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  1. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    Other then the extra tabs (which i do occasionally add) i have been doing the "oliverira" method for years without knowing it. :) That is exactly how i would prep the soil between scapes. Although it in this case had been dried and stored in the dark before cleaning and reuse. This weeks...
  2. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    I've not seen the specific filipe method. these have been dried and stored. then before reuse the "fines" extensively rinsed. Then capped with newer soils.
  3. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    It is trying.... with a single tank you would just restart and hope it goes away but the slog of having it in all the tanks, different ages, does just kick it out of you. Todays water changes on the remaining 5. The two at the end (oldest of the scapes) have run a course of GDA treatment and...
  4. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    We do have the same "tank on the hill" it's just the run from our shared stop cocks to the hall and my house is different pipes, and their internal pipework is older than mine and not used often. Hence the elevated copper, lead and zinc readings. All due to the corrosion of pipework from the...
  5. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    I've been in this property for 6 years now and did a good few scapes in the house while finishing the room outside. (note the mini landscaping rock in this may have buffered my kh for me) Happy growth... Even the first 6 months in the room were probably ok.... some interesting growth in...
  6. JohnC

    90 x 45 x 45 - All The Little Things - New Journal

    Thanks man, I've got a big thread on the algae sub forum chatting things over.
  7. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    yeah i went through the stuff on metal toxicity while narrowing down that as an option but as i mentioned the testing of the water for the room actually didn't show the same silly readings from the hall. i've done 2 and 4 of your list :)
  8. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    From the hall. Now i can actually get my supply tested for free as part of a scottish government scheme to improve private supplies to aim to get a grant to fit an acid neutraliser. But really i don't expect ours to be anywhere as high in copper/lead/zinc as the halls next door in the...
  9. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    I've actually got some analysis done for the water due to the potential of lead and copper in the supply in the community hall near by. We are on the same bit of the supply. The lab tests there were pretty scary but at the same time really only represented the addition of metals from the...
  10. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    The ph of 4 ish was recorded on a blackwater breeding project I did for Rocket Panchanx last year. I don't recall any test strip tests showing that low ph in the main room however. I do admit that i wasn't obsessively testing stuff until the last 6 months while trying to get to the bottom of...
  11. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    Alas i do enjoy Happi's posts but this must have been early on in his scaping.... by page 4 he's recounted (been corrected on APF) the idea that NO3 is converted to NH4 by bacteria that are not present enough in low ph tanks. Thought that sounded a little bit too elegant. Certainly think my low...
  12. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    Certainly the amount of GDA that occurs is almost directly proportional to the level of fert dosing (ie NO3) but obviously in my case this is also somewhat dictated by the energy and fert needs of each tank.
  13. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    I think i've skim read this one and chatted to Tom B about it before. This does ring true - ". i also discovered low PH water is Prone to GDA when using EI dosing, why? because when using KNO3, Bacteria have to convert NO3 back to NH4 for the plants, plants are normally covered with Bacteria...
  14. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    about 6.4 but no natural hardness. i reminerlize with TNC GH booster and seachem alkaline buffer for KH. Aiming for 5 dGH and about 3 dKH currently. Although that was all over the place a few months back.
  15. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    Indeed. They are mounted deliberately higher and then dialled down. With the PAR meter used to check for dark spots. Thanks man, It is actually only that single tank that is hardscape heavy which also runs pretty low light and lean ferts. The rest of 90 - 100% planted. I've leaned away from...
  16. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    Thanks man, Alas it now makes me somewhat sad going in there. Hopefully soon i'll perk up a bit. I'm going to shift to emersed growth and riparium set ups for a change. Hopefully the lower energy/plant mass in the water and associated water column dosing will not recreate the same diatom and...
  17. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    Alas it looked it's best back then and plant health has been declining for the reasons above since that time. In various tanks at certain times.
  18. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    Thanks replies so far guys, alas i'm not sure any "golden bullet" answers so far. I have kind of gone through everything i can think of in the last year trying to nail this. I'm a little rushed just now for more specific answers but here is a photo of the room last March. Before I filled a...
  19. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    silicate test for freshwater comes out at low levels i tried using water from my dehumidifier in a tank for a while to see if it would help.... alas no.
  20. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    generally i've turned most of the kessils down and mounted them high. I've got a PAR meter and the worst tanks are split both high and low end. 35 - 80ish mols. Admittedly there are lots of lights in the same room and there was some differences in the timers on the different wall runs. Amended...
  21. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    Possibly, but i've also addressed the flow in the lower flow tanks with additional powerheads and pumps. Still diatoms. In one tank they started off on the Bolbitis which was directly in the flow from a 1800 lph filter in a 150L tank! Another thing i'd been chasing around recently is that I...
  22. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    The gravel vaccing was increased as a response to the diatoms tbh. I instigated some deeper cleans of the older aquasoils too. Which were recommended tbh by experts and i've done with sucess in the past too. Because it's effecting all the tanks to some degree I was trying to cover all room...
  23. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    Hi man, Long time no speak. :) Don't think the overdosing of Mg would be a problem. I'd agree that it hadn't caused an issue as such as Mg isn't going to hurt the plants/fish etc but I ended up with readings of dGH of 10+ in cases with dKH 0/1.... I did plenty of reading around and chatted to...
  24. JohnC

