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Old 06-11-2013, 11:55 PM   #31
jarury
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Would you recommend the 501? I've been thinking about getting one but haven't decided yet
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Old 06-12-2013, 01:00 AM   #32
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Would you recommend the 501? I've been thinking about getting one but haven't decided yet
Definitely if your tank is about 2-7 gallons. Some will say it is too small for a 5.5 or 6 gallon but I can tell you that it's worked well for me for over 4-5 years with no issues what so ever. Very quiet as well, I usually can't have a tank in a bedroom but this is and doesn't bother me at all (very light sleeper).

The only reason I would not recommend it is if you have a nice stand. My nano's have never had a good stand so putting a filter under has never been an option. It's also a pain to run anything inline as it will be visible as well. I did a DIY inline heater on another tank and though it cleaned up the tank, it had to sit out in the open. If you want to take advantage of hiding a filter in a stand, run inline equipment and the like, I would go with something else. The hose size is odd for lily pipes as well.

Sorry to be lengthy, I love it, many don't but mine has been absolutely flawless.
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Old 06-15-2013, 10:17 PM   #33
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Definitely if your tank is about 2-7 gallons. Some will say it is too small for a 5.5 or 6 gallon but I can tell you that it's worked well for me for over 4-5 years with no issues what so ever. Very quiet as well, I usually can't have a tank in a bedroom but this is and doesn't bother me at all (very light sleeper).

The only reason I would not recommend it is if you have a nice stand. My nano's have never had a good stand so putting a filter under has never been an option. It's also a pain to run anything inline as it will be visible as well. I did a DIY inline heater on another tank and though it cleaned up the tank, it had to sit out in the open. If you want to take advantage of hiding a filter in a stand, run inline equipment and the like, I would go with something else. The hose size is odd for lily pipes as well.

Sorry to be lengthy, I love it, many don't but mine has been absolutely flawless.
Thanks! My stand is not nice by any standards its an old solid wood tv stand I look at the tank not the stand as much lol. I will be buying one in the next few weeks.
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Old 06-16-2013, 01:36 AM   #34
Padraig Pearse
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I'm pretty bummed out that this scape is no more. It looked like a crisp autumn day in the woods. Can't wait to see what you do next.
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Old 06-18-2013, 12:51 AM   #35
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I'm pretty bummed out that this scape is no more. It looked like a crisp autumn day in the woods. Can't wait to see what you do next.
Funny you say that, I am just about to update this.
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Old 06-18-2013, 01:24 AM   #36
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So, tear down...Redo. Bladderwort was not worth fighting. I bought some shrimp with a plant in it, thinking the plant looked cool, planting it and thus taking over my tank. Should have been more careful, lesson learned.

My Betta obviously died if you read the thread. Sucks he jumped as he was reaching 3-3.5 years old and I would have rather seen him die naturally. I guess every one has to go some time, RIP Bobby Flay the Betta Fish.

I made some changes, for obvious reasons. First off, I basically had to get rid of everything. I did keep the very tops of a few stems and I hope I got ever single piece of bladderwort off. If it comes back, I will drain the tank and throw it out the window. I also cleaned the filter out but didn't put new media in. Again, if bladderwort comes back, tank goes out window. I will buy an Aquatop tank and move on.

I am trying to do a low tech "mini dutch" tank this time. I got rid of the drift wood and have just a flat substrate. I also changed out the substrate. I have mostly Flourite Black with a 1/4 in of Miracle Grow Potting Soil. This has worked really well for me in the past. Using just a little soil doesn't have some of the downsides I have had using a soil or MTS tank. However, it seems to help enough to be worth it. I have done this about 3-4 times and have a 100% success rate.

Lastly, I have joked that my light setup is a home grown ADA solar setup. I spent today making a new fixture using the same light. I ditched my plastic housing for a sheet metal one. I am the type of person who just measures once and goes with everything on a project like this, learn, redo later. Moving into my first home 6 months ago, I lack things like a bench vice, drill press and a band saw, all tools I am used to having around. I would have used thicker metal but I couldn't. Actually, I didn't have a workbench and used only vice grips, a hand drill and a hand riviter to do the whole thing, drilling on an old 2x4. I will likely redo this but I think it could work in flat black. I am planning a new mounting system as well but my structure is too flimly for what I planned. Light will likely be redone in like 6 months, lol, whenever I really feel like it. It does seem brighter so I hope to not get algae. If so, I saved my old stuff, or I can paint the inside black...or just redo it all.


I know that was a long post. I also know my tank is pretty sparse right now. I am trying a few foreground plants and just adding stems when I feel. This will be like 90% stems I am guessing.

Lastly, I have 7 feather fin rainbows from my other tank. I know it's likely too small for that but they seem fine. I will likely just see if they work or give them away (please give me advice if I am abusing them in such a small tank). The were not active in my 20 long so I feel it's fine, what do I know though?


Enough talk, here are some pics.


Home grown ADA fixture to the MAX (My fiance laughed at me BTW lol)


Needs more plants and a foreground...


OVT....Let me come by and get a few more plants off you, I will give you some R. Butterfly if you don't have it already...

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Old 07-06-2013, 07:41 PM   #37
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Small update...

