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27 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is my Journal for my 36gallon "reef" style planted tank. I got out of aquarium keeping for a good 2 years just due to relocating too much and decide to get my tank up and going again.

I am running a 36gallon tank which is 30x20x14 (very cool dimension) with a 20g sump.


Lights: 1 Aquatic Life 36" 2x36w t5HO *Coming Soon*
: 2 retrofitted sunblaster t5ho *Coming Soon*
Filter: Sump, with biomax, perigean(for the first little bit to get rid of any tannins or crap in the MGOCPM) filter floss, and foam.
Pump: Mag Drive 5
Heater: AquaHeat Titanium 200W
C02: *Coming Soon*
Substrate: Miracle Grow Organic Choice Potting mix capped with Eco-Complete


Dwarf Baby Tears (HC)
Amazon MicroSword

Weeping Moss
Red Ludwiga

The Tank

I had to spend some time cleaning the tank of left over calcium build up from the previous owners salt tank, but after it was cleaned I went to the hardware store and picked up some egg crate to put around the edge of the tank to prevent layer creep. It was very easy to cut to size and also very inexpensive.

Next I screened the MGOCPM for organics and laid down a layer about 1.5" thick.

After this I did a quick rinse on my eco complete (I know I don't NEED to but I did anyway) and place it on the edge in the egg crate and on top of the MGOCPM, and built it up to a layer about 2" thick to give me a total of 3.5" of substrate.

I then stocked my sump with all my filter goodies, placed my heater and pump in the water.
To get the water from my pump to my main tank I just picked up some 3/4" vinyl tubing from the plumbing sections, and grabbed an old J joint from an older canister filter for the outflow and fit them all together.

I decided that since I have such a high PH due to well water, that I am going to do a have RO water and half tap water blend.

Next came filling the tank

Tis all for now, I will have much more in the coming few days.

27 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Egg Crate is just a type of light diffuser that works well in aquarium use.

Layer creep, is when you have multiple layers of substrate which are different colours so in order to prevent seeing that layering you put down a front layer of your "cap" substrate, but over time this layer will mix with the other layers and you will get an ugly looking substrate. The egg crate simply prevents the layers from mixing as quickly.
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