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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
From first set up of what I have,until the tank is all set up. Including the test/prestage/growing of the plants in a 10 gallon...

I found someone giving away what they called a 75 gallon (it was a 125H gallon in reality), and want to set it up as a freshwater with live plants. I don't have any money really so this is going to be a long work in progress... The 125H came with a fluval fx5, and I have added a 300w heater and (temporarily) an air pump, and some gold fish (also temporarily). I still need glass tops, a light, plants, and fish.

Picture of the tank on last steps of seal testing:


Found a 10 gallon, I have Dirted it and topped that with gravel from an I am not sure where (see first picture of 10 gallon). Thanks to help from @Sarlindescent I now have added plants and an assassin snail to the 10 gallon. I stopped into a Petco to see about some dried shrimp or something incase there were no snails in the plants. They said that they had an apple snail infestation and just gave me snails (I only took 10 this time as I don't want to have them take over) and said that they would give me more in a week or two too if I need. (If you live in Maryland and want apple snails go to the Petco in Croften) I will post a pic of the plants in and snails in the bags acclimatizing. Lastly I am adding some gold fish (a picture of that will be posted as well). I will post an update later how the plants and such are doing.

Tank has been dirted, and has had many water changes. Next step is plants!


Plants are all in! Just letting the snails all acclimatize before releasing them!


All plants, snails, and fish have been added. Just waiting for everything to settle, I may take another pic tomorrow after the tank has a chance to sit...
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Started making a DIY Co2, I need a couple more bottles but have a 1 gallon bottle with the sugar and yeast. Which reminds me, will brewers yeast work? I guess I will have my answer here soon... I plan on posting pics weekly so stay tuned, and if anyone sees something that might help please let me know.

Assassin Snail is cruzing around checking out its new home!


Brave Snail is cruising around on the frogbit!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
If i may ask, how much did you get the 125 with the filter for?
Actually I got them both for free, I saw a post about someone getting rid of their tanks and jumped on it. And now I am itching to get plants and fish in.... But finances are making me go really slow (which might have helped some since almost all of my original plans have been changed or tweaked now.
 

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Actually I got them both for free, I saw a post about someone getting rid of their tanks and jumped on it. And now I am itching to get plants and fish in.... But finances are making me go really slow (which might have helped some since almost all of my original plans have been changed or tweaked now.
\
You got SOOOO lucky, i wish i could have that stuff but i dont have any funds :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
\
You got SOOOO lucky, i wish i could have that stuff but i dont have any funds :D
Yes I feel lucky!:cool:
Just cant wait to get the funds to be able to finish setting it up, partly why I started this Journal.:|
I still need glass tops, a light, the gravel/substrate, the hardscape, plants, and fish... The plants I hope to start cutlivating in my 10 and 15 gallon tanks, hence the above pictures/posts.
 

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Yes I feel lucky!:cool:
Just cant wait to get the funds to be able to finish setting it up, partly why I started this Journal.:|
I still need glass tops, a light, the gravel/substrate, the hardscape, plants, and fish... The plants I hope to start cutlivating in my 10 and 15 gallon tanks, hence the above pictures/posts.
I personally went lidless because i was on a budget
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
So I made a couple of discoveries last night.

First that gold fish were the absolute wrong fish to put in my newly planted 10G tank... They were ripping out the plants and eating the roots. Luckily I learned this before they killed plants... now to figure out what cheap fish to get to throw in to help.

Second, snails can move across the top of the water (on the underside) even if there is nothing there for them to grab onto. The slime that is on thier "foot" allows them to use the surface tention to stay up. I noticed this as I was watching a snail move from one frogbit plant to the other.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I noticed some algae starting to build up on some of the taller plants on Monday, so yesterday (Tuesday) I went to LFS with the intesions of getting an algae eater (shrimp or SAE) and saw a really cool catfish! It was a Banjo Catfish, never seen one before and he was only $3.49. So in addition to 2 SAE, I got a Banjo!!!

