months if not years.



All that's left is to fill it full of water and turn on the filters! My way of filling with water without cloudiness is to put the plastic bag the substrate came in on top of the substrate, then use my filler right on top of it. This filler is a 1/4 inch airline tube hooked to my sink, and the end of it is diffused by a chunk of poret foam, and placed into a bowl.



DONE!

Only thing left to do is cycle the tank and put some shrimp in, woohoo!

Thanks for reading, I hope this helps some people out with setting up their own shrimp tanks!
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Old 11-27-2011, 12:12 PM   #2
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Great post Mordalphus!
I am going to try this.
good step by step depiction thank you!
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Old 11-27-2011, 12:40 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mordalphus View Post
All that's left is to fill it full of water and turn on the filters! My way of filling with water without cloudiness is to put the plastic bag the substrate came in on top of the substrate, then use my filler right on top of it. This filler is a 1/4 inch airline tube hooked to my sink, and the end of it is diffused by a chunk of poret foam, and placed into a bowl.

Great idea using the bag to further increase the water spread surface area. I used everything except the bag when filling up my flourite and it still became murky. Nice step-by-step instructions!
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Old 11-27-2011, 03:20 PM   #4
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When using the substrate as a 'pre-filter' of sorts like this do you notice that the canister filter gets dirty and has to be cleaned more or less frequently?

I am considering using the Azoo UGF pipes and doing something similar but since it won't be my tank (but I will be the one to maintain the canister on it) I want it to be able to go quite a while between having to open up the canister. I will be using an eheim classic 2213 most likely. On a related note would a pre-filter like the jaqno with certain media help increase the time between canister filter cleanings if need be?
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Old 11-27-2011, 04:30 PM   #5
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wow, i've always wanted to try the akadama soil- i have fluval stratum and ada now, but ADA soil is pain in the butt- its been cloudy water for the past 2 weeks.. omg
it will be so exciting if akadama soil works out!!
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Old 11-27-2011, 05:08 PM   #6
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wow, i've always wanted to try the akadama soil- i have fluval stratum and ada now, but ADA soil is pain in the butt- its been cloudy water for the past 2 weeks.. omg
it will be so exciting if akadama soil works out!!
A lot of people on shrimpnow use akadama. If it suits your needs I don't see what the risk/worry would be about using it.
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Old 11-27-2011, 05:17 PM   #7
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woot one of our shrimp guru's teaching us how to setup a pro tank!


Curious tho, do vac the substrate? or not need to touch it?

Will follow this as i want to setup a shrimp tank also!
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Old 11-27-2011, 05:44 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madness View Post
When using the substrate as a 'pre-filter' of sorts like this do you notice that the canister filter gets dirty and has to be cleaned more or less frequently?

I am considering using the Azoo UGF pipes and doing something similar but since it won't be my tank (but I will be the one to maintain the canister on it) I want it to be able to go quite a while between having to open up the canister. I will be using an eheim classic 2213 most likely. On a related note would a pre-filter like the jaqno with certain media help increase the time between canister filter cleanings if need be?

Canister gets dirty for the first day, so i fill it full of filter pads for the first day, then I switch it out to biomedia. I do have a prefilter on this canister as well, and also a purigen reactor on the return. I have the prefilter so that I don't get my big eheim clogged up (running a 2217 on this one).
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Old 11-27-2011, 05:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Naekuh View Post
woot one of our shrimp guru's teaching us how to setup a pro tank!


Curious tho, do vac the substrate? or not need to touch it?

Will follow this as i want to setup a shrimp tank also!
Do not vacuum the substrate, shrimp are not that dirty, and the filter will remove poop and excess food through the UGF. Vacuuming will remove substrate and also make a very big mess, while at the same time damaging the bacteria colonies which have made their home there.
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Old 11-27-2011, 06:10 PM   #10
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can we see that purigen reactor please
Or is it that Jebo Circular container i saw in the SnS?
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Old 11-27-2011, 06:20 PM   #11
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This isn't the exact one, it's the grandfather to the one I just set up, but you get the idea, clear cylinder, water flows down the middle tube to the bottom, which causes the purigen to become fluidized, then the scrubbed water exits at the top.

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Old 11-28-2011, 05:32 AM   #12
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Awesome Liam! I really like the DIY PVC UFG. If you don't mind, where did you find the PVC 1/2 connect that allows you to click the Eheim Tube to the PVC UGF?

Did you put the PVC UGF in the back covered up with Seachem Matrix to try to slow the degrading process of the Akadama Soil? I've read that Akadama Soil, and ADA AS, degrades super fast when used with an UGF.

I'm assuming because your PVC UGF is sucking from the inside with the Seachem Matrix covering it, the inward suction will most likely leave the Akadama Soil undisturbed which should extend the live of the soil.
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Old 11-28-2011, 05:34 AM   #13
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Dude we need more of these kinda of threads.
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Old 11-28-2011, 05:51 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ch3fb0yrdee View Post
Awesome Liam! I really like the DIY PVC UFG. If you don't mind, where did you find the PVC 1/2 connect that allows you to click the Eheim Tube to the PVC UGF?

Did you put the PVC UGF in the back covered up with Seachem Matrix to try to slow the degrading process of the Akadama Soil? I've read that Akadama Soil, and ADA AS, degrades super fast when used with an UGF.

I'm assuming because your PVC UGF is sucking from the inside with the Seachem Matrix covering it, the inward suction will most likely leave the Akadama Soil undisturbed which should extend the live of the soil.
The fitting is called a "1/2 inch quick connect" fitting, found at home depot. They're in with the brass plumbing fittings near the toilet aisle. They are 1/2 inch threads on one side, and the quick connect fitting on the other. The eheim intake tube fits exactly snug into it. I just used it because I didn't want to use a barbed fitting and have the ugly hose going into the tank.

i put the UGF in the back covering roughly 1/3rd of the tank in the hopes that the front part would become infested with anaerobic bacteria which would digest nitrates, and that yes the life of the substrate would be extended.

i'm in the unique position that my tap water is basically RO (20ppm, 0gh/0kh, 6.5-7 pH), and that I don't rely entirely on the substrate to buffer my water.

So far with akadama my pH in the tank is 5.5, which is .5 degrees higher than my amazonia and africana tanks. I'm not sure what kind of shrimp I'll put back into this tank, probably CRS or CBS, maybe move all of my taiwan bee hybrids into this tank to separate them from the pure taiwan bees. So many choices!
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Old 11-28-2011, 06:36 AM   #15
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Legit! Thanks for the info on the quick connects. I've been having problems figuring out all these connects, but your tip is super helpful.

I know some breeders are kinda secretive about their tanks, but I was wondering what do you use to bring up your gH, since it's at 0. My guess would be Mosura Mineral Plus, but just wanted to confirm.
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