180 Gallon Build

Rythmyc

So I have recently been pretty active in these forums, and found an aquarium I would like to share with everyone as I get it setup.

This will be a long on going project.

However, I definitely would like input and help getting it stocked, decorated, and planted.

Equipment:

BDBS Substrate

FX4 Filter, with Biomax, Purigen media

FX6 Filter, with Biomax, Mechanical media

2x Ehiem 300w heaters

Maxspect 230 Gyre x2

Coralife Turbo Twist 12x 36w UV Sterilization

Beamswork DA FSPEC LED Aquarium Light Freshwater Full Spectrum

Beamswork DA LED Aquarium Light

Current stock:

6 BoesemanI Rainbow

5 Clown Loaches

5 Electric Blue Acara

2 Angelfish

1 Black Ghost Knife

1 Rainbow Shark

1 Redfin Prochildous (Flagtail Prochildous)

Current Plants:

3 Anubias

1 Java Fern

1 Amazon Sword

4 Ludwigia Repens (Rubin)

I'm looking forward to sharing this experience with everyone!

EDIT: Updated current equipment, will continue to update with stock and plants as I get them.

EDIT 2: Updated equipment, and current stock. Will update as more stock is added

EDIT 3: Another equipment, and stock update. Along with a plant update.

EDIT 4: Completed stock list, updated equipment

EDIT 5: Edited title to reflect new tank, updated equipment, updated plants

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tyguy7760

what are the dimensions of the tank.

Since you are going the planted route I probably won't be much help but it's going to be fun to stock I'm sure!
 

Rythmyc

8' Long, 17" Deep, 23" Tall
 

Nataku

Nice find!
If you are going planted you may want to try a dirted tank. That is a layer of treated top soil covered by sand. Look up 'mineralizing soil' to see some guides on how its done.
 

tyguy7760

Well since you are going with angels you'll want centerpieces that aren't that aggressive and like warmer water. And since you are going a planted tank you'll want fish that don't have a rep of being very hard on plants. Here is something I'd consider

4 Angels
5-6 Red Head Geophagus (tapajos)
10 BoesemanI Rainbows
10 Diamond Tetras
1 Rhino Pleco
15 or so Sterbai/Brochis/Aeneus Corydoras (just 1 species but any of them would be good)

You could do more but that's what I'd start off with an go from there. Another good centerpiece fish that would do well with angels and geos would be a nice big severum. Severums though have a rep of being rough on plants. Though many will leave them alone entirely. Me personally my severums have always demolished my plants but they are a very rewarding fish that may leave them alone if you keep them fed with plenty of planty foods. If you wanted to try one or two I think you still have room with that stock to add them to it.

Some other centerpiece fish you can consider that have been plant friendly in my experience or I've seen other very experienced fish keepers say are good with plants would be....

Keyhole Cichlids
Most dwarf cichlids (rams, apistos, laetacaras, kribs, etc)
Gouramis (should be fine with your angels because of your length but I wouldn't do a ton)
Guianacaras (bandit cichlids)

Sorry for another post on this but there is actually a pretty good convo going on over at MFK right now about plants and cichlids. It should give you some good ideas
 

Rythmyc

Sorry for another post on this but there is actually a pretty good convo going on over at MFK right now about plants and cichlids. It should give you some good ideas
I've been doing some looking around. I'm extremely interested in keeping some knife fish. More specific, I'm looking at Glass Knife, as they are peaceful and will allow schools of other peaceful fish as well. I'm not sure if they are compatible with Angel's or not, but definitely willing to work around the Glass Knife.
 

tyguy7760

MFK has a great knife fish section. I'd look around there for some good general info. Not a lot of folks on this forum have experience with these guys.
 

Rythmyc

Looks like I'm upgrading! I originally posted about a 160 build, but I ended up getting a 175 Bowfront. I'm picking it up this evening! I'm beyond excited to get this up and running.

I already have an FX6 ordered from Amazon to filter this beast. It'll be here tomorrow. I'm going to pick up some BDBS this evening.
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tyguy7760

Love the bowfronts...congrats
 

Rythmyc

I'll post pictures of the actual tank while I'm helping break it down to move it this evening. Picture I posted was one I found on Google. It has some scratches on the inside of the glass, but feel repairable. So that will be my first project.

Build will start next week, as I work weekends nights. Expect this post to update much more often as I get it going
 

Dawn Michele

Congratulations!!! Can't wait to see picture's!!!
 

