Setting up a 180 Gallon tank and and new to forum - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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post #1 of 11 Old 09-17-2013, 06:34 AM Thread Starter
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Setting up a 180 Gallon tank and and new to forum

I have an empty 180 Gallon Fish tank and I am still looking at equipment for it. Any suggestions are welcomed. I can post pictures later when I get home of my current Tanks. I'm just waiting to set that up because I know my fish in my tanks are probably crowded. Also any care help or ideas on decor would be nice. I originaly thought of using sand for substrate, but figured it to require more maintance than I can provide. I liked the idea of sand but I don't know. I planned on moving all Fish i currently own into the larger tank, and would like some stocking ideas.

Last edited by Jerimiah; 09-17-2013 at 06:38 AM.
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post #2 of 11 Old 09-17-2013, 08:27 AM
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In my experience, sand is far less maintenance than gravel.

180 is a big tank - what fish do you have in the other tank that you will want to transfer to the new one? Can't help you with what else to add when we don't know what you'll be moving

125 - BGK, chanchito cichlid, pictus cats, silver dollars, palmas bichir
125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, upside down cats, spotted ctenopoma, kribensis, delhezzi bichir
2.5 - betta
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post #3 of 11 Old 09-17-2013, 09:28 AM Thread Starter
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:D Sorry, I listed it under my aquariums tab to the left by my name. I have been looking online for information on which substrate to use and saw a lot of posts that say other wise as well as my LFS, what kind of filter do you use and how do you go upon cleaning it? I use a gravel vac. would that workwith the sand as long as you dont suck up the sand?
Heres the list of fish:
1-Large Angel fish
1-Small Angel fish
1-Starry Night Eel
1-Yellow Zig-Zag Eel
2-Common Plecos
2-Gold Gouramis
1-Silver Dollar
2-Bala Sharks
1-Columbian Shark
2-VioletGoby
1-Blue Powder Gourami
4-Kuhli Loach
1-Highfin Pleco
1-Spotted Pictus Catfish
1-Clown Loach
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post #4 of 11 Old 09-17-2013, 09:44 AM
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I'm not sure that info is accessible with the app, but thanks for listing it.

I run multiple canisters on my 125s, and based on the list you provided I think it would be a good idea for you too. On my one I have an XP4 (450 GPH) and a sunsun 304 (525 GPH), and on the other I have an XP3 (350 GPH), a sunsun 303 (370 GPH) and a sunsun 302 (265 GPH).

Now for the business of stocking. I cannot offer any stocking suggestions because of your current stock list. Quite honestly, it's a poorly stocked tank. I DON'T mean that as an insult or anything - just saying that there are a lot of issues with it. While it may be "working", I am not comfortable suggesting any fish be added until the current stocking has been cleaned up.

125 - BGK, chanchito cichlid, pictus cats, silver dollars, palmas bichir
125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, upside down cats, spotted ctenopoma, kribensis, delhezzi bichir
2.5 - betta
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post #5 of 11 Old 09-17-2013, 09:52 AM Thread Starter
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Ill agree that it's poorly stocked. At the moment some are seperate. It was more of walking through the store and oh he's cool $. Some may be staying in the other tanks. They all seem to be getting along very well. Thanks for the canister list. Ill check into them. It was just something to reference on the site. I don't even have water in the tank yet. It's gonna be a while. I just like to plan ahead.
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post #6 of 11 Old 09-17-2013, 11:15 AM
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You can gravel vac sand; depending.

First, you want sand that is fairly large grained... well you want that anyway for a number of reasons, but we will focus on vaccing here.

US sieve number (mm)
Coarse #12 - #30 (1.7-0.6 mm)
Medium #20 - #50 (0.8-0.3 mm)
Fine #30 - #70 (0.6-0.2 mm)

I pulled that chart off a cement website, but it works out the same for all sands. You want grit at least ~0.5mm in size; no smaller than #40. When people tell you horror stories about sand, they had grit smaller than #40.

The other half of the equation is suction. I am assuming you have the standard 2" plastic cylinder with 1/2" hose? Gravity fed from a height of 4', you have enough suction to pull water and small particulates... and general scum, but not enough to lift the sand grains up to the hose. The sand will flow around in the 2" cylinder about 6", but none gets sucked out. You can really jam the cylinder down in the sand and get a good cleaning with little trouble.


I have never had a tank that large, so I really cannot speak well on the filtration equipment. Just try to keep the intakes at least 6" above the sand floor.
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post #7 of 11 Old 09-17-2013, 12:11 PM
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Big tanks with big fish need big filtration

Canister filters are impervious to sand. I keep my intakes an inch off the bottom.

125 - BGK, chanchito cichlid, pictus cats, silver dollars, palmas bichir
125 - cichlids (severums, bolivian rams, chocolate), rainbows ( turquoise, red), loaches (angelicus, zebra, kuhli and horseface), plecos (BN, RL and clown), denison barbs, tiretrack eel, pearl gouramis, betta
90 - Congo tetras, african knife, upside down cats, spotted ctenopoma, kribensis, delhezzi bichir
2.5 - betta

Last edited by jaysee; 09-17-2013 at 12:17 PM.
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post #8 of 11 Old 09-18-2013, 07:17 AM
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Good to know.
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post #9 of 11 Old 09-20-2013, 04:06 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, this is some pictures of my tanks. Looking at my list of fish I just don't know who to move into the 180 Gal. I'm not worried about the fish getting to big. My LFS said they would take any fish for instore credit if I wanted and a smaller replacement fish. So that doesn't concern me. I would like to get a couple more Balas, and just keep the gouramis in the original tanks, or maybe move the blue powder one into the bigger tank. The two eels and two Violet Gobys are a must move because they need more space.
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post #10 of 11 Old 09-20-2013, 04:07 PM Thread Starter
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I used to have live plants in both tanks but my fish ate them within a couple of days.
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