starting all over agan... (if ever)
If I were to start a new tank... Ideal size, stand, heating, oxygenation (if thats a word), substrate, plants, filtration, Lighting, cycling, Where to buy (online vs. offline), Just some basic thoughts from everyone would be appricated!
If I had the money this is what I would get:
75 gallon long or larger, High end Canister Filter rated 25 gallons hogher than the tank, good sturdy stand, doesn't have to be anything fancy but super strong, Eco Complete substrate. Plants: Crypts, Anubias, Bacopa, Echinodorus Tenellus, Primrose, Wisteria and whaetver looks good. Lighting, 2.2 watts per gallon of Power Compact FLourescents with a variety of Kelvin ratings ratings over 6500 with at least one 10,000K bulb, best I would say would be one with 4 bulbs. Cycle doing a fishless cycle with media (if you can get it) from an established tank and gravel from an established tank and cycle using the prawn method or straight ammonia method as explained in the sticky for cycling tanks.
I would buy the tank locally, pet smart of you can find the tanks on sale for $1 a gallon. Everything else I would find online, probably www.bigalsonline.com for most stuff and if you are a DIYer then I would go to www.ahsupply.com and order the light components and make you own fixture. Otherwise Big Als online is still one of the best places to find fixtures as is Ebay but I personally would not order a fixture from Ebay.
If you don't want to go high tech for plants the lighting can be less and you could go with a different substrate like natural gravel. If you go high tech with the lighting you will want to get pressurized CO2 for sure. a 10 lb. bottle lasts a long time and a good regulator as well as an inline diffusor either bought online or DIY.
As for the heater, an inline heater that hooks right into the canister is the best way to go and keeps more junk out of the tank. You may also want to consider a good powerhead for circulation.
Now that sounds like someones dream tank to me! thank you for your input!
Not quite my dream tank but would be the best I can imagine having room for until I win the lottery. :)
Actually me "dream" tank is a 4,000 gallon ultra long tank with pools and eddies that kinda runs like a river with a descent current that makes it almost" run" like a river with tdead spots and deep channels for slower water fish to play in. All made out of glass and so you can see through the bottom to see all the fish even when they decide to hide.
My first tank was the recommended 29g. With real plants and sand, etc. We had it about a year before we moved, and the amount of time, maintenance and struggles with the plants, as well as infighting from some of the semi-aggressive fish, meant that we didn't enjoy it as much as we put into it.
Now I have just a good old 12g Eclipse, with all the filtration, some bubblers, fake plants, driftwood. I have an amazingly beautiful assortment of fish. I clean it in a snap, and often, so it's just sparkling. It's the perfect, manageable size.
As far as expense, time, maintenance, ease of maintenance, fish selection, swimming/viewing area, well I JUST couldn't be happier. I won't be going back to a 29g, or a 55, or a 75 - or any other tank I can fit my body into.
I have... one big beautiful centerpiece fish... a school of beautiful smaller sized fish, and a harem of wonderful bottom feeding fish. What more could one ask for, in such a manageable size!
if i could start a new tank, it'd probably be like fish_4_all's idea only with black onyx sand substrate (it makes fish's colours look very good when combined with bright lighting). i hope to someday build a heavily planted ~200g tank for discus and tetras using an onyx sand substrate.
they all sound wonderfull! i would be happy with a 125 gallon. but right now that seems far off. i just got two clown plecos for my 29 gallon. they are still acclimating, i just added them about 4 hours agao. Got them at the last lfs i looked at. they were i think 6 or 7 dollars each. one is for sure a male and the other is about half an inch to an inch smaller, and i think it could be a female but im not sure at this point so i will have to wait untill it grown somemore. but im happy so far, they are very shy at the moment and havent come out of hidding yet, but i'll give them awhile to get settled in and try to make the environ as close to there natural habbitat as possibale.
You didn't elaborate on what fish you were wanting to keep or whether you wanted the tank to be planted,.... rockwork, driftwood? This would all make a difference. A 29g is the best tank for the novice to start with, in my opinion. I think that the 70/90 tank is best for most heavily aquascaped tanks because of the depth, front to back.
Depending on the fish I would be keeping, I would use reverse filtration powerheads with a ug filter (Marineland 660r's), an Emperor 400 power filter, and (2) Fluval 3+ internal power filters on a 70g tank. I, too, would use Eco-Complete substrate, if the tank were to be planted, a high calcium substrate if African cichlids were to be the inhabitants, or a dark flint gravel, if cost were going to be a problem. The canopy would be glass and a 2-tube flourescent light fixture would also be employed. I would use a extremely good, if not high end titanium submersible heater, and a high quality thermometer. A cO2 system would be used in a planted tank.
My supplier of choice would be, and is, PetSolutions. com. I have had excellent service from them and the prices are lower than BibAls. The quality of their livestock is second to none and the plants are really first class.
the topic was posted to get just some ideads on tank size, lighting, filtration, etc... thats people liked or were dreaming about. as far as fish go i like smaller ones, like guppies (although they breed entirely too much) and tetras, maybe venture bigger if i had a tank bigger than a 29 gallon.
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