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Old 03-29-2005, 09:58 PM   #1
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Just A Newbie ? I reckon.

Just curious... Would it make a difference if I used a 50/50 mix Eco-complete and black aquarium sand? What would be a good filter for a 20 Gallon Long? Right now I have "Low-light/Hard to kill" plants like annubias nana, java fern, java mass, crypt wendii etc. The tank isnt set up but will be by this weekend. What are some good fish to start the cycling and how many?

Thanks, Chris

BTW I am really impressed by this site and cannot to wait learn from some of you.
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Old 03-29-2005, 10:01 PM   #2
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Oh yeah... The water here is very hard. To the point where if I leave water in a glass over night the edges will get crusty as it evaporates Can I use this water in my tank or should I buy water from the water store on the corner?
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Old 03-29-2005, 11:45 PM   #3
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i don't think you would want your fish to turn crusty right? you should get the tap water filter by Aquarium Pharmaceuticals to adjust the hardness of the water.

As for the filter, canister filter has always been an ideal filter for large planted aquariums. But since its a 20 gallon, a aquaclear should be good enough to clean the tank. You might want a mini filter on the other end incase one filter can't do the job. The substrates can be used 50/50, the difference will just be that it has a lower concentration of the Eco complete. I'm not a really good representation of this site compared to others here, so maybe they'll get the info on the fish. In my experience, i used black mollies because they're hardy and cheap. Plus they eat some algae too. SAE, otos and amano shrimps can do the algae job at the beginning. GL wit the tank
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Old 03-30-2005, 01:51 AM   #4
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Your water sounds worse than mine and thats saying something. You can ger a RO unit off of Ebay for less than $100. I think that is what I am going to need to do to get the most from my plants.
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Old 03-30-2005, 10:38 AM   #5
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Without Gh, Kh and pH readings of this tap water, I won't recommend using any filtered water. Without actual numbers I won't suggest a member spend hundreds of dollars on RO units.
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Old 03-30-2005, 01:19 PM   #6
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Good point. One of LFS says he will test my water for me. I think I will get some specs first and then consult with the real experts.
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Old 03-30-2005, 05:06 PM   #7
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Sounds like you don't own a master freshwater test kit. At $22 online, the one by Aquarium Pharmeceuticals is worth its weight in gold.
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Old 03-31-2005, 09:00 PM   #8
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OK I bought a Test Kit though it didnt test the GH. I did learn that straight from mythe specs are:
PH is 7.8
No Nitrites or Ammonia, but my Nitrates are around 80 ppm. Can you tell me if this is ok or do I need to get a filter? I am going to get test to test the hardness tonight.
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Old 04-01-2005, 04:35 AM   #9
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Nitrates should be 40 ppm max. Best you do a 50% water change now, and test again tommorow. Keep doing small waterchanges afterwards to drop the nitrates to less then 40 ppm.
pH is rather high, but should be acceptable for most fish. You could add some peat to the filter to naturally lower the pH.

HTH!

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Old 04-01-2005, 10:11 AM   #10
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You must not have gotten the AP master kit, as it has both Gh and Kh tests (both kinds of hardness)

However, with a pH of 7.8, your water is similar to mine. My dKh is 9, dGh about 13, and pH 7.8 - from the tap, rested.

The only fish I've had problems keeping are German Blue Rams. Every water change seemed to kill one.

80ppm is indeed high for nitrates. Like Thomas said, do some water changes. You may not be doing enough water changes, or not enough water changed each time.
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Old 04-01-2005, 10:55 AM   #11
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Mine says Master Kit on the front of my box, but doesn't have those test either Malkore. Only ph, Am, Ni, Na. I'll probably have to go buy the others individually I guess.

Dale
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Old 04-01-2005, 12:52 PM   #12
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The test kit I bought was the Master Test Kit not the professionl with the GH tester. The nitrate level (80 ppm) is straight from the tap. The tank isnt actually running yet because I was worried about the tap water. The GH is 250 ppm from the tap. Should I invest in a RO filter? Ive seen a tap water filter by Aquarium Pharm. for $45 at my LFS. Are they worth it?
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Old 04-06-2005, 07:59 PM   #13
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I think 80ppm out of the tap is of concern to you, personally, and anything over 40 can be dangerous for babies, specifically, so I'd look into that with your health department, or perhaps be sure the test result is reliable.
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Old 04-06-2005, 08:06 PM   #14
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actually malkore I just bought another Aq. Pharm. test kit and it doesn't have the gh test inc. Interestingly enough, the last I bought (15 months ago or so) didn't have the nitrate test. Now that I have two I have them all. Anyone else buy one recently and find this?
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Old 04-16-2005, 06:23 PM   #15
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Is this good? I bought some new test kits to measure Gh and Kh. Out of the tap the Gh is 286.1 ppm and the Kh is 161.1 .
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