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Old 01-20-2010, 11:23 AM   #1
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quick questions for a new setup

hi, i hope this situation hasn't been answered before, but i just ended up buying a 55g tank with stand & canopy/ pro clear 75 wet dry filtering system with skimmer/ return pump (rio+ 1700),a heater & 48" florescent light set for $200 off craigslist few days ago.

the person i got it from said he recently sold the fish/live rock etc and there's still some wet sand in the tank, little water at the bottom of the pro clear 75 unit.

this is my first saltwater tank and i'm strictly going for FOWLR only for atleast a year before i move to corals etc. anyways, the guy mentioned that its better i don't clean the tank because he believes there are still some good bacteria in the sand bed and i should start using the tank without any cleaning. I was wondering if this was a good idea in the first place to just add saltwater to it and some cured live rock to start the cycling process. there is a faint stink in the tank, more like some dead snail or critters etc. is this decaying stuff releasing ammonia good for the cycling. please advise.
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Old 01-20-2010, 11:25 AM   #2
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chuck it.. clean it.. start fresh
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Old 01-20-2010, 11:30 AM   #3
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I agree. Toss, chuck, deep-six, or trash the sand and water.
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Old 01-20-2010, 11:42 AM   #4
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awesome, i will do that soon, oh this would be my first saltwater tank btw. i guess cleaning process would be simply as hosing it with tap water in my backyard and then drying it with a towel?

then i plan to follow this guide for my cycling
Tips and tricks for your fastest fishless cycle!

oh, i don't know why he mentions i should use tap water, but i will ignore that and use can water (poland spring) as i don't have the space for a RO system right now. poland spring water at $1 per gallon is decent i think.

weekly i plan to replace 5 gallons or is this too much/little?
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Old 01-20-2010, 11:54 AM   #5
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Looks good. I'd go for the raw shrimp instead of the raw ammonia route - just 'cause I don't know any better.

Some wash with vinegar too btw. I'v even heard of bleach with a good rinsing.
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Old 01-20-2010, 12:03 PM   #6
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I'd do the light bleach solution.. disinfect everything everywhere... equipment too... rinse well.. let air dry.. Vinegar will help get any water marks or algae off easier. but be careful mixing bleach with anything else

I use pure ammonia.. contrary to what others have found, I found it at several of my grocery stores.. Typically has been the generic brand.. which is great cause that's the cheapest.. I've got a near half gallon around somewhere..
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Old 01-20-2010, 12:30 PM   #7
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I'm a freshwater guy and not a saltwater guy, but I would clean with vineger or hydrogen peroxide. Both will kill most pathogens they encounter (though some will actually eat the vineger) and both break down into natural compounds very quickly. With bleach you run the risk of having residual chlorine trapped in sand or the seals on the tank that COULD cause problems later on. Granted most of these are solved with your water conditioner, but I prefer the safest hydrogen peroxide method. The point I think everyone is trying to make is that you should not trust what the last guy had in there. Why did he break his tank down? It could be because all his fish died. If that's the case there could be some hidden nasties in the sand. If you didn't do it, I wouldn't trust it.

If you are going to buy water for your tank, buy distilled and not spring or drinking water. If your not buying either of those, IMO you should just use tap water. Spring or drinking water both have minerals and contaminants in them just like your tap water. Your tap water is much cheaper, even after you factor in the water conditioner.
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Old 01-20-2010, 01:18 PM   #8
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shoot. i just bought poland spring water, if its not better than tap water in minarel content, maybe i should just return them to the store and get a reverse osmosis unit, i saw some online around $200 but most of them need water around 77 degree? the only place i can install is my backyard and its too cold in jersey now. can I just buy the RO water someplace in jersey? i called petco and they said use tap water with a conditioner when i asked for RO water. any other place in jersey sell them?
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Old 01-20-2010, 01:30 PM   #9
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The walmart here has RO water is 37 cents a gallon but the jugs is more. I used that until I got a RO unit.
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Old 01-20-2010, 02:01 PM   #10
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thanks for the tip. i searched this forum and found a large number of threads and information related to equipment

for now, i'll start researching if i can buy the water directly, next stop: walmart
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