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Old 07-01-2019, 10:27 PM   #1
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Looking to move from a 10 gal to a bigger tank - lots of questions

Like a lot of people, I got into the hobby with a small (10 gal) tank, rather than starting bigger like I should have (live & learn). But I'm anxious to upgrade. I'd like to end up with a low tech, low-ish cost, larger tank.



My current 10 gal is planted with live plants but has blue gravel substrate (another rookie mistake) and the basic/built-in LED lights of the aqueon starter kit. Also a bit of a hodgepodge of a stock of fish. Oh, and my municipal water is so soft, it doesn't even register on a pH scale (which I compensate for with crushed coral in the substrate).



I admittedly don't have the money or patience or desire to go hi-tech in the new setup - I want to avoid C02, etc. but wouldn't mind low barrier add-ons, like an air pump (which I don't currently have) either. I also have a HOB filter at the moment and, although I'm open to exploring other easy filter systems (sponge, etc.), I also think I want to avoid anything like an under-tank filter (it sounds complicated. But maybe it's not?).



I'd also like a more.... thoughtful stock of fish. So, without further ado:
  1. What's the biggest tank, in your opinion, I can go and still meet the above criteria?
  2. Is there a good resource to find a list--preferably all in one place--of everything I need, to make the upgrade, and everything I don't know (I realize that's a weighted question)? I'm admittedly pretty nervous...
  3. Anything, in your opinion, I definitely must have? What about anything not to waste my time on?
  4. Favorite stocking options for the size?
  5. Anything I need to know transitioning both the plants and fish in the 10 gal to the bigger tank? I'd like to move everything (except the substrate) over.
  6. What am I not thinking of?
Thanks so much, everyone! Look forward to making the leap!
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Old 07-02-2019, 12:51 AM   #2
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A 40 gallon breeder is a nice tank to build up your stock in. It's also not too big. You can run a couple sponge filters on an air pump and get buy on a budget. You could even add an HOB with it.

Make sure you cycle the new tank first of course.

I say 40g breeder tank because you can get them cheap. They sell anywhere from $40-50 and you can get a metal stand for about $50-$60. For the size it's a pretty good deal.

A basic $30 LED light will suffice for low light plants.
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Old 07-02-2019, 10:43 AM   #3
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It's a bit more expensive than the 40 gallon breeder but 55 gallon tanks can come in kits so you get a heater, filter hood with lights.
As for substrate I have pool filter sand in my tanks. It's cheaper than aquarium sand (by a lot) and all the poop and stuff stays on the top of it so you can see it when you clean your tank. Just make sure you clean it first or if will kick up everywhere when you add the water.
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