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4g Family Finnex

3062 Views 33 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Chucker
Started thread in the nano forum, but figured I should document progress here too....

Finally cleared a flat spot and filled it last night. Original plan was to set it up at work but that got vetoed.

Stock Finnex light & canister, with Eco-Complete for substrate. Will add peat capsules from RootMedic (currently on order).





Wood I found outside is still floating like a cork after four days of soaking, so I went with store-bought wood for now. Close up -





Cycle tests -
pH at 8.0 (hard water area)
Ammonia at 0.25ppm
NO2 and NO3 both 0 ppm


Plants from TPT member gordonrichards to arrive early next week -
Rotala colorata, Rotala macrandra
Anubias nana
ball of Süßwassertang
ball of fissidens moss
ball of Taiwan moss
Amazon floaters

Once things get settled, shrimp order to be placed with msjinkzd :thumbsup:
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Plants arrived today from gordonrichards. Put them in real quick, because I had two kids waking up from naps, and couldn't find any black thread.

Still thinking about switching the red stems to the right, and moving the green to the left.

(Please excuse the quick and dirty pics off of the Blackberry!)

 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Ammonia at 0.25ppm (same reading straight from tap)
Nitrite down between 0.25 and 0.50 ppm
Nitrate around 5.0 ppm

Cycle is coming along nicely :icon_cool

Switched from spraybar to the flared end on the canister output to drop the velocity on the return. Still trying to decide if I want to order lily pipes.

Found a few tiny snails, which I have been squishing as food for the cycle. Noticed today that there are a few egg packets on the susswassertang.

The more I look at the driftwood, the less I like it. Really need something smaller, but still want wood. Right now this tank is not aquascaped - it's suckoscaped.





Need to do a WC / run carbon - water is that yellow
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Did 20% water change last week with rainwater, helped clear up the yellow a bit. Green Rotala is at the surface now, and has fresh root growth, so it's real happy. Anubias also is showing new root growth. Also saw some white dots on the glass this morning. By the movement pattern, they look like copepods.

Parameters are pretty much the same as last Saturday.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Picked up hardness test kit, carbon, and Excel tonight. KH is at 4°, and GH is at 7°.

RootMedic (peat caps, shrimpy stuff) order is inbound, as well as Caton's leftover RM liquid fertz.

Still looking for better wood at the chain stores and LFSs.


Forgot to add before, I've got some long strands of green hair algae starting in the fissidens and susswassertang. That stuff is strong - moss broke before the hair did when I tried to pull it off.
 

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Glad the ferts made it!

Looking good! This will be interesting!

-Caton
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Once it clears up a little bit, I'll take a new pic. Just looking back at ones in this thread, the green Rotala has doubled since I got it. The red is leaning right, towards the CF bulb and is also just scraping the surface as well.

Much as I like mosses, they look like crap in here right now. Re-scape is on tap to use the new wood. I have to travel for work next week though, so I'm not making any major changes until after I get back.

Fauna also will wait until I get home. Definitely going to do RCS. Fish options are still up in the air though... Dario, betta, and CPD are all options at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Ahhhhhhhhh!!!!! A leak!!!!!! :help:



Was sitting on the couch on the other side of the room, and heard a steady SPAT, SPAT, SPAT sound of water dripping. Cleared out the area around the tank, and had lost about 6-8oz of water.

Couldn't find any crack, no leaks from the canister. When I did the WC, I topped right to the rim. Turns out that the angle of the output on the canister started a water path up and over the light bracket.

Situation is now resolved - you can all go back about your normal business again. :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Soooo, eleven years later this tank is getting a reboot. It had a red betta for a year or two, and some RCS that didn't last two long (unrelated to the aforementioned betta). It has basically served as a drinking fountain for the cats, and has an ugly tangle of anubias, moss, and hygros with a snail or two still lurking around with a million years of mulm on the bottom.

Today it will get emptied out, and the hard water deposits on tank and filter will get cleaned up. Plants (and any snails I see) will go into a bucket, and new Estes black sand goes down. Whatever wood from the old setup can be salvaged to go back in, and debating whether I throw in cholla wood for shrimpies - it's so bright compared to everything else. FedEx was here earlier, and just dropped off the Fluval Nano. The original canister will still be used, and then we'll start dropping ammonia tomorrow to see if the filter media has enough bacteria to handle a bioload. Then it's just marking time for everything to settle until some red or orange shrimp can go in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
Horrible iPhone pics just to document what is in there.... For scale, the containers are about 7.5" by 5".

First image is half-filled tank.
Second are the Anubias. Tons of roots, and tiny leaves. Trimmed roots in half or more.
Third are the random Hygros. Same deal as the Anubias - lots of roots, not so much on top.
Fourth is Java Fern, which is a new purchase. Was going to put it in the turtle's tank, but thought maybe I should try to grow it out some more first.
Fifth is the heap of goo that still has moss fragments.
Last is everything tossed in the filled tank. I have no idea what I want to do with the scape at the moment. It was more about seeing what I've got in there to ponder a way forward.

So, thinking about tossing the stems completely. I have small unused lava rock outside, like the kind you use for flower bed mulch. Wondering what a little pile of those with the Anubias tucked in might look like. Also needs moss. Lots of moss. New and better wood too. Input is welcomed!

Oh, and all of the old Eco-Complete and slop that came out of the bottom got tossed into the raised bed garden outside. Come spring, I'll stir it into the soil for the veggies.
 

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Glad you've resurrected your journal.

If it were me, I'd remove the stems, keep the ferns, anubias, wood. Get some more anubias, another piece of driftwood, maybe some Christmas Moss or something similar that you can glue in little bunches on the wood. If you add plants, something like crypts would work really well in a tank like that and they'll be fine with a root tab a few times per year.

