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Old 03-11-2015, 01:14 AM   #1
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Stocking a biocube 29gal

Hey guys, i have a new 29 gal biocube coming and i am wondering what everyone thinks the best stocking options are? as far as the tank itself goes i am doing a filtration mod. removing the bio balls and replacing with eshopps sump sponges, seachem media in a mesh bag, perigean seachem, a uv sterilizer and a protein skimmer. I have read that really fine grade sand is no good in the tank so i will stick to something bulkier, i will be putting live rock in and i have experience with soft corals so perhaps some of those too down the road. I was thinking maybe a couple clown fish, or something really colorful? any ideas would be helpful. also any other suggestions for mods
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Old 03-11-2015, 01:19 AM   #2
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I'd skip the sterilizer and skimmer. UV sterilizers would need to process a huge amount of the water column to be successful...something that you won't see in hobby grade equipment.
When it comes to skimmers, under 30 gallons can easily be done without a skimmer as you can easily do larger water changes to address parameters if necessary.
I think a biocube of this size would be a GREAT tank for a clown pair. You can also check out the nano section of liveaquaria.com for other fish that might trip your trigger.
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Old 03-11-2015, 01:25 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Sniperhank View Post
I'd skip the sterilizer and skimmer. UV sterilizers would need to process a huge amount of the water column to be successful...something that you won't see in hobby grade equipment.
When it comes to skimmers, under 30 gallons can easily be done without a skimmer as you can easily do larger water changes to address parameters if necessary.
I think a biocube of this size would be a GREAT tank for a clown pair. You can also check out the nano section of liveaquaria.com for other fish that might trip your trigger.


i was thinking of only running the uv sterilizer when i added a new fish. do you really think it would be pointless? also is the lighting in this tank adequate for some soft corals? things like gsp or mushrooms?
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Old 03-11-2015, 01:48 AM   #4
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I'm far from an expert in the lighting of any of these systems. Hopefully one of the other 'nano heads' will chime in here.
As for the uv sterilizer being pointless, the answer is yes. UV may kill everything that passes through it, but you'd have to get the entire water column going past that light. When it comes to the most common stuff we deal with, ich, is only one of the 3 life stages are water born and catching it while it swims up from the sand and onto fish is as unlikely as me running a marathon. Even for the stuff it could catch, it would still need a high amount of turn over to be effective.
When I visit my parents home, they have a UV sterilizer on their water line due to fecal matter that comes from run off into their well water from a corn field. It is plumbed right into the water line so that all water coming into the house passes through it. I hope this helps you understand the difference between useful UV and our hobby grade garbage.
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Old 03-11-2015, 01:52 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Sniperhank View Post
I'm far from an expert in the lighting of any of these systems. Hopefully one of the other 'nano heads' will chime in here.
As for the uv sterilizer being pointless, the answer is yes. UV may kill everything that passes through it, but you'd have to get the entire water column going past that light. When it comes to the most common stuff we deal with, ich, is only one of the 3 life stages are water born and catching it while it swims up from the sand and onto fish is as unlikely as me running a marathon. Even for the stuff it could catch, it would still need a high amount of turn over to be effective.
When I visit my parents home, they have a UV sterilizer on their water line due to fecal matter that comes from run off into their well water from a corn field. It is plumbed right into the water line so that all water coming into the house passes through it. I hope this helps you understand the difference between useful UV and our hobby grade garbage.

it does!! thank you! i will skip the uv sterilizer
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Old 03-11-2015, 12:38 PM   #6
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The lighting will be fine for softies and probably some lps.


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Old 03-11-2015, 06:12 PM   #7
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I think my 29g BioCube has turned out nicely. I guess you'd call it a mixed reef. It has stock lighting, with the edition of 3 more LED lunar bars. I did add an addition PH for more erratic and powerful flow.

When I first started the tank, I used the middle chamber as a refugium with chaeto and live rock rubble. After using algaefix for a hair algae problem, most of the chaeto died off, so I removed what remained and the rubble. Replaced all this chemipure elite, ceramic rings and a nitrate reducing pad and purigen. Also added a Corallife skimmer to chamber 1.

Here's what's happening:

Zoas and palys grow very fast. Mushrooms split rapidly, in fact, just sold the last mushroom out of my tank last night, finally. I have a yuma that doubled in size, but hasn't split. I had a devil's hand that looked like a SPS frag when I got it, 8 months later it was 7 inches across and 8 high. Rics always detatch and get lost in my tank, only softy that hasn't taken off in the tank.

I have frogspawns and hammers putting out heads, but a torch was going gangbusters for 6 months, then dies from brown jelly in 3 days. Duncans grow like weeds, as do candy canes. Cyphastrea and favias have noticeable growth. Lobos on the bed have amazing color, but I've not had them long enough to notice any growth, other than amount of 'puffyness'. Acans don't do well, nor have plates, but all other LPS have done well.

Ponape and green polyp birdsnest are doing great, green slimer has put out 2 nubs/stalks in 3 weeks, monti caps and a monti setosa growing well. ORA mint pavona and a cactus coral sending out plates constantly. These are the only SPS I've tried to keep, but all have done well.

And amazingly, the stock lights are great for NPS, I have a chili coral that looks amazing, bright red with starck white polyps. My sun coral isn't looking great, but to be honest, I probably need to target feed it more.

Also, when I had an issue, ELEVEN MONTHS after purchase, Corallife went above and beyond fixing the problem, to the extent of sending me an entire new hood, as well as an extra set of cooling fans. This was knowing that most people would never buy a 2nd biocube, as everyone wants bigger and more LOL. Still, I received a few hundred dollars worth of freebies, not by being 'that guy', just being polite and honest. Their customer service is top notch.

IME and IMO, these AIOs are doing exactly what they say they will, just accept the inherent limitations of stock. The nice thing is they are also easily customizable, rimless, LED, seperate sumps, media racks, anything can be changed.
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