Journal: My South American Biotope (Brazil stream)

Discussion in 'Aquascaping and Member's Setups' started by Rattail, Sep 23, 2008.

  1. Rattail
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    Rattail Algae harvester

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    coming soon!!!
     
  2. Icarus
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    700mm?
     
  3. Rattail
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    700m long x 700mm wide x 700mm high ;) = 343L
     
  4. hotdog83
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    Wow, 700m long? Will make a nice river!:p

    Seriously though, it sounds awesome! Can't wait for the pics!
     
  5. Rattail
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    Rattail Algae harvester

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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    TYPO. 700mm not m. I DID say it's a cube. ;)
     
  6. hotdog83
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    hotdog83 Algae harvester

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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    I know, I was just teasing...:p
     
  7. turando101
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    ...longest thread with no info on the whole board ;D ;D
    sorry...it has got the tank dimensions.... :p
     
  8. Rattail
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    Rattail Algae harvester

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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    The idea to set up an Amazon biotope came when I started planning my Southeast Asian Community Aquarium in 2006 (http://www.apsa.co.za/board/http://www. ... ic.php?t=2) and is centred around which fish I wanted to keep. I have successfully had discus before, and though beautiful, I found them to be a bit boring. The next obvious choice was angels. That was my starting point. I wanted a beautiful aquarium with angels.

    I looked at a huge number of different aquarium layouts and asked LOML which style would suite her. Having fallen in love with the lusciousness of my Southeast Asian aquarium, she obviously went for a heavily planted one. There went my idea of doing a strict biotope. (Not that I mind ;))

    I needed to find interesting wood for starters and a buddy told me about a place that sells wood. More wood than I have ever seen before. (check out the products section at http://www.namibianhardwood.co.za). Though beautiful and varied, they did not have what I was after.

    I hacked some guava branches, but this would take long to cure. They are now busy drying on my garage roof.

    [​IMG][​IMG] Click to enlarge

    I even dug out a vine. This would also take long to cure.

    [​IMG][​IMG]
    Fortunately I eventually found some dried Ivy at a nursery that suited the idea forming in my mind.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    I also found some nice round rocks.
    All of which went into a kiddies pool to soak along with 2 baby platies from my pond

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    I ordered my tank (700x700x700) from Sam’s as the price was ok. He completed it in a week! The double braced tank is made from 12mm glass. I’ll collect it next weekend.

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    I bought my own steel (32mm 1.5mm square tubing) and a buddy made me a frame. (700x700x800 high)

    I rubbed it down with thinners, then painted 2 coats of rust inhibiting NS4, followed by a coat of quick-dry spray enamel. However, I needed more than one tin, so I used some Velvaglo! (Hey.... the tin says you can use it on prepared steel!! ;))

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Final coat was completed indoors. Had this frame been 50mm bigger, I would not have gotten it into the house! (I originally wanted to make a 800mm cube but did not relish the thought of maintenance in such a deep tank).

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Now that I have the frame, I can start with the woodwork while I decide on which plants to use. This will largely depend on what I can find, but should be Echinodorus (obviously... ;)).

    so will only be a few select species.

    In the meantime, the hunt for plants continues. I have once again decided on just a few ((I’m not one for a liquorice all-sorts setup), mostly Echinodorus. The trick is going to be to find them as no-one seems to be importing the ones I need. Always some excuse about "it must be on a list"
     
  9. Alwyn
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    WOW!! More than impressive Richard!! Looking forward to follow the progress of this masterpiece in the making!! ;)
     
  10. turando101
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    I recall reading your postings on the South East Asia tank from beginning to end in one sitting (I actually made a note to read it again BEFORE I start with my big tank) and thinking that is how one plans a tank.
    I am looking forward to reading all the details of this tank!
    Cheers,
    KarelM
     
  11. Risen
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    Hi Richard. I see that you take wood from, vines, guava trees and mature them. over what period and how does one know when the wood is ready. Are there other types of wood one can use? I was wondering whether protea or Fynbos pieces are suitable?
     
  12. Rattail
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    risen: I have no experience in other woods except with the usual mopani and then guava and vine. Someone told me that all wood will eventually rot - some just take longer than others. hardwood (oak, beech) are good choices.

    Someone also suggested that it shouldn't really make a difference whether you put the wood into your tank wet or dry, but I'd prefer it to be BONE DRY! Then I know all goggas are gone. Then I'd still boil it (if it's small enough to fit into a pot) or pour lots of boiling water over it. Then I'd soak it long.

    As for fynbos and protea, sorry I don't know. Start a post under GENERAL - it will be interesting to see what comes from it.

    I decided to fetch the tank today after all. It was VERY heavy and just fitted through the front door. I hope it doesn't leak because I don't relish the thought of carrying it back to the bakkie! I'll test it later on. I first need to design the cabinet around the stand.
     
  13. Andre
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    Andre Green fingers

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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    Thats exactly what happened to my first and only Sam's tank. I hope you dont have the same bad luck. Did you use Obies to make the stand?
     
  14. Dirk B
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    Dirk B Aquascaper

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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    Fynbos and protea woods are fine, just remove the bark.... I would be careful with ivy as it could be poisonous, the family is known to contain toxic substances.

    Kind regards,

    Dirk
     
  15. Solex69
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    Yep, remember the Batman movie with Poison IVY in it? :) hahahaha
     
  16. Rattail
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    And if it's VERY dry? I mean, this stiff is hard as bone and even drier!! You have me worried now, Dirk...


    What Obies are you refering to?
     
  17. Dirk B
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    Dirk B Aquascaper

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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    Hi Richard,

    I do not know if I am understanding you correctly. Do you mean that because the ivy wood is dry it is safe? Well if that was what you were meaning, the fact that the ivy is dry, will definitely not mean that it is no longer toxic.

    A example of the toxicity of even dry wood is tambotie. No good braai fanatic in Limpopo would use this wood for his braai as it is toxic, even in spite of the fact that it makes the most phenomenal coals.

    Obies is Obies Oberlander, a legendary welder who also keeps tropical fish from the Tygerberg vicinity. If you need a good stand, this is your man.

    Kind regards,

    Dirk
     
  18. Rattail
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    Rattail Algae harvester

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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    Hi Dirk. You did understand me correctly, and now you have me worried. How long must I leave the wood in the kiddies pond with the baby platies before I'll know whether it's safe to use?

    (PLEASE NOTE: I do not condone animal trials, but in some cases it is necessary).
     
  19. Dirk B
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    Hi Richard,

    Wood can leach out components for as long as it is intact, so I am not going to commit to when your log may be safe. Another point that I wish to make is that platies are pretty tough and more sensitive fish might die where they may survive, so I leave the decision with you about when your ivy twig/log may be safe if ever.....

    Kind regards,

    Dirk
     
  20. Rattail
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    Re: Journal: My 700mm South American Cube

    I was also thinking of the hardiness of platies (and mine can probably be classed as "wild caught" because they have been breeding in my natural outside pond for more than 4 seasons now! ;))

    Being a child of God, I always consider all creation with the utmost respect and love and to this end, would rather err on the side of caution.

    Result: I will no longer be using the ivy wood in my aquarium.

    I will select some of the guava tree branches and use that. I'll let it mature a few weeks until i am ready to set up. I know it won't be properly cured by then, but it should be ok as I have used wet guava before (very thin branches) and nothing went wrong.
     

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