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  1. Default FINALLY Got a New (60 Gallon Again) Setup for my Goldies...Lots of Questions Now


    0 Not allowed!
    Hi, everyone!

    The more seasoned members of the forum will recall my last dilemma (it's been QUITE some time since I have posted on here; much going on including, in the wake of our last tank crack disaster, the unfortunate death of our beloved Black Lab/Aussie Shephard) which stemmed from a stocked 60 gallon fancy goldfish setup which came down with a bacterial infection through poor water quality conditions and maintenance on my part, brought about and to our attention by a new Red Cap Oranda who proceeded to exhibit aggressive tendencies and began nipping at the backsides of our Chocolate Fantail and another beautiful female Red Cap. This nipping ended up resulting in nasty, open sores on their back ends, eventually letting a bacterial infection in from the poor water, and killed them within 48 hours a piece, even with dosing with Maracyn. I was able to save the aggressive Oranda and a then new small Black Moor, who were transfered to a 10 gallon starter tank to remove them from the infected, nasty water of the 60 gallon for the purpose of recovering in fresh, clean, unaffected water.

    I stripped that infected tank down, threw out all the decor, gravel, plants, etc. but kept the two HOB filters I was running, an Aqueon QuietFlow 55 and an AquaClear 110, while ditching their old, infected media. But in the cleaning process, I mistakenly used SCALDING hot water to rinse out the debris in this tank, thinking I would kill the bacterial infection on the walls of the glass and such -- against the advice of some on this and other online help forums -- and it must have weakened the tank's seals or something because after about two or so weeks of running the newly set up tank after being cleaned out, and adding back in the Black Moor (to begin with) to start re-cycling, our home was flooded from a HUGE, jagged crack that developed in the back glass and which emptied out half the water from the 60 gallon. The water spilled onto the carpeted floor of our upstairs loft (where it was situated) and into our living room below, destroying ridiculous amounts of personal property and causing a remodeling headache with homeowners insurance that I NEVER want to experience again...

    Once the house was fixed, which took almost a month, the old cracked tank was obviously thrown out, and what we ended up with was a 10 gallon, running with just an Aqueon QuietFlow 20 and a bubble bar, stocked with the same Black Moor that survived the infection and multiple moves, plus the aggressive Red Cap Oranda who started the whole fiasco in the old tank to begin with, plus two other small fancy goldies, not particularly exotic in any way. Would you believe that almost ONE YEAR LATER, these four goldfish are STILL alive and actually getting bigger and thriving, even after being housed in a 10 gallon tank because we couldn't scrape up enough funds to get another bigger one? I did DAILY 50% water changes on this 10 gallon and dosed with Prime each time -- NOTHING else. They're still alive and doing well, and the Moor has lost most of her black scales and has become almost all gold colored, with some black in her fins...she almost looks like a Lionhead! But she's been getting much larger and much fatter, so it was obvious we had to do something...

    Fast-forward to this past Super Bowl Sunday. Being a New England fan, I wanted to see the 49ers beat the snot out of the Ravens, as the Ravens handed the Patriots their behinds in the AFC Championship IN Foxboro, so when the game wasn't going in the direction of San Francisco having a chance, I decided to bite the bullet and drive over to our local Petsmart to buy a tank we have had our eyes on for some time now as it was the very last day it was on sale for $260 something, and this included the 60 gallon Marineland aquarium, dual hoods with fluorescent lighting and a pretty nice stand; Marineland called it the "Heartland Ensemble" and it looks like this:

    60 Gallon Aquarium » Marineland® 60 Gallon Heartland Aquarium Ensemble | PetSmart

    We did not really have the money for it, but I caved anyway and after RIDICULOUS amounts of twisting and turning the stand and the tank to try and get it to fit into my four door sedan by the store's manager and a sales kid (they will not deliver) I ended up driving home with the stand in my trunk and the tank on the back seat of my car. Getting it up the stairs to our loft was a totally different problem -- it took my wife and I all our strength to drag these HEAVY pieces up our stairs and finally into position (we're putting it in the same spot our last tank was in -- I know, we're probably asking for the same crack-and-spill problem but it won't work anywhere else in our home and our handyman has reinforced the area under the floor where we wanted to put it).

