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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When the wife (who has always liked my tanks but has never before expressed interest in her own) mentioned that she would like an aquarium in her music classroom, I was immediately on the case. There isn't much that's more fun than setting up a new one!

House of Tropicals had Deep Blue Professional 12" rimless cubes for what I took to be a decent price. Naturally, I got two!

The lights that I ordered from Amazon are interesting and inexpensive.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01AWDYKW8/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
I'm hoping that they'll be on the high side of low light, but with 6 W worth of LED bulbs they might throw somewhat more PAR than that. That's why they make glutaraldehyde, right? :wink2:

I ordered ADA Amazonia for the first time. Expensive stuff, but 12" isn't a whole lot of real estate to plant.

Both will have a corner HMF powered by an 80GPH pump. The pump will return water to the tank through a RFUG, much like my paludarium. That particular tank has never had ANY algae (aside from sporadic BGA when nitrogen gets too low), so hopefully the idea will work for the cubes as well.

I'm thinking of setting up one as an island-style nature aquarium and the other as either a iwagumi or mini-riparium, depending on how the lights work out.


(Back to school tomorrow led to a lack of empty horizontal surfaces in the house. In case you're wondering, this is set up on the kids' dinner table solely for the purpose of taking a pic.)

We'll see how they progress. Any thoughts are appreciated!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'll probably be in charge of hers, at least for the time being. She just wants something pretty and low-maintenance. Sounds like crypts, anubias, ferns, and mosses to me. I'll send her a small kit with bottles of metricide and safe, and have her bring home weekly water samples so I can check for fert levels.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Ask and ye shall receive!

Moved both tanks to the classrooms yesterday.

Here's the wifey's (taken with her iPhone):





Her chorus and guitar students are really excited about it. Most likely a betta, which is OK. She only has access to ferts, kits, metricide (etc.) through me.

Pics of mine soon. I'm thinking mine will be my first CRS colony. According to Discobee, my parameters are pretty good: kH-1, gH-4, TDS ~150, pH 6.4.

I'm rapidly learning that Aquasoil is a different beast than Black Diamond.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
A little more info:

Homemade mattenfilter (swisstropicals 40PPI) powered with an 80GPH pump. Water return is through a manifold of 5 half-inch PEX pipes under the substrate with lots of holes (RFUG; y'all know I'm a fan of these!).

Lights are these: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01AWDYKW8/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 . I was worried that they'd be a little on the high side and might require metricide dosing, but this doesn't seem to be the case. During cycling, lights were left on for as much as a week at a time due to my lassitude. I don't have research to back this up, but all of my RFUG/mattenfilter tanks are remarkably algae-free. I always chalked it up to low light, but it may have something to do with the sequestration of algae spores under the sub. Feel free to chime in if you know more than I do! I have no way of knowing exactly how bright any of my DIY lights (or these) are without a PAR meter.

An interesting side-note. The mattenfilters for these tanks are small enough that trimmed pieces of the same foam can be used to 'cap' the mattenfilter. On both of our tanks this will be a space for an Phalaenopsis orchid and some emersed stems. My beloved Ludwigia glandulosa is on my emersed portion; wifey hasn't picked her stem yet. Maybe Hygrophila sp. 'Tiger'.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Yes indeed!

Here is mine newly set up. This was the last week of October.



Now it's grown rather lush.



I add a little 28 day Metricide when I remember to. Generally about one mL in the 7.5 gallon tank. It stays around 10 ppm nitrate, 1 ppm phosphate, 6-8 degrees gH, 2-3 degrees kH, and 6.4 pH. 5 cherries and one Amano. I got the Amano from Petco for $3. He's much bigger than any other Amano that I've had. He was sold as a 'Japanese algae eating shrimp.' Does anybody know if these are the same species (as I assume they are)?

Dwarf sagittaria, java moss 'trees', and a few crypts (wendtii and spiralis) are planted. The mattenfilter has some java ferns and bolbitis attached. Red root floaters float while Ludwigia glandulsa and a Phalaenopsis orchid share space on top of the mattenfilter.

Hers is in the shop :(
It had to be taken home for rehab due to persistent algae, melting dwarf sag, and a mysteriously absent betta...

I gave her a bottle of some ferts that I'd mixed with distilled water. Phosphate, nitrate, CSM+B, and gH booster. I MAY have neglected to tell her to add it over several days. I think that killed off the sagittaria. The betta just flat disappeared over a weekend. No corpse in the tank, no fish chip on the floor; I have no idea what happened. No one had access to the room. Perhaps he jumped and was carried off by a mouse (native to her school...)
 

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Amano shrimp and the japanese algae eating shrimp are exactly the same. Petco has a tendency to mislabel certain species.

Sent from my SM-J320P using Tapatalk
 
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