    Persistent Diatoms in Mature Tanks & GDA

    Hi Folks, It's taken me a while to come query this online as i've been trying to get to the bottom of it myself for the last year. This post is to tap into anyone's experience of similar or opinions on base causes. As you may notice from my sig and possibly remember me i'm somewhat of an old...
  25. JohnC

    90 x 45 x 45 - All The Little Things - New Journal

    Hiya, I am actually just back after a long hiatus posting here. not in the best way tbh, i'm about to knock high tech/energy on the head due to ongoing issues with the many scapes I run at home probably stemming from my spring water. Just not feeling the joy I got from scaping like I used too...
  26. JohnC

    GDA - observations

    Hi man, Any updates with your journey through this? I'm coming back to the forum to detail my issues with GDA on multiple tanks and found your thread. I'm a bit short of time to fully go into it now but i'm also coming from a spring water remineralised angle. I'd also been massively overdoing...
  27. JohnC

    Affordable but good quality tanks

    Valid point :) In the end i'm looking at 10+ tanks so with the extra leds and kit this is going to be pricey. If the differnce between the upper end and lower end but basically the same opti white, ada style is 100's per tank i'm going to go with the cheapest :)
  28. JohnC

    Affordable but good quality tanks

    Hiya, What are the latest opinions of affordable tanks of good quality silicon work, braceless, optiwhite etc? Preferably the ADA clones that are popping up from all the different manufacturers. I've got a fair number of new scapes planned and am looking to balance off the shelf 60cm & 90cm...
  29. JohnC

    New LED suggestions for a 60cm

    I'm pretty sure they have these in my local shop. i'll check the price point but feel it will quickly escalate :) Grobeam's always put me off as most of the TMC range seems to have been hit with an unnecessary plastic ugly stick (with the exception of the aquabars RIP) I've read a bit about...
  30. JohnC

    New LED suggestions for a 60cm

    I got a current USA planted+ pro instead of a finnex when researching for my 90cm as id read about the issues and hot running. I could possibly look back that way. but i'm suffering a bit from light distribution on that tank with the single strip source being on top of the tank rather then a...
  31. JohnC

    New LED suggestions for a 60cm

    Hey hey, The eternal question once more. What light unit for another 60cm in the house? Currently i'm running two sets of Aquabars (one white one colour) on the other two but now I've found out that TMC are no longer making Aquabars and the supply around the place seems to be drying up I'm...
  32. JohnC

