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About Fishman44

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  • Birthday 02/20/1975

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    Freshwater everything mostly, hockey, mountain biking and camping with friends and family.
  1. Diy Led Aquarium Lighting (Inexpensive And Easy Way)

    Hey everyone, finally getting around to catching up in the forum. Just a couple of things I wanted to share from my experience using the flexible IP65 "waterproof" led strips you find everywhere now. First of, I have run both the color changing strips and 6500k white strips on my system and I won't lie, they were both awesome. but after time a couple of things surfaced that I wanted to caution you about. Caution #1 they are not waterproof, splash proof might be a better description, I had a short length of glue fail on my color changing strip and when I discovered it the strip was hanging into my tank. It couldn't have been there for more than a day or two and there was signs of corrosion with the copper turning green. I don't know if the green oxidation is toxic to fish but I dio know that copper itself is and if nothing else the Leds downstream of wet spot quit working shortly after. Caution #2 Mine turned yellow over time which blocked most of the light output. I initially thought I was pushing to high of a voltage causing more heat but later read that it is likely due to the UV reaction with the PVC waterproofing. Has anyone else has had this issue. I had originally installed them to help cut the cost of running t5 fixtures but more for the longevity of the the light quality, hoping to not have to replace them twice a year to avoid the brown algae and such. Since I am a hard core DIYer and have a very hard time paying retail for anything I am going to try again to build my own lights but this time I will be using the IP22 non waterproof 6500k strips (no pvc layer to yellow) and the DIY King's pvc pipe trick to avoid having them fall into the tank again. I am also looking into t5 Led replacement tubes. The price I am finding at the wholesale is about a third the cost of the high calvin fluorescents and hoping they will last a long time but the T5s are only offered up to 5000k. I may pull the old T8s out of the shed and set them up with Led tubes rated for 6500k at just under $20 a tube. I do believe the light output is in the 2200 lumens per tube range. Has anyone tried these tubes out in there existing fixtures yet?
  2. Wow, extra glad I got this thread going again. I have been in the hobby for many years and have shared a dream with many others, the maintenance free aquarium. I know there will always be a need for some maintenance but with three teen aged kids all active in some thing or another any time I have to enjoy my hobby is often involves maintaining it. Biodives, I do appreciate the detailed comparison of the effectiveness of large weekly vs smaller daily water changes. I also enjoyed reading your blog on the planted filter system, I had a plan in place for something quite similar when I was designing my current setup but the Africans won again. I always go back. I do have a space in my sump that could easily be set up as a refergium, I would be interested in some suggestions for the best filter plants if appearance is not really a factor but high water flow is. Jvision, I'm thinking that the flow through design might work out for my particular setup. I am fortunate to have full access to whatever plumbing I wish to install and with my tank built into the wall I can hide it all. I think I may even be able to just bypass the RO cartridge of my existing filter system. Funksolid, until I can confirm that the water I am introducing has no chlorine in it to harm my fish I think at the cost of prime vs dead fish, I'll go with the prime.
  3. This thread seems to have been put to rest as the consensus seems to be with the big water changes. I am 100% on board with this but I do have a question about the fresh water being used. I'm on the south side of Calgary, I run 2x75g and 1x180g tanks on a single sump with a 60g capacity, I over filter like crazy and do my weekly 25-50% water changes time dependent. I have been treating my replacement water with Prime for years usually panicking when I run out but recently I did run out adding straight tap water for a few weeks in a row without seeing any negative effects. I keep primarily Malawi Cichlids (all types) with a couple of Synodontis Njassae and a couple of common plecos. I must confess that I did pick up another bottle of Prime but my question is this; Is it necessary to treat Calgary Tap water before adding it to the tank. ? I'd also like to add a curiosity question; If I am changing approximately 200g per week would it be as effective to do 30 gallons per day? At this rate my RO system can easily be used to do the water changes but my system can't produce enough water fast enough for the big changes not to mention I have used all of the space I am allowed by my lovely wife for tanks so there is no room to have a holding tank for the RO to produce into to be used for the water changes.
  4. What kind of snail is this?? ID

    I was just looking for some info on what I believe to be the same type of snail, my question is; has anyone had snails like these spontaneously appear in a tank? I haven't added any fish in 3 months, plants in over a year and no new decorations either. I have 2 tanks sharing a sump and the snails, about 100 or more 1-2.5mm just appeared in only one of the tanks. I watch my tanks closely and today is the first time I have seen them. Sorry my pics are worse
  5. New Tank Setup

