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Old 10-08-2011, 07:24 PM   #1 
MoneyFish
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Join Date: Sep 2011
29 gallon tank questions

My boss gave me a tank that she was done using. She told me it was a 20 gallon with all of the stuff to go along with it. When I went to pick it up, I measured it and found out it was a 29 gallon! Yay! But the filter is pretty old and icky looking so I'm going to get a new one.

So I have never had a tank this large (I know it's not huge, but I'm used to 5 or 10 gallon tanks!). I don't even know where to start. Should I do a fishless cycle? I plan on getting some kuhli loaches, corycats, platys, harlequin rasboras, neon tetras, some ghost shrimp, and maybe a female betta. Does that sound like a group that would be ok? Anything else I could put in there or would that be overstocking?

What size heater do I need? 100watt? Any brands you would recommend? I have the Elite 25 and 50 in my 5 and 10 gallon tanks right now and love them. What about a filter? What size would I need? Brands you would recommend? Do I need to baffle it for these type of fish?

I know I need sand substrate for the loaches and corycats. Is sand hard to work with? I know you have to stir it occasionally to prevent gas bubbles and it can be a pain to rinse when you first get it. Is there a brand anyone would recommend? How much would I need for 29 gallons? Can you plant live plants in sand?

I know that is a lot of questions, but I feel overwhelmed right now! What source of ammonia can I use if I do a fishless cycle? How long does it usually take to cycle with no fish? Thank you so much if you have made it this far!!!
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Old 10-09-2011, 01:16 AM   #2 
TL1000RSquid
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: NY
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoneyFish View Post
My boss gave me a tank that she was done using. She told me it was a 20 gallon with all of the stuff to go along with it. When I went to pick it up, I measured it and found out it was a 29 gallon! Yay! But the filter is pretty old and icky looking so I'm going to get a new one.

So I have never had a tank this large (I know it's not huge, but I'm used to 5 or 10 gallon tanks!). I don't even know where to start. Should I do a fishless cycle? I plan on getting some kuhli loaches, corycats, platys, harlequin rasboras, neon tetras, some ghost shrimp, and maybe a female betta. Does that sound like a group that would be ok? Anything else I could put in there or would that be overstocking?

What size heater do I need? 100watt? Any brands you would recommend? I have the Elite 25 and 50 in my 5 and 10 gallon tanks right now and love them. What about a filter? What size would I need? Brands you would recommend? Do I need to baffle it for these type of fish?

I know I need sand substrate for the loaches and corycats. Is sand hard to work with? I know you have to stir it occasionally to prevent gas bubbles and it can be a pain to rinse when you first get it. Is there a brand anyone would recommend? How much would I need for 29 gallons? Can you plant live plants in sand?

I know that is a lot of questions, but I feel overwhelmed right now! What source of ammonia can I use if I do a fishless cycle? How long does it usually take to cycle with no fish? Thank you so much if you have made it this far!!!
Your stocking sounds alright.

On my 29 gallon I'm running an aquaclear 50 and aquaclear 20, could get away with just the 50 running but you can't have to much filtration. Heat I have a marineland 150w I like it, its easy to read the temp settings, I think 100w are usually rated upto 30 gallons but its usually only $2-3 more for the 150's. By baffle do you mean a prefilter? Not needed but useful if your going to have plants.

For sand you can buy pool filter sand which is usually pretty clean and cheap, I've also used caribsea black sand which is kinda pricey like $25 for 20 pounds. My local fish store sells sand in various colors for $3 for 5lbs or $17ish for 20 or 25lbs which is very clean I didn't even rinse it but I don't recall the brand. You can also use playsand from home depot or lowes which is $4 for 50lbs but the stuff is so dirty I prefer to buy pool or real fish sand. I prefer sand to gravel its easier to keep clean stuff sits on top of the sand and can be siphoned off the surface no vacuuming, add some malaysian trumpet snails and they keep the sand stirred for you. My sand tanks are all planted, java ferns, val's, banana plants all grow fine on their own in sand, with more nutrient needy plants you can use root tabs.

fishless cycling usually takes about 4 weeks, I throw a frozen shrimp in a stocking for my ammonia source, you can also use fish food, or pure ammonia.

If you have old filter media from an established tank you can speed up the cycle running it in the new tank.
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