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Setting Up My New Tank :)


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I picked up my new ebay bargain last night, a 43.5 gallon Aqua One tank with a wet/dry hood filter and an oak stand :bounce It was only ?77 and the guy was so lovely that I also got a heater, air pump and a load of accessories with it too, plus 2 of the 3 light tubes are almost new!

Here it is now (please excuse the dog toys/beds everywhere!):

tank.jpg

Today I ordered an additional filter (to give a total of 528 gph filtration) and new media for the hood filter (sponge, floss and bio rings) so hopefully it will all come quickly!! Tonight I'll be beginning cleaning as it is a little grimy at the moment :blink:

I'll keep updating with pictures as I go along - my eventual plan is bare bottom with 2 or 3 large flat pebbles or quartz type rocks with Anubias tied to them, a light coloured background and some moss balls if I can find any :)

I just have a few questions before I get started as I'm determined to do everything right this time!

Will the Anubias require any extra care? Will normal tank lights be sufficient?

Do I need to QT plants or just dip them? I've seen mention of PP??

Will really hot water and lots of scrubbing be sufficient to remove any bacteria left on/in the tank? It's a bit grimy but not too bad and has been empty for a while now.

Will 43.5 gallons with over 10x filtration be ok for 4 telescopes or should I stick to 3? I currently only have Esme :wub:

And lastly, my tap water has a high pH of 8.2, will this be ok for plants? I've heard bogwood can lower pH?

Thanks in advance for your help :thanks

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Great looking tank! :D

I keep anubias in normal lights and it does fine apart from Mariko occasionally tearing it off the wood it's tied to.

Personally I just rinse my plants, but Buggy lost her entire tank to poisoning from her plants so it is risky. Your call. You can rinse them in a weak bleach solution I think as long as they're not already on bogwood, you'll never get the bleach out of that, it's too porous.

You can just scrub, or you can use a weak bleach solution again (might be 1:10 parts, might be 1:20), when I got my tank I just scrubbed with majorly hot water but again, it depends what's been in the tank before and you just can't tell, I might just tempt fate a lot and get lucky...

I think you'll be fine with 4 telescopes, particularly with the plants, my plants keep all my readings at zero all the time, even if I have to miss a waterchange.

I've had driftwood for nearly a year, and have never noticed a change in pH from it. Personal experience only. You will need to soak the driftwood for a minimum of a few days to stop it turning your tank brown, I found changing the water daily and scrubbing it with hot water helped with this :)

I had java ferns tied to quartz for a while, but they never really stuck to it...I eventually just tied them to pebbles and left the quartz as lumps but it depends what look you like :)

Get the strongest fishing line you can, it's a real pain when it breaks in the middle of tying something fiddley :)

This is all based on my own fish-keeping, get some other opinions obviously but it's worked for me :)

Good luck ;)

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Cute tank! Nice dog toys too!

I LOVE my anubias - I have giant ones and the nana ones - both require like NO care. I also love my java ferns - also have both extra large and extra small - and I do think that these are extra good in eating up nitrates - my tank is always 0,0,0.

I do get my plants from a store I trust that never keeps fish in the tanks with the plants - BUT i always sterilize them with 1part bleach to 9parts water for 20-30seconds. I just feel more comfortable this way - ANDDDD last time I didn't do this for a plant that was for my turtle tank it brought in planaria in the tank! :cry1 So I highly recommend sanitizing.

I have a pH of 8.4 and it is totally fine for the fish :) I don't use driftwood because I don't trust it after having heard what happened to Koko :o I do have it in the turtle tank and it always looks dirty. yuck.

I would still use bleach in the tank. I found out that with goldies - usually the longest and most painful way for you is usually the best way for them! :rofl

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Thanks guys, your advice is much appreciated :) I love that plants will help with nitrates! I really like the look of anubias, I'm hoping my lfs has some good stuff! Using bleach to clean the new tank scares me a little :wacko: How would I make sure all traces of it are removed after? I've had so many bad experiences with goldies, using anything beyond water and salt tends to give me major anxiety now!

I totally agree, longest and most painful is generally the way goldfish like it - they just love to keep us working :rofl

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I always use bleach (and I overdose by far when cleaning tanks etc! I am a little of a nut!) But if you do your cleaning with bleach - then rinse it well with warm water + dechlor. Then I always use vinegar to get any stains left from the bleach PLUS it really cleans hard water stains well. Then rinse again and it is good to go :)

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I don't like bleach for the same reason Kymie and have never used it. I actually think that you can be too careful with cleaning, and the more chemicals you add the more likely you are to have a problem. Guess I just have a different fishkeeping approach to CFG, my fish just have to deal with it, and if a problem arises then I'll deal with it then in a lot of cases. I think that if fish aren't exposed to anything, when something turns up it causes disaster, I'm not saying deliberately leave the tank dirty, but I'm not going to put toxins in it for cleaning either... My tank came with water in the bottom, algae and limescale, I just scrubbed it with a toothbrush a lot, drained it, scalded it with hot water, drained and filled it.

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I do have a piece of driftwood, and I boiled it in a big pot for nearly 2 hours, replacing the evaporated water and turning the driftwood because 2 inches of it were sticking out. It has never turned my water even the slightest yellow tint and has not affected the pH either.

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The new tank is beautiful, congrats on the great deal :) I normally use vinegar to clean and rinse really well, but after the disaster with my fancies, I cleaned excessively with bleach b/c I wanted to have no doubt that I had killed whatever killed them.

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Thanks for your help guys :) Hmm...I'm a little torn now with cleaning - I don't actually have any plain bleach (only pine scented toilet stuff?!?!) so I will have to stick to really hot water for tonight and see how I go. The tank isn't too bad, I think it's just built up some dust and grime from being sat empty for a while. I've seen an API aquarium cleaning spray before, has anyone used this?

Anyway, Esme is demanding dinner and a water change so I'll be back soon!

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I'm bleach-phobic as well. What I did with my tanks sounds very similar to devilduck. I put a tank in the bathtub and scrubbed it with really really really hot water. I used vinegar to get the hard water stains out. Then I wiped it dry, let it air-dry, and repeated the process again. No residual cooties that I'm aware of, and it's been more than a year. :)

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Oooooooo! Lovely new tank I bet you can't wait to get started on it! :krazy:

I probably did my tank all wrong, cos I was too scared to use any chemicals on it. I ended up just using VERY hot water and good ole elbow grease! It's been up and running for 9 months now so I think I did an ok job of it!

The hardest part was trying to empty it after a good scrubbing. It was SO heavy! :unsure:

Good look hun, can't wait to see pictures along the way!!! :D

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I use bleach when I want to kill whatever could for sure be lurking (for instance on plants I use a 1 part bleach to 19 parts water solution because I am paranoid), but if I know something is going to sit dry for two weeks (about the time for parasites and bacteria to die without a host) I will use PP. I have also had great success with running things through a hot cycle in the dishwasher...no soap obviously. It does a great job sterlizing large items like driftwood and plastic buckets.

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Great idea with the dishwasher Amynmitchell :)

I'm still struggling with bleach-phobia so I've ordered some potassium permanganate :) I think I'm fairly sure on the technique - add enough crystals to turn the water purple then add all media baskets, pipes etc to the tank and run for 4 hours adding more crystals if the water goes brown. Is this right? I'm pretty clumsy so I fully expect my clothes, floors and dogs to end up purple by the end of this! Haha!

Oo, my Fluval U4 internal filter arrived this morning - should I run this media free while the PP is in the tank or will it be ok as it's brand new? I'm kind of annoyed I only ordered 500g of bio rings, I think I'm going to need another box to fill my hood filter.

Will a PP dip be enough to kill any bugs on my plants when I get them or should I still use bleach? I'm thinking of getting them quite soon and leaving them in a big vase (full of water of course) in a sunny spot for a week or so - do you think they'll be ok like this? My only QT tank is currently occupied or I'd put them in there.

Sorry for all the questions! :unsure:

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Woooooo, my pp FINALLY arrived! bingo.gif

Tonight I can finally disinfect my tank and get it set up! Yay! I also picked up 3 anubias plants at the weekend and 2 moss balls - they are currently in a large vase of water waiting to be disinfected :) Oo and more excitement - my LFS has started stocking Prime! I've never been able to get it before so that's most exciting!

Current situation with the fish is as follows:

Esme has been in a 12 gallon tank for a week and a half now - non cycled filter so daily 50% water changes, ammonia has never exceeded 0.25.

2 new telescopes in a 17.5 gallon tub, again non cycled so daily 50% changes to keep ammonia below 0.25 at all times.

So now I have a dilemma re cycling the big tank - I've never done a fishless cycle and after 3 days of searching I still can't find any pure ammonia anywhere :( So I'm starting to consider cycling with Esme in there. I've always cycled with a single fish before but for some reason this time around I'm really really nervous blink.gif Esme is so so precious to me so I'm so scared of stressing her out. She's in a cycling tank at the moment with daily water changes so the ammonia has never exceeded 0.25 - if I continue to keep the ammonia so low how long will the large tank take to cycle? Will it even cycle with so little ammonia? I really want to do everything right this time around krazy.gif

Edited by Kymie
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Usually the ammonia you get it in old fashioned pharmacies and drug stores. Have you checked? I also find mine in only one store here.

I really would try doing a fishless cycle. :)

Also, do you have any Zeolite there? I find mine in the pond section of the LFS. Anyways, you can use that to zap all the ammonia in the temporary tanks. I have been using it in my temporary tanks (also waiting for fishless cycles etc) and it works really well - the ammo is always 0.

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Thanks Captain Findus Goldfish :) I can't seem to find ammonia anywhere krazy.gif I've been scouring the internet as well and so far all I've found is this - http://www.boots.com/en/Boots-Household-ammonia-500ml_923908/ - they don't sell it in store though, or at least not in the one near me. Does this look like it's pure or do you think they'll have added stuff? Maybe I should just order some and see.

If I do have to cycle with Esme, will a cycle still develop with me constantly changing out water? Great shout on the zeolite too, thanks :) I'll look for some now! Do you put it in a stocking in the tank or in the filters?

I read your mammoth fishless cycling thread earlier - makes me very nervous about getting mine going!! yikes.gif

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