8' long 160 gallon recomendations!!! - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-14-2011, 07:09 AM Thread Starter
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8' long 160 gallon recomendations!!!

Alright so i have set up a 160 gallon tank. Unfortunately, it had holes predrilled on the bottom, so i had to have it set up for a sump.

you cant really tell but theres an overflow pipe on the left hand side and the return is on the right. Anyway, am i starting off on the wrong foot already? has anyone used a planted tank with a sump filter?
Another thing is i have a play sand substrate and am wondering what plants i can grow in play sand. I have a pressurized co2 system and am dosing npk through the water column. let me know what you guys think i should do or any recomendations on what i can grow.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-14-2011, 10:18 AM
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There are a handful of folks out there with sump so that's not really a problem. As far as play sand goes if you ever decide to plant more heavily then I reccommended you get a more nutrient rich substrate or atleast add some root tabs near your plants.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-14-2011, 01:04 PM
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where do you have the CO2 entering into the system? The CO2 loss can be minimized if you reduce splashing etc. Sealing the top of the sump would really do wonders as well.

The play sand is fine, you will be able to grow any plants you want, but just make sure you add some root tabs, either diy osmocote+ capsules or commercially available tabs like rootmedic.

The tank looks great by the way. Nice and clean.


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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-14-2011, 01:27 PM
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Welcome to the site.

You are off to a good start. We can really grow plants in just about any container, with any type of filtration (or no filtration) and any level of light.

It's just some combinations make life a little easier for the plants and us.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-14-2011, 06:28 PM
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I have a 29g sump on my 125g. No reason you couldn't use a sump. I like the sump to hide all the equipment as well as constant water level and more water volume.
I also have sand however mine is pool filter sand but it sits on top of minerlized top soil.

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-14-2011, 07:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by calebjimz View Post
Alright so i have set up a 160 gallon tank. Unfortunately, it had holes predrilled on the bottom, so i had to have it set up for a sump.

you cant really tell but theres an overflow pipe on the left hand side and the return is on the right. Anyway, am i starting off on the wrong foot already? has anyone used a planted tank with a sump filter?
Another thing is i have a play sand substrate and am wondering what plants i can grow in play sand. I have a pressurized co2 system and am dosing npk through the water column. let me know what you guys think i should do or any recomendations on what i can grow.
It may alos help a GREAT deal to join your local pklant club, SCAPE. There are many members(100's) and some have sumps and can help you out in person, which for these types of things, can make a huge different.

You can see the 120 Gallon ADA like Ditches, Dutch like color etc in my tank journal as far as what to do to a sump/overflow.



the dry section where the water splashes in, it sealed with duct tape, this prevents the degassed CO2 from escaping, with nowhere else to go, it simply dissolves back into the water and enters the open portion of the sump........here.........there's little turbulence like the tank itself, so there's very little CO2 loss.

It's only where the water crashed down and the surface breaks, aeration occurs etc.........that's what and where the control points are for loss. If they are sealed up, then no CO2 will be lost, but,.....you still have O2 entering and they maintain O2 levels better than canister filters and remove CO2 at night faster when you do not want CO2 enrichment.




Regards,
Tom Barr
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-14-2011, 09:53 PM
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A sump was not a must.

You could have plugged the holes and went a different route for filtration.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-15-2011, 12:14 AM
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+1 sump not a must
you could run a canister filter(s) from the drilled holes also
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-15-2011, 01:49 AM Thread Starter
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thanks everyone for the replies! looks like i will be sealing my sump tank to minimize co2 loss. and it sounds like root tabs will be the way to go. I purchased the regular osmocote, not +. is that gonna be a problem? the store didnt have plus unfortunately.

Also what plants could i be growing, I REALLY want to have a carpet of some kind in the foreground. has anyone ever done this with sand?

if worse comes to worse, i can just siphon out all the sand and re-do the substrate. I was planning on making some modifications to the plumbing anyway(specifically, modify the overflow pipe so that it doesnt just skim the surface and actually gets particles floating in the water column. I would do this by adding a bigger tube around the main downflow tube that will have holes drilled in it at the bottom and middle so that water gets sucked through there instead of just at the top) so at the same time i do that i can just replace the substrate.

ANOTHER question i have now is if I eventually am gonna drain the tank anyway, should i just go ahead and ditch the sump setup and go with a canister filter? lots of questions here haha my bad.

ill post a pic of the updated tank tonight, looks much better than this picture cause this was taken the first day it was up. its been running for about 2 months now.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-15-2011, 03:44 AM
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I wouldn't remove a working sump system in favor of a canister. You already have all your plumbing out of site, why hang hoses, inlets/outputs on your tank? No canister is going to give you anything in terms of filtration, relocation of the heater, extra water and ease of cleaning that you don't already have now.

