View Full Version : Some people do drugs,others set up fish tanks. 180G planout and buildup .

12-28-2015, 08:39 PM
Hello everyone, I'm Michael, an engineering college student from Israel with an addiction to wildlife in general, and especially fishtanks with a habbit of overthinking things and making dumb mistakes....and you may or may not have seen me panicking in another thread or two.

So long story short,recently I've made another mistake,this time an economic one.....and bought a new tank....a 180G tank.
why a mistake? well....lets just say it wasn't the most affordable thing to me at the moment....and i've tried to cancel the deal the day after but got rejected...oh well...guess im gonna end up canceling a holiday trip and setting up this tank after all....
and as it'll be a Discus based,mostly SA biotope with "peaceful" cichlids ....figured I'd share my experience here....and all tips and advice and feedback are welcome :)

The Tank:
4.6' length, 2.5 height and 2.1 feet width.
15 mm glass, plywood table.
should be delivered somewhere up to next Thursday.

The Gear:
JBL Crystalprofi E1901 canister filter - 4g for media, 502g/h pump.
x2 300W tetra heaters
x1 90G air/h air pump.
Aquael midnikai 80 canister filter,attached to a 9W UV-C JBL sterilizer. 1G of filter media and a 80G/H pump.
x2 T5 54W daylight tubes that will be hanging about 7 inches above the tank.
might add another 500G/h,5G media canister in the future.

The Design:
Actually,while browsing the web i ran into something alot alike to what im hopping to create:

a sandbed,about 2 inches deep,bunch of driftwood and plants outside the water on top of the tank,with few very though plants such as Valisneria and Hygrophila under the well lighted spots with a fertilizer ball burried under the roots.
i have yet to figure out what plants do i want/can keep above the tank.

The stock:
*10-12 Discus,a mixture of wilds and domestics. i currently have 4 wilds in QT that have just started eating,i hope by the time they get all well the tank would already be cycled....and the domestics i plan to bring in straight from the farm,trying to get them as sterile as it gets
*x6 Altum angels,F2, imported from Germany. they are said to arrive in up to 3 months,youngsters,about 8-9 inches tall.
*x2-3 Albino Dantums. locally bred.
*Geophagus species. not sure how many,3-5 properly unless i manage to find a couple....species im looking into are Surinamensis,Balzani,Tafajos and Daemon.
*an L number collection,most of which i already posses and they are wreaking havoc in an 80G planted tank....L85,L114,L46,L47,L200,l128,L134 and more.....

other species im looking into:
-Green Terror....i know,i know,some of you just jumped a little ouch of the chair wanting to punch me in the face,but if theres anything i've learned about a cichlids temper its that its a very individual thing with many factors,and that some fish dont always end up living up to the name. they dont go under the "peaceful" SA cichlids tag,but also not under the "highly aggressive" one.
if i was to try this, i'd it as small as i can and let it grow in the tank.gonna be really hard to give this idea up,its forever been one of my favorite freshwater fish...
-Firemouth and Elloti cichlids. 2 more "semi" aggresive cichlids that i've seen kept with fish such as geophagus and angels before....they dont grow too big,but being central american they prefer harder waters then the SA tank would be....
-Dwarf cichlids aka Apistogramas.....they're pretty,they're cool,they're relatively harmless and they'll give me a good reason to scatter and create some fancy caves around the tank....however,they instantly cancel out the chance to own a green acara who could swallow them whole....and they might get into nasty fights with firemouths and ellotis and lose,so these wont make it in the tank either.
-teacup stingray.....what? WHAT?....well,the tank seems big enough, the water parameters are similiar and there are plenty of examples on the web of discus,angels ,stingray and geophagus together....assuming the cichlids are near maximum size,and the ray isnt a too large one.
althought a ray would instantly shut down the chance of any smaller fish in the tank such as dwarf cichlids,cory cats and so on.

so now that ive presented the plan,here are a few questions:

first would be,how do you sterilize a fish?
the last thing i'd want is transport some sort of nasty thing from an old tank from the seller into this new fancy tank....
a QT i assume,and put them through hell with all sorts of meds,from antibiotics to anti parasite things?
the first creatures to enter the new tank are probably going to be some of the L numbers,they are hardy as hell...and i'd really love to avoid them bringing any sort of bioload with them from the tank theyre in right now.

the domestic discus i plan to order will be young adults,should i worry about any bullying from the fully grown,wild greens?
should i be worried about them not growing properly in a display tank with a bunch of other cichlids in it? even if its a 180G?

next,well,im open to any feedback about my plan for the tank....the stock....the gears....the desgin plan with the plants....
am really open for suggestions aswell,if any of you has an idea for a school of fish that wont harm the angels or discus,is SA and could live with the stock i plan and create some active movement in the tank....or an idea for some other peaceful SA cichlid i could add....or know some cool plants i could grow above the tank,and in the harsh,dark conditions in the tank....or any other tips,i'd really love to hear it all :)

12-29-2015, 11:19 AM
Wow, that's ambitious. I have no advice, you're planning something that's out of my league. But I wish you luck! Please post pics and share your journey - I LOVE huge fish tanks!

Luke in Phoenix
12-29-2015, 02:37 PM
Looks like a lot of fun! IMO there would be a lot of benefits to increasing the flow and size of the UV sterilizer on the tank. Especially since you have the flexibility of building it from scratch.

12-29-2015, 04:56 PM
I love the name of your thread:D. I had a previous account on Simply a while back before my current one. I forget my password . so I set the one I am now.
While I tell you this well my user name was "Discuholic"

I recommend to you to read a lot here in the forum.
I don't use antibiotics on QT unless is necessary.
I treat prophylactic for parasites most of us here do.
I recommend to watch the video on the beginners section even if you know a good amount already in general fish keeping is a good way to refresh, compare notes.
Sterilize a fish ? Learn How and When to use PP (potassium permanganate) this IMO.
be careful with skinless fish and smaller fish like tetras for that use a more holistic approach some of them don't take the recommend doses or none at all.

12-29-2015, 06:58 PM
Only thing I would suggest is larger filtration than can handle larger bio load, you plan to stock with a lot of fish and I can attest that my tank gets a full vacuum 3-4 times a week and the amount of poop that is generated is more than you think and I am under stocked also a higher watt UV I have 55w on my 240g the longer the exposure time the higher chance of it killing microbes so slower flow is to be remembered. Another thing is the 2'' sand bed why so thick? The less the better, you will have a easier time cleaning it and less issues with bacteria or gases forming, you can get away with 1/2 inch and weight down the plants till the root in. Just a few points that I encountered on my build.