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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-28-2007, 02:19 AM Thread Starter
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Plz allow me to introduce myself?

Hello, I have been visiting this site for over a month now and I must say that you guys are by far some of the nicest and most willing to help people I have seen. Considering some of the fish only forums I am active on anyway! lol. I have been keeping fish since i was 7 and now 33yrs later I am taking the step into a planted tank. The tank i am setting up is a 175 Oceanic bowfront and although It is my smallest system in my home it is by far the most intimidating as far as set up is concerned. I have decided on an aqua medic 72" combo fixture with 250 x 3 metal halide hqi with amano bulbs along with the 4 t5 HOs also amano spec kelvin (6700). filtration is a eheim 2180 thermofilter so i do not have to place a heater in the tank, the co2 system i chose is complete aqua medic consisting of ph computer, reactor 1000 solenoid pressure regulator and bubble counter with a separate eheim hobby pump to move water. I am using eco complete substrate, I also have a r.o. system to make water if needed. My question to you guys is . Have i missed anything in my setup?. any fatal errors in equipment choices?. I am looking forward to being an active member of this forum and very pleased you having me here.
Thanks
Emanuel
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-28-2007, 02:25 AM
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Wow, for a first planted tank, that is some very nice, big expensive equipment you've got there. With that much light, you might need fertilizers. How big is your CO2 tank, and what kind of regulator do you have? It may be better/cheaper to go with a Rex Grigg setup, but I don't really know the specifics of your CO2 system (regulator, needle valve, possibly a low pressure regulator). All I can say is that I hope your reactor is very effective, because with that much light, you will be needing a lot of CO2

Nice

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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-28-2007, 02:31 AM Thread Starter
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its a 20lb co2 tank with the aquamedic regulator, the only one they offer. the reactor is rated for planted tanks of up to 500 gallons. I do plan on fertilization. that is an area that i am completely lost in as far as to what kind and how much.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-28-2007, 02:42 AM
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Welcome! Try reading here http://rexgrigg.com/ for more info on ferts. He also sells the dry ferts that lots of us use. Good luck!

Mike


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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-28-2007, 11:39 AM
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Welcome to PT Emanual,
I second the rex site for reading up on all the basics. There are also some very good articles here: https://www.plantedtank.net/articles.php
Wow, that is a lot of light. I run 384 over my 125, and in the begining I had problems with balancing.

If you are talking about the Aqua medic 1000 as your reactor, I replaced mine on my 125 since I was getting gas build ups toward the end of the day. I'm using 2 DIYs. (you can check my sig for details on my 125). I was running about 3 BPS each into 2 of them (used a manifold on the regulator). Have you researched Mazzei venturis? There have been some great posts, and something I would look into myself for future changes on my big tank.

Also, plans on substrate?

Walter

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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-28-2007, 07:21 PM
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Also, try http://www.barrreport.com

There are a lot of articles on CO2, fertilizers, and other DIY projects.

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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-28-2007, 10:54 PM
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you might want to try and go with 150w HQI lights instead.
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-29-2007, 01:24 AM
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A little off-topic, but about your screen name....lawsuit or employee?
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-29-2007, 03:30 AM
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This sounds like it will be a very nice project. The problems I can see are as follows. You may have some trouble keeping CO2 levels high enough throughout the whole tank. I would recommend having at least two entry points with CO2 enriched water. I know Aqua Medic rates their reactor (I use one myself) for 500 gallons, or whatever, but you still may have trouble keeping CO2 enriched water in areas far from the filter return. Also, you are talking about a LOT of light. While plants like a lot of light, at some point you start having other issues like algae battles, excessive pruning, extreme fert dosing, heat, evaporation, etc. Even if you somehow managed to avoid those issues (you won't), you have a lot less room for error with such high lighting. As oblongshrimp mentioned, I would definitely consider 150 watt HQI instead of 250. I hope you can post some pictures as things progress! Best of luck.


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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-29-2007, 05:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PAID BY FORD View Post
its a 20lb co2 tank with the aquamedic regulator, the only one they offer. the reactor is rated for planted tanks of up to 500 gallons. I do plan on fertilization. that is an area that i am completely lost in as far as to what kind and how much.
I agree! dry ferts is a necessity with that large set-up. I'm sure you're reading up the EI method which works and Rex Griggs can get you what you'll need. I have rex reg and it works like a charm, the ferts are easy to dose. Man, you're on your way to a lush water garden!
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-29-2007, 07:09 AM
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Wowza! You're not growing SPS man, go with 150s. Totally different school when it comes to lighting, balance is sometimes easier to achieve with moderation in the lighting. Watts per gallon doesn't apply correctly to tanks that big either, just in case you're following that, which I doubt since you over shot the sweet spot by what, 4wpg? The T5s will help spread light where the MHs won't reach, but I'd stick with 150s for sure, and probably setup separate timers for a mid day burst schedule.

But I don't have a tank that big, so what do I know anyway.


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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 03:42 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the advice guys, I listened to your suggestion about the lighting and switched the fixture to 3 150's as to bring the wattage down to your recommendations. I will be dry fertilizing and do plan on using the lighting in stages (t5's most of the day and metal halides with t5's for about 4 hrs midday. No i am not paid by lawsuit I am an employee, (engineering). lol
I am really excited about this project considering i have sadly become jaded as far as fish only aquariums. A rather Funny thing happened to me while shopping at the Big al's store locally. Another hobbyist over hears me telling a employee about the tank and asks me if it was going to be a saltwater tank, I tell him that it wasnt and i was doing a planted tank. He thens to give me a almost sympathetic look and says "oh so you are new to this hobby, dont worry once you become good at it you can start keeping saltwater". I start laughing and he asks what is so funny?. I said what makes you think I am new at this hobby?. he says well every one knows that freshwater is for beginners and that saltwater is so scientific and complicated and all. I then told him I was willing to bet him that he couldnt maintain a planted tank or get a pair of discus to thrive no less breed and that he should try to do such a beginners task. He had no clue. Unfortunately here in S. florida that is the mind set at most local fish stores. I found it rather amusing. Just wanted to share that with you guys.
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 04:32 AM
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Saltwater. Ha. Where's the fun in that? Anyway, in FL you can just go diving if you're really into saltwater. Where ya gonna find discus locally?

(About the Ford thing, I had to ask! We left Ford last year because Dearborn gets too cold, but still miss it.)
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 01:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PAID BY FORD View Post
Another hobbyist over hears me telling a employee about the tank and asks me if it was going to be a saltwater tank, I tell him that it wasnt and i was doing a planted tank. He thens to give me a almost sympathetic look and says "oh so you are new to this hobby, dont worry once you become good at it you can start keeping saltwater". I start laughing and he asks what is so funny?. I said what makes you think I am new at this hobby?. he says well every one knows that freshwater is for beginners and that saltwater is so scientific and complicated and all. I then told him I was willing to bet him that he couldnt maintain a planted tank or get a pair of discus to thrive no less breed and that he should try to do such a beginners task. He had no clue.
LOL, great points Emanuel.
I'm looking forward to some pics on this. That 175 bowfront is an attractive tank.
Talk about starting big.

Walter

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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 04:50 PM
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Bwhahaha! Some of the most clueless folks I know are doing SW. They don't realize how self sufficient those systems can be, weekly water changes and tons of money are about the only factors needed for success. I got bored with it fast. I don't even test them anymore, what's the point when the parameters hold themselves, lots of science there but not all of it is in our hands.


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