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US 55 gallon tank build

Dan Knowlton

New Member
Joined
9 Mar 2021
Messages
3
Location
Florida
I just joined the forum and have been looking at the tank journals and have been very impressed. Due to Wife constraints I am not able to build the 60 gallon cube that I wanted so I am using a salvaged 55.

I have a 20 gallon tank in my man cave/music room upstairs but really wanted a larger tank in the family room. Pics will show why it was almost free!

Nice weather for working on the tank outside - sunny, 23 Celsius and little wind.

CRUSTY tank!

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Barkeeper's Friend worked wonders although there is still some gunk on the glass in a couple areas. I'll keep working on it!

Crusty stand!

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Sanding is done, primer and painting is next!

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All the equipment is in - 29 gallon tank for the sump, Poret foam, pump, lights, regulator (I have a CO2 tank - just gotta get it filled) heater and substrate. I will be using lava pebbles in nylon bags to build up height, got some nice red lava to build into some real height, Stratum to provide area for planting around and behind the "mounds", and will be using pool sand to provide a flat area in the front and lead the eye toward the back to provide some depth.

I am still planning the plant list and fish, although I am leaning toward 15 or so Congo Tetra's and a school of cory's. That is CERTAINLY subject to change! I tend to stock fish very lightly but between the tank and sump I will have 318 liters (minus hardscape, of course).

I am really looking forward to using the lights I got. I used t5's on my tanks in California (40 and 120 gallons) and have a Finnex 24/7 planted in my man cave. For this one I got a SB Lights Freshwater 32" Basic that has much more control over the lighting and puts out a LOT of light. They recommend the 32" for a 48" tank


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I'm going to use CO2 and plan to get a peristaltic pump for dosing to keep up with the nutrient demands of the plants.

I am in a pet store wasteland here -35 minute drive to a good fish store located in Daytona Beach or an hour up to Jacksonville. I'm planning on getting most of the plants and fish from a store that will special order them for me that is located in Jacksonville. I got some stonecats (Noturus flavus) and habrosus cory's from him and they were really nice. The plants are all special orders and the list I can choose from is huge - all the plants are from growers in South Florida and the plants I saw being prepped for shipping looked really good. I am going to take some buce's out of my small tank and maybe a couple other plants to supplement what I get new.

The stand is primed and will be ready to paint soon - a light sage green that will work well with the family room (we're in Florida!). I'll keep you posted.

Dan
 

Dan Knowlton

New Member
Thread starter
Joined
9 Mar 2021
Messages
3
Location
Florida
Got some work done on the tank - almost all of the carbonate is off the glass and the back of the tank is painted flat black, the stand is painted and drilled, the tank and stand are inside for more work and I have to get a 20 gallon long tank for the sump. I could make the 29 gallon tank work but it would be uncomfortably tall. All of the equipment and parts needed have arrived except for the soft silicone tubing for the pump return and that should be here in 2 days. My current 20 long is stuffed full of plants that will be planted in the 55 - the only problem is that there was some duckweed included.

The return from the pump will be placed to the side of the weir to allow circulation with the "nozzle" parallel with the back of the tank. I may have to add one or more Tunze Nanostreams when the plants fill in. I added painter's tape grids to the outside of the front of the tank to aid in layout - my wife thinks I am losing my mind!

At this point, I am intending to use Congo Tetra's as the main fish and have not decided on which Cory species. I keep thinking of how nice a group of Angelfish would look...

Sorry about the slow progress. I have been playing too many gigs and practices lately (bass guitar) and new music can really be a time sink!

Dan
 

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