I return! After much upheaval, final exams, tank drama, planting and a busy work schedule, I bring you now to one of my three newest tanks!
I have three tanks that I did not create a thread for as they were really only meant to be grow out tanks for the tanks I am about to write on. I will be sure to give updates on my 29 gallon for those who remember me. Technically an exchange of tanks, there will be three new threads created, only one tank being broken down and rescaped... But you don't care about that right now.
On with this tank!
Table of Contents
Update 2 - If you have a problem
Persistence does pay off. I pestered my boss enough that he relented and allowed me to setup a tank for my desk. Within 48 hours of his verbal consent, and guidelines for said tank, I had secured, purchased and set it up.
I had been scouring the local buy and sell sites in my area for a Spec tank for a few weeks, while simultaneously drafting potential stories for my husband as to why a tank followed me home. Again.
For some reason Canada doesn't like stocking the Spec III tanks except on amazon, or ordering online, and that leaves a money trail, so it wasn't an option. I found one on craigslist for $80, walked in the door like nothing happened with a bag full of plants, filter media and substrate and set about cleaning my tank.
I distracted my husband with the snails, said something muffled about having a tank at work and everything turned out beautiful.
Boiling water, some vinegar and a fresh sponge, cleaned her up good as new.
One of the things I commonly read about was the grates sucking in bettas fins given the strength of the pump at the intake, so that was the first modification that I made.
Enter our good friends: Craft Mesh and Zip Ties!
In the words of David Freiburger, here is our Zip Tie Tech Tip: You can zip things to other things to hold things together!
I cut a piece of mesh slightly larger than the perimeter of the grate itself so that I would have enough space to attach things to.
In the interest of neatness, I zipped it inwards. Additionally I did not want to make any permanent changes to this tank in case I change my mind. I'm fickle. And it's not just the ovaries.
All neat and tidy:
At this point, and not shown here, and also after much reading, I cut 4 holes in the tube of the outflow on the pump, to allow the water to mix in this section where I plan on placing to heater to allow the water to warm and circulate through the tank. This had an added benefit of lowering the actual pressure of outflow so the poor betta who will call this tank home won't be tossed about.
I like dirted tanks. So we start with some organic black earth.
Then came some black sand. The background that divided the tank and filter is also black, and my boss requested a colourful betta, so I went with black for a greater contrast.
Next came playing with rock formations and adhering sticks to rocks for the scape. I used river rocks from a place I shall not name. (Hint: It might be a river.) Additionally I adhere a piece of a sandblasted manzanita branch to a piece of slate to keep it down while it got water logged.
Next came the planting! Just some S repens, Hygrophilia and littifloria for easy plants that will survive in a low-tech setup that I won't be seeing everyday.