Thinking about a 100g high-tech tank. Looking for advice - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-22-2012, 01:14 AM Thread Starter
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Thinking about a 100g high-tech tank. Looking for advice

I'm thinking about getting back into the aquarium hobby with a 100g high-tech planted tank (I've been out of the hobby for about 8 years. I've previously had African Cichlids, FOWLR, a small reef tank, and a small low tech planted tank.)

The 100g aquarium that I'm looking at is 60"x18"x18" (its actually 94 gallons). Is that going to be a good size? (Is 18" high tall enough for a tank this wide? Should I go taller?) I was originally thinking about a 75 gallon, but I think the 60" wide 100g will fit my space better.

It seems like 60" is an unusual size for lighting fixtures, which kind of limits my options. It looks like they make 60" 80W T5s. I'm thinking about 4 of those for 3.2 wpg.

The guy at the aquarium store suggested that I run with an open top, because a glass lid will block light (especially as moisture builds up on it). Any thoughts about that?

I wanted to avoid the complexity, but it looks like I'll need to have pressurized CO2 to get the kind of results I want.

I'm thinking about using a sump instead of a canister filter. I really like the idea of having a constant water level in the display tank. I would probably have an auto-top off unit to keep the sump full. Any thoughts about that?

I'm just trying to get my head straight right now. I'm still not even sure exactly what size tank I want to buy.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-22-2012, 02:18 AM
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60x18x18" sounds good to me. My 110 was 60x18x23" tall and I moaned and groaned about the lack of depth. Probably if the tank was shallower it would have seemed in better proportion to me. Draw a picture of how the tank and stand will look on the wall. Decide what sort of scape and plants interest you most at the moment. Might help you decide what way to go.

Forget watts per gallon. It is more like tubes over depth of tank these days and how many you need to cover the substrate evenly. See Hoppy's sticky in the lighting forum. 2 tubes is all you really need but it would be better if they were evenly spaced over the tank which of course means a 4 bulb fixture running only 2 bulbs is likely your best choice!

I have been running a sump under my 150>100>180 gallon tank for over a decade and haven't given up yet. With my open top 100 gallon tank it turned out a 14 gallon tub that is full to the brim when the pump is off [insuring that a power outage won't cause a flood!] will last for about a week before the sump pump starts sucking air and annoying the heck out of me until I either dump more water in [poor choice] or do a water change [better choice]. A real sump or modified aquarium tank holds more water in a smaller footprint but I couldn't find one that worked in the spot.

I am firmly in the camp of fast growth with lots of fertilizer, light and CO2 but have you checked out the low tech forum? Those patient people can grow anything I can and probably with less algae, it just takes a little longer is all.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-22-2012, 02:56 AM
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I'd do 60x18x24, but that's because many of my 'scapes are space hogging jungles. I prefer to do non-stem setups with high-tech tanks because the stems are such a pain to keep healthy in the long run. They certainly are beautiful, though.

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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-22-2012, 06:04 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys.

I've been reading about sumps in planted tanks and it seems like it makes sense, so I'm gonna do the sump for sure. I think I'll do a Herbie style overflow to minimize CO2 loss.

The fact that I am getting set on a sump is making me wonder if I should get a reef-ready tank. Going to see what my LFS has. This also gives me more options for used tanks on Craigslist since most of the larger tanks are reef-ready.

I've been measure the space and I'm getting pretty set on the 60" wide tank. I'm going to head down to my LFS to see if they can order any taller tanks with the same footprint.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-22-2012, 10:57 PM Thread Starter
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My LFS can get a me a 110g 60"x18"x24" tank, which I think looks good.

I also found a 150g 60"x24"24" with nice stand/canopy on Craigslist for $500. Its a great tank, but I wonder if its too big. Its only 6" deeper than the tank I'm looking at already, but its twice as big as what I originally started looking at (a 75 gallon)! (For what its worth it was original a reef tank, so it already has overflows. It also has Starfire glass on the front panel.)

What do you guys think? Too much tank?
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-23-2012, 02:54 PM
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I much prefer a tank that is 24" wide. It's only 6" more, but it makes a huge difference in aquascaping options and looks better.

Also, a 24" tall tank is better if you wish to grow some of the larger plant species, e.g., Amazons, Apons, etc.

My tank is 84" x 24" x 24", so there is no such thing as "too much tank"!
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-23-2012, 03:01 PM
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The 150 is the way to go if you can still get it. The extra depth gives you so many more scaping options.

And I agree, there's no such thing as too much tank.

But at my LFS they said...
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