75 Gallon Pre-build

Gypsy13
  • #1
Ok. So I’m getting a 75 gallon tank.

I’m acquiring things I know I want like driftwood, sponge filters (have one just sitting in my 29), other things I know I want or need.

So. I want a dark substrate. I have albino corys 3, long fin leopard danio 1, giant mistake danio 1, White Cloud Mountain gold minnows 4, and 10-15 guppies (mostly males). A baby banana plant and one other that I’m not sure what it is. LFS just said I’d like it cause it has purple spots on the leaves. Feels sort of like a java fern but not quite? Anyway that’s what I have.

In my mind these guys will look good against a dark substrate. I’ve got a bag of Eco Complete for a sloped area at each enc of the aquarium for plants. I wanted black sand but may use the dark blue imagitarium gravel I’ve got. Opinions appreciated.

My LFS guy doesn’t like dark substrate. He says the whole aquarium is too dark then. Says light substrate pops. I want my fish and plants to pop. Opinions?

Thanks y’all.
 
fa4960
  • #2
My 2 cents....

For a heavy planted aquarium I think the dark substrates work well, i.e. carpets and dense plantation. For a less dense planted aquarium, low tech etc I personally prefer a lighter substrate as otherwise I find the whole aquarium too dark. In my own case I am very happy with my choice of a light substrate and I feel it complements the fish very well.
 
Dave125g
  • #3
I personally like a light substrate. Black sand is nice too however. Which ever way you go, go with sand because it is better for plants. Roots and runners grow better in sand then in gravel.
 
bitseriously
  • #4
I also like the look of light sand.
Agree with above about sand being preferable to gravel. I have two sand tanks and one with gravel, and definitely prefer the sand in terms of maintenance, though I have low light and low tech plants in all 3 and don't see a difference in how they grow one way or the other. In the sand tank, I use tabs under root feeding plants, since there's minimal circulation through the sand, but I don't see the need for tabs in the gravel tank as the ferts I add to the water column get down to the roots through the spaces between the gravel pieces.
IME, gravel needs more maintenance, esp in terms of vacuuming deep in the gravel, whereas with sand, all the detritus and physical waste stays on top of the sand where it's either broken down further, or re-suspended into the water column and picked up by the filter.
So I vote for light sand.
 
Gypsy13
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
I’ve acquired 3 albino corys. Would they prefer black sand or light? One fish I’ve never dealt with is the corys. Do they ever sit still?

I found a piece of driftwood that feels awesome! Tell me what y’all think!
AD24BA54-58A1-4DD2-AAC2-F4407B7A35E5.jpeg
 
Dave125g
  • #6
That's a nice piece of wood.

My albino corys were on both black and white sand. They don't seem to care much about the color. They only stay still at night when they sleep next to each other. During the day they search the sand for food.
 
DarkOne
  • #7
I'd recommend Black Diamond Blasting Sand (BDBS). Can't beat it for price. Tractor Supply Co sells 20/40 50lb bags for $8. I used 100lbs in my 75 gallon for about 2" depth.


DSC_3872.JPG
 
Gypsy13
  • Thread Starter
  • #8
That's a nice piece of wood.

My albino corys were on both black and white sand. They don't seem to care much about the color. They only stay still at night when they sleep next to each other. During the day they search the sand for food.

Mine are all over the place all the time. LFS says since they’re under an inch long they’re bbs so they’re more active?
 
Gypsy13
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
Mine are all over the place all the time. LFS says since they’re under an inch long they’re bbs so they’re more active?[/QUO
That's a nice piece of wood.

My albino corys were on both black and white sand. They don't seem to care much about the color. They only stay still at night when they sleep next to each other. During the day they search the sand for food.

Thank you about the wood! It’s heavy. Feels gnarly.
 
Gypsy13
  • Thread Starter
  • #10
I'd recommend Black Diamond Blasting Sand (BDBS). Can't beat it for price. Tractor Supply Co sells 20/40 50lb bags for $8. I used 100lbs in my 75 gallon for about 2" depth.

View attachment 426839

Thank you. Luckily we are equidistant to two tractor supply stores.
 
Hunter1
  • #11
I want to echo, “that’s a nice piece of wood.”

I’m about to do a 29 and am waffling about white or black sand. Already have 3 with BDBS and I like them. One has eco-complete and I have good plant growth.

But was looking for something different. White sand worries me that it will show diatoms, fish poop, decaying vegetation more?
 
Gypsy13
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
I want to echo, “that’s a nice piece of wood.”

I’m about to do a 29 and am waffling about white or black sand. Already have 3 with BDBS and I like them. One has eco-complete and I have good plant growth.

But was looking for something different. White sand worries me that it will show diatoms, fish poop, decaying vegetation more?

Thank you!
And that’s my issue. Some folks think the aquarium will be too dark. But, it’ll be in the middle of a 16x24 living room with ghastly white walls. That and the fact I can’t see anyway. But in my mind I see all these light colored shiny fish and the albino corys against the black sand. I’m also going to have a section on each end with eco Complete for a few pretty plants.
I’m excited. I love the feel of this driftwood!
I can’t wait to decide on the plants. But, I have decided on the black sand and eco Complete. In this open space and the aquarium not being against a wall, I’m sure it’ll be ok. I think it would be ok against the wall too.
Thank you again. That decision is made. Black sand. Eco Complete.
 
Gypsy13
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
Next up: plant ideas. Best heater. One that’s adjustable not these preset pieces of junk. Thinking maybe some water wisteria? Hmmmm...
 
Dave125g
  • #14
The fact that white shows the poop is a good thing it makes it easy to clean up.
0219181834c-1.jpeg Here is a picture of white sand, so you can see what it may look like.
 
DarkOne
  • #15
Is there a reason you want to use EcoComplete? I'm finding that root tabs in BDBS works as well or better than potting mix capped with sand. I just started using DIY Osmocote Plus tabs. I have a lifetime supply for under $25.
 
Hunter1
  • #16
The first photo is BDBS over eco-complete.
 

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Hunter1
  • #17
This is BDBS over potting mix. 2 month younger tank too. You can see the runners. I ordered these plants 3/01/18 so they have only actually been in the tank for 1 month.

But the eco complete is cleaner.
 

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Gypsy13
  • Thread Starter
  • #18
The fact that white shows the poop is a good thing it makes it easy to clean up.View attachment 426903 Here is a picture of white sand, so you can see what it may look like.

Would probably make a difference if I could see. But since I can’t, I could use the black that’s in my mind-or-I could use white and just keep imagining black. Hmmmm...
 
Gypsy13
  • Thread Starter
  • #19
Is there a reason you want to use EcoComplete? I'm finding that root tabs in BDBS works as well or better than potting mix capped with sand. I just started using DIY Osmocote Plus tabs. I have a lifetime supply for under $25.

I was mainly thinking the eco Complete would make me a couple of nice hills for plants?
 
Gypsy13
  • Thread Starter
  • #20
This is BDBS over potting mix. 2 month younger tank too. You can see the runners. I ordered these plants 3/01/18 so they have only actually been in the tank for 1 month.

But the eco complete is cleaner.

Hubby says they look the same to him. No help there. I know I don’t want to mess with potting soil. Well. Now I’m thinking again. :/
This tank will never get cycled cause I’ll never get it set up. Lol.
 
Gypsy13
  • Thread Starter
  • #21
Ok. Hubby told me to post this pic. I had a croc head thingy in there and evidently there’s a wooden alligator thingy too so, according to hubs, it looks like it’s behind the driftwood. He’s so easily entertained.
 

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