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Old 11-15-2006, 08:07 AM   #1
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??? Aragocrete & Cutting ???

Ok, so I have a SW tank that is about 8 months old, but I am basically new at this cuz it was my ex bfs obsession and when he left, he left it and now I am like uhhh this stuff is very complicated and everything is not going so good lately, but I do know a couple things. I have a few semi-related questions.....

1. The tank is a 55g but only has 35lbs of LR in it- I've been wanting to get more, but its too expensive! I've been researching a little on this Aragocrete rock and it seems like the way to go, but has anyone used it? Do I cure it with regular water or saltwater? Somewhere I saw 1part concrete 6parts sand/shells/etc and then one other had that and added 3/4cup plastic shavings? plastic seems a bit odd to me though, do you know if this is ok for your tank? Also does anyone know a reef/fish/aquairum safe colorant to use on these aragrocks? I found a site but they want $15 just for S&H on a $3 product (yah right).

2. When I was researching this aragocrete I came across whats called "cutting" but I didnt understand the site. Is this ok for your stuff? Does anyone know a good site that explains this? My tank has a lot of assorted mushrooms, but in 7 months they havent seemed to multiply and my rose tip anemones have multiplied, but dont look to healthy. I want to get this tank going and looking good, is cutting the answer? And how is this supergluing ok for your stuff???? Seems like it would kill them.

Thanks for the help in advance
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Old 11-15-2006, 11:47 AM   #2
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Can you just buy base rock? It should run about $2/Lbs.
I did a quick google searc on that Aragocrete here are the 1st two sites that came up:
http://www.garf.org/class.html
http://www.athiel.com/lib3/arago.htm
As for coloring, once the coraline grows over it, you wont even see the colors, I would skip that part.
I believe the anemones split, due to stress, if you have four and they die, they could possibly foul your tank.
Right now I would work on premixing water for 24+ hours and have the temp and salinity the same as your main, get those nitrAtes under control. Once you have a better handle, we can think about adding rock. Just hang in there and I applaud your willingness to set things straight!
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Old 11-15-2006, 12:27 PM   #3
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I agree that the base rock would be the way to go and it is not that expensive. Your LR now would seed the base rock.
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Old 11-15-2006, 03:32 PM   #4
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I started mine with all base rock and bought 1-2 pieces that had coraline on it . It took some time but it colored up fairly quickly I found some interesting shapes and built on that , it took about 3 months to see it starting to color up ....
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Old 11-15-2006, 09:30 PM   #5
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Ok sounds good then I will get some base rock. That takes 3 weeks to start having the bacteria to help the tank too or about how long usually? Thanks again.
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Old 11-15-2006, 11:46 PM   #6
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I have aragocrete in my tank. The great thing about it is you can make your own shapes. heres another web site http://www.reefs.org/library/talklog...er_052498.html
You have to cure it in fresh water (weeks). pH goes through roof during curing, changing water speeds curing (supposedly). Then you put in salt water and it starts second curing. Again more you change water quicker the curing. Use the water from water changes. Will post pictures
I would skip the coloring and the plastic. I stuck shells into the surface to add interest.
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Old 11-16-2006, 01:06 PM   #7
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If you are using base rock, you shouldn't have to cure it. BUT just to be safe, you can add some to your main about 10-20Lbs at a time, and test your water. If you see ammonia, do a PWC. I would suggest http://marcorocks.com/.
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Old 11-17-2006, 08:52 AM   #8
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Ok awesome EJS4, I am interested to see your pics! So you do have to cure them with SW or FW? and then SW from water changes after FW? I also read somewhere curing them with vinegar for a few days first too, did you do that?

Thanks for the site and advice roka64. At this point I am thinking hell, why not just use the LR I have (carribean and fiji), BR, AND some aragocrete rock lol. It will be like my little test to see which does the best lol I always liked a little variety anyways..... plus I am extremely undecisive :P
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Old 11-18-2006, 08:20 PM   #9
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You have to soak (cure) the aragocrete in FW until pH drops. the more you can change the fresh water the better. Once the pH drops then you salt using the water from the water changes pH will go up again. When it drops again its ready for the tank. Again the more often I changed the salt water the quicker I found the pH to dropped. I tried the vinegar could not see difference. The curing concrete raises the pH off the scale. I used a gallon of vinegar in a 20 gal tank did not lower pH enough to see difference.
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Old 11-18-2006, 09:03 PM   #10
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Wow those are awesome. I am afraid I wont be able to make anything that looks any good lol. Where did you get your information for making yours?
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Old 11-19-2006, 10:57 AM   #11
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http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaver...ementRock.html
http://www.garf.org/
http://www.reefs.org/library/talklog...er_052498.html
These were the three sites I used. First two gave me ideas for shaping rocks. To shape the rocks you need a container with loose sand that you shape then you pour in your aragocrete and add more loose material to hold the shape.
For example the bottom arched rock was made by forming a bowl shaped hole in loose material then adding aragocrete to bottom and sides of hole but filling center with loose material.
The Best shapes I made are the large arches not visible in pictures. See garf.org It keeps the sand bed open but allows you to build up rocks above.
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Old 11-19-2006, 11:21 AM   #12
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I would imagine that you could use a ballon and pop it once dry it should peel off easy .. Just be careful not to pop the ballon while shapping which should not happen if you dont over fill the ballon
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Old 11-19-2006, 11:35 AM   #13
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Wow, EJS4, those are pretty cool!
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Old 11-19-2006, 06:42 PM   #14
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Sadielynn is correct. The hollow rock with the holes was made with an inflated rubber glove. Fingers form the five opens, then when it drys you pop the glove and pull it out one of the holes.
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Old 11-21-2006, 01:20 AM   #15
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I made about 20lbs tonight. I am going to leave it all until I get back from out of town on Friday and then see how they turned out. I am not too confident in my shape and arch making skills though lol. But this is a fun experience because the whole family joined in and it will add memories to our tank. Overall I only spent $7 on a 50lb bag crushed oyster shell, $10 on a 20lb bag of crushed coral, and $5 on a 47lb of cement. So that makes me very happy
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