MrStoffel's 60-P - Taken by storm

MrStoffel

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Joined
27 Jul 2018
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54
Location
Antwerp
Hello everyone!

My name is Kristof and i'm an aquatic enthousiast from Antwerp, Belgium.
It has been almost three long years of not having an aquarium in the house.
Now i am ready to go at it again. I had planted tanks as a kid from the age of 6 to 15.
Then i made the switch to saltwater reef tanks until three years ago.
Some pics of my last tank can be seen here
I shut it down due to not being able to put in the time anymore after the birth of my 2nd daughter.
Now that she is older, i feel like i can start making time again. However, the startup cost of a reef tank is exponentially more costly than planted.
I also never attempted aquascaping when i was young, it just wasn't known back then. So this really seems like a nice new challenging aspect of the hobby to dive into.

This is what i have thus far:

Tank: ADA 60-P
Stand: DIY ADA syle cabinet
Light: Twinstar 600S
Filtration: Oase biomaster thermo 250 with seachem matrix, purigen, filter wool
CO2: JBL inline diffuser with sodastream cylinders and solenoid
Soil: ADA Amazonia
Ferts: Greenaqua Macro & Micro

?temp_hash=604259453db2d5f3ecc3858c6ba267d8.jpg
 

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JEK

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15 Dec 2008
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Denmark
Great pictures from you reef tank!
Some good equipment for your 60 P. Do you have any particular styles/hardscape/plants in mind?
 

mort

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15 Nov 2015
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Welcome. Beautiful reef tank. Looking forward to seeing what you can do with a planted tank.
 

MrStoffel

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27 Jul 2018
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Location
Antwerp
Thanks for the kind words.

What i would like to achieve is what most of you call a jungle style scape i believe.
As for the shape i really don't know. Although the triangular shape might suit the tank most, since it is only viewed from 2 sides.

This weekend i went out with my oldest daughter of 7 to source some hardscape materials.
When searching through all the boxes with stones and wood i started to realise this would become a lot harder than i had expected.
Eventually we ended up choosing 3 beautiful rocks and 2 pieces of wood.

At home i started scaping these together in a makeshift cardboard aquarium.
This is when i realised it would be good idea to make a journal here and gather some valuable feedback.
Here are some of my attempts, not really happy with any of them so far...
I might look for another piece of wood with smaller branches? (like spiderwood)

IMG_6428.JPG IMG_6430.JPG IMG_6438.JPG IMG_6440.JPG
 
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JEK

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15 Dec 2008
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Location
Denmark
So my advice for hardscape is to first and foremost get a lot more of it. You simply don't have enough materials to create a high impact hardscape. And don't try to find the "perfect" piece of wood because that's really hard. ;) You can always saw pieces off and glue several pieces together to get the look you want. I find more branched wood like red moor and spiderwood in general are easier to work with compared to driftwood. The rocks you have are fine, but I would advice you to get some smaller pieces as well which will make it much easier to create a natural look.
If you want to create a triangular layout you might find some inspiration from my current setup https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/60-p-succession.57385/page-5
 

Deano3

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8 Feb 2012
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Firstly welcome to ukaps

Have to agree with jek i was going to say exactly the same thing defently need a lot more hardscape or will look very bare.

Keep us updated looking forward to seeing more.

Dean

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MrStoffel

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27 Jul 2018
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Location
Antwerp
Thanks Johan & Dean,
I will go out after work today to see if i can pick up a big piece of spiderwood and some extra rocks.
When i feel confident i can make a better looking scape in the cardboard box, i will start scaping in the tank.
I'm not in a rush here. :) (this is something i learned during my reefkeeping years)
 

Deano3

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8 Feb 2012
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Good stuff thats the best way just take your time and will be worth it.

Defently a lot more rocks i would say to make bigger impact.

Dean

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alto

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24 Dec 2014
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5,918
You’ve enough hardscape already for some very nice 60P scapes :)

When you add more hardscape, it significantly reduces water volume and can make “good flow” (throughout the aquarium) more of a challenge
If this tank is going to be more of a joint project with your daughter, I’d keep things a bit simpler so she can easily help with all aspects of the tank

Current trend is for loads of hardscape so thought I’d link this ADA flashback :D

https://www.adana.co.jp/en/contents/process/index.html
 

Janci

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4 Sep 2019
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Location
Dubai
hallo
Nice cabinet and materials to start with.
Did you make the cabinet yourself?
When hasrdscaping, keep in mind the golden ratio or rule of thirds. It helps to mark the areas on the carton box to assist where to put the rocks.
It helps to avoid to have the rocks on top of each other. Have in mind that height you can achieve by using cheaper rocks and soil.
 

