How do you scape a tall cube?

Discussion in 'Aquascaping' started by Luketendo, 5 May 2008.

  1. Luketendo

    Luketendo Member

    Messages:
    463
    Location:
    West Sussex, England
    Ok well I have a Juwel Lido 120 (60 x 40 x 60cm) and I'm kind of confused about what plants to use and how to scape it.

    - 2 x 24W Juwel T5HOs (Amazon Frogbit avaliable to dim the lights)
    - No CO2
    - EI solutions that Ceg told me to use (I don't think these are regular EI) KNO3, KH2PO4, MgSO4, Trace
    - 120l / 30g
    - Soft Water

    I've been using stem plants but they are annoying me since they have a tendency to be rather unruly. They grow extremely tall (even more so than my tank) and then the lower leaves deteriorate. I'm kind of fed up with my Hygrophila Polysperma anyway, although I do like my Ludwigia Rupens, but it still have its problems.

    I'm wondering if there's a way to scape my tank without stem plants (Vallis dies when I scissor it, if I pick the leaves there's like none left!.) I heard about Cryptocoryne crispatula var. balansae, and I like it, so perhaps I could use this and couple of others for the back? My water depth is actually more like 4cm, because I have thick substrate.

    I also really like Iwagumi at the moment, but I have a feeling it'd look extremely odd in my tank, unless of course it could be adapted? I wouldn't mind having this as a Cryptocoryne tank either (maybe with some Anubias on rock or stone), if Iwagumi isn't really an option (I think I saw George Farmer do a low tech largely around Crypts and stuff.) The only thing about Cryptocorynes is, though, is that the Cryptocoryne wendtii's I got from greenline haven't done well at all. The leaves grew really dark green / brown, and went crinkly like Pogostemon helferi (I like that plant, too). Then the plants went all yellow spotted and some melted. (Apparently this is Magnesium deficiency, which I've bought some MgSO4 for.)

    So before I ramble on anymore...

    - How would I scape my tank?
    - What plants could I use (other than stems, which annoy me)?
     
  2. Dan Crawford

    Dan Crawford Founder Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,266
    Location:
    Daventry, Northants
    IMO an iwigumi in your tank would be tough but not impossible, it depends on what rocks you have and your willingness to spend good money or find the right ones. As the iwigumi principal is based around rocks and their placement then there can be no sacrifice on the quality, size and texture of them.
    Balensae is a good choice and George's "low maintenace" crypt tank was awesome.
    GeorgeFarmer3-1.jpg
    Photography - Neil Hepworth
    This kind of layout wold work well in a tank like yours, it's even still got the Juwel filter in. This had the same kind of lighting as your tank but your missing CO2 which i'd strongly suggest getting.
    I'd get to my local PAH on the day they get a plant delivery and leave with a shed load of crypts and advertise in the For sale/wanted section for some balensae.
    Hope this helps.
    Dan
     
  3. Luketendo

    Luketendo Member

    Messages:
    463
    Location:
    West Sussex, England
    Is that Java fern in there with the crypts, or is it a form of crypt?

    Yeah that was the tank I was thinking of, thanks a lot. So basically I need to get lots of crypts. (I also forgot I couldn't really do Iwagumi because I need some wood for my Clown Pleco.)

    I've made a post in the CO2 forum concerning CO2, I need the cheapest non FE (I heard welding bottles are good) kit I can get (preferably with a solenoid.) My birthday is coming up so I'll be able to get one.

    I was looking at this Reg / Needle Valve / Solenoid on ebay:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/CO2-Regulator-Elect ... m153.l1262

    Obviously I would need a check valve, co2 tubing and a diffuser from AE or somewhere. I like the look of the rhinox ones but I'm wondering if there's any better design. Also I'd need help with placement since I wouldn't have a clue otherwise!

    I'd need one of those Drop Checkers but I know there's an article on them that I've read here.