    Since last Sunday, I have cleaned up the tank (NOT with scalding hot water this time!), filled it up with water to the brim when it was sitting in our garage and let it sit for 24 hours to be sure there were no leaks (there IS a crack in the dark colored sealant on one of the walls of the tank which concerns me; like a chunk has been chipped off, but it doesn't seem to be leaking even now upstairs in its permanent home), washed the natural-colored gravel we had in the last setup, poured the gravel in, got the two HOBs up and running with brand new media and hooked up the two bubble bars I was previously running to the two pumps I already had -- a Tetra Whisper 60 and a Rena Air 400. We decorated with the sparse amount of stuff we had (the newer decor I used after the last tank crashed) and filled up the tank with cold tap water. The filters started running and I started dosing with Seachem's Stability to kick-start the cycle and prepare the water for the fish's transfer (the water was also treated with Prime twice); last night, we transferred the goldfish with a container, one at a time, to the new tank, making sure the new tank was running for at least 48 hours to get to room temperature, where they're comfortable from sitting in the 10 gallon, as well to make sure Stability was running for at least two days.

    So far, there hasn't been any loss of fish (it's been about 48 hours since they're in the new tank) but MANY things are bothering me about this new setup and, of course, I have a plethora of questions regarding what my next step is...

    First of all, this Marineland tank is RIDICULOUSLY tall. On the stand, there is NO WAY I can get to the bottom of it to clean it or move decor without standing on a chair or stepstool, and that is already becoming tiresome. I would NEVER buy another tall-over-long tank ever again; my last 60 was rectangular and longish, but this one keeps a similar footprint yet puts its distribution of the water in its HEIGHT, and it's daunting to maintain. There is also a severe LEANING problem with the stand and tank, being that they're on padded carpeting, so the tank is NOT level, leaning forward a bit and making the water level impossible to even out on the surface. My question with regard to this problem is will this eventually affect cracking and loosening of seals with this tank again? Will the leaning forward (it's not "severe," but it's not really subtle) create the seals in front to crack from the pressure?

    Further -- the fluorsescent lights under the ridiculously cheap, plastic hoods provided in this package look HORRID. I don't know what it is, but my water looks green and "unhealthy" and it is NOT my water supply. It's definitely the lights. I really can't stand the way the lighting is illuminating the aquarium and the goldfish inside; even my wife says it gives her a headache when they're on and we're in the dark. The lighting in no way brings out any of the colors of our decor or the fish themselves, and it gives off like a sickly, hospital-like, cool greenish hue that's VERY offputting; I don't know what to do....if I should replace the hoods with different lighting, but we really don't have the money for that right now...any thoughts or input would be appreciated here.

    The hoods themselves feel like they're going to break off in your hand when you lift one to feed or take them off to get to the water in the tank; my two HOBs fit okay in the back after I cut the spaces for them out, but this tank is so high that I can't even see the flow of the filters' outputs when I lift the hoods or even peer over the tank on TIPPY TOES...it's ridiculous.

    Another issue I'm having since setting up this Marineland is with my air pumps and bubble wands -- I'm getting no air pressure from either of these pumps since setting them up for this tank, and it's causing very little bubble output in the bars. I am assuming it's because this tank is so tall and the water is now so deep, they're going to need more powerful pumps to feed the bars, but it seems my Rena Air 400 has gotten water into one of the output valves because I wasn't running a stop valve on it, so only one side of the outputs is working...this is causing very little bubble action to be produced. The Tetra Whisper, feeding the other bar, is also producing little to no power as there are very little bubbles coming from that bar too. Both pumps are running "bridged" with a T-bar connector so both their dual outputs are feeding one common line to get all its power to each bubble bar. I don't know what to do here, either; is this because this new tank is so deep in water depth now that I need a new pump, or new pumps? Can anyone recommend an air pump that is powerful enough to feed two bubble bars at the bottom of a very tall 60 gallon such as the Marineland I cited in the link earlier in this post?

    Finally, we get to my next step with this tank and the health of the fish -- I know many on this forum are against using products like Seachem's Stability to kick-start a cycle, but I had success with it in the past and it seems harmless to the goldies. Tomorrow will be my third day dosing with Stability, and the fish seem to be doing okay, swimming and enjoying their new added space to stretch out etc. and eating fine as well. I am experiencing cloudy water from what I assume are the bacterial colonies attempting to take hold in the tank from the Stability, but here are my questions as the new tank matures:

    Was it wise to put the goldies in so soon even with the Stability? I was under the assumption that the fish waste and its ammonia produced would be good to further start the cycle. At this point, now, what should my water change schedule look like? Being that the fish are in just 48 hours or so, should I be looking to do a water change? Or should this wait? I know this probably depends on parameter readings, but I wanted to first share with you all what I did and in what steps so you could understand my reasoning for it; the tank is dosed with Stability for three days now, and treated twice with Prime just to keep bad stuff in check. Normally, I would use Prime just when doing water changes, but I felt comfortable adding it now...

