Oreo's 65 gal safari - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-06-2017, 12:13 AM Thread Starter
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Oreo's 65 gal safari

Have been lurking around TPT for some time and also building up my new tank. I replaced my 46 gal bow front with this new set up. It has been a very slow work in progress over the last year or so. I previously posted under the username “ppp” but started this new thread under a new username as I had difficulty in logging in.

Tank: 65 gal 36 x 18 x 25

Sump: DIY using 20 gal PETCO tank

Pump: Jebao DCT 6000

Circulation Pump: Hydor Koralia Nano 425

Light: 2 x Finnex Planted+ 24/7

Heaters: 1 x Aqueon 300W and 1 x Fluval 200W

CO2: Pressurized with 5lb tank, CO2Art regulator, Cerges Reactor, Dwyer Flow controller, Milwaukee ph controller

Dosing: EI using a Jebao DP-4 dosing pump

Hydor ATO

Substrate: Eco Complete (recycled from previous tank - about 2-3 yrs old)

This is the complete view of the tank. Wish I had the woodworking skills!! (and photography skills!). The "cavity" in the wall was used as a general storage space before being converted to a tank display. I came up with the rough plan/sketches and had a friend with amazing carpentry skills convert them to a work of art. Then began my real work. Lots of trial and errors, learning curves, disappointments and water leaks, and successes!!



The aim of this journal, as with other journals, is to give a glimpse of my journey in the hope of giving back to the TPT community who has been a great help to me and to also learn from peers who have much more experience and wisdom than me in this hobby.

SUMP

A simple DIY sump that cost less than $50.00 to build - $1.00/gal PETCO tank acrylic baffles for less than $10.00, silicon and some elbow grease.
Mechanical Filtration: “Poret” foam of varying density
Bio Filtration: K2 Kaldness media in a mesh bag – I had a bunch left over from a Koi pond project.
A small bag of Purigen

Rio 1100 pump to feed the Cerges reactor
Return Pump: Jebao DCT 6000
Heaters: 1 x Aqueon 300W and 1 x Fluval 200W

The sump is fed via a modified Eshopps overflow box. In addition to the standard main drain, I installed 2 more siphons/emergency drain in the box – a big shout out to @Freemananana for his help on this.




CO2 SYSTEM

Of all the builds, this was the most frustrating part for me. It was a nightmare trying to get the optimum CO2 ppm level. I started off with a 10 inch Cerges followed by two 10 inch Cerges reactors running in series. I did get a little drop in CO2 but not to the level I wanted. Ditched the 2 x 10 inch reactors for a single 20” reactor and it was an almost instant solution. The rate at which I was injecting CO2, it was more like a steam of bubbles and therefore impossible to get a realistic bps. I wanted a more scientific and controllable approach to this. Electronic mass flow controllers run at several hundred to thousands of dollars. Finally found the Dwyer Flow controller but did not bite the bullet till I read a review by @Greggz . Having used it for a couple of months in conjunction with the pH controller, I would highly recommend this method over bubble counters for larger tanks.







FERTILIZATION


Initially stared with dry EI dozing and then moved to 500ml solutions. For the last 3-4 weeks I am using the Jebao dosing pump with pre-mixed solutions. It works but still too early to give a full report. I have been dosing standard EI rates for a volume of 70 gals. Will play around with these as plant growth behavior requires.



PLANTS

During the learning curve, I has simple, low maintenance plants - Java ferns , Amazon sword and a few others. These were all ripped out and replaced with new plants. Bulk of the plants in the tank are courtesy of @burr740.
I have observed excellent growth in all of them. The real issues I am facing right now is lack of red in the new growth. Have to figure out if this is a lighting issue or a fertilizer issue.




LRJ, LRJ, Freemananana and 3 others like this.

Last edited by OreoP; 07-26-2017 at 10:30 PM.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-06-2017, 12:53 PM
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That's a great start Oreo! I'll have to keep an eye on this thread.

110g Tropical Community & Sakura Shrimp
55g BN Breeding Grounds, Peacock Gudgeons, Panda, Pygmies, & Smudge Spot Cories, Rili Shrimp
10g RCS and show guppies


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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-06-2017, 12:57 PM
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I couldn't help but like this! I don't remember what I did, but I'm glad it helped. I'm also very glad to see another sump on the forum. They are popping up more and more! That stand is something else though. I am extremely jealous! I need some friends like that. Your in cabinet shots look great. It looks fairly tidy for the space available and you've got a lot going on. I wish you the best of luck and look forward to seeing some stocking along with plant growth. I have no real input on CO2 or dosing as I prefer to keep things low tech.


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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-06-2017, 01:50 PM
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That is a really unique and beautifully executed in wall tank and stand. I have never seen anything like it, and obviously your friend knows what he is doing. I just love the whole design.

And the tank and equipment set up look great as well. You have the makings of something very, very nice there.

Glad the discussion of the flow meter helped you out in some small way. For larger tanks, I think it is extremely helpful.

Looking forward to further updates, and really just an excellent first post for a journal.


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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-06-2017, 03:14 PM
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Ok I gotta ask, What are you using the pentair big blue residential filter for? I only ask because I am actually a rep for Pentair and never thought to use one of those for a tank! lol Hell if that is your tank filter and its working great I may have just found my next filter haha
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-06-2017, 03:32 PM
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Wow that enclosure is nice! Impressive gear too.

The plants look healthy so I wouldnt worry too much about color at this point. Just keep things clean and let em grow out for a while...see what happens

Looking forward to watching this progress.


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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 01-06-2017, 04:05 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you all for the positive comments. Took almost a year to build the collection of equipment using Amazon points!!

@darkohanzo The pentair whole house filter is used as a "Cerges" CO2 reactor - basically a very efficient method to dissolve CO2 gas into water before it enters the display tank. Most people use 10" housings but for me the 20" proved to be more effective.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-20-2017, 12:21 AM Thread Starter
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Been a while since my first post. I added a few additional plant varieties.... it has been a learning curve, with lots of info from fellow TPT members. So far I am mostly satisfied with the results. However, want to focus more on getting a cleaner looking tank and deeper reds/colors. Not sure if it a light issue or a dosing issue, but the colors are not as deep and bright as I would like them. I have maintained and 7 hr photo period and standard EI dosing. In the coming weeks will play around with the dosing to see if I get any improvements in color. There is conflicting information on this and I would welcome any suggestions. As far as the lighting goes, I am thinking of adding a single or dual T5 fixture to enhance the reds..but that is still way down the road!!.

This is a full view of the tank...taken one day after WC and general clean up:



A nice jungle growth of s. repens and lud. peruensis




The AR mini, AR purple and p. helferi were from tissue cultures. The AR mini and purple are coming up quite nicely but the p. helferi is struggling. But hoping that it will bloom with time...



Other plants look pretty healthy but lack in color








Behind the cabomba purple (hoping it will show purple soon!!!), the ammannia senegalensis exhibits an interesting transformation of leaves and color as it progresses from emmersed to immersed:



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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-20-2017, 12:35 AM
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spectacular tank!
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-20-2017, 01:14 AM
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Nice update! The tank is coming along beautifully.

Lots of growth in a short amount of time.

Keep up the good work, and keep the updates coming.


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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-20-2017, 01:09 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the positive comments!!


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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 09:35 PM
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Great setup! Really like that stand.
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 03-17-2017, 04:43 AM
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Great tank!
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