On another note I was looking around at the plants and I think I see a snail egg sack or 2... not sure if I should let this bunch hatch or pull them out? I don't really want snails (hence the assassin) and if I really want/need more I am sure I can get more free from Petco (they have an infestation right now).

In addition to the snail eggs I noticed that many of the plants have a nice bit of new growth! I will be taking pics right now and on Saturday. I will post some on Saturday before I have to trimm (yes there are some that will need trimmed already! So happy I didn't just kill them all... (though it is still early yet)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
So after a rather busy weekend I was able to take some pictures last night and get them loaded to the site. I was planning on trimming some of the plants as they are very close to the top but decided to wait since everything has only been in the tank for a little over a week (plus I want to get some scissors to use so that I don't pull up any plants accidentally).

On another note, I was walking through some woods near my house and found a tree graveyard... got some cool wood, took them home preasure washed it to get the dirt/rotten/softer wood and such off of them. Wife thinks I am crazy and got some crazy looks from neighbors too!!! (I love confuseing people) I plan on soaking them for a few weeks after I put them through the dishwasher and oven (though one piece may not fit in either so I am going to have to think of something else for that one if I want to use it), and use a hard brush on them. I will try to get some pictures of them tonight.

Now for the pictures (if you see anything that might help please speak up! and if you could help me to identify some of these plants that would be awesome too):

After 1 Week everything is looking alright. There is still some algae, and some of the grass plants have not really changed. But it is still early!


Bubbles that start at the base of the Amazon Sword and travel up the leaf. Not sure if it is O2 or CO2? But I have noticed a few plants that have bubbles that either come from the base or from where the plant was cut.


This is my Temp CO2 and I think an Onion plant. Not sure what the Red plant is called yet but I am going to get them all identified here sometime!


This is a nice close up of my Assassin Snail. Can algae grow on them?


The growth on some of these is just crazy for it only being a week. IMO that is...


Some Star Grass I believe it is and an SAE chilling on the Amazon Sword leaf!


This here is a mystery plant to me? I got it with the bundle I got from Sarlindescent so I will have to ask, as I have no clue.


Pygmy Chain Sword with algae. These have not grown much, but they are still alive!!!


Hope you are enjoying because I know I am having a blast!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
So I started soaking the wood last night, I am then going to try putting it in the oven in a day or 2. If it doesn't fit in the oven does anyone have any ideas about how I could finish cleaning it up? I have already pressure washed the wood.

I will see about getting some pictures of the wood to show off sometime soon.

Here is a bad picture of how I am thinking of putting the wood into the tank:
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
So my assassin snail died, I am not sure why unless he ate a bad snail, or maybe didn't eat enough (someone on a forum here said they don't like apple snails and that is what I had for it. Though I do know that he ate a couple) I am saddened by this and will be getting a new one at some point, now I may have to deal with an apple snail take over some day here soon too...
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
After looking at what I have been posting I have come to realise that I like to begin my posts with the word "so" a lot. Ya that will be changing I think...

Last Wensday (14 October 2015) I had to do a trimming as everything is just growing like crazy! Here are some before and after pictures:

Week and a half and the first trim is needed! Three plants are either touching the surface or have already pushed above the surface.


Trimmed, Water Changed, and Cleaned! Also arranged the New Drift wood!


Moss found near Gypsy Sword has been tied to the drift wood.


While cleaning I noticed what I thought was aa possible parasite. Asked the LFS (H.O.T.) about it. Here is a picture:

Worm found swimming near the surface of the water, looked to be trying to get out. LFS says it is a larva.


I was also able to get some rocks gathered, cleaned, and have put them into the 125. There is also the "driftwood" that I will be using for the 15 Gallon in there right now too. I am thinking of getting some flame moss to put on it while it is in there. Here is a picture:

Rocks and Extra plants added with the driftwood that is going to go into my 15G.


Bump:

Bump:
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The wood that I found on my walk through a wooded area near me has been soaked, preasure washed, brushed, and one piece was thrown in the oven for about 5 hrs (the other is to large to be able to fit...). I have added both to my tank (one at a time over a few days time) to see how the feeder gold fish act/react and to be able to test the water too. I also hope that they both sink at some time otherwise I may be forced to get creative.

