Go Back   Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community > Freshwater > Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion
Click Here to Login

Join Aquarium Advice Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com
 
Old 08-28-2005, 02:11 PM   #1
Aquarium Advice Regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Stuttgart, Germany
Posts: 98
Just read all the stickys. Have a few questions.

I just set up a 42 gallon aquarium with a Fluval 204 filter. I am looking into getting a new hood with PC lights for it to replace the current hood which has two NO bulbs. Currently It has one tiger barb from my neighbors tank that they broke down and is cycling. I am in Germany and dont speak German so I did my best for a substrate. I got two bags of a clay based porrus looking substrate (1-2cm) with nutrients that is specificly for planted tanks and It is about 3-4" deep.

This is what all started this. I want a planted tank like this!
http://www.aquariumadvice.com/photop..._community.JPG

My questions

I am worried about the substrate and before i get to heavily into adding things I want to make sure I got it right or if I need to add something else.

Can I add plants to an un cycled tank or should I wait for it to cycle first?

Should I add as many plants as I can all at once or a little over time. ( Read somewhere to do it all at once)
__________________

__________________
b4tn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2005, 04:38 PM   #2
AA Team Emeritus
 
Jchillin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: New York, NY (The Big Apple)
Posts: 14,951
The substrate sounds like Eco-Complete. Can you confirm this? A few questions:

What will be your total wattage with the PC lights?
Are you considering CO2 injection?

It's always good to add a full spectrum of plants. However, if you add all of them to an un-cycled tank, you will definitely need to dose nutrients (plants consume NO3, which will be absent from your tank for a couple of weeks).
__________________

__________________
_________________________________
Jchillin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2005, 05:12 PM   #3
Aquarium Advice Regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Stuttgart, Germany
Posts: 98
Its not Eco-Complete, I will get the name off the bag when I get home from work though.

I am looking at getting 2 x 55W PC lights in the 6700k range.

I am still unsure on the c02. THis in my living room and I have a 3 year old so I dont want to have any huge tanks. I would like to keep it as simple as possible. If C02 is required I will probably go with the sugar yeast method.
__________________
b4tn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2005, 05:27 PM   #4
AA Team Emeritus
 
czcz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: US
Posts: 2,820
If you want to keep it simple as possible, use less light. Note that your plans have you entering high light, and the margin of error decreases as light increases. You can't mess around with higher light, and will need ferts and likely need stable CO2 (pressurized). If you prefer steep learning curves, going for high light is a great way to learn, ime.

You can add plants heavily or lightly in the beginning if you plan on dosing and tracking ammonia. If you heavily plant, keep them growing, and don't overdo the bioload, you could add fish immediately. Many of us do this. Just throwing it out there.
__________________
"2- before attempting to plant, have a beer or a Bourbon. That will help to steady your hands…" -- elwaine

wet.biggiantnerds.com
czcz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2005, 07:00 PM   #5
Aquarium Advice Regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Stuttgart, Germany
Posts: 98
Thanks for the reply. I am the type that likes to jump in and learn as I go I really love stuff like this and maintenance is not an issue I dont mind fertilizing or dosing at all. What I mean by keeping it simple is that if I have sumps and hoses running all over the place like my Reef my wife is going to kill me I need to keep it clean looking. I did alot of reading tonight. C02 is not out of the question yet I just need to look into it and see what is available to me first.

I will do whatever it takes though (withing reason) to get a full planted tank like your avatar or the link above.

You think 2x55watt pc lights is to much? I was thinking it was average and trying to get about 2-2.5 watts per gallon. I am going shopping in the morning so I will see what I can get.

Oh, and the substrate I got is called Aqualit. Not much info on the package except that it is good for plants :shrug:
__________________
b4tn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2005, 07:06 PM   #6
Aquarium Advice Regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Stuttgart, Germany
Posts: 98
oh, one more thing. I am having problems finding a light config. My tank is nearly 40" long. If I get a PC bulb that covers the length of the tank it is to bright. Is it neccessary with PC lights to cover the length of the tank? Or should one 96 watt be ok?
__________________
b4tn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2005, 07:35 PM   #7
AA Team Emeritus
 
Jchillin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: New York, NY (The Big Apple)
Posts: 14,951
Your bulbs don't have to cover the entire length of the tank, but centering is good to keep the light centered and reaching all areas. A 96 watt bulb is fine also. That'll give you about 2.3wpg, which isn't bad at all.

