I'm Back and Ready to Go! - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 01:38 AM Thread Starter
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Talking I'm Back and Ready to Go!

OK everyone, I'm back. For those of you who know me, I was an active member during this past summer, and worked myself into some problems with people on here, and in my outside life. After taking a decent break from being active on these forums, I have decided to return. I know feel that I am more mature, and also ready to tackle totally redoing my tank.

Background - This tank was a gift to me when I was about 5 years old. It is a 29 gallon, with the regular dimensions of 30" long, 12" deep, and 18" tall. It was torn down when we moved about a year later, and then I set it up again on my 13th birthday.

Currently - Currently this tank is running under a 25w strip light that came with the tank. To be honest, it is a POS, and has never been able to grow anything. It is also filled up with guppies who, as you know, breed like none other. Before redoing this tank, the first order of business will be to sell off or cull the guppies. Hopefully I can sell them to the LFS for some credit, but if not, they will be culled (how exactly should I go about this)?

Equipment - This tank is also running on the 10+ year equipment that it first came with. Hopefully I will be able to afford some better equipment because of the fact that I will be holding down 2 jobs this upcoming summer. (I run my own business, yard work, and will find another job). The filter is totally shot, and needs to be replaced ASAP. I'm thinking either a canister filter or an Aquaclear. I had an aquaclear for a 10 gallon which was set up as a shrimp tank, but I sold all the equipment for that when I took my brief "break". The heater is a 250 or 300 watt (guessing) heater, but at 10 years old it also needs to be replaced. Finally, one of the most important aspects of a planted tank, the lights. The 25 watts over the tank now won't cut it for any plants. I don't know what wattage per gallon that I need, but I know it needs to be more than 1 :P. I will also replace the thermometer (currently a cheap floater) with a digital thermometer. Finally, a new venture for me will be extensive testing. I used to test for ammonia and pH occasionally, but I never did it on a regular basis.

Livestock - As stated above, I have tons of guppies in this tank. There are also a few miscellaneous plants in there. The only one that is making any difference is a big clump of some kind of moss which is keeping the baby guppies alive. As a side not, this isn't really livestock, but the substrate is one big bag of flourite. There is currently about 1" of it.

What I Need Help With
- What filter should I get? Canister or HOB, and what model would be good for my setup?
- What Lights should I buy? If possible, a direct link would be awesome.
- Do I need a CO2 setup? If so, how much money will this cost me?
- I'm thinking of starting out with a school of tetras, and a small school of cory cats. Both of the plecos that I have will be removed unless someone suggests otherwise.
- Finally, the question that no one likes to answer; How much should I expect to sink into this remodel? I also need to know ALL prices as my parents aren't going to pay for anything that I buy.

Many thanks, and I will be seeing everyone around

Too poor to keep any tanks up
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 01:57 AM
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As far as filter and heater recommendations, I'd choose an Eheim Classic 2215 canister with a 200 watt Hydor Eth inline heater.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 02:01 AM Thread Starter
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OK, I will look into that.

As a side not, and not in reply to the above post, please remember that I am on a budget. I won't be able to spend all my spent money on this tank, seeing as I am also saving for a car and college.

Thanks.

Too poor to keep any tanks up
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 02:36 AM
 
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classics are kinda hard for newbs to canisters arnt they? I would reccoment a new marinland such as the c220 would probabbly be great. And a stealt heater is top of the line. For lighting I would go with a 1x or 2x 55 watt AH supply. Just google AH supply
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 02:43 AM Thread Starter
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OK. Just so everyone is clear, I was VERY active on these forums. I had an entire reef setup planned out, but didn't pull the trigger because of the price. AH supply needs a hood (unless they have updated their stocks since I last checked). I don't have a hood. Building one could be a possibility, though. If anyone has any good plans or can tell me how to build it, I'm sure I could give it a whack. I also plan on sanding and staining or repainting my stand.

Too poor to keep any tanks up
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 03:18 AM
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I think you may need to ask yourself just what sort of tank you want, that'll then help give you an answer to if you'll need CO2 or not and which level of lighting to buy. So, higher light, fast growing CO2 driven or lower light, slow growing without CO2? ...which really comes down to if you want a high maintenance tank or a low maintenance tank from my point of view.

As for the recommendation of the Eheim Classic, it only hurts once when you buy the good stuff the first time around. They're not hard to operate, in fact I was recently flabbergasted at just how easy they are to operate. Financially speaking, the value is there and worth "investing" in, again, just my point of view.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 04:10 AM
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You should probably figure out what you want most, college, car or tank. Obviously, the college is a much bigger expense than a car, and a car is a much bigger expense than a tank (unless you get an old car). Make sure you have enough for the most important things first. This hobby is not cheap if you want to do it right. Even for a low tech tank.

Eheim classics are not much more expensive than other canisters. I would check craigslist and ebay for good deals on stuff.

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 04:20 AM
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If you want deals search everyday on craigslist. I just got a 4 fixture 55w PC light for 80 bucks, a 75G tank tank and stand for $50, a complete CO2 system for 90, and I've seen XP3 filters for $50.

I cannot stress enough the importance of Craigslist for those of us on a budget.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2008, 10:30 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys for that. I am currently browsing the ads. So far, no hits on lights, but lots of great tanks. To bad I didn't look here when getting a tank. If I upgrade, this will be a great place to look.

Thanks

Too poor to keep any tanks up
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