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80cm long term journey

Wallace

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7 Mar 2012
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Bramley, Surrey
Well here it is, I finally got my bottom into gear and sorted out the cabinet for this tank to sit on.

It's an 80cm in length by 30 wide and 40 tall, which is 96ltrs but with substrate etc works out to about 82.

Firstly the cabinet ..........

ahahuqaq.jpg


and now for the tank in situ .........,

6atu6eta.jpg


I'm using an APS 2x24w light unit and a Tetratec EX700 filter. EI dosing and liquid carbon.

Everything in here bar the cat litter came from my 60cm, and I already ha the MDF etc to make the stand so this tank so far has cost about £6 to set up.

Plant list is:

Microsorum Pteropus
Microsorum Pteropus Needle Leaf
Alternanthera Cardinalis
Cryptocoryne Wendtii Green
Amania sp Bonsai
Anubias Nana Petite
Staurogyne Repens
Java Moss

I will be adding more plants over the coming month or so once everything settles in. It was quite late in the day yesterday when I'd finished planting so some things will be moved around.

Currently there are 3 Harlequin Rasboras ( the others jumped a while back ) 5 Ottos and a single hard as nails Amano shrimp.

That's it for now I think so it's over to you guys now.

Thanks

Adam



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aliclarke86

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That's a lot of s repens. Should turn into a nice bush :). Looking really nice mate!

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kirk

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24 Dec 2012
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tewkesbury
Hi Wallace, I have a 80x40x40. So a bit similar nice dimentions to work with, cat litter is a bit of a pig, I've Been woundering if there is a cheap tank safe resin you could mix with the litter and Build camouflage hills ,banks dusting the molded item in litter to finish it then maybe attach suckers too to hold if needed.:)
 

Wallace

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Hi Kirk, it would be interesting to find out. I didn't have a problem with cat litter in my 60, but then I didn't have it built up as high.

I've got some gravel in tights under the hill, and bodge job home made substrate supports in place to hopefully keep the hill in place. It's just the drop off to the bottom left that is causing me grief. It's ok at the moment, but I fear as soon as I try to plant there it will all collapse.

I may end up flattening it off, and then hiding the substrate support with some clever planting. Only time will tell on that one.


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Wallace

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Not much to report since Saturday, water change and filter clean today. First time the filter has been opened in months and it wasn't that bad. I've removed some of the coarse foam and bio balls, which has helped to improve the flow a little bit.

I'll be adding an Ehiem Skim 350 at the end of the week, to improve flow even further and also to keep the surface nice and clean as there is still quite a bit of dust from the cat litter.


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Wallace

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Quick update, have just installed and plugged in the skim 350 and all I've got to say is WOW ! I'm amazed at how quickly the surface was cleared. It was only dusty anyway, not oily am horrible but still, WOW!

Only downside is the amount of bubbles it's producing but I guess that will subside over time?

Other than that everything is ticking along nicely, some Crypt melt but then I expected that. The Alternanthera Cardinalis is growing slowly but it a much deeper Red colour than it was last week and the Stauro has grown a bit, but I think another week or two before it will get a trim.

I've been racking my brains as to what other plants to buy but as yet I've drawn a blank. Any ideas?

Thanks for looking.


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Rob P

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If you're getting bubbles you've got it set too powerful and it's pulling in air. The idea is (as per the instructions lol) to start it off on lowest setting on the slider switch at the side and then increase this gradually as the foam piece clogs up.

I find it clogs very quickly as with fish in etc it sucks in floating food and stuff. Great for keeping the surface clean though and adding extra flow :) Needs a weekly clean, easily done at water change time.

Watch livestock when you get it in, a small piece of stainless mesh bent round a piece of 16/22mm pipe slots inside the head nicely and prevents deaths!

Cheers,
Rob :)
 

Rob P

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:D lol Have you got the main body pushed down enough in the tank so the head is freely floating?
 

Wallace

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Yup. I've just turned it off and checked the flow again. It was 1 click up from right down, so I clicked it down and plugged it back in and no bubbles.

Sensitive little bleeder isn't it!

I've seen the trouble you and a couple of others have had so I'll keep my eye on my livestock.

Thanks for your help mate, much appreciated.



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Wallace

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I added 3 juvenile Angels yesterday, and so far they have set about decimating the Ammania. They must have uprooted 10 or so stems so far, and it's only been the small stems, not the taller ones. They've had a go at the Stauro, but haven't uprooted any of that yet. The Ammania may have to make way for something else, maybe some Hygro of sorts and some Pogo Erectus. Something that will develop a larger root system, so not as easy for the Angels to uproot.

Also lost 2 Ottos earlier on today to what appears to be dropsy. The remaining Ottos seem fine though, will keep an eye on them.


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aliclarke86

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Dropsy really?? That's terrible mate..... Usually takes a while though?

