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Dave's 270 Litre Cube Tank

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Offline daveyng

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Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« on: April 02, 2018, 03:13:46 PM »
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Couple of pics of my Eheim 270 litre cube tank.
One pic showing some of the inhabitants and the other is a picture of how my Lily has spread across the top of the tank. I usually cut this back about once a fortnight to about 1/3 of the tanks surface. The fish like the shading.
I had to purchase a new LED lighting unit as my previous one failed. The new unit (AI Hydra 26) is primarily designed for Marine use but can be used for Planted aquaria. It's programmable via a wireless interface so I'm currently in the process of tweaking it for the plants.
It's been going for about a fortnight and the plants still seem to be growing OK.


Offline Littlefish

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2018, 03:47:33 PM »
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Looks amazing  :afro

Offline TopCookie

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2018, 07:02:26 PM »
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Looking v.good there Dave...   ;)

Offline Helen

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2018, 11:48:35 PM »
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Is your lily a Nymphaea Lotus? That is a lot of growth! What substrate / fertilisers do you use?

(wondering what my lily will be like having put a root tab under it the night before going away for a week  :yikes:)

Offline Matt

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2018, 07:04:32 AM »
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Nice :)  The cube tank gives it a lot of depth  8)

Offline fcmf

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2018, 08:26:55 AM »
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Lovely!  8)

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2018, 09:08:31 AM »
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Helen yes, the Lily is a Nymphae Lotus. For ferts I use Profito 10 ml daily, EasyCarbo 10 ml daily, Ferro 2.5 ml daily and Fosfo 2.5 ml every two days. I also use CO2 injection. The substrate consists of a layer of Tetraplant complete (2 cm) topped by a layer of JBL Manado (2-5 cm). I change water on a daily basis using 50/50 tap/RO mix (20 litres).  The water here is very hard and Nitrate is about 40 ppm, so I dilute it.
The tank has been running about 3 years.

Offline Matt

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2018, 12:36:11 PM »
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Wow, that's quite a setup @daveyng

Can I ask, did you have tanks before this with less equipment/ferts/co2 etc? Which products do you think make the most difference?

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2018, 04:21:16 PM »
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Matt, the tanks I had previously mainly contained large Cichlids and had Undergravel filtration so I didn’t bother with plants. They would have been ‘toast’.
I did, however, start my initial foray into planted tanks with a small 2’ x 1’ x 1’ tank which contained a pair of dwarf Cichlids. This had a 3-4 cm Sand substrate planted with Cabomba and Vallisneria. This flourished with very little maintenance. This was before CO2 and Ferts were available !!!! (I won’t say how long ago that was).
In my experience with the planted tank I have now, it would be difficult to single out one product as a major contributing factor. I think it’s getting the right balance of Lighting, CO2 and Ferts over time that counts. It took a while from the initial setup of the tank to stabilise the conditions. I ended up with ‘pea soup’ for about a month and numerous algae outbreaks before I got it right.

Offline Matt

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #9 on: April 04, 2018, 12:13:02 PM »
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I've never quite got my head round the finding the balance thing... but it occurs to me reading this that as I don't dose co2 (or at least not gas... I read recently that gaseous co2 dosing is about x10 more effective than liquid) that is the limiting factor so there is probably less of a balance to be found!?

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #10 on: April 04, 2018, 01:14:29 PM »
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Your probably right Matt. I was thinking more on the lines of adding CO2 requires more light to promote growth and then ferts to prevent the depletion of nutrients in the water column, hence my balance theory.

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #11 on: April 22, 2018, 04:45:27 PM »
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Just spotted a bud on my lily. Hopefully it'll surface and bloom.


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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #12 on: April 22, 2018, 10:30:26 PM »
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Nice!  8)

Offline TopCookie

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #13 on: April 22, 2018, 11:21:11 PM »
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Very nice Dave...  :)

Offline fcmf

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #14 on: April 23, 2018, 06:49:10 PM »
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Lovely.  :cheers:

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #15 on: April 24, 2018, 08:20:29 AM »
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 ;D
Very pretty.

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #16 on: June 03, 2018, 11:00:35 PM »
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In the last week I have had an outbreak of BBA on my Anubias Barteri. I have noticed that my CO2 drop checker was displaying lower readings than normal. Each morning at lights on the drop checker has been ‘blue’  (< 5 ppm) and takes an awfully long time to register any change. I usually set it up after a cylinder change and leave it. I have tweaked the CO2 level gradually and it’s now back in the green (> 20 ppm). Cylinder still has plenty of gas and the diffuser looks OK.
I have noticed that since installing the new lighting the Nymphae Lotus has gone ‘beserk’ and I’ve taken to removing copious amounts of surface leaves on a weekly basis. The leaves are also larger in size than they previously were. I can’t imagine this being the cause of a drastic fluctuation in CO2 levels though.
I have also decided to throttle the light output back by reducing the amount of light in the ‘blue’ area of the spectrum on the lighting unit. The lighting level now looks similar in intensity and colour to my previous luminaire.
As an aside the bud on the Lily wilted, although there is another bud sticking out from the surface of the water. This one will hopefully come to something.

Offline Matt

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #17 on: June 04, 2018, 11:06:13 PM »
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Well be needing some more photos if that Lilly flowers daveyng   C:-)

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #18 on: June 06, 2018, 05:28:32 PM »
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Managed to 'tweak' my CO2 levels to provide a more reasonable output. Drop checker is now green during the photoperiod. Hopefully this will disperse the BBA on the Anubias Barteri. The drop checker is still blue in the early morning so the surface agitation of the tank is still dispersing CO2 overnight. I prefer that this is the case.I I have also attached some pics of the Lily in flower.

