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Old 03-31-2011, 12:07 AM   #1
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"ugly" live rock vs. pretty live rock...

"Ugly" rock is live rock that has been picked over at the LFS and is on clearance for $2-$4. Pretty rock is the non picked over stuff and is $6.

I am going to have a 10 gallon tank. I wanted to budget about $40-$50 max for live rock.

What combination of ugly rock and pretty rock should I use? There is also base rock, but the LFS said with the price at $2 I would be better off to get the ugly stuff.

Thanks!
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Old 03-31-2011, 12:57 AM   #2
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Haha what's so ugly about it ? Its your tank and I haven't seen the "ugly" rock so I'd say its your call on how much you want to spend and how much "ugly" rock you can stand to look at.
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Old 03-31-2011, 02:44 PM   #3
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IMO get some base rock, some nice pieces for cheaper, say 10lbs and get some live, about 5 or so lbs. You'll keep it cheaper and get nice pieces.
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Old 03-31-2011, 03:25 PM   #4
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What makes a "nice piece" of rock (live or base)? I will be looking at rock on my next trip to LFS and wonder what I should be looking for.
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Old 03-31-2011, 03:29 PM   #5
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look at reefcleaners.org and marcos rocks, those are great rocks, nice porous pieces, more surface area = more room for benficial bacteria to grow
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Old 04-01-2011, 01:41 AM   #6
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What exactly makes it "ugly" live rock? I agree that you may want to get some base rock and some live rock, as the live rock will seed the base rock and fill it with life in time anyway, for less money. If the end result is the same, why pay more?
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Old 04-01-2011, 10:25 AM   #7
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You will get what you pay for. Buy $3/lb rock and you won't get much. That said you can buy most of your rock as dry rock and spend the money on some very high quality live rock. The life on it will spread to the rest and eventually you will have a great diversity on all the rock. Buiying cheap rock brings in very little biodiveristy, and the biodiversity is what you want to create a healthy stable system.
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Old 04-01-2011, 10:29 AM   #8
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Thanks all! Sounds like 10lbs base and 5lbs live for my 10 gallon should do it. My only concern is only having 5lb live rock to start. Will that be enough for proper filtration? How long does it take for the base rock to become "live"?
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Old 04-01-2011, 10:44 AM   #9
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Well since you'll be cycling for a while you won't need any biological filtration for anything, and I say probably once your cycle is complete it'll be "live". Unless you mean the colors the LR has, then that'll be a few months
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Old 04-01-2011, 10:50 AM   #10
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You should be fine with 5 lbs of life and 10 base. I like this post since i always try to let people setting up new tanks not to buy the ugly rock. I have never seen it being sold for different prices though, good idea. The ugly rock has no holes/caves and is very dense, therefore heavier and will cost more in places that don't sell it as ugly. The nice rock looks holey and branchy with lots of caves, very porous which like corey said is great for the good bacteria.
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