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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Originally this thread started over at TPT, but due to the overbearing administration that "run" the site I no longer plan on posting publicly on there.

I'll be migrating the thread over here bit by bit as a Journal and proceed with discussions I was having there over here.

Due to some issues users were having with load times I've split the 6.5 project off here and created a new thread for the emersed part.
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Equipment List:

Tank - Mr. Aqua 6.5 Bookshelf (24" x 6" x 9")
Filter - Eheim 2213 and DIY 'Sump' fed with MAME Overflow
Substrate - Brightwell Aquatics FlorinVolcanit XF (Extra Fine)
Lighting - Current Satellite Freshwater Plus 24" & EcoXotic E-Series 24"
Heating - 200w Hydor Inline Heater w/ Finnex HC-810M Thermostat
CO2 - Injected via 5lb tank
Regulator - Milwaukee
Diffuser - ADA Inline 'knockoff'

Current Status - DRY START (Started 10/30/2015)

Initial pic of when the tank arrived:


First addition to the tank while waiting for other hardware to show up in the mail:


The addition of Tillsandia actually inspired the overall scape which you will see in a bit. I'll get into this further on when the tank is a flooded status.

My initial set of lily pipes came in. Well they looked great in moody shots, but I don't think the outflow 'fit' the aquarium dimensions. Regardless, here's a pic:



Finally was able to find spiderwood to fit my tank at a LFS.



And because it looked like a jumble of wood I figured I'd test out a hardscape with some Fluval Stratum I had laying around.



Finally the hardware I had been waiting on shipping gets in!



Also, started sketching out the wiring/hosing diagrams of how I plan on automating this entire system once it's all up and running. Check it out!



Only took a month for me to get around test filling the tank. Figured I'd give the Tills a good soak too while I was at it.







Also, moved the hardscape in with the new Brightwell substrate that showed up.



In my need for more glass (be it lily pipes or camera lenses) I added another piece of hardware to the project. Will allow me to hide the hardware for automation in a mini sump as well as increase flow and overall volume past the tanks 6.5 gallons.











While picking up a box of plants up at my small town's Post Office (see my emersed thread) there was another package in my name... I wasn't expecting anything, let alone had a tracking number saying something was showing up...

But....



One of the two things I've been most stoked about showed, and I'm fairly impressed for it being a 'knock off'


Just waiting on the 13mm pipes that were back ordered to come my way now.

Ended up having to leave for work since a call came in... But good news was this was waiting for me...




Decided to paint the back of the tank for contrast with some PlastiDip. Figure I can remove it if I don't like it.



Flipped 180 and taped the sides and top off:


BAM! Done. Not bad if I say so myself!



Just like a very promising date that was on a roll, one thing led to another...Y'all Ready For This?



Yep, planted the first round of stuff for the dry start! Lets start with a tour of the current layout:

On the right, you will see the ever so lustrous Staurogyne Repens as it creeps the base of the spiderwood. Behind it the mystical reds and purples of the Alternanthera Reineckii 'Mini'. Slightly to the left is the delicate ruffles of the Pogostemon Helferi 'Downoi'.





Here you can see the center of the tank with the 'field' of Marsilea Crenata:


To the left we can see the final carpet being started with sprigs of Utricularia Gramnifolia:
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
<11/1/2015 Dry Start Day 3>









<11/3/2015 Dry Start Day 3>





I'm not sure you can see it, but the Marsilea Crenata is turning a bit brown. I'm not sure why. It's moist and doesn't get scorching hot... I'm clueless on the issue. Thoughts?

I've been pulling out the stringy mold that's been growing on the wood. Gave it a bit of a dose of excel in hopes it kills the mold. We will see.

Also these showed up in the mail from GLA. Thanks guys!

 

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First of all, welcome to APC, we are happy to have you!

For some reason I can't view most of your photos, but what I can see is really interesting. Maybe it is in one of the photos I can't see, but I am very curious about the wood with the bromeliad.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hi Michael! Thanks for the welcoming to APC. I think I had another account here years ago, but I forgot what it was.

I can see all these pictures clearly, are you on the mobile site? Just as a heads up I'm using Chrome and can see everything I put in. If I need to change anything to get them to work, please let me know.
 

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I'm viewing on a desktop using Mozilla. I suspect my Avast anti-virus software is causing the problem. Is anyone else having difficulty?
 

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They work fine for me but it takes do so long to load this page I can't be bothered to read it. I don't mean to be rude but it is a bit much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
BruceF, I'm sorry for the overload of pictures. Keep in mind that I don't plan on posting this many pictures at once like I did, this was only done as I'm migrating my journal from the TPT here. I actually thinned out a handful of pictures that I posted on my TPT thread. If other users agree and would like me to thin out the pictures on the initial post I will.
 

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Well I just wanted to see what you said in response and this time it crashed my chrome version. Again I don't mean to be rude but you may want to lighten this load if you want people to post here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
BruceF, I've pulled out the parts of emersed growth and plan to make a standalone thread to that which I will link back and fourth to save the users on load time. Only pics (still a lot) that I have on here are related to the tank. I was having quick load times on Chrome and Mozilla previously and it's even faster now.

The emersed thread can be found >>here<<
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well this is my 3rd attempt at posting on my thread here at APC. Lets hope third time is the charm!

