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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2010, 12:31 AM Thread Starter
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First Medium Tech Planted Tank

I was wondering if I could get some help with my tank. It is a 120 gallon that is 5 feet long. For lighting I have two 30" lights that run two 18w full spectrum bulbs and two atinics(for color of fish) and two 48"lights with 54w 6400k bulbls, all lights are T5s. I have a Fluval FX5 filter. Two 300w heaters. Substrate is Shultzs aqua soil and a layer of gravel on top. I have a CO2 system coming that has a milwakie regulator with nedle valve and silanoid and a glass difuser. I am hoping to have a carpet of dwarf hair grass and some other plants, maybe some crypts. Just wondering if I could get any sugestions on the setup. Is that equipment good or is there some thing that I should change. I am kinda new to the planted tank thing, I have had a few tanks with java fern and java moss, but Like the look of the planted tanks. Any help? Thanks.
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2010, 12:48 AM
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It sounds like you have a pretty good set up planned out. It's too bad there isn't a 5' t5ho light. You should be able to get all those lights arranged in such a way to provide good coverage though.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2010, 12:58 AM Thread Starter
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yes I have the two 30" lights beside each other, so that makes it 60". And then the two 4 foot lights are staggered so that there is a 3 foot overlap.
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2010, 12:40 PM
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Your setup sounds pretty good to me.

Do you have your plants picked out?

Are there fish already in the tank?





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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2010, 01:29 PM
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Can you expand on how many watts of light in total you are using.

As for actinic lighting, opinions range from somewhat useful to detrimental as far as use in freshwater planted aquaria. Theoretically, depending on the bulb, actinics produce light in the 420nm spectrum, which is a spectrum that plants can use in photosynthesis, but these bulbs have a low PAR value and empirical evidence suggests that they can contribute to excessive algae growth. Unless you really like the look, I would suggest using other bulbs.


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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2010, 01:37 PM
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It sounds to me like the 2x54 watt 6400k T5HOs should be sufficient for plant growth, and the other T5s (T5NOs?) are there just for viewing/aesthetics.





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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-18-2010, 01:47 PM
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2x54 watts over 120 gallons is relatively low light (nothing wrong with that), but I just want to make sure I understand the lighting scheme. If that is the case, then plant selection will be more limited. The OP mentioned crypts, and they do make good low light plants. Additionally, with lower light, Co2 becomes less useful as you don't have the light to really "drive" the plants and the carbon requirements are modest, as are the fertilizer requirements.


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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-19-2010, 12:43 AM Thread Starter
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So that would be 190watts total If I were to have it all with 6500k. I would like to keep dwarf hairgrass in there. No there are no fish in there yet. The filter is cycled and I am waiting for the substrate to settle and then I will clean the filter and add a few fish in there. The 4' lights are HO lights. As for the other two I dont quite know. I can get rid of the atinic lights. I am planning on putting some wild long nose angels some cradinal tetras in there. Along with the clean team, ottos, bushy nose plecs and maybe some trumpet snails. So are they any sugestions on plants? For now I have a Crypt, bacopa and anubia, and planning on getting dwarf hairgrass. Thanks.
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-19-2010, 04:32 AM
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Anubias and crypts both do well with low light or better. While I don't personally keep the others, I understand bacopa has relatively low light requirements, and dwarf hairgrass has average lighting requirements. With 1.6 watts per gallon I would expect good results for all your listed species, although more light would likely be better for the hairgrass.


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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 09-19-2010, 04:15 AM Thread Starter
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Well change of setup. I bought a 80 gallon tank that is 4 feet long 16 inches wide and 2 feet high. I bought a 4 foot T5HO light in that I am running 2 6400k and a 12000k bulbs. Other than that everything is the same. Here are some pictures. I am dealing with some hair algae problems. Bought some mollies to try to get rid of some of it. Well with out further ado here are some pics.




Let me know what you guys think. Thanks
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 09-19-2010, 12:06 PM
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I am a newbie at planted tanks so keep that in mind. That is a lot of light!! I would'nt be suprised if have algae problems unless you use large amounts of co2 and dosing. You will need much more plants to help combat the algae.

Also I am not a fan of the lava rock caves.
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 09-19-2010, 01:37 PM
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Do you have your CO2 setup yet? That's too much light without it.





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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 09-19-2010, 02:13 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah I have CO2 all setup and pumping it out. Not dosing yet till the plants take off a bit more. So is that alot of lighting? I can cut the one 12000k bulb out.
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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 09-19-2010, 02:23 PM
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Why are you waiting to add the CO2 if you want your plants to grow? That doesn't make sense... that's like waiting for your fish to grow before you'll start feeding them LOL





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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 09-19-2010, 05:44 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lauraleellbp View Post
Why are you waiting to add the CO2 if you want your plants to grow? That doesn't make sense... that's like waiting for your fish to grow before you'll start feeding them LOL

Well I think that CO2 helps the plants grow, Does it not? Maybe a little confused on that one.
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