18 Gallon Setup, Complete Newb... - The Planted Tank Forum
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-17-2007, 11:55 PM Thread Starter
Guest
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4
18 Gallon Setup, Complete Newb...

I would like to setup a 18 gallon planted tank. So far my experience has only been with saltwater, the SW tank I have is a successful 46 gallon SPS reef. Now I want to start a little FW planted tank in the bedroom (has to be whisper quiet). Here is what I have now:
18g tall Tank /w stand (20"x10"x20")
50W or 75W Heater
20lbs of dry aragonite sand
Reverse UGF with Penquin175gph pump (can be run as normal UGF)
Standard 10g single NO bulb light Fixture

Nothing is setup, just stuff I have lying around. How and what do I need to do, such as substrate, lighting, filter, or anything else? I really have no clue on setup. Just tell me to throw some of items away if necessary, is any of it usable? Thanks again...
Kiel'thalin is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-17-2007, 11:59 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (266/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern California
Posts: 9,417
1) Send me your 18g tank + stand....I can't find a 18g tank for less than $50 around here. Jeebus!

Nah, all kidding aside, what kind of planted tank are you looking for? High light/high tech, or low light/low tech/lower maintenance?
epicfish is offline  
post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-18-2007, 12:39 AM Thread Starter
Guest
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by epicfish View Post
1) Send me your 18g tank + stand....I can't find a 18g tank for less than $50 around here. Jeebus!

Nah, all kidding aside, what kind of planted tank are you looking for? High light/high tech, or low light/low tech/lower maintenance?
No kidding, this tank cost me $20, and I special ordered it.
Well, I would like low maintenance, the key is a quiet setup, the RUGF is really quiet, but I am not sure if it possible to use it for a planted tank. Can I use some type Laterite or Flourite Substrate (or any recommended substrate), then cover that with the white aragonite sand? I also have two large pieces of Lava Rock (the ones with the swim hole in the middle). The light and the substrate have me confused. I can go with a full metal halide setup, or a simple t5 HO or VHO bulb layout. Thanks for the help...
Kiel'thalin is offline  
 
post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-18-2007, 01:33 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (266/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern California
Posts: 9,417
Damn...$20 special ordered? Where?! Just a chain-store LFS like PetCo/PetSmart, or a small LFS?

Low-maintenance/low tech. You won't need any special substrates...they would help, but if I'm thinking anubias, java ferns, crypts, java moss, etc...then they'll grow fine in almost anything.

Here's a long but incomplete list of things you could use as substrate. I've underlined ones I think would be suitable and cost-effective for you: Flourite, ADA AquaSoil, regular sand, Eco-Complete, Soilmaster Select...any of those would work. Aragonite would work if it doesn't affect water chemistry to a large degree.

If I were you, I'd go with a PC setup. For low-tech, I'd go with a 1x36W AHSupply retrofit kit. That bumps you close to moderate/high lighting, but I think you'll be OK. A full metal halide or VHO setup would be overkill. T5HOs will hang over the side of your tank (24" vs. 20"). If not a retrofit kit, I'd go with a 1x36W fixture from Coralife (I think they sell the 1x36w fixtures).

Do you think you'll ever upgrade to a high light/high tech tank? If so, we'll have to change your plan to accomodate for the change.
epicfish is offline  
post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-18-2007, 03:09 AM Thread Starter
Guest
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4
The tank was bought from a small LFS, I was amazed at the price when I asked. They didn't have them in stock and ordered one for me.
As far as the lighting goes, will this 20" fixture work: Current Satellite CF Fixture. Will I need to use a lower kelvin bulb, or will the 10000k be fine? After reading some articles, I think I am getting the gist of things. I just need the basic setup, no plans for anything high-tech with this tank. If I was going high tech I would take down my SW tank and use the light from it (5 bulb T5 fixture)
Will I have any problems using the lava rock? Any practical use for it, or should I get some other rock/driftwood?
Kiel'thalin is offline  
post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-18-2007, 03:30 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (266/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern California
Posts: 9,417
1x40w would move you up into moderate-high lighting...maybe. You might be able to get away with just using Flourish Excel as nutrients for your tank and to keep algae down.

There won't be problems with using lava rock.
epicfish is offline  
post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-18-2007, 12:40 PM Thread Starter
Guest
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4
That leaves the filter, running a low flow RUGF or UGF okay? Would I want to have any surface agitation? I plan on just a small school of Neon Tetras after the plants get established. Would I need to run a carbon filter of any sort, or just keep a water change regiment since this is a small tank? Thanks.
Kiel'thalin is offline  
post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-18-2007, 12:47 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (266/100%)
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern California
Posts: 9,417
I'd either get a HOB or a small canister (XP1/2, Eheim 2213/2215. You'll want minimal surface agitation...if you're going low-tech without CO2 injection, even a bit more surface agitation won't hurt since it'll help to oxygenate the water.

No carbon is needed. Just weekly to bi-weekly WCs depending on your stocking.
epicfish is offline  
post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-18-2007, 06:54 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
mrbelvedere's Avatar
 
PTrader: (51/100%)
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Saint Joseph, Illinois
Posts: 2,783
Send a message via AIM to mrbelvedere Send a message via Yahoo to mrbelvedere
Canisters (especially Eheim) are the quitest. You can't even hear any of mine unless you put your ear next to the motor housing.

Catalina Aquarium makes a 20" 36 watt fixture. I use one, I'm happy with it. Also, Catalina will give you whatever bulbs you want with your order. You don't have to spend another $20 replacing it.

10K is fine. I like the appearance.

I like to use carbon/Purigen, but it isn't necessary by any means. Lots of water changes are good in a planted tank. You could get away with very few in a low tech setup, I just like to do more.

In college....so no aquariums for a while.....
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
mrbelvedere is offline  
post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-18-2007, 07:13 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
JenThePlantGeek's Avatar
 
PTrader: (36/100%)
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Posts: 3,143
Send a message via AIM to JenThePlantGeek
Everyone has given really good advice - I'll add some reasoning to stay away from the RUGF: The roots of plants LOVE to get tangled in them. UG filters are a pain in a planted tank and best avoided. I just set up two Eheim 2026's and I had almost forgotten how much I like those filters - I can't say enough good things about Eheim.

Good luck - this is going to be a great setup!


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
- VP & Horticulture Awards Program Chair
I <3 Eheim #195
Everyone seems normal... until you get to know them.
JenThePlantGeek is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome