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Old 05-08-2014, 05:34 PM   #11
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Yes, the 'white stuff'. Don't worry, it colors up with the rest of the tank with time. And in terms of starfish and snails, having dry rock negates having any hitchhikers. If you want starfish or snails, you'd have to buy and put them in yourself. This is pretty normal for any of us anyway.
In terms of the lighting, that sounds like you could keep some soft coral under them. That'd be about it.
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Old 05-08-2014, 11:39 PM   #12
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Okay.. I just purchased the Salinity Refractometer, Aquarium & Seawater - Dual Scale (1.0 to 1.070 S.G.) by Agriculture Solutions and an API Saltwater Master Test Kit that tests high range pH, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, includes 4 test tubes, tray, and rack. I hope this is the correct one I need once I put my live rock in my tank.

I also ordered 20 lbs of Reef Saver Dry Aquarium live rock from Bulk Reef Supply. I talked to a man at the company over the phone and he said to put in the comments it is for a 29g and request soft ball size pieces. He said that will be great for my tank.

My protein skimmer arrived today so I put it in my empty #1 compartment in back of tank. I just put the cup on top, submerged it fully in the water, then plugged it in. I am not sure what I was supposed to do with it as there were no instructions included. I'm not even sure what I'm supposed to do with it now that it is in my tank? Do I have maintenance on it? Not sure what it is doing other than making my tank louder. LOL


Thanks again in advance!! Any comments or suggestions on anything else.. please tell me! I want to learn as much as I can.
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Old 05-09-2014, 02:22 AM   #13
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Welcome aboard.

First recommendation is take things slow. Any instant treatments can cause issues. Make you think you have an adequate bacterial colony when the bacteria have not gotten established on the rocks where they need to be. Considering your rocks haven't arrived yet is a good clue. But, putting bacteria into a virginal system is a good idea.
Once the rocks arrive, make sure you work the bottom ones down they the sand. There are burrowing fish and critters that can undermine rocks not well based, causing topple overs.
Once you get the rocks in you'll need a ammonia source. The 2 best options are a cocktail shrimp or my preference, pure ammonia. Dose the tank to 4 ppm ammonia and then WAIT. Good things come to those who wait. You don't have to keep it there (4ppm) the whole time, but redose when it gets below 1 ppm. Your cycle is done when the bacteria can convert 4 ppm ammonia to nitrate in 24 hrs with no nitrite or ammonia being left over. Then a big water change or 2 and move on to stocking.
During the cycle, leave the lights and protien skimmer off as well as no carbon or other clarifiers. With all the nutrients being added, light will allow algae to grow. Bad. The skimmer will try to pull out the ammonia etc your adding.

Your light should grow corals, perhaps even SPS. but an anemone needs a mature tank even if those lights are enough, which I doubt but am not sure.
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Old 05-09-2014, 08:57 AM   #14
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Once you get the rocks in you'll need a ammonia source. The 2 best options are a cocktail shrimp or my preference, pure ammonia. Dose the tank to 4 ppm ammonia and then WAIT. Good things come to those who wait. You don't have to keep it there (4ppm) the whole time, but redose when it gets below 1 ppm. Your cycle is done when the bacteria can convert 4 ppm ammonia to nitrate in 24 hrs with no nitrite or ammonia being left over. Then a big water change or 2 and move on to stocking.
During the cycle, leave the lights and protien skimmer off as well as no carbon or other clarifiers. With all the nutrients being added, light will allow algae to grow. Bad. The skimmer will try to pull out the ammonia etc your adding.

Your light should grow corals, perhaps even SPS. but an anemone needs a mature tank even if those lights are enough, which I doubt but am not sure.

However, this is not the only way to cycle a tank. You can also soft cycle, which is the older method and I actually like more. You can read up on it more in an article on her called "Do it fish in- Soft cycling the home aquarium" or something like it. Mostly this method would be used if you start off with all live rock, so that you don't harm the bacteria. Also so you don't sit with your tank fishless for a month.

