jart's 45 gallon journal - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-14-2004, 01:06 AM Thread Starter
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jart's 45 gallon journal

hi all,

this has certainly been a long time coming. but nevertheless, here are some preliminary pics. this is my 45 gallon, and there have been many steps along the way. for starters, my original tank was a custom made beast. over the course of a few months, i spent several hours designing a custom hood and buidling a new enclosure for the stand. to make a long story short, the old tank developed structural problems and the front glass was hopelessly scratched. so i ending up paying a cool $600 or so to have it replaced (since it was a custom size, it cost far more than a 100 gallon). but i had spent far too long on the hood design and stand to start anew. i am also trying to gain some experience with my camera as well.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-14-2004, 01:11 AM
 
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what are the dims of the tank
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-14-2004, 01:32 AM Thread Starter
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aquarium boy it is 40 long by 14 wide by 19 high. the length of the tank of course means i can only use 36" tubes. i have 3 tubes over the tank right now; two of which are overdriven 4x. they are standard flourescent tubes, 5000k and 6500k.

i will repost a couple of pics which had been on the old forum. the pics illustrate the (unpainted!) hood's design. there are drawer slides incorporated into the hood, which allow the lighting enclosure to be slid front to back to allow access for cleaning.
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-14-2004, 03:03 AM Thread Starter
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currently i have no fish in the tank. perhaps i will add some ottos after 10 days or so. i have my co2 set at 2 bubbles per second but the ph has yet to stabilize. since my tap water kh is virtually nonexistant i added some crushed coral to my filstar; i guess it'll take a few days for the kh to rise. having no fish in the tank in a way is a bit of a luxury as i can play with the chemistry without fear of stressing the critters.

i figure i have about 150 watts over the tank. the ludwigia started pearling on day 1; the hygophilia polysperma and vals soon thereafter. the hygro difformis hasn't pearled yet.

again sorry for the fuzzy shot. above the cannister you can (almost) make out the fluorescent fixtures. i have all 3 ballasts mounted in the fixtures; needless to say there are lots of wires running from under the tank to the hood.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-14-2004, 04:48 AM
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It's lookin' pretty good! My first thought is add more plants. Then again, I can't seem to find enough different ones to try. So, take my advice with a grain of salt .

Brian.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-14-2004, 02:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jart
hi all,

this has certainly been a long time coming. but nevertheless, here are some preliminary pics. this is my 45 gallon, and there have been many steps along the way. for starters, my original tank was a custom made beast. over the course of a few months, i spent several hours designing a custom hood and buidling a new enclosure for the stand. to make a long story short, the old tank developed structural problems and the front glass was hopelessly scratched. so i ending up paying a cool $600 or so to have it replaced (since it was a custom size, it cost far more than a 100 gallon). but i had spent far too long on the hood design and stand to start anew. i am also trying to gain some experience with my camera as well.



Looking good.... Cant wait to see it grow in...

Jason

120g, Flourite & Sand. DIY Stand and Canopy. CF lighting 3wpg, Pressurized C02, DIY reactor. 2-XP3's, 500watt heater.
Heavily planted
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-14-2004, 08:02 PM Thread Starter
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why BSS? for looks (ya know, i like the jungle look too!)? or do you think it's not planted heavily enough to compete with algae?

if you think i may need a few more plants to help keep the algae in check then by all means i'll spring for a few more. the lfs store i bought these from (can't tell from the pics but they are very healthy) also had some didiplis and blyxa japonica; however i didn't feel they were good to try in a newly setup tank.

anyway thanks BSS for the words of encouragement... and thanks wellbiz for the help with the reactor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BSS
It's lookin' pretty good! My first thought is add more plants. Then again, I can't seem to find enough different ones to try. So, take my advice with a grain of salt .

Brian.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-14-2004, 08:24 PM
 
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I like the way you built the hood like a drawer that you can just slide open. Very ingenious! Keep posting pictures!
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-15-2004, 01:38 AM
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I was thinking more plants mainly to help out compete the algae. I would certainly agree that the Didiplis and Blyxa are not good starter plants. I got a Blyxa with my first "assortment" kit back when I was first starting off. I just kinda watched it slowly die off.

