Liz's 55 gallon - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-24-2011, 04:57 PM Thread Starter
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Liz's 55 gallon

Our weekly classified paper is delivered on Wednesdays. This past Wednesday, I was looking through it and found a "50 gallon" aquarium that was being sold with accessories for $50. I made an appointment to go see it and came home with the tank. After doing some measuring, I've decided that it's actually a 55 gallon aquarium, as the outside measurements are 4' L X 12 1/2" W X 20 3/4" H.

The tank:


The "gravel" that came with the tank. It's actually a bunch of broken seashells. It became gravel for our driveway.


The tank had once been used as a saltwater tank. It had hard water stains on the top several inches of the inside of the tank and several on the outside, as well as on the lid and filter.



The tank came with the light, the 40-60 gallon filter, 3 air pumps, a brush to clean the algae off the sides of the tank, the cover, the oak stand (that has a bit of water damage), a couple of books, a couple of small bubble stones, some rocks, and the "gravel". It also came with a couple of saltwater items. Any idea if these are worth anything?



I had not planned on getting a new tank, so bringing this home was a bit of a surprise for me. After doing some research and getting some opinions, I have narrowed the stocking list down to two possibilities where the danios and white clouds are from the 10 gallon tank I've had set up for over a year. The 30 gallon listed in the stocking options is my father's tank that I'll be picking up when we go home for the holidays (a journal/photo album thread will be started for it soon).

Stocking option #1
55 gallon
  • 6 pearl gouramis
  • 2-4 bolivian rams
  • 10 cherry barbs
  • 8 corydoras paleatus
30 gallon
  • 10 White Cloud Mountain Minnows
  • 6 Danios (mix of leopard and zebra)
  • 8 Corydoras Paleatus
  • Red Cherry Shrimp


Stocking option #2
55 gallon
  • 6 pearl gouramis
  • 6 danios (mix of leopard and zebra)
  • 10 cherry barbs
  • 8 corydoras paleatus
30 gallon
  • 2-4 bolivian rams
  • 10 white cloud mountain minnows
  • 8 corydoras paleatus
  • Red Cherry Shrimp
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-24-2011, 05:06 PM Thread Starter
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Yesterday, I cleaned the hard water stains off the outside and filled it halfway full by repeatedly filling and treating a gallon jug. After I finished I put two bubble stones in it to prevent the water from going stale. I then turned the light off in the room and was unpleasantly surprised. I had centered the tank on a plug-in centered on the empty wall in the kitchen. As it turns out, the plug-in I chose (the only one on that wall) is controlled by the light switch for the room (even though the plug-in and the light switch are separated by about 10 feet and a doorway). For now, I've run an extension cord from another plug-in (also controlled by a switch. This switch doesn't also control the lights for the room, though). I'm hoping the extension cord is only temporary until we can figure out how to bypass the switch for the plug-in I've chosen for the fish tank...

Here's a picture of it after I cleaned the water stains off the outside and partially filled the tank. As this was an unplanned thing, I don't have the substrate for it yet. I'm planning on using Black Diamond blasting sand with flourish root tabs. My husband said he'd pick up the sand tonight after the Christmas Eve service at church. Now, I need to work on the stains on the inside of the tank...
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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-03-2012, 10:40 PM Thread Starter
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The tank has been full of water now for about a week. Today, I put some filter media from another tank into the filter and also added a sponge filter that had been running in another tank for several weeks. After that, I added 4 White Cloud Mountain Minnows. They are all doing well and seem to be enjoying the extra space (they came out of a 10 gallon tank). I also put a heater on the tank and added some 'trident' java fern, a stem of anacharis, and a couple stems of brazilian pennywort.
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-04-2012, 08:53 PM Thread Starter
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I tested the water this morning with the following results:

Ammonia: .25 ppm
Nitrite: .25 ppm
Nitrate: 40-80 ppm

I did a partial water change (added twice as much as I removed) and will test the water again tomorrow morning. By using the filter media from an established but smaller tank, I am hoping to be able to add more livestock next week.
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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-04-2012, 08:59 PM
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Great find Liz. I am trying to understand this. You were testing if the tank leaked or not? that's why you fill up the tank? Then you will add the substrate?

I wanna see more updates.

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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-04-2012, 09:02 PM Thread Starter
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Yes, I filled it about half-full of water as a test for leaks. For the substrate, I only used black diamond blasting sand, so it wasn't a big deal to add it after I had water in the tank. I'll add flourish root tabs to the sand soon. In fact, I have a plant order in with gordonrichards and am expecting to receive it early next week.
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 05:51 PM Thread Starter
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I tested the water again to today. The results:

Ammonia: .25ppm
Nitrites: .25ppm
Nitrates: 40ppm
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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 05:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christian_cowgirlGSR View Post
I tested the water again to today. The results:

Ammonia: .25ppm
Nitrites: .25ppm
Nitrates: 40ppm
Tank's definetely cycling. Maybe an electrician can wire a new outlet so you don't have to move the tank?
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 06:32 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Maybe an electrician can wire a new outlet so you don't have to move the tank?
I am hoping that that will be the case. We've called a friend who does electrical work and are just waiting to hear back from him. It SOUNDS simple enough...
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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-09-2012, 07:54 PM Thread Starter
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We talked to our friend, the electrician. He said that it shouldn't be a big deal to get the outlet to have power all the time. He's supposed to be coming over later today to do it for us!

Today, I received the plants I ordered, as well as the light kit from AH Supply. I haven't gotten the light put on yet, but I did get the plants put in the tank.

Crinum calamistratum, jungle val, and italian val (java fern and brazilian pennywort are some I had from another tank and will only be in this tank temporarily):


Crinum aquatica and italian val



Amazon sword with italian vals behind it:


Whole tank shot (the rocks and castle decoration are only temporary):
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post #11 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-09-2012, 07:57 PM Thread Starter
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I forgot to mention... The test results for the last several days have been:

Ammonia: 0ppm
Nitrites: .25ppm
Nitrates: 40-80ppm

I did a pwc yesterday evening.
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post #12 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-09-2012, 08:30 PM
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Just a thought: Petco has their dollar per gallon sale going on right now, so if you would want to get a brand new 55g tank (no more water stains), you could pick one up for less than $60.

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post #13 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-09-2012, 09:02 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info, but the closest petco is 3+ hours away, one direction. I'll take care of the stains eventually. I figured I'd "soak" them for a while and then take a razor to them after they've had a chance to soak for a while.
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post #14 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-09-2012, 09:13 PM
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Do not know if your Petsmart will honor Petco price but mine does and they are alot closer. Also not sure if you even have a petsmart near you
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post #15 of 34 (permalink) Old 01-09-2012, 09:14 PM Thread Starter
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Hmm... Did not know that Petsmart honored petco prices. Even so, that doesn't do me much good. The closest Petsmart (or any LFS for that matter) is 3+ hours away as well.
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