Your money & time would be better directed at the substrate if you goal is a well planted tank.

Last edited by DogFish; 11-15-2011 at 04:12 PM.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-15-2011, 02:08 PM
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I agree with dogfish, you already have a working sump, why spend money to replace something thats not broken?

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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-16-2011, 12:42 AM Thread Starter
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awesome then, that parts settled, no canister filter. alright so then a change of substrate it is! since i already have playsand, i was thinking about going with the whole mgops with a play sand cap, but i head theres a lot of controversy about the whole play sand compacting too much yada yada. Basically, i need advice on what substrate to use. keep in mind, i need to cover a 8' x 17" x 3-4" section for the bottom of my tank( the 3-4" is the height because i want my plumbing to be hidden from view of the tank and the plumbing parts come up pretty high off the bottom of the tank) so $30 bags of substrate isnt going to be nice to me price wise haha. let me know what you guys would recommend doing for something this size.

as promised, here are some pics of the tank right now.


and heres kinda how the plumbing on the inside of the tank looks like with the return at the top left and the overflow on the top right

and here is my sump and refugium set up.

ive been having problems with algae, so thats why i set up a refugium down there to help combat that. but thats a problem for another day i guess. also serves as a quarantine tank. hope you guys like it! any comments, suggestions, criticisms are much appreciated.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-16-2011, 01:26 AM
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I would look for acrylic pipe to replace the stand pipes(intake and return) or plant them black. That would help them disappear a bit.

Go read all the threads about "Dirt", M.G.P.S, MTS etc. A 3/4-1" sand cap is used by many here without issue. I do feel adding MTS (snails) is a good idea. They tunnel in the substrate but don't up root plants. The do not eat live healthy plants.

It wouldn't be a bad idea to look at looks of pic of well scaled tanks and work backwards from a goal. The ADA contest winners on Youtube is a good start. But, just a start, there are other styles and the best is what you like. You are the one that lives with it.

The simpler you keep everything in this hobby the more you will enjoy it.

Think through the pros & cons. For example C02 & Hight light grows some pretty cool plants fast. I personally don't want top be trimming stemmed plants every other day. So, low light, low tech is better for me and certainly not better for other folks.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-16-2011, 02:49 AM
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Your tank looks great! Do join and attend SCAPE meetings, great bunch of people with amazing knowledge and the stuff auctioned at meetings is amazing. http://www.scapeclub.org/forum/

I have an 8' tank and wish it was drilled! The U tube gets gunky and bubbles can form that reduce the efficiency of the siphon which can cause a lot of grief. And if drilled I could use a herbie or beananimal overflow to reduce noise and turbulence in the sump. My intake is on the right and output is on the left and I think the flow is okay as I can see leaves moving near the intake. I have been using a sump for 11 years now. Finally I have a 40 gallon breeder after 11 years with a 14 gallon rubbermaid tub. Sure I may be wasting CO2 as my sump isn't well sealed but it is great having the heater, pumps, CO2 reactor and even the thermometer in the sump rather than in the tank and the surface skimming and constant water level is a great thing.

Never used sand but Schultz's Aquatic Soil plus gravel wasn't expensive and SAS is lightweight which sure was nice when was new and I had to rinse and rinse it. It has been in use for a decade and is full of mulm. Turface is cheaper but finding it was beyond me when I needed more substrate for the big tank. If you like the color it is as good as Eco Complete or Flourite but not as good as the expensive soil based ADA substrates. It was hard to plant at first, partly because I hadn't any tweezers or forceps to plant with and partly because it is lightweight and buoyant plants can float up unless you really plant deep. I am still too chicken to try a soil substrate, maybe sometime in the next decade.

I painted the pipes in the tank to minimize their appearance but beige as the wall behind is beige. If I used a black background then black would help disguise them. Really algal and plant growth will lessen their obviousness in time anyway. Clear pipes would look great clean but unless you can clean them they won't be clear for long.

If you are feeding the plants and have CO2 available you might look at the amount of light going into the tank. My metal halides are suspended 16" over the water, about 38" over the substrate and are only on for 6 hours a day [each, I have them staggered so one light or another is on for 9 hours total]. And that is over the cloudy acrylic that tops the tank!


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