Monday, January 12, 2015

Rack: Dual 10g Setup

I haven't been feeling too well lately, maybe I'm coming down with a cold, but I was able to devote sometime during the weekend to setup a new tank and complete by dual 10G rack setup.

Both tanks are sitting on one of those stainless steel wire shelf (available from HomeDepot or any home important stores) with a custom cut piece of 1/2" plywood to evenly reinforce the stand.

Tank: 10 Gallon Rimless 
Filtration: Eheim 2213
Heater: Eheim 'Jager' 50Watt
Substrate: ADA Aquasoil - Amazonia

Step 1: Preparation

I start off by giving the tank a nice cleaning. My goal is to tint the back piece of glass of this tank so a nice cleaning with gloves to prevent fingerprint marks and oil from developing on the glass is required. I bought this tank from a local store in SF for a great price. This tank has curved fronts, but still sexy and for the price I bought it for is a major steal. Overall, tank costed me $20 which is really cheap for a rimless tank.

Step 2: Inspection

I turned the tank backside facing up to closely inspect the surface. I wanted to make sure that the surface was well prepared and ready for tint application. I decided to only use water for the tint (suppose to use water + soap) because I didn't want to risk soap residue getting into the tank and cause issues in the future.

Step 3: Application

Tint is carefully measured and cut to size. The tint is tricky to cut because window tint (the type I'm using) is sized for large windows. It's easy if you already have the measuring equipment but could prove tricky if you don't as cutting straight lines could prove challenging.  The tint was harder to apply because I wasn't using the soap method, but overall, I'm happy with the look and the outcome.

Step 4: Position

After applying the tint and drying the excess water, I positioned the tank into the allotted space on the rack.  It took awhile to get the perfect measurement from floor to tank top because I wanted to make waterchange as easy as possible, and in the past, I've always positioned my tanks so low to the floor that made siphoning water is impossible. This is a good thing to remember and must be accounted for when setting up tank on racks.

Step 5: Position take 2

I had to remove the top tank to position the light for the bottom tank. I had a stroke of genius and managed to hook the light mounting legs backwards and apply hooks to them to hold into place. This allows me to hang the light securely and safety on the rack. This hook method allows me to more easier remove the light for maintenance in the future and also hang the light further up as to prevent algae from forming I also took this opportunity to reposition the light rack to accommodate for the filters, CO2 and electrical plugs.

Step 6: Condition - Bacteria

The following 3 steps are conditioning steps that most successful shrimp keepers do to ensure their substrate is enriched to ensure long term success in shrimp breeding.

Drops seen on top are droplets of Revive Vita, a proprietary product designed and created by my friend, ShrimpyDaddy, given to me to cycle my tanks faster and provide long term successful with shrimp keeping. Revive Vita will give tank/substrate and supercharged start. In my previous experience with starting tanks with Revive Vita, I've been able to cycle a tank using ADA AS Amazonia in 2 week (pretty quick for anyone who knows how long it usually takes to cycle ADA AS).

Step 7: Condition - Minerals and Traces

In this stage of the setup, I'm applying minerals and trace elements to the base layer of the tank. I'm using Revive Minerals and Revive Vivace for my minerals and trace needs. Revive Minerals and Revive Vivace isn't only useful during setup, all my tanks are dosed weekly with these products to ensure shrimps are provided all the necessary nutrients they require to develop healthy shells.

Step 8: Condition - Bacteria Food

Given that you have bacteria ready to go, you need to remember you'll need to supply a food soruce for these bacteria. Because Revive Vita is comprised of many types of bacteria, we need to met the food demands for these bacterias.  Revive Sinewy S (powdered form) is sprinkled evenly on the base. Sinewy Cereal S product designed to be used as a food for your substrate.  What??  Food for substrate??... ya.. right..... NOPE, this is true. Think of a well established tank as a closed eco-system. You're keeping many more living things inside your tanks than just shrimps alone. A healthy substrate means you will have a healthy team of decomposers which in turns will mean you tank will break down wastes more efficiently and prevent those random colony collapse many folks experience.

Step 9: Fill

Time for the tank to be filled with substrate. The tank is filled in a sloping manner. I have the tank as 6cm in the front sloping to 8cm in the back. After the substrate compacts, I'll be left with 4cm and 6cm, respectively. 

Why Slope? - Sloping a substrate is a great way to ensure you have the ideal setup for taking photos of your shrimps in the future. Sloping and moving the substrate becomes impossible once shrimps are moved into the tank. It's always best to do sloping during the early setup stages.

Step 10: Flush

Now that the tank is all setup, it's time to fill and flush. ADA Aquasoil series has a lot dust during the initial setup. This means you'll need to flush the tank a few times to clear up the murky water. After the subsequent flushes, the tank will be crystal clear and cycling can start.

Filters all hooked up and equipment plugged in. The tank will be cycling in 82-86F temp for the next few weeks. Remember how Revive Vita contains many strains of bacteria? Well, these stains of bacteria do best in warmer waters. They're activated in warmer waters so this should be considered the most important step.

REMEMBER: Add Activated Carbon to your filter for the 1st week to absorb harmful substances leaching out of the substrate. This will also help your cycle. 

Thank you for reading.

Will update when tank is cycled!!

Cheers ^.^

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