The drilled and sumped 60P

Andrew T

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Joined
9 Apr 2019
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170
Location
Seattle, WA
Greetings from US.
Just recently quit the reefing side and have been planning to turn this ADA 60p into a planted tank.

The tank has been drilled, about 4 times total:)
Reef synergy Shadow overflow plumbed bean animal style and 2 return nozzles hooked up to 2 Eheim return pumps for a total of 600GPH .

The sump is a 20 gallon long DIY, 3 baffles. Water drains into a sock with bio media just underneath it in the first baffle of the sump.

Middle section of the sump which holds about 5 gallons will be used for floating plants for fast nutrient uptake, probably on a reversed lighting cycle to also keep the PH more stable between day and night time. Is that advisable for a planted tank?

ATI Sunpower T5 lighting : still need to change the bulbs. These are 10k+ bulbs , hence the blue hue.
ATO: Tunze osmolator.
No heater.

The plan is to hide the overflow and return nozzles as good as I possibly can since this is what I have to work with at the moment .

My scape is something that I wanted to do for quite some time.
A dark tropical forest kind of setting full of overgrown moss on branches with lots of shade for fish to hide that meets a nice white sandy beach; hence the darkness to light theme.
Whether I’ll be able to replicate it or not, still remains to be seen.
This is the scape that I could come up with: small rocks right side up will disappear . They’re out of place.

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The foreground will have Monte Carlo filling everything left to the sand and up the slope to the right side.
All the way up near the return nozzle A.R mini bunch will be planted for contrast and the whole wood will be covered in Fissidens moss.
Dark areas and rock around the driftwood base will be getting some crypts or buces. Kind of a simple plant list. I’m open for suggestions though!

The moss will be blended and brushed onto the wood a la @George Farmer recipe with a 2 week DSM.
Hopefully it’ll attach good and grow well for me.
For daily misting of the moss (about 4 times a day)I chose to seal all drain lines and one return line (second return line left open for some fresh air), insert my kids breathalyzer tube through the top and have it mist about 10ml of water 4 times a day to keep the moss happy.
Here’s a picture of the preliminary test I’ve done on it. Seems to work quite decent and gets the tank really foggy and keeps the wood wet.
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Lights will be hung a little higher than what they’ll be at and only 2 bulbs used (already at 58watt).
Some moss will be attached to the flat rock on the sand as well for a little more contrast.
Co2 system will be ready by the time the tank is ready to be flooded.
Constructive criticism always welcomed !
 
Last edited:

Andrew T

Member
Joined
9 Apr 2019
Messages
170
Location
Seattle, WA
2 batches of Fissidens , 5ml Greek yogurt and tank water going in the blender.
Getting ready to paint the wood and rock with some moss slurry.:cool:
 

Andrew T

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Joined
9 Apr 2019
Messages
170
Location
Seattle, WA
The breathalyzer was a bit too noisy and holding only 10ml of water .
Since the sand area is pretty open, I was able to fit in a diffuser that holds 500 ml of water and puts out some serious “fog”.
It will run continuously for 2 weeks, with the obvious top offs.
As water accumulates on the bottom of the tank, it’ll be taken out with a turkey baster .
I also replaced the T5 bulbs with 2 Giesemann Middays. The fixture is 12 inches above the tank but will be gradually lowered after the tank is fully planted.
The wait begins...
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Andrew T

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9 Apr 2019
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Location
Seattle, WA
Plant list:

-Hydrocotyle verticillata, Monte Carlo & marsilea hirsuta mix for carpet.
-Dwarf hairgrass around the rock
-Bucephalandra in dark spots on wood.
-Rotalla sp. green.
-Ludwigia Palustris.
-Fissidens fontanus on driftwood and rocks.
 

Andrew T

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Joined
9 Apr 2019
Messages
170
Location
Seattle, WA
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Ofcourse the plant list has changed a bit...

I was able to add Monte Carlo, dwarf hairgrass,
hemianthus micranthemoides and Rotala sp. h’ra which will give me a splash of orange/red in between the carpet and Hemianthus which is planted up by the return.
All that’s left (no more space)is to put some hydrocotyle verticillata in between the hairgrass and MC and to add quite a few buces in the rock and wood crevices.
Still 1.5 weeks away from flooding it...
 

