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Old 09-22-2004, 03:02 PM   #1
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QT setup questions?

i have a 75gal tank that i am slowly setting up. i would like to install my accessories and begin cycling in a couple weeks. after heavily researching, i have come to the conclusion that i will NEED a QT. anyway, during my years of FW i never used a QT and i never introduced any diseases to my tank. Ok, call me lucky. well the SW fish, as i ascertain by my research, really should be quarantined. so i have been convince to get a QT.

questions...

what size tank should i get? for me, the smaller the better - can i get by with a 10gal tank?

can the tank be bare (no substrate, no rocks)? i know that many members suggest pipes and things for the fish to hide in.

what kind of filtration should i use in the QT? (i would like to keep cost down as i am sparing no expense for my display tank).

after cycling my display tank, is it considered bad to fill the QT with the display tank water?

what accessories are a MUST for the QT? (heater, etc)
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SW - 75 gal
Amiracle SL-350 Wet/Dry (no bio-balls)
AquaC EV-180 Skimmer w/Mag 7
2ea Maxi-Jet 1200 & 2ea Maxi-Jet 900 PH
Captive Purity Refractometer w/Calibrator
LCD Digital 250 W Titanium Heater
48in Coralife 4x65 watt PC
Won Pro Heat II
Tunz level alarm
Approx. 200lbs Sand (3-4" DSB)
RO/DI unit - 110 GPD

Please feel free to advise me!
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Old 09-22-2004, 06:11 PM   #2
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A 10 gallon would do if the fish are small. If you can get a 20. Not much more money are will make life easier on you in the long run.
Yes, keep it bare bottom . In the event you would need to treat for disease, any substrate or porous material will absorb meds. PVC pipe is what most use to give the fish something to hide in. A regular trickle filter will suffice . You can seed a sponge in your sump or main for a couple of weeks before filling to give you a bacteria colony. Also water from the main to start is fine, as long as your main doesn't have any parasites.
And yes a heater is a must.
HTH
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Old 09-22-2004, 08:47 PM   #3
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so after quarantining does anyone ever empty the water from the QT and start clean again (just like a real hospital), regardless of any perceived disease or not?
__________________
SW - 75 gal
Amiracle SL-350 Wet/Dry (no bio-balls)
AquaC EV-180 Skimmer w/Mag 7
2ea Maxi-Jet 1200 & 2ea Maxi-Jet 900 PH
Captive Purity Refractometer w/Calibrator
LCD Digital 250 W Titanium Heater
48in Coralife 4x65 watt PC
Won Pro Heat II
Tunz level alarm
Approx. 200lbs Sand (3-4" DSB)
RO/DI unit - 110 GPD

Please feel free to advise me!
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Old 09-22-2004, 09:18 PM   #4
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If you can, I'd go with a 20G. I was going to go w/ 10 but the folks on this board talked me out of it and I'm very glad . . . I'm running it BB with PVC hiding places, a sponge filter, and an old Penguin 125 (minus the biowheel). With a 20, I don't have to worry about the tank for 4-5 days at a time (well, other than feed and topoff) and the parameters stay good--with a 10, I think I'd be testing a lot more often.
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75-gallon SW tank with 29-gallon sump
Euroreef ES5-3
2x Maxijet powerheads
Mag drive 9 return
Coralife 4x65 Lunar Aqualight
120 lbs rock from liverocks.com
1 peppermint shrimp and 1 fire shrimp (very shy)
2 black Ocellaris, Squish and Smudge
3 chromis, too identical to name as yet, in QT
10-gallon tropical
29-gallon with two goldies, Carrot and Orangehead
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Old 09-23-2004, 01:17 PM   #5
Sam
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I have had a lot of success running a 10G as a QT. I bought a complete set up with hood, light, heater and Whisper filter for about $50.00. That is all you really need. Of course you will have to stay on top of the water quality as you will not have the biological filtration as your main tank. Other items:

Bare bottom - easy cleaning. May make it less stressful to the stcok if you place a dark colored material beneath, so they can know its the bottom
I use a couple of decorative rocks with holes and caves in them for hiding places along with a 6" section of 2" Sch 80 PVC.
I keep a spare filter pack in my main sump so I wil always have a cultured bacteria polulation ready to go.

I keep all stock in QT (after a FW dip with Methylene Blue) a minimum of two weeks. After transfer, the QT is ALWAYS completely broken down, sanitized with bleach and dried off until the next choice. Why take the chance of a contaminant infecting incoming fish. To date, I have never had any disease problems with my stock. HTH 8)
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Old 09-23-2004, 02:57 PM   #6
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sam,

i noticed that you breakdown your system after transferring your fish to you display tank. i also read this on one of the articles on this site. i, too, like that idea because i don't have to keep everything plugged in and running with nothing in it (not to mention performing maintenance). at any rate, i also notice that many people keep their systems running in the event that they need a hospital tank for fish that develop a sickness in the display tank.

