New 125 Gallon Low Tech Planted Discus Tank - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-04-2016, 11:01 PM Thread Starter
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New 125 Gallon Low Tech Planted Discus Tank

First and foremost, I am a new member and this is my first post!!

I have been on/off/on/off... in the aquarium hobby for years. I have had everything from a community tank, Discus Tank and even a Salt Water FOWLR tank, but never a planted tank. I was out of the hobby for years focusing on other stuff. I started to get the bug again after I finished my basement and put a nice 10' bar in it. So enough about that, details are below of my new setup.

Tank Information
125 Gallon(72" x 18" x 23")

Substrate
hth Pool Filter Sand

Filter
Fluval FX4

Heaters
2 Eheim Jager 300 W

Lights
Stock Lights - for now.


So the plan for the tank is a Low Tech Planted Discus Tank. I know with low tech I am restricted to certain plants. With it eventually being a Discus tank and needing the temperature between 82 - 84 deg. F, I am even restricted even further with plant selection. I do not plan on dosing with CO2 but adding nutrients as needed.

After I got the tank up and running I started an fish less Ammonia cycle for about 2 - 3 weeks. So I thought I was all set after the ammonia dropped to 0 ppm. I started dosing the ammonia to 5 ppm and 12 hours later it would drop to 0 ppm. I tested Nitrites every night waiting for it to drop to 0 ppm. Then the day finally came so I did a 50% water change. Two days later I went out and bought some fish, 20 to be exact. Neon, Bush Nose and Bloodfin Tetras and two Albino Corys. All were pretty small because I did not want to overload the filter. Even after being in the hobby for years, we all make mistakes. As I was testing the water I forgot to shake the chemical bottles. So my conscious decision to NOT sacrifice fish to cycle the tank was all for not, all but 6 fish survived 7 days.

I am ready to buy some new lights and defiantly want LED lights. I was leaning toward two 36" Finnex Planted+ 24/7, but now researching the Fluval Fresh & Plant 2.0. As I said it will eventually be a Low Tech Discus tank but I would not want to limit myself if I decide to go with a couple medium light plants. After researching both lights, they each have positives and negatives. I have read the Finnex build quality can be spotty and remote has issues at times. The Fluval touch power button can be trickey and the expensive WiFi option has issues as well. For two Fluval's and eventually the WiFi option would be about 2x expensive then the Finnex option. I plan on purchasing lights in the next couple of weeks, suggestions are welcomed!!!


Progress pictures are attached.

Day One nothing exciting but I did got overboard on the depth of the sand. I removed a lot of it and max depth in any location is 2".

Day 30, The scaping is going to change. I have some new driftwood that will be arriving tomorrow so most of the rocks will be removed to make room for the driftwood. I will post updated pics next week. Constructive criticism is always welcome!
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Last edited by ScottR88; 03-28-2017 at 02:59 AM. Reason: Typo on Tank deminsions
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-04-2016, 11:16 PM
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Awesome I'm in the middle of setting up a 180 g planted discus tank

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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-04-2016, 11:30 PM
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Welcome. Looks like you have the makings of a very nice tank there.

I've never kept Discus, but really enjoy following the tanks of those who do.

Looking forward to following this build. Keep up with the posting and pictures.

Good luck and I hope all goes well and as planned.


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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-05-2016, 12:02 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by II Knucklez II View Post
Awesome I'm in the middle of setting up a 180 g planted discus tank

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I checked out your 180 gallon and is looks real nice. What lights do you have on the 180?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greggz View Post
Welcome. Looks like you have the makings of a very nice tank there.

I've never kept Discus, but really enjoy following the tanks of those who do.

Looking forward to following this build. Keep up with the posting and pictures.

Good luck and I hope all goes well and as planned.
Not in a rush, so slow and steady before I spend the big $$ on the Discus. Would rather concentrate on growing the plants first before I start adding them.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-05-2016, 12:08 AM
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I have 24/7 planted plus. I like to be able to see the tank at all times of the day not just for 8 hours.
I will be doing an update on it soon. Plants have grown a lot plus I added more

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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-05-2016, 12:11 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by II Knucklez II View Post
I have 24/7 planted plus. I like to be able to see the tank at all times of the day not just for 8 hours.
I will be doing an update on it soon. Plants have grown a lot plus I added more

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Good plant growth and no issues with the 2' depth using the lights? I am torn between the Finnex 24/7 and the Fluval 2.0.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-07-2016, 03:06 AM
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Good plant growth and no issues with the 2' depth using the lights? I am torn between the Finnex 24/7 and the Fluval 2.0.
ya really good but I have mostly low light plants so its slow and most of my plants are mid level in the tank. As far as at the 2' for carpet plants I wouldn't be able to tell you.
I'm actually battling a little algae right now so I'm thinking of putting a timer to turn the light off for an hour or two during its peak output to see if that helps. I read some where that the light keeps its time even when off so that would be great but lets see if that's true.


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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 02:31 PM Thread Starter
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It has been a long road to finally add some Discus to the tank. Below are some pics of the evaluation, I still wanted to keep with a low tech setup so the plants are not as big as I would like them. Then again the Discus are the focus not the plants.


Tank pic dates in order:
1/2017
3/2017
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 03:20 PM
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Beautiful discus! Looks like you have some swords, which will get huge in no time. I think things will look even better when it all fills in.

I did notice you have a 15' tank though! (172" in the first post hahah)


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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 04:01 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Freemananana View Post
Beautiful discus! Looks like you have some swords, which will get huge in no time. I think things will look even better when it all fills in.

I did notice you have a 15' tank though! (172" in the first post hahah)
Ha you are right.. .too funny... it is appx 72" long!!! That would make it about a 310 gallon tank!
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 06:06 PM
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Yeah! I knew, it just had me entertained. That is a lot of discus though. Is it 13? I think that's what I counted.


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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 06:40 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah! I knew, it just had me entertained. That is a lot of discus though. Is it 13? I think that's what I counted.
Yes there are currently 13 in there. A local breeder in Cincinnati is getting out of the hobby. Therefore I had to buy 8 red turqs about 3" each, 1 checkerboard and 4 rafflasia mixes. I plan on selling 5 of the red turqs soon.

I have 1 Fluval fx4 and 1 Plen Plax 1500 and I am doing a 25% water change per day.
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 07:32 PM
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I do believe that is a lot of discus, more than I had planned for my 125 when I was contemplating it. I don't know that I could muster a 25% water change a day with my current setup though. That'd be too inconvenient! I do hope you have some sort of quick drain and fill setup or a plan for one.


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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 08:25 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Freemananana View Post
I do believe that is a lot of discus, more than I had planned for my 125 when I was contemplating it. I don't know that I could muster a 25% water change a day with my current setup though. That'd be too inconvenient! I do hope you have some sort of quick drain and fill setup or a plan for one.
The Fluval FX4 has a drain plug for fast water changes. I can perform a 25% water change in about 20-30 minutes. I actually just post 4 of the 3.5 - 4" Red Turqs/San Merah for sale on my local craigslist.
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-27-2017, 08:54 PM
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That's neat and I've never heard of the FXs having a drain plug. I haven't read up on them a whole lot, but I see tons of people using the FX4, FX5 or FX6 and never heard anyone mention it. Very cool indeed! I plan on having a straight up drain on my next tank.

I guess I should check craigslist for fish breeders. I had not considered that yet.


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