Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2007 10:23 pm Post subject: Re: Help needed by a hardcore DIY newbie
Nanu, anay, ohmm, rohan :
The idea of a meet up is way good !
we could say to each other many more things than can be said in typed words....
and later on... we would know whom to turn to when somebody needs a new home for a fish in an overcrowded tank, and also ... those prunings will never go waste again.
And organizing trips to places will be just a beginning ...
hope to hear from you guys soon!
Here goes the plunge. I am setting up (finally!) an nano 10"x10"x10" tank for myself. It will use the Diana Walstad method, and as Madan suggested, CO2 injection. I will use a DIY yeast CO2 injector.
It's going to be DIY all the way, including the tank !!
I will document each step of the setup, including all names and addresses of suppliers and prices of products, as i do it, so i can get your feedback if i'm doing any major wrong thing, and also so that later on, when a newbie like me want to do this, they may learn from my mistakes....
I will be taking pictures from my Nokia 6233, it has only a 2 MP camera, but the photos are good when taken with good ambient lighting. If the pics suck, i'm sorry...
Mods, if any of this seems inappropriate to you, please let me know
Joined: Jun 29, 2003 Posts: 7087 Location: Bengaluru, India
Posted: Wed Aug 08, 2007 11:56 pm Post subject: Re: Help needed by a hardcore DIY newbie
I have not even remotely suggested Diana Walstad's method uses DIY or any kind of CO2.
Diana Walstad Method : Use garden soil as substrate and fish food as a source of all plant nutrients. Incandescent light for lighting 1 watt or less per gallon, probably 1-2 mugs water change a month for a say 10 gallon tank, or only top off evaporated water. Less than or about 10% water change once in three months or there abouts, low fish load, no cleaning of the filter until flow almost stops, mulm build up is essential in the substrate, heck I need to re read Ecology of the Planted Aquarium, it's been a while.
DIY CO2 pushed in somewhere into all this makes it ineligible to be called Diana Walstad's method. Same goes for weekly 30% water change and so on.
Please read the book again and don't call it Diana Walstad's method if you deviate from what is clearly stated there. You are mixing up on different methods and you will have a problem that no one can help out with once your aquarium is setup.
Posted: Thu Aug 09, 2007 1:18 am Post subject: Re: Help needed by a hardcore DIY newbie
Point well taken.
Actually Madan, I was talking about your post earlier in this thread, when you said that DIY CO2 for a High Tech Tank is a BAD IDEA. You also mentioned that i had two choices, either a High Tech method with MH, CO2, or one with low growth + no CO2 + low lighting.
I'm glad you dropped in to correct me. It is no CO2 for this tank. The little fishies will thank you too later....
I will re-read Ecology of the Planted Aquarium too tonight. I think i am mixed up with the past two months of research. I need to get my bearings right.
please visit this link for help . Have at least one person ready to help you. If you are making a larger tank with heavier / more bulky glass sheets, make sure you have at least three people to help you.
Points to note (refer to link above before attempting anything):
1.The silicone i used sets VERY QUICKLY. you have less than 5-7 minutes to lay out the sealant on the edges of the glass sheets and smoothen it into an arc, if you take up too much time, the bead will harden to a point where you cannot shape it anymore. Addition of fresh silicone to parts where you felt you had added too less will, in my experience, not help much.
2. Venket's tank (refer to link above), was made by professionals. These guys work quickly. Therefore, if you are making your own tank yourself, do not lay out the silicone bead on all four edges of the base sheet. It will harden very quickly, and later on you will have problems trying to smoothen it out. Instead lay the bead on the base sheet and back sheet, align them and smoothen the bead. (you need a helper with a steady hand), and then proceed with the other sheets.