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Wallace

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Dropsy really?? That's terrible mate..... Usually takes a while though?

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Hi Ali, it certainly looks that way.

I noticed that they were both very red around the gills and around the upper abdomen area about a week or so ago. Then shortly after that they both appeared to have a much larger, say swollen abdomen. I was thinking they were maybe carrying eggs, I I should say hoping they were but there was no visible yellow area and I couldn't make out any eggs. Then they both went into hiding.

Yesterday they came out of hiding, even more red and swollen but this time with very bulging eyes. Almost looked ready to pop. Within the time it took me to do a small amount of research as to what to treat them with, or if infact any treatment would have an effect at this stage, they both died.

The remaining ones look ok to me, as do my other fish.

I would maybe put it down to stress, what with moving tanks 2 weeks ago?


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aliclarke86

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Perhaps mate. It is a horrible thing though. I had a betta that got it a couple years ago I caught it pretty early but I was attempting treatment for over a month with practically no effect just prolonged suffering :(

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Wallace

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Quick update time. I've added a Koralia nano at the back left corner alongside the spraybar to aid flow and also to try and eliminate dead spots.

I've also added some Ludwigia Glandulosa where the shorter stems of Ammania were as the Angels just uprooted them an they have been planted in my nano kitchen tank. Also some Pogo Erectus and Myrophillium.

The plan for the Ludwigia and Pogo is that thy will fill in and hide the filter outtake a little bit. The Myrophillium has been planted at the back in between the Alternanthera and the remaining Ammania stems and also the front right corner. I'll let that fill out a little bit but I'm hoping to keep that quite compact and bushy. Also move some of the S. Repens over to the hill hoping that it will fill in and hide my bodge job substrate supports where the cat litter has slipped slightly.

Also started using RO water, just cutting a little bit in with tap water at WC time. Mainly to help in the fight against the lime scale line from evaporation. Currently topping up 1l every morning and wiping around the rim, and so far so good. Only using 2l RO to every 7l of tap water.

All in all I'm happy with everything at the moment, everything is growing slowly ( no sign of any Algae either touch wood ) but that's fine as this really is going to be a long term 'scape ( if you wanna call it that )

Here's a quick phone pic

aze8uveb.jpg



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Alastair

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Looking lovely so far mate. I can see the outcome of what youd like this to look like.
The cabinet is very very nice.

Id suggest that given youve added the koralia for extra flow, that maybe you could move the skimmer as this would be counterproductive against the flow from both spray bar and power head. They are both blowing right down and back left but the the skimmer is flowing from back right to the front of the tank.
You could maybe chop down the Inlet and add this back left corner (which would in turn increase flow a little as less pipe to travel up) and put the skimmer on the left blowing right and minimising having to add the koralia.

I like the sloping layout youve gone for but the plants on the right will grow quite tall losing the sloping effect. The first initial photo looks perfect and this looks great but I think adding the plants on the right to the back left would look even better. Maybe bring the M.Pteropus forward slightly and and add both the plants on the right to the back left. ......
 

Wallace

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Hi Alastair, thanks for your comments mate they are very much appreciated.

The skimmer isn't actually running 24/7, it's only turned on for 5 mins at feeding time and WC time to help clear away any leftovers / debris on the surface. I did have it running all the time at first, and have also tried it where the Koralia is, but because of the need to have it turned right down it was very ineffective with its low flow, so the Koralia does a much better job. Also, it didn't quite have the power to clear the surface with the flow of the filter pushing away from it. So I put it back and only run it for 5 mins a day now.

As the tank is only 30cm front to back I can't fit both intake and spraybar along the left side plus the Koralia. I'm hoping to make some Acrylic ones soon, and I also need to buy some more pipe work as this was all cut to length for my 60cm tank. Once I've done that I will then address the positioning of them.

Regarding the plants, once the intake has been moved I will move the Ludwigia further back into the left corner along with the Pogo ( which you can just about make out in the pic hiding behind the Myrophillium ) I know they will grow quite tall but once they've been moved further into the corner some more, which will in turn open up the flat ground some more, and with them growing slower than with gas injection I'm hoping to keep them in check so they don't get too tall.

There is a little area behind the M. Pteropus where the Angels like to hide, so I'm kind of against moving and planting behind it at the moment.

The whole 'vision' for the tank was to be some sort of a clearing in a forest, hence the taller growing plants on the right side acting as the entrance to another area of forest.

Please don't think I'm dismissing your ideas, as that's how it comes across. They have been added to my notes, and dependant on how things develop over the next month or so I may well turn around and say you were right.

Thanks mate



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Rob P

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The skimmer isn't actually running 24/7, it's only turned on for 5 mins at feeding time and WC time to help clear away any leftovers / debris on the surface

Do you not find not having it running all the time releases scum back onto the surface? As soon as i switch mine off you can see some cack escaping back out...
 
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