Green Acres, 80 gal high tech - Page 3 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #31 of 289 (permalink) Old 01-12-2018, 12:27 PM Thread Starter
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Phil great post and history lesson.

All of the tanks are great in their own way.

But that Discus tank is simply spectacular. Gave me a "wow" moment there.

Perfectly executed!
Thanks Greg. That discus tank has been the most critically acclaimed of all my aquascapes so far. I just wish I had pictures of the filtration to show folks that what's trending now was used to good effect in the past. It was running a 20 long DIY sump with the inlet drilled on the side to allow for full sealing as well as a hard plumbed inline CO2 reactor that could be completely controlled via a ball valve, a lot like Cerges reactors are today.
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I've never regretted over engineering a system, but often regretted under engineering one.
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post #32 of 289 (permalink) Old 01-12-2018, 12:34 PM
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Thanks Greg. That discus tank has been the most critically acclaimed of all my aquascapes so far. I just wish I had pictures of the filtration to show folks that what's trending now was used to good effect in the past. It was running a 20 long DIY sump with the inlet drilled on the side to allow for full sealing as well as a hard plumbed inline CO2 reactor that could be completely controlled via a ball valve, a lot like Cerges reactors are today.
Yeah Phil it doesn't get much better than a well executed Discus tank. And that is probably the nicest one I have ever seen. I can see why it got much praise.

I have considered setting up a tank like that many times over the years.

It's a long story but I have a spare 120G, so now you have got my head spinning with possibilities.


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post #33 of 289 (permalink) Old 01-12-2018, 12:48 PM Thread Starter
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I'll be happy to answer any questions I can if/when you do.

The Senske brothers' 2004 discus tank is one that I'd consider "the" perfect discus tank. It leaves lots of open space for the fish and sand for them to pick at food on. Keeping the Glosso and Sag clean was a PITA in my tank.

2004 AGA Aquascaping Contest - #141
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I've never regretted over engineering a system, but often regretted under engineering one.
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post #34 of 289 (permalink) Old 01-12-2018, 12:58 PM
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I'll be happy to answer any questions I can if/when you do.

The Senske brothers' 2004 discus tank is one that I'd consider "the" perfect discus tank. It leaves lots of open space for the fish and sand for them to pick at food on. Keeping the Glosso and Sag clean was a PITA in my tank.

2004 AGA Aquascaping Contest - #141
OK yours is now the second best Discus tank I have ever seen.

But seriously, between those two would be a very close call. Both presented so beautifully, and equally impressive.
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post #35 of 289 (permalink) Old 01-12-2018, 01:01 PM Thread Starter
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Now that I think about it. My tank would have been great for Rainbows. I eventually had to rehome the discus and did put some Madagascar Rainbows in there, but Melanotaenids would have shown better.
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post #36 of 289 (permalink) Old 01-16-2018, 01:51 PM Thread Starter
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1.16.18-

I just ordered a couple gallons of Biobale from CPR. As much as I've loved having the foam in there it's just not practical for being absent for such a long time. Cleaning those things is a bit of a chore and I don't need to ask the guys to make a huge mess out of the tub. It should also help to keep the sump cleaner overall since it'll be a lot easier to remove for wet-dry vacuuming. Now I just need to go to the dollar store to get a laundry bag for delicates to shove it all into. I also (FINALLY) got some stainless steel mesh (304 steel, #20 mesh size) to cover the overflow inlet. Let's hope that keeps the buggers in the tank where they belong!

The shrimp are all doing well. Two are berried with expectation that another two will be soon. Sadly, I killed a male trying to get him out of the overflow. But, what's the loss of a male when there are still a bunch in there? Losing a female would be a lot more upsetting. I found out that work will be putting in a livestock order with a supplier so I gave them some Christmas money to get me some more shrimp with. Cross your fingers that they do as well as the current ones and make a lot of babies while I'm gone.

