MY FIRST POST - VINTAGE 2.5 Gal. NANO - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-24-2010, 04:37 PM Thread Starter
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MY FIRST POST - VINTAGE 2.5 Gal. NANO

After a 20 year hiatus from keeping 20 - 30 gal. aquariums I've decided to get back into the hobby with a 2.5 gal. vintage tank. It's a Metaframe (stainless steel frame with slate bottom). I bought it at a garage sale years ago for a few bucks and forgot about it until a couple of weeks ago when I rediscovered it in a corner of my garage. I cleaned it up and tested it to see if it leaked. Amazingly after 50- 60 years the black tar they used to seal it is still doing the job. I compared it to a modern 2.5 gal. tank and mine is shorter, slightly wider, and the same height. The measurements I took of my vintage tank are 10.25" L X 6.5" W X 8.125" T and the modern tank are 12.125" L X 6.125" W X 8.125" H. So mine is about 2" shorter and 1/2" wider. If I use the formula L X W X H X .00433 I get 2.34 gal. for my vintage tank and 2.61 gal. for the modern tank.
Has anyone ever tried using Hydor's 25W Hydrokable to heat a 2.5 gal. tank? Hydor indicates it's for 10 gal. and over but 25W is what is normally used in a tank this size. I know undergravel heating is supposed to be good for plants.
I plan on using dwarf plants, some cherry shrimp, a couple of snails, and some Endler's Livebearers. The retro or art deco look of the tank is stunning in my opinion. I plan on using a TOM micro filter and no CO2 system. CO2 seems like an expense and hassle that I think I can do without. High CO2 levels don't occur in these plant's habitats and I believe it just makes plants, and algae, grow faster. If you have the correct balance of animals and plants then the animals should provide enough of the CO2 and fertilizer for the plants. I also plan on using eco-complete as the gravel and a piece of petrified wood.
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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-24-2010, 10:00 PM
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We need a pic!
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-24-2010, 10:13 PM
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exactly what I was thinking :-)


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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-24-2010, 10:31 PM
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Pics!

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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-25-2010, 07:58 AM
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Welcome! I'm also back from a hiatus.. a bit shorter than yours

The reason people inject CO2 is because the balancing is hard. More fish = more CO2, but on the other hand, the ammonia they produce may not be metabolized by the plants/bacteria quickly enough.

That said, no CO2 is fine. Your best bet is the Walstad/El Natural method in which the fauna is in balance with the flora. Upside is low maintenance/upkeep. Downside is limited plant choice.

Ya got some research ahead of ya haha

Quote:
Originally Posted by davrx View Post
I plan on using a TOM micro filter and no CO2 system. CO2 seems like an expense and hassle that I think I can do without. High CO2 levels don't occur in these plant's habitats and I believe it just makes plants, and algae, grow faster. If you have the correct balance of animals and plants then the animals should provide enough of the CO2 and fertilizer for the plants. I also plan on using eco-complete as the gravel and a piece of petrified wood.
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-25-2010, 10:57 AM
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Pic Pic Pic I love vintage tanks!
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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-25-2010, 03:44 PM
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Welcome to the planted tank & welcome back to the hobby!

I'll just post a few random thoughts relating to your post here...

This might be a better choice of heater for your application:

http://www.catalinaaquarium.com/prod...roducts_id=975

Substrate heaters have never been shown to be of any benefit to plants.

You didn't state what type/wattage of lighting you plan to use so I'll reserve comment on your C02 related assertions. The light/C02/Nutrient balance is
harder to achieve & maintain in smaller tanks.

"in my opinion" 2.3 gallons is far too small to house even the smallest of fish...but a great size for inverts such as shrimp.

My first aquariums were Metaframe (back in the 60s) and I still love the way they look... Please post some pictures of yours when you get a chance!

Larry
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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-25-2010, 07:48 PM
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pic?
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-25-2010, 11:54 PM
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Metaframe!!!

That brings back memories from childhood!

Can't wait to see that
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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-26-2010, 02:42 AM Thread Starter
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Heater Suggestion

Larry, thanks for the link. I looked online for a small heater but they all seemed too long. I found a Hydor Theo 25W at the local pet store and have been using it but I'm going to try to return it after I receive the one in the link you sent me. The Theo seems to have an unreliable thermostat. This morning when I got up it was 82 degrees when I had set it and checked it at 78 the day before.
I was using the Tom Dive Clean Micro filter but it didn't do a good job so I got a Duetto 50 and am going to try it. The Tom was what I really wanted because it's so tiny but I think the Duetto will do a better job.
My light is a 250W compact fluorescent hanging above a neat Victorian marble top table. The light is in a big deep bowl industrial type fixture hanging from a vintage iron/wood pulley. I had been using this light and table exclusively for a Victorian walnut terrarium that I have carnivorous plants in and an antique apothecary jar with some moss in it. I thought the art deco meets victoriana looked neat.
Anyway I will get photos posted soon.
I checked with one of the foremost breeders of Endler's and he stated that I could keep 10 in the tank with no problem. I currently have a combination of 7 males and females. Beautiful little fish. I also have 20 Cherry Red Shrimp. I have an ammonia monitor hanging in the tank in case things go wrong as I have never had a tank less than 10 gal. before.
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post #11 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-27-2010, 05:19 PM
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Nice!

I have a 10 gal. metaframe. I managed to score two matching hoods last year for $20! They work great with spiral fluorescent bulbs.
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post #12 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-27-2010, 06:32 PM
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pic please


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post #13 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-27-2010, 07:01 PM
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Your welcome! I've had good luck with the Catalina products, always willing
to refer others to quality stuff.

I hope you meant to type 25 watts! Even at that wattage you'll want to keep the bulb a good distance from the water surface... having that much light over 2.3 gallons of water without injecting C02 is going to be a delicate balancing act.

*** WARNING, PERSONAL OPINION FOLLOWS, READ AT YOUR OWN RISK***

I never said that you "can't" keep Endlers in your tank, I said that in my opinion 2.3 gallons is far too small to house even the smallest of fish... how you maintain your tank & inhabitants is for you to decide.

HTH

Larry
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post #14 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-28-2010, 12:50 AM Thread Starter
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Larry, no you read correctly, 250W which is equivalent to 750W incandescent. I think I may try a DIY CO2 using some chemistry equipment.
I wasn't offended by your comments about not keeping fish in such a small tank. This is an experiment on my part to see if it's possible. I know the smaller the tank the more difficult it is to keep a viable environment. What I'd really like to do is get a larger 1920's Jewel tank or even a Victorian one in the 5-10 gal. range. I've bid on a couple on e-bay but have been unsuccessful so far. I feel fortunate that I snagged a circa 1870 terrarium from e-bay. Only one I've ever seen come up for auction that was that old. I will be loading photos shortly.
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post #15 of 32 (permalink) Old 02-28-2010, 01:19 AM Thread Starter
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Photos (finally)

https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/at...1&d=1267323494
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