    Good thing is I'm going to my Nan's in like 3 weeks and they have a pets at home. Last time I went there (like a month ago) they had some very healthy looking crypts with loads of leaves. Sadly I bypassed them.
     
  4. Ed Seeley

    Ed Seeley Member

    Messages:
    3,262
    Location:
    Nottingham
    I have that reg from Aquatic Magic but with a splitter too and there is a check valve at the base of the bubble counter so you can scratch that off your list of requirements! All you need is CO2 hose, a diffuser and a drop checker too. All are available off Ebay cheaply. The rhinox type are good IME. As for placement there's a diagram in the article I wrote that may expalin it better than I can in words. Basically place it where the water flow is greatest and preferably where the water is flowing downwards slightly too. In a Jewel tank this is often at the opposite end of the tank to the filter where the flow from the pump hits the end glass.

    This reg though is not the size thread for using with disposable bottles but is perfect for a FE. Why the reluctance to use one of those?

    BTW it is Java fern in George's tank with the crypts. In a deeper cube you could always use wood and/or rocks to build a bank of substrate to raise one corner too for something a littlke different.
     
  5. Luketendo

    Luketendo Member

    Messages:
    463
    Location:
    West Sussex, England
    Well I am only 14 Years old (almost 15) and I don't think I'd be safe to work around a FE. I don't think my Dad would want to do it either really. Isn't there a way to get the reg to fit welding bottles or something?

    I may ask my Dad about a FE but I'm not sure if he'd do it.

    Nah I just asked him and he doesn't want to do it, so I need to get all this kit to fit something that will just plug in (and is cheapest.)
     
  6. aaronnorth

    aaronnorth Member

    Messages:
    3,955
    Location:
    worksop, nottinghamshire
    There really is nothing to worry about, just leave the safety pin in and dont press the handle, and dont knock it over, dont think there is anything else.
     
  7. Luketendo

    Luketendo Member

    Messages:
    463
    Location:
    West Sussex, England
    My Dad doesn't want to do it...
     
  8. Garuf

    Garuf Member

    Messages:
    4,959
    Location:
    Leeds.
    Forget it then, unless you lower the light you'll need pressurised co2.
     
  9. Ed Seeley

    Ed Seeley Member

    Messages:
    3,262
    Location:
    Nottingham
    You might not want to tell your Dad this but the welding CO2 cylinders are just the same thing but with a bit less gas in. All a FE is is a CO2 cylinder with the trigger handle at the top.

    If you are stuck to the smaller welding regs you might find you can pick up a JBL Easy 2 set for about £90 and this includes JBL drop checker, tubing, a (rubbish) diffuser (but you can get a glass one for a couple of quid off Ebay), solenoid, regulator and cylinder. I have one on my Rio and it does a great job. You may even be able to find it cheaper than that.
     
  10. Luketendo

    Luketendo Member

    Messages:
    463
    Location:
    West Sussex, England
    WHERE WILL I FIND IT FOR £90?!?!!?!?

    Sorry I could only find it for like £160 so I'm a bit excited.

    Also heard there's a D-D set which is about £100, think it has a solenoid but not sure.
     
  11. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

    Messages:
    4,428
    Location:
    Leamington Spa, UK.
    The cheapest I've found the Easy 1 set is £66.60 with free shipping. Considering it is the same as the Easy 2 but without the solenoid it might be worth getting the Easy 1 as cheap as possible, and then source a solenoid second hand or something :)

    Oh, thats £66.60 with free shipping *and* 10% of if you're a new customer, so more like £60 shipped. Take a look here:

    http://www.zooplus.co.uk/shop/fish/tech ... /co2/78874

    Zooplus are a german company, but shipping is pretty quick (3 - 5 days, though my order arrived in 2!).

    Edit: Their refills aren't a bad price too, might be worth buying one at the same time to benefit from the 10% as this discount is a one off new customer coupon.
     
  12. Luketendo

    Luketendo Member

    Messages:
    463
    Location:
    West Sussex, England
    Yeah I suppose do you know of any cheap first hand solenoids?

