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post #1 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-18-2009, 03:34 AM Thread Starter
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Long Timer, First Timer - 2.5 Journal (Beware 56k'ers!)

Hey guys, well I joined this forum a long time ago, when I had my planted 29 gallon, but never made a post. Did tons of research for the tank, and things were going well...until I had to go away for 3 weeks, coming home to a tank that was way past saving, and with a busy school schedule, decided to just go back to fake plants.

Here is a pic of the 29 when I had it all going, with diy CO2 and all. To be honest, I dont remember all the plants I had in there even. Just a quick shot from looking at it, i think there was Anubias Nana, Corkscrew Vals, I think the one with some red coloring is Ludwigia, but don't remember clearly, some Wisteria in the back, Java Moss on the wood, and some hairgrass in the front. Granted I may not be correct as it has been a few years since I've had the tank up and running with plants.


Well I'm now in college, and things are going smoothly. I'm ready to get back into the planted side of things a bit, but only going with a 2.5 this time, as I don't have the space for the 29 anymore (which is at my dad's).

So, I recently went with my roommate to petsmart (which is 30 mins. away) so that I could give him advice on fish for his 10 gallon. Well, while we were there, I saw the 2.5's for like 10 bucks, and my desires got the best of me, so I got it. I already have a Red Sea Nano filter from back in the day that I'm using, and bought a cheap desk lamp from wally-world with a 27 watt bulb.
I saw some of the ADA tanks, and rimless ones on here and decided that I would remove the plastic pieces and clean up the silicone a bit.

Well upon doing this, I got a little rambunctious, and cracked the glass--DOH! But with a little silicone I was able to mend it up. Since this saves me a 30 minute drive and another 10 bucks, its good enough for me. Here's a shot


And the view looking out


As you can see the light sits up about 5 inches above the water so I hope that I won't have problems with algae because of it being 27 watts.

I have a few things leftover from when my tank was planted before, including all my testing kits (all basic color chart dropper kits), some Flourish Excel, Some Flourish Root Tabs, and all of my dosing stuff from GregWatson.com. I'm not sure if anyone still uses his stuff, or if he is still around, but I have the powdered forms of KNO3 (Potassium Nitrate), KH2PO4 (Mono-Potassium Phosphate), and Plantex CSM+ Boron. Now, I dont remember exactly what all these are, nor do I remember how much I dosed, but I do still have them I need them in my 2.5, granted I will have to make really large solutions if I want to get the concentrations down to where I can dose 1-2 PPM.
Right now, I have some basic aquarium gravel that I was planning on using that is light brown in color, but it seems as though every person on here uses that ADA Amazonian stuff. Haha when I had my planted 29 gallon, no one was talking about ADA products, so I've just now been reading about them.

Took a basic PH and KH test of the tap water and looks like we're dealing with a PH of around 8, and a KH of about 5-6.

For this tank I will probably be doing a DIY Jello CO2, but don't really know about the macros/micros. Guess I should look over some of the old printouts I have and threads I use to be involved in.

So, since I'm tired of typing for now, what do you guys think I should do about substrate, plants, dosing, etc. I havn't started any hardscaping due to the fact that I have nothing to hardscape with :P. I will either try to find some stuff around here like at the lake, or I may get stuff from members on the site. If I'm able to, I will definitely be ordering my plants and stuff from fellow members to help support others in the hobby, though this tank need remain moderately low cost.

Sorry about the long winded post, essays and papers and such have plagued me with an ability to keep going and going and going. Much like the energizer bunny :P.

With this, I will end with a picture. Let's call this "Stage 1"

Last edited by lookin_around; 02-28-2009 at 08:52 PM.
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post #2 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-18-2009, 03:10 PM
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Hey there,

A nice start you have. Your first tank pic reminds me of a river I rafted in a while ago!

For the 2.5g I would suggest a Hagen Mini filter. I LOVE it. Best filter I have in my opinion. Ive tried the red sea filter. Personally I hate the flow it gives to the tank. Anyways just throwing out ideas!
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post #3 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-18-2009, 03:32 PM
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Looking forward to your mini! Your first tank looked amazing!
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post #4 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-18-2009, 03:39 PM
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looks good so far, ill be awaiting the for the next post of how things go


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post #5 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-18-2009, 11:18 PM
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I've had the same setup you've got there, rimless 2.5 with the same light and also had a Red Sea Nano HOB but I'm gonna have to agree with thief on this, get a dark or black background for the tank and you can't even see the Hagen Mini Elite Internal Filter. Plus it makes hooking up DIY CO2 a breeze as right now I've got the tubing for my CO2 where the venturi valve was and in such a small tank it shoots it out and sticks around in the WC for a good while. I had my doubts before I got it and even while I was running it at first but now I think its here to stay. As far as other recommendations, I'm having good luck so far with Eco-Complete in mine, but from what I've read and seen on here, ADA Aquasoil is the better choice. Oh and I feel ya on the whole college making you type more and more, I've been trying my best to keep things short & sweet on here but boy is it tough! I'll have to keep checking to see how this one turns out!


