i have a few questions

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lgn119

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I have a 125 gallon tank that i am wanting to set up (i want it to be planted and have fish) and i have a lot of ideas but i want to know a few things
1 I'm planning on building a sump out of another aquarium around 30 gallons or so i was planning on using an overflow box instead of drilling my tank. I want to section it off into three parts (I looked up a little information on it and it seemed to be the best way to do it.) I want to run my canister filter to the sump as well as run my heater. What would be the best pump to use and how many gph should i be trying to achieve? Do you see any problems with this set up or did i not explain it well enough?
2. i have fairly hard alkaline water coming out of the tap with a ph of around 7.6 the water is hard (i used to jungle quick dip 6 in 1 strips and got 150)
3. What types of fish and plants would be good for this water?
4. See any Problems with my ideal set up
3 male killifish ( some of the more colorful peaceful kind)
4 angelfish
6 silver dollars
10-15 cardinal tetra
1 medium sized pleco
I realize that all of these are soft acidic water fish but i was wondering exactly how tolerable they were to different types of water.
I was also wondering if there were any silver dollar or something similar that i could keep with plants or some plants that silver dollars wont eat.
I know that this is a lot but any little bit of information that i could get from anyone who actually has experience with this would help. And oh yeah sorry about any grammar, punctuation, spelling mistakes I'm just so used to typing on word. Thanks in advance
 

kayeleven

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I attempted a sump/diy overflow. It worked fine, but was too noisy for me. I did like how the "stuff" was all hidden.
Based on my experience with it here are some pointers:
1) Make sure the sump is EASY to get to. With plenty of room above it so you can work in it easily.
2) Make sure your overflow is rated/can handle more flow than your pump can put out. You want the pump to decide what the flow will be, not the overflow.
3) Test how it will react with a power outage. You don't want to worry that your overflow will loose suction during a power outage while your not home.
4) Be redundant. If you can afford it and have enough room on your tank get two overflows. If one clogs the other will prevent a big mess.

As far as the pump; any pond pump will do. Decide how much turn over you want in your tank, like 10X per hour. This would be 1250 GPH. Your pump needs to supply that flow at the height your tank is at. (if your tank is 4 feet above where the sump is the pump needs to be rated at 1250 at 4 ft) Most pumps have a chart on the package that shows what the flow will be at a given height.
Pumps are expensive, but there isn't much price difference between the different outputs, so if you want more flow (and your overflow can handle it) buy bigger.
Another idea is you could have your canister filter take suction from the sump and output into the tank. This eliminates another piece of equipment, and ensures that only the filtered water goes back to the tank.
 

catsma_97504

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Welcome to Fishlore lng119!

It looks like your sump/pump questions have been answered, so I'll tackle your concerns with your water.

For starters, those dip strips are notoriously inaccurate. You should purchase a liquid test kit. The best is probably the API Master Test kit as it includes all the basic tests. You can find it online for around $20 or at the LFS for $25-$30 in most areas.

In order to get a true reading on your tap water's pH, you need to add water to a 5 gallon bucket with an air stone. Test the pH every 24-hours until you do not get a change. This usually takes 2-3 days. Testing the tap immediately will include the chlorine/chloramine, CO2 and any number of other chemicals that affect the pH. By aerating the water you will be dissipating these components. For example, straight out of the tap my water will read around 7.2 these days. After 2 days in the bucket, it drops to 6.6.

Your selection of fish will do fine with your water parameters. Just to be safe, I'd recommend that you acclimate them slowly.

Silver Dollars and plants are an entirely different story. As they are herbivores, they often destroy plants. Hopefully, someone will come along who can recommend plants that they will not eat to the roots.

Good luck with your tank!
 

Kunsthure

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Welcome to Fish Lore!

Most fish will adapt to a wide range of water parameters if they are properly acclimated first. There are some fish that are fancy pants fish as I call them, that need fancy water conditions but none of the ones you want are fancy pants fish.

Are you on municipal or well water? If you're on municipal, you can save the cost of a liquid KH test and ask your water treatment department when the hardness is--it may even be on their website.

There are plants that silver dollars won't eat: they're usually made in China. But seriously, I'm not sure as I've never kept them (silver dollars I mean, not plastic plants).

-Lisa
 

ayelie

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Welcome to Fishlore. Hope you find the answers to all your questions here. These are smart fish keepers.
 
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lgn119

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Thank you guys for all of the information ... If i find any more answers I will be sure to update
 
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