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Once upon a time at the riverbank - Final update

Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank May 2010 Update

Looks great Andy, shame it's not in full hd, it's as pretty as any of the reefs that get the HD treatment.

Are we calling the 2 x 12w experiment a failure by the way?
Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank May 2010 Update

Not a failure. I just couldn't use the 2 x 12V as a 24V. Something happening there with the circuitry :)

Inonclusive I would say. Needs trialling on a 24V setup but I can't see a problem. 7 through 1 controller on 24V will get closer to max than the 4 through 1 controller on the 12V.

Try 6 that will defo work, then try 7 and see what the difference is. I would bet each will be slightly less bright however overall you will have a little more (If you know what I mean ;) ) + 7 LEDs = better spacing than 6 (slightly)

You may notice that my 1.125WPG in that video is actually 10" above water line and 23" above substrate. It is still too bright for the camera. lol

The video was limited to 640x480 due to the web camera. The camer I will use next time can do much better :) I think. And I will convert it to MP4 and use something different to windows movie maker which seems to insist on .wmv

Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank AUGUST VIDEO UPDATE

wait until you get a 5dmk in front of it....I hope it's a clean tank Mr C :geek:

the camera isn't flattering any way shape or form
Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank AUGUST VIDEO UPDATE

Lol @ ebay cheap camera bargains. I think the firmware on this camera is a little duff. Plug into USB and the computer doesn't do anything. No 'Found new hardware' and then cannot install etc. Just nothing. Installed transfer protocol and USB driver from fujifilm site and tried several mini USB cables but there ya go. lol

So here is the silly thing. I plug it into the TV and then take pictures of the pictures on the TV with the camera phone. lol.

Should've just used the cameraphone in the first place.

First 3 pics from cameraphone taking pictures of photos from the camera on the TV:



The next 4 from the camera phone directly. These are a little yellower than reality!!!:





Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank AUGUST VIDEO UPDATE

Sorry to keep posting. lol

I am going to rip out the whole left to centre background and midground tonight. All the Crypts. Then I am going to size them and replant accordingly. Just looks a mess at the mo.

'Take out established 18 month Crypt roots' you say 'Gonna be a big mess' You say?

Watch and learn. These will be pulled up half an inch to an inch. curved scissors cut the roots. Leave the roots behind. The sand will hold the Tropica down.

Done it a fair few times before.

However with a major disturbance of a 3 year old substrate I shall be doing a fair few water changes over the next couple of days and open the windows cos it's gonna stink. lol. Good job its nice and warm at the mo.

So I won't be able to say 'I haven't done a waterchange for 10 months' anymore. It will be I've only done 1 water change in 10 months now. lol (I count all these water changes as one because it is purely to remove any nasties I am releasing from the substrate)

We are also talking circa 50 Crypt+ in that area :)

Will post up pics when done and water clear (if this card reader arrives and if the camera is any good)

Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank 125Ltr

Loving this tank, looks really lush and takes low-tech to a whole new level!

SuperColey1 said:
Of course I thought that it was normal until I got an Eheim pro II 2224 inc media for £75 delivered and brand new. When I hooked that up I knew all of the above was not normal and so for all the berating of the EOC :text-imsorry: You were all correct and I most definately was in the wrong.
Just wondered where you got the Eheim so cheap from?!
Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank AUGUST VIDEO UPDATE

August mega update - part 1

A mega update this month. Unfortunately due to my camera breaking and my new camera using xD cards I am still waiting for an adaptor so the pictures here have been taken on a Samsung camera phone.

However whilst messing about getting used to it's 'quirks' I took lots of pictures and I liked quite a few of them. Therefore this.update will be split into 3 parts. This is part 1 and will focus on some major changes I have made to the aquascape.

I have felt for a while that I needed to sort out the midground in the centre and left of the aquascape. Due to the Crypts growing where they wanted to over the last 18 months It had become a little unbalanced and after the foreground was just a mass of stems. I also thinned out the needle fern to let some light down to these areas. Finally two of the anubias have been 'shortened' and the cuttings moved elsewhere.

So no messing about. Out came all the Crypts from this rear corner. 124 in all. I would estimate this to be circa £300 worth of plants.

Once they were out of the tank I laid them out in sizes and then started to replant from the rear left corner with the largest to the midground with the smaller ones.

This was immediately followed by a 50% water change to dilute anything that came out of the 3 year old substrate from this major disturbance. This is the first water change in nearly a year. The process can be seen below.





Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank AUGUST MEGA UPDATE

August mega update - part 2

Part 2 will focus on the livestock within the tank. With the tank thinned out somewhat I can now count the fish properly. I found 3 dried out Rasboras behind the tank. They must have been there a fair while. This tallies with my count of 12.