Brian.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-16-2004, 01:19 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ksand
I like the way you built the hood like a drawer that you can just slide open. Very ingenious! Keep posting pictures!
well if you are interested in the design and have any questions i have updated the old thread (most of the pics are re-added). https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...=9298#post9298

the pics show the old tank. the drawer slides in the pics in the old thread really weren't long enough so i since replaced them. now that i have the new tank without the @#$%^ piece of glass on the "top front", a simpler design probably would have worked fine. the drawer slides design does work, yeah, but the planning seemed to take forever. it seemed very difficult to conceptualize how high the lights would be over the tank without a few prototypes. and, if your measurements aren't exact the slides won't slide properly.

for the record, the varathane colours plastic enamel (exterior/interior, rated for marine use) that i used to seal the hood has held up very nicely (buck and others had pointed out the need for a very good sealer since the hood is made of mdf).
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2005, 02:28 AM Thread Starter
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Well, time for an update, even if my digi cam is out of service, At BSS's utter insistence I added some Limno sessiliflora, what I think is Bacopa monnieri, and water sprite. As I'm almost up to the 4 week mark, I started ferts yesterday. I know it's a contentious issue whether one should add ferts earlier. I have done a lot of reading on the subject as of late while waiting for the plants to tell me their needs and the only conclusion I have drawn is that people on this board have success with either method.

I've started the estimative index method. Why? My take on this method is that it appears to be the easiest method for me at this point in time. For starters, I find it difficult to accurately distinguish between 2 and 10 ppm on my Seachem nitrate test. Not that it is critical to do so, but...

Algae has been a bit of a nuisance thus far but I can remove the majority of it. My wisteria though has shown no vertical growth. My hygro is yellowing, looking poorly, and has thin stems. The Bacopa is growing taller but is showing a lot of stem between the rows of leaves. And the water sprite really hasn't done anything.

My first tests done yesterday show:
Nitrate/ nitrite and PO4 undetectable.
Kh 50 (2.8); I wish it would fluctuate less but I have been doing a lot of water changes trying to suck up the algae.
CO2 only 12 ppm this evening so up with the bubble rate (my girlfriend's betta started acting wierd the other night after 2 days in his new home so I turned down the rate a bit).

My plan:
Day 1: 1.1 mL Fleet, 0.5mL tsp KNO3
Day 2: 10 mL trace mix
Day 3: 0.5 mL Fleet, 0.25mL tsp KNO3
Day 4: 10 mL trace mix
Day 5: 0.5 mL Fleet, 0.25mL tsp KNO3
Day 6: 10 mL trace mix
Day 7: 50% water change

I would appreciate any comments at all regarding this plan. Oh and in case you're wondering, no LFS in town has any otos. That's why I haven't added any yet.
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2005, 02:52 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jart
My hygro is yellowing, looking poorly, and has thin stems. The Bacopa is growing taller but is showing a lot of stem between the rows of leaves. And the water sprite really hasn't done anything.
The hygro is telling you its time to dose, the hygro's are usually the first to let you know since they are the fastest growing of all stems I feel. The whole idea of waiting is to be sure that the plants are ready to utilize nutrients. Some tanks it could be a week, others could take as long as 8 weeks.
As far as your CO2 goes Jart... crank it up , 25-30ppm is a level that you should be lookin at, I prefer the high end... that 12ppm just wont do if you are ODing them bulbs 4X .
And dont worry about that betta...if ever there was a fish on this planet that could care less about CO2 levels , its a betta.

You are on your way Jart... now get that dang camera fixed , I love photos !
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 01-11-2005, 03:04 AM Thread Starter
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And dont worry about that betta...if ever there was a fish on this planet that could care less about CO2 levels , its a betta.
LOL! He doesn't care about anything! He's a slug, and my GF was getting worried about him since he spends all his time between the lower stems of the Ludwigia. The moronic fool spent so much time there yesterday I spent 10 minutes seaching around the tank stand before I spotted him in the tank. I dunno, I was worried since he hadn't come to the top for a couple of days to eat so I netted him late last night and put him in a breeding trap so it would be easier to feed him. So I wake up this morning, and the "docile" idiot had jumped out of the breeding trap and into (fortunately) the tank .

I appreciate as always your input, especially regarding the hygro. I often spend time viewing your tanks and wish you'd post pics more often as well
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-21-2005, 03:45 PM Thread Starter
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Well the renos are still ongoing and while I have been very busy and was away on vacation for a few days I did manage to get the camera fixed. I'll throw up a few pics for now, and I apologize for the quality/ flash. I did a major thinning on the left side yesterday and the right side will have to wait till next weekend as I am saving the vals for a friend at a society meeting. Saturday though I manged to find some L. glandulosa and R. rotundifolia so I am waiting to see what they will do. Thanks to all for the help thus far; the pics don't say a lot but I am very pleased, though I am having a hard time keeping up with the pruning.
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-21-2005, 05:57 PM
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Hey Jart! How goes it?

Nice to see your tank again - filled in nicely...

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