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Discussion in 'Beginner's Corner' started by HenrySheehan, Feb 2, 2017.

  1. HenrySheehan

    HenrySheehan Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Hi everyone
    I'm new to all this so I'm looking to pick some brains.
    I'm building a new house over here in Ireland. Instead of putting a double sided stove in I decided I'm going to put in a 150cm×50cm×60cm double sided aquarium. (Who needs a stove!)
    I'm starting the build weather permitting in the next two weeks so it'll be a few months yet before I actually get to start the tank.
    Anyhow I really like the Iwagumi style of aquascaping and this is the style I hope to establish. I like this beach head style but as it'll be double sided I'm not too sure how I'd work it. Also like the 300g tank james from the green machine did. Reciprocal I think was the name of it.

    So any advice ye have for a guy who never even owned a goldfish bowl would be appreciated.

    Thanks again folks.

    Screenshot_20170201-002142.png

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  2. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Henry

    Welcome to ASW can you complete you Profile and add in your Country and Location please.
    You have set your standards very high starting of with double sided Iwagumi I don't think any member has done that.
    Building a now home is going to be very time consuming and if you have any spare time for relaxation I suggest you research as much Iwagumi as possible. Here are a few starters for you.
    http://www.thegreenmachineonline.com/blog/iwagumi-aquascapes-introduction/
    http://fish-etc.com/aquascaping-main/create-an-iwugami-aquascape
    http://www.practicalfishkeeping.co.uk/features/articles/how-to-set-up-an-iwagumi-aquarium
    https://www.google.com.au/search?q=...UKEwjQkPa42PLRAhVIErwKHSS7CikQsAQITA&dpr=1.56

    I suggest you bookmark and where possible print out the useful information.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  3. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Henry can you read my reply above?

    If so post a reply Yes if you cannot come back to our PM.

    Also start another thread in
    The Aqua Lounge

    And just write test and see what happens.

    I will be back in about 10-15min

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  4. HenrySheehan

    HenrySheehan Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Good morning/afternoon everbody
    For my substrate I plan on using the ada system. My local store stocks Jbl but I dont know much about the brand and I want to give my tank the best possible chance of succeeding. Any advice on the ada system and which products I'd require. I plan on keeping 2 maybe at a stretch 3 different variety of plants which are fairly easy to keep and maintain.
    Also got my water tested yesterday and it came back at a ph level of 7.4.

    Any advice on any of the above.

    Henry (busy at work!) Sheehan

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  5. Shane P.

    Shane P. Moderator Staff Member

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    Cool Henry! Nice to meet you. Welcome to ASW! You will end up learning a bunch! I have never attempted an iwagumi scape before, but I do know that they need high light, CO2 and proper water column dosing. Also, you may be needing many heavy stones. Unless you want to pay hundreds of dollars for seiryu I suggest visiting your local garden super center and choosing a couple of stones from there. A great source of inspiration for iwagumi is the ADA view YouTube channel. Simply look up ADA iwagumi and you should find some!

    Good luck, keep scaping!
    Shane


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  6. Zeus

    Zeus Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Hi Henry, and welcome.

    Might be worth getting your Water Hardness checked, may effect which plants to go for, also Very Soft water can make controlling the waters [CO2] levels tricky.

    Plus well worth getting a dimable light, as iwagumi scape have a low plant bio mass ( a lot of hardscape and open space) which does make them harder to control the algae and controlling the light intensity is the best way to control the aglae, plus if you can dim the lights very low extended viewing also ;).

    Going down the ADA AS route - all the additives lack any hard evidence that they do anything, same with the Power sand, many just use the ADA AS alone.

    ShadowMacs and J.Arts podcasts well worth as listen to also Aquascaping Internet Radio Show/Podcast

    Zeus
     
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  7. HenrySheehan

    HenrySheehan Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Thanks guys, great replys. In relation to Shane's post, I see on the green machine website that they sell seiryu stone for under 10 euro per kg. For the size of my tank how many kg approx would you think I'd need.
    Hi Zeus, I did get my water checked and it's definitely not soft water that I'll be using.
    In relation to the low plant bio mass can you explain this more please. Im assuming that you mean because I'll only have a low carpet of plant that that's where the low bio mass comes from. Is that correct and if so will adding a shoal of fish not help with the bio mass.
    Interesting point about ADA. Is it just clever marketing then?