Most of the plants are doing ok. I'm noticing some nutrient issues (GDA) and signs of deficiency so I've upped the P to about 1/8 tsp and started adding K into the mix and am going to go to a 3x/week regimen to see how things do. I've got two and a half weeks to do an assessment before World War 3 starts. If there aren't any clear improvements I'll have the maintenance friend stick with it. I fully expect to come back to a disaster after being gone for three months, but I'd rather the plants do well even if the tank's full of algae.

I think that's it for now. The next few weeks should prove interesting.
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I've never regretted over engineering a system, but often regretted under engineering one.
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post #37 of 289 (permalink) Old 01-18-2018, 01:41 AM
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Thanks for doing this journal, I've thoroughly enjoyed reading it. More importantly it is definitely an inspiration. I have a feeling you already have a lot more RCS than you realize. I hope you are feeling/doing well.

Tank Journal -
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post #38 of 289 (permalink) Old 01-18-2018, 03:07 AM
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Thanks

Wow, this is a great thread. I'm just starting to get into the aquarium hobby so I love reading these journals. Thanks for all the info and the what's and why's of it all. I hope I can get there one day. Awesome journal thank you.
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post #39 of 289 (permalink) Old 01-21-2018, 12:25 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for doing this journal, I've thoroughly enjoyed reading it. More importantly it is definitely an inspiration. I have a feeling you already have a lot more RCS than you realize. I hope you are feeling/doing well.
Thanks! I know how many I put in and they're just now starting to breed, so I know I don't have more than 12 yet.

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Wow, this is a great thread. I'm just starting to get into the aquarium hobby so I love reading these journals. Thanks for all the info and the what's and why's of it all. I hope I can get there one day. Awesome journal thank you.
Thank you for the kind words. I remember reading folks' journals when I first started, though the format was a little different. They were inspirational and I just hope I can pay it forward a little bit. Don't worry, you'll get to where you want to be eventually. It's taken me twenty years, so don't feel rushed. Enjoy the journey!
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I've never regretted over engineering a system, but often regretted under engineering one.
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post #40 of 289 (permalink) Old 02-01-2018, 07:24 PM Thread Starter
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2.1.18 preparing for the journey-

After a little less than a week away from the tank I noticed some changes when I finally had the energy to get a good look at the tank today. A lot of the C. wendtii melted/died back, but there are new leaves growing too so it's not a major concern. The H. pinn in the left rear corner has decided it prefers to spread along the substrate rather than grow upright. I wonder how much of the tank it's going to take over while I'm away? It's still getting pinholes in all the old leaves. That's something I haven't been able to figure out a cause for since I first got this plant. Here's to hoping it does well enough that it'll still be there in some significant amount rather than a few scraggly plantlets here and there when I come back. The S. repens is bouncing back from a serious mow-and-replant just fine. I'm pretty sure my buddy's going to have to trim that one down a few times over the next few months. The E. pusillis lawn is filling in nicely. I expect that it'll probably get overgrown and full of moss and hair algae, but it could be worse. At least it should all be fairly well rooted as a mat. The L. meeboldi continues to do well. The leaves are getting slightly larger with the reduced photoperiod and I counted a couple daughter plants coming up near it. It's in kind of a tight spot so I hope it doesn't overgrow its location and have problems. Finally, the L. aromatica is a bit worse for wear after not getting the macros it wanted while I was away. That one's been a bit of a problem child in the tank since the start and I'm not hugely invested in it. If it lives, great. If not, no worries. Something else will fill its place in the future. The moss, Anubias, and rest of the Crypts are doing just fine, thankyouverymuch.

The only other things of note are:
1. Successful hatching of F2 shrimp!!! I saw three of the tiny buggers hanging out in the hairgrass bed earlier. The females are all big, red, and seemingly happy so I anticipate many returns of the day as I won't be here to pester them to death.

2. I've got 50ish more shrimp coming tomorrow. A coworker got an order of stuff while at a show in Florida and got me a deal with our show livestock supplier. With any luck that'll diversify the gene pool and stimulate breeding.

