ADA Mini-M: Mom's Tank - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 08:08 AM Thread Starter
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ADA Mini-M: Mom's Tank

So in November 2008 my girlfriend suggested we make a planted tank for my mom, who is Japanese and would really appreciate a planted aquarium. So we proceeded with starting it in an ADA Mini-M tank on November 2nd, 2008. Here are some photos of the progress and I thought I'd share them since we are very proud of the results. We are really proud of what we have made, especially considering that we knew absolutely nothing about planted aquariums in general before October 2008.

So here we go, enjoy the journey and comments are definitely welcome!

November 2: Tank started. We only had glosso at the time.

November 5: We planted some hairgrass and had the unusual idea of planting H.C. in the background instead of the foreground, thinking "it will look like glosso way far away!" That idea soon fell through and we came to realize that it was not a good idea, and that's why we haven't really seen it anywhere else.

November 9: Tank is cycling in our living room. Our 60P (empty) tank is on that black stand behind this tank, with the Do!Aqua glassware sitting next to it. Filter is a Tom's Aquatic Mini Canister filter C-80.

November 14: Planted some more stemmed plants and added CO2 injection. We have a stand that has a 5lb. CO2 canister that's split into multiple lines, so it was a snap to add this one into the system with it's own needle valve. Note that we haven't caught on to the H.C. fault yet.

November 25: We finally got some real plants in the background and some more glosso and hairgrass growth. We also have some new algae friends as well. We tested the water and it's close to being cycled enough for some Amano shrimp, which we will add in about a week.

.... Continued in next post

Last edited by dmcentire; 08-17-2014 at 02:35 PM. Reason: Images have all disappeared, removing them.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 08:25 AM Thread Starter
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Continued

November 30: Added some Amano shrimp workers - get busy guys!

November 30: Current status of the growth. The lighting is a Satellite dual 18W (36W total) lamp sitting on a temporary metal shelf rack stand.

November 30: Another view of the temporary light and stand.

December 9: Growth status. Plants are growing pretty fast.

December 31: Betta moved in. My girlfriend and I had different thoughts on the fish idea. She said "One fish, your mom can bond with it and give it a name" and I said "I like the serenity of a small school of fish." She won.

** Happy New Year **

Continued ...

Last edited by dmcentire; 08-17-2014 at 02:38 PM. Reason: Images have all disappeared, removing them.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 08:35 AM
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wow. your tank looks nice
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 08:44 AM Thread Starter
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Continued

January 3: Start of stand customizing, it's a Nanocube 14 gallon stand.

January 3: I fashioned a light stand using 1/2" copper piping and a conduit bender. The light is a Coralife 36W (18x2) light. Note that this light does NOT come in a freshwater version, only a saltwater kind with 50/50 lamps. It's a standard 2G11 straight pin setup, so I replaced the bulbs with 6700K. Yeah, I probably voided the warranty by opening it up and drilling holes in the top for the steel suspension cabling.

January 4: Light mounted on stand using a slightly large copper tubing pipe that the stand slides into. This allows the light to freely rotate left and right for servicing the tank. Also note the holes drilled for the filter and CO2 tubing, which will be hidden inside the cabinet.

January 4: Testing the tank on the stand. CO2 injector has not been replaced back into the tank just yet.

January 10: Betta is happy and all testing going well.

January 10: Detail of cabinet. Inside is the mini filter, the ADA CO2 setup, the bubble counter and needle valve, the light/CO2 solenoid timer, and a door activated interior light.

January 10: Tank has been moved to mom's house and is installed.

January 10: Girlfriend looking on.

January 10: Project complete!

We agreed to go over to her place to do water changes, etc., since we didn't want to just dump that work onto her. However, after talking about it with her she is really interested in taking over the maintenance and work needed for the tank. Also, since she is Japanese we took over some of our Aqua Journal magazines and had her translate some important text for us so we could better understand what the articles were talking about.

Thanks for reading and your time, and comments are welcome!

Dennis McEntire

Last edited by dmcentire; 08-17-2014 at 02:39 PM. Reason: Images have all disappeared, removing them.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 03:20 PM
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Very nice of you to get such an awesome gift for your mom. Not only did you buy quality hardware, but you put alot of time/thought/effort into it!

I really like the reds, they stand out!

