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Old 08-02-2013, 02:59 PM   #1
Fiala06
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[55 Gallon] My Biggest Tank Yet!


So I've had a 10 gallon for about a year now its been doing awesome! All my plants have survived and have only lost ghost shrimp. (Think my black phantoms ate them, never did find the culprit for the mass killing of shrimp)

Anyways Just picked up a 55 gallon! $30 came with tank, lights, giant hob filter, heater, food, and chemicals. Really excited about this as its my first big tank. So now the fun part, shopping and would like your guys input on it.

Photo off the craigslist ad:


So I want to do a heavily planted tank. Still deciding on fish but right now would like a school of coreys(15ish) , shrimp, snails and possibly some rams(Cichlids).

So ofc looking to do this as cheap as possible and yet as nice as can be.

So here is what I have so far, please chime in and let me know what you think.


Substrate:
CaribSea Eco-Complete 20-Pound Planted Aquarium, Black CaribSea Eco-Complete 20-Pound Planted Aquarium, Black



Lighting: Was thinking in stead of using the cover hood light leave it open and hang 3 of the clamp like style lights above it? The light fixture that came with it can only support up to 40watts and I would like for the lighting to be good. Think people recommend 3-5 watts per gallon if I recall.

So thinking of something like this:
Zoo Med Deluxe Porcelain Clamp Lamp with 8.5-Inch Dome, Black Zoo Med Deluxe Porcelain Clamp Lamp with 8.5-Inch Dome, Black



Help with bulb options? or if this is just a dumb idea...


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Old 08-02-2013, 03:45 PM   #2
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you can get something cheaper at canadian tire....then just use spiral compact fluorescents in them. make sure to use 6700k daylight bulbs though!!!
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Old 08-03-2013, 11:26 PM   #3
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you can get something cheaper at canadian tire....then just use spiral compact fluorescents in them. make sure to use 6700k daylight bulbs though!!!
Thanks for the info. I've talked with our fish shops around here and decided I'm going to buy a T5 light with 2 bulbs (120 watts). Seemed like a lot better idea talking with the guys.

Good news, the tank holds water!

After scrubbing and making sure everything I got is working and what it is, I've determined the filter that came with it is a joke. Some Aqua-Tech 30-60. So I plan on buying a Fluval 406 or possibly 306 after reading everyone's comments. Seems to be the filter of choice. Now to decide on 306 vs 406. Guess if I spend the extra money and get the 406 I'll be all set to upgrade later down the road?

Hoping to order most of it the end of this month.

Yes yes my office isn't finished yet. Its in the works...
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Old 08-04-2013, 12:57 AM   #4
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Have you considered Eheim as a filter option?

Also, check with hydroponic shops in your area. You may be able to find a T5H0 unit for significantly cheaper than any LFS.
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Old 08-04-2013, 02:37 AM   #5
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the eco complete has red/brown pieces in it as well. it doesn't show it anywhere and I don't know why. I wish it was all black BUT it still looks great in my tank, no worries.
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Old 08-04-2013, 02:44 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wrm130 View Post
Have you considered Eheim as a filter option?

Also, check with hydroponic shops in your area. You may be able to find a T5H0 unit for significantly cheaper than any LFS.
I did and watching some youtube vids about it seems to be more work. Example priming the tubes, changing filters.

Thanks for the idea bout a hydroponic shop!

Quote:
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the eco complete has red/brown pieces in it as well. it doesn't show it anywhere and I don't know why. I wish it was all black BUT it still looks great in my tank, no worries.
Yeah I seen it in a shop today. Its all right, I plan on mixing it with some plain black rock substrate. Thinking 40lbs of Eco and 20lbs of just plain black rock.
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Old 08-15-2013, 07:56 PM   #7
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Alright its coming along! 1 week ago I moved in my 3 black tip phantoms. They've been doing well!

So a few days ago ordered some plants from aquabid. The auction (Stuffs addicting watch out) Finally arrived today! So when home on my lunch to get them out of the mailbox so they don't bake all day and threw them into the tank.

The plants so far...
  • 12-15 stems of Rotala Rotundifolia
  • 3 stems 3-4 inch long of Eichhornia Diversifolia
  • 2x2 size Fissidens Fontanus
  • 1 Ludwigia Glandulosa
  • 10 stems of Marsilia Spp.
  • 1 Green Tiger Lily
  • portion of Blyxa Japonica

Also picked up a new light (T5) and pleco yesterday, getting along great.

Don't mind the pvc, it will be burried and blended in. It been put in to give them a place to hide while the plants grow. Just haven't had time....






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Old 08-16-2013, 02:00 AM   #8
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looks like a great start !!!!!!!
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Old 08-25-2013, 10:55 PM   #9
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So went backpacking this weekend and found all sorts of goodies..

Few manzanita tree limbs and river rocks!

Manzanita Brances


The one i chose to clean and put in the tank.



River rock (possbily look awesome making a cave cover in moss? Also the PVC pipes I covered with my substrate to provide hiding spots and possibly use as a prop for the rock. Need to attach some more to hide the fact its pvc but so far so good!
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Old 08-26-2013, 03:48 AM   #10
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And its done!

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Old 08-26-2013, 04:03 AM   #11
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Gotta love Craig's list. Nice deal you picked up.
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Old 08-27-2013, 12:38 AM   #12
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Quote:
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Gotta love Craig's list. Nice deal you picked up.
If I had a massive garage, I would own so many tanks right now. To many good deals!
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Old 09-04-2013, 02:40 PM   #13
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Ok so need some input, I'm ready to order some more plants. I would like to get some carpet plant this time. Especially for the right side of the tank. Something shortish and densest require a lot of maintenance.

Any suggestions????
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Old 09-19-2013, 04:56 PM   #14
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Well tanks been doing alright up until recently. Algae bloom. Been talking with the guys in the algae sub forum on how to take care of it. You can find it here. decreased the light time and installed flourish tabs.








I also recently added some more plants.
  • one amazon swordplant
  • lace java fern, about 10 leaves
  • 3 crypt lutea
  • 3 crypt wendtii
  • 2 crypt spiralis
  • 1 bunch brazillian penny wort, about 5 stems


Other good news, its my bday! So as a present to myself I just ordered a co2 system!

AQUATEK CO2 Regulator Mini



Empire 20oz CO2 Tank


Fluval Ceramic 88g-CO2 Diffuser - 3.1 Ounces


AQUATEK CO2-Proof Tubing 16 Feet
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Old 09-19-2013, 05:34 PM   #15
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Happy Birthday! Looks like it is coming along great.

Right now my favorite carpeting plant is Dwarf Sag, it grows and spreads fast and doesn't require much, if any maint. besides thinning it out and spreading the shoots where you want them. I also like S. repens but they are to new for me to have a firm opinion on them on growth yet.
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