the adventure begins...

deadlus3d

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Tomorrow I should be buying a Juwel Rio 180l.

My plan is to run tbis low tech.

So I will summarize my pkan as follows:

substrate - this will be aquatic compost as layer one, gravel as layer two,
and black sand as layer three.

plants - I will plant thus heavily from the start with easy plants.

lights - will use Juwel lights but will cover one tube with foil
so light will be 50%. They will be on six hours. Is this ok?

fertilization - once a week. Can you advise on dosage and which product to use?

water change - once a week fifty percent.

I have other questions in addition to the ones above.
I will be replacing the juwel filter carbon with white flosd. Do
I also need to replace the Nitrate sponge?

Should I use seachem prime to help cycling?

Do I need to warm the water even if fish will not be introduced for a few weeks yet?

Advice gratefully appreciated.

thanks
 
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Hi deadlus3d, running the temperature higher will provide for more favourable conditions regarding cycling + it will give you time to get used to how your heater works in your tank.
 
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substrate - this will be aquatic compost as layer one, gravel as layer two,
and black sand as layer three.

I’m not sure the gravel is needed here, the sand will drop down through the gravel over time and gravel will start appearing on top ov your nice black sand!

lights - will use Juwel lights but will cover one tube with foil
so light will be 50%. They will be on six hours. Is this ok?

sounds fine, you might want to consider partially covering each tube to get good light distribution in the tank, or I would definitely cover the back tube to prevents shadowing the front viewing angle of the tank


fertilization - once a week. Can you advise on dosage and which product to use?

I would recommend any complete liquid fertiliser, one with both macro and micro nutrients, such as tnc complete or the aquascaper complete liquid plant food. You can also buy salts and mix it yourself which works out cheaper but it somewhat complicated if you are new into things!

water change - once a week fifty percent

mat the start of the tanks life - first 4 weeks at least I would be doing 50% water changes daily, ramping down to 50% weekly as this helps deal with any excess nutrients released from the wood or substrate etc initially, avoiding algae. The Tropica app is good for guiding you through this process.


Do
I also need to replace the Nitrate sponge?

I personally would as I have found these specialist sponges tend to degrade and block more quickly but I’m not experienced with this particular one

Should I use seachem prime to help cycling?

mid you are planting heavily from the start you don’t need to go through traditional fish less cycling and adding ammonia to a planted tank is also not really advisable. Provided you can get to a position after a few weeks where you have zero ammonia readings and you have strong and healthy plant growth you can start to add fish. The lack of prime initially won’t harm anything.
 

deadlus3d

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I’m not sure the gravel is needed here, the sand will drop down through the gravel over time and gravel will start appearing on top ov your nice black sand!



sounds fine, you might want to consider partially covering each tube to get good light distribution in the tank, or I would definitely cover the back tube to prevents shadowing the front viewing angle of the tank




I would recommend any complete liquid fertiliser, one with both macro and micro nutrients, such as tnc complete or the aquascaper complete liquid plant food. You can also buy salts and mix it yourself which works out cheaper but it somewhat complicated if you are new into things!



mat the start of the tanks life - first 4 weeks at least I would be doing 50% water changes daily, ramping down to 50% weekly as this helps deal with any excess nutrients released from the wood or substrate etc initially, avoiding algae. The Tropica app is good for guiding you through this process.




I personally would as I have found these specialist sponges tend to degrade and block more quickly but I’m not experienced with this particular one



mid you are planting heavily from the start you don’t need to go through traditional fish less cycling and adding ammonia to a planted tank is also not really advisable. Provided you can get to a position after a few weeks where you have zero ammonia readings and you have strong and healthy plant growth you can start to add fish. The lack of prime initially won’t harm anything.

thanks.

for 180l tank how much fertilizer would you add weekly bearing in mind it will be a non co2 setup?
 

