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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I'm coming into a vintage, MetaFrame 55-gallon slate-bottomed tank. Wanting to stay "low-tech" and true to the "retro appeal" of the framing, but sort of leaning toward an amazonian (take this liberally, not literally) blackwater feel.

The catch is, I want it open topped and low tech. I'm researching a little on lighting right now, but I'm open to suggestions (either flora or fauna). However, I definitely want to expand my existing school of Diamond tetra and I'm considering taking a breeding pair of Angels off my buddy. Other than the set of constraints I've mentioned, I'm open.

The main thing for me is to get an authentic vintage, low-tech planted tank.

Go wild!

Thanks,
Kevin
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah, the equipment is going to be "modern," if you will. I'm getting the tank locally and I'm looking at some sort of suspended lighting.

I was sort of hoping for some ideas on scaping or suggestions for fish and plants.

Thanks though. It'd be great to have a matching ten-gallon, but I've got three currently running tanks, so I might be getting in over my head by setting up a fourth and fifth concurrently--LOL. The urge is there, I'm just trying to be practical.

Kev.
 

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I've always heard that resealing tanks that old is a must. They guy at my LFS says it took him about 1.5 to strip the seal off his 75. I'm thinking about changing the clear seal to black in mine but I'm planning on the stripping to take me a lot longer. sigh.

Patricia
 

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Go old school neons and angels. Tribute to axelrod.
Neons would be to small to put with breeding size pair of Angels. ;)
Good thought to do a tribute to Axelrod though.

As far as plants go that will depend on the amount of lighting you have. A 55 can be a challenge to put cheap lighting on but not impossible. I don't know what your budget for the tank is. Some consider CF cheap but it's out of my price range so I've had to ad lib on the 55. If you go low light there's less choices but you can still have a nice tank.

Patricia
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I like the tribute to Axelrod idea!

As for the "breeding pair," I don't know what they're up to these days, but I know several times they've spawned in the past (unsuccessfully) for my friend. I suppose I could always move them to different confines in the event they decided to spawn in my tank. Would it be terrible of me to separate that pair? (Is that bad PR????) They are good size, so I'm thinking it'd only be a matter of time before they (or even, just one) would start making meals of that Neon school.

The Neons with my Diamonds I think would create a neat effect . . .

Lighting is entirely up in the air. I've got no budget in mind, just taking the time to (evidently slowly) the tank up piece-by-piece, so to speak. I'm thinking something simple, especially since I am not much for the DIY stuff. Some sort of double to quad lighting fixture I can suspend above the tank. Probably nothing fancy. Limiting the plants is sort of my intent--otherwise I end up with a massive growing jungle (like my 20-Long!). I really want to keep the tank dimly lit, just not sure what my options are with fluorescent bulbs in that arena.

I've reluctantly accepted that I'll reseal it. I don't look forward to that, but it's a necessary evil, I suppose.

Thanks so much for the input!
Kev.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Axelrod no more

As much as I like that Axelrod concept, something's just telling me to let my buddy keep his Angels.

The "style" of the tank will be in Amazon Black Water, but I'm totally straying from that limitation with the inhabitants/flora. I just want to make it my "jewel", with species I'm currently crazy about.

Therefore, I've decided on what I term a "fancy tetra" tank: I'm going to go with Diamonds (since I've already promised my Black Phantoms to get them the hell out my 20 gallon!), 2 Bleeding heart species (got erythrostigma right now, so the other's based on availability) and Emperors for sure.

The plants will probably be some guppy grass (thanks to someone on here), peace lilly (I've had SUPERB luck with it submerged!), swords, mosses and eventually water lettuce. I do well with aponos, and they're a mainstay in all my tanks, so more of those.

As this brain storm turns into more actual work, I'll begin posting a few pics, for some welcome feedback.

Anyhow, thanks for the recommendations. Any additions to what I've settled on thus far will certainly be welcome as well. I'd love to hear about some cool, but relatively uncommon tetras. (I just don't want anything "outshining" my Diamonds--LoL.)

Kev.
 
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