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Old 09-11-2003, 10:02 PM   #1
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Okay here it goes, all advice appreciated

Please dont yell at me, I am a newbie at this and to make a long story kinda short here is my situation. I have a 75 gal. tank that included magnum 350, two 402 power heads, heaters, UGF, and CC as bed. I added fish too soon, the ammonia spiked, dropped, now its at zero but the nitrites are sky high which I assume killed my fish, all but two damsels, blueish purple with the yellow tail. After reading alot, I now realize the UGF is a no-no and the CC isnt helping so today I took out all the coral and got rid of the UGF. I went to this fish supplier who talked to me about everything and once he was done laughing and convinced me that I want a functional tank with live fish instead of a cute tank with dead fish. I bought 20 pounds of live rock and I am getting more tomorrow for its payday. He told me I should wait to put in the LSB until I get all my rock in and get that functioning. I know I have to buy a protein skimmer as well. If you could please give me any advice or things you learned not to do or to do I would appreciate it. Thank you for your time. Serena

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Old 09-11-2003, 10:25 PM   #2
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I am a newb too... I would recommend getting a couple of good books first, such as conscientious marine aquarist by fenner. Another thing is to read >>this<<
and explore the other articles on the articles page of this site.

Then, try and read as many threads from this site about topics as you form questions.

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Old 09-11-2003, 11:29 PM   #3
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first a protein skimmer is optional depending on what you want to have in your tank. what i mean is you can fuction without a protein skimmer on a fish only tank imo . we don't have one on our 180g or our 29g an they run just fine. you can cycle a tank with damsels but some people will say it is inhumane. it's your choice. your curshed coral was fine. don't make yourself go broke buying live rock. you can add a little bit of live rock at a time. that is what we had to do. your nitrites will level off . tank is in the cycling process. don't fret . you should be fine.hth
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Old 09-11-2003, 11:38 PM   #4
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Try supplementing you LR with Base Rock, good money saver.
150 gal inwall reef tank, DIY everything except the tank and skimmer, MAG-24 return, 3 1200 Maxi-jets, Turboflotor 1000 Skimmer, 100qt Igloo Cooler sump.


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Old 09-12-2003, 12:10 AM   #5
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IMHO, you should not wait to do the sand. If you wait to do the sand, it will take more time for the sand to become good. Most people use Southdown or Old Castle brands of sand (available at Home Depot in most northern states) or some other kind of "Carribean Play Sand". I use silica play sand, rinsed very very thoroughly, with a couple of LS bags mixed in. There are many different methods of doing the LR and sand bed. I will list a couple:

1.) Some believe the best way to add the rock and sand is to put small pvc cylinders on the glass bottom to support the rock. You put your base rock on them how you wish, and then pour in the sand.
2.) Put the base rock on the bottom glass, and add sand around it.
3.) Put the sand bed in, then add rock. (This is my favorite method, but my base rocks are huge, like 15 lbs. on average.)
4.) Some people don't even use sand, they just use LR on a glass bottom. (this is from a long and exhausting debate on whether DSB is the way to go, because apparently some poeple have problems with the DSB "crashing" after several years and devastating their tanks. I do not wish to get involved in that arguement, though )

As for the sand, there are a few options:
1.) Purchase all live sand (mucho dinero!!)
2.) Use all Play sand. With this method, you can still mix some crushed coral or argonite, and it will help to buffer the water.
3.) Use Play sand and supplement it with LS. (my choice method)

No matter which sand you put in, it will eventually gain the beneficial bacterias from the LR (without any LS to start with this could take a while) and become LS. If you just throw a bag of LS in with the Play sand, you should be golden.
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Old 09-12-2003, 07:29 PM   #6
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Thanks alot for the replies, I did get 60 pounds of live sand and put it in the tank plus another 20 more pounds of live rock. I think I may need another bag or so of the live sand or perhaps the stuff from home depot?? What do you think? I just want to do it right this time. How thick are the sand beds in your tank? I know I am really tired of spending money though, thats for sure and there is still so much more to go. But you know the saying, a home is built on a good foundation.
Thank you!
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Old 11-02-2003, 08:19 AM   #7
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This has been a very helpful thread. Kudos to kidafius.
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Old 11-02-2003, 10:05 AM   #8
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You have received some great advice! My advice is to continue to watch your ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates. You may have another cycle since you have removed your CC, starting your DSB, and adding live rock. Here is an article on >>>Converting Ammonia to Nitrate<<< and one on >>>Cycling your tank without Fish<<<. I plan on having 4-6 inch DSB in my tank, and a DSB in my refugium. Here is a calculator I used to find out how much sand I needed : >>>Aragonite Calculator<<<

Hope you find these helpful! Good luck and let us know your progress!

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Old 11-04-2003, 12:28 PM   #9
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also get good filtration going when adding the sand. Your tank will be a cloud of white when you add the sand. Unless you add it dry and use a plate on top of the sand then pour the water on the plate. Either way dont worry when your tank is pure white, it will clear up.

I never thought you would, but always knew you could.
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