Typical story... a friend of my gf says "oh he's into fish now? He can have our old tank." So late last week I went and picked up what was once a children's/family tank with plastic plants, sponge bob decor, hood, light heater, add hob
Can't complain about "free" too much.
Took it home, tossed the junk we don't want and cleaned out/tested the tank.
It sat on on our balcony overnight full of water and didn't leak so I figured it was gtg. Drained and reserved the water.
Since this is a grow out tank and looks don't really, matter I decided to keep it cheap and practical. Substrate is Miracle Grow Organic Garden Soil ($8 for 40# @ Home Depot) capped with medium grain Art Sand from LFS
, natural tan color. I like the larger grain, play sand, while cheaper, is too fine, IMO
I layed down about 1.5" to 2" depth of MC and capped it with 1" of sand. 3 bags of sand at $5 each. I the filled the tank w water, carefully not to mix the sand and soil, and again let it sit on our balcony overnight full of water: and again didn't leak.
Drained most of the water the next morning, reserving half, and moved the tank to our hallway closet on top of my file cabinet. The space had previously stored stuff we really didn't use so it was a good, and cathartic, exercise to clear and prep the space.
I leveled the file cabinet and capped with an extra shelf board from those knock together metal shelves and placed the tank on one end leaving room for other tank related stuff.
I then filled the tank half way, carefully again, and moved the plants from our grow bucket in the kitchen and planted them into the MC w SS tongs.
Here it is right after I filled it. The white baggie in front is the bio max from the palm filter that used to be on the grow bucket. Plants from left to right:
Echinodorus amazonicus, left row
Blyxa Japonica, across the entire middle section
Microsorum pteropus, matted and tied to rock in the rear right corner
Anubias nana v petite (superglued to DW in rear right)
Ammania sp. 'bonsai' in the rear right corner
Ludwigia Repens x Arcuata, on right
Eichhornia diversifolia (not sure, just a best guess) next to the Ludwigia
Bacopa lanigera, front right corner
-the last two were RAOKs along with the Blyxa from a fellow SCAPE member last week
The water was a bit cloudy, and the HOB
that came with the tank was tired, and cracked, so I opted to use an Eheim 2213 canister I picked up used, but complete, for $40. I got enough hose segments with the canister to make up a complete working filter w the stock eheim pipes.
The seller had left the canister full so I did run it clean w fresh water treated w Prime and Stability. I plan to tear the canister apart and freshen up the filter media soon.
The integrated light and hood that came with the tank are handy, but won't cut it. Its only an 18" fixture in a 24" hood so I threw a $9 F15 GE Sunlight bulb @ 5100 in it... it's temporary. I've got a Finnex 24" FugeRay en route from amazon.
Not sure what else there is for now but I've got about $135 into this setup with the Finnex. Oh, and no more bucket in our kitchen!
which is priceless.
Here's a shot this morning with the filter placed next to it... wonder if it would be better lower?
I'll post pics of the growth over time once I figure out what the dosage of ferts will be and whether I add CO2
to this tank.
I welcome all questions, comments and advice