<11/8/2015 Dry Start Day 10>

As this is my first attempt at a DSM, I'm pleased to say all is going well with little assistance from myself. I'm noticing some plants showing odd red characteristics, but rather than explain them take a look.

P. Helferi showing some odd reddening.


S. Repens showing some very odd reddening and almost a few leaves as if it's a variegated sp.


The U. Gramnifolia that I picked up from GLA has shot out tons of runners from it's in-vitro state. Now it's starting to show it's fine emersed form.




Even my Tillsandia Sp. enjoyed the addition of the E-Series light. Sadly I missed one shot of the dual blooms she had with this being a hectic weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
<11/11/2015 Dry Start Day 13>

Did a little work on the tank today. I added some Ranunculus Inundatus and Ammania Sp. 'Bonsai' AKA True Rotala Indica.





Besides that I added a few more crowns of P. Helferi and S. Repens to fill out the mini hedges and carpets they were growing.



The M. Crenata carpet is coming along nicely.

Day 3:


Day 13:


As well as the U. Gramnifolia which has also picked up it's growth pace.



I'm thinking of moving the AR 'Mini' that I have behind the S. Repens and placing it on the U. Gramnifolia side. Unsure if I will or not. Thoughts? I'd like to get a nice lush bush of Rotala 'Mini Butterfly', Rotala Colorata and Rotala 'Green' fading in on the right hand side on the rear, so I figured I'd relocated the AR 'Mini'. I'm thinking of Ludwigia Peruensis, Ludwigia Inclinata and a miniature form of Limnophila Aromatica on the left.

Last overall shot for the night:

 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Well I jumped the gun and relocated the AR Mini as well as a bit of the U. Gramnifolia. When making space for the Reineckii I noticed that the UG doesn't root deep... This might be a concern later when it comes to flood date. As for the AR... Well it made a mess and I had to fill back in the hole where the AR use to live. Also had to trim their roots prior to planting as they were a few inches long. I think I like this layout more.





I plan on growing a hedge of Lobelia Cardinalis behind the S. Repens and P. Helferi to give another level of depth before the stems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
<11/15/2015 Dry Start Day 17>

I'm really enjoying how the tank has settled post the relocation of the AR 'Mini' to the left side.



I also picked up some Lobelia Cardinalis and Anubias Barteri Nana 'Petite' today in some in-vitro packs. I've planted the Cardinal plant in some Fluval Stratum and placed it in my emersed grow out to get it a little more sturdy before I move it over. I also did the same with the Anubias, but am unsure if they will have a home in this tank in the long run. Go here for emersed updates!

Here are some shots of the tank today:







 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks xc0xbc! I really appreciate it.

As for the automation, it's still in a paper phase. In the past few weeks I've picked up the Raspberry Pi 2 that will be the brains of the system and a 7" TFT Touchscreen that will display and be a basic interface to some of the features. I've got the touchscreen up and running, but I'm stuck in the design phase of the physicals right now. I hate to say it, but I'm stuck when it comes to the enclosure. I know I need to have a relay board on there and I've found a perfect isolated Arduino sensor board... But it's ARDUINO specific and not compatible with RPi... I probably could get it working, but I'm not a software developer let alone a driver level developer. I'm actually going to order the 16 port relay board tonight and see if I can get the RPi talking to an Arduino Mega or Arduino Uno to get the isolated board to log the data and transfer it to the Pi.

If anyone on here is an Arduino or RPi user pleaseeeeee let me know. I'm a novice at that stuff so I'll take any input I can get.
 

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It is hard to see your diagram but if you need to control something like an led light I would just capture the remotes IR signals for playback. If you are trying to get live data about chemistry it is gonna be a good bit of work. Lazy mans way. It looks like others have done something similar. Think I might make this a future project. It would be awesome if you could get chemical info.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Well I ordered the relay, a pH probe and an Arduino Uno to use for the logic. Why? Well I want to use the RPi as the brains and control them through a homebrewed CANBUS. Logic behind that is it will be translated to work in my automotive hobby once I've dialed it in here. Besides that I grabbed my relay setup and some other odds and ends. I plan to use this initial setup to just provide a proof of concept on grabbing chemical information and transcribe the Uno & probe combo as an interface for the RPi. Luckily I work with developers and people who can write better code then I when it comes to assistance in debugging. Per discussion with my coworkers I've got plenty of interest and support on the project.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
<11/22/2015 Dry Start Day 24>

The dry start has REALLY started to pick up on these plants. The UG has exploded in growth and the Marsilea Crenata seems to be booming now.

FTS:
http://i.imgur.com/UUSxzca.jpg?1

Explosive UG:


AR 'Mini' has picked up since its relocation:


Marsilea Crenata has never looked better than today!:


Pogostemon Helferi 'Downoi' showing a few phases:


Staurogen Repens, Ammania 'Bonsai', and Ranunculus Inandatus corner:


I'm trying to find a nice place for my Hygrophila Pinnatifida once the tank is flooded in a month or so. Also, any recommendations of what to fill that front gap?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
<11/27/2015 Dry Start Day 29>

Not really an update to Overkill per say, but just figured I'd show how one tank has lead to another...



And we can't forget the emersed stuff!

 
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