After not seeing much effect of water changes, I am now using Crushed Corals =D in a nylon bag inside the filter.
The crushed corals are working nicely :D. Progress below:
04/02/2012 - pH: 6.0 - 2 tsp of CC [total]
04/02/2012 - pH: 6.2 - 5 tsp of CC [total] - 8 hours after previous
04/03/2012 - pH: 6.3 - 5 tsp of CC [total] - 24 hours after the previous :D
04/04/2012 - pH: 6.4 - 7.5 tsp of CC [total]
Note: I believe my low pH is due to the 3 pieces of driftwood I have. Although the tannins have been removed as there is no discoloration of the water, they may be the cause of low kh and ph.
Note: Nitrifying bacteria has to re-grow since low pH also meant low bacteria colonies. Increasing pH is causing the bacteria to re-adjust and grow. Ammonia and Nitrate rising as a result. As of 04/03/2012, it’s 0.25. I will change the water if it rises above that.
Here is an update on the tank. First a nice shot of it:
Next, my own improvisation of the Co2 System until the powerhead arrives:
Next morning, the effects, Pearling :)
Hopefully, the Algae on my glass will go away and the plants will blossom.
As always, thanks for reading. Until next time.
So, I’ve decided to stop torturing Facebook with my fish madness and post all pictures and updates here.
This is in chronological order:
December’09 to January’10
6 Months later, All the Gouramis died =(, the plants grew very nicely though =)
Summer’10, June’10 to July’10:
The inhabitants: 3 Dalmatian Mollies, 3 Red and Black Mollies, 2 Iridescent Catfishes, and 1 Angelfish:
Marble Angelfish, Age: 1 year in my tank, Size: 4-4.5” head to tail
Mollies, All fish in this tank died except two of these and the two Iridescent Catfishes.
After I scrapped everything, here are some shots:
Flourite Base, 20W 10,000K Single Fluorescent Light, 120W heater.
The next day, I added 1” of sand and water very slowly. Using a mug and a paper plate:
When I can read the sign in the back from across my house, the water is clear. This would work over 10 days. So I decided to accelerate the process.
After 3 90% water changes, here is the shot:
Added the driftwood also. Next the black background, airstone and some feeders went in:
BIG MISTAKE. NEVER cycle a tank intended for TROPICAL FISH with GOLDFISH. FEEDER GOLDFISHES will CREATE BACTERIA FOR GOLDFISH TANKS. If you put in tropical fish in a tank cycled with feeders , THE WASTE from the fishes will not be consumed by the bacteria. As a result, the gills of the tropical fishes will BURN and they will DIE. Cycle a tank for TROPICAL FISHES with TROPICAL FISHES.
Then I decided to do a heavily planted tank. The Java Moss I ordered from eBay came and I attached it to the log using black sowing string. It can also be done using fishing line, but it has to be cut after the moss attaches to the log. The sowing string, on the other hand will dissolve safely.
Here is a shot of the tank with Java Moss only:
Next up, LIGHTING:
A detailed explanation on lighting can be found on PlantedTank.net forums under the “Low Tech” section and the “Lighting” section. After some help from a member, Hoppy and several others, this was my lighting solution:
The shelf was $8, the brackets $4 each, three lights $6.75 at Home Depot, 3x 27W 5000K light, 2 for $5 at home depot. Total cost: $43.77 with tax. A retail light to provide this lighting starts at $70 online with $10-15 shipping. So I made this in about half the price. If you went to a good aquarium store and bought it, it would be around $130.
Here is a shot of turning them on:
Here is a shot of the tank:
Next up, THE FISHES:
For starting, I added 2x Odessa Barbs, and 1x German Blue Ram Cichlid. I also got 2x Blue Paradise from a couple, our friend who has been keeping fish for 3 years. They are our mentors in this project.
Shots of the fishes:
The German Blue Ram
The 2x Blue Paradise
The Odessa Barb
There were 2x Odessa Barb but one died after 2 hours in the tank. When I saw it alive, I noticed one side was fatter than the other. I believe it was sick from the beginning.
09/10/10: Day 5, the fishes seem to be doing fine. The Blue Paradises fight. One of them was already injured and he is getting bullied more and his would has widened. I’ll observe and hope he gets better. They are both male.
The German Ram is also not eating the flakes. Next time, tomorrow, I will submerge freeze dried bloodworms and then put it in the tank so it’ll sink to him.
