2.5 Gallon High-Tech(ish) build - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-14-2012, 05:45 PM Thread Starter
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2.5 Gallon High-Tech(ish) build

Alright, I am going to turn my tiny Betta tank (I know it's not the best size for a betta, but it's better than the 1/2 gallon bowl he WAS in!) into a pretty high tech tank. Enough to grow some HC or something. So let's get started! If I got three-four replies for a plant as rare as hydrocotyle tripartitia, I think you guys have enough planted tanks that you can give me a lot of help.
I'll give you what I'm going for so far. I want a really good light, my tank is 12" long. I need it to be high enough for just about anything. For substrate I am getting a mineralized soil mixture, with red clay and the potash mix, etc. I'm looking for a good CO2 system, preferably under $100. I know the Fluval nano one is kinda a rip-off and the replacement canisters are expensive, but on a 2.5, each of those canisters are gonna last FOREVER. Any thoughts? I'm gonna get a versa top for it. Oh yeah, and the most pain in the heiny thing, fertilizers. Currently, I only have Seachem Flourish. What others is best to get? Also, what are the coolest plants to have? HC is on my "list", Any thoughts? For anyone who didn't want to read all of the above type, here's a rough summary of what are my questions:

1. What's a good light, enough to support just about anything?

2. What's a good, but cheap nano CO2 system?

3. What's your thoughts on the Fluval one?

4. What fertilizers do I need? I would like to support some really high tech stuff.

5. What are some awesome plants to get for it when it is set up? I'm already going for HC.

Thank you all so much for helping, I really appreciate it!
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-14-2012, 05:53 PM
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1. Daylight CFL bulb. You pick the size, as you'll then be picking whether or not you want it suspended above the tank.

2. Good and cheap don't go hand-in-hand. The cheapest is DIY, which works really well for small tanks like that. Then paintball - but if you're spending $50-$75 for a paintball setup, you might as well just spend $100 on a full-on dual stage regulator and CO2 cylinder.

3. My thoughts: NO.

4. EI does with dry ferts. Or mix them yourself with RO or distilled water.

5. You can keep all kinds of plants in a high-tech situation. Most stems you can keep, so long as you keep them trimmed. Your best bet is to take a look at a few of the nano tank journals to see their plant lists because there are just tons of plants that would work well for you.


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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-14-2012, 06:03 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by somewhatshocked View Post
1. Daylight CFL bulb. You pick the size, as you'll then be picking whether or not you want it suspended above the tank.

2. Good and cheap don't go hand-in-hand. The cheapest is DIY, which works really well for small tanks like that. Then paintball - but if you're spending $50-$75 for a paintball setup, you might as well just spend $100 on a full-on dual stage regulator and CO2 cylinder.

3. My thoughts: NO.

4. EI does with dry ferts. Or mix them yourself with RO or distilled water.

5. You can keep all kinds of plants in a high-tech situation. Most stems you can keep, so long as you keep them trimmed. Your best bet is to take a look at a few of the nano tank journals to see their plant lists because there are just tons of plants that would work well for you.
The daylight bulb - Would a 15w 6,500k bulb bring me up to high lighting?

I am pretty new to this, and I apologize, but specifically what do you do to obtain a paintball setup? Is it, like, build it yourself? I didn't want to do DIY because it grows plants the best when you control the amount of CO2, and there is no real possibility of leaks in pressurized systems.

I apologize again, but what's EI? Which dry fertilizers should/would I get? I would like it to be enough ferts to support anything you could think up (or just most of known plants).

I'll ask about certain plants, then I'll check with this forum to see if it's ok.

P.S. If anyone else has an answer to the latest questions, feel free to answer them.

Last edited by phoenixkiller; 05-14-2012 at 08:06 PM.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-14-2012, 08:13 PM
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A 15w would be perfect for a standard 2.5gal tank. I use them. On some tanks, I use 26w (ran out of 13w and 15w bulbs) raised above the surface quite a bit. The good thing about CFLs is that you can raise and lower them as needed.