At first I thought it was going to stay at your place. I tried to "gift" a fish tank to my gf who lives with me.. but she knew I was only using it as an excuse to have another tank =X
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 03:51 PM
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Looks great! How sturdy is that stand? It looks to be a good fit for the Mini M

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"C'mon, they're just plants, man, no big deal -- try some"
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 04:05 PM
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Sweet setup, the tank looks great...I'm jealous! How is the flow with the tom rapids canister so far below?
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 05:12 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your comments

Thank you for the replies so far.

The stand is VERY sturdy - It's very well built and designed to hold a 14 gallon nanocube tank, so I feel really confident that it's well made. I had tried a few other stands, and yes, I found some to be very shady in the sturdiness department. On the other hand, the stand that the 60P is on didn't seem very strong, even though it was designed for a 20 gallon tank, so I reinforced it with a wood frame inside the thing just to be sure.

The Tom's filter flow is great! I had read some stories before about the thing not being able to push water up a distance of more than 2 feet, but believe me you can go much further. I have about 5 of these filters running on different tanks. One of them it's just cycling a new tank and the filter is on the floor with the tank on a table. There is easily more than 4 feet of hose between the two and it runs just fine. In fact on almost all of the tanks I have to use a flow valve to slow it down. I use the Marineland quick disconnects (seen in the cabinet photo above) for doing this. It allows me to shut off the flow on both sides and remove the filter without spilling much, and it keeps the water in the tubing for priming it up when I put the filter back in. It has the added benefit of being able to vary the outflow.

We gave the tank to my mom under the condition that "she did NOT have to keep it for any reason" in case she was unsure about the upkeep. But the "maintenance plan" my girlfriend and I are including will have the added benefit of visiting with my mom, who said to me once "She's the best one, Dennis, keep her." Fortunately for everyone she liked the tank and wants to keep it. My mom is also a floral designer so I am excited about the prospect that she wants to do some arranging in another tank. I'm going to set her up with an empty tank, some stones and plants, and see how it goes.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 05:17 PM
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I see you switched from the Do Aqua pipes to the Cal Aqua Pipes any reasoning? Also did the suction cups with the DoAqua Pipes ome with it? I need to find an aesthetic way of raising my ADA Lily pipe up at nite. I may use one of my Cal Aqua bubble counter suction cups and zip tie it to my tubing as it wouldn't look too bad I don't think.

Craig

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Quote:
Originally Posted by cdwill View Post
"C'mon, they're just plants, man, no big deal -- try some"
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 05:22 PM Thread Starter
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I personally love the Cal Aqua fluxo nano flow pipes. They look nice, have suction cup mounts (which the smaller Do!Aqua stuff does not), and are very easy to clean. They're easy to clean because of the fact that the most they bend is around in one curve, which allows me to use one of those bendy brushes to get all the way through. On the ADA stuff they have an extra bend that makes using one of those cleaning brushes impossible. I once saw an employee at AFA having the same cleaning problem, and then he just dumped it in their bottle of Superge solution (bleach mix) for cleaning.

On the ADA stuff I have to use a spare suction cup from something else, and after cutting small slits in it you can feed a tie strap through and secure it to the tubing. I also talked to Orlando at Green Leaf Aquariums (in FL) and he said that he might be able to get Cal Aqua to put TWO suction cup mount mounts on the Cal Aqua fluxo pipes. If that gets done then it will really hold in place. It might appear that I have two on the tank now but the upper one it not attached to the pipes at all, it's just there as a spacer to keep them parallel to the side of the tank.
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 05:26 PM Thread Starter
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Just a bit on the Cal Aqua pipes

Here are some more photos of the Cal Aqua pipes on other tanks I have:

Hopefully you guys all have a fat pipe to the internet because I have so many photos on this thread

Last edited by dmcentire; 08-17-2014 at 02:39 PM. Reason: Images have all disappeared, removing them.
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 05:56 PM
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I do thanks for the pics. I'm actually selling off my Cal Aqua set in favor of the ADA set. Partially because of having a 10mm return on the eheim 2211.

Nice pics though. My thread is really pic heavy as well.

Craig

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Quote:
Originally Posted by cdwill View Post
"C'mon, they're just plants, man, no big deal -- try some"
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-15-2009, 09:28 PM
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Awesome tank and gift!
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-16-2009, 02:22 AM
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WOW I love the tank and the Glosso!!!

Eheim Classic 2213
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-22-2009, 08:59 PM
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Wow! That is so beautiful that it made me want to start a betta tank again!

Any updates?
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