125G Wood has been added. Now to hope it becomes water logged, otherwise I will need more rocks!
 

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I highly suggest going to a home improvement store and getting a couple small porcelain tiles and placing them on the driftwood to make it sink. It should help it water log since it will be submerged. Maybe it doesn't matter, but my imagination says it should.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I highly suggest going to a home improvement store and getting a couple small porcelain tiles and placing them on the driftwood to make it sink. It should help it water log since it will be submerged. Maybe it doesn't matter, but my imagination says it should.
That is a good idea! I was moving them a around a little tonight to see of any more bubbles would come out and was able to use the rocks and the driftwood that is already water logged to keep the one that was in the most to sit on the bottom. For the one that was still half way out I moved it to the center so that the center bar is holding in completely under. I hope that this helps them become water logged sooner...
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Sad news for my 10G, wife had me tear it down so that the tank could be used for a hampster. Our cat decided to knock down the old plastic cage so he could play with the hampster. So I ended up rushing setting up my 15G tank! Dirted and capped with sand. I moved some water from the 10G to the 15G, set up my driftwood and rocks. Transplanted the plants and then moved the fish over. Took the rest of the water out of the 10G and then used water from the 55G to top it off. Added some Stress Coat hoping it would help.

Pictures:

10G taken over by Kids


All plants and Fish have been moved over from the 10G. There is a layer of dirt under the sand and I had a a piece of driftwood selected for this tank. This was set up in a rush so I am praying that everything settles ok.


15G Banjo Catfish


15G Banjo not helping, he buried himself and dug up plants at the same time!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Got a hold of 70ish lbs of flourite substrate this weekend off of craigslist. Commence the massive drain/setting up and arranging of the 125!!! I drained 75% ish of the water into some tubs and a large 50 gallon can. messed around with arranging the wood a little while it was sitting on the bottom of the tank and had a rough idea of how I wanted it set. Put in the sub, and started adding the water back into the tank. Found more large rocks to use in the tank, and was able to use them to hold the wood down. I am now waiting for the column to clear some more, and I will need to adjust some of the sub as it was moved while placing the wood.

Check out some pictures:

Added Substrate, Set the Wood under some Rocks in what should be how it will ultimately stay as (I think for now but we will see).


Wood set Under Rocks till it is water logged. Hope this happens sooner than later.


Log Closeup


Looking Down into the Wood


The plants are still free floating for now, I will be removing the gold fish in a week or so and so starts the grueling task of growing/planting this beast. I Can't Wait!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I hope to me able to get the wood to make the frame for my canopy, and the first of the light fixtures. Once I have the light and frame I will feel comfortable putting some more plants into the 125. Until then I have put some gravel into a bowl and taken most of the plants that were just floating around (mostly anacharis but some hornwort) and stuck them in to help them get roots and straighten out. They have both been growing happy in the tank just floating but I don't want that once I start planting other plants. Once the water has cleared some and I can get a decent light I will get another picture to post.

I have been thinking of moving the 15G to its own journal, what says the forum? I originally started having the smaller tanks with this one because they are helping grow the plants for the 125. But they could definatly have their own with what I have done, and to show their progress...

Let me know what you all think.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
After almost a week with the substrate and wood being held down with rocks the water has cleared nicely. I got some Vals from @secuono and they were to tall for the 15G, so they are in the 125. I wasnt planning on adding plants till the wood was more settled and I had a little more of an idea where I was wanting everything.

Cleared up and first plants planted, Spiral Vals. I also took some of the floating Anacharis and planted them into a temp container as I wasn't sure where I want them and was wanting to see if I could get some roots started.


The 15G has started getting new growth on some of the plants. I hope to see enough growth to be able to put the trimmings into the 125. I found a worm or something trying to burrow into the sand. I removed it and put it into the container with the weird worms things I had found floating, trying to get out of the water (which are still alive). I think I will tank them all to House Of Tropics (LFS) to see what they have to say about them.

Some new growth after a week and a half.


Worm
 
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