    Eye of Cthulhu

    :)
  33. JohnC

    Brighid Sleeps

    Different types tbh. Sometimes I used tropica, sometimes the TNC complete. Sometimes DIY ones i've mixed myself. If i had to pick my preference i'd buy more TNC Complete. I also have tap water that is basically RO now and reminerlize with a GH/KH booster.
  34. JohnC

    Brighid Sleeps

    Hey Konrad 3ml all in one per day. 50% water change once a week. Aquasoil was new from the start of the tank. although by the point of the photos the rear planting was actually mostly detached from it in a low mound. :)
  35. JohnC

    LED Fire Scape

    ooooft :)
  36. JohnC

    My mini mountain

    yup.totally love it. I've actually got a literal pile of vases and candle holders i've been meaning to do this in. you have just motivated me to get on it. :)
  37. JohnC

    Glumag o Clabar - new tank!

    re:Bolbitis you will probably find the leaves will go a little grotty as the newer growth suited to you parameters comes in. Snip them off at the rhizome. I find it always wants to slowly dump older leaves when changing water conditions and like Darrel says the low tech leaves will be smaller.
  38. JohnC

    Forest Dreams - The fairy tale continues...

    Very cool. loving the shapes. I've been musing over Ceratopteris Thalictroides for my Little Things scape as a solution of my dislike of stems in the background.
  39. JohnC

    Suggestion Signature Limits

    Hi, I was just going to update my signature links and the forum is now telling me I can only have 5 lines and links. For an old timer like me with many scapes and journals that is pretty limiting :) Any chance the cap could be upped? :) (or i can just bite the bullet and erase the links to...
  40. JohnC

    90 x 45 x 45 - All The Little Things - New Journal

    Thanks man, But as ever lets see how it develops. 8) re: the light, I was designing the scape knowing the angle would cause shadows, it's just a little more pronounced then I initially thought. I'm musing over switching out for a couple of Aquabars so that the dual strips spread the light a...
  41. JohnC

    90 x 45 x 45 - All The Little Things - New Journal

    Hi, So slack on updating. Photos. With the sand in. Still need the smaller stones. Planting More Planting Planted :) Another view Then some from 5 weeks in once the rocks were off and things are growing in. ------------------------------ Still a lot to do. The light is great...
  42. JohnC

    LED Fire Scape

    :)
  43. JohnC

    Liquid ferts causing my high nitrate?

    happen to have a photo? I'm wondering if your CO2 is bottoming out and stopping plant growth/absorption. But frankly you are not putting THAT much ferts in. Just standard doses. Not very many demanding plants there also. Depending on how heavily planted (photo :) ) you could get away with a...
  44. JohnC

    Liquid ferts causing my high nitrate?

    Hi, How much are you putting in (and tank size)? How often are you water changing? What are you lights? Do you use Co2? How planted is the tank? What substrate? How heavily stocked in the tank currently? erm..... i think that's all the questions people will ask. Best Regards, John
  45. JohnC

    Dosing Bottle Sterilisation

    That will effect it but i get the same effect on bottles that don't see the light of day and those that actually sit in windows.
  46. JohnC

    Dosing Bottle Sterilisation

    Yup. They are in the recipe.
  47. JohnC

    Dosing Bottle Sterilisation

    That stuff at the bottom rings a bell. :) My first instinct was the recipe was very exact and due to my scales only reading to one decimal point i may be unbalancing the mix. but since then i've gone back through and read the full info again and spoken to nigel and the composition being...
  48. JohnC

    Dosing Bottle Sterilisation

    Still a fan of Jame's all in one DIY. But my mixes always seem to go cloudy after a month or so..... The discussion with Nigel actually focuses more on the compositions of the different traces and relative balance of the liquid there of but actually what I got out of it was a reminder that I...
  49. JohnC

    Dosing Bottle Sterilisation

    Hi, After a discussion with Nigel from The Nutrient Company about my all in one solution going cloudy I'm going to put a bit more effort into sterilising the dosing bottles I store it in. How do you sterilise yours? Best Regards, John
  50. JohnC

    Who's coming to the UKAPS Aquascaping Experience 2016?