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post #6 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-20-2009, 11:21 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rrrrramos View Post
I've had the same setup you've got there, rimless 2.5 with the same light and also had a Red Sea Nano HOB but I'm gonna have to agree with thief on this, get a dark or black background for the tank and you can't even see the Hagen Mini Elite Internal Filter. Plus it makes hooking up DIY CO2 a breeze as right now I've got the tubing for my CO2 where the venturi valve was and in such a small tank it shoots it out and sticks around in the WC for a good while. I had my doubts before I got it and even while I was running it at first but now I think its here to stay. As far as other recommendations, I'm having good luck so far with Eco-Complete in mine, but from what I've read and seen on here, ADA Aquasoil is the better choice. Oh and I feel ya on the whole college making you type more and more, I've been trying my best to keep things short & sweet on here but boy is it tough! I'll have to keep checking to see how this one turns out!
Your tank is looking quite nice. Haha nice to see someone that knows what I mean about the writing stuff.

Well today I've had some extra time, so I've been playing around with the hardscape...I may want to switch to some amazonia or something, but I'm really trying to resist spending the extra cash haha. So I got a few rocks from the lake, boiled em for a while and now I'm trying to decide on something I like, I'll throw some pics up of some various attempts. Still haven't come to a conclusion though. Gah, this is frustrating.
First pic has the rocks, and the little guy that takes up all my other time lol.





Last edited by lookin_around; 02-28-2009 at 08:53 PM.
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post #7 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-22-2009, 03:38 PM
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if you havent filled it up yet i would sujest going the 30 mins drive and getting some black sand or white sand, i like the rocks tho


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post #8 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-24-2009, 05:12 AM Thread Starter
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if you havent filled it up yet i would sujest going the 30 mins drive and getting some black sand or white sand, i like the rocks tho
Haha, got some Amazonia on the way It should be here the 27th or so
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post #9 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-24-2009, 03:13 PM
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I think you'll be happy with the Amazonia. I have it in my two 2.5s, and have been very impressed with how things grow. I have about the same amount of lighting (a Catalina 26 watt PC fixture), and am running diy co2. I have sometimes also used Excel daily to help some plants really take off (Downoi and HC in particular seem to go crazy).

Remember that the Amazonia will give off ammonia for awhile, so you won't be able to add any livestock for a number of weeks.

The red sea filter has worked fine for me, but after reading other posts, think I might try the Hagen mini.

I like your choice of rocks.
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post #10 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-27-2009, 12:37 AM Thread Starter
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Well guys, I got the Amazonia in a day early today so I went ahead and put it in. Been messing around with a hardscape and can't seem to make up my mind. I like this one the best so far but am open to suggestions. I think I may take out the smallest rock as it may just get overtaken by whatever flora I decide on.

What do you think?


Last edited by lookin_around; 02-28-2009 at 08:55 PM.
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post #11 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-27-2009, 01:08 AM
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It looks great! Keep up the work
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post #12 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-27-2009, 01:41 AM
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looking good!! keep us posted
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post #13 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-27-2009, 02:40 AM
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Quick question, two actually

1. Can u use the fiter as a filter and a co2 reactor?
2. Do you put it low on the tank or near the top?
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post #14 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-27-2009, 03:40 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by luckydud13 View Post
Quick question, two actually

1. Can u use the fiter as a filter and a co2 reactor?
2. Do you put it low on the tank or near the top?
Hey, not sure what you mean with the second question, so you'll have to clarify a little on that.

But on the first one, yes that is possible. If you look at my 29 gallon in my first post, you can see an airline going down into the tank and out of sight. This line went directly to the filter intake so that any Co2 bubbles produced got sucked up and broken up by the impeller in the filter. People seem to get mixed results with this but it worked well for me, and I plan on trying it in this tank. This time though, I will be adding some sort of air stone or wood bubbler before the intake so the bubbles are even finer, therefore (in theory) giving me a better Co2 concentration. If this doesn't work I will be tempted to purchase a glass diffuser, but have had trouble getting those to work with a DIY system. If you do have a glass diffuser then you could try placing that underneath the filter intake if you like to see how that works.
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post #15 of 192 (permalink) Old 02-27-2009, 10:14 PM Thread Starter
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Just a little update for everyone. Went to wally world a little while ago (really my only LFS, theres another small pet store but they're not really any better than wally world, just more expensive) and I ended up getting one of those PIA rolled up backgrounds, and because only the 20/29 gallon one had a black background I had to get that and cut it. That was a lot of fun, Psyche!.
Anyway, here it is


And I picked up some containers for my ferts. One for KNO3, KHPO4, and my CSM+B
[

Last edited by lookin_around; 02-28-2009 at 08:56 PM.
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