Glass: Ali Asgar Glass,
1620, Shaniwar Peth,
Prices: 10"x10" - 3 sheets + 10"x9.5" - 2 sheets, Grinding polish on the edges (Powder polish will be better...) = INR 250.00
Silicone + Silicone gun + nozzle + 1 spare nozzle: Keshavlal Popatlal
Bohri Ali, Shaniwar peth,
Prices: Gun (no make mentioned on body)- INR 120.00, Silicone (Dow Corning, tell the supplier you want to build an aquaium): INR 150.00 ( a lot will be left over ...), nozzle: INR 10.00
Last edited by demorphica on Thu Aug 09, 2007 8:54 am; edited 3 times in total
Posted: Thu Aug 09, 2007 2:35 am Post subject: Re: Help needed by a hardcore DIY newbie
I will not upload a whole lot of pictures, this will be unnecessary, as the method i followed has already been described elsewhere in this forum. Please refer to the link i've given two posts ago. Please use the rear end of a spoon instead of your finger to smoothen the bead into an arc. The results will be much better.
The finished result is here:
an nice nano tank. Not very good workmanship, but the results will be public once i perform a leak test 36 hours from now.
The supplier told me that 15 hrs of curing time is enough, but i am still going to wait 36 hours for good measure.
Posted: Thu Aug 09, 2007 8:50 am Post subject: Re: Help needed by a hardcore DIY newbie
A note on glass:
The glass we normally buy has a very faint greenish tint to it. Look at the edges and you will see what I mean.The green will be much more apparent. 12mm thick glass of this kind is around INR 90.00 per sq. foot.
There is another glass which looks much better in well lighted aquaria, it goes by the name of "Extra Clear". and is up to three times as expensive. This glass has an extremely faint bluish tint to it when viewed at the edge. It is indeed, extra clear, and the very very faint blue will do wonders to the appearance of an aquarium.
Comparison of prices:
5x2x2 tank with 12mm normal glass: INR3000.00 approx. (for the glass)
5x2x2 tank with 12mm extra clear glass: almost INR 9000.00 !
Posted: Thu Aug 09, 2007 9:11 am Post subject: Re: Help needed by a hardcore DIY newbie
to the Administrators:
I hope you will agree that the thread should be split from part where the DIY part starts ( post dated : Wed Aug 08, 2007 10:23 pm ), as the thread topic changes from thereon. I should have been more foresighted, but i guess i can count on your help ...
Posted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 7:33 am Post subject: Leak Testing
36 Hours have passed. The silicone has cured. It's time to pass the first milestone to success.
It's time to leak test the tank.
As you can see by comparing the previous pictures, the tank is in the same position as 36 hours ago. It was moved only slightly to check the joints visually.
It's time now to fill the tank with water. I tried to avoid any splashes that would make it difficult to spot tiny leaks... but, i was not entirely successful.
Close up showing the rocks and small stones i painstakingly collected and tested for calcareous characteristics:
I had a GE Silicone IS 8008 ultrafast setting RTV (it fully cures in 15 minutes) handy, which i use for various other purposes with me. I also kept a cutter for the nozzle nearby, so that i could patch up any leaks that could happen.
Bought earlier at the same place in Bohri Ali mentioned earlier, Price INR95.00, cutter bought 6 months back from a huge (biggest) stationery shop in Appa Balwant Chowk, for INR 90.00 (price is worth it )
Here is a pic:
There are no leaks !!! none at all.
So, in spite of not very good workmanship, and despite having to panic spread the silicone in the last moments of construction due to not knowing it would begin to set so quickly, the result was a fortunate success.
Now it's on to the next step. The substrate....
Any comments will be gratefully accepted. Keep watching!
Posted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 11:15 am Post subject: Re: Help needed by a hardcore DIY newbie
Great job !
Coming to substrate, being a tank on Diana Walstad 's theory, you will need red soil as the major substrate, you could top it up with a some calcium free gravel to that the red soil doesnt get into water column.
Posted: Tue Aug 14, 2007 2:53 am Post subject: Re: Help needed by a hardcore DIY newbie
I hope all of you are doing fine...
Here's to the next step of setting up my tank: Aquascaping !
i have a small collection of non calcareous stones and rocks, which i am going to use in my tank... I was alos lucky to find a piece of bogwood suitable in size and appearance. I boiled it in a large container of water with 4 tablespoons of ordinary kitchen salt to sterilize it. I then put it in a body of water for two days which i thought was enough for a piece of wood this small... voila! the wood is almost totally waterlogged and remains sunk. for good measure, i've found a way to keep it sunk by wedging a stone in it.
I am posting a few pictures of the tank with the wood and rocks.. I hope i get your valuable comments on the way it looks...
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