    I get you there, on the OCD thing. The hardest part for me will be realizing that my new setup won't ever be as perfect as I imagine it, especially when it is first set up. Good luck with the sword, they are an awesome plant when they are strong and heathy.
  6. New Tank Setup

    You will have a hard time making you Amazon sword happy at the same time as keeping your cichlids happy. Africans like hard, alkaline water, swords like soft, acidic water. In my last tank setup I was running Calgary tap water with basic filter media and my swords were hurting, no growth skinny blades and pale Color. I went and talked to the staff at the much missed Hole in the Wall fish store and they game me buffer down and peat pellets to put in my tank and the swords went nuts, added a bit of fertilizer too. I had one plant that was pushing off the front and rear glass of my 90g tank and almost reached the surface. I wouldn't sweat it too much though, your tank does look great.
  7. New Tank Setup

    What is your time frame for liquidation? I'm still gathering all my bits and pieces to put my setup together and looking at least another month before I'm "ready" for fish. Hope to have the basement done in a few weeks, moving the 180g tank into place is scheduled for this weekend if I can find enough friends willing to put their backs on the line for my obsession. I would be interested in your cichlid safe plants and perhaps the driftwood pieces, I can put the plants in my kid's tank until I'm ready but I don't think his guppies would appreciate the tank mates you have to offer. I'm sure there is a way to Private message on the forum but being new I'm not sure how, if not I can give you my email to talk $$s if you like. As far as the comment about the good quality fish, I too am looking for some top notch specimens to put in my tank. I haven't had any luck finding any online suppliers but I have been told by a few of the LFSs that if I bring them a list of what I am looking for they would be happy to bring them in special for me if they have access to them.
  8. New Tank Setup

    I thank you very much for the reply. I'm so glad I have found Alberta Aquatic, so many questions answered already and I haven't even put a drop of water in my tank. I will take a look at your suggested plants when I get out and about and I'd love to see the pictures of the completed setup. Thanks again,
  9. I purchased a used 175 gallon tank and set it on styrofoam on my garage floor to do the leak test. Must say i was impressed with how the foam compressed under the tank evenly distributing the weight and left a perfect imprint of the floor on the back side. I plan to use 1" under my 175 gal. display tank and 1/2" under my 75 gallon sump and future 80 gallon second display tank. I have also been advised to do this by many "experts" that I have come across through my planning. The product I use is fairly cheap http://www.homedepot.ca/product/plastispan-hd-eps-rigid-insulation-96inch-x-24inch-x-1inch/940428 I use the HD because it says it is mildew resistant.
  10. New Tank Setup

    Your tank looks amazing! I'm planning something similar in a 72 x 24 x 24 display tank. What type of vegetation are you using? This is something I'd like to add to mine when I get on it but I have been lead to believe that cichlids and plants don't mix.
  11. Spray Foam

    Having never used spray foam before I am wondering if it is safe for the fish? I also see the suggestion to paint it, what kind of paint should one use in an aquarium?
  12. Pumped to get started.

  13. Hello

    Hello fellow Aquarium enthusiasts. My name is Scott, I go by Fishman44 on this forum. I am currently working on plans for my largest build to date, a 175 gallon Malawi cichlid tank which will be built into on of the walls in my current basement development. I am Calgary and fell upon this forum while reading another forum looking for ideas and good places to buy beautiful fish. I have been out of the hobby for about 7 years, since I broke my 90 gallon tank moving into the house i'm in now :cry:, and I hope you all don't mind lots of questions, things have come a long way since the last tank was setup. This will be my second African tank in my many years experience but this will be the first time that I am going to come in with a plan and not just buy whatever looks the coolest when I have $10 in my pocket. Now I have to have $20. My build will include the 175 gallon display tank with a combination of Rock piles and sand filtered by a 55 gallon sump and a possible future 75 gallon planted/guppy & shrimp/food refugium tank if I can convince my wife it is a good idea. I am not the greatest at documenting my projects but I will try to keep up on pictures as I get through the steps. Step one is complete with the stand built, step 2 goes this weekend getting the nearly 400 lbs of glass sitting in my garage down into the basement before the drywall comes in. Thanks to all for having me as part of your community, I look forward to many wasted hrs at work looking over your posts. Scott.