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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
just found this place and i am just building my first aquarium for my daughter to enjoy. She loves all kinds of animals.

I am more into the automotive rebuilding world of muscle cars as i am working on a 1967 Dodge dart.

I am building a 50 gallon tank and i want to plant live plants for myself and add some fish for her to watch. I am a single full time dad and also work full time to pay lawyers, so i have to watch every penny I have.

The current project of the aquarium is to build an undergravel filter using pvc pipe. I also want to add areas in the bottom where i can plant in dirt on the back. I will have to draw up a blueprint for a better idea.

I already built a 25 gallon tank then decided it was too small :shock: and i also came up with a better design so i plan to sell that at some point.

I had lots of free 6mm glass and a very good solid box (out of an old store) the first tank i only had about 20 bucks invested. So i figure i can do the same thing with the bigger one.

eventually when i stock the tank i am thinking this is what i will put in it over a period of months.
3 gold gourami
8 zebra danios
5 black phantom tetra
5 bleeding heart tetra
5 tiger barbs
3 polka dot loach
4 cory catfish
Figure these are fairly cheap fish and my daughter liked the look of them. Will all these fish work together? is it a good clean up grew for these top feeders?
which ones should i start with? what plants should i start with? was thinking of the amazon sword and then was not sure after that. All these fish are stocked at petsmart but i wanted to check a few other family run petstores to see what else they had.
I still have to cycle the tank but i have not found ammonia yet to start that.

yep lots of questions on the first post ... hope it does not scare people away:lol:

Reference Team
1,573 Posts
I really think in general undergravel filter is not the way to go. I have altered plenty filters in my time but never made one..I'll see if another can assist you with better suggestions for filters.
BTW.. Great choice for bonding with your child. As a single mother of two our massive tank collection has become a major bonding point.. They are both very involved.

Good job dad!
-Agent :)

342 Posts
Welcome! I'm not a fan of undergravel filters either. Also cories do better in groups of at least six or more. They're easily one of my favorite fish and I think worthy of getting as large a school as the tank allows within reason of your other fish.

My husband is a muscle car guy too!
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