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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well, the tank is the real thing but not the rest of the components. I picked up the tank from m_class last Friday. Got a pretty good deal as the front bottom trim is a bit scratched up. I'm currently still in the process of gathering all the pieces.



The plan is to use the tank back side front so the scratched up side is hidden in the back. In order to do that, I wont be able to use the bulkheads, which will need to be removed n holes plugged.

Setting this guy up is going to take some time and work, more work than anything I have set up so far (Yes, the 120g reef was bought used so it's plug n play). It's going to be a fun journey! Hope to get lot of feedback n advice from you guys. Stay tuned!

Hardwares:
Tank (m_class2g) - Fluval Studio 600 "plugged" (24"x18"x21.5")
Stand (deepRED) - Custom built black wooden
Glass tops (Coquitlam Glass) - 3 mm
Light (niku) - 24" Aquanova Quad T5HO (6700k, 10000k, Aquaflora (pink), Actinic
Filter (coworker) - XP3
CO2 (niku) - 10 lbs pressurized
Heater (binnz)- 100w submersible

Aquascape:
Style: Coastline scene
Substrate (jrock) - ADA normal
Rocks (sponsored by Meadows Landscape) - Basalt - 'Hunters stone'
Woods - (ISO) branches with moss attached
Plants - Dwarf Hairgrass & TBD

Inhabitants:
Fish - Cardinals, Ottos, German Blue Ram? Open to suggestion....
Invertebrates - Ramhorn snails, Amano Shrimps
 
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Why not just cut the bottom trim off and spin it 180?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Why not just cut the bottom trim off and spin it 180?
The trims were siliconed onto both side and bottom of the tank. I had tried taking them off but failed. Taking both front n back trims off would be a pain. Besides, I still have to find pipes n fittings for both intake and outlet.

It took me a while to remove the bulkheads but I'm glad that it's done. I have ordered a rectangular piece at Coquitlam Glass to plug up the holes, as well as 2 more thinner pieces for top cover. Hopefully they will be ready tomorrow.

 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
As for the stand, it was purchased from deepRed. The dimensions of the top is really close to the foot print of the tank. Length is 1 inch short and width is 1/2 inch too long. However, due to the design of the tank and trim, I had to replace the top in order to make it fits. I had a 3/4" thick piece cut at Rona for $8. Not bad I guess.


Old top is off


My little helper... getting the stand ready for the new top.


New top is on. Also added a corner trim to the left side of the stand.


Fitting test


2 curious guys thought that this is their new toy. :)


Stand is painted n ready to go!
 

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nice tank!!! so you are not going back to saltwater? :) If you want to keep any shrimps, I would not get GBR or any dwarf cichlids.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
nice tank!!! so you are not going back to saltwater? :) If you want to keep any shrimps, I would not get GBR or any dwarf cichlids.
Probably not for the next while. I was actually thinking about quitting the hobby n downsized to only an 8g cube. But now im about to set up the third tank. Damn MTS kicked in. Lol.

At this point, I just want to keep things simple, low maintenance (biweekly plant trimming n light fertilizing are fine) and SMALL. This is most likely going to be my biggest tank. :)

I totally forgot that they are born hunters. Thanks for reminding me. I really like the color and characteristics of rams though. But then I wish to have another tank with shrimps in it. They make the tank more interesting to look at. Gotta choose one I guess...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I was going to go with ADA rocks initally. Got bored yesterday and swang by the landscaping store 5 mins away and picked up 24 lbs of rocks (2 different types). The ones on the right side are labelled as Hunters stone!??? I couldnt find any info on the internet. They are darker in color compare to the ones on the left. They are layered and have unique shapes. They reminded me of some of the rocks I saw back in Maui. I really like them. However, when I was washing them, I noticed that there are lot of orangish markings on some of the pieces. Kind of like rusty marks. I'm not sure if they are safe to use.

