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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello Everyone,

Just joined!!! I have been using these forums for a while but finally decided to get some direct advice! I have had a 20 gallon Low tech tank for about a year now. It has been a blast and I got everything perfectly balanced. I finally got a 55 Gallon tank on sale and just set it up a few days ago.

Tank Specs:

55 Gallon Tank
Odyssea Quad T5HO w/timer (stock bulbs-2x 10k 54w, 2x actenic blue 54w)
Penguin 350 (70g)
Tetra Whisper EX30 (30g)
Aqueon 150w heater (1 at the moment)
5 x 12 lb Caribsea Floramax Midnight Substrate
1 x 15 lb Seachem Flourite Black Sand Substrate
Driftwood, River Rocks added

Current Plants:
2x amazon swords
1x Melon sword
1x micro amazon sword
4x small potted babytears
4x italian/jungle val
3x lidwigia
2x anubis
*I'm going to add some more background plants as well as java-fern to the driftwood eventually

So after running the tank for a couple of days I took the Tetra EX30 off of my 20g and put it on the 55g, as well as swapping the Penguin 350 cartridge and biowheel with the penguin 200 on my 20g. I then added an Australian Rainbow fish a few hours later. I was told/read that by adding the existing cycled fiters/media that I could go ahead and add a few fish. I just got my lights and set them up last night. I plan on just running the 2 x 10k bulbs for 6-8 hours a day. I am Dosing Seachem's Flourish Complete(few times a week) and API CO2 Booster(daily). I basically am looking for any advice on Lighting, Dosing, livestock etc. I want to add a school of Rainbows, Harlequin Rasboras, Denison Barbs, SAE, Otos and maybe a bristle-nose pleco. I just spent a lot of money on the set up so it could be a while before I get all my fish. I'm trying to avoid CO2 for a while.(it seems confusing and expensive/risky) But I do love heavily planted tanks. Any advice is appreciated. I will post pictures when I get home from work!
 

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Adding filters from a cycled tank does help to cycle a new tank. But you do not know if the tank is cycled without testing for ammonia and NO3.

- do get a test kit
- only add fish/shrimp to a cycled tank

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I have looked at that exact filter, I just don't have the funds to buy it right now. I read that the CO2 will get lost with my HOB filters so I am a little worried about that. But hopefully these will be alright for a while. I also want to get a CO2 system instead of liquid but they are expensive as well. Is my Lighting ok with the 2 x 10k 54w bubls? Should I replace them with lower Kelvin ones?
 

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I will have to look into that. Hopefully a little less expensive than the Eheim.
PetSmart has them on sale every once in a while, that's when i got mine. Paid 130 i think. Also heard PetCo has a lot of them on clearance right now, in store only. Might be worth to check it out :)
 

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Actually if you take the sludge or cartridge and out it in the new filter it jumps starts the bacteria colonizing the new filter cartridge or bio media. Jump starting the tank cycle. It won't be and insta cycle but it does help. I have cycled my tanks within a week doing this. And by testing ammonia nitrite and nitrate.

Like I said its not an insta cycle, but it does help speed things up
 

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Actually if you take the sludge or cartridge and out it in the new filter it jumps starts the bacteria colonizing the new filter cartridge or bio media. Jump starting the tank cycle. It won't be and insta cycle but it does help. I have cycled my tanks within a week doing this. And by testing ammonia nitrite and nitrate.

Like I said its not an insta cycle, but it does help speed things up
my OPINION is that if you have some well aged filter media from your old tank you should be instantly cycled.

BUT only for a small fish load, so maybe 2-3 small/med size fish. a couple more could be added every week or so. you can jump start your new media by rubbing it against your old or squeezing some of the junk out onto the new media.

Test your water and do water changes as needed for the first month
 

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i think you have

a. too much light for not having pressurized co2
b the wrong color lights ( 6500k and either 'color' bulbs or 10000k would be a nice mix)
c. a duty to post a pic of your tank
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Update: I have been doing a 15g-20g water change daily. My rainbow fish is doing great. The water still has some trace elements but not much. I have been using the 2 x 54w 10k lights for 4 hours, then all 4 bulbs (54w actenic bulbs) for two hours. So far no algae. Plants colors seem to be doing alright. Here is the pic I've been promising.



 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I'm seeking information and advice for my 55g, but this picture is of my 20g I mentioned in my original post.

 

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I think both your tanks look really nice. Clean, uncluttered and simple (in a good way)

advice? need a background on the 55, I'm partial to black but yellow, orange, purple, brown can all look good as well. I use poster board and for the price you can switch them out, see which one you like and bring the rest back
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Thank you! I plan on getting another black background on the 55g. Just haven't gotten to it yet. Haven't tried the plain poster-board though. Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I went ahead and purchased a 6700k bulb and a Colormax bulb. They are 24w each. So I replaced the Atenic blue bulbs with these but alternated each with the a 10k bulb. So it goes 10k, Colormax, 10k, 6700k. Hopefully this will help out my plants. My rainbow fish already looks better. I will post a picture with the new bulbs tomorrow.
 
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