Offline Helen

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #19 on: June 06, 2018, 06:12:20 PM »
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That lily is beautiful.

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #20 on: June 06, 2018, 07:18:42 PM »
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Wow, nice!!  :cheers:

Offline fcmf

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #21 on: June 06, 2018, 08:21:05 PM »
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Beautiful  8).

Offline TopCookie

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #22 on: June 06, 2018, 10:16:46 PM »
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That Lily flower looks fantastic Dave...  :)

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #23 on: June 07, 2018, 07:58:02 PM »
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Beautiful lily.  :cheers:

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #24 on: June 17, 2018, 10:35:33 PM »
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Came back today from a short break and noticed 3 new additions to the tank. It appears the Cardinal Tetra’s had spawned and 3 youngsters survived by hiding in dense foliage. They have managed to get to a reasonable size without being noticed even by me !!!

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #25 on: June 17, 2018, 11:44:47 PM »
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Result...!!!   :cheers:

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #26 on: June 18, 2018, 08:54:38 AM »
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Congratulations  :cheers:

Offline Sue

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #27 on: June 18, 2018, 12:09:03 PM »
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Oh wow!!!!

Fish like cardinals & neons are notoriously difficult to breed in home tanks. Well done!

Offline Lynne W

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #28 on: June 18, 2018, 06:14:21 PM »
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loving that Lily, one of my favourite water plants, and garden plants for that matter. Didn't even think about having one in a fish tank!! Maybe a step too far for me just now, still focusing on just keeping everything alive!!

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #29 on: June 21, 2018, 05:26:22 AM »
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Congrats on the new additions  ;D

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #30 on: July 04, 2018, 12:14:20 PM »
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Spotted a fearless young Diamond Tetra at the top of the tank this morning. There may be more still hiding in the undergrowth.
Also spotted my BN plec out and about so I took a snap of him too.


Offline Littlefish

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #31 on: July 04, 2018, 01:21:42 PM »
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Great to see your fish out and about.  :)

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #32 on: September 25, 2018, 04:58:40 PM »
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Few pics of the tank before and after the latest pruning sessions. I have pulled out a lot of the Crypts on the left in order to remove BBA. I have also "trimmed" off the remaining leaves as well. The Nymphae Lotus has also had a lot of surface leaves pruned.
The BN Plec has been busy excavating the front left of the tank where the Crypts originally were.
I am hoping to replace the CO2 diffuser as I am currently having problems with the level of CO2 in the tank. Hence the BBA outbreak.
I am going to try an inline diffuser with an impeller which will hopefully diffuse the gas better.

Offline Helen

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #33 on: September 25, 2018, 06:42:47 PM »
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Do I remember correctly that you have your CO2 diffuser on a timer, so that it turns off overnight? When I had a CO2 diffuser, I found turning the diffuser on and off caused BBA. Having the diffuser on a lower rate but continuously solved thw problem for me. It seemed to be that the natural daily fluctuations if CO2 weren't enough to cause BBA, but if I did anything to artificially exacerbate the variation, I'd get a BBA outbreak.

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #34 on: September 25, 2018, 11:18:09 PM »
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The answer is yes to that @Helen I do switch the CO2 off overnight and switch on 1 hour before “lights on”. As per your suggestion I will leave the CO2 on. Hopefully this will eliminate my current outbreak of BBA. I am not running the CO2 output at optimum level (according to the drop checker) but the bubble count is high, which concerns me. So I don’t intend to push the output any further. I’ll start this regime when I replace my cylinder (next couple of days).


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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #35 on: September 25, 2018, 11:42:13 PM »
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Don't forget that the drop checker can only measure unused CO2. You may find that after the trim, the CO2 appears to go up (less plant mass to use CO2, more in the water for the drop checker to measure). And when you have the CO2 on continuously, check the colour in the morning as the lights come on. That'll give you the worst case (make sure you're not oding the fish!). It'd be interesting to see if you can see a difference between morning and evening readings.

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #36 on: September 25, 2018, 11:44:08 PM »
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From what I remember, it took about a week and the BBA seemed to just suddenly be gone.

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #37 on: October 04, 2018, 11:36:38 AM »
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Latest pictures of the tank. I have just replaced the CO2 cylinder so I will keep an eye on the drop checker for a day or so before removing the timer. I hope this will then keep CO2 levels constant to prevent the BBA outbreak I currently have.
The Crypts to the left are starting to recover after the severe pruning.
I have also included a couple of pics of my large Bleeding Heart Tetra ( bit blurry). He has been with me for some years along with one other smaller individual.
 

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #38 on: October 04, 2018, 04:22:20 PM »
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 :cheers:
The tank and fish are looking great. The large bleeding heart tetra is quite stunning.  8)

Offline fcmf

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #39 on: October 04, 2018, 10:30:53 PM »
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I agree - beautiful tank and fish.
 8)

Offline daveyng

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #40 on: October 24, 2018, 04:12:06 PM »
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Latest pics of the tank before and after pruning the Nymphae Lotus. The Crypts are coming back nicely and the Java Fern on the right is having a growth spurt.
I have managed to stabilise the CO2 output and now the Drop Checker is a consistent "Lime Green" which works out about 20 mg/l.
I have also reduced the light output slightly as I think this was the main contributor to my BBA outbreak.



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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #41 on: October 24, 2018, 05:00:58 PM »
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Looking great.  8)

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Re: Dave's 270 Litre Cube tank
« Reply #42 on: October 24, 2018, 07:12:23 PM »
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Looking really good.

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