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120 Gal Dutchy Freestyle - Now with 35% less water volume!

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So this is a journal for my new 120, which replaces my long running 75 gallon. For anyone who followed the previous tank, this one will be basically the same style with just a bigger footprint.

First planting, about 2 months ago.




Tank

48" x 24" x 24" Marineland 120 gal


CO2

GLA Grow 1 regulator, 10 lb tank.

DIY PVC reactor. Main pipe is 3" x 24"



CO2 cuts on 90 min before the lights, goes off 1 hour before. PH drops 1.1 by lights on, proceeds on down 1.3-1.4 at peak. Livestock are fine at this level, heavy flow and good surface agitation helps.


Filtration

Two canisters: 1 Aquatop CF 500, and 1 Hydor Pro 600

Measured flow combined is about 600 gph.

1 Koralia Nano 425 for added circulation

Both canisters have SunSun intakes with the skimmer

Left corner is the the Aquatop. Using a 1" outflow pipe to reduce velocity (the in-tank flow is crazy!)



Right corner is the Hydor. The CO2 runs inline with this one.





^also you can see my LED night lights, mounted on each end of the main fixture.

Substrate:

Black Diamond blasting sand


Lighting

6 bulb T5HO hydroponic unit

https://www.amazon.com/Agrobrite-Designer-FLP46-6-Tube-Fixture/dp/B002TJQ61W



Bulbs are front to back:

TrueLumen Flora
Agrobrite 6400K
Zoo-med Flora
Plantmax 3000K
ATI Purple
TrueLumen Flora

Fixture is 9" above the tank, PAR at the sub is around 120. Having lots of red bulbs help keep it down, not to mention awesome color rendition. PAR would be a lot higher at this distance with more 6500Ks, for example


Ferts

Macros 3x week
7.5 ppm KNO3
1.3 ppm K2PO4
3 ppm K2SO4 (for 6-7 total K)

Micros 3x week
.015 Fe from csmb
.02 ppm Fe dtpa

** Micros are more now because Im rolling my own instead of using csmb. Will update the amounts once I arrive at the sweet spot.

50%-60% water change every 6-7 days

Livestock

25 Harlequin Rasboras, will soon get this up to maybe 30 or so
6-7 otos
Trio of young German Blue Rams, just coming into their adult colors
10-12 Amano shrimp


Here's the latest rendition. Plant groups are no way shaped for height or footprints. Mainly just tentative placeholders of where things are going to be. Have lots of ideas to try, and open to any suggestions! :)




Detailed plant pics to follow....
1841 - 1860 of 1924 Posts

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75g, 40g, 20g
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Congrats! The tanks are looking great as usual.

Interesting on the LED / T5 combos.

Is there any point on running the reflectors with the LED tubes? I'm a bit pressed for space and if I can get away without a reflector, those LED tubes might be a good option for me.
Somewhere above or in another thread we were discussing the reflector issue (cause I asked, lol) - reflectors not needed as the LED chips are directional. So, in your case you probably are only limited by the width of the tombstones that the bulbs plug into.
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,842 ·
Congrats! The tanks are looking great as usual.

Interesting on the LED / T5 combos.

Is there any point on running the reflectors with the LED tubes? I'm a bit pressed for space and if I can get away without a reflector, those LED tubes might be a good option for me.
Thanks man! As Linn said it doesnt look like the reflectors do anything much with the LED, you can see in the pic they're dark.
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,844 ·
After trimming and replanting, how long do you usually wait to take photos for contests? I've noticed my scape looks the best like 1-2 weeks after messing with it.
Usually as time winds down Im just giving each group whatever attention it needs. Its not really a case where most of the whole tank gets a final trim. Im trimming/adjusting something most every day those last two or three weeks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,847 ·
Still the best farm tanks I know of.

I look at them like I am window shopping.

What's the yellow/orange narrow leaf Ludwigia left center top picture? And the small red one center? Looks like a small Lotus?
Haha thanks. Thats Ludwigia brevipes, pretty cool plant, easy.




The red is a couple of baby Red Tiger Lotus, like the big one in the last dutch layout.
 

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Oh my not again.

As you know my 120 did the same thing a few years ago. It makes me wonder if I am on borrowed time.

What would you replace it with? I started searching tanks last time and it seems like they all have horror stories. And then you also have people who have them for 20 years and no problem. Is it just luck of the draw? Or are some really more prone than others? I don't know.
 

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Oh my not again.

As you know my 120 did the same thing a few years ago. It makes me wonder if I am on borrowed time.

What would you replace it with? I started searching tanks last time and it seems like they all have horror stories. And then you also have people who have them for 20 years and no problem. Is it just luck of the draw? Or are some really more prone than others? I don't know.
Maybe it won't be a bad idea to reseal your first tank. As in take it completely apart and completely redo all silicone. I would think it's definitely better to have a backup than no backup at all. When I set up my 125 I had resealed the inside seams since this tank is of unknown age.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,853 ·
😱😱😱. Thank goodness you noticed so quickly. What did you do?!?
Right!! If it'd happened a couple hours later it would've leaked all night.

