Redbone's 180 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-28-2009, 08:19 PM Thread Starter
 
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Redbone's 180

Just a link to large pics.






























Last edited by Redbone; 03-01-2009 at 08:14 PM.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-28-2009, 09:58 PM
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I would be interested in seeing some pictures of how this tank is plumbed and the stand is constructed.


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5.65WPG, EI dosing

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April 2008

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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-01-2009, 04:17 PM Thread Starter
 
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The 'stand' is solid stone sitting atop cinder block all the way down to the house's foundation. I have no idea why the builder constructed it, but it is perfect for a fish tank. I guess it was meant to be a planter. I built forms and poured three blocks of concrete with about 3" overhangs to support the tank.

The hood is custom built out of marine plywood and is composed of two halves. Each half contains two 4’, 110 watt VHO Aquasuns and a reflector. The inside of the hood was coated with marine grade epoxy and polyurethane made for boat hulls. Everything is finished with red oak 6” planks on the hood, 4” planks on the base.

There is a 1" PVC drain line and a 3/4" PVC pressure feed line. The water and all electrical lines are routed through a heating duct to a small room directly below the tank. The ballasts, timers, heaters, scrubber, filter and all plumbing are located there.

I designed an automated system using a polyethylene 55 gallon drum. The tank level is automatically maintained by a siphon skimmer. Five gallons of water is added daily, and five gallons drains out. There are two fail safes. One is a sump pump switch that detects a loss of water and will shut down all electrical systems. The other is a ground fault breaker that will do the same thing.

The tank has been up and running continuously for almost twenty years without a problem. I tore it down and rebuilt it in 2000, and added an undergravel heater.

Basement 1 Large
Basement 2 Large
Basement 3 Large

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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-01-2009, 04:37 PM
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Very nice tank!!! I think the solid stand was meant for a bar.

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Coral Keepers diaries.

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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-01-2009, 04:46 PM
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nice! I like the stem plants on the right side most. Are those Rotola? I think you could transplant a few cuttings to the other corner for balance? Who knows, your right side will probably reach the surface eventually so... yep.

?Siamese? algae eaters look healthy in their school. Didn't know they were social.

My tank sucks now

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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-01-2009, 05:00 PM Thread Starter
 
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The algae eaters are Flying Fox. They are very peaceful, social and pigs when it comes to food. I keep the Rotala to hide the filter and soak up nutriments. Actually, after having the tank for twenty years, my interest waxes and wanes. I am currently in a waxing phase and we had just removed a couple of buckets full of plants after the trim. The left side will be overgrown too, in a couple of months. The swords are relatively new and have yet to fill out. The crypts are five years old. The one old grey Ram is nine years old! He had five other buddies that have all died years ago.

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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-01-2009, 08:44 PM
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That is amazing. I can't believe that you have had that tank going for so long. I supposed with the built in stand, you wouldn't have much choice though.


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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-01-2009, 08:50 PM
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Your basement picture links don't work. Sick plumbing.


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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-01-2009, 08:56 PM
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fabulous tank! when i buy a house will you wire up a tank system for me?! (i don't think i'll ever have enough money )
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-02-2009, 02:30 AM Thread Starter
 
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You'll have plenty of money in time, just keep working hard. What you won't have is youth, enjoy it.
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-02-2009, 02:53 AM
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Incredible tank and phenomenal plumbing ideas.... the type of ideas that only come after twenty years of experimentation I guess. Has the tank always been planted? What has been your biggest challenge?


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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-02-2009, 01:20 PM Thread Starter
 
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Yes, I have had fish tanks all of my life. A 15 and a 29 as a kid. A 29 when I was in college. But I was never able to grow plants, just fish. One day in my apartment I cut the top off of a 5 gallon water bottle, put some gravel and peat moss in it, filled it up with tap water and put a lace plant bulb in there and set it by the window. The lace plant grew like a weed, filled the bottle, and then died back. That was the beginning of my plant escapades.

Just like everyone else, my biggest challenge is algae control. It is a delicate balance when growing aquatic plants. One of the things that I have learned is to not try to change the ‘natural’ parameters too much. The water quality, temperature and pH will tend toward what is ‘natural’ for your area. I am very lucky to have a deep well with good water, and dilute that with RO, but after that I leave it alone, the pH be damned. I have tried keeping the temp up for discus and rams, but that causes a lot of problems with condensation in the winter.

The next biggest challenge so far is to design foolproof connectors that will never foul or go bad for the fluorescent tubes. Maybe some day.

I guess that I should add that the 180 was conceived, designed and implemented as a plant tank, and has always been planted. It is my experience that plants and fish, ironically, don't do well together. A small fish load is okay, but it doesn't seem to help the plants in any way that I can tell. I have successfully kept discus for awhile with the plants, but it is much easier to keep discus, anglefish and rams in a tank with no plants or gravel. I actually got the crypts to bloom last year, and the lilly also.






Last edited by Redbone; 03-25-2009 at 12:28 PM.
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-24-2009, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
 
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-24-2009, 10:30 PM
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Nice tank, horrible looking stone work.... Coming from a bricklayer of course.

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Originally Posted by cdwill View Post
"C'mon, they're just plants, man, no big deal -- try some"
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 03-24-2009, 10:32 PM Thread Starter
 
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It's rustic.
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