Andrew T

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9 Apr 2019
Messages
170
Location
Seattle, WA
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H’ra getting redder each day. Probably gonna get very orange/red once it takes hold submersed and with a lot of light over it.
3x24W over the tank right now. Will see if I ever need the 4th bulb.
No plant melt yet. Should be interesting to see if any will melt after I flood the tank.
 

Andrew T

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9 Apr 2019
Messages
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Location
Seattle, WA
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Co2 full blast since Saturday.
Added Rotala macrandra Mini butterfly.
“Sand path” will simulate a river bed or something along those lines makes sense with branches towering over.... Need some gravel to transition from rock to sand to make it look more natural.
 

Andrew T

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Joined
9 Apr 2019
Messages
170
Location
Seattle, WA
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All 4x24w T5HO on. About 5.5w/g.
Fixture raised a bit to about 14 and no problems so far.
Growth is good. Macrandra butterfly starting to get a proper red hue as it grows taller towards the light.
I’m probably gonna rent a PAR meter to see exactly what I’m dealing with.
I put a bag of purigen in my filter sock and it’s amazing how much darker is has gotten in the last few days. I’m sure it’s removing the tannins the wood releases constantly cuz the water is pretty clear.
Also dropped in the sump right under the sock a 2 liter container of Seachem Matrix and some bio media and old sponge from one of my buddy’s tank to aid with the bacteria population.
Shrimp will go in soon.
Fish right after; in stages...still debating between green neon tetras and cardinal tetras .
 

Andrew T

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Joined
9 Apr 2019
Messages
170
Location
Seattle, WA
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Is that a thing?
Does it work?

Madness...

BTW Looking good!!!


Fil
Its a thing...no question about it haha
Works well indeed.
Here’s some growth from an already slow grower Fissidens. It’ll take off and cover most of the wood in a month’s time, maybe two:)

On another note, I still need to work on the sand path to make it more narrow with some rock chips/gravel to give the scape a sense of scale but I’m happy with how everything’s coming along so far.
2 weeks since being flooded.
 

Andrew T

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9 Apr 2019
Messages
170
Location
Seattle, WA
Sand is gone, moved the macrandra in the back of the wood, limited space there for trimming but light is good.
Filled the void the sand left behind with Aquasoil .
Planting tomorrow more hairgrass and Monte Carlo mix.
Layout is more open this way, more balanced and accentuates the wood a little more compared to the previous rock and plant arrangement.
Picture to follow tomorrow after planting.
 

Eplov

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14 May 2019
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Location
London
Looks really good and looking forward to seeing it without the sand. How did you go about removing the sand? Just siphoned it out?
 

Ed Wiser

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22 Apr 2018
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338
Location
Louisville,Kentucky
Tank is coming along good, plants are so much easier than corals.:) How has the overflow been as far as Co2 usage? Has it required you to run a high bubble count to get the desired Co2 level.:)
 

Andrew T

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Joined
9 Apr 2019
Messages
170
Location
Seattle, WA
Tank is coming along good, plants are so much easier than corals.:) How has the overflow been as far as Co2 usage? Has it required you to run a high bubble count to get the desired Co2 level.:)
Ed, no kidding. Corals can be a pain sometimes, especially SPS. I mostly gave up because of a dinoflagellate outbreak that lasted a good 6 month period.
I had to break it down and restart, with plants this time.

As far as CO2 usage, 3 bubbles a second is required to keep the drop checker green. That is with Co2 ON 3 hours before lights on.
That’s through an in-line atomizer from GLA, which isn’t producing a lot of super fine mist and I’m probbaly gonna end up sending back. Shoots out larger bubbles which float to the surface.


Today my clear PVC pipe is coming, I’ve got the rest of the parts, so I’m gonna finish up my Venturi external co2 reactor (Tom Barr design) and inject co2 that way. In theory, I should be able to lower the bubble count with better co2 dissolution while getting rid of the unsightly bubbles for the most part .
 

Ed Wiser

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22 Apr 2018
Messages
338
Location
Louisville,Kentucky
Sounds nice. I am getting a 120p and want to drilled for an overflow to a sump in the garage then back to the tank but use Lilly pipes for the returns instead of the lock lines. Have talked to the fellows at Reef
Synergy and they are making me a white overflow with Stainless steel mesh to keep the shrimp out of the sump.:) Then I can use a Frosty film for the background of the tank.
 
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