Tim Harrison

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ubstrate - this will be aquatic compost as layer one, gravel as layer two,
and black sand as layer three.
I think Matt is right, definitely not a good idea, the sand will fall through the gravel. I doubt it'll look aesthetically pleasing. Just choose one, whichever you like the look of best.
lights - will use Juwel lights but will cover one tube with foil
so light will be 50%. They will be on six hours. Is this ok?
Maybe a good idea to start with but if you choose plants that will grow across the surface and/or add a load of floating plants the lights should be okay as is once grown in.
6 hour photoperiod to start with is fine, once grown in you can gradually up to 8hrs if you like.
fertilization - once a week. Can you advise on dosage and which product to use?
TNC complete will be fine just use the recommended dose, if you plant heavily and intend to do frequent water changes it'll be fine. A cheaper but equally effective option is to use ready mixed dry salts. Aquaplantscare do a TPN+ mix, just add distilled water.
Or you could use @dw1305 Darrel's Duck Weed Index and dose when needs be.
I will be replacing the juwel filter carbon with white flosd. Do
I also need to replace the Nitrate sponge?
Save your money and keep the sponges as is, once exhausted the carbon and nitrate sponges will just act as any other filter medium. Replace once they start to wear out. I wouldn't use white floss it clogs up to easily. In a heavily planted tank the plants do most of the filtering, and you need to maintain decent flow from the filter.
Should I use seachem prime to help cycling?
It's not necessary to help cycling, the plants will take care of that, so again save your money. If you want to add water conditioner to remove chlorine that's fine.
Do I need to warm the water even if fish will not be introduced for a few weeks yet?
Yes, tropical plants will require tropical temps.
another question, do you test ammonia every day at first?
If you want to, but your tank should be cycled enough after a couple of weeks to start slowly adding critters. Test after a week or two, just to make sure the levels are fine before you add critters.
 

deadlus3d

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ok thanks.
but i thought you need nitrates to help the cycling. having the sponge would hinder the cycling process?
 
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Nitrates show the result of a plantless cycled tank (ammonia converted to nitrites then nitrates) your tap water and the fertiliser will also contain some but don’t forget you are not looking at a plantless tank, the plants etc will take care of the ammonia once growing well.
 

deadlus3d

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i have another question, assuming fish are in, when i do water changes do i need to add tetra aquasafe to the tank or add it to the new water before this is put in the tank?

thanks
 
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You can do either but most products recommend treating for the entire tank volume when afding directly to the tank. Personally I must admit I ignore this advice and have never had a problem...
 

deadlus3d

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sorry a bit late with this but with lockdown I decided to delay things.

tank should be with me at weekend and will start landscaping then.

I wanted to ask is there anything I can use to replace the juwel carbon and white sponge?
Any other medium that would benefit being introduced in a juwel filter?

Also do you know a black sand brand that does not cost a fortune?

I will use aquatic compost under the sand.

many thanks
 

hypnogogia

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@deadlus3d, if I were using the bioflow filter, I’d fill it top to bottom I this order:

coarse foam
Medium foam
Thin layer filter floss.
the rest with a free flowing biological media.
The carbon and nitrate sponges are a waste of time, other than as sponges in my experience. If you do want to filter over carbon then chuck in a bag of activated carbon to replace some of the biological media.

I’d also invest in the more powerful 1000lph pump instead of the 600 that it comes with to increase your flow.
 

deadlus3d

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for the thin layer filter floss would you use the juwel ones?

also when you say free flowing media do you mean Bio rings ?
 

hypnogogia

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Yes, although the Juwel filter pads are expensive. Any decent quality filter fleece should work.

By free flowing, I mean bio media that isn’t too dense/tightly packed. I use biohome ultimate as they are large chunks, so I get good flow.
 

deadlus3d

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Hi finally got my tank going.

Some of the Val's are already melting and some of the Amazon swords too.

Tank is a Juwel 180, I have covered 50 percent of the lights with foil.

There are also sign of BBA on the wood.

Regarfs
IMG_20200616_190920048.jpg
 

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jaypeecee

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...it will be a non co2 setup...

Hi @deadlus3d

Without a source of carbon, your plants are unable to grow and are likely to wither. And, the lighting seems very bright despite covering 50% of them with foil. But, this still means that 50% of your plants will receive too much light. Can you not dim the lighting on your Juwel Rio 180l? I have heard of other people with Juwel aquariums running into the same problem of not being able to dim the lighting. Having said that, I think Juwel have a replacement dimmable LED unit but don't take my word for it. You would need to check this out. Reducing the lighting brightness will reduce the amount of carbon required. I don't think liquid carbon products based on glutaraldehyde is the way to go as your Vallis probably will not get on well with this.

JPC
 

deadlus3d

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thanks for the reply.

i have used aquatic compost for the substrate but was wondering do i also need to fertilize the water column?
 

jaypeecee

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i have used aquatic compost for the substrate but was wondering do i also need to fertilize the water column?

Hi @deadlus3d

May I suggest that you have a read of the material on the following site to get an overall picture of what is required? Then, please fire away with any questions you may still have. We want you back here - soon!

https://www.advancedplantedtank.com

JPC :)
 
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