If you started with 80% live, and 20% base, you'd have pretty good filtration once the cycle was done. But if you did the reverse and had only 20% LR to start off with...you're going to have far less filtration after the cycle...
I think I disagree. The purpose of the cycle is to establish a bacterial colony that processes the waste in the system. From my reading, folks who cycle with no LR
in their tank have a longer cycle time (in general). Folks who cycle with LR
that they purchased on-line had a shorter cycle time (in general) and those who cycled with LR
purchased from a LFS
had an even shorter cycle (in general).
My theory behind this is the bacterial colonies.
With no LR
, there's no bacteria and the entire colony must be built from scratch.
With shipped LR
, the majority of the colony has died off, but there is still some there to "kick off" the colony in the cycle, giving it a faster start.
, there's little to no die-off of the colony so the bacteria is there in full strength and ready to being processing waste.
Now, to answer the original poster. I think your biggest factor is your budget. IMO
, I would buy 60-75% of base rock from your choice of distributor, and the remaining LR
from wherever you can get it cheapest (or whoever has the rock you like the most). The cycle will probably last a week or two. The coraline and other life on the LR
will spread to your base-rock over time. but you'll be too busy worying aobut the algae bloom that comes next to even worry about the coraline