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Old 02-21-2008, 11:42 PM   #1
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Help with moving a 55g tank!

Hey all,

My wife and I just bought a bigger house, and will be needing to move out tank. It's a 55g tank, we are considering to buy a 90g or 120 gal tank to setup at the new place.


The transfer of the fish and rocks is fairly streight forward, but the problem is A) how do you transfer the sand? and B) how do we get the new tank cycled in 2 weeks? Obviously 120g is alot more water than 55g, so there will be more fresh SW than aged SW. I figure at most we could save about 30g of the 55 to put into the new tank.

Any help will be helpfull,

We do also have a 30g tank we can setup for temp, but again it's not cycled.

-TheChad
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Old 02-22-2008, 12:51 PM   #2
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First of all I would not transfer the sand. Buy new sand and seed a couple cups of the old to seed it. You would not believe how nasty the old sand is. When I switched over to my 125 from a 55 gallon I used new sand and used 3/4 of the water I already had and added new water from the LFS to make up the difference. When you move over the old LR it will help to quickly cycle your tank. Try to keep it as wet as possible so as to lose as little of nitrifying bacteria as possible.
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Old 02-22-2008, 01:35 PM   #3
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The beneficial bacteria that make a tank 'cycled' are not in the water. They live on surfaces. Almost all of the bacteria you need is in/on the LR and the sand bed. I also would only use a cup or two of existing sand to seed a new sandbed. The 80 pounds of LR will take care of your new tank. If you are not adding any additional bioload you should not have any sort of cycle. You just need more water to make up for the additional volume of the new tank. You may want to pick up some base rock (ThatPetPlace or Marcorocks) to add to the tank before moving your LR in.
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Old 02-22-2008, 06:37 PM   #4
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I agree with what both guys said. When I moved from my 75 to 125, I was going to reuse the sand. I only had a shallow sand bed. I had it in a tote with a heater and ph for a week. When I was ready for it, I first got a cup full, but the crap stunk so bad there was no way I was using it. I did end up using it, but I washed it thoroughly....for about an hour in tap water. Basically it was like using brand new sand. I just couldn't see throwing out sand that cost like $40/bag (Caribsea Aragonite).

Let me add this. If you get base rock. DO NOT get marcorocks. They are great for starting a new tank, but they will start a nasty cycle in your tank. These rocks MUST BE cured.
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Old 02-23-2008, 10:20 AM   #5
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Thanks for the info.

Our move is only about 10 min away, so I will have the LR in 5gal buckets of water, so I shouldn't loose much bacteria!

I think I am going to try to reuse most of the sand, But I will wash it all first, Its alot of money in sand, and I am already going to have to buy more sand for the bigger tank.

So if I reuse 30gal of my tank water, and fill the rest with fresh tank water, get the parameters allin check, the It will be safe to put my fish, inverts, and coral in with out any sory of real cycle?

I plan on, once everything is in the new tank to add more base rock and get it mature before adding any more fish.

-TheChad
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Old 02-23-2008, 11:59 AM   #6
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I thought Marcorocks were dry base rock?..?

Are you going to have the new tank setup and ready before you have to move everything?

When I move my tank (build a new house) it will either be the first or last thing I move. Probably the last thing that is moved.

I think I would hang on to more then 30g of the old water. If you are going from a 55 to a 90 or 120 then you are talking about a LOT of new SW.
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Old 02-23-2008, 01:19 PM   #7
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Reef Rock from ThatPetPlace is safe to use for base rock. Just rinse it well as it is 'dusty' from shipping. It've very porous, dried rock.

I also would try for less than a 50% water change (new water vs. transferred) if it can be helped.

Have you considered using playbox sand for the additional sand? It's only a few dollars for a 50# bag.
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Old 02-23-2008, 02:48 PM   #8
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Marcorock is dried live rock. I helped my cousin set up his tank and that's what we used to cycle it. We even found a dried up serpent star inside the rock. The rock looks awesome, but being it was live and everything died on it when it dried out, there is lots of crap that will start a cycle.

I used some Kolorscope play sand from HD and I didn't really like it. Besides some of it being extremely fine, there are lots of real sharp looking silica chunks. It never caused any algea issues tho. IMO, it's better to spend a little more and get aragonite.
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Old 02-24-2008, 02:02 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ziggy953 View Post
I thought Marcorocks were dry base rock?..?

Are you going to have the new tank setup and ready before you have to move everything?
I think I am going to setup the new tank and fill it with 60g (120g) of fresh salt water, transfer most of the sand from my 55g after washing it, add new sand to achieve 2"-3" sand bed, let the tank settle, then transfer the LR, then transfer 20G of SW from the 55g, then test the water and make adjustments untill the new tank parameters are the same as the 55g tank, then transfer the fish, coral and inverts and transfer the rest of the water from the 55g, then top the tank off and be done.

Thats my current plan, What do you guys think?

-TheChad
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Old 02-29-2008, 03:12 PM   #10
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I still think I would transfer more of the water from the 55 to the new system. I would also have new SW mixed and ready for a PWC soon after the move.
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