The Planted Tank Forum banner
1 - 20 of 58 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
922 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
About a month ago I got the idea to have a tank in my office. I started looking around and wasn't happy with any of the small cube kits. The prices were too high and they always had something that I didn't like.. The lighting was bogus, the filter was crap.. something.

After a week or so getting no where with off the shelf ideas I thought that for a tank this small it should be fairly easy and inexpensive for build it my self. I hadn't built from scratch before, but I had resealed plenty of tanks.

I contacted a local glass shop and was able to purchase all the pieces for about $25 (this included a piece for a glass top) I had the sealant already, so I didn't need to buy any.

build 2.jpg

build1.jpg

Once the edges were sealed and cured for a few days it was time to test. It sat on the back deck full of water for 3 days. I made a point of putting it in the path of the dogs and humans on the deck so that any vibrations from walking might bust any weak seams.

View attachment 164369

Once I was confident I wasn't going to bust a seam I set about scaping. I used Black Diamond Blasting Media for substrate. Last time I boulght a bag I got 20/40, this time I grabbed 30/60. It's a much finer substrate and reminds me a lot of beach sand. I'm not sure how I like it, but I think it looks good so far.

I sloped my substrate and added a piece of driftwood I picked up from Unique Aquarias moving sale. I planted the tank with plants I received in this RAOK by kingjombeejoe: http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/showthread.php?t=361193

Current Plant List:
Hygrophila lacustris
Alternanthera reineckii
Eichhornia diversifolia
Ludwigia repens
Rotala rotundifolia
Hydrocotyle leucocephala

and some willow moss. One bunch that stayed tied to the wood during the move and another that started floating.

View attachment 164337

Added the light.

lit.jpg

This morning I drained the water, loaded the tank in the hatch of my tiny car, and carted the whole thing into work. I set it up on a heavy duty filing cabinet and found to my surprise that it was level.

in the office.jpg

I tested the water from the tap kH 3, gH 4-5 but we also have RO available in the office.. I'm thinking this might become a nice little shrimp haven. I forgot to test pH, but I'll do it when I refill my coffee.

I plan on bringing the glass top piece back to the glass shop to have them cut it down so it fits with the filter. And I'll bring in a bottle for DIY co2 in the next few days to get that up and running.

It's been set up for a little over 2 hrs and one of my co-workers has already asked if we could build another for her work area.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
922 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The job can be pretty high stress, having this thing around means I can take a break and watch shrimp or plant/trim.

I want ur job
Thanks for the compliments all! I'm really excited to see this tank fill in. These are all new plants for me, so planning a scape with future growth in mind was damn near impossible for me.

I'm actually up in the air on co2. Not sure if I want to setup diy at the office, splurge on a paintball setup, or dose. I think dosing would be easiest..

This thing was pretty easy to put together, and at <$50 for tank, filter, light I could see my self doing another one of these. Heck I might even copy the pros next time and etch 0live into the lower right hand corner of the glass.

It might not beat 5gal PetCo tanks price wise, but I'll take it over one any day.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,901 Posts
Very nice!!!

May I ask which shop cut/sold you the glass?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,602 Posts
The bubbles have receded and it's looking quite nice now. I need to find Ammonia to do a fishless cycle. For the record, Stop and Shop brand has a surfactant.

View attachment 165241
I got 10% ammonia from Ace Hardware. 3 drops put my 3 gallon (really about 2.5 gallon) at roughly 2-3ppm ammonia for reference. So roughly 1 drop per gallon of water gives a 1ppm ammonia increase. The exact same ratio worked on my 12 gallon at home.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
922 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I got 10% ammonia from Ace Hardware. 3 drops put my 3 gallon (really about 2.5 gallon) at roughly 2-3ppm ammonia for reference. So roughly 1 drop per gallon of water gives a 1ppm ammonia increase. The exact same ratio worked on my 12 gallon at home.
Yeah, I've read that the ACE brand is the recommended brand.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
922 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I brought in the seeded filter this morning and took the filter intake cover sponge from my 20 gal (which was in desperate need of a rinsing) and rinsed it in a tupperware container of tank water which I've added to the 7 gal as well. Things are a little cloudy right now, but I imagine it'll clear up in the next 2 hrs.

seeded.jpg

Also, here's a shot the driftwood and some plants.

plants.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
922 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
Its looking good. The color of your plants looks awesome. Great healthy color
Thanks, though kingjombeejoe deserves the credit for the plants. They've been in my tank for a week, I don't think I'm responsible for them looking good quite yet. Maybe if they still look good in a month...

There are some stems that were bent during transport that are dying and need to be removed and a few leaves that need to be removed as well. I'll spend a little bit of time before I head home to take care of that and then the tank will be on it's own for the weekend.

I have noticed some new growth on the Nymphoides sp. ''Taiwan'', so at least I know something's happy.

View attachment 166225
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
922 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Is that the finer black diamond? I use the 20/40
Yep. This is the 30/60. I've got the 20/40 in my 20gal and it's hard to say which I like more. This stuff was a P.I.T.A to rinse (I still have silt in my driveway from rinsing,) but is a nice almost beach sand fine grain.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
416 Posts
Thanks, though kingjombeejoe deserves the credit for the plants. They've been in my tank for a week, I don't think I'm responsible for them looking good quite yet. Maybe if they still look good in a month...

There are some stems that were bent during transport that are dying and need to be removed and a few leaves that need to be removed as well. I'll spend a little bit of time before I head home to take care of that and then the tank will be on it's own for the weekend.

I have noticed some new growth on the Nymphoides sp. ''Taiwan'', so at least I know something's happy.

View attachment 166225
I've seen plants go from ashy to classy or the exact opposite in as little as a day or two, so you deserve some credit. I think the fact we are in the same part of the country, using the same substrate and lighting may have also helped them adapt quicker. Sorry to hear about the damaged plants, I'm still new to shipping. Any info on what I could do differently next time to prevent damage would be a big help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
922 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I've seen plants go from ashy to classy or the exact opposite in as little as a day or two, so you deserve some credit. I think the fact we are in the same part of the country, using the same substrate and lighting may have also helped them adapt quicker. Sorry to hear about the damaged plants, I'm still new to shipping. Any info on what I could do differently next time to prevent damage would be a big help.
The damage was not actually from shipping, it was from the move from my kitchen to my office.. Your shipping was great!
 
1 - 20 of 58 Posts
Top