I really haven't done much to this tank. I am just adding a few plants as I get them. I really am not trying to "scape" this tank, I think it will be hardscape free. I may add that branch in because it fits the tank well but makes trimming a challenge. I am far from where I want to be, just haven't really put much effort into it. That is why I love this setup though, I really don't do anything and it always works.

The only thing that sucks is that the R. Butterfly is coloring up all that well. It's weird because the lower leafs will become fairly red but the top is green. As it grows, the green turns red but the new growth is green again. Not that I expected a vibrant red in a low tech tank, it is the least colorful red plant I have had thus far. Nothing is blood red but most get a nice burnt orange at the least.

Plans are to just add more plants as I get them. It's going to be a collectoritis type tank so I will likely put 3-5 stems of a bunch of plants, rather than fill it out with a small amount of plant types. That's where low tech is fun, try just about anything and see what happens.





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Old 07-06-2013, 10:12 PM   #38
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You should probably put a cover over that tank so that the light bulbs don't fall out or get hit by water and cause a problem.

Good luck with it, Braden
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Old 07-06-2013, 10:55 PM   #39
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You should probably put a cover over that tank so that the light bulbs don't fall out or get hit by water and cause a problem.

Good luck with it, Braden
Thank you for your concerns. I have been running this light for around 5 years like this so my concerns are minimal. It can't fall in the tank and the filter doesn't cause direct splashes on the bulb. Just evaporated water which everyone gets when using CLF bulbs without an aquarium specific light fixture.
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Old 07-23-2013, 06:35 PM   #40
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A bit of an update...I honestly haven't really figured out what I want to do with this tank, just adding plants I either really like or plants I have always wanted to try.

There are two things I really don't like right now. First, I have way too much going on in the foreground. I don't know how I will deal with it. I don't expect the glosso to actually carpet in these conditions but it may or may not look decent if I just trim it. If not, that will solve the issue. I really like the Riccia but I don't want it solely for a foreground just yet. It is the easiest plant to grow ever, haha, so I can fill in the whole front in a week if I change my mind with no issue.

The other thing I don't like is the large piece of driftwood. It was the smallest peice I could find that had some character but I can't find a way to make it look good. I only put it in because I want to try Fissiden. I will swap it out with something smaller.

After that, I will start choosing where I ultimately want everything. I will likely thin out some of each plant as I will likely add a lot more species. I also replaced my Betta with a new one. He was camera shy today.





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Old 07-24-2013, 04:50 PM   #41
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A bit of an update...I honestly haven't really figured out what I want to do with this tank, just adding plants I either really like or plants I have always wanted to try.

Looking good, following !

I'm new here and new to planted aquariums, so Iim just getting up to speed.

I liked reading this thread and watching the evolution (or de-evolution) of your tank.

I also really liked the previous version of your tank, with the wood, I would love to build a similar low-tech environment in my future 2-Gal nano shrimp tank that I will be scaping on top of CaribSea Eco-Complete Planted Black. Not sure if I will bottom it with soil or not.

Would you mind listing what plants you had/have in your tank for me? I am not totally familiar with all species yet and want to emulate tanks I like that will be successful for a beginner like me. I am especially interested in the foreground grasses and /or mosses.

Keep it up
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Old 07-24-2013, 06:08 PM   #42
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Would you mind listing what plants you had/have in your tank for me? I am not totally familiar with all species yet and want to emulate tanks I like that will be successful for a beginner like me. I am especially interested in the foreground grasses and /or mosses.
I appoligize I don't have good editing software to make a this easier but I will do my best to give you an idea:


In the background, left to right:
Rotala Colorata
Rotala sp. 'Bangladesh'
Rotala macrandra-Hard to see (Not recommended)
Not sure what the grass looking plant is
rotala macrandra v. 'narrow leaf'/Rotala Magenta-Hard tos ee (not recommended)

Midgound:
Sunset Hygrophila
Alternanthera reineckii
Tiger Lotus

Foreground:
Sold to me as Helanthium tenellum, commonly called Echinodorus tenellus

I would say all these plants are good for a nano with decent light. Most of the colorful plants don't need much light to have decent color.
Some other good options would be rotala indica, rotala sp. red, limnophila aromatica, hygro compacta for some plants that have some color. Almost all green plants can deal with not a ton of light.
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Old 07-24-2013, 06:21 PM   #43
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I also want to add, don't be afraid to add plants that people say need high light. I have surprised myself more than a few times with certain plants over the years that actually did quite well without CO2 or high light. Some will work, some won't so don't go buy some super rare, high priced stems but if you see something and like it, give it a try.
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Old 08-13-2013, 10:09 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by talontsiawd View Post
I also want to add, don't be afraid to add plants that people say need high light. I have surprised myself more than a few times with certain plants over the years that actually did quite well without CO2 or high light. Some will work, some won't so don't go buy some super rare, high priced stems but if you see something and like it, give it a try.
Thanks for the listing, and the encouragement!
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Old 08-22-2013, 07:14 PM   #45
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Small upadate. First and foremost, I obviously killed of my Riccia and just redid that today. I had some hair algae and treated with H202, knowing that the Riccia would suffer. Didn't have enough to redo for awhile. Also, just trimmed, didn't clean the glass etc. Still need to figure out a plan for the right side, I may or may not get a smaller piece of driftwood. Tank hasn't got much love of lately but still keeps on chugging on it's own.

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