From The Grave, Fluval Spec V Build

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KaeJS

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Hi guys,

This is my first post on here. I've been in the hobby for over 10 years and I've had this gunked up Fluval Spec V sitting for months (yes, months...) with stale water and nastyness. I decided to finally do something about it and bring this baby back to life.

I'm going to be posting my build along with pictures so you all can see the progress and follow along. I'm open to suggestions and criticisms.

Thanks for your interest and check back often!
 
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KaeJS

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Here are some pictures of what I started with. Basically, a total disaster...

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Of course, my first step was to clean everything and try to salvage as much as I can. I like new (and clean) things, but I like challenges and saving money even more. So, on I went to try and make this tank sparkle & shine...

First step? Take out the powerhead and heater. I've upgraded the powerhead from the stock fluval one to a MiniJet 606 for better flow in the tank. I also tested with a thermometer to make sure the heater works. It seems OK and holds a steady 77 degrees which should work for what I'm planning on stocking the tank with.

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Next step was to remove the gunk and water from the tank. Yes, it was gross. Yes, it smelled. Yes, it was thick. Yes, it was slimy. Yes, it was completely disgusting black sludge.

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What better way to clean a tank, especially one with calcium buildup? Why... VINEGAR, OF COURSE!

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KaeJS

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So, after a little bit (a lot) of effort... We can see that things are becoming to look much clearer in my vision for revival.

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I've also fitted the tank with a Finnex Planted+ LED Fixture so I can grow some semi decent plants in the tank. It was also pretty nasty and had calcium buildup.

BEFORE:

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AFTER:

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KimberlyG

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Awesome!
 
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KaeJS

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Aside from the light, I also scrubbed down the Minijet 606 and the heater to remove any buildup and sludge. I ran the Minijet under the tap to make sure it worked and to get all the crud out from inside.

Here's a picture of the cleaned out products:

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Then I started to get down to cleaning the gravel that was in the tank so I could re-use it. The tank had Flourite Red in there, so I figured it was decent enough to keep if I could salvage it. And I did.

Here is the BEFORE picture:

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And here is the AFTER picture:

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What did I do next? Well... Here is where some people will gasp. I bleached (there, I said it!) I BLEACHED some driftwood and rocks. I also bleached the filter media. Goodbye, my poor little bacteria.

Driftwood about to be bleached and scrubbed down:

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Here is the media, you can see how orange the media has become from the decay in the tank:

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I then started to play around with some potential aquascape settings once the driftwood was rinsed. And rinsed. And primed. And rinsed. And rinsed some more to get rid of the bleach.

A quick look:

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And while I was messing around with aquascape settings, I started to run my RO unit to put some fresh water in the tank:

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Lastly, I added in the gravel and started fo fill this baby up. I also plugged in all the electrical stuff so it was ready to go. Obviously, the heater and powerhead were off while I was filling.

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Then, I added the rocks that I previously bleached and finished filling up the tank. I turned on the heater and the powerhead to run overnight. This is what the tank looks like right now. A little cloudy, but it should settle:

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That's it for now!

I've added some water and a tiny bit of gravel to the media compartment of the Fluval from my larger 55 Gal to help the nitrifying process. Tomorrow I will be sourcing and planting some plants into the tank to get a jump start on the ecosystem so I can avoid things like algae.

I should have more pictures up tomorrow with some (hopefully) clearer water and some colourful, healthy plants.
 

Neptune334

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It’s great that you are starting this tank back up! I am looking forward to seeing how it turns out.
 

emma

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Wow! I'm impressed!
 
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As promised, more pictures and plants!

I picked up some staurogyne repens, anubias nana and a rotala indica for some colour. The tank has cleared up a little now and it's starting to look like something. I even caught some of the plants spriting already.

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KimberlyG

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Nice job! Quite the resurrection :;bananawater
 

Neptune334

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I love it!
 

TobyZ28

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Great stuff! I also resurrected a hand-me-down Spec V just a few weeks ago and are also using the minijet 606 (too much flow so i had to drill some holes in the the output tube) I'm using the Evo 5 media Basket loaded with a whole bunch of Lavastones + rings in the lower to levels and have had great stable water parameters!
 
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