The DIY forum will have lots of details about paintball setups. It's a paintball tank, on/off valve, needle valve, et al.

There's always the possibility of leaks in pressurized systems. DIY in a small tank like that grows plants really well. I get about 9-10 weeks per bottle with champagne yeast. My advice is to get a full-sized regulator if you want to do anything other than DIY. It's the safest and cheapest route in the long run.

EI stands for Estimative Index. There's a sticky in the Fert subsection of the forum about dosing regimes that will help you calculate the amount of each fertilizer you'll need for your tank. EI is a process of loading the tank up with Micro and Macro fertilizers, essentially. It covers all plants.


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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-14-2012, 08:20 PM
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Not sure if I can post links to other forums, but here is a link to EI (Estimative Index) guide: refer to above post

A paintball setup is a DIY setup, you can add a regulator to them, at least tahts my understanding, but I'm still new to all this stuff as well, so pls correct me if I'm wrong senior members.

Last edited by 82nd_Airborne; 05-14-2012 at 08:43 PM. Reason: Deleted other outside forum link
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-14-2012, 08:29 PM Thread Starter
Oopsie doosies.
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by somewhatshocked View Post
A 15w would be perfect for a standard 2.5gal tank. I use them. On some tanks, I use 26w (ran out of 13w and 15w bulbs) raised above the surface quite a bit. The good thing about CFLs is that you can raise and lower them as needed.

The DIY forum will have lots of details about paintball setups. It's a paintball tank, on/off valve, needle valve, et al.

There's always the possibility of leaks in pressurized systems. DIY in a small tank like that grows plants really well. I get about 9-10 weeks per bottle with champagne yeast. My advice is to get a full-sized regulator if you want to do anything other than DIY. It's the safest and cheapest route in the long run.

EI stands for Estimative Index. There's a sticky in the Fert subsection of the forum about dosing regimes that will help you calculate the amount of each fertilizer you'll need for your tank. EI is a process of loading the tank up with Micro and Macro fertilizers, essentially. It covers all plants.
If I was planning to sell the plants in the 2.5, would DIY CO2 actually grow it fast... like, at all? A user from a different forum said that if you are using DIY CO2, it won't grow plants very fast, and you might as well forget trying to sell plants if that's the way you're going. I am going to PM you on how to make your champagne yeast DIY CO2 set up. I have never heard of such a long amount of time on a single bottle!!
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-12-2012, 10:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phoenixkiller View Post
If I was planning to sell the plants in the 2.5, would DIY CO2 actually grow it fast... like, at all? A user from a different forum said that if you are using DIY CO2, it won't grow plants very fast, and you might as well forget trying to sell plants if that's the way you're going. I am going to PM you on how to make your champagne yeast DIY CO2 set up. I have never heard of such a long amount of time on a single bottle!!
co2 would definitely give you better results. For best results I would also dose ferts. DIY co2 (if set up right) can be just as useful/effective as pressurized on smaller tanks.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-13-2012, 03:16 AM Thread Starter
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co2 would definitely give you better results. For best results I would also dose ferts. DIY co2 (if set up right) can be just as useful/effective as pressurized on smaller tanks.
My DIY CO2 system worked for about 2 days, then kinda died. I was pretty mad with it, just trashed it. As ya know, getting a paintball set up instead (Unless I win the regulator RAOK that you posted on lol).

No matter how hard you try, you cannot escape this hobby. You have been warned.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-13-2012, 03:37 AM
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My DIY CO2 system worked for about 2 days, then kinda died. I was pretty mad with it, just trashed it. As ya know, getting a paintball set up instead (Unless I win the regulator RAOK that you posted on lol).
Just remember that you'll also need a co2 tank. Usually they go for about $50. Do you have a drop checker and diffuser and check valve?
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