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bdgiese90 08-31-2012 09:09 PM

New to the forum, figured I'd post my project tank
10 Attachment(s)
Hey everybody. I'm soon to be a new fish keeper, and I am open to suggestions and/or comments.

I've spent the last 6 months working on my 29G project (veeeeeeeeeery spread out of course ;-))

I've compiled some pictures along the process and would like to share them. And of course when I checked into this sub forum, I saw the thread about Great Stuff expanding foam. I did research prior to building my tank, and read that It was chemically inert once fully dry/cured, which the x-foam in my tank had about 5.5 months to cure. I guess we will see what happens.

Anyhow, enjoy (or dont)!

Attachment 63649

This was the first round of x-foam for the base. Looks like a huge blob, I know

Attachment 63650

Carved down to shape the base.

Attachment 63651

I used paper maiche made from waterproof wood glue to kind of smooth things out. I didn't end up thinking this was a good idea in the latter stages, as the concrete built up enough to smooth over anyways.

Attachment 63652

This was a Penn Plax plant shelf I purchased from Petco (I work there, nice little bonus having discounts at my disposal :-D )

Attachment 63653

More paper maiche. Again, rather dumb idea. It did help seal up the x-foam a little bit though.

Attachment 63654

Back view of the tank after the first round of concrete (thin layer).

Attachment 63655

Front View after first second round of concrete. I like to work clean.

Attachment 63656

Side profile pre-final layer of concrete.

Attachment 63657

Final layer of concrete. I didn't work so cleanly this time since I was going to fill with water anyways. I took a toothbrush to the glass once it was full.

Attachment 63658

The finished product (for now) for concrete to cure.

My next plans are to let the concrete sit in heated (78F), still water to cure to full (or near full) hardness over the next two weeks. I then plan to do a 75% water change and start filtration. After 1 week of filtration and one more water change, I want to get my nitrate cycle started. I've read you can do this with plain, non-fragranced janitor's ammonia?

I'm planning on putting some plants and semi aggressive fish in there. Dwarf gouramis and barbs are likely. I'm also open to fish suggestions!

I'm looking forward to hear your feedback

Bacon Is Good 09-01-2012 05:07 AM

Thats awesome

dlambert 09-01-2012 09:43 AM

looks cool.. the progress pics are really interesting :) concrete may increase pH so make sure to check and take that into consideration when you're stocking.. keep posting the progress!

Reefing Madness 09-01-2012 10:06 AM

Thats pretty tight.

bdgiese90 09-01-2012 11:42 PM

Thanks for all of your feedback guys!

Turns out my neighbor's red jewels got their freak on. Now she has 20 something baby cichlids in her tank, so I'm probably going to end up with 3 or 4 of those instead of a semi-aggressive "community". Right on!

Also. With the concrete raising the pH...forgive me for being ignorant to a lot of things, but once its cured, would it actually increase alkalinity? This is my first tank, and I'm not extremely familiar with concrete in tank setups.

I'm hoping that the pH of my city water is low to offset that if that's the case..perhaps that's something that only happens in my dreams :lol:

dlambert 09-02-2012 12:47 AM

i'm not sure about concrete in tank set-ups either, i've just tested pH of concrete for my work and happen to know that it is usually alkaline, i would just keep that in mind and check it unless someone else has experience using it in an aquarium. if you are putting wood in, it will lower the pH a bit. jewels will like a low/neutral pH, but I once accidentally buffered my pH to 8+ almost instantly from 7+ and my jewel didn't even change his behavior and was fine. doubt the concrete will be an issue.

bdgiese90 09-02-2012 12:51 AM

Actually, I was planning on a huge piece of mopani. My lady also works for Petco and her store had a 20" bird tree for $4 ($3.20 with discount :-D) so hopefully that will help. I was going to throw it in there without soaking it to see if the concrete picks up any of the color.
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Bacon Is Good 09-02-2012 06:54 AM

Cichlids are good... Cichlids that are free are the best

bdgiese90 09-03-2012 10:28 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Alright guys, here's the latest development. Mopani bird tree has been added, and I think I may need a water change :shock:

Warning: This photo may be disturbing to some viewers.

Attachment 63838

Still have plans for plants, probably Anubias and some other simple plants that don't necessarily require external CO2. I know keepers that use a 2 liter bottle with a simple yeast/sugar concoction in some warm water with an airline hose running into the tank, but the stand I have an open metal stand, so it's asking for disaster between my 3 cats and dog being around. Maybe I can do a 20oz side mounted bottle and be all ghetto about it lol

jaysee 09-04-2012 07:49 AM

I would classify jewels as semi-aggressive.

I don't understand why the whole bottom is covered in concrete. Are you putting sand over top of it?

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