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Old 05-16-2018, 04:06 PM   #1
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Nonie's Build Journal

Hi there,

ZxC gave me some great advice in the Getting Started forum (Lead me by the hand please) and has suggested I start a build journal for my 29 gallon tank.

I have been having cycling problems in my 5 gallon Fluval Spec and am transferring my 3 critters (George, the Betta; Emmet, the Bristlenose Pleco; and Fred, the Zebra Nerite Snail) over to an old 29 gallon tank my brother gave me a week and a half ago.

I am starting with an AquaClear 50, Ehiem Jager 100W, Fluval 3.0 LED plant light, and an active sponge from Angelsplus.com.

I will be moving the filter media from my Fluval Spec into a smaller Aqua Clear filter my brother had (assuming it works!), plus the aquarium sand substrate and some of the decorations.

I have 3 betta moss balls that will move over, plus some duckweed.

I am getting Java Moss and Hornwort from Angelsplus.com. Supposed to arrive today with the active sponge.

I filled the tank last 5 days ago. I put in a catappa leaf 2 days ago. I have some rocks, a jar, plastic dinosaur, and a couple of fake plants in there now. I added the heater, thermometer, and new filter yesterday. The light came today. Lots of settings! What's a good setting for that light?

I took water readings of the 29 gallon tank today and they are:

pH: 8.0
Ammonia: .5
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 5

Where's that ammonia from? This is with nothing alive in the tank as yet. I do have old aquarium gravel from my brother (last used about 20 years ago) and one of his old fake plants in there. I also moved the thermometer over from my 5 gallon tank yesterday. Ironically, that tank's ammonia is now starting to come down, still no nitrites, and the same nitrates.

I took readings of our well water. We have very hard water here.

pH: 8.0 (if not even 8.2)
Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 5

I also dosed the 29g with a double dose of Prime yesterday in anticipation of moving the fish over when the active sponge arrives today. How often should I dose it with Prime during this cycling phase? And after that? I was told that since I am using well water I don't really need to use a water conditioner. Correct?

I will post a pic when I get it all set with the new plants and the fish moved over. (Side note: I posted a pic of George in the welcome forum, but couldn't figure out how to turn it right side up. Someone did it for me there, but how on earth do you do that?)

I welcome advice as to what to plant in it as well as how to stock it and with what when it is completely cycled. George, Emmet, and Fred are going to need some company in that big thing!

Driftwood to take down the pH? I thought the catappa leaf was supposed to do that. Maybe add another leaf? I have another leaf, but don't have driftwood.

Let the Adventure begin! =)

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Old 05-18-2018, 10:48 AM   #2
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I was using a piece of slate that my brother had with his aquarium stuff. It seemed to be leaching out some white … stuff. I'd rinse it off and then it would do it again. So I totally dismantled the aquarium to re-boil everything. While I was at it, I grabbed a brand new 29 gallon glass aquarium since my brother's had a repaired crack in it that was making me quite nervous.

So today's project: start over. =\

But! My active sponge from angelsplus is supposed to arrive today, along with my hornwart and java moss. Hope to move George, Emmet, and Fred to the 29 gallon by tonight.

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Old 05-19-2018, 08:33 AM   #3
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Good stuff, show some pictures when you get everything set up.

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Old 05-19-2018, 08:48 AM   #4
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Good move on new tank...
You'll be moving right along soon enough...
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Old 05-19-2018, 11:04 AM   #5
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Nonie's Build Journal

My active sponge and plants finally arrived yesterday. The sponge was a lot bigger than I expected. It's made to use with an air pump. Digging into my brother's old stuff I found 2 air pumps. One ran and I could feel the air but made zero bubbles. The other, a Profile 4000, ran quite well. Lots of bubbles. Poor George.

Between that and the Aquaclear 50 and the old Aquaclear of my brother's, it was just too much. I moved the media (originally from my 5 gallon) from the old Aquaclear into the 50 and removed the new media for later use. That helped, but I'm still concerned there may be too much current in there.

I put the sponge from the Fluval filter loose into the tank in case there were some good bacteria in there. You'll see it in the pics.

I tied the java moss to a rock and floated the hornwort. These came with a few small snails...

The slate had to go away because it even had that white discharge when I was boiling it.

See post #7 for image
Here is the aquarium to this point. I need to smooth the sand into the gravel more. The hornwort was clumping in one spot because of the current.
See post #7 for images

Best settings for the Fluval 3.0?

The pH concerns me. Petco said their water runs at 8.0 so that's what their fish are used to (all 3 of my critters are from there). Remember they're my only local fish store as we're quite rural.

Suggestions for replacing some of the fake plants with real?

Stocking suggestions?

Technical question: How do I rotate that slate image? The original is not on its side.

I am making a journey to the "big city" today so may be able to pick up some plants/fish from a non-Petco/PetSmart store.
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Old 05-20-2018, 12:00 AM   #6
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Today I went to Aquarium Surplus in Spokane and came home with some sludge full of bacteria, a lace leaf java fern, an anubius, a spider wood gnarled stick, and 6 ember tetra.
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Old 05-27-2018, 11:20 PM   #7
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