Cichlids of Victoria

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2010 5:18 am 
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I'm thinking Fern will use the cross brace to hold a divider more sturdy.

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Sat Apr 24, 2010 5:18 am
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 Post subject: Re: Questions about acrylic tanks
PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2010 6:41 am 
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Yes the center divider will be braced with the aluminum cross braces. I do have 2x4's running around the rim of the sump, the braces are just to prevent any bow that may occur over time. Plus the aluminum I am using is really high grade with lots of silica in it so that it can withstand constant moisture and not oxidize. Its another left over from my dads old company so we figure it would be a grand use for it.
The water depth should be roughly 1' with 2-3" of sand and dirt. Most bushy plants don't get over a foot in height and the stem plants that do can be topped and the tops planted to grow into a second plant. With 1 foot of water I don't have to go too overboard with lighting as the water won't have the depth to diffuse it much.... But someone may be giving me some salt water coral light fixtures if they do I will swap the florescent out for those and have massive amounts of light :lol:
Once I get the braces in place and the divider tacked onto it I will do a good cleaning in the tank and run the water into the sump so that the plants have plenty of poo and whatnot to start growing with. I think for a week, I will just run a piece of flex pipe from the pump into the 'inlet' box and just have it running without the tank involves so that I can get the plant logistics worked out and break and dead zones that may occur. I think I will be using some drift wood in the sump to help break up and redirect flow so that its not just swift in the middle and dead on the edges.

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I think I need a bigger tank......


Sat Apr 24, 2010 6:41 am
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2010 8:53 am 
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This is aquaculture now.
Have you looked into aquaponics?

You can use a hydroponic media bed or bucket farm that can either be ebb and flow fed from a sump, or trickled fed from an emiter. You can grow food grade veggies for your self.The water is collected and fed back into the system, presumably free of nitrates.
You can finish off or polish the water by trickling it down a southfacing moss/algaebed. Some people have built this into a solar water heating moss box.

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Last edited by teknikAL on Sat Apr 24, 2010 3:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2010 3:09 pm 
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Well I'm hoping the plants grow very well in the sump, I would like to be able to propagate and sell some of them.

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I think I need a bigger tank......


Sat Apr 24, 2010 3:09 pm
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2010 12:31 pm 
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Ok we have sand and some water the aluminum cross supports and the divider!
ImageImageImageImage
The little 'brackets' that are holding the divider onto the cross supports are made by cutting up a cheap plastic bathroom garbage can, they are zip tied onto the cross supports and attached to the divider with a stainless nut and bolt.
I should be getting along 40-50 plants today and those will be planted after I add more water. I plan on getting some water changes done today and I will be using all the old tank water to fill the sump so that the plants have all kinds of gook to help them start growing well.

The whole purpose of this build is to have something that didn't cost much but is fully functional, this is not a work of art or intended to be worth something to others.....

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I think I need a bigger tank......


Sun Apr 25, 2010 12:31 pm
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2010 3:13 pm 
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for sure. it grows plants in fish poop. does not need to be pretty to fit in the living room.

lol it is coming along nicely. although i would switch out those lights for some t5 lighting if possible. not sure what you got there or if i asked you that when i was there.

but some t5 with some 6700k and plant lights work really well. they cost a little more but put out a lot of light. you can get 54w per 48" bulb. 4 bulbs should have your plants growing over the sides of the sump. :D

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2010 7:00 pm 
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I have 6 48" T12's over it now, If it needs more I will add more fixtures. I may be getting some coral grade lighting for cheap, if I do I will hang those instead, I'm going for the cheap and functional look :lol:
No, I didn't have any lights up when you came by... I think lighting wasn't set in stone then either.

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I think I need a bigger tank......


Sun Apr 25, 2010 7:00 pm
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 Post subject: Re: Questions about acrylic tanks
PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 6:21 pm 
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Well there she is! There's about $150 worth of plants in there plus a bunch that I stole out of various tanks. Its still not hooked up to the tank yet, I'm still working out a few kinks before I hook it to the tank.
Oh and excuse the random jerks in the vid... I managed to trip a few times :lol:

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I think I need a bigger tank......


Thu Apr 29, 2010 6:21 pm
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2010 7:24 pm 
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very nice. good idea with the large pvc to hold up the wall. those amazons will get huge in there.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 30, 2010 5:52 am 
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Ya, the first time I turned it on I noticed that plywood wall bending and I have tons of pvc pipe laying around so it was just a matter of cutting it and drilling a bunch of holes in it.
I'm hoping those swords get massive! My lfs buys most any plant so I would take them in for credit and get a few smaller replacements. Most of the stuff in there is stuff that's in demand now, he knows I will be bringing him all of my extras and trimmings once it fills out nicely.

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I think I need a bigger tank......


Fri Apr 30, 2010 5:52 am
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PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2010 3:02 pm 
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Here she is!
ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage
Note the few degrees of fall on the lateral drain pipe, I also have a screw off cap on each end as a clean-out if I ever need to de-gunk it. I'm going to need to staple some plastic strapping under the tank to support the drain pipe some. I still need to make stand pipes but those can wait a few days, I can deal with the toilet flush noise in the garage for a while.
I'm going to be turning it on for 2 minutes every hour or so for a few hours, I want to slowly blend the 2 body's of water so I don't shock the fish. It also needs a bunch more plants.....

Acknowledgments; Thank you dad for being the mastermind behind this whole crazy build!

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I think I need a bigger tank......


Mon May 10, 2010 3:02 pm
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PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2010 7:43 pm 
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WOW you did a great job.

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PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2010 8:26 pm 
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yea awesome. very cool. get some wisteria. it is a weed.

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Mon May 10, 2010 8:26 pm
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 Post subject: Re: Questions about acrylic tanks
PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2010 9:02 pm 
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Amazing Fern!

Maybe you mentioned it, maybe not, but do you have any plans to keep any fish in the sump? Seems there must be a wide variety that would be at home in the jungle once it is established. It would be cool to see some in it as it is now with all the space :idea:


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PostPosted: Tue May 11, 2010 4:50 am 
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I may go catch some more crested gobys and put in there and see if they will breed, but that would be all that would go in the sump.
Dre, I cant grow wisteria for the life of me, I kill the easy plants and the hard ones grow like mad for me. I have about 20 or so different kinds of plants in the sump so far. I plan on increasing the variety till its full, then as they grow propagate and sell them.
Its looking like I'm going to need another florescent fixture, the light isn't quite as bright as I want it.
I also need to go by a pool store and get one of those rubber ducky floating thermometers.... Just because I can :lol:

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