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Old 12-01-2014, 05:16 AM   #1
BigMO
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10g low tech, 10g high tech, Paludarium


Hello TPT! I'm starting this journal to help track the progress on my tanks. I wish I would have started one of these a long time ago.



12/26/2014



2/1/2015


3/1/2015






12/27/2014


2/1/2015



3/1/2015

Last edited by BigMO; 03-03-2015 at 02:22 AM.. Reason: updates
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Old 12-01-2014, 05:55 AM   #2
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...

Last edited by BigMO; 03-20-2015 at 06:04 AM.. Reason: .
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Old 12-01-2014, 06:23 AM   #3
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A couple other projects that keep me occupied:





Video of the Plaudarium: http://youtu.be/2o69WYWUzmQ
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Old 12-01-2014, 08:28 AM   #4
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Do you have anything on the build for the Plaudarium? That tank is amazing and it's crazy that it's that new. Great video. I've really been wanting to build one of these but I don't even know where to start.
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Old 12-01-2014, 08:53 AM   #5
Dan110024
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If this starts me off on a plaudarium.... You, sir, are to blame.
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Old 12-01-2014, 05:02 PM   #6
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Thanks for the comments guys.

There are a few videos floating around that explain how to use expanding foam to construct the background. Basically you use to foam to set your wood/cork bark to the back glass. After the foam dries and hardens give it a generous coating of black silicone. While the silicone is wet take some coco coir or peat and stick it on there. As for the reservoir, I used hydroton as the false bottom. It acts as a bio filter as well as raising the floor up so the plants dont get flooded. The only thing I've had trouble with is the pump clogging with sediment. I've tried wrapping it in bio bags, mesh, etc but over time it will still clog. I feel like this is an inevitability. I am moving in a month or so and I'm tearing it down and starting over, drilling out the bottom and making a sump to eliminate the clogged pump issue. As far as the fog goes its a $20 ebay ultrasonic humidifier modified with a fitting and hose that runs to the top of the tank. It comes on twice a day for half an hour.

I've had mold outbreaks, insect hatches, and clogged pumps, but this is my first palu so its to be expected. Things I've learned:
Less light is better. Terrestrial mosses (at least the ones I've collected) don't require high light, in fact they don't like it. Since I've backed the light down the moss has thrived.

Air circulation is key. Some mold is good, but at a certain point it becomes distracting. I use a couple pc fans to help regulate humidity.

Pumps at the lowest point in the reservoir WILL clog. Its just a fact... Best route is going with a sump. This allows for higher water quality/ less hassle.


Any other questions just ask. This palu has been a great learning experience. When I have company over they will undoubtedly gather around the palu and get lost for a while. Its a great conversation starter! Really a piece of nature in the living room. Just think it through so you can get it right the first time. It took me a couple tries to get it to work properly. Measure twice, cut once.
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Old 12-02-2014, 05:25 AM   #7
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Thanks for tips BigMO! That's all really good advice.
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Old 12-27-2014, 04:18 AM   #8
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Tore down the 20g tank in preparation to move. Also tore down the newly dirted tank and decided to use aqua soil instead. Sold some of the plants, used the rest to stock the two 10g tanks.

One of my 10g tanks I de-rimmed. I have to say the rimless look is fantastic. I'll be going rimless from now on. I think a 10g tank is the largest I'd de-rim myself. A solid low iron rimless tank is in my future. Any way here is the tank:






Current Satellite+ 18"
Sunsun canister
Excel, EI dry ferts
Marfied Controsoil (ex-fine)
Lava Rock


Crypts
Ludwigia Repens
Java Fern
Pennywort
Hydrocotyle sp. Japan
Dwarf Sag
DHG



The other 10g is more high tech. I started it out with the big rock from my 20g, I think it was a good layout, but I decided against it in the end. Here is what it looked like a couple days after set up:







I decided to remove the large stone a couple days ago in order to open up the layout a bit more. The large stone was to dominant, this way there will be much more room for the plants to take over:




Finnex Planted+ 20"
Ehiem 2215
Pressurized CO2
EI dosing
Controsoil
Local river rock
(these red rocks are about 1/1,000 in a local stream, took a while to find so many of them)

Glosso
Hygro Polysperma
Hygro Siamensis
P. Kawagonum
S. Repens
Dwarf Sag
Marseila Crenata
Elatine Triandra
Rotala Mini Butterfly
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Old 01-07-2015, 03:37 AM   #9
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Update on my 10g high tech. Algae is setting in! Green algae on the glass and plenty of diatoms. Not too discouraged, hoping the tank will balance out over the next couple months as the plants take over. I'm performing two 50% water changes each week and dosing EI ferts at half strength. Lots of pearling, plants are doing very well under the heavy coat of diatoms!


