I recently bought a 55 gallon aquarium setup off a friend who was moving. He hadn't had it running for the past year but he did have it running before then. I have a bag of aquarium accessories including a filter but I have not investigated exactly what I have just yet.
I am just looking for some advice from people who have more experience than I as to how I should proceed. I plan on doing an undergravel filter system with a submersion type power head combined with a power filter (the kind that hangs on the corner of the glass on the top) which is what I believe my buddy had, I may need to replace.
I have always liked the idea of doing a mix of sand and gravel to create a sandy gravel base as opposed to one or the other. In doing that though, won't that affect the performance of my under gravel filter? Once you take out the porosity of the gravel I'd assume it wouldn't work as well.
I've toyed with the idea of doing a mix of live and plastic/silk plants to create a more realistic environment for my tank. What special considerations do I need to take into account if I decide to go with live plants? Will they survive in a mixed gravel/sand base without substrate?
I am setting up my tank tomorrow and my thought was to buy the gravel/sand however I decide to do it and the heater and any filter media I need. I wanted to at least get the water in the tank and start cycling it through to get my balances right before I buy fish. What chemicals should I buy this early in the game to get my water ready for the next step?
I also want to have tiers of plants to create a more realistic and aesthetic environment. My first thought was to use flat rocks to create "shelves" with some sandy gravel and fake plants. Does this sound logical or is there a great risk of the rocks falling over and killing my fish? What have other people done in the past?
I want my tank to be a center point of my livingroom and a conversation piece for all who come to my home. Any help/advice/criticism would be greatly appreciated. Thank you all.
Starting My First 55 Gallon Aquarium
Discuss all topics related to freshwater and planted tanks.
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- Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2007 3:04 am
Brandon seems like an experienced aquarium guy and I have nothing more to offer except that I recently reversed the powerhead(actually the canister filter outflow)to push water down into the riser tube and up through the gravel. I'm thinking that if the water is filtered with a sponge filter over the powerhead intake before it is directed through the UG filter, basicly using the UG filter backwards, then you may avoid much of the crud that buildes up in the gravel. Nobody is replying to my post on the subject. Just something to think about. P