    Found one, not sure if it's any good, but I know the company is meant to be:

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/CO2-magnetic-valv ... dZViewItem
     
  13. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

    Messages:
    4,428
    Location:
    Leamington Spa, UK.
    Lunapet are a very good company. I got my first regulator from them and haven't had any problems with it. Those that have had the odd problem with damage in shipping or faulty components have had good service from Lunapet too from what I've read.

    Of course, you could run without a solenoid. I run 24x7 on a 180 litre and my 2kg FE lasts about 5 - 6 months. That being said, I am moving to a solenoid when I finish moving stuff from this tank and scaping my new replacement tank.
     
  14. Luketendo

    Luketendo Member

    Messages:
    463
    Location:
    West Sussex, England
    Well without a solenoid 2kg would run for 9 months, but the 500g I'll use only 2.25 months. If I had a solenoid it'd be at least about 5 months (if I'm lucky) and since I'm only 14 would be much more affordable for me.

    Would that solenoid work with JBL Set Easy 1?

    If so I'd have a Co2 kit with solenoid for well under £100. (And like 8-10 months of CO2.)
     
  15. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

    Messages:
    4,428
    Location:
    Leamington Spa, UK.
    Should do. If you look at the picture below you can see that it simply takes CO2 tubing in from the botton and then out through the top (see the white directional arrow?) So you would have a short bit of CO2 line from the regulator to solenoid, then from solenoid to the diffuser (via a check valve and maybe a bubble counter).

    [​IMG]

    Don't forget to factor in several quid for CO2 tubing and a timer socket, and a euro plug converter (or just chop the euro plug off and get your dad to wire up a UK plug) if you haven't got them already :)
     
  16. Luketendo

    Luketendo Member

    Messages:
    463
    Location:
    West Sussex, England
    Why'd I need more tubing? Can't I cut the stuff I get with the Easy Set?

    My Dad can get a timer easy.

    I'd just need the plug. Which is like £5.

    JBL comes with a check valve. If I have a Drop Checker (included with JBL) would I still need a bubble counter?

    Shopping list:

    Jbl Set Easy 1 £60
    Extra Bottle £9
    Solenoid £20
    Europe to UK plug £5
    4dhk solution thingy £6
    Bubble Counter £6
    Glass Diffuser £10
    2 Clear Suction Cups from AE £1

    So about £120. That is great.

    Oh also, about flow direction, my juwel filter is at the back right of my tank and I also have a fluval 104 flowing out the same side. Which directions should I make these flow and where should the diffuser go?
     
  17. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

    Messages:
    4,428
    Location:
    Leamington Spa, UK.
    Yep, you could cut the tubing that comes with the kit, no probs there. just mentioning some stuff you may need to factor in :)

    The bubble counter might not be essential, but it is nice as a rough guide to how fast the CO2 is flowing. They can be had for about £5 or you can even make one out of a small pop bottle. Up to you though :)
     
  18. Luketendo

    Luketendo Member

    Messages:
    463
    Location:
    West Sussex, England
    So just to confirm the above will FULLY give me CO2 and I won't have to buy anything else?
    ...And it will FULLY work?
    If so I'll start buying.

    My Dad is going to talk to my Mum about it but I'm pretty sure I can get all of this.
     
  19. Ed Seeley

    Ed Seeley Member

    Messages:
    3,262
    Location:
    Nottingham
    Why not e-mail the seller and see if they can get the Easy2 for a good price? Then you'll be sure that it'll fit correctly.
    I bought mine from a European seller, SeaMe.com but they have gone up a lot since I bought mine by the look of things!

    I would get a bubble counter; in fact I've just fitted a beetle counter from Ebay to make it much easier to count the bubble rate.
     
  20. Luketendo

    Luketendo Member

    Messages:
    463
    Location:
    West Sussex, England
    Why wouldn't this work anyway?
     

Share This Page

Facebook Page
Twitter Page
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice