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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi everyone! I joined this forum in the spring, but haven't been very active as my work gets very busy in the summer. Since this is a tank journal I figure I should start by explaining how this all started, then get into the details below. This is going to be a low tech (no CO2, med/low light tank, root tabs for fertilizer). My water is softened well water, this is what we've been using in our tanks since I was little and tetras have always done very well. Swordtails did well too, but Mollies didn't. When I tested pH in the spring it usually stayed around 7.4-7.6 in the tanks, sometimes if I missed a water change it would be up to 7.8. I don't have my GH and KH measurements on me, but my water is very soft.


My family has always had fish (among other pets) since I was little. We had a 38 gallon non-planted freshwater tank and had a wide variety of fish over the years. One of the first fish that we got was a pleco (who's now approx. 15 years old). We were not very well informed, so suffice it to say that the pleco is now approx. 12 inches long. Much too big for a 38 gallon tank. After quite a bit of researching online I'm pretty sure it's a sailfin pleco (based on patterning I believe Pterygoplichthys pardalis, next step to figure out is whether it's a boy or a girl...). We hadn't added fish to our tank in a while, so we were down to one glowlight tetra (who must be at least 6+ years old) and the pleco. I started doing some googling online and realized that we needed to rethink our fish tank, and needed to get some friends for our glowlight tetra, seeing as how they are supposed to be schooling fish. Long story short, the pleco is currently living in a 150 gallon stock tank because I couldn't afford a larger fish tank this spring, and I've added a 10 gallon tank and a 20 gallon tank in addition to the 38 gallon.


The tank:
This fall I had saved up enough to get a bigger tank and decided to go with the 180 gallon. I ordered it from Glass Cages at the beginning of October, and it just arrived last week and got moved into place yesterday. So exciting! It's definitely huge (72" L x 24" W x 24" H), but I think it'll look great once it's been filled and planted and has fish in it.


Eheim 2217/Classic 600 Canister Filter (currently running on 150 gallon stock tank.
Hagen Aquaclear 110 HOB filter
Tetra Whisper 60 (will be moved over from 38 gallon once that one has been emptied)
Sponge filters
*If the Tetra Whisper stops working I will likely replace it with another Aquaclear 110


2x Eheim Jager 250W heaters (currently running on 150 gallon stock tank)
I keep the tank at approx. 75 degrees Fahrenheit


1x Beamswork DA FSPEC LED 72"
1x Beamswork EA FSPEC LED 72"


Substrate and Decor:
Pool Filter Sand (rinsed thoroughly)
Malaysian Driftwood
Untreated/unglazed Terracotta saucers and pots
Misc. resin decorations
Some plastic plants (because the pleco likes to rip them up)


Currently have to be transferred over: misc. floaters, 2x Amazon Sword 'compacta,' and maybe some Brazilian Pennywort that seems to have survived the pleco

Want to add: a full size Amazon Sword, some Vallisneria, and maybe something else that's easy to grow and does well in low tech. I'm mostly trying to give the fish some shelter and things to swim around and in so that they feel more comfortable in the big tank

**I'm going to try planting about 1/4 of the tank, on one side, and hopefully the pleco will decide to leave them alone. He ripped up most of the plants that I put in his stock tank, but this tank has a larger base footprint, so I'm hoping that if I keep the plants to the corner away from his cave he'll leave them alone


Currently have:
1x Sailfin pleco (Pterygoplichthys pardalis) - in 150 gallon stock tank
4x Glowlight tetra - in 38 gallon
8x Black Neon Tetra - in 38 gallon
1x Neon Tetra - in 38 gallon
5x Ember Tetra - in 38 gallon
2x Hengeli Rasbora - were in 20 gallon, temporarily in 10 gallon
4x Espei Rasbora - were in 20 gallon, temporarily in 10 gallon

My focus initially is going to be on bulking up all of these schools so that they all have a minimum of 15 fish per school. According to AqAdvisor I should have plenty of room. I'm thinking that we may also add some zebra danios, we like how active they are and this tank should be plenty long for them to really zip around. Other than that we're open to suggestions! I love gouramis and have some sparkling gouramis in the 10 gallon, but I'm thinking that this tank might have too much activity and flow for them.


Next steps:
Photos to come soon! I'll post some of the empty tank and then the process as I get it set up. Once it's set up I will be moving the pleco and the fish from the 38 gallon over. Because the filters were already running on their tanks I'm thinking I should be okay. I'll then be putting new fish in the 38 gallon to quarantine from a month (my local pet store is pretty good, but the neons and cardinals from there have gotten ich before).

Any thoughts/constructive comments are welcome! I don't pretend to be anything close to an expert on any of this, I've tried to do my research on this forum and other sites online, but I've only been seriously into this hobby for about one year. Thank you for reading!

6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Leaking tank!

Sorry for the delay in getting photos everyone! I will take some, just been busy with work. I started filling the tank yesterday, only filled it maybe less than a quarter of the way, and noticed a couple of slow leaks in the back. No gushing water, more like seeping up from between the tank and frame.

I've been researching to see if this is something that I can fix myself without totally taking the whole tank apart. I've never re-built a tank before, so I'm not comfortable taking the whole thing apart myself and putting it back together. Not a tank of this size! I have seen instructions for fixing leaks by just removing the bead of silicone on the inside of the tank and reapplying (without removing the silicone from between the glass). That might be something that I could do myself, thoughts on whether this actually works long-term?

I may also try to see if I can find a company locally who would re-seal it for me, maybe an aquarium maintenance/installation company? I figure it'll cost me at least $600 to use the warranty on the tank and have a new one shipped to me (since I have to pay shipping), so if I can find someone to fix the tank I have, that would be better.

Anyone have thoughts on this situation? Not what I was hoping for when I started filling this tank, obviously, but now I have to try to find a solution.

Update: Glass Cages is making me a new tank, so I'll post an update when it gets here!
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