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Old 11-01-2005, 03:29 PM   #1
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New tank: jump start cycle with bio wheel in existing tank?

It appears my existing 12 gal Eclipse at home has cycled (I need to do a pwc and take new reading tonight). I am going to start a new 12 gal Eclipse at my office. I was thinking of putting the new tanks bio wheel into my existing tank to let it get some bacteria before I start up the new tank and possibly exchange some gravel between the existing and new tank. How long do I need to let the new bio wheel float in the existing tank for it to be effective?
Or would it be better to let the new bio wheel float in the existing tank and then exchange bio wheels and put the older bio wheel into the new tank?

I have some Bio Spira from my last cycle but am not sure how effective it was with the initial cycle but will add it to the new tank also.

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Old 11-01-2005, 03:53 PM   #2
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The bio wheel has most if not all the bacteria so just moving it to the new tank but then replacing it again with the new bio wheel won’t accomplish much. In fact unless you feed your tank ammonia then the bacteria will just die off after a couple of days from the established filter making you have to start over for both tanks.

Since you’re limited with the eclipse system and are not using a sump you could move some gravel but it will have limited bacteria.

If you kept the bio-spira in the fridge and it’s not older than a couple of months I’d just use that in the new tank along with the fishless cycle method.

You will still have a mini cycle but it should only last a week or two.

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Old 11-01-2005, 06:55 PM   #3
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Let the new filter run on the old tank, until the filterpads are kinda dark brownish and you would have to clean them again. It will probably not instantly cycle your new tank, but make it a whole lot shorter.
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Old 11-02-2005, 02:21 PM   #4
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It probably won't be possible to run the new filter on the cycled tank, as it is an Eclipse setup that integrates the filter into the hood. If your existing tank has just recently cycled, I would wait another couple weeks to remove any filter media. Floating the new Biowheel in the cycled tank will work fine, just leave it in there for a week IMO. I've started quite a few tanks this way and I can tell you that it won't be an instant cycle, but an abbreviated one. In order to start up the new tank at your office, make sure you will have time to test the water every day until the tank cycles, and be prepared to do a pwc or 2. The tank will cycle in a few days, but until it does you may see an ammonia or nitrite spike (I had a small nitrite spike the last time I did this, but it was easily kept under control). When you add the Biowheel you floated in your established tank into the office tank, be sure to add a food source for the bacteria immediately- either start stocking very slowly or add pure ammonia to the tank. When I did this I went ahead and added a small bioload without any problems.
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Old 11-02-2005, 03:54 PM   #5
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Switching over the older established bio-wheel OR the removeable filter cartridge are both ways to bypass most of the cycling, as long as you add your fish the same day.
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