A quick update, complete cost for this project:
The exact items that I bought:
Tank stand from Petco: $31
Tank: can be found within $40-$50 even less from Craigslist
Lighting system: $44 with tax
Flourite, 2 Bags: $44 with tax
Playsand from Home Depot: $3.49
3x Driftwood: $8, and $4 each = $16
Java Moss: $10
All other plants $18 with tax
Black background, homemade with spray paint, but can be found at officemax/staples etc as posterboard for $0.99
Co2 System (not made yet): $22 for powerhead, $8 for Lee’s small gravel vac, $5 silicon tubing, $12 with shipping for 4 small bulkhead fittings, Eheim prefilter foam $6.50 = $53.50
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Now for the comparison of what it would take to build this in retail.
Stand, tank, substrate, driftwood, background, and plant prices remain the same.
AHSupplies lighting (Highly recommended if you are very serious): $55 with $15 for 1 tube of light. I don’t know their shipping policy.
DIY hood made with wood from home depot: ~$10
Co2 regulator: at lowest $200
5lb Co2 tank: $50
Being optimistic, you will spend about $500 for a planted 29 gallon tank. No double this will look beautiful but this isn’t in my price range. If you are willing to put in a 2-3 days of work, you can do it yourself with my price or even less.
******* ******* ******* ******* ******* *******
That’s all I’ll keep this forum updated =). Thanks for reading.
Well, this is about why you shouldn’t go to petland for fish… EVER! .. and I’ll be making a new post about starting a new tank with all the knowledge and wisdom I’ve gained. I’ll be referencing all the places from where I gained my info and I’ll post places you can go to get quality fishes. These fishes are slightly pricy but they are in excellent condition.
Why you shouldn’t trust petland for fish:
Employees: No matter how good they seem, 90% of the time, they are no good. This is my experience: first time I encountered a disease, they give me this powder medicine called Erythromycin that cost me $12. Now you can buy this same medicine for “humans” for $3 at CVS. But it’s an anti-bacterial and it works the same way.
Not only would they not tell this, probably because they don’t know it, but the second time I encountered a different disease, they hand me the same thing. I think this is how their training goes.
Pretend the manager’s name is Mike and he’s being trained. Don’t ask me why it’s Mike. “Ok Mike, customer says the word “fish” and “disease”, what do you do?” Mike: “Hand them erythromycin, tell them “everything’s gonna b ok”. “Good job, Mike, now you are a professional aquarist”. You see, this is how it goes and it’s horrible.
The fishes: You go to these stores and see 20-30 fishes in a 10 gallon tank. Fishes, no matter how good it seems, can’t not develop diseases in that condition. Next time you go to a petstore, and it seems overstocked, don’t buy them if you value the fishes in your tank.
The supplies: These chain petstores, “petland discounts” and “petco” do not house the medicine you need when your fishes get sick. For example, my gouramis developed fungus. They came from a diseased petland store to begin with and guess what was suggested by the manager. You guessed it “Erythromycin”. Now, the medicine I really needed, after searching the forums, I found at Petsmart. They also carry a decent selection of substrates for beginners. That is the only good thing I can say about that chain store. The fishes in petsmart, worst I have ever seen in my life.
Cleanliness: This brings me to another point, cleanliness. I visited my friend’s petland, which he says “we are always on top of things, taking out dead fish” etc. Ok, that’s one petland. I’ve visited several petcos, one petsmart, and 3 petlands. Terrible water quality. Terrible tank maintenance. If 20% of the fishes in the store don’t die every week, I’d be surprised.
Now if you are a hobbyist past the newbie point, you probably know all this. If you don’t well this should be a shocker. I will also make another post tomorrow on proper starting care, where you should get your fish and supplies, and where to find expert fish advice. Trust me when I tell you, you will be happy to buy quality fish from Aquarium hobby shops for a slightly higher price than buying poor quality fishes for cheap. I have wasted about $100 only on fish, and another $50-70 on medicine. Don’t make my mistake.
Thank you for reading.
[Made the image myself; the two photos - courtesy of Google]
Determine how much spray paint you have to remove:
a. A thin layer of spray paint (less than 1 mm): -This you can remove easily. Take a tissue paper and some rubbing alcohol, 91% isopropyl will do. Rub it until the paint comes off. -If this doesn’t work, use sanding paper. Start with a 200 or 220. Rub it off, then use a wet tissue paper to get the dust off.
