cycling for the newbie
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Old 07-16-2013, 04:48 AM   #1
macsmith777
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cycling for the newbie


Hi all, I am new to the boards and new to freshwater tanks. I have just begun to cycle (without fish) a 20g tank. I read, on this site I believe, that using some substrate, an old filter pad, etc from a healthy tank is a great way to speed things up. So.. Is there anyone out there ( I live in Westminster) that has some material to help a new guy out? I am feeling very new at this, so anyone local that could lend advice would be held in high esteem!

While we are at it, any advice on where to get rocks that are safe, or driftwood to start my aquascaping? I went to the Fish Den and looked at driftwood, holy expensive!

Thank you all! Mac
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:30 AM   #2
scotty b
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i am in sw denver. I can give you a bit of gravel from my filter. i know someone selling "iron wood" not cheep but a hair below retail
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:45 AM   #3
macsmith777
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Scotty, that would be great... I don't know much about the different wood options. (like if I were to buy a piece of driftwood from Fish Den or DFS, what would prevent it from simply floating in the tank? I am sure there is a method, but I don't know what it is yet) That said, I would be interested in checking out the ironwood. What is your availability? I assume you can PM here, so let me know what is convenient for you.. Thanks for your help/reply.
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:59 AM   #4
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most wood you will sink off the bat or with in a few hours, Are you setting up as planted tank?
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Old 07-16-2013, 06:16 AM   #5
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I intend to do a planted tank. I have a coralife 96w compact fluorescent light and have put in ecocomplete substrate mixed with gravel. So the basics are in. I put the tank together today and am starting a fish free cycling process. As I said, I am new to freshwater tanks (had a moderately successful reef a number of years back), so I am feeling my way along. No big rush, my hope is for a moderately planted tank with a few community fish as a practice/learning experience. The tank is only 20g to keep costs and workload reasonable as I learn, plus I already had a light that fit the length of the tank. It puts out a fair bit of light for this size tank, so I should not be too limited in what I can put in there plant wise.
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Old 07-16-2013, 06:23 AM   #6
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i can hook you up with some plants and clippings when you get the gravel, would you be free friday afternoon?
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Old 07-16-2013, 06:28 AM   #7
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I think that should be fine. I will pm you. Thanks for the help!
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Old 07-16-2013, 02:47 PM   #8
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I went out and found some branches from an old cotton wood tree, I kept it in a bucket for a month and whala, it sank lol.

Paulino gardens is a good place for rock as well. The Lace rock they have is safe (I would still advise testing it with vinegar) and its .50/lb compared to fish dens 2.99/lb. you just need to break apart the large rock for smaller pieces. Lava rock is also a safe rock for aquarium use. Just use a wire brush and water to clean it off. I would highly recommend you do NOT boil the rock, steam pockets and air pockets that are natural in the stone could literally cause it to explode under those temps.

I don't have any filter media just yet, I am prepping a pad for a breeding tank so it will be a couple weeks until I can put other filter media in its place.
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Old 07-16-2013, 03:22 PM   #9
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another lfs u want to check out is about fish on 72nd and fed, theyre prices are pretty reasonable compared to other lfs.
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Old 07-16-2013, 04:11 PM   #10
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Thanks all, I will check out Paulino's today as it is not far from me.. I thought Fish on Federal was closed down (I went by a while ago and it seemed that way, but maybe they moved) I will check that out too as it is, sort of, on my way. I appreciate all the help from you guys. I will take some pics as my project progresses. Right now it is a mostly empty tank with 3ish inches of substrate. I am going to add some more though so I can do a little simple terracing. Thanks again!
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Old 07-16-2013, 06:28 PM   #11
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theyre still opened as far as i know
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Old 07-17-2013, 04:15 AM   #12
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about fish moved 3 blocks its still around
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Old 07-17-2013, 04:19 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scotty b View Post
about fish moved 3 blocks its still around
the owner has had quite a few fish stores. He will always be somewhere or another. His last store was called "shermans tank" it was off 84th. Every several years or so the store moves.
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Old 07-18-2013, 06:04 PM   #14
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Found it! They are still open at 72nd and Federal. Just have a very non-flashy store front and the businesses on either side are gone and empty so I assumed. And we all know what that does.. Scotty, I will see you tomorrow. Text me when you would like to meet..
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