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Old 11-16-2011, 03:16 PM   #1 
RillC
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Got a new tank - recommendations for setup?

I was given a divided 5.5 gallon tank as an early birthday present. My two boys will be going in there from their .5 gallon tanks once it is set up. The divider is 2 layers of black plastic mesh and should make it harder for them to see each other and I'm considering silk plants to further block the view. It came with a heater and filter as well as a stand. I'm planning to go bare bottom on this tank since it's worked well for my boys so far.

I'm looking for ideas of decorations and how to set this tank up. I haven't worked with anything larger than my .5 gallon tanks before. I'll be testing the heater once I get it cleaned out and ready.
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Old 11-16-2011, 04:40 PM   #2 
Pataflafla
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If you're going to go bare bottom, it might be best for you to get silk plants with a heavy base to keep them firmly in place and not floating everywhere.

Most of the lighter, aquarium specific plants are designed to be buried in some sort of substrate, so bare bottom is a lot harder with those. I have noticed a little more influx with plants with suction cup bottoms, which are awesome.
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Old 11-17-2011, 02:19 PM   #3 
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oh, just had an idea!
What if you got some little cups and used some gravel or stone to weight the plants in that. The cups could be removed when needed to be cleaned. I've seen that done with live plants, why not fake ones too?
I also found a few plastic ones from petsmart that have room to weight the bottom, a few glass stones work nicely.
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Old 11-19-2011, 01:50 PM   #4 
RillC
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That was a good idea about the weighted plants. Went looking for decorations today, but it seems near impossible to find what I'm looking for around here. There was a beautiful blue and purple plant of just the right size, but it was plastic. Might work for my crowntail, but not for the veiltail who is the tricky one. All the silk plants of the right size had sharp plastic spikes near the base and the hiding places all had really rough edges.

Question: I have some smooth aquarium river stones so would it be possible to patch them together with aquarium sealant and make my own decoration?

Also, I've been reading here that a 5.5 gallon may not be big enough to sustain a cycle so how long after I get this tank set up can I add the fish? I want them to be safe in there so if this tank is not likely to cycle, what would be the water change schedule?
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Old 11-19-2011, 06:29 PM   #5 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RillC View Post
That was a good idea about the weighted plants. Went looking for decorations today, but it seems near impossible to find what I'm looking for around here. There was a beautiful blue and purple plant of just the right size, but it was plastic. Might work for my crowntail, but not for the veiltail who is the tricky one. All the silk plants of the right size had sharp plastic spikes near the base and the hiding places all had really rough edges.

Question: I have some smooth aquarium river stones so would it be possible to patch them together with aquarium sealant and make my own decoration?

Also, I've been reading here that a 5.5 gallon may not be big enough to sustain a cycle so how long after I get this tank set up can I add the fish? I want them to be safe in there so if this tank is not likely to cycle, what would be the water change schedule?
5.5 is big enought to sustain a cycle - I cannot see why any tank is too small. That idea with the pebbles and making your own sounds like it could work to me.
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Old 11-19-2011, 09:42 PM   #6 
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I have seen people use river rocks in a formation to make decoration for their tank :)

I would think some of the river rocks decoration, natural colored gravel, a pleasant background and some green plants would be nice! Can you find some Marina Silk Plants? I have a bunch of them, they work well and look natural. I got mine at Pets Unlimited. Marina Silk Plants Variety Pack
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Old 11-26-2011, 07:14 PM   #7 
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Well, I went back for that blue and purple plant and a silk plant. I've got the tank set up and everything , but I'm not sure if the filter is working. It isn't doing anything even though it's plugged in. Is it not working, placed too high, or what? The filter/ heater side is where my veiltail is going and the crowntail will have the right side. What do you think?
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Old 11-27-2011, 04:04 AM   #8 
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Is there any water coming out of the filter? If there isn't or its very minimal, it probably isn't working. Try putting it a little further down or try a different outlet - I know you can change. The outlet options on my filter which comes in very handy, perhaps this is something you'd like to try?
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Old 11-27-2011, 07:54 AM   #9 
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Nothing was coming out of the filter and the heater doesn't seem to be working either. I tested the extension cord and it works. The outlet I used has been used before so I know it works. It's maintaining 72 degrees so far, just like the water the fish are currently in, but I would like to get everything to work.
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Old 11-27-2011, 10:23 AM   #10 
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thats a submersabile filter.. So push it way down & it will also cut down on the flow your fish experiences. Also I had one similar & there was a plastic piece on the bottom of the media that needs to be removed.

If your heater is also not coming on then you have an issue with your power cource though.
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