    Pondering it.☺ You are coming to Scotland first thou George Will see you there/here
  51. JohnC

    90 x 45 x 45 - All The Little Things - New Journal

    It's a little easier collecting in summer :) I'll post the photos from set up and current later this week. Xmas has been a touch hectic. :)
  52. JohnC

    Moss on wood

    my love of moss always amazes my girlfriend. :)
  53. JohnC

    Hello from Scotland

    hiya <- also in scotland
  54. JohnC

    Algae busting some rare fissidens..

    what is this magic you put before me!!?! are you in league with the moss satan! :)
  55. JohnC

    Algae busting some rare fissidens..

    These are tiny tiny species so cuttings is kind of hard. and manually removing bba etc will probably remove a fair amount of the growth hidden within.
  56. JohnC

    Algae busting some rare fissidens..

    I was actually planning on moving the fish out of the tank it's in anyway now the big tank is up and running so I'll give it a shot. It's been a long while since i've od'ed easy carbo. shall i just run 3.5x until it clears up or a week? It may be impossible to split some of the types as the...
  57. JohnC

    Algae busting some rare fissidens..

    Hey hey, Due to some bad maintenance a while back some rare fissidens types I've been nurturing have ended up with a variety of algae on them. I've only got tiny amounts of each but I really want to dip/treat the whole branch but am very uncertain of which method to use to avoid accidentally...
  58. JohnC

    90 x 45 x 45 - All The Little Things - New Journal

    Hi all, A little update, things moving along. I am going to prune out the vertical branch on the far left and possibly the other one near it as it will obstruct the lid. Sand to add in the foreground. Possibly moving the left branch inwards a touch. Kicking myself a touch for not picking...
  59. JohnC

    60cm dry start...

    looks ace. you seem to have some fossilized brains as hardscape. :)
  60. JohnC

    Feedback A positive experience with CO2art

    I've actually had 4 (i think) only one was leaking. So I wouldn't be prepared to say there is a flaw. I'd say give them another chance man. It seems like you may have just had a bad warehouse packer, or string of bad luck. Out of all the companies I deal with i'd actually rate CO2art as one of...
  61. JohnC

    Feedback A positive experience with CO2art

    Ah mate that sounds like you are getting some very bad luck with Co2Art. My experiences with them have been nothing but the opposite. I've actually bought 20 - 30 + items from them in the past and some have had or developed problems. Including one of the reg's you mention, with leaks. The return...
  62. JohnC

    90 x 45 x 45 - All The Little Things - New Journal

    Wood pondering.... 1 2 3 4 Going to have to chop some branches to get the final fit. lots of rouge limbs stopping easy adjustment. plus im going to have a closed top. Opinions welcome. Cheers, John
  63. JohnC

    which diffuser/ atomizer/ reactor?

    In a fan of inline and bazooka types but hey, ive never tried the tropica :) I may now seeing on how many other people are. :)
  64. JohnC

    90 x 45 x 45 - All The Little Things - New Journal

    Just make sure to give em a rinse before hand. last time i did this there was sand and grit coming through for the next 6 months. :)
  65. JohnC

    Best custom aquarium manufacturer?

    I was really impressed with ND aquatics last custom tank I got made, price and quality. I wasn't an optiwhite but the silicone was perfect. The clearseal edgeline was a touch underwhelming. I could be wrong but i think some people were having issues with AML and delivery. (apologies if i have...
  66. JohnC

    90 x 45 x 45 - All The Little Things - New Journal

    It really was amazing. We stayed most of the time in the rainforest. I really wish id taken an underwater camera with me. The rivers were so clear. When I finally have the wood soaked it will sink happily. I've not settled on the final positions yet but as long as I have a central "clearing...
  67. JohnC

    Twinstar..what is it?

