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Everything posted by dahling8

  1. If your water is naturally low in KH, your pH will likely be low too. If you fishless cycled your aquarium, the whole nitrogen cycle uses up a lot of carbonates which would naturally lower your pH too. Have you done a water change after the cycle? Do you have fish in the tank? So it is important to know what your KH and pH readings are out of the tap. Your pH readings a day later after your water has had a chance to outgas would also be useful to know too. When I use baking soda, I use enough to raise my KH to about 6 dKH, pH rises instantly once the baking soda dissolves. Your dosage will vary depending on your KH level. For me it takes 2 tablespoons in about 40 gallons of water.
  2. I love the look of acrylic tanks, but there's not much love in return! I look at it funny and scratches magically appear.
  3. With my tanks with a thin layer of sand, I paint the outside bottom of the tank a flat black. When sand does get pushed aside, it still looks quite natural and without any glare too.
  4. I'm a big fan of sand too! Not more than a half inch thick works for me, so it's quite easy to stir up and siphon the waste.
  5. No problem, I hope you can find a good fix. If you go the eggcrate route, I meant to say that the edges of the cover should just fit the inner lip of the top tank frame. On most tanks, there should be a recessed lip to hold a hood/canopy or glass top.
  6. If you are able to find some smaller pieces of white light diffusers, I call them "egg crate", they can be cut to size to fit perfectly over the edges of your aquarium with a pair of tin snips or diagonal/wire cutting pliers. They are sold in sheets at your local home hardware place i.e. Home Depot, Lowe's. You don't need that large a sheet, so maybe you might have friends and family that have pieces leftover from their diy projects. It won't help much with evaporation, but you can get creative with it and cut it to your tastes. This gives you an idea what it looks like. I still prefer glass tops, but for a fishroom, it's a less costly option. https://www.amazon.com/AMERICAN-LOUVER-Eggcrate-Louver-ALUMMIL2448-2PK/dp/B06XGZ42J3/ref=sr_1_23?crid=49SA2QUAHX2H&keywords=egg+crate+light+diffuser&qid=1567698976&s=gateway&sprefix=eggcrate+light+%2Caps%2C218&sr=8-23
  7. What kind of lights are you using? Some of the old incandescent lights casts a yellowish tint, but if the lights are good perhaps a background to take the edge of the yellow tint or some of the newer LED light strips can highlight other colours to neutralize the yellows. In some of my tropical fish tanks, I use almond leaves that release tannins in the water. Water is still clear, but it has an amber tint. I don't really notice the difference over time.
  8. Congratulations! Positive thoughts your way sent!
  9. Wow! Nice looking job, looking real solid. And...I think there should be a utility sink beside every fish tank!
  10. Unless you're using gravel or larger pebble pieces for the look, I prefer using just sand. When you stir your pebble/sand mixture when gravel vacuuming, eventually all the larger gravel bits will settle on top as the finer grains of sand trickles below. I've never had a problem with dead spots in sand. I can see it happening in deeper sand beds that are not stirred up, but I use a very thin layer of sand and stir it up every water change - no chance of sand every compacting. I paint the outside bottom of the tank black, so when viewed from the top of tank, it looks very natural. Are you growing your anubias and java fern on stones or movable objects? If you are, you can get away with a much thinner layer of sand, just enough to cover the tank bottom.
  11. Cool looking tank. Pygmaeus corys would be great if you can get them, IME much more outgoing than other dwarf corys and so darned cute. Unlike other dwarfs, they will swim bottom and mid level and not constantly hiding. I think a 15 gal tank can handle a nice shoal of ember tetras too as another option.
  12. I use to love canister filters, but I went through a few until I found a couple that i was happy with. But when you run a few too many tanks, the higher maintenance schedule starts to wear thin. I have several classic Eheims in drydock, they worked so well and so efficiently, I hope they can find some service but for the unsuspecting. lol. I shoot for denitrification in all of my tanks. Zero or near 0 nitrates between water changes. My overhead trickle filter does that, the simple good old corner box filter too for tiny tanks and my latest filters, the Better Box Filter invented and sold by Swiss Tropicals can do that too. The Better Box Filter is an improvement on the old box filters, higher media capacity, easier to clean and a good poret filter sponge on top. The nice thing with all these filters are that I can control the flow rate with air valves. HOB - are probably the most versatile of the bunch. My favourties are the are the Aquaclears and the newish Seachem Tidal Filters. Most tanks have a combination of an HOB and some sort of a sponge or box filter system.
  13. Thanks for sharing! Cute, beautiful fish. Good luck with growing out the orandas, they should be spectacular! What variants were the parents?
