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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wanted to share one of my tanks I recently set up in a few hours. The tank is an ADA (Do!Aqua version) Mini-S tank (31cm wide) that I recently picked up from Aqua Forest in San Francisco. It uses 3 Ryuoh stones, ADA Amazonia II substrate, and many plants included glossostigma, H.C., and other stemmed plants.

CO2 injection

  • I am using a Dazs CO2 diffuser for this tank, I have other as well that work just fine, but I like the bubbles from the Dazs unit as they appear to be smaller than those from the ADA/Do!Aqua models.
  • The CO2 source is a paintball cylinder (I have a friend in the business). The CO2 is solenoid controlled with the light.
  • The bubble counter is on the side, and I use an NV-55 needle valve for the highest precision, it works the best in my opinion

Lighting

  • The lighting is a Archea with a 24W CF bulb.
  • Currently the timer runs for 8 hours a day

Filtration

  • I use a Tom's Aquatics C80 mini canister filter with this setup:

  1. I dump all filter media that it originally comes with.
  2. One side gets plain old filter floss for mechanical filtration.
  3. The other side gets a filling of Matrix bio media and a bag of Purigen for chemical, I use that instead of carbon.
  4. I also added some pre-colonized plastic media to help jump start the cycling process; this may get replaced with more Matrix later.

  • The filter pipes are Do!Aqua, although I will replace them with the Cal-Aqua Fluxus pipe setup, I like them better and they are half the price. They are also easier to clean than the Do!Aqua pipes.

This tank also has two plants that are recovering from other tanks, the H.C. and some tall stemmed plants in the back were right on the edge of not making it in the tanks they were in, so I moved them here to try and revive them. It seems to be working. Right now the tank is cycling so there is no livestock at this time.

Thanks for reading, and any comments would be appreciated on any of the above information or on the photos.

Dennis
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Lighting Options

Note that the photos above show a Tom's Aquatics 18watt lamp that was originally used. I wanted to share some lighting options I played with before deciding on the Archea lamp. Also, I am going to experiment with an LED option that I really like. I found a 10-watt LED on ebay from Hong Kong that is extremely bright. Even though it's rated at 10 watts, it's 650 lumens! That's almost as bright as my LCD projector which is rated at 1000 lumens. Here's some sample photos I took of the 3 lighting systems before starting the tank:







More photos of that LED option:







The LED option is a little "bluer" than I'd like it to be but it's supposed to be in the plant growth temperature. I was probably going to use two of them. If anyone wants some more photos of the lights themselves let me know, I have quite a few as I wanted to document this tank build with lots of photos.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Regarding the Do!Aqua Tank

I took some detailed photos of the Aqua!Do tank for you guys. The glass has the same beveled edge properties of the ADA tanks, and also seems to me to be almost if not exactly as clear as the ADA equivalent. In fact, I liked it so much I went ahead and got AFA's last Do!Aqua tank, they had a Mini-M sized one left for $45.







 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Updated photos with stand

I moved the tank and set it up at my office, which is where I always wanted this little guy to be. A lot of people at work have stopped by to see the setup and are all very impressed, which makes me happy! I put the tank on a $30 stand I got at PetSmart, and drilled it accordingly to support the mini canister filter and the CO2 setup. The top right door hides the filter and CO2 bubble counter, check valve, and needle valve. The tank itself sits behind the stand.











I am taking the LED light contraption over to Steven at Aqua Forest in San Francisco tomorrow to get his opinion of it. I have figured out a way to mount two of those LED lamps to an old Pentium II heat sink which is much wider than the standard square type of CPU fans in use today. That will be pretty neat when I get that worked out.

I got in contact with a friend of mine who runs a machine shop about trying to fashion a curved metal housing for the LED lighting. I also tried out a cold cathode tube lighting system and it ended up looking JUST like the light that is on there now. I changed the light out from the small 13W to the 24 watt lamp shown here, available at AFA.

The cold cathode lamps run very cool and require less power than the CF lamp shown here. They are typically used inside computers to show them off. I'll let you know how that works out if there is any interest in it.

Thanks for reading.

Dennis
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Looks like it has some really good potentional. So which light did you end up using? Which is the clip on light shown. I've redone my mini s several times and have used the coralife mini with a combination of 10k and 6700k bulbs. It could be alittle brighter but works well.
I ended up with the Archea 24 watt clip on light as shown in the final photos. I am still working on the LED option and will probably go with that one when it's done. I also tried a Coralife mini 18 (with 2 9-watt bulbs) and upgraded it to 2 13-watt bulbs. It ran great for about a month (at 26 watts) until one of the ballasts finally burned out (which I thought it would, since they're 9 watt rated). I am assuming that's what happened until I change the bulb out to see if it's just the bulb.
 

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Nice setup, I like the sleek and clean look. What livestock were you planning on? I had a small setup with a canister filter but I kept getting surface scum buildup so I that tank is just sitting dead in the corner, have you noticed any buildup yet? j/w Keep us updated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
On the livestock, I am going to get my standard maintenance crew, amano shrimp (3 or 4), an SAE (when there's some more algae), and a dwarf puffer (for the snails).

The fish - I was thinking about going with about 5 or 6 *little* tiny fish, I forget the names but I will post them when I get the guys.

Regarding surface scum, I top off the water level maybe every other day or so and it stirs up the surface. I also get a little agitation from the tulip filter pipe flowing water upwards.

I just had to try out the single LED option to see how it worked out, so I attached it to a metal bar and suspended it high above the tank to see how well the light penetrated the water. Here are some of the photos.





 
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