No, these lights will not be able to keep SPS. Once again, they can keep softies.
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Old 05-13-2014, 05:08 PM   #15
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1. An API master test kit is good enough to get your tank cycled and to go from there.
2. You want to aim for 1-1.5lbs of rock per gallon. Now, in terms of live rock...you don't have to buy it live. To save money you can buy macro or base rock. Rock and sand being called 'live' is in reference to the bacteria that you are going to grow in the rock and sand when you cycle your tank...so why spend the extra money? It will help you avoid hitchhikers that can end up frustrating you as well.
3. A reef tank is a 'reef' when it is simulating an actual reef...so rock isn't all you are looking at. This is about corals and whatever else you'd end up putting in from shrimp, crabs...whatever. This is contrasted to a FOWLR (Fish only with live rock) system which...only has sand, rock, and...fish!
4. If you want to keep corals and anemone, you will need intense lighting...mostly for the anemone. Stock lighting won't cover it. In general, anemone can grow quite large and shouldn't be housed in tanks >20 gallons. We can talk lighting more later on.
5. Buy whatever rock you want, though I still suggest Macro/base rock. Toss it all in your tank at once and cycle away! I'd try to mess around and put the rock in a formation that pleases you before any livestock goes in. I personally hate having to move stuff around, especially if a coral has encrusted over it.
6. Bulkreefsupply.com sells base rock. When I started I ordered all of my rock live, though it didn't arrive that way, from saltwaterfish.com. I was happy with my order from there.
Hi there. Ok. My dry live rock is coming today. I plan on putting it in my tank. I bought 20 pounds of BRS Reef Saver Dry Aquarium Live Rock. I also bought an API Saltwater Master test kit. It should arrive tomorrow. I have a couple questions for ya now.

1.) add rock, burrow into sand really well and TRY to make a nice formation with it. What is the next step?
2.) Do I need to know levels of chemicals prior to adding rock? If so, I will wait until my test kit arrives to place rock in.
3.) Do I have to do anything once add the rock as far as starting the cycle? I already added Instant Ocean BIO-Spira Water Treatment to the water last week. I also added API Stress Coat Marine & Fish Tap Water Conditioner last week. I'm assuming that the BIO Spira will start the cycle of my tank?
4.) I have a protein skimmer in back compartment of my BioCube but not set in really tight. I am waiting for my sure grip magnet to arrive to mod it to fit better. I was told to shut my protein skimmer off while tank cycles, is this correct?
5.) I have the carbon balls and a filter on top of them in the tank. Do I keep all those in the tank while it cycles also? Ugh. I'm so clueless.

I'm sure once I experience my very first tank cycle, I won't be so confused. I guess I have no idea what to expect to see in my tank while it is happening. Also, does the cycle of the tank what makes the rock grow it's algae and make it look natural?

Sorry for the million questions. I've never done any of this before and you seem pretty knowledgeable. Please help me.

Thanks,
Sharlotte
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Old 05-13-2014, 07:07 PM   #16
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1.) add rock, burrow into sand really well and TRY to make a nice formation with it. What is the next step?
2.) Do I need to know levels of chemicals prior to adding rock? If so, I will wait until my test kit arrives to place rock in.
3.) Do I have to do anything once add the rock as far as starting the cycle? I already added Instant Ocean BIO-Spira Water Treatment to the water last week. I also added API Stress Coat Marine & Fish Tap Water Conditioner last week. I'm assuming that the BIO Spira will start the cycle of my tank?
4.) I have a protein skimmer in back compartment of my BioCube but not set in really tight. I am waiting for my sure grip magnet to arrive to mod it to fit better. I was told to shut my protein skimmer off while tank cycles, is this correct?
5.) I have the carbon balls and a filter on top of them in the tank. Do I keep all those in the tank while it cycles also? Ugh. I'm so clueless.
1. Just make it look how you want it to, that's all that matters.
2. Using ro/di water gives you total control of your levels. Just do it up like that and toss in a cocktail shrimp to cycle your tank.
3. You don't need to add anything to your water as long as you are using ro/di...even if you are just using di water it is fine.
4. You don't have to run your skimmer during the cycle, but you can. It will help it break in and give you more skimming time once you are up and running if you do.
5. I'm not sure what you mean by carbon balls...do you mean bioballs? Why don't you post a picture for us instead of guessing?
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Old 05-14-2014, 12:11 PM   #17
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Set up rock-look okay?

Okay. The rock is set in the tank now. I placed it so there were little caves and crevices for the fish to swim in when I get them.

I did not do anything else-just added the rock. I did NOT use RO/DI water. I used tap water to fill my tank up then added the BIO-Spira Instant Ocean Water Treatment.

So now I just wait and watch? Or still add a piece of shrimp in the tank? I have live sand and crushed coral for base of tank.

Please let me know what next step is after adding the rock. Thanks!
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Old 05-14-2014, 12:33 PM   #18
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1. Just make it look how you want it to, that's all that matters.
2. Using ro/di water gives you total control of your levels. Just do it up like that and toss in a cocktail shrimp to cycle your tank.
3. You don't need to add anything to your water as long as you are using ro/di...even if you are just using di water it is fine.
4. You don't have to run your skimmer during the cycle, but you can. It will help it break in and give you more skimming time once you are up and running if you do.
5. I'm not sure what you mean by carbon balls...do you mean bioballs? Why don't you post a picture for us instead of guessing?
Yes.. they are called bioballs...with the filtration system.
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Old 05-14-2014, 12:33 PM   #19
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If your planning on a reef then I would drain the tank and restart with ro/di water. If you just want fish you should probably be ok with the tap water.
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