JEK

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15 Dec 2008
Messages
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Location
Denmark
You’ve enough hardscape already for some very nice 60P scapes :)

When you add more hardscape, it significantly reduces water volume and can make “good flow” (throughout the aquarium) more of a challenge
If this tank is going to be more of a joint project with your daughter, I’d keep things a bit simpler so she can easily help with all aspects of the tank

Current trend is for loads of hardscape so thought I’d link this ADA flashback :D

https://www.adana.co.jp/en/contents/process/index.html
I have to disagree with you there, I simply don't think anyone can make a "very nice" layout with only the materials we see in the pictures - unless it's Dutch style. ;) Sure you don't need huge ammounts like the trend is today, but those pieces of driftwood we see on the pictures are simply not large or interesting enough.

I think whether hardscape obstructs flow is more about how it's placed and less about the ammount and dense plant growth can also obstruct flow a lot. Also I'd argue that when you're a beginner, it's easier to create a nice scape that's more hardscape dominant until you learn more about the growing patterns of different plants. :)
 

MrStoffel

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27 Jul 2018
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Location
Antwerp
hallo
Nice cabinet and materials to start with.
Did you make the cabinet yourself?
When hasrdscaping, keep in mind the golden ratio or rule of thirds. It helps to mark the areas on the carton box to assist where to put the rocks.
It helps to avoid to have the rocks on top of each other. Have in mind that height you can achieve by using cheaper rocks and soil.
Yes, i built the stand myself from 18mm plywood panels. They were glued first, then screwed, sealed, sanded, and painted.
I chose this color, because the cabinet standing next to it has the same color of doors.
If anyone is interested, this pdf has all the panels needed to build this.
 

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MrStoffel

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27 Jul 2018
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Antwerp
Yesterday i picked up some small rocks to create detail and i purchased a great piece of driftwood.
I will start soaking it this evening to see if it leeches a lot of tannins.
It is also quite large, so depending on its buoyancy i might have to fixate it to a piece of eggcrate and place the rocks on top to keep it in place.

I understand where both opinions concerning the hardscape are coming from.
I do see the big difference allready between the first pictures and now with the big piece, and i just threw it on top of the rocks quickly to take a picture.
If anyone has an example of aquascapes with similar big pieces of wood, feel free to share them, it would be much appreciated.
 

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alto

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I have to disagree with you there, I simply don't think anyone can make a "very nice" layout with only the materials we see in the pictures - unless it's Dutch style. ;) Sure you don't need huge ammounts like the trend is today, but those pieces of driftwood we see on the pictures are simply not large or interesting enough.

I think whether hardscape obstructs flow is more about how it's placed and less about the ammount and dense plant growth can also obstruct flow a lot. Also I'd argue that when you're a beginner, it's easier to create a nice scape that's more hardscape dominant until you learn more about the growing patterns of different plants. :)
I guess Takash Amano’s Nature Aquarium volumes are full of “Dutch style” scapes then :p

Unless the size of the three stones are deceptive in those photos, they appear sufficient for a decent Sanzon Iwagumi

As to beginners and elaborate hardscape, I guess I’ll bow to your extensive experience
(I’ve only set up ~30 pre-scaped tanks for beginners sold through a local shop)
 

MrStoffel

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27 Jul 2018
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Location
Antwerp
I guess Takash Amano’s Nature Aquarium volumes are full of “Dutch style” scapes then :p

Unless the size of the three stones are deceptive in those photos, they appear sufficient for a decent Sanzon Iwagumi

As to beginners and elaborate hardscape, I guess I’ll bow to your extensive experience
(I’ve only set up ~30 pre-scaped tanks for beginners sold through a local shop)
The size of the stones is quite clear from the pictures i think.
The box is 57cm long, where i have drawn a line in black marker is the width of the 60P tank.
I guess there's only one true way of finding out if i can create a nice hardscape now, and that will be to start scaping with the soil & materials i have in the tank. I have 9L of amazonia regular, 3L of amazonia powder and 2L of power sand S. Should i place the power sand in a bag?
 

JEK

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15 Dec 2008
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Denmark
@MrStoffel that new piece of driftwood looks great! If it floats a possible solution could also be to glue it to stone. As far as I know people usually just place powersand on the bottom with soil on top.

@alto I don't want to derail Mrstoffels thread with this discussion, but I think your condescending sarcasm (at least that's how I read it) is both distasteful and unnessecary. This is just about a difference in opinions after all.
 
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I would use all the stones that you have as far to the front as you can and plant heavy in the back. Just use substrate first to get a good slope and place the wood strategic cause compared to the stones its quite bulky. Just be creative and you can make something beautiful of it.

Checks this journal, Tim uses a big piece of wood and it looked really good.
https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/naturescape-pearling.52807/page-3
 

CooKieS

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As an beginner, the more hardscape You'll use, the more the 'mistakes' Can be hidden. ;)

Iwagumi style or less hardscape scapes are very hard to master.

Good Luck :)
 

MrStoffel

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27 Jul 2018
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Location
Antwerp
I’m still not thinking outside the box. ;)
But i came up with this today. The soil would be highest under the stones, sloping towards the left. This would make the angle of the wood a bit more dramatic. What do you guys think?
b3e0bd25deedc0b4be57544f01918498.jpg
6377ad713cfeae04e65c5d91fbc8c56b.jpg



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