    Just to add, it's great to be on a forum where ppl actually take the time to give advice. I've found that usually ppl just welcome you to their forum but never actually give any advice

    Henry (finished work!) Sheehan.

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  8. HenrySheehan

    HenrySheehan Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Going to listen to that podcast in a few minutes Zeus. #bedtimepodcast

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  9. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Hello Henry

    Its great to see you here looks like you can post replies successfully now.

    My only suggestion now is do as much research as you possibly can and then ask plenty of questions someone here at ASW will certainly be able help you.

    Do not buy any thing at the moment no matter what the LFS tells you, ask here first.

    Another option Iwagumi style of Aquascaping can be done low tech but you do not have the wide choice of plants then it could become a "Like" not actually an Iwagumi.

    Iwagumi is just rocks and plants BUT the choice and placement of rocks and plants must be correct otherwise you end up with just another rocky planted tank.

    I would hunt every garden suppler you can and select the rocks (they will be a lot cheaper) plus they will have a bigger range to choose from, rather than buying them unseen. I have recently read that there artificially made rocks suitable for Iwagumi but they have been known to cause water concerns.

    Re your plants do you have a wide choice of suitable plants locally or do they have to be imported if so I have a contact in the UK.

    Keith:cat::cat:


     
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  10. HenrySheehan

    HenrySheehan Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Morning guys.
    That's exactly it Keith, I'm getting as much info as possible before I take the plunge. It'll be next September/October I'd say before I start to purchase. I can buy plants etc here but what the quality is like I don't know, I'll possibly have to bring it in from the UK. I see a lot of ppl using the 1-2 Growing plants on YouTube?
    In regards the rocks, would my local garden centre have the type of rocks suitable for a iwagumi? I can't imagine they'd have ever even heard of dragon/seiryu rock. A quick Google may be required there

    In the above replys one of the guys was on about needing a high powered light while another suggested getting a dimmer put on it, any thoughts on this?
    Thanks

    Henry (on the way to work) Sheehan.



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  11. Shane P.

    Shane P. Moderator Staff Member

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    I would take the time to setup a little test tank first, around 30L. This way you get to experiment and test before you move on to a huge and rather expensive system. It will give you the experience and tools necessary to properly understand how to scape and setup your tank. I have a 120cm aquarium which I have not setup yet for this very reason. I got it back in November or October of 2016, and am waiting till I feel confident about scaping it!


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  12. HenrySheehan

    HenrySheehan Aspiring Aquascaper

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    When everything is set up and running as a high tech tank will it cost much to run? I'll also might run a RO system.

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  13. Shane P.

    Shane P. Moderator Staff Member

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    I would not think so. You can reuse most basic supplies in the larger tank. The main benefit is that it should give you a good base to learn. If it is a stress to budget, don't worry. You need not do it!

    There are other forms of practice. I would think about potential stocking, hardscape materials, tank layout and all later. I would focus on tank size/filtration/heating plans for now!

    Shane
     
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  14. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Henry

    Forget the variety name just see what they have and the cost.

    When you are deciding what plants remind me then Re UK plants.

    Starting of Low Tech is an excellent idea learn the basics first.

    Costing will depend on the quality of the units you buy, cheapies will have to be replaced more costing. Shawn might be able to give you an idea of costings plus running costs.

    When you finally calculate all the costs you might get a shock but remember you have bought all quality units and no hobby is cheap.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  15. HenrySheehan

    HenrySheehan Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Well that's it, buy cheap buy twice. I intend on going with a jbl canister filtration system. Will buy bigger than required so it's not running on full blast. What do ye think of that?
    I don't want to see a heater in the tank so would hope to get one that will fit on the tube from the canister back to the tank. Again what do ye think. My house will be airtight and very well insulated. There won't be much deviation in relation to the temps in the house.
    The size of the tank needs to be as is for where I'm putting it.
    At the end of the day I'm looking to use 2 or 3 easy to keep plants. As regards fish type as Shane was saying I haven't really thought about it other than there being a shoal of small fish.

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  16. Zeus

    Zeus Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Stone - its not the amount in Kg you need to know, first you need to know your tank size, then you need to get the right pieces for the scape you plan. Dont order them over the net. Getting the right peices size and shape is key to doing an iwagumi scape. Good peices can be hard to find. Much can be got over the internet but rocks and wood need to be seen personally.