[Edit: General Rule of Thumb = Sand in one direction]
b. A thick layer of spray paint (0.5 mm - 1 mm) Now this is what happened to me, and there was no solution to be found. This happens when you spray paint too many times on the same surface and it becomes too thick. Tools you will need:-Several flathead screw drivers, including one large watch fixers screw driver, which is very small. -Sandpaper: 220, 320, 400 or in that range. -Paper towel -Rubbing alcohol and/or Acetone/Nail polish remover
Method: -First take the large screw drive and scrape off the large areas of the surface. Scrape slowly and this takes practice to get the layer of paint off. -Do the same for the small areas; use the watch fixers screw driver. -After you’ve made it fairly clean, use the sandpapers. -Start with the 220, sand it, and remove the dust with the wet tissue paper. -Then the 320, and 400 if need be. -Put some alcohol or acetone in a tissue paper and rub until the paint comes off. -Let it dry and you are ready to spray paint again. Remember to use a primer before starting the actual paint so the paint has something to grab onto.
And always use a respirator, or make your own when spray painting. That’s it and have fun :)
This is how I think Prince of Persia: The forgotten sands should have went. The game was suppose to bridge the gap between Sands of Time and Warrior Within but not only did it not do that but it also created a new story that doesn’t relate to the previous 3 games at all.
So, the story should have started with the Prince fleeing the palace of the Maharaja and returning to camp. But when he returned, he found that the army has already started marching to the palace. The prince rushes to the front lines to stop his father but he is too late for the invasion.
In Warrior Within, the prince says “But something horrible happened when we attacked the palace of the maharaja” but he doesn’t say what. So this game should have said, “When the prince reached the front lines, a cloud of dust and darkness appeared and out came the Dahaka, the Guardian of the Timeline.” Then the Dahaka would chase the prince, the prince would run back through the army. Attempting to reach the prince, the Dahaka would demolish the army in it’s path.
The prince would then find a horse and seek out a solution. He journeys to the sacred castle guarded by his brother. While he is observing from the edge of the city, the Dahaka appears and begins chasing him. Then this would lead to the opening cutscene of Forgotten Sands, where the prince is rushing to reach his brother inside the castle. But as he passes the city perimeters, the Dahaka stops and he cannot enter.
This would be explained by the water Jinn, who protects the city. As you know from Warrior Within, the Dahaka cannot cross Water. This would explain why it cannot enter the city. Then the game would start, and Forgotten Sands story will be finished as Ubisoft made it. At the end of the game, however, due to the death of the water Jinn, the Dahaka returns, and the prince begins his journey again, this time to the Island of Time.
The amulet, which, in Sands of Time, belonged to Farah, which she left after the “scene”. The amulet would have powers of the sands of time. The sands are negated inside the palace under the protection of the Jinn. So the prince would have to use the powers of the Jinn to rewind time just as he does in the Ubisoft storyline of this game.
This would then bridge the gap between Sands of Time and Warrior Within while introducing an irrelevant storyline. This isn’t the best solution, Ubisoft could have done better with the amount of time they put into this game. The traps were quiet genuine, and creative, specially the ones involving the powers of water and recall. The combat could have been made much much better. If this was to bridge the gap between the two games, it shouldve shown an evolution from the combat of Sands of Time and the brutality of Warrior Within.
They could’ve done a more complex storyline while keeping this one and intertwining it with the original. It would’ve brought satisfaction to the players of the original games.
I had such a cool dream last night. I was hanging with my friends in a restaurant somewhere in the five boroughs of New York. People that were there are Milton, Danny, Vernon, David and two others I can’t recall. The menu was pretty affordable and we ordered different dishes. I remember Danny ordered a Cheeseburger and someone said to order something different as you can get cheeseburgers anywhere. But he still ordered the cheeseburger =P .
After we ordered, the waiter was picking up our menus when he mentioned something about airsoft. Then I somehow got one of their catalogs and I wanted the customized M4 for $232. We thought they were going to bring me the box. But they brought us the box and a shotgun for demo. They demoed the shotgun and we tried it. It only shot 1 BB =(. Then they unboxed the M4.
This was the coolest looking M4 ever. The front was modified to look like an F2000 or the custom gun from evike for Ghost in the Shell. The back and mid was kept M4 style. The top had been changed into an XM8 rail and the charging handle was a cylinder.
I forgot to mention that we were sitting on a very large balcony but somehow we didn’t feel the outside wind. As I was looking at this awesome but somehow light gun, an old man who was looking over the balcony came over and started giving me advice. I told him that I could find similar ones online for a lot cheaper. I also told him if I buy this one, I’d add some weight.
Eventually, we ended our conversation and decided not to buy this one =(. The employees were taking away the guns and they actually forgot to put the M4 back into its box. Out of my Good Samaritan senses, I called them and gave it back.
Then we realized how long it had been and said “Wheres our FOOD!!??” and that is when I woke up.