150 gallon high tech&light tank.... - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 01:43 AM Thread Starter
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150 gallon high tech&light tank....

INTRO
Wow, i must say i have seen some stunning tanks on here. I am pretty new to this hobby as far as plants go, but i have kept fresh water fish, and reefs for years. My introduction to this hobby was accidently stumbling onto Amano's tanks, as well as the top ten tanks in a magazine. In many of my cichlid tanks i have always kept live plants as apposed to plastic, but never anything as seriouse as this. I am starting this build thread in hopes to learn your wonderful hobby as well as document my tank. So if your here and read this long post please offer me some advice.

Tank
My tank is an AGA 150 gallon tank. Tank was purchased in my attempts to set up a large reef. I have actually been sitting on this tank for 6 months waiting to start it up. Due to a move i decided to hold off until we moved, giving me time to build a custom stand, and aquire and sell my salt equipment. The tank is reef ready and will drain to a sump beneath. I have built my stand pipes very tall to eliminate turbulance in my overflows to keep gas exchange to a minimum.

Equipment List

Have
1.Tank
2.Sump
3.Return Pump
4.Two reactors i will use for carbon and other chem. filtration.
5.Mag12 return pump
6.2x250w metal halides

Need
1. Co2 system ( Need help on this. Was thinking semi automatic on account i want to budget about 150$ to this. Is this one any good?)
http://www.drsfostersmith.com/produc...35&pcatid=9935
2. Bio-Balls
3. Rock
4. Substrate (need lots of help here, no idea what to use)
5. Ferts (again no clue please help)

If i have missed anything please help and bring to my attention. It is my goal to do this right and jump in head first. Now for some images of what i have so far.

1.Tank


Stand i built


Tank and stand


Lights



Please feel free to take me under yalls wings and guide me to excellence.
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post #2 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 01:50 AM Thread Starter
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Also inhabitant wise, i was wondering if anyone had any success keeping tropheus in a heavily planted tank?

I think it would be awesome to see a huge school of pineapples or rainbows in my tank. mixed in with some cockatoo apistos.
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post #3 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 04:12 AM
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I like the baby in the tank, heck with the plants.
Nice size tank!

Substrate: Eco-Complete, Flourite, and ADA substrates have gotten mostly positive reviews here. I have had flourite before and liked it, but i switched to ADA Amazonia II and like it even better. ADA tends to be more expensive though, so if you're on a short budget, you may want to go with Eco-Complete or Flourite. There are also other products that some people have found to be good for growing plants, i'm sure someone will comment on this.

Co2: Don't know much about it. A 10-20 gallon co2 tank would probably be ideal for a 150 gallon, if you get one smaller you'll have to constantly refill it. But i do think that a lot of the co2 you inject into the water will be lost due to the overflow, so this may be a problem.

Ferts: Pfertz.com may be a good place to look. I use it and am very happy with the results.

Hope this helps a little, and welcome to the forum!
AzFishKid
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post #4 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 04:20 AM
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I love my Cockatoo Apistos! best personality FW fish i've seen in a long time.

With a tank that big get some large pieces of driftwood and drill out some holes, fish love to dart in and out of hollow logs. And with those fish you want they'll have a good home where you put it, rather than them finding their own resting place hidden in the back of the tank where you can't see them. Learned that through trial and error.
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post #5 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 04:28 AM
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Awesome tank! I love the big boys!
Just to add to what azfk said, you can get all of those things at greenleafaquariums.com Orlando is a member of this forum and has excellent customer service. He has different types of ferts, a wide selction of co2 regulators (you can get just the regulator or the reg + the co2 cylinder) I would go with the biggest co2 cylinder possible. You can also get your substrate from GLA or locally if you don't want to have to pay for shipping on it, but most likely the local prices will be a little bit higher to make up for shipping. It just depends on how much more expensive it would be locally.
I highly recommend aquasoil amazonia I. You can get that from http://www.adgshop.com/Aqua_Soil_Amazonia_p/104-021.htm.

The overflows will most likely outgas a lot of your co2, but if you do a durso overflow- http://www.dursostandpipes.com/ then you will both reduce noise, and probably outgas less co2 because the water won't be falling from so high. As long you have plenty of co2 going into the display and good circulation, you should be okay, even though a lot of it will be outgased when going into the sump/ down the overflows.