    The bottle of the Stability says fish and other aquatic life can be added at any time in a new tank when using the product so long as the treatment is finished for 7 days -- tomorrow will be the fourth day, so I am just going to continue for the 7 days and then stop using it, but should I be doing any water changes right now, or just wait until the Stability regiment is done, then begin weekly changes? Or is this ALL dependent on what the API test readings come back with?

    Is there ANYTHING else I should be doing at this point to help these fish survive the move to their bigger home in terms of chemicals, water exchanges, etc...or is it just a waiting game at this point? They were transferred into the same tap water they're used to from the 10 gallon they were in, and I DID wait 48 hours for the tank to get to the same room temperature they're used to. Was this wise? I did NOT transfer them in nets, because I think it's not the humane way, what with them not being able to breathe during those moments, and instead let them swim into a container and then swim out of it in the new tank, all on their own...was this okay?

    If anyone could lend any insight, opinion or feedback on these matters, I would greatly appreciate it; I really don't like this Marineland setup, but you know what? The fish are in a bigger home and I suppose that's all that matters. I'm NOT stripping this thing down again to return back to the store; it was a nightmare getting it home anyway because we don't have a truck.

    Thanks friends! :) *c/p*

  2. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    My apologies, moderators; this thread was accidentally posted twice...please feel free to remove one of them from the forum. Thank you.

  3. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Additionally: I am having some issues editing my original post/thread; here is the link to the Marineland tank I bought:

    http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...AvailInUS%2FNo

  4. #4

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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Wow that was quite a read. You need to get that stand level or it will cause you problems in the future. The tank could tip or break like it did before, if it is leaning far enough it could slowly slip off the stand. This isn't as big a deal with smaller tanks, but with the bigger ones it might be disastrous, and not worth the risk. Find a way to level the stand so the tank does not lean.

    I don't use air pumps in my tanks so I can't be much help there, but I wouldn't think a 60 gallon could be too deep for an air pump of the proper size to work, maybe you just need one rated for a bigger tank.

    I have not used stability, but others here have and say it works. I don't see the need for it. Water changes during cycling are your fishes best friend. To determine whether you need to do a water change or not at this point, test for ammonia and nitrites, if either is above .25ppm do a large enough water change to bring them down to that point. If the nitrates are above 20ppm, you need to do a water change to bring them down.
    When I go fishing I just place a sharp rock in the water and sit there waiting for all the dead fish to float to the top... Kingfisher
    Brutal honesty will be shown on this screen.
    I think my fish is adjusting well to the four gallon, He's laying on his side attempting to go to sleep on the bottom of the gravel.
    Tolerance is a great thing to have, so is the ability to shut up.

    I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.


  5. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Hello, mommy (that sounded a bit funny...)

    Thank you for your reply.

    Quote Originally Posted by mommy1 View Post
    Wow that was quite a read.
    I'm sorry about that; I tried to go into as much detail as I could for those who didn't know of the disaster we experienced before...

    You need to get that stand level or it will cause you problems in the future. The tank could tip or break like it did before, if it is leaning far enough it could slowly slip off the stand. This isn't as big a deal with smaller tanks, but with the bigger ones it might be disastrous, and not worth the risk. Find a way to level the stand so the tank does not lean.
    Oh no...don't tell me that...

    There is NO WAY we could get ANYTHING under this tank right now the way it is, filled to the brim with water and carrying all the weight it is...short of draining the tank and doing it that way, I couldn't do anything about leveling the stand and tank...

    It's not really leaning SEVERELY; it's on kind of a slant just from the angle being caused by the padding under our carpet (I'm assuming) -- I don't think it's leaning far enought forward that the whole thing would slide off the stand...

    I don't use air pumps in my tanks so I can't be much help there, but I wouldn't think a 60 gallon could be too deep for an air pump of the proper size to work, maybe you just need one rated for a bigger tank.
    Did you happen to take a look at the link I provided on the tank I purchased? This thing is TALL -- so much so the volume of the water seems ridiculously deep; is it possible, even remotely, that these bubble bars simply require more air pressure?