Of the 10 Cory fry that I put in the tank the runt of the 'litter' died last month. These are a bit harder to count as they are black and also some tend to 'rest' in dark areas whilst others are buzzing around the tank and then swap places. I managed to count 7 of them but 1 is in a poor state with tatty finnage. I don't think this one will survive. The large mother is still there and looking as majestic as always. She really is a stunning fish and pretty big to boot.

The cherry shrimp colony continues to dominate this tank. There is no way of counting these as there are quite literally hundreds. I give some away but each month there are 50+ in my filter alone when I go to clean it. I don't have the heart to let them go into the sink so they go back into the tank.

The MTS are a little more under control. The shrimp see to that. The shrimp are so quick to anything edible that the MTS tend not to find enough food and therefore their colony stays at a noticeable but manageable level.








Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank AUGUST MEGA UPDATE

August mega update - part 3

Part 3 is the outcome of today's endeavours.

The aquascape is looking quite bare at this point but even with no CO2 or ferts these plants grow fast. They may be considered as slow growers by most people but I can assure you that when you know how to grow them they grow fast and pretty thick too.

The Crypts are still looking a little messy but the leaves and stems are a little contorted from their previous positions. I expect them to adjust to face the light and therefore should tidy themselves up.

There is a noticeable space in the centre midground but this should be blocked from view by the needle ferns once they grow back in.



So as the sun sets on a particularly busy day the inhabitants of 'Once upon a time at the riverbank' can look forward to some peace at last.



The mega update completed I wish you goodnight (for now)



Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank AUGUST MEGA UPDATE

amazing thread & tank, im totally inspired to try something alone these lines as crypts & java ferns are my favorite plants, but i wouldnt know where to begin to create this. thought it was gonna go pear shaped when you decided against co2 & ferts but it worked fine for you & just goes to show that a masterpiece doesn't need all the high tech gear (or water changes for that matter).

this truly is a piece of living art & you deserve massive respect.

Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank AUGUST MEGA UPDATE

Not to blow one's own trumpet but it isn't so much the 'method' alone that kept the scape alive.

Its backed up by a great setup:
Lights are adpatable to suit needs
Heavy root plants keep O pumping into the substrate
Very good substrate laid out initially
And of course experience plays a large part in that I have been using these particular types of plants now for a few years with almost no others. Over that time I've grown to know what I need to do (or don't) and not panic at certain changes with them etc.

Basically I hit upon a good balance a few years ago and have managed to maintain that balance through the transfer from full on hi tec to low tec.

Many thanks for the compliments guys. I do like this scape myself which is why I decided to 'keep it' by slowing the whole thing down (nearly a year ago.)

Hopefully you and I will be seeing the same thing (or better if I can sort out that centre midground) this time next year.

Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank AUGUST MEGA UPDATE

i've found that the only low tech tank I did, was the easiest thing i've ever done. The hardest bit was topping it up.

even with some plants that apparently love the high light, co2 and ferts program.

I just don't do 'slow' though.
Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank AUGUST MEGA UPDATE

Yeah I had a low tech tank I did for the parents for around 3 years with just soil, sand and standard Juwel T5 (the old T8 before that) lighting. Never dosed anything - tried DIY CO2 and TPN at first, but after a couple of weeks the CO2 ran out, didn't bother. Just did water changes and pulled out the masses of Sword and Crypt leaves that outgrew the tank. Wasn't particularly slow growing, especially with the T5s. Never had algae problems in this tank. Had the exact same setup I did for a local school, and you know what school kids are like with tank maintenance. After some initial algae problems and a plant wipeout due to overfeeding, it is now going strong with no additions.

Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank - September DIY pic Fr

After a full year of this tank following a no CO2, no fert and no water change routine I decided to return to CO2. This time a DIY yeast setup which failed miserably in the early days of my planted setups. However I want to see if I can have success this time with the knowledge I have gained over the past few years. I am using the Boyu inline diffuser.

The aquascape was pruned a month ago and with it still being non CO2 over the last month it hasn't grown that much. Hopefully with a succesful yeast setup it will now burst into life.

The Corys are growing well and now 5 months old. As far as I can tell 8 of the fry have survived to this stage which is a nice size alongside the one adult in this tank.








Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank - September DIY pic Fr


I am aiming now for this tank to be ready for competition early next year. Therefore I can show the full setup at the moment but soon I will not be updating with full tank shots for a while.

With this in mind I still have the same problem area, in the left to centre midground, that I have had since the start of this aquascape (19 months ago.)

To sort this area out and with very limited budget I decided to make my own 'redmoor' branches' to fit in this gap. I can then use my favourite needle fern to make the transition from the smaller Crypts to the larger ones at the rear.

Using the woodworking skills I have gained from other projects I selected some of the offcuts from a guitar neck. This is kiln dried American rock maple.

Out came a set of rasps, A plasterboard saw and sandpaper.















Re: Once upon a time at the riverbank - September DIY pic Fr

The tank's looking sweet mate. You'Ve got too much time on your hands if your making branches :lol: they look good though....stop whittling!... :lol: get it?