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Old 01-25-2006, 09:12 PM   #1
Tex
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Ammonia off the scale

I'm 2-1/2 weeks (18 days) into cycling a 100 gal. My "tap" water is still a bit cloudy and my ammonia is still off the upper end of the scale at 8.0. I thought I did everything right. I have a PennPlax cannister with AC and filter floss running and two big powerheads for circulation. I have some cheapie Coralife lights on a 12 hour timer. I have arogonite sand in the bottom, 15 pounds of dead rock and 2 rotting cocktail shrimp. Water temp and SG are good. No sump (yet) and no fuge and no protein skimmer (although a skimmer is on the way)

Should I do PWC or just wait it out and see what happens. So far I'm about $900 into it and the familiy thinks I'm an idiot and wants to see a damsel or two.
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7 month old 100 gallon. Hopefully on my way to a great reef tank. A few small fish and a few small soft corals. T5 HO Lights and ro/di unit.
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Old 01-25-2006, 09:23 PM   #2
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Oh yeah, forgot to add, there is a bright green slime algae growing in the corners of the rectangular tank where the silicon seals the glass. Only on the silicon - if that means anything.
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7 month old 100 gallon. Hopefully on my way to a great reef tank. A few small fish and a few small soft corals. T5 HO Lights and ro/di unit.
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Old 01-25-2006, 09:32 PM   #3
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Is there anything left of the shrimp? If so remove it. Hold off on the WC and leave the lights off for a while. Since you did not seed the tank and have two shrimp it will take a while. What type of water circulation do you have (GPH)? If you can stop by the LFS tomorrow and pick some LR rubble or just LR it will probably help you out. If nothing more than a few lbs it will speed it up. Did you order your base rock? You need that in the tank. Did you get my PM about the lights?
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Old 01-25-2006, 09:36 PM   #4
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if you figure a 4-8 (6-8 being more accurate) week cycle, then you are ok. i would just wait it out and see what happens. 2 and a half weeks isnt that long.
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Old 01-25-2006, 09:44 PM   #5
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sounds to me like you are right on schedule.
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Old 01-25-2006, 10:05 PM   #6
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Whew, thanks for the comforting replies. Yes Brenden, I got the PM. Still deciding on lights. The shrimp are still pretty much intact but rotting. I'll remove them tonight. The cannister is a PennPlax Cascade 1000 rated at 265 gph and two Penguin 1140 power heads rated at 300 gph. Is that enough?

And, I will stop by by lfs tomorrow and pick up as much LR as I can afford, at least 20 or 30 pounds - for now.

Tanks for the replies. Any other comments would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 01-25-2006, 10:59 PM   #7
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If you are going to buy that much LR I would consider online. It will save you considerable $$$. Check out fishsupply.com or liveaquaria since liverocks.com is out. You need to get your flow up to around 1500-2k GPH since you plan to eventually have corals. Even without corals it needs to be higher than it is. Some power heads or a nice weekend DIY closed loop system will help a lot.
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Old 01-25-2006, 11:15 PM   #8
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Yep, you're right Brenden. I'll order some rock online. I'll get an order to hirocks for 100 lbs or so of base and then maybe 40 or 50 lbs of live on order. I can probably pick up some rubble and a few pounds of lr from lfs tomorrow. I'm not in a tremndous hurry but it would be nice to at least have a damsel swiming around. I'll see what my options are for water circulation. Not sure what you mean by a DIY closed loop system. Another big cannister with no media in it? Or some sort of big pump under the main tank with intake and exhaust tubes?

You all have seemed to answer my questions about off the scale ammonia. Nothing to worry about only 18 days into the cycle.

Thanks a lot people!
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Old 01-26-2006, 09:18 AM   #9
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Here are two site for a diy closed loop setup.

http://www.melevsreef.com/closedloop.html

http://www.oceansmotions.com/

Good Luck,
Brian
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