beginner doing 200 gallon - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 33 (permalink) Old 08-05-2019, 04:47 AM Thread Starter
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beginner doing 200 gallon

hi friends.

Here I will be documenting my journey of setting up a 240 gallon planted tank. I am a beginner. this will be my first aquarium. doing as much research as possible to make this a success. I would appreciate all the help.

This has been a long time coming for me. I have always wanted an aquarium and been seriously wanting to have an aquarium for the last 5 years but my life situation never allowed me to.

now after a long time I am getting ready to move into my own house in September and I'm very excited to start one now.

today I went on an aquarium store crawl (went to 7 different stores) to get inspired and I got some quotes for a 72" x 30" x 24" starfire aquarium.

I have decided to go with sump filter and I purchased my sump today spontaneously as I saw one of the store selling some of their used ones.

now I need to:
1- order tank with holes drilled
2- find sturdy stand
3- research hi power LED lighting options
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post #2 of 33 (permalink) Old 08-05-2019, 07:31 PM
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240G got my attention.

That is very ambitious for a beginner.

I hope you are doing LOTS of research.

Be sure to start a journal when you get going, as I am sure many (myself included!) would enjoy following along.


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post #3 of 33 (permalink) Old 08-06-2019, 12:09 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Greggz View Post
240G got my attention.

That is very ambitious for a beginner.

I hope you are doing LOTS of research.

Be sure to start a journal when you get going, as I am sure many (myself included!) would enjoy following along.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greggz View Post
240G got my attention.

That is very ambitious for a beginner.

I hope you are doing LOTS of research.

Be sure to start a journal when you get going, as I am sure many (myself included!) would enjoy following along.
Thank you for following along!
I know it is very ambitious but I'm doing as much research as possible. unfortunately I have to say that I am often finding conflicting information in this hobby but I hope I will be able to find the right path.

Today my girlfriend set up her own 10G tank (with my help haha) no animals, just plants.
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post #4 of 33 (permalink) Old 08-06-2019, 02:01 AM
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Wowzer! First aquarium at 240 gallons! This caught my attention as well and I am subscribing to your thread.

Okay so tell us what your plans are in general flora and fauna wise. Are you planning to go low tech or high tech? Inert substrate, dirt or high tech substrate? What is your tap water like?

I'm very curious to know what your plans are.

Cheers.
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post #5 of 33 (permalink) Old 08-06-2019, 04:32 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your interest.

tap water:
the tap water is fairly hard alkaline water but at least in the beginning I will be using RO water with additives to fix GH and KH. I want to take as many variables out in the beginning


substrate:
for plant substrate I will probably use ADA aquasoil but I may use decorative gravel in some parts of the aquascape to deliberately have open space


co setup:
pressurized co2 with timer to come on and off with light (similar to my girlfriend's setup)


water conditions:
I created a spreadsheet of species I would like to include in the aquascape and their optimal water conditions to decide what tank conditions accommodates most species.
in this case it will be colder (for best moss growth and best plant growth in general) around 75 degrees and moderately-high general hardness around 6 dGH(because of shrimps).


species:
I would like to incorporate different plants in my aquascape. I may choose to focus more intense light (like a kessil led with a narrow lens) to do grow carpeting HC in some places or other high light plants(I reckon it needs a lot of intensity to give high par from +24") and for other parts I will use less intense lighting for other plants
I want to have many amano shrimp, some other species of ornamental shrimp, a schooling fish like harlequin rasboras, some Endlers, some Guppys and a few bottom dwellers like Kuhli loaches.
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post #6 of 33 (permalink) Old 09-02-2019, 06:58 PM Thread Starter
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I apologize to all those who are following becuase of the tank size. I did some measurements and realized a tank wider than 26 inches will not come through the door, so I decided to go with 6ft x 2ft x 2ft which is 180 gallons for the aquarium
sump is 90cm x 45cm x 40cm (~40 gallon) but the sump won't be all the way full (obviously), so the total volume of water will be around 200 gallons.


yesterday with the help of my brother and my girlfriend I started working on the DIY stand.



I will be moving in the new house in around 2 weeks. once I install the stand and have the tank delivered, I will be working on the plumbing and flow set up.
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post #7 of 33 (permalink) Old 09-02-2019, 09:15 PM
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@Here_To_Learn "yesterday with the help of my brother and my girlfriend I started working on the DIY stand."

I'd add middle support, just like you did the sides for a tank that large. also be mindful of the weight on your floor. I would plan a spot for it that spans the width of the tank going across multiple floor joists instead of running down one floor joist. Unless, of course it's going in the basement.

I love your stocking idea. I've always wanted a 240 or 280 gallon tank, even at 180, that has the potential to be a beautiful community tank.
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post #8 of 33 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 02:40 AM Thread Starter
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@Here_To_Learn "yesterday with the help of my brother and my girlfriend I started working on the DIY stand."

I'd add middle support, just like you did the sides for a tank that large. also be mindful of the weight on your floor. I would plan a spot for it that spans the width of the tank going across multiple floor joists instead of running down one floor joist. Unless, of course it's going in the basement.

