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Old 05-06-2010, 08:01 PM   #1
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Removing bioballs from biocube?

This is concerning removing the bioballs that come with a biocube setup and replacing them w/ live rock. What size live rock are we talking: rubble (marble size stuff and smaller) or golf ball sized stuff, or go as big as I can fit back there? Also I haven't done any mods to it, so having the rock back there w/o any light is fine, right? I know the bacteria itself lives in the rock and feeds off the ammonia / nitrites. Just making sure light isn't needed for any other reason. I already have had the tank running for a few months, so what is the best process for removing the balls, slowly, all at once? I have more cured rock that I plan on putting in the front of the tank, so should I coincide putting in the front with taking some out the back? I just want to make sure I don't remove too much bacteria at once.
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Old 05-07-2010, 12:03 AM   #2
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Any size rubble will do as long as it fits. I dont think it matters too much. As for light you wont need any on the rocks if its just live rock. Some people mod a fuge in the second chamber and thats the only need for lights. As for removing them I have heard all at once and slowly both work. To be on the safe side I just took them out slowly. Just in case.
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Old 05-07-2010, 12:23 AM   #3
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Agreed. The smaller and more porous rubble allows more surface area to host the bacteria, but any size will do - they'll grow wherever they need to. And correct, no light is needed to support the bacteria.

As for a switching out procedure, do it little by little. i.e. remove a handful of bioballs, add a handful of rubble, wait a few days (or a week if you're patient enough), repeat, until you get them all done.
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Old 05-07-2010, 01:45 AM   #4
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How much LR do you have in display? There is not enough room for LR to make any difference in 2nd chamber. You should put purigen and chemipure elite in 2nd chamber and do weekly 5 gallon water changes. Do that and you will have perfect water conditions.
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Old 05-08-2010, 07:34 AM   #5
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I do a weekly 10% PWC. I really lost track of the pounds of LR in the DT. I have at least 1:1 ratio of LR to water. I knew I needed to remove the bioballs, but didn't just want to take them out and chance a mini-cycle. Once I started to take a few, it was pretty much all in with the mess it made. For now I filled the back up with smaller chunks of cured LR I had. I guess I'll save the balls in case I ever put a real filter on my lil' pond (FW of course) outside.
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