More Questions from the Newbie..... - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 14 Old 02-15-2012, 08:37 AM
Well, I'll offer my $.02 which is likely more confirmation. I'm also not so sure having the aquarium in the youngsters room is a very good idea. It wouldn't be long and he'd be taking little toys and playing in that water or imitating mommy/daddy and FEEDING the fishies. You'd be better served having it in the living room.
As far as aquarium kits, I agree with Byron. Even 'ensembles' with just tank, stand and hoods come with the caveat that the lights provided will typically not support living plants (other than floating). I know this from my Marineland 60g ensemble.
Now when it comes to plants, it may seem too much 'bother' to begin with...and that's fine. But living plants not only add an additional dimension to the aquascape, but also do an amazing job in assisting in water purification. There value just can't be understated. If you want to hold off on rooted plants in favor of plastic, okay...but add some floating plants as they'll be well worth the modest investment.

Make sure you get an API freshwater master test kit. I didn't at first and am sorry I didn't (just found out I have very high nitrates in my tap (country well) water. The test kit will allow you to monitor your cycle process.

Filter: Stay away from HOB cartridge filters. Eventually the cartridge will need to be replaced and the beneficial bacteria in the cartridge gets thrown away. For a HOB, I'd go with and AquaClear or a Fluval 'C' series. I would not go with a canister on any tank less than 55g. (I run two AC70's on my 60g.)

Heater: Lots of good ones. I happen to have two Aqueon Pro submersible heaters. They are plastic coated aluminum (not glass) and have a green light/red light indication operation. I'm very happy with them. Why two? Well it's somewhat system redundancy (I have filters and heaters on a UPS as well). First is load solitting with both set around the same temperature, one heater shares the load with the other. If one fails, the other is there as a back-up. If one sticks on, two doesn't help, but without a high temperature alarm, nit much to be done about that.

Lighting: Even though your not thinking plants to begin, you might better have lighting that would support them later so do some homework on lighting.

Hope some of this helps.

Good luck and welcome to the forum.


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post #12 of 14 Old 02-15-2012, 09:41 AM Thread Starter
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Dumb ????......what is a HOB?
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post #13 of 14 Old 02-15-2012, 10:09 AM
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Hang on back filter.

I don't have issues with them though personally, but depending on brand some are easier to maintain than others. For beneficial bacteria, most is actually everywhere else in the tank, so loosing the cartridge isn't an issue. More of an issue in a new tank than established. The gravel is where most will eventually be along with decorations (any and every surface).

I use plants though, so i don't throw it away. I just rinse it and reuse, and will until it disintegrates. The Aquaclear and Fluval ones mentioned above are put together more like a canister, you can layer in filter media like you would in a canister which gives you more flexibility. Much easier to replace carbon while keeping your sponge and bio rings/balls.

I have a Topfin (Petsmart brand) HOB that came with the tank. They have a sleeve that fits over a plastic frame and the carbon is just poured in. It's possible with those to just dump out the old carbon, and dump new carbon in while keeping the mesh/sponge like sleeve in tact (until it disintegrates over several months).
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post #14 of 14 Old 02-15-2012, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by 1077 View Post
I have a 29 gal currently set up with plant's like vallisneria,anubias on wood,water sprite,crypt's, and some smooth stones.
After adding the plant's either real or artificial,,there is not a lot of swimming rooom in the 29 gal and Iwould opt for the 20 gal long were it me.
With afore mentioned 29 gal and decor, plant's , a dozen cardinal tetra's and perhaps 20 cherry shrimp, the tank looks a bit small to me. But fishes and shrimps are happy, (cept the small baby shrimps that cardinal's catch).
Am setting up a 20 gal High tank just for the shrimps this weekend.
Actually the 29 gal and 20 g long have the same amount of horizontal swimming room. The only difference between the two tanks is that the 29 gal is taller and therefor provides more room. I know this because I measured the 20 gal to see if it would fit where my 29 gal currently is.

For filters I second the Aquaclear suggestion. It is my favorite beginner filter. I actually have one on my 29 gal tank. I also love that you can change the flow rate. Great for fish like tetra and grourami that don't like much flow.


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