    I have not used stability, but others here have and say it works. I don't see the need for it.
    My intention with using the Stability was to be able to get the fish in this new larger tank as quickly as possible without shocking them -- thus, I dosed with Stability and let the tank run 24 to 48 hours or so to get it to the room temperature they were used to. From what I understand, Stability (and other products such as Tetra's SafeStart) allow the bacterial build up to be aided a bit.

    Water changes during cycling are your fishes best friend. To determine whether you need to do a water change or not at this point, test for ammonia and nitrites, if either is above .25ppm do a large enough water change to bring them down to that point. If the nitrates are above 20ppm, you need to do a water change to bring them down.
    I guess there's no way around this then without getting water parameter readings; I had assumed that just letting the fish add their waste product and the ammonia that would cause would be kind of enough, with the Stability, to kick-start the cycle without running daily water tests. Can I assume that the tank DOESN'T need a water change right now being that it's brand new and the fish have been in there for over 48 hours?

  6. #6

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    Can't give you any more rep, but well said! - steeler58 Thank again!! You seem to enjoy your coffee. - steeler58 Thanks for the rep!! - Compass this doesnt look like pie... not the right kind.. - Sandz for providing solid guidance to others - RiversGirl 
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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I suppose eventually the weight of the tank may level out the carpet, but honestly, I wouldn't risk it. Better a complete tear down now than another flood. Can you post a picture of the tank, then others here might be able to give you a better idea whether or not it's ok or not.

    I did look at the link, nice tank. My 65 is 2ft tall and I don't think an air pump of adequate size would have any difficulty, but like I said, I don't use them. I have a couple, but they are not in use.

    It's my understanding that stability helps to keep the water less toxic and possibly helps to move the cycle along, again, I've never used it. The ammonia the fish are producing is what will cycle the tank. It's impossible to say whether you need to do a water change now or can wait unless we know the parameters. I don't know how big your fish are now, or how much waste they produce in 48 hours. I am sure they have grown a bit since you were last here and it is quite possible for goldies to produce enough ammonia in 48 hours to require a water change. When in doubt, do a water change.
    When I go fishing I just place a sharp rock in the water and sit there waiting for all the dead fish to float to the top... Kingfisher
    Brutal honesty will be shown on this screen.
    I think my fish is adjusting well to the four gallon, He's laying on his side attempting to go to sleep on the bottom of the gravel.
    Tolerance is a great thing to have, so is the ability to shut up.

    I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.


  7. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by mommy1 View Post
    I suppose eventually the weight of the tank may level out the carpet, but honestly, I wouldn't risk it. Better a complete tear down now than another flood. Can you post a picture of the tank, then others here might be able to give you a better idea whether or not it's ok or not.
    Yes, I will attempt to take a pic of our setup so everyone can get an idea of what I am describing; quite honestly, I just looked at it again with my wife who just came home from work and we both thought it isn't leaning nearly as much as I made it out to sound in this thread...it has not moved ANY on the stand since we set it up (I can tell by just glancing at the room it had toward the front edge of the stand's surface) and the lean isn't as aggressive as I had originally thought. As for the weight of the tank leveling out the carpet, that's what I was keeping my fingers crossed for too...

    I did look at the link, nice tank. My 65 is 2ft tall and I don't think an air pump of adequate size would have any difficulty, but like I said, I don't use them. I have a couple, but they are not in use.
    Thanks; actually, though, the tank doesn't look NEARLY -- trust me -- as nice in person as it does in those photos on Petsmart's site. Did you see how the lighting and illumination look perfect and how the tank looks "professionally stocked" with those Chichlids in the image? It doesn't look anything like that once set up in an average household -- the fluorescent lighting gives off a sickly greenish hue that reminds me of a hospital ward, and the tank, even with moderately decorated aquascaping, looks open, empty and "cold."

    I tried to open one of the valves on my Rena Air 400 pump (it has dual outputs) but alas -- it STILL won't give air from that side. When I turn on that valve, the air goes completely dead, and so does the bar the pump is hooked up to. When I close that valve, leaving the other one at full output, the bubbles start up again -- REALLY weird.

    You say your 65 gallon is two feet tall; this Marineland is 57-3/4" high. Is this taller than your 65?