HTH

-Chris

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post #6 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 05:07 AM
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I think that your current bioload is way to high. And I imagine changing diapers underwater would end up in some amazing nitrogen spikes

I don't hear good things about the CO2 equipment from DrF&S. On a tank this size, I'd get the good stuff now, since in the long run it will save you much more time, hassle, and $$.

Hate to say it, but I really think you've got too much lighting with those MHs. Even with pressurized CO2, I think you'll end up struggling for the right kind of coverage. If you suspend them and then are able to play with their height over the tank, this would be your best bet for trying to make them work.

If you can sell them for what you paid for them, I'd personally go with T5HOs instead. You could get a better fixture for less $$, and they're more energy-efficient and don't generate nearly as much heat.

As far as the cichlids go, you might try setting up an area just for them with sand, and protecting planted areas with drifwood, rocks, etc... but IME cichlids tend to do their own "aquascaping" and aren't ever too impressed with our efforts... they redo things to suit themselves. And since they're in the tank 24/7 with not much else to do, we tend to be on the losing side of that battle...





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post #7 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 05:49 AM
 
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+1 for GLA and excellent service.

I'd also recommend buying a decent CO2 package and take time investigating co2 distribution. A sump works fine, but having it sealable will help with gas exchange. Also with a high pressure pump you can look into a mazzei for co2 distribution.

Some big tank journals that might help you..

https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/ta...est-56k-2.html
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/ta...est-56k-2.html
http://www.barrreport.com/general-pl...-thus-far.html
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post #8 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 05:49 AM
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This is going to be a great project. There seem to be a lot of people working on big tanks these days and it looks like you have a good start. I like that stand. I concur on that light--I imagine it is quite intense and that it might shine in a focused area. If you cannot switch that one with T5 lighting then you might get better spread by hanging it up higher and also use diffuser plate of the kind used for light fixtures.

That Tropheus cichlid might be disruptive in this tank, and he might also find the water params unfavorable. I understand that those fish prefer high pH and hard water.
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post #9 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 12:39 PM
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Before getting a CO2 package, check as to where you can get tanks filled and if they do an exchange or refill. Getting a nice new tank and having to exchange it sucks.

You may have to raise the MH lights to keep the algae in check.

Dr Fosters and Smith sell the Azoo regulator which is good, but the only needle valve is the clippard, which you would want to change out to something better.

John



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post #10 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 02:04 PM
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Nice setup there. +1 for GLA.

Patience is the name of the game.

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post #11 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 02:28 PM
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Awesome stand. That's a deep tank, I'm not sure that T5HOs would reach the substrate for foreground plants. I really like T5HOs but my tank is only 22 inches deep.
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post #12 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 03:12 PM
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I just got a large tank and yesterday was thinking about filling it up and putting my son in it
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post #13 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 03:15 PM
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I have two teenagers you can borrow. : )
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post #14 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 03:41 PM Thread Starter
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Wow cool, lots of replies...

I hope to keep you all around to help me along the way.

I know i will have some c02 loss due to having a sump, but the tank was bought and almost set up for a reef before i switched directions. I will not have a covered sump, but will submerge the inlets to alleviate alot of splashing. On the standpipes i basically built my own durso. The water will have only about a 2" fall into my overflows.

All in all like i said i know i will have some issues, but cant really gauge them untill set-up.

As for substrates thanks for all the advice as well. I have some flourite in a 2.5 gallon, and have been please with the looks, but would like something finer for the cichlids, but i may just give them a spot to dig hidden in the tank somewhere.

With the lights i went 250 because the will penatrate the tanks depth. A 250w halide can penatrate up to 24 inches, and mine being 28 i needed the boost (in terms of reef). I will be using these light as it is what i have and dont want to sell and re-buy.

My fish list is the problem i have not quite figured out yet. I have read all of travis's build thread and am amazed by his tank. He has kept cichlids in his planted tank, and has been one of the prettier tanks i have seen. I hope to keep tropheus, and will just work on a trial and error basis hopefully allowing me to keep a small shoal of 7 or 9. I will also want apistos, rams, and few other tangs (birchardis, calvus).

On the c02 system if you guys wouldnt mind linking me to some that you would purchase that would be awesome.
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post #15 of 59 (permalink) Old 08-10-2009, 05:10 PM
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tagging along ..!!! nice tank btw


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