Beginning my first planted tank
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Old 10-13-2012, 03:06 AM   #1
Rcalhoun
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Beginning my first planted tank


Hi there, I'm a veteran reef keeper and had a friend tell me that keeping a planted nano tank is harder than a nano reef. I'm not one to judge, so I've decided to start one! After seeing some of the photos here I must say... Wow. The simplistic approach and naturalistic beauty of some of these tanks has me hooked. Only one problem; I don't know the first thing about freshwater planted tanks lol!

So, thought I'd share my trials here, seems like a great community and from what I've read so far, very helpful.

Couple things, Bear with me on updates and spelling... Everything's done via my phone. Second, I'm very knowledgable with the marine side of things, especially corals and marine diseases... It's my job actually . And lastly, please if you see me doing something that's bad... Speak up! I can use all the help I can get.

Today at the aquarium shop I work at I purchased a few things willy nilly, more impulse buys. I'm still deciding on what size aquarium to build. Yes, I'm building one. I have years of experience with aquarium construction and do have access to super cheap starfire glass. I'd like something no bigger than 5 gallons volume though. At the shop I picked up a few CO2 kits and spare parts. So, to start I grabbed this guy. Name:  ImageUploadedByTapatalk1350097092.814173.jpg
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It was the only system like this in the shop. Of course I waited to get home to open it... And this is what I find... What's missing here lol Name:  ImageUploadedByTapatalk1350097160.595836.jpg
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Also in my ignorance and excitement I grabbed these thinking I could use them... Name:  ImageUploadedByTapatalk1350097344.157407.jpg
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Well I realized that the batch of "spares" is for a different sized unit than the other starter kit I got. And after talking to the store owner he basically told me tough... So now I have no regulator. No refund either since it was opened... I'm hoping I can get something to work on one of the sizes of co2 canisters I have.

As for filtration I'm leaning towards a canister filter. I want to keep the in tank clutter to a minimum... I'm still researching viable units though, same as substrates... Very limited to what I can get locally so the webs going to be my shopping grounds.

Anyways, this post is long winded enough. I'm hoping to decide on dimensions tomorrow and post up some sketch-up plans soon!
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Old 10-13-2012, 04:19 AM   #2
Knotyoureality
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Unless you're just really hankering for a nano tank, I'd vote for going a bit bigger--even 10g is going to give you a *lot* more options on plants and wildlife. I love my mini-tanks, but it's tough finding good small pieces of rock and driftwood, naturally miniature leafed plants and/or keeping larger plants growing healthy but slowly enough not to outgrow the space too fast.
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Old 10-14-2012, 02:59 AM   #3
Rcalhoun
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True, I'm so used to the reef side of things I didn't think about the size of the plants.

I'm thinking of either going with a 24x12x10 tank or a 10x12x20 tank.

The first size would give me more real estate to place things, where as the second tank would allow me to have some taller plants... I don't know. I could always just go with a rimless 10G standard tank, 20x10x12 isn't a bad size.

I'm still hunting for the regulator for the Fluval CO2-88 system. I have everything but the regulator. and I don't really want to spend the money to buy the entire system again just for that one piece. Any suggestions?

Also, I've seen all these wicked cool shrimp that you guys use in these planted tanks... THAT intrigues me. I've been doing some reading online about the different requirements for each one. What is best, decide on livestock and plan the plant list around the fish/inverts? or vice a versa...
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Old 10-14-2012, 03:23 AM   #4
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That shop owner needs to give you a refund, or I would just stop shopping there. If a product has something missing, you should expect a refund, or else that is just a bad business.

I would go for the 24" it is much better for most fish since naturally they swim back and forth, not up and down. There is also more scaping area!
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Old 10-14-2012, 03:31 AM   #5
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yeah I know, the problem is he won't refund it...and I'm an employee there. its a bad situation trust me, I really wished I could find something else and fast lol.

that's 1 vote for the 24 long, I'm really leaning towards this size too...I could have the glass cut up by the weekend and all sealed up. any idea's on small external filters? I really like the look of the glass lily pipes...but wow...the price! I guess nice looking stuff doesn't come cheap huh.
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Old 10-14-2012, 03:39 AM   #6
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Check ebay, just search glass filter pipes and there are imitation ADAs for like $40 shipped. Just order now since they will most likely be coming from Asia. Also make sure the size will be god for your tank. I would order a smaller sized one. I will PM you one that would work great.

On here people like to use huge canisters for nanos. Not sure if it is for flow or that it adds more volume to the tank. I would say a classic would be best since they last forever. The 2215 would be good since people use the 2213 for like 5 gallons.

He probably thinks you stole it....
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Old 10-14-2012, 06:07 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rcalhoun View Post
True, I'm so used to the reef side of things I didn't think about the size of the plants.

I'm thinking of either going with a 24x12x10 tank or a 10x12x20 tank.

The first size would give me more real estate to place things, where as the second tank would allow me to have some taller plants... I don't know. I could always just go with a rimless 10G standard tank, 20x10x12 isn't a bad size.

I'm still hunting for the regulator for the Fluval CO2-88 system. I have everything but the regulator. and I don't really want to spend the money to buy the entire system again just for that one piece. Any suggestions?

Also, I've seen all these wicked cool shrimp that you guys use in these planted tanks... THAT intrigues me. I've been doing some reading online about the different requirements for each one. What is best, decide on livestock and plan the plant list around the fish/inverts? or vice a versa...

Plants don't really matter much for the different shrimp--big thing there is the water parameters. If you stick with the neocardinas, you won't have to worry about about it as much, they're pretty hardy. And you still have lots of color options: cherry, orange, yellow, green, brown, even some blue variants around. With plants, the main criteria is typically *light* and, occasionally, whether you're dosing c02. No matter what your ultimate set up, if you plan to have shrimp, plan to have some sort of moss--shrimp loooove moss, for the shelter and a great place to chow down on algae and biofilm.
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Old 10-16-2012, 12:05 AM   #8
Rcalhoun
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Well turns out I was given s 10 gallon today so I'm going to just use it. Now on to substrate and a filter.
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:14 AM   #9
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ada aquasoil or Azoo bed grower . . they are both great ! !
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