what are your opinions concerning this? (as well as the opinions of others)

btw, when re-starting your QT for a new arrival, do you take water from your display tank to fill your QT as well as using a cultured bacteria filter pack?
__________________
SW - 75 gal
Amiracle SL-350 Wet/Dry (no bio-balls)
AquaC EV-180 Skimmer w/Mag 7
2ea Maxi-Jet 1200 & 2ea Maxi-Jet 900 PH
Captive Purity Refractometer w/Calibrator
LCD Digital 250 W Titanium Heater
48in Coralife 4x65 watt PC
Won Pro Heat II
Tunz level alarm
Approx. 200lbs Sand (3-4" DSB)
RO/DI unit - 110 GPD

Please feel free to advise me!
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Old 09-23-2004, 03:14 PM   #7
Sam
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I always break down the tank in between transfers. I am not comfortable in keeping that tank running in the chance that I may have something in there I don't want. When I fill the tank up, I personally use fresh SW that I keep pre-made and circulating in a holding tank. I have seen where others use water from the MT (for example when doing a water change). I like to use fresh water because unlike the main tank with my much stronger biological filtering capability (LR, Skimmer etc) the QT is pretty basic. Thus I want to have as little nutrients or other elements in there as possible. I have found that the one time I did use MT water, my QT pH went totally whacked. I attribute this to bacterial action in the water. However, that is a personal preference and opinion only. I don't think there is any 'harm' per se in using the MT water. I always use the pre-cultured filter pack. As a matter of fact if I know I will be acquiring new stock, I set up the tank and get it running a day or two before, so it is stable. Also remember wth regard to size of the QT, usually your inhabitants will be juvenile and you will not be QTing more than a couple at most, so again, I personally find this size works really well. 8)

If I did need to use it as a hospital tank for my MT stock, I would definitely use consider using the water from there, depending on what the problem is (parasite =no MT water). so far, as I mentioned before, I have had zero problems with disease in the MT.
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Old 09-23-2004, 09:15 PM   #8
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sam,

sorry for another question (i am new at this)... if you start with freshly mixed water from your holding container, doesn't your tank go into a cycle even though you use a pre-cultured filter pack. if so, won't it go into an amonia spike! again, sorry for the dumb question, however, your QT technique looks like something i want to model and i just like to understand what i am doing.
__________________
SW - 75 gal
Amiracle SL-350 Wet/Dry (no bio-balls)
AquaC EV-180 Skimmer w/Mag 7
2ea Maxi-Jet 1200 & 2ea Maxi-Jet 900 PH
Captive Purity Refractometer w/Calibrator
LCD Digital 250 W Titanium Heater
48in Coralife 4x65 watt PC
Won Pro Heat II
Tunz level alarm
Approx. 200lbs Sand (3-4" DSB)
RO/DI unit - 110 GPD

Please feel free to advise me!
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Old 09-24-2004, 09:06 AM   #9
Sam
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Please ask as many questions as you want. That is the express purpose of this board for us to learn from each other. Okay, usually a cycle is the process of betting the relevant bacterial cultures established and functioning for the various trace elements. so for ammonia, there is a certain type of bacteria, for nitrite another and the same for nitrates. When a tank first cycles, as you go through the NH3, NO3 and NO4 phases, the presence of these elements is what triggers the growth of these various bacterial colonies. Once the tank is established, these various colonies are now 'established' in the tank. By leaving the filter pack in the Main Tank, I allow all of the various colonies to populate the filter media. When I transfer this to the QT, I will have established colonies already present and ready to deal with the elements. With that said however, this is a small population and is intended to help with dealing with the waste. For that reason, you have to be diligent about cleaning out excess food and detrius from the QT tank for the time the stock is in there. I usually check my pH every day a and do a clean out/water change ever 3-4 days or so. To answer your question about the spike. When you add the livestock, there will invariably be a small spike, but this is mitigated by the fact that you already have an established bacterial colony, so the levels come down very quickly. This has worked very well for me. But because of the very basic nature of the QT tank, is the reason that only a very limited number of stock should be in there at any time. I have run my stock of 4- yellow tailed damsels, i- Naso Tang, Banggai Cardinal through this process and all came through in flying colors. Please feel free to ask any more questions you may have or for any more details. I think I mentioned that I also use a methylene blue FW dip for the stock. HTH 8)
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Old 09-24-2004, 02:18 PM   #10
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thanks sam! great explanation... answered my question perfectly! i was wondering if the bacteria on the filter pack was enough to handle the NH3, NO3 and NO4 in the newly filled QT.

i am not very familiar with the FW dip. i have been reading a bit about it in the my books and on this site. i need to research that a bit more.
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__________________
SW - 75 gal
Amiracle SL-350 Wet/Dry (no bio-balls)
AquaC EV-180 Skimmer w/Mag 7
2ea Maxi-Jet 1200 & 2ea Maxi-Jet 900 PH
Captive Purity Refractometer w/Calibrator
LCD Digital 250 W Titanium Heater
48in Coralife 4x65 watt PC
Won Pro Heat II
Tunz level alarm
Approx. 200lbs Sand (3-4" DSB)
RO/DI unit - 110 GPD

Please feel free to advise me!
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