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Discussion Starter #1
I have been keeping saltwater reef tanks for about 6 years now and decided I wanted to try my hand at a planted freshwater tank. So I will be setting up a 14 gal Bio-Cube. The tank will get here on Tuesday!

I went to the fish store today, something I probably shouldn't have done, and purchased things for a tank that I don't even have yet. Anyways I got one piece of drift wood and another piece of Mopani wood for the decorations in the tank. I also purchased Live Freshwater Substrate and a couple 5lbs. bags of natural gravel. I also got a thermometer...

So while looking at fish and trying to come up with what I want to keep in the tank I got this-

5-6 Cardinal Tetras
2 Blue Rams
2 Korthausae Killifish
3 Cory Cat

What other fish would you recommend?

So thats a place to start! I am not sure on what plants I want to keep yet, but am still looking!

Any information would be great!

Matt
 

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Welcome to the forum, Matt.

As for some recommendations, once you cycle the tank, I'd recommend some cleaning crew of Otocinclus and some shrimp (Cherries and/or Amanos).

Good Luck and looking forward to the pictures.
 

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Make sure the rams are one female and one male. What brand is the "live freshwater" substrate? You probably won't need that AND the gravel.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Thanks for the information. I will have to check the brand on that sand.

5-6 Cardinal Tetras
2 German Blue Rams
2 Korthausae Killifish
3 Cory Cat
Maybe a couple Danios or Sword Tails

What do you think?

I am currently soaking the driftwood in RO water. What would be the ideal temperature and pH to keep the tank at? Also what are acceptable Nitrate levels for the tank?

Thanks,

Matt
 

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I would go with the rams OR the Killifish, not both. One of them would be the centerpiece of your fish, the cardinals would be dither fish and the cory's your catfish. As gravy9 mentioned, once your tank is decently established and has a little algae Otocinclus would be good to add, maybe a rubber lip or bushynose pleco too. Soaking the driftwood in R/O is fine, but i wouldn't use R/O water for your tank unless your tap water has some weird parameters. In planted tanks the trace minerals in tap are actually good for the plants. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the suggestions and AWESOME links!

So after reading about half of whats on the aquaticplants.org site I have questions about CO2.

Obviously I have a smaller tank and it says that it would be over done to add a CO2 system. But since my tank is a higher light tank would you recommend a CO2 dosing system? Or would the Flourish Excel by seachem work?

I also have questions on the Yeast and sugar thing...? I did not really understand this. You put them in a bottle and use airline tubing and it doses automatically? Or do you have to valve it down to get the correct dosage?

Any input is more than welcome!

Matt
 

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I have a 10gal which is CO2 injected, so it's definitely not overkill. :) How much light are you planning on having?

DIY CO2 with yeast/water is not a controllable system. The CO2 produced just is fed into the tank/reactor as you choose. What comes out is what you've got.

Your other choice is Excel which monetarily speaking, is ok with smaller tanks. It works well, and is certainly do-able on a 14 gal.
 

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THe only way to control the amount on CO2 in a DIY system is to vary the amount of yeast you used. More yeast = more CO2 = more frequent changing solutions.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I am running 48 watts on the 14BC. It is about 3.4 WPG.

Would I be able to use a Paintball CO2 bottle or is there a specific one I need to use? Also, would I need to get a monitor of some kind for it?

On the Excel, how does it work? How much would I have to do to keep my CO2 levels at the proper level?
 

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If you use pressurized and want to be sure of your levels, a drop checker is the only way to go. For Excel, just follow label directions. I would expect you could get away with using Excel, and running a photoperiod of about 7-8hours. If you needed to adjust afterwards, you could do so according to your needs. I have 36W over my 10 gal with pressurized.
 

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I am running 48 watts on the 14BC. It is about 3.4 WPG.

Would I be able to use a Paintball CO2 bottle or is there a specific one I need to use? Also, would I need to get a monitor of some kind for it?

On the Excel, how does it work? How much would I have to do to keep my CO2 levels at the proper level?
One of the sponsors sells an adapter to use paintball CO2. Can't remember which one off the top of my head though. Most people use 5 or 10 lb. aluminum cylinders since they last longer. You can find them locally at any welding supply (Airgas, etc.)
 

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One of the sponsors sells an adapter to use paintball CO2. Can't remember which one off the top of my head though.
I think it's Orlando with Green leaf Aquariums - he's one of our sponsors, good guy to deal with.
 

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paint ball co2 will work it just will have to be filled more often. At that higher light I don't think excel will be sufficient. I have a 5lb bottle on my 10 gallon and it dose well.
 
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