I love your stocking idea. I've always wanted a 240 or 280 gallon tank, even at 180, that has the potential to be a beautiful community tank.

oh yes I will be adding more support to the stand. apologies if I wasn't clear but the stand is not yet done. I will be adding two more vertical supports in the back and front (but need to have open space in the front to easily move sump in and out.
I will also put 2 "joist" supports on the top and bottom frame, and sheet of plywood on top of that.

the aquarium will be in my man cave in the basement
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post #9 of 33 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 07:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Here_To_Learn View Post
Thanks for your interest.

tap water:
the tap water is fairly hard alkaline water but at least in the beginning I will be using RO water with additives to fix GH and KH. I want to take as many variables out in the beginning


substrate:
for plant substrate I will probably use ADA aquasoil but I may use decorative gravel in some parts of the aquascape to deliberately have open space


co setup:
pressurized co2 with timer to come on and off with light (similar to my girlfriend's setup)


water conditions:
I created a spreadsheet of species I would like to include in the aquascape and their optimal water conditions to decide what tank conditions accommodates most species.
in this case it will be colder (for best moss growth and best plant growth in general) around 75 degrees and moderately-high general hardness around 6 dGH(because of shrimps).


species:
I would like to incorporate different plants in my aquascape. I may choose to focus more intense light (like a kessil led with a narrow lens) to do grow carpeting HC in some places or other high light plants(I reckon it needs a lot of intensity to give high par from +24") and for other parts I will use less intense lighting for other plants
I want to have many amano shrimp, some other species of ornamental shrimp, a schooling fish like harlequin rasboras, some Endlers, some Guppys and a few bottom dwellers like Kuhli loaches.

Whoa....RO water for 200 gal? That's A LOT of RO water, especially considering water changes....

For the species you want to put in your tank, re-mineralized RO water is not really needed (just fyi)


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post #10 of 33 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 07:31 PM Thread Starter
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Whoa....RO water for 200 gal? That's A LOT of RO water, especially considering water changes....

For the species you want to put in your tank, re-mineralized RO water is not really needed (just fyi)

Thanks for your interest. I do realize it will be large water volume required so I will have to constantly keep a large container of RO around.
my RO unit can produce 75 gallons per day, so as long as I am managing the system properly, I won't have RO water shortage issues.

yes I am aware RO water is likely not entirely necessary, but I want to eliminate as many variables as possible in the beginning to maximize my likelihood of success.

at some point I may decide to experiment with gradually mixing some tap water with remineralized RO water (to save on GH booster)
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post #11 of 33 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 07:49 PM
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Thanks for your interest. I do realize it will be large water volume required so I will have to constantly keep a large container of RO around.
my RO unit can produce 75 gallons per day, so as long as I am managing the system properly, I won't have RO water shortage issues.

yes I am aware RO water is likely not entirely necessary, but I want to eliminate as many variables as possible in the beginning to maximize my likelihood of success.

at some point I may decide to experiment with gradually mixing some tap water with remineralized RO water (to save on GH booster)
Yup I totally understand. All I can say is, it's not that bad if you are in the GTA Toronto tap water is pretty good for keeping the creatures you listed. For other cities you can probably find municipal reports as well.

Also, the bigger the tank, the less you have to worry about water parameters fluctuating.

The way I see it, a significant portion of our tax dollars goes into water treatment so might as well make use of it
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post #12 of 33 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 07:54 PM
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I did not realize your sump is only 40 gallons. You will need to be very careful with your fill lines. If your sump is half full then you only have 2.6 inches of water from your tank that can drain into your sump before you have a mess on your floor. If you put in 1" bulkheads that essentially means you can fill water 1.5 inches above your lowest bulkhead hole before you have the potential for a serious problem. And if you ever fill your sump more then half full you will know it when you next turn off the pump.
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post #13 of 33 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 08:19 PM Thread Starter
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I did not realize your sump is only 40 gallons. You will need to be very careful with your fill lines. If your sump is half full then you only have 2.6 inches of water from your tank that can drain into your sump before you have a mess on your floor. If you put in 1" bulkheads that essentially means you can fill water 1.5 inches above your lowest bulkhead hole before you have the potential for a serious problem. And if you ever fill your sump more then half full you will know it when you next turn off the pump.

That's a very good point! I am acutally not planning to drill the tank, rather do a DIY PVC pipe overflow that uses a siphon. (will have extra measures in place to prevent siphon breakage)
I have not calculated the exact numbers but I will definitely test min/max water levels to prevent flooding the sump when turning off the pump.
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post #14 of 33 (permalink) Old 09-03-2019, 08:36 PM
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That's a very good point! I am acutally not planning to drill the tank, rather do a DIY PVC pipe overflow that uses a siphon. (will have extra measures in place to prevent siphon breakage)
I have not calculated the exact numbers but I will definitely test min/max water levels to prevent flooding the sump when turning off the pump.
Just be careful of bubble build up in the siphon, which can lead to siphon break in the long term. This is the system I am currently using and no matter what I do, eventually I get bubble build up.

I recommend using clear plastic for this section so that you can see if any bubbles build up.


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post #15 of 33 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 02:17 AM
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Why are you not planning to drill the tank? Other then the issue of needing to be very careful of overflowing the sump, by drilling the tank you get a LOT of good options available to you with filtration, whereas if you are using a siphon you are basically setting yourself up to babysit the plumbing forever. I mean if a snail crawls over the intake you have yourself a situation. Just the build up of bacterial film will eventually require you to recalibrate a siphon fed sump.
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