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Cristoff
02-12-2010, 11:05 PM
As many of you have read already, I was able to get a great deal on a new (Craigslist is usless around here) 135 Gallon tank.

I figured with a large tank like this that a journal would be a great and fun way to get tips from the pros, new ideas, and critiques from the people that I respect and whose opinions I value the most.

My first posting will be an equipment list with some crappy pictures I took on my phone this morning. As the tank progresses, I promise to use my daughter's Canon Rebel to take some better pics :hmm3grin2orange:

The Equipment:

1. 1 -72" (l) x 24" (h) x 18" (d) Glass tank.
2. 1 - Unfinished aquarium stand that will be stained in "Bombay Mahogany".
3. 2 - 36" T5 lights with 1 10,000k and 1 Actnic (sp) lights. These fixtures also have built in moonlight LEDs.
4. 3- AC 50 Powerheads originally to power a UGF, but will be used for water movement and prefiltering with AC's accessory filter attachments.
5. 140 Lbs of black gravel. Small rounded gravel, but bigger than sand.
6. 1 - Cascade 1500 Canister Filter I will also be using 1 - AC70 HOB filter from a smaller tank.
7. I will be using Natural driftwood and live plants eventually, but will be starting with my existing "non-live" decorations until the finances dictate the proper incorporation of live plant material and adequate lighting.

Pics:

I am in the process of painting the back Jet Black!
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/thumbs/141.jpg (http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/showphoto.php?photo=16784)http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/thumbs/107.jpg (http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/showphoto.php?photo=16783)

That's ALOT of rocks!
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/thumbs/111.jpg (http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/showphoto.php?photo=16785)

More to come!

Cristoff
02-12-2010, 11:06 PM
Some picts of the lighting set up!

Moonlights:


http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/thumbs/122.jpg (http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/showphoto.php?photo=16786)

Lights on:

http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/thumbs/132.jpg (http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/showphoto.php?photo=16787)

Cristoff
02-12-2010, 11:13 PM
The existing plan is:

1. Move my Rainbows - Boesemani and Dwarf Neons to the large tank and add to the schools of both.
2. Move the Lemon Tetras over as well as they all get along already.
3. I MAY throw the Guppies in there with them from my 29 Gal tank for some color as well.
4. Move all 3 of my BN Plecos into the big tank unless you think it's a bad idea.
5. Move my school of 6 Corys to the big tank. I may add to this school as well.
6. Move my 3 Fancy Goldies into the existing 90Gal setup that is currently housing my Rainbows.


This will free up 1 - 29 Gallon standard tank (guppy tank) and 1 - 26 Gallon Bowfront (Fancy Goldfish tank that is too small) that I found out that I hate.

Thoughts?

cichlids209
02-12-2010, 11:23 PM
AWESOME !! is all i got to say Cristoff :) looks great so far man . I reallly like the black painted background i wish i would have done that before i set mine up. It's Annoying using tape and even the sea view next time i move or get a new tank im painting it .

Cristoff
02-12-2010, 11:28 PM
Thanks Dane! I have to say I was "apprehensive" about painting it at first, but everytime I look at it I get more and more excited about it.

Now I'm thinking of doing the other tanks as well. I'll put up some better pics through this process. Space is limited until I get the tank in the house where I can rock off some better photos!

cichlids209
02-12-2010, 11:34 PM
Thanks Dane! I have to say I was "apprehensive" about painting it at first, but everytime I look at it I get more and more excited about it.

Now I'm thinking of doing the other tanks as well. I'll put up some better pics through this process. Space is limited until I get the tank in the house where I can rock off some better photos!

yea i cant wait to see more pics thumbs2: i love those lights too i have some shop lights but id love to have a t-5 set up cheapest ones i have seen were 36 inch ones from big als coralife fixtures 56 bucks each. the black gravel is sweet too . It's gonna be one heck of a tank and i think your stocking will all be happy in the 135 . you could always keep that 29 for a fry or quarantine tank .

Cristoff
02-12-2010, 11:37 PM
Agreed on the quarantine tank. I think I'll sell or gift the bowfront, but I definately will keep the 29 standard up and running for emergencies and possibly some "experiments" with live plants and such.

lowlight
02-13-2010, 01:01 AM
Nice find looks good. If it were me I would keep the guppy's in the 29 to keep the bio going since it will be running anyway. All else sounds like a plan, wish I had room for a big tank.

Cristoff
02-13-2010, 01:08 AM
Good point Lowlight - I will have to keep SOMETHING in the tank to hold the cycle. That's why I need you guys - to think of the things that I gloss over.

Taurus
02-13-2010, 01:39 AM
The existing plan is:

1. Move my Rainbows - Boesemani and Dwarf Neons to the large tank and add to the schools of both.

Thoughts?

The black background will make the colors of these beauties pop.

Keep an eye on the Cascade canister. Those things are known for leaky rings and seals. Is it new?

Great grab on the tank. :ssmile:

Cristoff
02-13-2010, 01:41 AM
The black background will make the colors of these beauties pop.

Keep an eye on the Cascade canister. Those things are known for leaky rings and seals. Is it new?

Great grab on the tank. :ssmile:

Good to know on the Cascades. It is new and I've had one running on the 90 gallon for about 8 months now. Eventually I may upgrade to something fancier, but they seem to do the job and have great "bang for the buck".

Cristoff
02-13-2010, 05:22 PM
I had to set up the lighting to check out the built in moonlighting. Here are a few pics that really don't do it Justice.