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Old 01-08-2015, 01:05 AM   #10
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I am starting to get frustrated!! It is aggravating spending the time and energy I've invested in this tank only to have a huge mess on my hands. I know these tanks arent easy to maintain, especially the smaller tanks, but I see people out there with clean, healthy aquariums and I wonder 'How the heck do they do it?' I follow the guidelines, ie. good cleaning practice, good lighting (20" planted+), pressurized co2, quality substrate (marfied controsoil), excessive filtration (ehiem 2215), yet my tank suffers.

I manually remove as much of the algae as possible daily. When I do water changes (50% every couple days) I vacuum the substrate making sure to get as much mulm as I can. I clean the filter once a week and make sure not to touch bio media. I dose EI at 1/2 strength. I use tap water that I let sit for a few days, to which I add the recommended amount of Prime. I inject co2 at a rate to which my fish are on the verge of death, the plants pearl like crazy. All of this; and I cant see leaves that are only two days old because they are absolutely covered in a thick brown goo...

Does anyone have any advice for me as to what I can do to get through this cycle period? The diatoms are thick, and everywhere. Its getting to the point of which I am no longer able to keep the plants healthy. Before long they will succumb to all sorts of algae as growth slows and they're health begins to decline. If anybody reading this has any sound advice, I would welcome it at this time. I have not asked for help thus far, assuming the answer will be 'new tank syndrome, give it time'.
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Old 01-08-2015, 01:43 AM   #11
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I would dial back the light and ease it up slowly. Also add some fast growing floaters like anarchris.
Add more plants.

Bump: Oh yeah hang in there. If you find a plant that does well for you get more of those.
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Old 01-19-2015, 06:46 PM   #12
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^ Thanks for the tips. Diatoms seem to be at a stable level currently in that tank, neither increasing or decreasing, which is a good sign.

Heres an update on my low tech 10g. Added a few Bucephalandra species as well as 30 or so cherry shrimp. The Nerites have been keeping the diatoms in check and they are on their way out!



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Old 02-02-2015, 05:36 AM   #13
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Update on both tanks:

Still a constant battle with diatoms in my higher light tank. It's not much to look at, but in a few months I hope I can beat this brown stuff and this tank will really shine! The plants are growing well, but so are the diatoms. No livestock yet. I really need to get some amanos and otos in here but they are not in stock this time of year where I live.




I stocked the rimless 10g with Cherry shrimp a couple weeks back. They are doing great, started with around 30 and I have at least 5 females that are expecting. I got another needle valve and this tank runs a very small amount of co2 through a GLA diffuser. The plants look great and theres not too much algae to speak of. I really dig this tank, cant wait til its a jungle. I got another set of lily pipes and it finishes the look nicely. I made black backgrounds for both tanks and I think I'll keep them this way for now.




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Old 02-02-2015, 01:21 PM   #14
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I have this diatom problem all the time in new dirted tanks. I have lots of theories about what is at the root of the problem but in the end, a couple of months unfortunately, it goes away. It seems like one day I open the filter for its weekly cleaning and I find it no longer needs cleaning. Then it is just over. Months go by and I don’t clean the filter at all.

Looking forward to seeing the Paludarium again !
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Old 02-03-2015, 02:54 AM   #15
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If you really want to fix up your algae there is a few things you can do, Increase the flow in your tank by adding a small circulation pump, A 600LPH circulation pump should be perfect for a 10g, By doing this it will help the plants to take up more nutrients.


Also you can change 20-30% of your plants to fast growing stem plants, I seen that you have hygro polysperma just keep propagating this and you should be fine.


The last one is to have 70%+ of the tank covered in plants, If you can do this it should kill your algae.

Hope this helps.
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