I've never heard of Aqualit, though it does sound a lot like Eco-Complete. Does it look anything like this?

In regard to CO2, it is recommended for tanks with that amount of light. CO2 is pretty easy to conceal under the tank in the cabinet. Hoses can be run along the same pathways as the filter hoses. Without CO2, you will probably have a nicely planted algae tank, which is definitely not wanted.

BTW, both tanks that you mentioned are CO2 injected.
__________________
_________________________________
Jchillin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2005, 11:46 PM   #8
AA Team Emeritus
 
czcz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: US
Posts: 2,820
I don't think 2.6wpg of PC is too much light if you're willing to make the dedication Until your tank is set up, try searching for medium and high light tanks and methods in the archive. tetrin is running a 40g and has increased light (NO + ODNO) while using plants and algae as nutrient indicators, and has posted a lot of pics and observations lately. Travis Simonson posted his fert schedule as of a couple months ago. Just a couple threads that hopefully will help you know what you're getting into.

96w PC is plenty for many plants, and I agree with J that losing 5" to each side isn't a big deal, as well as his ideas for the wife acceptance factor.

While I want to encourage you to start with at least medium light, notice that some of the plants in the tank you linked don't need medium light levels, particularly the java fern and crypts. You could make ~1.5wpg your goal and have a pretty planted tank, and with CO2, even at low ppm, you'll get a real leg up on algae. Low light tanks are easy to keep in balance and are arguably less maintenence than non-planted tanks (and certainly less maintenence than higher light tanks), and you could always add light later since you're interested in DIY. Yet another option.
__________________
"2- before attempting to plant, have a beer or a Bourbon. That will help to steady your hands…" -- elwaine

wet.biggiantnerds.com
czcz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2005, 02:53 AM   #9
Aquarium Advice Regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Stuttgart, Germany
Posts: 98
Wow, somehow I missed this thread on beginner mistakes
http://www.aquariumadvice.com/viewtopic.php?t=53432

Thank you all for the advise! I will go ahead and stick with the 36" 2x30 watt NO bulbs I have now untill I can get a decent C02 system in place.

Thanks again
__________________
b4tn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2005, 07:53 AM   #10
Aquarium Advice Regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Stuttgart, Germany
Posts: 98
Hopefully this is good. I got two 30 watt NO special plant bulbs with German reflectors. My current hood didnt have any reflectors. the site is in german but here are the specs on the lights. No mention of the color temp though. They seem pretty yellowish to me compared to the daylight bulb that was in before though.

http://www.dennerle.de/technik/Licht2.htm

I looked into the C02 and there are some very nice C02 systems for around $200 that will conceal nicley. I will probably pick one up at a later date.

I changed out my substrate as well. I found some that is a sandy muddy looking soil. I put about 1" on the bottom and then put the clay based 1-2cm rocks about 2-3" on top of that. I wasnt careful enough and my tank turned into pond water. I am going to let it settle for a day or so before I turn on the filter and go from there.

I also got a test kit for PH, KH, N02, N03, GH, FE, C02, and P04.

Thanks again for all the useful advise.
__________________
b4tn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2005, 08:40 AM   #11
AA Team Emeritus
 
Jchillin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: New York, NY (The Big Apple)
Posts: 14,951
The link is in fluent German...but I did see something about 2,400 lumens This puts you at @ 1.4 wpg, a really nice level to start at.

Kudos to you for getting required test kits (NH3 is the only one missing) and even those you won't need for awhile.
__________________
_________________________________
Jchillin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2005, 09:04 AM   #12
Aquarium Advice Regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Stuttgart, Germany
Posts: 98
Funny, I found a LFS in my town about two blocks from my house. I am really dissapointed ion the lights though. They just seem really yellow to me. At the place local to me I found some bulbs actually labled with 6700k I will probably grab a pair and experiment with combinations.
__________________

__________________
b4tn is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
ick

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Betta & ich - read sticky, but still have questions mgodby Freshwater & Brackish - Unhealthy Fish 14 11-30-2009 09:07 PM
Questions for fish experts. If you want to be challenged read! Lars1985 Freshwater & Brackish - Getting Started 4 10-10-2008 02:56 PM
Read QT article and have a couple questions spinman Saltwater & Reef - Getting Started 2 08-03-2005 02:56 PM
stickys are outdated sdveirs Forum Admin & Announcements 0 04-27-2005 02:00 PM







» Photo Contest Winners







All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:12 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.