Rythmyc

Currently ordered from Amazon. I still need to get a couple heaters. Would 2 300 Watt Heaters be sufficient? The room it will be located in will be an average of 75 degrees.
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Rythmyc

Okay, so it's late and I just got it home. I'll get it setup and take pictures tomorrow

Not the best pictures, and the top is off right now. She's home though! I need to pick up the soil, minerals, sand and heaters. The filter will be here today, and you'll notice the glass is scratched. I have some Cerium Oxide coming that will be here tomorrow. I plan on trying to get those scratches out as well as I can.
Luckily none of them are deep. You can't even feel them.
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Rythmyc

FX6 is installed, and the Cerium Oxide came in today. I'll get the Substrate Wednesday. If I get the scratches out by Wednesday, I'll get the Substrate rinsed and dumped in. Unfortunately I'll have to order new lights. The current one is stuck in the blue spectrum. Unless someone knows how to fix the remote on Beamswork lighting?

Assuming I get scratches out and substrate Wednesday, looks like she could be getting wet this week. Should be able to start stocking in 2-3 weeks, using media from my cycled 55.
 

Nataku

That is a beautiful tank. Cant wait to see it filled in.
Sorry, I don't know how to help you on the light issue but contacting beamswork should hopefully garner results.
 

Rythmyc

Decided to cancel the order on the Substrate I ordered, and just go with BDBS. I'm going to pick it up today, get it rinsed and in the tank tonight. I need to find a good size piece of Driftwood. Anyone know where bigger pieces are that I can order online?
 

tyguy7760

ebay...you can find some good pieces there
 

Rythmyc

Filled it with water to make sure there BDBS was cleaned enough, and ensure the FX6 functions properly. Still have some work to do on the glass and need heaters
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TexasDomer
Tagging you because I respect your input on stocking.

Large community
1 black ghost knife fish
5 clown loches
3 severums
1 rainbow shark
1 flagtail prochilidous
6 bosemanI rainbowfish
2 Angel fish

This is my current stocking list. Looking for input if I'm able to add more, and suggestions on what.
 

TexasDomer

The black ghost knife can get longer than your tank is wide. I personally would not keep a fish that is longer than my tank is wide, but he may not get that long anyway. Keep an eye on him, and in a few years, you may need a wider tank. Awesome fish though! Be sure that he is getting fed - they're nocturnal and should be fed at night.

I might personally go with another species of rainbowfish, one that has a wider temp range.

This build looks awesome, and I'm glad you're taking advantage of its size and getting some cool big fish! Super jealous, I really want an 8 foot tank.
 

Rythmyc

The black ghost knife can get longer than your tank is wide. I personally would not keep a fish that is longer than my tank is wide, but he may not get that long anyway. Keep an eye on him, and in a few years, you may need a wider tank. Awesome fish though! Be sure that he is getting fed - they're nocturnal and should be fed at night.

I might personally go with another species of rainbowfish, one that has a wider temp range.

This build looks awesome, and I'm glad you're taking advantage of its size and getting some cool big fish! Super jealous, I really want an 8 foot tank.
Ended up not getting the 8' Tank. I got a 175 Bowfront. L 72.5 x W 29.5 x H 24 are the dimensions.
 

TexasDomer

I like that one better. Shorter, yes, but wider, which is good!
 

Rythmyc

I like that one better. Shorter, yes, but wider, which is good!
Exactly. Which is why I went with the stocking I did. Do you see room for anything else?
 

TexasDomer

I'm a conservative stocker, so I would just adding more schooling fish of the same species (or another species, but larger schools of both).
 

Rythmyc

I'm a conservative stocker, so I would just adding more schooling fish of the same species (or another species, but larger schools of both).
Noted, I'll stick with that, and see how it looks. Adding in more of a school if needed.
 

Rythmyc

Just a quick update. I cleaned up the glass, but found more deep scratches than I had realized. It still looks tons better, and is more than acceptable. I'll post pictures later today.

I got a heater, Eheim. Claims it's rated for up to 250 Gallons. So I only got the one and put it near my output to help spread. I'll monitor my temps for a couple days, and keep an eye on how hard it's working to keep temperature. I'll get another if needed.

Also ordered the lights, which will be here Friday. I had people tell me there's no way the Beamswork are going to be enough for even low light planting. I'll not prepared to spend what they are suggesting, even for low light. I'll get a couple plants, see if they flourish. If not. I'll go the fake route for now. I'll switch later.

I'm going to try out Purigen. I ordered a 500ml bottle, which they claim 100ml treats 100 Gallons. The 500 barely filled a single bag. So I ordered a liter bottle. This way I'm using the same filtration for my QT as my main tank. I'm trying to keep them as close to each other as possible.

I put that filter on my 55 Gallon to cycle, with nothing but bio balls, so I can get my 175 and QT cycled with little issues. Everything is coming along nicely. Looking forward to getting this going!

Well, I already know I'm going to need at least another heater. Rated from 180-250 Gallons, hmph. I knew better than to trust manufacturers suggestions.