  14. Such a great looking tank! Nicely balanced and very healthy tank inhabitants!
  15. Maybe it was my source of crushed coral, but it was too finicky for me. It does have a shelf life, so you have to stay on top of it. But my main buffer is baking soda for goldfish, I do use Seachem Alkaline buffer for my tropical fish tanks (smaller volume). Both are good.
  16. Truly sad. All the hard work into breeding and raising your goldfish wiped out in a freak accident. Glad to hear that you will still be involved in the hobby, I hope that I may be able to see your goldfish one day.
  17. Congrats to all the winners, I am so fortunate too! ECR has such nice fish, it will be hard to choose. Thanks to ECR and Kokos for making this event fun!
  18. Completely new tank? Oh no, after all the work you have put into this one? If it is all about the goldfish, that is understandable. The internal filter and tank would probably be excellent for smaller tropical fish that would not be as messy as our little piggies. If you are looking at a new tank, it would still be workable to get the HOB filter now and have it running in your Juwel tank and it will be fully cycled and easily transferred over to your new tank. I always buy more filter than I need for a current tank, giving me the option of if I do upgrade the tank, the filter just gets transferred to the new tank with no issues and worrying about maintaining the bio cycle.
  19. It is a nice looking tank! I do like the idea of an HOB replacing the internal filter. You could probably insert more media with a good sized HOB and it will likely be easier to service it too. Is your internal filter removable? if it is you would have gained more swimming space. I cannot tell from your picture, but does your tank come with a dark background? Perhaps an HOB can be mounted on that side if there is one, and the only thing you would really notice is an intake tube and perhaps the outflow of the HOB filter.
  20. My fish enjoy bug bites too, in different sizes and formulations: https://www.fluvalaquatics.com/us/bug-bites/
  21. Wow, beautiful! Congratulations - I hope the catalog was complimentary.
  22. Softer, mineral depleted water needs a little bit more attention than our harder water friends. IME, generic crushed coral did very little to buffer my water to bring up my KH levels. Think of your water as a solvent, so certain materials will react differently at different pH levels. A goldfish breeder taught me that "generic" crushed coral or oyster shells are mostly Calcium Calcites, not very water soluable and will only begin to dissolve (adding to KH) at pH of 7.2 or less. Florida Crushed Coral and the Aragonite substrates sold by Caribsea are actually Aragonite/Oolitic Gravel/sand (sold in different sizes from sugar sand to crushed 2-5 mm pieces) and begins to dissolve at pH levels of 8.2 or less. Baking soda will bring up your pH to about 8.2 - I prefer using baking soda because I do larger water changes, up to 100% so the fish aren't subject to pH swings and the baking soda adjusts the pH very rapidly as I fill up their tank. I do throw in some aragonite sand just as another layer of insurance and the fish enjoy sifting through it. If you do smaller partial water changes, I think the Aragonite sand may be all you need for buffering. Either used on it's own or several pounds mixed in with your sand of choice - my tub is 50 gallons. Or if you're going bare bottom or don't like the look of Aragonite sand, the Caribsea Florida Crushed Coral would work fine in your filter. With the new water, the Aragonite sand will start working right away, but I would experiment to see how it reacts to your water supply. I gave up chasing pH years ago. Adjust the level of KH you need/like and let the pH adjust to that level of KH. As long as the pH doesn't drift between water changes, that should be fine.
  23. Curious - is there something magical about a 7.5 pH? Our water supply is similar - 0dKH and not much GH either, but it is very clean and a pH of 7.0 out of the tap. The same readings if aged overnight. For my tropical fish tanks, I use Seachem Alkaline Buffer and Equilibrium (plants/shrimp) to keep the values stable between water changes. For goldfish, I use enough baking soda to bring up KH to 6dKH and Repenish for GH. The baking soda raises pH to 8.2, but it's rock solid stable and doesn't move at all between water changes or if I've been on vacation for several weeks. I've sprinkled their tub with some Aragonite sand, that would also be a natural buffer but it doesn't affect the pH.
  24. I've sourced out a few Canadian distributors of Repashy products, pricing is about the same. The savings are if you are able to get them from our neighbours in the US, but bringing in fish food has ??? from border officials if they're on top of import regulations. Northern Gecko is a Canadian company that I have dealt with for Repashy a few times. One of my goldfish with SBD reacted to Solient Green, I've heard Super Green might be better for fish with SBD, so YMMV. I'm a believer in duckweed, so it would be great to get a duckweed factory growing. Where do you live, maybe I can send some out your way.
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