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Old 03-30-2013, 03:41 AM   #1
MABJ
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Mark's Almost-ADA Build


Just as they do with many of my tanks, I've changed plans a lot here.

I've moved my build over to an interesting AquaTop build. The whole goal? Cost saving. The methods I chose literally save me half the price on an entire ADA setup, but again, I'm not exactly saying I won't ever set one up.

I'll detail the goals of this tank:

As always, I wanted to create an interesting build that has a nice scape and is easy to transport. This is being set up in lieu of my DBP 18'' which is sadly being torn down.

I decided on AquaTop's Mini S "Knockoff" which is a 3.4g tank high-clarity tank with similar dimensions. I decided on an Archaea light (ADA Recommended), Zoomed canister, flourite substate.

Flora: Mosses, crypts. Basically low light plants. I never aspire for too much, although I'd love to figure out a way to make a moss carpet in the middle.

Fauna: Snails andddd WAIT FOR IT!! Yep. Blue Diamonds. I'm really hoping to establish a good colony here.

The budget for this tank was ORIGINALLY $200. (I never include Fauna in tank budgets) but since I decided on $9 each shrimp, I decided I needed to shrink it.

I spent:
$50 for the tank + shipping
$35 on the light (Thanks CPDZeke)
$34 on the Filter
$16 on the substrate.
$02 on the Pre-Filter Sponge

All in all $137.

With the shrimp included, we can bring that to a $191.

But like I said, I never do, so pick whichever number you like. I think it was worth it. I'm hoping this aquarium grows in real well and really makes my neos happy.

Last edited by MABJ; 04-17-2013 at 01:30 AM.. Reason: .
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Old 03-30-2013, 04:15 AM   #2
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Subscribed and looking forward to the build and the answer to your substrate questions. Right now that's my major holdup...trying to decide what substrate to use. I was thinking Eco-Complete or Amazonia. Just afraid the ADA stuff will drop pH too low.

But anyways...this is your thread and build so forget my issues...on with your tank plans!!!
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Old 03-30-2013, 04:23 AM   #3
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Subscribed and looking forward to the build and the answer to your substrate questions. Right now that's my major holdup...trying to decide what substrate to use. I was thinking Eco-Complete or Amazonia. Just afraid the ADA stuff will drop pH too low.

But anyways...this is your thread and build so forget my issues...on with your tank plans!!!
Haha no worries! Thanks for being the first poster.

I'd try one of those, but they will drop it too low. I want it to sit right at 7 PH :/. Sigh. I guess we'll see what people recommend.
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Old 03-30-2013, 04:45 AM   #4
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I have the archaea 30cm in the FS section for 35, but we can work something out.
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Old 03-30-2013, 06:20 AM   #5
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The ZooMed 501 canister filter is a great little work horse, you will love it. I did get a extra wedge sponge filter for mine, that way I clean one sponge one week, then alternate to the other sponge on the next filter rinse.
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Old 03-30-2013, 07:11 AM   #6
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Check out my journal. I had a mini s with weeping moss as the carpet. I had the 30cm archaea light. It's the perfect light for a moss tank.
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Old 03-30-2013, 02:30 PM   #7
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The ZooMed 501 canister filter is a great little work horse, you will love it. I did get a extra wedge sponge filter for mine, that way I clean one sponge one week, then alternate to the other sponge on the next filter rinse.
Wow you're an active cleaner then! I almost never clean my filters. :p I probably should more often.

I have a 501 doing like 300% filtration on my Fluval spec + the original filter.

I think it is wonderful.
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Old 03-30-2013, 02:32 PM   #8
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Default Mark's first ADA

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Check out my journal. I had a mini s with weeping moss as the carpet. I had the 30cm archaea light. It's the perfect light for a moss tank.
I certainly will . What substrate did you use?

Also how did you carpet the moss? I was considering the Riccia stones ADG has.
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Old 03-30-2013, 03:12 PM   #9
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Congrats on settling on some plans for your tank MABJ!
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Old 03-30-2013, 07:21 PM   #10
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Default Mark's first ADA

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Congrats on settling on some plans for your tank MABJ!
Thanks! I haven't started a journal this early before but I'm just super excited to start and I have some questions that need answering
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Old 03-30-2013, 10:04 PM   #11
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I used some leftover aquasoil. I used mesh for the carpet. Slapped the moss down and tied it on with thread. Grew in nice.
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Old 03-30-2013, 10:06 PM   #12
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Default Mark's first ADA

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I used some leftover aquasoil. I used mesh for the carpet. Slapped the moss down and tied it on with thread. Grew in nice.
I noticed that in your thread haha. I'll have to consider it. I hadn't yet considered what SS mesh I'd use if I did yet.
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Old 03-30-2013, 10:39 PM   #13
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Good choice on tank!

For a small tank like this, trying out the up aqua shrimp sand would also be a nice option, since it is close to the price of a 3L bag of aquasoil.

The ricca stones I think would look nicer than the mesh and more natural I think. For moss, I also think weeping or taiwan moss would work.
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Old 03-31-2013, 12:39 AM   #14
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Default Mark's first ADA

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Good choice on tank!

For a small tank like this, trying out the up aqua shrimp sand would also be a nice option, since it is close to the price of a 3L bag of aquasoil.

The ricca stones I think would look nicer than the mesh and more natural I think. For moss, I also think weeping or taiwan moss would work.
Hmm I didn't exactly love the weeping moss look. It seemed to point upward a lot. I'll try out a couple different ones. I'd love to do mini fiss, but I doubt I can muster the patience to get it to carpet.
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Old 03-31-2013, 02:19 AM   #15
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^I thought you wanted a moss that pointed up for a carpet...

Any ways I'd suggest Fissidens Fontanus or flame moss. The flame will need regular trimming but it looks good when cut even. You know, you could always just go mini Xmas.
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