    I can't really see why there would be an issue with overdosing, ie overspec. I imagine thou underspec would negate the effect through the tank. But hey, fuzzy science. :) The cheap Hong kong knock off seems to give better scope of using it on small to medium tanks with 3 modes rather then 2. I...
  68. JohnC

    Twinstar..what is it?

    Any issue with using a version that is larger tank spec recommendation on a smaller tank? (i'm thinking of getting one and moving it around between a 60 and a 150L) Is there much difference in the size of the unit in the tank?
  69. JohnC

    Cant clean up green water

    beyond the water changes mentioned above you could also try a small internal UV filter for the duration of the outbreak. I always keep one handy in the rare circumstance that I get a green water algae issue and don't want to black out the tank. Best Regards, John
  70. JohnC

    Malachite Green stain in carpet...

    I'm wondering what other stains i can remove with the hydrogen peroxide :) good tip.
  71. JohnC

    90 x 45 x 45 - All The Little Things - New Journal

    They say it is. I'm not 100% convinced. It has more of a green tint then my other opti but i've also been told in the past it can vary from tank to tank. In fact of the three 30cm cube opti's i have one is much more green then the others. Quality wise the work was good but not 100%. The first...
  72. JohnC

    90 x 45 x 45 - All The Little Things - New Journal

    Hi, So things are finally at the stage of setting up my clearseal 90 edgeline tank. This thing has been sitting in the living room since march unused for anything other then a plant holding tank. It's also taken a ridiculous amount of time to collect the equipment i wanted. But thankfully its...
  73. JohnC

    Weeping moss – Rock-Lava-Unzan

    Weeping, in my experience is one of the types that tended to come loose when it grew denser. I did superglue mine last time i did it on rock. Probably due to it's natural shading as it layers on top of each other. Tieing it on will probably give it a much better footing in the long term thou.
  74. JohnC

    30cm Cube - Dwarf Puffer Tank - New Journal!

    Thanks! There is the whole top section that i've not photographed yet too. The dark areas are also very under exposed on the photos above, they are actually a warren of wood tunnels and caves for the puffers to emerge from. :)
  75. JohnC

    30cm Cube - Dwarf Puffer Tank - New Journal!

    Thanks! From my reading on puffers the water volume is the right size for a few (especially with the extra big filter) but you need to either made sure you have the sexing right. Which is the tricky part as the sex of the first one we got wasn't very clear. The Males are meant to have a...
  76. JohnC

    30cm Cube - Dwarf Puffer Tank - New Journal!

    Hi Everyone, It's been years since i've journalled properly here, so as promised here is the first of my new batch. I've been busy as hell with work and moving house 8 months ago (and again a year and a half before that) that i'd had little time or space for bigger in house tanks. Brighid...
  77. JohnC

    Flexi-M Mini LED

    Nice. completely missed it in the search. It does look lovely. :)
  78. JohnC

    Flexi-M Mini LED

    Thanks for the replies guys. still pondering. Two of the cubes are suffering a bit with too higher light plants in with the eheim PowerLED's. The dwarf puffer tank has been set up as low light/hybrid and is doing great (journal starting some time soon).
  79. JohnC

    Flexi-M Mini LED

    I'm looking at it as a replacement/slight upgrade to the eheim power LED's i use on my 30cm cubes. From the PAR readings it doesnt really look like a great mid to high light lamp as the photos of the scapes they are using to advertise it indicate. Although they possibly could be more shallow...
  80. JohnC

    Flexi-M Mini LED

    Hi, I'd actually dismissed this lamp after skim reading else where it wasn't up to much. But i'm seeing more advertising with it over what I would call higher energy scapes. Not seeing much discussion here on it. Anyone using one? Impressions? Found some tech details on The Aquatic Plant...
  81. JohnC

    Brighid Sleeps

    Indeed. They do settle in ok however, with plenty of displays of courting and such like. I've also made sure I had a decent ratio of females to males. Other then the alarm they show when you access the tank they generally act pretty chilled and are always on display or in central areas. :)
  82. JohnC

    Brighid Sleeps

    I'm not familiar with the term pump their gills? i've not noticed them "heavy breathing" as such. They have been fun but i'd not consider them for another planted tank of this size or minimal scape I think. They are very skittish. As soon as I put my hand in the tank they shoot off at high...
  83. JohnC

    Glass Lids

    i;m busy nudging my metal worker lodger into making me some metal hooks. i'm so reluctant to pay ADA another 10 quid for 4.
  84. JohnC

    Glass Lids

    :)
  85. JohnC

    Please share your successful longerterm tank...

