300 planted south american tank - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-30-2017, 12:14 AM Thread Starter
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300 planted south american tank

this tank is a redo of my 300 west African tank. there are a few plants that are from other places but trying to eventually get to a fully south American tank. I am not looking for a full on biotype, but am trying out this tank as a possible warm up for a much larger south American planted tank. I have been aiming at trying to keep the water fairly soft, acidic, and warm. currently the tank is at 85 degrees F, with a pH of around 6.5, and a hardness of around 2 dKH. the tank is now stocked with a variety of tetras, pencilfish, dwarf cichlids, a variety of loracarid and corydoras catfish, and a group of 15, as of this writing, discus. I plan on adding a school of Corydoras hastatus, a few more dwarf pencilfish, and a few more Lnumber catfish. here are a few pictures of what it looks like this month.



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post #2 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-30-2017, 12:24 AM
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Very nice!


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post #3 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-30-2017, 12:27 AM
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Cannot wait to see it finished.


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post #4 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-30-2017, 01:16 AM Thread Starter
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a few closer up shots of some of the fish.






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post #5 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-30-2017, 12:30 PM
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Holy hell thatís large. Canít wait to see some more shots. Great pics and angles.


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post #6 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-30-2017, 12:45 PM
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300 gallons got my attention right away. Looking forward to learning more about this tank. Subscribed.

And by the way, what are the dimensions of that tank? Looks very deep.....do you have to climb inside to get to the bottom??


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post #7 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-30-2017, 02:35 PM
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Probably needs scuba gear

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post #8 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-30-2017, 03:31 PM
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I love this. Following


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post #9 of 36 (permalink) Old 10-30-2017, 05:16 PM Thread Starter
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the tank is 48x48x30. so it is my smallest shallowest tank. I have a 36 inch deep reef that is trouble to work in but worth it in my opinion. I can get stuff done by using the right tools without getting wet much past the elbows. will try to get some pics with a macro lens this week. fish are looking great plants are just ok. still trying to work out how much hardness is best to still get decent growth and how warm I can keep it. for a while my hardness was below 1 dKh and it seemed like plant growth totally stopped. since adding some tap back into my ro/di water change water it has improved
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post #10 of 36 (permalink) Old 11-02-2017, 09:20 PM Thread Starter
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I'm trying to work out a way to keep my gh higher. I do rodi water changes and top off. my well water has a kh of 18 and nitrates in the 100ppm range. I would like to keep the gh somewhere in the 2 to 4 range. I have just set up a way to do automated 100 gallon water changes but am a little leary of driving by hardness through the floor if I forget to add tap water or hardness booster. if I'm keeping my gh around 3 and do a 20 percent water change with pure rodi water does anyone think the resulting drop in hardness would matter at all? this way I can just plan on using my dosing pump to pump gh booster daily and screw with the strength and dosage until I get a relatively stable gh. does that sound reasonable. and I know the discus can take much harder water, but I do have and want to keep some of the SA dwarf cichlids, like biotecus opercularis, that don't do as well in harder water. secondly will at gh of 2 to 4 be alright for a mix of plants species that typically like softer water? thanks, steve
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post #11 of 36 (permalink) Old 11-02-2017, 11:01 PM Thread Starter
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I did some reading on GH boosters and decided to start with a low dose and see where that gets me. so I added 1/4 cup of nilocs GH booster and will check my GH tomorrow. that dose is equal to one tsp per 50 gallons so I think I'm not overdoing it. also ordered 50 pound bags of CaSo4, MgSO4, and KSO4, so I should be able to make my own to last a few years.
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post #12 of 36 (permalink) Old 11-03-2017, 02:04 AM
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What are your lights for this bad boy? I have a 150 gallon 48"L x 30"H and my radions are having trouble growing plants on the bottom. Looks great!
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post #13 of 36 (permalink) Old 11-03-2017, 06:28 PM Thread Starter
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I made the led lighting a few years ago. it is 5 separate units with a 40 watt warm white bridgelux led in the center and 6 3watt colored leds around it. the back unit in the corner has the 40 watter out at the moment, and all the units could use an update to slightly better color temp emitters. when new the par in the center of the tank at the bottom was 100. I don't use lenses because I don't like the disco effect they give so instead I have a diy aluminum reflector around each unit. total wattage when all units are on full power is 260 watts so I think that is decent. as a reef I used to light this tank with 4 250 watt mhs. with 220 watts of vhos. I have considered putting one MH in the center with 4 of the leds surrounding it. this would mean upping the co2 quite a bit and more ferts probably and a lot more trimming, so I'm not in a hurry to try that out, but the extra heat generated would mean less wattage on heating the tank. if/'when I do a larger version of this tank I was planning on 6 250 watt mhs down the middle with leds on the front and back. I also don't really know of what MH bulb I would use in a planted tank. most of the mh bulbs I see for planted tanks are not available in 250 or 400 watt sizes.
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post #14 of 36 (permalink) Old 11-03-2017, 06:46 PM
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Definitely going to follow this one. I love the idea of a different tank, something outside of the norm.
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post #15 of 36 (permalink) Old 11-03-2017, 08:21 PM Thread Starter
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a few pictures from today. tried out the macro lens for the first time in a couple years.




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