After I had finished cleaning them, i soaked the 2 groups in separate buckets. Will test the pH and do some vinegar tests in several days. Hopefully they are fine. If not, I might go back to my original plan.

i
 

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The one on the left is basalt rock and it's safe for aquarium use. The one on the right I'm not sure of. But hopefully it's ok coz they look good:)
 

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If you are going to use about couple inches of sand, you could take a couple of threaded elbow and plumb the overflow and return to the back.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
The one on the left is basalt rock and it's safe for aquarium use. The one on the right I'm not sure of. But hopefully it's ok coz they look good:)
Bien, glad to hear that. Now I know at least I can use those basalt rocks. I'm going to let them soak for a few more days before I test them. I'm in no rush as the tank won't be ready until next weekend.

gklaw, that's actually a pretty good idea. I have never thought of that. That tells you how good a plumber I'm. Haha! I wouldn't trust my plumbing work anyway so I will stick with my original plan since I have already invested $10 on a piece of 6 mm thick glass. Don't want to waste it. :)

m_class, I really have to thank you for the deal. I hope this will turn out to be a pretty decent looking setup. I still haven't decided on what to keep yet but for sure this is gonna be planted.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Just picked up the glass pieces from Coquitlam Glass today. Look good... hopefully fit good too. Lol Will find out soon! Picked up the light fixture as well. It's a BNIB Aquanova Quad 4x24w T5HO fixture. Got it for a good deal. However, it is for saltwater setup so I'm going to swap out the actinic bulbs to 6500k and Flora. Any suggestion for better combination?

 

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Discussion Starter #14
These guys have done a great job. All pieces are cut to perfect dimensions!

Glass piece has been siliconed on. I will let it cured till Wednesday before leak testing the tank.

 

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Discussion Starter #15
A planted tank will look nice! Lots of room for plants to grow. Tank is nice and tall!
I will probably go with shorter plants though so it might look funny in a tall tank like this. :D Im thinking of adding some branches to the scape to make good use of the height.....

I still haven't decided on what fish to keep. A dozen of cardinal tetras for sure as my mom is currently looking after them in her 75g. They were originally bought for my 8g cube 2 months ago. I like GBR but then I won't be able to keep shrimps. I wonder if bigger Amano can survive!??? Male congo tetra, pink zebra are my other favourites. The ones with long fins are nice... I don't think I have seen them at any LFS.
 
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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Just did pH, GH and KH tests for tap water and the water which the 2 different types of rocks are submerged in since last Thursday.

Tap water: pH - 6.6 GH - 1 KH - 1
Rock 1: pH - 6.6 GH - 1 KH - 1
Rock 2: pH - 6.4 GH - 1 KH - 1

Rock 2 is the darker ones that have more details. I would love to use them but I'm concern about the orangish marks on them. PH in this bucket is actually a bit lower than tap water. Is it even possible? I was expecting a higher pH and gh if anything. ...

 

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Without seeing the rocks in person I can't be 100% certain, but I believe Bien is correct and it's basalt...all of it. I think the ones on the right are layered basalts. Should be all safe to use. I don't know what the TDS of the Coquitlam water is, but here in South Burnaby it's around 20 ppm. So a few drops of any impurity can swing the pH pretty radically. Hence the reason I always use a bit of rock which has low carbonates (Mexican bowl rock is a good one - from Northwest Landscaping) to buffer the water a bit. Depending the on the basalt, some of them will have carbonates in vugs which will also buffer the water a bit slowly.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Without seeing the rocks in person I can't be 100% certain, but I believe Bien is correct and it's basalt...all of it. I think the ones on the right are layered basalts. Should be all safe to use. I don't know what the TDS of the Coquitlam water is, but here in South Burnaby it's around 20 ppm. So a few drops of any impurity can swing the pH pretty radically. Hence the reason I always use a bit of rock which has low carbonates (Mexican bowl rock is a good one - from Northwest Landscaping) to buffer the water a bit. Depending the on the basalt, some of them will have carbonates in vugs which will also buffer the water a bit slowly.
Thanks guys! Will definitely give them a shot. I love those rocks. I had spent over an hour picking them out from the lot. Those guys thought that im crazy and the lady at the cashier told me to just take them. She didnt want to waste her time over a few bucks. Lol

As for progress, I will be filling up the tank for leak test today. Just waiting for my kid to come home n give me a hand. Can't wait....
 

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Haha..I do the same thing at Northwest Landscaping. They think I'm nuts.

Oh and I forgot to answer your query about the orange/red staining. That's just bound iron in the rocks themselves. It won't come off and is harmless. It has to do with the oxidation state of iron when the basalt solidified. The green stuff has iron too, but not in an oxidized state.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Haha..I do the same thing at Northwest Landscaping. They think I'm nuts.

Oh and I forgot to answer your query about the orange/red staining. That's just bound iron in the rocks themselves. It won't come off and is harmless. It has to do with the oxidation state of iron when the basalt solidified. The green stuff has iron too, but not in an oxidized state.
Great to know! Thanks for your professional advice. Btw, how do u know so much about these rocks? Are u a geologist!? :)
 
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