Laura's 29g planted... HELP! - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 05:33 PM Thread Starter
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Laura's 29g planted... HELP!

Hello Everybody! I've been stalking the forum for a few months off and on... but I think I'm finally ready to start digging in. I've got a 29g tank that I would like to set up as a peaceful community tank... I'm thinking some guppies, maybe a platy or two, and some RCS...

Right now, I literally only have the tank. I'm looking at the following
24" T5 HO system 4x 24W 6500K
A 3-STAGE CANISTER AQUARIUM FILTER FOR FRESH/SALT WATER I found on ebay (the white ones...) says its good for 30-75 gallons
I'm still debating on the substrate. I'm looking at either soil or soil and eco-complete layered...
As for co2... I'm thinking of starting with a DIY, just so I can get everything started, and then maybe converting to pressurized down the road.

The lighting and filter are both pretty much steals as far as I can tell... But then again, I don't have a clue what I'm talking about lol. I

I also have the D. Wastad book on hand... I really need help here... I am so lost!
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post #2 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 05:47 PM
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Welcome to the site.

I just set up another dirt tank.
The dirt tank set up starts in post #4
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/ta...k-warning.html

My oldest is posted here too.
This thread is my soon to be 2yr old tank that Diana W. posted to be a winner on APC as being done right.
(got a giggle outta that)
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/lo...-soil-sub.html

Hope some of the NPT questions go away if you check these out. Takes a lot to answer all that you've asked.
(but you came to the right site in my opinion.)


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post #3 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 07:47 PM
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That is a lot of t5 light for a DIY CO2. I would suggest half the light or upgrading to a pressurized system. You can get away with a lot less watts when you are using T5s.

I have the E-Bay filter and it works well enough for 30-40 gallon size tanks. It is nice and quiet and the flow is acceptable. The drawback is there are pretty much no replacement parts for it if it breaks and the Lilly tubes it comes with are really cheap and crack easily.
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post #4 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 09:22 PM Thread Starter
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Welcome to the site.

I just set up another dirt tank.
The dirt tank set up starts in post #4
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/ta...k-warning.html

My oldest is posted here too.
This thread is my soon to be 2yr old tank that Diana W. posted to be a winner on APC as being done right.
(got a giggle outta that)
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/lo...-soil-sub.html

Hope some of the NPT questions go away if you check these out. Takes a lot to answer all that you've asked.
(but you came to the right site in my opinion.)

Hmmm, now that I've read each of those.... I think I'm even more confused... I thought with the dirt base, you didnt need the extra ferts. And what kind of filter do you use? and what about co2? Gorgeous tanks btw...
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post #5 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 09:31 PM
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Hmmm, now that I've read each of those.... I think I'm even more confused... I thought with the dirt base, you didnt need the extra ferts. And what kind of filter do you use? and what about co2? Gorgeous tanks btw...
Old tank;
My plants were from high tech tanks starting out so I bridged a bit for the change but only for a little while. After that CSM+B mostly added weekly here and there. When I'm walking through the house dosing the other tanks it's hard not too. A single power head is the filter equipped with a sponge.

No CO2 at all, just what the tank makes.

the new tank;
Having it, I used it, adding the clay and what not.


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post #6 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 09:47 PM Thread Starter
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ok, so literally, I just need the dirt and something to cap it with.... a powerhead, and sponge filter.... and lighting? I think I may have found some 24" strip lights at lowes (dual bulb T12 @ 20 watts each) that might work if I find the right bulbs... Do I need to soak the dirt for 6 weeks before hand, I'm shooting for the Miracle Grow Organic Choice... Would it be ok to cap it with something like Eco Complete or should I go with a different gravel? I like the looks of the Black, and if the EC can bring something as far as nutrients to the table...
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post #7 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 09:49 PM Thread Starter
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also, what plants should I start off with?
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post #8 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 09:51 PM
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Hey welcome to TPT!

check my sig for my 29 gal, its pretty much the same setup and may help with ideas or questions ^^

im shooting for aquasoil for my next tank, other soil used is generally a Mineralized Top Soil with or without a cap of sand or gravelish substrate. check the substrate forum for that.

ferts will be a necessity with co2 and that much light regardless, but you may be able to get by with root tabs or yeah, the MTS..

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post #9 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 10:09 PM Thread Starter
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I can most definately go with less light... I'm just not sure how much I should get... Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Chances are that I will end up getting something from Lowes...
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post #10 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 10:19 PM
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So very much of what your asking is personal choice on what a person likes. Eco would work very well as a cap. Decide on how much light you want driving growth then check out the plant profiles tab at the top of the forum page. Soil must be capped with something or a mess follows be it MTS or natural. That light your looking at at Lowes will work but limit you on some plants, it also will use more power than a T5NO or T5HO. T12 is general area lighting. Yes I have several and also T8 fixtures but they are not the best choice.
Make notes of what you like as you look at different things (it helps) otherwise information tends to run together starting out.
My advice; take your time and look at things (note the stuff you like)
Remember this tank can last a very long time set up correctly.

Best I can do for a short answer is here;
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/1338378-post123.html

If you agree with all that being for you by all means lets see you do a soil tank


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post #11 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 10:25 PM
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39.99 24" T5HO with a good reflector and 65K bulb.
I just installed the same fixture except 48" on a 55g tank and for the price don't think it can be beaten. (I'm wrong a lot,, just ask my wife)
http://www.specialty-lights.com/960345.html


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post #12 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 10:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laura View Post
also, what plants should I start off with?
I think if you keep your fish population low you won't need a filter. With a filter you might just drive of CO2. When I started out I did not used a filter and haven't ever. Plants act as filters.
For plants see at the top of the page Plant Profiles. Start off with plants that are easy to keep at first and grow fast; fast growers will uptake excess nutrients. Later on after the tank has become established you can then move on the the less easy plants. From the beginning it best to plant this tank heavily. 80% or more of the substrate should be planted. Plants act as filters.
With the exception of floating plants and non rooted plants aquatic plants get the nutrients from the substrate mainly just like terrestrial plants.
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post #13 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 10:51 PM Thread Starter
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I did just find the same light fixture that I was looking at (96w) with just 2 bulbs... 48W... would that be better to start off with? It comes with 2 6500k bulbs.
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post #14 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-28-2011, 12:01 AM Thread Starter
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ok. I think I'm on a track to success! lol. I've got an 8 page list of plants that I can start off with, hehe. I'll try there to see about getting some next weekend. I'll order the 48w light setup on Tuesday... Its only $40, with free shipping I'll get the dirt Tuesday as well... I'll have to wait until next weekend to get the Eco-Complete.
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post #15 of 67 (permalink) Old 03-28-2011, 12:14 AM
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just out of curiosity.. how are you planning on mounting that light?
Does it come with legs for mounting on the tank or only a hanging fixture??

If you're hanging it any higher than 12" above the tank then you're not going to have enough light with the single fixture.
I'm hope you won't be putting it directly on top of the tank either... It doesn't look sturdy enough to just sit on the tank. (IMHO)

I just started a 29 myself..
I started with the light then based the tank off of it.
ZooMed Aquasun t5HO 30" twin.
Depending on what I want I can have low or high light with the flip of a switch
Mine came from PetCo but there's a few places online that sell them pretty cheap.
http://www.amazon.com/Zoo-Med-AquaSu...1271356&sr=8-1


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