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Discussion Starter #1
My first tank journal!
I'm a complete newbie so this may not be all that interesting... haha
But perhaps it can be useful to future newbies. Especially when I start running into a bunch of problems! :)

First I want to say a big thanks to everyone on here! It's been so helpful to read about others' experiences and I'm so very grateful for all the advice and answers I've received. Special shout out to jhj0112, jbyoung00008, Fish rookie, Steve, Rockman, nigerian prince, Reckon, effox and 2wheelsx2 for your patience and your wisdom. :)

I got a 12g fluval edge from the very kind TigerOscar. I read all the instructions and practiced setting it up on my floor:

FE setup.jpg

I received some conflicting advice regarding cleaning up the rocks (purchased at a pet store).
At one pet store I was told "Boil them, don't bake them - baking them might make them explode."
At another pet store I was told " Bake them, don't boil them - boiling them might make them explode."

I'm not in the market for explosions so I tried what I'm going to call the UnderseaGal method: I let them sit in a bucket of really hot water, then changed the water. I repeated this about 6 times. Then I poured boiling water on them and brushed them like my life depended on it. I repeated this about 3 times. By then the water would stay clear after each rinse - I figured I was done.

I have no idea whether this is enough, but I hope so.

FE rock cleaning.jpg

Then I put in my substrate, ADA Malaya:

FE substrate.jpg

Then the rocks. I tried a fancy iwagumi style layout (thanks to battmanh for the tip!) but keep in mind I'm new at this:

FE rocks.jpg

Then it was time to fill part way before planting. I recently attended an ADA seminar and I learned this nifty trick about covering your substrate and rocks in plastic wrap before filling - worked like a charm, no cloudiness at all:

FE filling.jpg

Apparently I can only attach 5 picture per post so stay tuned for the final look in my next post!
 

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Discussion Starter #2
After setting up the rocks and filling part way I planted 3 tiny anubias. That was by far the hardest thing to do. I plan on investing in some of those long tweezer thingies for the next round of planting.

And here is the final result - for now:

FE filled.jpg

This week I'll be doing large, daily water changes to deal with the ADA releasing ammonia.
I've added some filter material from my Eclipse 6 gal tank to the Edge filter and I'm using stability to speed up cycling.

At some point during a big water change I plan on adding more anubias and a few wisterias in the back right corner.

Then at some point in the very distant future once I've exhausted all my patience and the tank is finally cycled it will be time for fish. :)
 

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My that's a sharp looking tank! :)
 

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Looks awesome great job. The rocks are a perfect fit. Im excited to see your tank in a few months. Good job!

Thanks for listening to all our advice. Everyone has there own way but the basics always stay the same. Regular water changes, grow lots of good bacteria, Test your water, dont over feed. You've asked tons of questions on here. Youre going to have a nice tank (in time :))Your well on your way. I wish I had bought Ada. It seems to be the best by far.
 

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looks good, very appealing kit
may i request a photo of the tank with the room dark
cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the nice comments, everyone!
nigerian prince - I will take a photo with a dark room and post it tonight, but I make no promises - I'm a terrible photographer (that much is obvious!).

The tank definitely needs a few more plants, so that's next (but not too many! I want to keep it simple).
I'm getting mixed info about the ADA ammonia situation, so depending on my water parameters, I may add my tiny ember tetras in there at some point.

The greater plan for down the road is more anubias, some wisterias and maybe some java fern (the one in my 6 gal is making lots and lots of babies).
As for fish: ember tetras, gold barbs, red flame dwarf gouramis, a few amano shrimp, and eventually some crystal red shrimp. I'm going for a red-orange-yellow look.

Anyone who's read my threads in the past knows that I'm bound to change my mind a million times, though. :)

Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Alright, here's a photo of my tank in a somewhat darker room (not a great pic, sorry!):
FE dark room.jpg

And a bonus photo of my beginner 6 gal:
E tank.jpg
 
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Very nice set up.. Great start on your edge tank! :)


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Looking good so far. Now all you need are some plants to make the fancy ADA substrate worthwhile. I'd offer to donate some of my extra hygrophila/vallisneria; but I suspect you're a bit far away.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the nice comments, jhj0112 and Rockman!

Rockman - yes, plants needed. Picking up a few more tonight.
Would gladly take you up on your kind offer, but as much as I love the island, it is a bit far away, as you say!
 

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A little late, but you can't cause your rocks to explode when boiling because water only gets to 100 C +/-. Baking at lower temps are safe too. But yeah, if you go 500 F there may be some rocks that could explode....but not those in your pic. :D

Nice looking tank.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the info, 2wheelsx2! I should have asked a rock expert to start with. :)
I hope the rocks will be ok with no boiling and no baking...

Off to plant some more tiny anubias.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Update on the tank, 1 week in:
- Doing daily 50-75% water changes to deal with ADA.
- Tank still sparsely planted right now with just little anubias. Will plant wisterias tomorrow. I don't want crazy plants so that'll be it for a while.
- Ammonia goes from 0.2 to 0.3 depending on the day. It's not the most reliable test kit though but if it spikes I'll see it.
- No reading on nitrites or nitrates yet. Again, terrible test kit. Will get my water tested at the LFS tomorrow.
- Water is clear most of the time. Sometimes it gets just a little bit cloudy. Goes away with water change.
- I'm being generous with Stability but as per my previous experience it doesn't seem to be doing much. It's certainly not an instant cycle!

That's the news. Not very exciting, I know!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Neat tip!

Only problem is - I'm a terrible planter (even with those long tweezers), and every time I try to stick something in the substrate I make a big mess and break some of the little ADA pebbles, which is bad.

Still worth it to make a big mess to put the wisterias in and again a second time when I pull them out?
If my 6gal is anything to go by, my problem is not to bring the ammonia down - that took almost no time, it's to get the nitrates to kick in.
 

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Just float them. Plant the ones you want permanently and leave the rest floating.

In your 6 gallons, it could have been the low stocking. Remember, no ammonia = no nitrate. Hence the dosing of nitrates and phosphates into heavily planted, high light, CO2 injected tanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Ah, yes, floating them, brilliant! Thanks!

You may be right re: low stocking. My ember tetras area really tiny.
Shouldn't be a problem in the fluval edge though if ADA leaches as much ammonia as they say it does.

Thanks again!
 

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Anuibas is a very slow growing plant, it does very little in helping you to reduce your ammonia. As Gary said just get a bunch of fast growing plants in and they will help a lot.
With your other tank you have too little ammonia to begin with due to little waste and little left over food. It is not a bad thing though as it means you are not overstocking nor overfeeding.:) I would not worry too much about the ammonia reading in your 6 gallon.
With ADA you need to be a bit more careful because it is not like eco-complete that you have in your 6 gallon; I am worried you may have an algae bloom in your Fluval. When and if it occurs don't panic, as it is normal and it is not the end of the world.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thanks for the head's up, Fish rookie.
I figured the algae bloom is a rite of passage. I'm bracing myself for it. :)
There is a lot of good information on this forum about how to get rid of it!
 
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