    All my tanks (see sig) have been run long term. Some are onto their 3 or 4 year... I've only really had to break one down as the kit did not live up to my expectations of the hardscape i wanted (T5's in the hood meant that the light was always too bright for the hardscape set up). Assess what...
  86. JohnC

    Glass Lids

    So... Glass lids, what thickness have people leaned to in the past. My last couple of DIY ones were 6mm laminated safety glass, mainly because the ex had a cat that kept jumping on it and i wanted to make sure she wouldnt go through. I think i could go thinner without the lamination. The...
  87. JohnC

    Tropical Bay

    excellent transformation from the first planting to the final shot. really enjoyed that. did you scrub the rocks at all when you added the twinstar? the use of easy carbo once a week i wouldn't put the cleaning down too. it is only really active for 24 hours as far as i knew.... if this is...
  88. JohnC

    The other halves 60...

    is that not an insanely high amount of light!! how long for? Cudos to your partner for keeping on top of the maintenance... looks great. I really want to try that eriocaulon cinereum but i don't think my current USA planted + pro light will give out enough energy for it to grow well (about 50...
  89. JohnC

    Brighid Sleeps

    I'll journal the lot with photos. After a gap for moving north and buying this new place after renting it's about time i gave something back to UKAPS again :) I will aim to take some photos of the puffer tank this week at least. :)
  90. JohnC

    Brighid Sleeps

    Still ticking along. i've actually let it grow WAY big on the mounds. it's amazing how large monte carlo can get and still be green underneath. i'm planning on rescaping the tank once i've set up the cleanseal edgeline 90 in the sitting room. I've also done a 30cm cube puffer tank that i'll...
  91. JohnC

    Good places to buy hardscape rock?

    indeed. ive just been lazy in the oast and part of my thinking of moving to the highlands was actually to have the hardscape and inspiration for scapes all around me. plus i've got three years of university geology modules behind me a long time ago. :) I'll post photos of my finds here.
  92. JohnC

    Good places to buy hardscape rock?

    we really do have a poor selection in the uk. even the lists i've pawed through at my LFS from the main distributers mostly show the interesting stuff beyond seiryu clones and dragon as out of stock. i'm doing some local foraging about this area over the next few days. one of the perks of living...
  93. JohnC

    Be Plant Wise - Disposal of aquatic plants

    i've recently moved to a house up in the highlands with a septic tank that has a seep away into a small burn. that burn flows into a wider road drainage system which at some point ends up in a local river as far as i know (we are ten miles away from any large town). it's made me double up my...
  94. JohnC

    The Edible Planted Tank

    Limnophila aromatica is a great plant. used that in my first scapes years ago.
  95. JohnC

    The Edible Planted Tank

    Someone was telling me about a midgie blasting machine that collected the dead ones in a sack which he then made (and sold) midgie burgers from at a festival up here..... :)
  96. JohnC

    The Edible Planted Tank

    Maybe i could just keep the scape for emergencies...... aquascaping for the zombie apocalypse.... :) with cherry shrimp to garnish my aquascaping salad.
  97. JohnC

    The Edible Planted Tank

    having just dealt with my first white spot outbreak in 15 years of fish keeping (don't know how i managed to last that long) i've got no desire to catch that or any other aquarium nasties ;) cheers for pointing that out. :)
  98. JohnC

    The Edible Planted Tank

    i've got so much blyxa at the mo.... But now i'm being put off by the parasites and bacteria chat...... :(
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