    Excellent (y) esp if planning an iwagumi scape.


    Depends on chioce off lights, T5 or LEDs. temp off room size off tank etc etc

    As for the RO - trying to make your life harder than it needs to be.


    Lights can be low tech to high tech. Some LED lights are cheap have low outputs limited spectrum and no adjustment for intensity. Others like Kessils are high outputs with the spectrum and intensity are adjustable. Light is your friend and number one enemy esp with iwagumi, so you need fine control of the intensity, enough to get your carpet to grow compact and not long reaching stems, then not too high an intensity so your beautiful carpet gets covered in aglae. Cost me over £1000 for my lights. T5 can be purchased which are also dimable ( Shadowmac has one) and T5 are still regarded by many as the best chioce for the quality off the spectrum they give.
    Good thread here about T5 with pics showing the spectrum and how it changes the look off the tank.

    Iwagumi is HARD, not the best place to start for most. Many fail to get beautiful carpets, algae running wild. Best suited to the experienced aquascaper. I'm not trying to put you off. Just need to do your home work well. You will need the knowledge of an experienced aquascaper with all the issues of doing iwagumi, and how to control your eco system to get the look you are after and keep it looking like that. But what one man can do another can also do;)
     
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  17. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Edit Looks like I was writing this when Zeus was posting his reply

    Henry
    Excellent self advice.

    I have always had Eheim Canisters cost more but you are buying a quality unit.

    I have always ran two heaters at the back corners, its a lot safer that way when one breaks down which they do the other is there as a back up. In my opinion you will get a far better even temperature control. I always carried a spare heater quickly replaced busted heater.

    Only advice is get the biggest you can if not you will be looking for a bigger tank very soon.

    All plants are easy if you know what you are doing and have the correct plants for your conditions. eg plants that require a High Tech setup will not grow in a Low Tech setup.

    That could depend on availability also consider common red shrimps with suitable fish.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  18. HenrySheehan

    HenrySheehan Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Fantastic information cheers. Finding out about everything and becoming more knowledgeable is addictive and I intend on feeding that addiction. I've a lot of stuff to look into thanks to all the advice ye have given over the last few days so I need to go off now and look into all of the above.
    Just on a side note before I go, I did kind of think that an ro system might just complicate things but that was what the guy in the shop was on about. Not sure how much they know about aquascaping cause their show doesn't have anything remotely related to aquascaping. Good to know for future conversations.

    Thanks again everyone. Big help.

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  19. Zeus

    Zeus Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Profits :whistle:

    If you strip the water over all its minerals, you will have to add some back in ( cost again), esp if going down the CO2 route. So RO has its place (mainly in marine) but most freashwater tanks are fine without the need of RO just an added expense at each WC (water change). The plants adapted to your water, after all they have been doing it for millions of years.

    was thinking off going down the RO route myself, after lots of reading, decided it wasnt worth the cost or necessary for my project, esp since i got a 500L tank

    BTW I'm the newbie round here and new to aquascaping, took on a big project and not even got water in the tank Yet (but close, in the dry Start stage ATM), its been hard with lots off hills to climb, lots of reading , watching vids, posting questions. so I'm just passing on some off the stuff I've picked up, I've little experiance. Be careful of the u tube clips that show the start of an Iwagumi scape with no follow up ! why no follow up ? Failure or not worthing of showing.

    Think the folk who can appreciate an Iwagumi scape scape the most are those who have tried or have done one.

    Take your time and buy nothing for some time. It will pay off in the end. My plans have changed so many times as I gained the background knowledge to have half a chance.

    The general outout of your filter which is advised by most aquascapers is the x10 rule for high tech tank. So for say 50litre tank the output should be 500l per hour.
     
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  20. HenrySheehan

    HenrySheehan Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Lots to learn alright. I feel like I've given myself at least 10 months to really get an understanding of the subject & I'm enjoying it.
    Like I said, I don't think my local supplier knows much about aquascaping so I'll have to take what he tells me with a pinch of salt. He seems certain that I'd need a ro system as well but even after just a month of research I had a feeling that wasn't so.
    This forum will be my main go to area with any questions. Is this your first attempt at a tank this size Zeus? Have you a build thread I could follow, would be very interested to see how you get on.


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