    It's my understanding that stability helps to keep the water less toxic and possibly helps to move the cycle along, again, I've never used it. The ammonia the fish are producing is what will cycle the tank. It's impossible to say whether you need to do a water change now or can wait unless we know the parameters. I don't know how big your fish are now, or how much waste they produce in 48 hours. I am sure they have grown a bit since you were last here and it is quite possible for goldies to produce enough ammonia in 48 hours to require a water change. When in doubt, do a water change.
    Two of the fish are pretty small; we didn't expect them, quite honestly, to even survive this long in the 10 gallon, as they were purchased as "tank companions" for the sole aggressive Red Cap that was in there initially alone -- they have since thrived (one of them has a swim bloat issue common to goldies but we're trying to combat that with pea feeding which seems to be working) and are doing okay since the move to the 60. The Black Moor, which has matured somewhat and has shed almost all of her black colored scales for gold, is bigger than them, at around medium size, and the aggressive Red Cap Oranda is about the same as the Moor, so medium sized as well. I will try to post pics of the setup.

    You say "when in doubt, do a water change," but I am concerned that doing one too quickly will simply result in opposite results than we're trying to achieve with a cycle -- that is, won't that eliminate ammonia and other needed elements to the point the cycle will be affected? Further, when doing the change, do I also need to do a deep gravel syphon right now, or should I leave that alone given the fact that the BB colonies are trying to latch on, etc?

  8. #8

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Leveling your stand is really the best thing you can do right now. You could wait for it to squash the matting down enough to make itself level, but that is a risk that I wouldn't take personally, I've had a tank break before too and I know just how much of a pain it is. Another tip that I use is to put two or three layers of decoupling mat in between the tank and the stand, spreads the weight out a little bit more, and helps it level the tank against the stand.

    I would drain the tank out to just a few gallons, scoop the fish out and place them in buckets temporarily, and get something under the stand to level it.


    The problem with your air pumps is they are pushing against too much water to get to the bottom. You should invest in a larger pump.
    Money can't buy happiness, but it sure can pay the rent.

  9. #9

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by ClinicaTerraLTD View Post
    There is NO WAY we could get ANYTHING under this tank right now the way it is, filled to the brim with water and carrying all the weight it is...short of draining the tank and doing it that way, I couldn't do anything about leveling the stand and tank... It's not really leaning SEVERELY; it's on kind of a slant just from the angle being caused by the padding under our carpet (I'm assuming) -- I don't think it's leaning far enought forward that the whole thing would slide off the stand...
    Yes you can fix it and you actually outlined the exact process. It's not likely to slide off the stand IMO but tanks are not made to have lateral stresses - much less CONSTANT lateral stress on them at all. The best reason I can give you to do soething about it is that it's simply and explicitly not what they are designed for and considering that this is sitting in the exact same spot as before it is THE likely contributing factor. You now have a good reason for the first tank cracking
    Lower the water level so that it is only visibly touching the top frame when viewed from the outside, Then take some good pics so we can see the drop/how much it is off level. This will go much farther than any description.
    Gas mileage isn't everything OIIIIIIIO
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    Having said that, Just because it's a stupid question doesn't mean that it shouldn't be asked. It's better to know.

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  10. #10

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    Exclamation


    0 Not allowed!
    After skimming the articles all I can say is do as Mommy1 says - redo it. A large piece of wood (thick enough to hold the weight) can be used to provide a stable surface for the stand on the carpet. Don't try and live with a tank that is leaning too much - besides a constant worry, it will be rally annoying to look at. The other advantage with a large flat wood panel for the support is it is then easy to shim the stand if the floor is not level. Best of luck!

    Some day I may try and read your post (many in the Northeast will have the time if they still have power!) but that is way too long for my Saturday morning!
    Joking aside - always better to provide more info than less but the old saying, a picture is worth a thousand words might really apply in your case ... lol.

    Far more seriously, your filter is uncycled so water changes of 50% to close to 100% will be required. Until you get a test kit, do at least 50% every day until you know what the ammonia, and especially the nitrites are reaching (goldfish produce a lot of waste-this explains your past issues, I'd think.) It takes longer to cycle with fish (four to six weeks) so water changes will be a fact of life. Again, good luck and keep the ammonia under 0.25 ppm and nitrite under 0.1 ppm when you can measure the water values.
    Last edited by Cermet; 02-09-2013 at 01:15 PM.

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