I've only seen this poor thing shut off briefly, then turn right back on because it's struggling to keep up. I do like that it's able to keep it at temp by itself without over heating issues though. So the second one is to help keep it running longer, and a back up in case one fails.
 

TexasDomer

For lighting, DIY is a great, cheap option that can give you the amount of lighting you need to grow any plant.
 

Rythmyc

I've been correlating with another forum on lighting. We've come to the conclusion that another of the same fixture would be sufficient for low tech plants that I'm planning.

So that will be my plan!
 

Rythmyc

New light fixture comes in tomorrow, so I'll post new pictures with it. The second heater definitely helped out. I unplugged the first one until I got the second so it wouldn't just stay on. It takes awhile to warm up that much water, but both turned off for a couple hours before one turned on. I have one by the input, and one by the output. Opposite sides of the aquarium obviously.

I'll say I'm happy with the power of these two heaters though. I have been using Fluval heaters, but since these were rated for higher volume, I decided to try them out. I don't like the adjustment dial. The heaters need to be just about fully submersed, and the dial is extremely rigid. So adjusting the temp is tough underwater.
 

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KRL

Looking forward to seeing this progress!
 

vikingkirken

If you're worried about the lights being sufficient, you can always stock with epiphytes like Java fern and anubias. Attaching them to driftwood or decor will bring them up closer to the lights, where the PAR is higher.
 

Rythmyc

If you're worried about the lights being sufficient, you can always stock with epiphytes like Java fern and anubias. Attaching them to driftwood or decor will bring them up closer to the lights, where the PAR is higher.
Those are exactly the type of plants I've been looking into, thanks for the input!

New lights came in today!
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Rythmyc

So, it looks like this is what I have left to do.

Go over the glass again (The new lights brought out more surface scratches I wasn't able to notice with the other one).

Get bulkhead caps for the overflows so I can fill it completely

Go over the entire tank and thoroughly clean everything, to ensure no contaminates remain from the previous owner. This includes removing the substrate, and rinsing it again. I found some areas of the tank I missed cleaning the first time.

I have media cycling in my established 55 that I will add to this filter for an instant cycle. So once I get everything cleaned up, I'll start stocking.

I should have the entire tank cleaned up this week, and stocking starting next week.

TexasDomer

What do you recommend as the order I get my stock with the current plan? This has something I need more experience in still.
 

AngelTheGypsy

I personally like to start with schooling fish. You can cycle your tank stronger to get more at once, and you get rid of the “empty tank” feeling faster. Then you can add the single fish as you get them.
 

Rythmyc

Sounds like a plan! I think I'm going to go with the clown loaches to start off, then get the rainbows. Clown loaches sound like such an interesting fish, I had to have some in this aquarium
 

DarkOne

I had 3 clown loaches in a 30 gallon years ago. They were less than 2" when I got them and didn't know they got so big. When they were 4", I asked my LFS about them and they told me how big they got . Luckily, they were willing to buy them. They were a lot of fun to watch when they were little.
 

Rythmyc

I've heard, I love my cories. They are easily the most entertaining fish I have so far
 

DarkOne

Just a warning... They sleep in weird positions including on their backs so don't freak out when it happens. It took a while for me to get used to it when I saw them on their sides or back.
 

Rythmyc

Okay, so after doing some searching. I found a small project that won't slow down progress of the tank, but will make use of the overflows. I'm going to use the overflows as inputs for my FX6. Which should increase efficiency of the filter, as well as help keep sand out of it. Prolonging the life of the filter. I'll post pictures / video of how I set it up when I get it finished. I'm going to use the normal output of the filter, just move it to the center of the tank so the flow is distributed throughout the tank more evenly.

This should allow me to move the heaters inside of the overflows and help protect my loaches and knife as well.
 

Rythmyc

Just drained the tank completely, and plan to remove the sand in a bit. Ordered my bulk heads and screens for the overflow input. Those should be here Wednesday or Friday. I plan on taking the bulk heads to the hardware store and getting the fittings and adapters when I get them. I have dual overflow, so I'm going to take advantage of both of them and use a Y connector to my input.

After I get the Substrate out, I'm going to go back over the glass with Cerium Oxide again. Then do a deep clean of the overflows, which need the most attention.

Once I get it cleaned and refilled, I'm going to get some plants, and see how they do before I put my clown loaches in.

I should be finished with the set-up this week, and be able to start ordering stock next week assuming the plants flourish. Looking forward to getting the Clown Loaches into the tank! I'll post pictures of the tank once I get it cleaned and refilled, then again with plants, and as I stock.
 

Rythmyc

Cleaning is done. Going to refill, and get a few plants tomorrow. I'll post pictures after I get it planted. In the meantime, posting pictures of my established 55.
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