Fortunately it wasnt leaking extremely fast. I hooked up the drain hose and threw some towels down on the hardwood floor. Once the water level got about halfway down it stopped leaking, less pressure I suppose. By this time it was late so I drained the water down to about 3-4 inches, covered the plants in paper towels so everything would stay wet...and went to bed.

Next morning I took all the plants out, keeping only the best growth and tossing everything else. Worked about half of them into other tanks and packed up the rest like they were getting shipped. So they'll be alright for a few days.

Going to pick up a new tank today.

Oh my not again.

As you know my 120 did the same thing a few years ago. It makes me wonder if I am on borrowed time.

What would you replace it with? I started searching tanks last time and it seems like they all have horror stories. And then you also have people who have them for 20 years and no problem. Is it just luck of the draw? Or are some really more prone than others? I don't know.
I still have the 75 from my first journal. Ive had it 20 years and it'd been a salt water tank for 5-10 years before that. Its an All-Glass which is now Aqueon I believe. AKA Petco 1$ per gallon brand iinm, lol. So not an expensive tank. I have a couple more recent ones, and two TopFins that are about on the same level.

Its just those two black siliconed Marineland's that have leaked. And both popped a bottom seam. The 120 was on its factory stand. This one in on a home made stand that is very solid. Love the black silicone but Im done with their big tanks. Also have two 20Ls that have been OK

So Im just gonna replace it with an Aqueon or TopFin, something like that. And hope for the best...
 

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Oh my not again.

As you know my 120 did the same thing a few years ago. It makes me wonder if I am on borrowed time.

What would you replace it with? I started searching tanks last time and it seems like they all have horror stories. And then you also have people who have them for 20 years and no problem. Is it just luck of the draw? Or are some really more prone than others? I don't know.
The stand construction and squareness could contribute. It may also come down to having a tank set up on a wood floor that settles/deforms over time, which translates into the stand, into the tank.

Lots of the DIY stand plans incorporate 2x4 studs, and we all know how warped they can be.

After I built my 75g stand, I spent alot of time using a sheet of paper and running it under the tank to see if/where there were high spots. I believe my 75g is an Aqueon, and it had a surprising amount of up bow in the middle prior to being filled.
 

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Hi.
I want to come back to your low level potassium experiences. Maybe you can answer me some more questions. I have in mind that you mentioned that potassium deficiency does not look like these small pinholes all over older leaves. Can you give a small summary how in your case potassium deficiency looked like? I do similar experiments and see issues like necrosis , yellowing older leaves. Bad color and twisted new leaves. Is that similar to what you saw?

greeting
Sebastian
 

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Hi.
I want to come back to your low level potassium experiences. Maybe you can answer me some more questions. I have in mind that you mentioned that potassium deficiency does not look like these small pinholes all over older leaves. Can you give a small summary how in your case potassium deficiency looked like? I do similar experiments and see issues like necrosis , yellowing older leaves. Bad color and twisted new leaves. Is that similar to what you saw?

greeting
Sebastian
I'm not Burr, but he has commented on my issues that might be low K. For me, I do have pinholes on the lowest Hygro leaves, but also virtually no growth whatsoever in Acmella Repens, Persicaria Sao Paulo, and A Reineckii regular. Hygro also grows slow compared to what it can normally do. Root tabs don't help, and the plants get very good flow with CO2. Over a dozen other plants are growing great, but these just sit there. New growth looks OK - maybe a little pale, but since they don't grow I don't top them, and lower leaves eventually deteriorate. For me, it's also been a while since I did a >50% water change, so I plan to do that plus a really good trim tomorrow. I suspect organics are keeping things from being their best as well. A recent NO3 measurement was 45 ppm, so I have been bringing that down too with no KNO3 this past week. From a distance, the tank looks pretty good, but when a few stem plants don't grow at all in a high-tech setup, something is off. A big water change, trim, and front loading macros at 20/4/25 hopefully will get things on track again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #1,860 ·
Hi.
I want to come back to your low level potassium experiences. Maybe you can answer me some more questions. I have in mind that you mentioned that potassium deficiency does not look like these small pinholes all over older leaves. Can you give a small summary how in your case potassium deficiency looked like? I do similar experiments and see issues like necrosis , yellowing older leaves. Bad color and twisted new leaves. Is that similar to what you saw?

greeting
Sebastian
Similar to what aclaar said, growth all but stopped, or became very small, colors faded. Acmella repens is a good example, lower leaves began to deteriorate but never showed any pinholes. It just turned pale with very small new leaves, and just sat there barely growing at all.

The only pinholes I ever saw during that whole year was in a couple hygro species, and by the time those pinholes showed up the tops were already small and pale. The lesson I took from all that is the textbook pinholes are not the first signs of low K to appear. It shows up in the tops and colors and growth rates before the pinholes develop
 
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