Moonlights:

http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/152.jpg


full Lighting:

http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/167.jpg

Taurus
02-13-2010, 08:45 PM
Good to know on the Cascades. It is new and I've had one running on the 90 gallon for about 8 months now. Eventually I may upgrade to something fancier, but they seem to do the job and have great "bang for the buck".

Cascades are a good bang for the buck when new. But keep an eye out for leaks in the future. There's no need to upgrade if the Cascade is working for you. LOL..if it isn't broken, don't try to fix it. :ssmile:

Are you using a sponge prefilter on the canister intake?

cichlids209
02-13-2010, 08:49 PM
How much are the cascade 1500's ? you said best bang for the buck . But the rena xp3 on DR F&S is 115 dollars shipped to your door . Cant beat that but the xp3 is rated for 175 gallons and i see the cascade is 200 gallons ..

Cristoff
02-13-2010, 08:52 PM
With the package that I bought I got the Cascade for 134.00. I think it retails for about 159.00

cichlids209
02-13-2010, 08:58 PM
oh thats pretty good deal . you have had good luck with them i think it will be just fine :) plus its not like you have cichlids so that with your ac 70 will be perfect filtration for the new tank .

bushwhacker
02-13-2010, 09:08 PM
do you plan on planting the tank?... if so the actinic bulbs should be replaced with something in the 6500K range

Cristoff
02-13-2010, 09:38 PM
Currently no on the live plants. It's an undertaking I plan for a later date.

Cristoff
02-14-2010, 06:39 PM
These are the last pics before we head forward on this project. The stand arrived last night and I popped off some quick pics of it unfinished. I plan on building a couple of shelves in two of the cabinets for equipment and leave the other one alone to fit the canister filter in.

Unfinished front:
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/172.jpg

Unfinished from the back:
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/186.jpg

I hope you are enjoying the journey as much as I am - my biggest enemy now seems to be patience...:hmm3grin2orange:

Cristoff
02-18-2010, 06:45 PM
Ok - I got a LOT of work done over my weekend (Tues - Weds).

I Finished the Cabinet - Mahogany is so beautiful
We got the tank on the cabinet - Man it was heavy!
Rearranged the furniture - It didn't get any lighter...
Loaded it up with 140 pounds of black gravel - you can call me "Sir Rinse-a-lot"
Filled it with water - Not as long as I thought it would take
Put the first 3 pieces of driftwood in it - LOTS more to go
Set up my canister filter and set up the powerheads and filtration - seeded the filter with good bacteria
Got the heater set up on and stable

Popped a few of my guppies in there this morning to keep the cycle, but they are only only going to be alone for a short time.

Here is ONE crappy pic to tide you over until I can get the decorations figured out. There is almost too much space plan out - but that is a "high-end" problem! :hmm3grin2orange:



http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/192.jpg

Taurus
02-18-2010, 06:51 PM
Oh wow! Looks great so far. thumbs2:

William
02-18-2010, 06:52 PM
Going to be fun to see how it turns out. You are of to a good start no doubt.

Cristoff
02-18-2010, 07:00 PM
Thank you both! I have to say that I'm happy as can be with the way it's currently turning out. There is still SO much more to do, but once the basics happen, the rest is the enjoyable "tinkering" that we all love to do! thumbs2:

rich311k
02-18-2010, 07:03 PM
Beautiful setup. It is going to be a winner.

Cristoff
02-18-2010, 07:04 PM
Once I get it all done Rich, Expect a plane ticket to come visit me and don't forget to bring your camera!!! :hmm3grin2orange:

Thanks!

Cristoff
02-22-2010, 06:00 PM
IT"S FRIDAY!!!! Well, actually it's Monday, but it's MY Friday!!!!

I will be heading out tomorrow morning for some more driftwood as well as for a few friends for the three amigos (my three fancy goldfish) that now inhabit my 90 gallon tank.

The kiddo took some great pics of the tank but they are too big to post, so I have her resizing them and will post them a bit later today.

Cristoff
02-22-2010, 07:01 PM
Here are a few pics as promised. A bit of touch up still to do on the stand, and please ignore the glare on the photos - in the daytime there is a ton of filtered light in the room!

http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/213.jpg

http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/311.jpg

http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/46.jpg

http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/110.jpg

Taurus
02-22-2010, 07:14 PM
Wow! Beautiful tank and stand. Outstanding work! :18:

Cristoff
02-25-2010, 08:09 PM
Well, I spent alot of time on the tank over my weekend and picked up a few more items for the decor. Here are some pics:

Full tank shot:
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/511.jpg

One of the current Driftwood. I have more soaking:
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/63.jpg

Two shots of some rocks that I picked up:
http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/78.jpg

http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/fishpictures/data/500/81.jpg

No live plants yet as the lighting isn't set up for it. As the tank "matures" and my wallet replenishes I will be looking into replacing the fake plants with real.

Cristoff
02-25-2010, 08:13 PM
Current stocking plan:

8 Boesemani Rainbows
4 Dwarf Neon Rainbows (will be upping to 8)
6 Lemon Tetras (will be upping to 10 if I can find them again)
3 BN plecos
6 Sterbai (sp) Corys
4 Botia Histrionica Loaches
8 Guppies on a VERY temporary basis!

Any suggestions OTHER than a Gourami (do not like em)

Sharkman
02-25-2010, 10:34 PM
How about 15 bosemani rainbows? Or how about some angel fish?

Cristoff
02-25-2010, 10:40 PM
I thought about upping the Boesemani and may indeed do that. I was also thinking about perhaps 6-8 of a different type of Rainbow as well.

I've never been much on Angels, but it's mainly because I have no experience with them. I may have to check them out a bit more and see if I want to go that way.

Thanks for the input! thumbs2: