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Tank changes for my buddies

Discussion in 'Goldfish Conversation' started by mjfromga, Jan 16, 2016.

  1. mjfromga

    mjfromga Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2015
    Location:
    At Home
    Since Shakaho kindly helped me properly use my API test kit (I didn't realize there were TWO doses needed for Nitrate AND Ammonia) I saw that my nitrate levels were around 5 ppm. Highly acceptable of course. I recently added snails and one mysteriously died. I moved the plastic plants and the muck was unbelievable! I normally just vacuum around them.

    I did a larger WC and cleaned WAY MORE THOROUGHLY so I removed the fish and snails this time as flying muck can be an issue. The fish are perfectly fine seemingly. Anyway, I've permanently removed the plastic plants, they were just helping muck accumulate and the fish don't care about them anyway. I also slid the bubble bars BELOW the gravel surface, as a downside I noticed is that mucky food gets lodged between them and the tank wall and literally can MOLD as the fish can't get to it. Solves that issue.

    I ordered a few supposedly hardy live plants that I'm going to try and grow in their tank. Probably will fail HARD at that but will try! After I got their stuff all cleaned up and the tank settled, I put them all back in. They seem happier with the extra space, I still added their jars because they seem to actually LIKE those. Hopefully I can grasp the planted tank and never have a need for plastic plants again!

    IMG_20160116_064744.jpg

    They've got much more space now to swim and whatnot. And I tested my water after the tank settled down and I'm very happy with the results IMG_20160116_064627.jpg

    Everything right where its supposed to be and actually tested ACCURATELY thanks to help I received. Hanging right on in there as a beginner fish keeper and hope my guys like their new changes (and hope the snails do okay). I've done all I can do for now, and it took me a long time to clean all the horrid stuff but got it done. All good in fishy hood, I think.
     
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  2. Faebinder

    Faebinder Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2015
    Location:
    Hershey, PA
    My winter/hospital tank is bare bottom as others advised here. I'm happy with it cause I can see what is accumulating there. Maybe you wanna consider that? I know some feel it doesn't look as nice.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2016
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  3. shakaho

    shakaho Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2010
    Location:
    Orlando FL
    Nice tests!
     
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  4. CaliGold

    CaliGold Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2015
    Location:
    South Carolina
    Adding to what @Faebinder suggested, if you don't like the "shiny/reflective" look of a bare-bottom tank, you could paint it (from the outside of course). Although since you already have Slate, Rhonda, and the snails in the tank this would be highly impractical. So maybe if you get another tank one day, it's something to consider? :)
     
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  5. Fishheadz

    Fishheadz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Location:
    Moffat, CO.
    An alternative to Substrate or Bare Bottom, is to do a background, a similar look of substrate with the benefit of not having to clean substrate. You can buy a premade background, or make your own (much cooler) Just spray paint the exterior bottom pane of glass,( I like to shoot(paint) the exterior back pane as well). You can use any color, multiple colors, or you could even get creative and do designs, or patterns if so desired.
    i.e. If you take say some cheap plastic aquarium plants and lay them on the exterior back pane, then shoot spray paint, when you remove the fake aquarium plants, you should have a nice cutout print of the plants,(as long as you don't shoot the paint too thick), after that layer of paint dries, apply a second color of paint in the cutout print areas, this will give the look of a background. You can do something similar on the bottom, apply some aquarium gravel to the exterior side of the bottom(fairly well spread out, perhaps 50% coverage), shoot with spray paint, allow to dry, remove gravel, shoot with a second color where the gravel left cutout prints. This will give a bit of a substrate look, but have the smoothness of bare bottom. As a pro painter tip, I would use painters tape (Frog Tape) to tape off the trim, and siliconed areas on the seams as so that the spray paint does not come into contact with either, as it may deteriorate them prematurely. Using newspaper and/or tape, any surface that you do not want to be painted, should be covered, if shooting the back pane, be sure to cover the opening of the aquarium as to not get any paint overspray inside of it.

    If you ever want to change it up, or just get rid of it, everything can be scraped off with a straight razor fairly easily, though extreme care must be utilized when working near the siliconed areas of the corners. Also, the dry paint can scratch off very easily, so a bit of care must be taken moving it in and on to the stand after painting.

    An alternative to painting the aquariums glass directly would be to use thin poster board of the solid color of your liking, or you could get creative and cut out pictures from magazines glued to the thin poster board and make a crazy collage for a substrate / back pane background.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2016
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  6. mjfromga

    mjfromga Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2015
    Location:
    At Home
    Thank you, everyone. I actually LOVE the look of gravel, I'm also fully aware that I keep my gravel slightly too thick. I just prefer it that way. That's why I do two separate WC a week (25% and then a 50%) so I can make sure I vacuum the gravel well enough. Without the plastic plants, that will be more effective now. There will certainly be more tank changes in the near future. Still on the prowl for a new filter. Added a sponge to the current one to help it out!

    I actually was going to go with sand at first, except the filter says DO NOT USE WITH SAND! Bare bottom is so unsightly to me. I am hideously incompetent with paint, and it's kinda pricey here actually. I DID want a different background, because the one that is on there actually is for a ten gallon and doesn't fit! Thanks for all the suggestions, I'll try and pick one.

    I think once I get my new plants ready, I'll thin out the gravel and just remove the taped on background entirely. It looks absurd since it's too small anyway. Maybe the peach colored wall behind it won't look so bad by itself. I keep buying stuff for the tank, knowing I can't truly afford it and don't truly NEED it, but I guess I'm just having fun experimenting at this point.

    The tests were nice, thankfully. I had 5 ppm of nitrate last time, but after a giant 80-90% WC, it went down to undetectable levels. I like that its that low, but there's no way I get into a habit of extreme WC like that. I do it all by hand very carefully and it's very time consuming and water wasting. I'm very happy I came here. I'm sure I'd have botched things without help (like the test kit use!).
     
  7. Scifisarah

    Scifisarah Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2016
    Location:
    Michigan
    What kind of filter do you have that says do not use with sand? I love the Caribsea Tahitian Moon Sand I have in my tank. The food and poop just settles right on top of it and doesn't sink in and get trapped.
     
  8. mjfromga

    mjfromga Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2015
    Location:
    At Home
    IMG_20160116_195624.jpg I have no idea what kind of filter it is. I just remember seeing on the bottom or somewhere... NOT RECOMMENDED FOR SAND USE! So I went ahead with this gravel. It uses THOSE filters, so maybe that helps?
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2016
  9. joe

    joe Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2008
    Location:
    I live in Miami Florida
    You have done an excellent job with your tank and fish, do not over think this, keep things simple, you have changed the major things, enjoy your tank and fish. Your fish are beautiful
     
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  10. mjfromga

    mjfromga Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2015
    Location:
    At Home
    Next on the list is a larger filter for them! The nice lady on Craigslist also gave me these, which don't fit my filter. IMG_20160116_200605.jpg

    But I am going to get the filter that goes with it next time I get around to tank upgrades:

    http://www.wally-world.com/ip/AquaTechPower-Filter-30-60-Fish-Aquatic-Pets/10291977

    Not too costly and way better than my current filter. And since I have a 3 pack of the filters already, don't have to spend the $12 on them. Think that's the way to go.

    (We get the wally-world edit) FORGOT!
     
  11. Fishheadz

    Fishheadz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Location:
    Moffat, CO.
    .
     
  12. mjfromga

    mjfromga Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2015
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    At Home
    What I meant was everyone who sees the link knows to modify it because of the way this site edits that word. I guess that's what you typed that random period for? Idk...
     
  13. Fishheadz

    Fishheadz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Location:
    Moffat, CO.
    haha, I was actually trying to find a workaround, like embedding the URL in a text link, or attempting to find what IP address that particular site uses, I had the thought that this site would likely not recognize that, however, I have not been successful at establishing a connection for that site via IP (likely due to security on their server).

    IMHO, I'm not real sure why Fred feels the need to filter that particular text. I do recall him saying something about fear of being sued by said company. However this is America, and in America we have freedom of speech, said company can not sue an individual that runs a website, for it's members using the name of the company in context. We as a site of individuals are not trying to redirect traffic from said companies site, nor are we doing anything malicious, nor infringing on their proprietary intellectual property (name) in any way.
    The only reason I can think of, is if he actually received a cease and desist order, directly from them, or their legal team.

    On another forum that I frequent, they have opted to filter out the text of a previous forum that a large number of its members came from. (essentially a group got tired of how things were being ran at that forum, and split off and made their own forum) Instead of displaying the text, or URL, it auto changes it to "that other forum". This is an understandable filter, as they don't want their site linked to, associated with, or advertise for the former forum in any way, shape, fashion, or form.

    Although, I must say, as a user of the GFK forum, I can respect Fred's decision, it's his boat, he can sail it how he see's fit.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2016
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