3. Changed out the Poret Foam for bio-bale a little over a week ago. I love Poret Foam as a filter media and will be keeping all the stuff I have for use in other applications. However, it just didn't quite work out how I'd envisioned in way I was using it. The bio-bale shouldn't hold on to as much crap and should get better water-media contact. From what I could tell, most of the water flowing through the filter chamber just passed through a small area of the foam so there was less in the way of filtration that I'd originally expected. When water flows through the bio-bale it gets diverted here and there so that a good amount of the stuff gets some water flowing over it when exposed. Plus, as organic crap builds up it's not getting stuck in a foam block that I can't see. Now it's basically flushed into the bottom of the sump so I can see when it's time to get the vacuum out. Cleaning? HA! I don't see a need to clean the actual media like one does with sponges etc. It may get a little shake up now and then, but that's about it.

Current specs:
Two bulbs; xOxxOx where O is on and x is off, 6hrs/day

CO2 on for 6 hrs/day, approx 8 bubbles per second. Remember, I'm not shooting for Magic Guru Approved target numbers; just consistency for the shrimp and crypts. LOL, I almost wrote shrimp and grits there. FYI, cherry shrimp don't taste like anything. Now you know.

KNO3- 3/4tsp 3x/wk
KH2PO4- 1/16 (ish) tsp 3x/wk
Ca- 20ppm via liquid 1x/wk
Mg- 5ppm via liquid 1x/wk
CSM+B- 1/32 (ish) tsp 1x/wk

Pictures will be posted after I've had a chance to detail the tank so we'll have a good before and after set.
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I've never regretted over engineering a system, but often regretted under engineering one.
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post #41 of 289 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 02:59 PM Thread Starter
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2.4.18- THE BEFORE, DUN DUN DUN!!

Alright folks, this is it. We're headed to the hospital this afternoon so now starts the three-and-a-half months without my tank. *cry*

























Things of note;

There's a decent amount of BBA on some of the wood pieces and a few leaves. Since I can't risk getting bugs from sticking my hand in the tank they're just going to have to stay there. Hopefully the tank's organic load is low enough and maintenance will be consistent enough that it'll go away on its own.

The shrimp are doing well; one's heavily berried and the other big female is saddled again. I think third female is somewhere in the breeding cycle, but it's been hard to tell. I'm tickled to death that they're doing as well as they have. Takashi's made it back into the overflow and Lucky's just swimming around living the life of an Otto in a luxury home.

I've been playing around with the idea of having a full hairgrass field wrapping around the hardscape. The real question is will I be willing to deal with that much hair algae and moss growing in it. Also, it's about the same shade of green as a lot of the other plants. But it's so pretty!! The other option right now would be to go with the Stauro. Who knows what'll happen and how much each will grow. Hell, I may luck into some Glossostigma and that will be that.

There we go, the final pictorial update for a while. I'm really curious to see what it's like when I get back.
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I've never regretted over engineering a system, but often regretted under engineering one.
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Last edited by Phil Edwards; 02-04-2018 at 03:05 PM. Reason: .
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post #42 of 289 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 04:40 PM
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Phil the tank looks great.

But more importantly, I am hoping everything goes well for you with your treatment.

And I am sure many others in the hobby who you have touched along the way will be doing so as well.

God speed my friend.


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post #43 of 289 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 05:04 PM
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Boy I had a blistering 'pics or it didnt happen' post ready to go. So much for that...

Looking good man, bet its an overgrown jungle when you get back.

Ts and Ps my friend.
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post #44 of 289 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 06:10 PM
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Good luck to you sir!


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post #45 of 289 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 08:15 PM
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What is the big olive plant with the big round leave in the drift wood. It's awesome. Crypt? blassi? Its in the center of the second picture.

Looks like it is starting to take off. Will be growing out the top by the time you are done.
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