Lava rock structures are also nice in tanks like this. With a bit of effort, some reef epoxy putty and super glue gel, you can build all kinds of things. Here's an arch thing I built for an old H. rubra tank:





It ultimately ended up covered in algae (as intended) and the divisions between each piece kind of disappeared. The same would occur in a tank with plants, moss, fissidens, that sort of thing.

You can also take random pieces of driftwood, manzanita or anything else you'd put into a tank and combine them in much the same manner to create faux branchy situations:



So don't be afraid to try different things.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Yeah, I'm pretty much settled on ditching the stems. The lava rock I currently have is between grape and half golf ball sized, so would need a lot of pieces to make a significant structure out of it. I'm still not sold on the cholla, since it is so bright compared to the sand. But I get that longer term, it's more about what makes the shrimp happy. Probably going to make an LFS trip today, to see if they have any smaller dragon stone like stuff. A piece about the size of a 16 or 20 oz can might work nicely. For reference, the tank dims are 12" long x 7.5" w x 11" h. Depending on what they have for moss, may grab some too.

Oh, and the Plant Nano 3.0 is currently set at 35% output, with light 3" above the water's surface, and 7" from surface to subtrate level.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
LFS trip yielded no moss, and a piece of dragon stone that once I got it home was too big, dammit. Debating if I just stash it away for the future, or take my chances on rendering it into smaller pieces. Other current point to ponder is top off. House is dry in winter, and I will need evap to cool the tank in summer. I like the concept of the IceCap Gravity ATO, even if it's not the prettiest thing in the world. It works on the same principle as a Nurce, which I had for kalkwasser top off 20+ years ago.

Oh, and placed my first ever order with Buce Plant -
Cryptocoryne 'Tropica'
Lamandau Mini Purple
Salvinia Natans/ Floating Fern
Christmas Moss - Golfball
Fissidens Fontanus - One Golfball
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Buce Plant order arrived yesterday. It was not warm at all, even with a 72 hour heat pack and me grabbing the box off of the porch before FedEx driver was back to the truck. I don't think they did a great job activating the pack, as I shook it around real good when unpacking the order, and can still feel some warmth coming off of it 27 hours later.

Everything went into the tank yesterday after a short warm up period, and today got a chance to play around with scaping. Had to cut the dragon stone down to about half of its purchased size, and pulled the out driftwood I originally had. Hacked the old Anubias roots way back, and tried to get them just into the cholla wood holes enough to hold on, but some have already started to relocate themselves. I did the same thing with Lamandau Mini Purple and it appears to be staying put for now. Crypt was put left front, and I used the rockwool and pot from it to rehome the stem plants, and moved them to the turtle tank. I tried to take small chunks of the moss and glue them to bits of lava rock, which I then tucked into nooks into the dragon stone, but that didn't work as well as expected. So for now, I have the mosses sitting in small container in front of the tank so they can catch spill over light. The java fern I had glued OK to a small piece of wood, and is tucked behind the rock for now, but should probably move to the left side for balance' sake.

It's not a total hot mess at the moment, just a lukewarm one. Quick and dirty iPhone pic below. Suggestions are welcomed!

Water Plant Pet supply Fish supply Aquatic plant
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
It's been a week since the Great Re-Scape of 2022. Hadn't grabbed ammonia from the store yet, so kickstarted things with a pellet of aquatic turtle food. Since I don't know the concentration of the store-bought ammonia, I plan on adding 0.5ml, and checking ammonia level tomorrow, same time of day. Current water parameters are:

pH - 7.6
KH - 6°
GH - 8°
Ammonia - 0 ppm
Nitrites - 0 ppm
Nitrates - 30 ppm
(All of the above with API dropper kits)
Temp - 68°F
TDS - 120 ppm

One leaf has melted off of the crypt, everything else seems chill so far. A pea-sized ramshorn snail is happily cruising about, hakuna matata style. Mosses have been moved to kitchen window sill. It is a south window which also has T5 sized full spectrum LED about 14" above them as they sit in large seed starting tray greenhouse top. Only way I can see getting them into the tank at the moment is ditching the dragon stone altogether, and putting wood in its place.

IceCap Gravity ATO arrived yesterday. I'm a little underwhelmed at the reservoir size (500ml), but it is threaded to hold a standard soda pop bottle, so I have already put aside a 1.25l Sprite bottle to bump up the volume. The bracket that holds the tubes needs about ¾" before you would even hit the high level hose, and I'm going to assume you'd need at least ½" difference between it and the siphon break hose that starts the fill. With an aquarium this small, I'm not sure I like the idea of it being almost 1.5" below the rim before it even thinks about filling. Will have to watch, see how well it works, and post info the Equipment forum once I've had a chance to evaluate it for my needs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Bottle of ThriveC arrived early this weekend, so tank got one pump yesterday. Also added 1.0ml of the store bought ammonia yesterday afternoon. Tank tested at 0.25ppm ammonia around 9AM this morning. Added another 1.0ml of ammonia this afternoon, and we'll see where we stand tomorrow. Light coating of algae has started on the glass, with a few random long strings of hair algae. The hitchhiking snails are enjoying the snacks on the glass.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
We've got nitrites. Around 1.0ppm this afternoon after dropping 2ml of the ammonia yesterday. Nitrates above 40ppm now. Will continue to dose low level ammonia so the bacteria have something to feast on.

Salvinia natans is happy, and is generating new leaves. Light haze of algae on the canister return in the background.

Plant Light Insect Terrestrial plant Grass
 
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