Who has soft water?
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Who has soft water?

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Old 11-03-2009, 07:51 AM   #1
 
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Lightbulb Who has soft water?

Hi,
who here has soft water (pls indicate parameters)?
What fish do you have?
And do you do a special water treatment of any kind or simply use your soft tap water?

Thanks for your help
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:24 PM   #2
 
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We've been discussing this in another thread so I won't repeat everything here. Just to let others know, since I have zero GH and KH out of my tap, I use dolomite gravel in the filter to increase hardness to 1-2 dGH and keep the pH stable. This has worked for 12+ years. It is safe and natural, and inexpensive; I replace the 1/3 cup dolomite maybe once a year.

I've also commented on suitable fish, almost anything from South America or SE Asia.

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Old 11-03-2009, 02:24 PM   #3
 
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lol I know Byron and you were really helpful.

I was just curious who else may have soft water and how they handle it, apparently we're the only 2 thou.
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Old 11-03-2009, 03:35 PM   #4
 
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lol I know Byron and you were really helpful.

I was just curious who else may have soft water and how they handle it, apparently we're the only 2 thou.
Thanks. I agree, getting as much advice is best. I think you will find few around NA in our enviable position. Most areas have moderately hard to very hard water. The hardness of course is due to where the water comes from and what it passes over/through. Here in Vancouver it is rainwater that collects in lakes in the mountains and never comes into contact with minerals but washes down the vegetated slopes, thus acidic and very soft. Rainwater that has soaked into the ground often passes over limestone or similar rock and picks up hardness. For interest I have a couple of times tested the pH in local streams, and those with rocks and boulders in the streambed is always higher (mid-7's).

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Old 11-03-2009, 05:56 PM   #5
 
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Yea that's what we got, country water, filtered through the TN mountains, running down pastures etc.

I was actually wondering about the utilization of rainwater, I have a barell and could well collect from the big garage (tin roof not shingles) BUT that would leave me with the mystery what to do in the winter, it only gets to like -5F here BUT that's plenty enough to freeze any water, so then what would I do for water exchange in the winter...

I think there's just TOO many options for me at the moment with this new soft situation lol
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Old 11-03-2009, 06:10 PM   #6
 
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Yea that's what we got, country water, filtered through the TN mountains, running down pastures etc.

I was actually wondering about the utilization of rainwater, I have a barell and could well collect from the big garage (tin roof not shingles) BUT that would leave me with the mystery what to do in the winter, it only gets to like -5F here BUT that's plenty enough to freeze any water, so then what would I do for water exchange in the winter...

I think there's just TOO many options for me at the moment with this new soft situation lol
Rainwater is ideal for acidic soft water fish, but the problem is what else may be in it. It could pick up some metal from the roof, but metals are extremely toxic to fish in very limited amounts depending upon the metal. When you have such perfect aquarium water out of the tap, why risk it. There are hobbyists in my area going on about using rainwater, but I don't know why with our water.

Keep us posted on how your aquarium progresses, it sounds wonderful.

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Old 11-03-2009, 08:13 PM   #7
 
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The roof is brand new so it wouldn't have any 'rusty run off'. However that would still leave the winter time issue, I'll stick with what I got and see how it works for me I guess
[quote=Byron;268306
Keep us posted on how your aquarium progresses, it sounds wonderful.
Byron.[/quote]
Thanks I'm HOPING its gonna turn out at least half as wonderful as the plan in my head are

If I did it right you should see a pic of one of my many old tanks here now and I def want to created something far better then this
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Old 11-04-2009, 02:05 PM   #8
 
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That tank had excellent plant growth from what I can see, well done. I understand your comment for something different, it is quite "thick" isn't it. But beautiful plants. I'm assuming the light is what you mentioned earlier, and the lower kelvin ratings are what give the aquarium that somewhat darker "reddish" glow. I would definitely add a full spectrum as one of the tubes in the new setup, I think you will like the difference in plant and fish colours.

Could you indicate the setup, i.e., fertilization schedule, substrate? I might be able to pick up something. There are lots of ways to do this, no one-only method, and I like to find the best for the least in terms of cost and effort.

Byron.
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Old 11-04-2009, 04:11 PM   #9
 
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Yea well the day to day tank actually looked more 'trimmed' then this lol, this was a picture taken to demonstrate what happens when I'm gone for few days Cause folks didn't believe me how crazy it all grew.

You mean set up for the new one's now or the old one's I all had?
The old one's (once properly established and that's a point I can never stretch enough), the set up conatined 2x4ft @32watts lights, water exchange each Sat about 1/4 of each tank's total amount of gallon, food only every other day and only small amounts.
As for all my old tanks fertilization (now I gotta watch what I say online here) let's say it was naturally fertilized by what happened when the fish ate
That was "all" the tricks for fertilization and substrate. No special nothing in there. Just gravel, good water and appropriate fish stock (by which I mean no tank was overcrowded) and bunch plants in all.
No CO2, no chemicals, never used non that stuff.
The only "special" thing that set my Killi tank apart from all others was the peat I used under the gravel which for one seemed to seriously boost new plants but the actual reason I had added it was to lower the KH to make it more suitable for the Killi then the tap water was.

Do you fertilize a lot?
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Old 11-04-2009, 04:27 PM   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angel079 View Post
Yea well the day to day tank actually looked more 'trimmed' then this lol, this was a picture taken to demonstrate what happens when I'm gone for few days Cause folks didn't believe me how crazy it all grew.

You mean set up for the new one's now or the old one's I all had?
The old one's (once properly established and that's a point I can never stretch enough), the set up conatined 2x4ft @32watts lights, water exchange each Sat about 1/4 of each tank's total amount of gallon, food only every other day and only small amounts.
As for all my old tanks fertilization (now I gotta watch what I say online here) let's say it was naturally fertilized by what happened when the fish ate
That was "all" the tricks for fertilization and substrate. No special nothing in there. Just gravel, good water and appropriate fish stock (by which I mean no tank was overcrowded) and bunch plants in all.
No CO2, no chemicals, never used non that stuff.
The only "special" thing that set my Killi tank apart from all others was the peat I used under the gravel which for one seemed to seriously boost new plants but the actual reason I had added it was to lower the KH to make it more suitable for the Killi then the tap water was.

Do you fertilize a lot?
Not a lot, in my view, but I need to or the plants would be dead. Over the past year I have been using Seachem's Flourish Comprehensive Supplement because it has what the plants require in nutrients and in the needed porportion. I was using it twice a week. I cut back to once a week, and within 1 week the larger swords began developing yellowing leaves, so I went back to twice and the new growth remained green (yellowing leaves came off, they don't recover as you know). About 3 months later, I did the same test, went down from twice to once a week. Same result, leaves starting yellowing, so went back to twice. Then knowing that Echinodorus are heavy feeders primarily through the roots, I decided to try the substrate sticks, Nutrafin's Plant-Gro to be exact, and put one next to each of the larger swords. The improved growth was phenominal. In about three months all the swords with the stick had doubled or tripled in size. Nothing else changed. I do stock the tanks heavy, and that is the source of the CO2. I then balance the light and fertilizer by trial and error. I don't have problems with algae, it is there but not excessively and I leave it. If it starts to increase, I reduce fertilizers and light porportionally.

It's all in the balance, and a number of related approaches work; the right approach for you somewhat depends upon what you want in the end, as it does for me. I'm getting the look I want and I'm content. I am a firm believer in being as natural as possible, as you clearly are, letting nature do the bulk of the work rather than my intervening with CO2 distributors, excess filters, mega light, etc. In both our cases, it clearly works.

Byron.
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