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Old 08-01-2011, 10:10 AM   #1 
coet
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Question Divided Tank Suggestions and Help Needed

In 20 days I'm going to be leaving for college and I'm taking my two baby boys, Snowy and Berry, with me. Currently they are both in 1.5g Tetra Wonder Cubes or whatever they are {X}. My college says that I can have an aquarium as long as it is no bigger than 10 gallons with any fish of my choosing. I started out the summer like "It's only three gallons!" but getting closer to move in I've realized that I don't want to risk rocking the boat, so putting my two boys in a divided tank might be best. I'm also wanting to do a planted tank, and I don't think a 1.5g would be optimal for plants. A bigger tank would also be better because it would be a little less maintenance. I'm currently doing 100% weekly, and it takes a lot of time. My cold water comes out of the tap at 85 degrees (it's 105 out there most days), so it takes forever to come down to "normal" temperature. Last time I did a 10g set up I believe the maintenance was 25%-50% water change once a month, but I can do biweekly if it is better.

I also really don't want to do a 10g, but the PetSmart I work at only sells 10g and 20g dividers. I'm not sure how to make my own, or where to get a custom one made. But, I feel like a 10g would make for a better planted aquarium than something smaller (like a 5g). If my grandmother's stupid hamster hadn't eaten the silicon off of the 10g I had, I would only need a hood and heater. But I'm starting from scratch, so I need everything. So, question time:
  • What would be a good filter and heater for a 10g divided set up?
  • Is two weeks enough time to get a cycle started and be able to put my fish in, without hurting them?
  • Does a 10g make a good planted tank for Water Wisteria and an Amazon Sword?
  • Surely, two bettas would be fine in a divided 10g, but would three be okay? Another boy at the store caught my attention, and I'd love to have him. :( :)
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Old 08-01-2011, 11:29 AM   #2 
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If you really want a 5 gallon, you can make dividers out of plastic mesh, there's a tutorial in the tanks section.

As far as a 10 gallon, water changes need to be weekly. About 30%. And the tank itself is the cheapest part of a set up. I find that hoods, filters and heaters are $20-25 each and the tank itself is usually about $10.

Plants work in a 10 or a 5. I have a planted 5 and it does nice with shorter plants.

Just make sure the filter and heater are rated for 10 gallons. Heaters are better if they are adjustable. If your fish are sick, it's easy to get the temp up and they are more accurate. Don't forget a thermometer! As for a filter, as long as it's rated for 10 gallons it should be ok. I have an aquaclear in mine and I like it.

You could do a fish in cycle. In a filtered tank, it will eventually cycle. Bettas don't need a cycled tank, so as long as you do bigger water changes for a while, nothing bad will happen and your tank will cycle on it's own.

Amazon swords get pretty big. So it's up to you. They will work in a 10 gallon, just be prepared to have to get rid of them if they get huge. And wisteria is a great plant.

And yeah, 3 in a divided 10 would be good. :) That gives 3 gallons each. Just have 1 or 2 gallon bowls (or vases etc) in case one gets sick and he needs quarantined. You don't want all of them to get sick.
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Old 08-01-2011, 11:48 AM   #3 
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Thanks for all the help!

My Amazon Sword is tiny right now, I couldn't imagine it getting any bigger. I'm glad you told me it would. :)

I looked at the DIY divider, and I think I'll go that route, even if I choose to do a 10. It seems to work out cheaper than buying the dividers pre-made. I'll decide on the 10gallon by Friday. Mostly it comes down to do I want to take on a third child or stick with two. That's when I'm going to get everything.

I've already got two thermometers to monitor the temperature in my 1.5gallons. The heaters I have aren't adjustable, but they are "pre-set" to 78 and have auto shut off. They've done an excellent job so far of keeping my tanks at the proper temperature.

I have a quarantine tank already. It's only 1/2 gallon, so I'm not all that happy with it, but the water stays 76 on it's own. When I get a bigger tank I can keep one of the 1.5gallons on hand for quarantine if necessary.
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Old 08-01-2011, 01:08 PM   #4 
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http://www.walmart.com/ip/Penn-Plex-...c-Pets/9904376 ....if youre looking for a pre-divided one. Has a light, hood, filter, all that. Its expensive up front, but about the same as most 5 gallon inclusive acrylics.

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Aquacultur...-1-ct/10312734 This is a good 10 gallon. Easy to divide :D

Be careful when dividing 5 gallons...Theyre not standard size and will require lots of fussing over measurements..
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Tetra-Aqua...ndingMethod=rr
This requires as said, but is a good tank.
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Old 08-01-2011, 01:37 PM   #5 
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Thanks Pew! I'm going to go check that pre-divided 5g out. It would cost me just about as much to get all the things for a 10g and divide it. And I'm thinking the two heater I have will heat it if I place one in each corner. I'll just make sure to have thermometers in the middle to check for a cold pocket.
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Old 08-01-2011, 01:51 PM   #6 
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you can find a 10 gallon kit at walmart for I believe it was about $45-$50, might end up being more worth your wile then getting a plain 10 gallon and then buying the hood and filter seperate.
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Old 08-01-2011, 01:55 PM   #7 
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I was looking at a 10g at PetSmart. It's on sale for $24.99 and it has the tank and the hood, and the hood is usually $34.99. The filter I was looking at getting was $17.99, but I'm considering getting two small filters for each side since I saw people having trouble with filtration. So, for that It would already be over $40, not even including the heater. I'm not sure what I want to do yet. It might be worth my while to go ahead and get a 10g, because that would give the bettas I have more room, the plants more room, and if I really want to I can get another betta. Decisions, decisions.
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Old 08-01-2011, 05:48 PM   #8 
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If you're worried about heating a little quarantine tank, you can always float it in your regular tank. It'll be the same temp as the water it's placed in.

If I were you, I'd go for the 10. I like the space and you can always get a third.

If you place the heater next to the filter, it will circulate the heat better. You only need 1 heater and 1 filter, and they will work together.
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Old 08-02-2011, 04:22 PM   #9 
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I've definitely decided on the 10g, especially after seeing this last awesome deal last night at work. It'll save me about $40 right from the start, and then I'll only spend about $20 on a heater and another $6 on an addition bag of gravel. I can make my own dividers from there.

I'll eventually upgrade to a Floramax light, within the next week, I'm just worried about doing a cycle with fish and plants. Silly me jumped the gun and got plants already.
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Old 08-02-2011, 04:54 PM   #10 
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You should be good. Plants will help use up the ammonia your fish produce. Just test the water to make sure everything is in order. :)
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