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Old 09-17-2007, 11:11 PM   #1
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Sump and cycling help???

I am a newbie to the SW hobby and this is about my third post on the forum. I've been reading a lot of articles and posts as well as reading some books. I bought a 90 gallon with a built in overflow. I also bought a used sump with protein skimmer. From the photo, you will see that I am just about finished with my DIY stand. Canopy will come later.

Any suggestions on media I should put in my sump and where. As you can see from the photo, the water from the tank goes into the first section, then the protein skimmer is in the middle, followed by a canister filter. Right now, I only have the pump for the skimmer and a return pump. If recommended that I use the canister filter also, where should I place that pump? I bought a ball valve for the return pump, but should I also use one on the overflow from the tank?

Last thoughts. I've read some posts on cycling, and I am going to use some raw shrimp. I also am going to use live rock and sand in the tank, so what I've gathered is to put these in the tank as well during the cycling period, correct? So is the best order to get my cycling going, put lr and ls in tank first, then mix water in the tank and sump (despite cloudiness), then add the raw shrimp?

I appreciate any and all suggestions.
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Old 09-18-2007, 10:23 AM   #2
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That's a nice looking stand! I don't have my sump/fuge set up yet, so I am not much help there.
There are various ways to add, in different order, you LR, sand and such. Personally, I added my sand first (after rinsing it a whole lot) then the water. I do not suggest this, as the sand gets dead spots or air pockets after you add the water. I has to stir up the sand bed to try to remove these and it is a royal pain. I would say add water (to the salinity you want), either sand or LR (you want to make sure the rock is firmly on the glass bottom, to avoid toppling). Some suggest (and it's a good idea) to leave a few inches of water lower than you want in order to adjust the salinity. Keep in mind, a hydrometer will not measure as accurately as a refractometer (especially if the water is cold). I would say 1 jumbo shrimp (raw and unseasoned) per 30G. Some folks also put the shrimp in bags with holes or media bags to make it easier to remove (I just let mine decay and the clean up crew finished them off after the cycle, when I added them).
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Old 09-19-2007, 12:21 AM   #3
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Need suggestions for sump and other equipment

I am a newbie to the SW hobby and this is about my third post on the forum. I've been reading a lot of articles and posts as well as reading some books. I bought a 90 gallon with a built in overflow. I also bought a used sump with protein skimmer. From the photo, you will see that I am just about finished with my DIY stand. Canopy will come later.

Any suggestions on media I should put in my sump and where. As you can see from the photo, the water from the tank goes into the first section, then the protein skimmer is in the middle, followed by a canister filter. Right now, I only have the pump for the skimmer and a return pump. If recommended that I use the canister filter also, where should I place that pump? I bought a ball valve for the return pump, but should I also use one on the overflow from the tank?

Last thoughts. I've read some posts on cycling, and I am going to use some raw shrimp. I also am going to use live rock and sand in the tank, so what I've gathered is to put these in the tank as well during the cycling period, correct? So is the best order to get my cycling going, put lr and ls in tank first, then mix water in the tank and sump (despite cloudiness), then add the raw shrimp?

Any suggestions on brand or type of heater, thermometer, refractometer I should buy for this setup?

Appreciate any help.
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Old 09-19-2007, 10:13 AM   #4
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suggestions on media I should put in my sump and where
Rock rubble is a commonly used media. Looks like you may only have room for it in the left chamber - I presume/you say where the water returns. By the time yuo put the main return pump in the right chamber, doesn't look like ther'll be room for rocks.

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I bought a ball valve for the return pump, but should I also use one on the overflow from the tank?
Guess I'm not a fan of a ball valve on the return. What would it be used for? Getting the right sized pump for your system gives you the desired gph. IMO, why alter that?

Quote:
So is the best order to get my cycling going, put lr and ls in tank first, then mix water in the tank and sump (despite cloudiness), then add the raw shrimp?
I'd recommend the following. Put a heavy polyurethane coating on the inside of that cabinet. Gonna be a lot of water happenin's going on down there over time.

Fill the entire system with FW and turn on all the pump, bells, and whistles to ensure there are no leaks and everything works. Clean/rinse your sand (assuming you go dry aragonite stuff). Target your rock sources. Use some un-cured, dry base or other rocks.

I'd mix my SW in the empty tank and turn a couple of PH's on it to ensure mixing. Use the cup per gallon guidance on the salt bucket, but don't forget the water in the sump. Fill it only 3/4 of the way up with water since rocks and sand will displace a lot.

Have the sand and rocks in place when you add the shrimp so that thosebacteria you create when cycling will have a place to take up residence.

You can get a real decent refractometer on-line for 30 bucks or so. Make sure it has a callibration wheel. Just distilled water to do that. I prefer heaters that have a remote sensor (wired though). I put the sensor in my overflow and the heater in the sump.

Keep us posted on your progress.
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Old 09-19-2007, 01:29 PM   #5
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IMO I would mix the water and salt in the tank first get your salinity where it needs to be then I would add rock and sand and shrimp and cycle the tank and cure the LR at the same time. Good luck on the start up.
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Old 09-19-2007, 01:42 PM   #6
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Double Post. Combined with other post in General Hardware and equipment discussion.
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Old 09-19-2007, 07:40 PM   #7
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Clean/rinse your sand (assuming you go dry aragonite stuff). Target your rock sources. Use some un-cured, dry base or other rocks.


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I would add rock and sand and shrimp and cycle the tank and cure the LR at the same time.
Thank you for your comments. It sounds like you both are saying for me to buy uncured rock. Is this because this is a new setup? I was planning on buying live sand and cured rock, should I not? To save money, I was going to also buy some base rock and other sand as well. What do you think?
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Old 09-19-2007, 10:10 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by brigoody
It sounds like you both are saying for me to buy uncured rock. Is this because this is a new setup? I was planning on buying live sand and cured rock, should I not? To save money, I was going to also buy some base rock and other sand as well. What do you think?
If that is what you want than by all means go ahead. Cured LR is going to cost alot more which is what I got for my tank. It is easier but more costly. If you buy uncured LR online it will be alot cheaper and you can cure it while you cycle the tank. I bought 200 lbs of cured LR from my LFS at 8.99 a lb. You do the math. 8O
As far as LS I would buy a bag of dry sand and seed it with a couple cups of sand from your LFS tank. That supposed LS is not really live. HTH
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Old 09-20-2007, 04:39 PM   #9
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Thanks melosu for the info, but now that you and others have mentioned using uncured rock for my cycling, I'm trying to find the easiest and best way for a newbie such as myself.

I have read many articles on curing live rock in a new setup and there are many different ways. some say to save the stuff in the bottom of the box, some say to have sand in the tank, and so on. I do understand that water changes is important, but what curing process do people recommend, again, I am new to the hobby and I'll have to get used to mixing water and such.

I know this is probably the wrong forum for this topic, but since it has been brought up, I will probably use live uncured rock if a newbie can be successful at it.
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Old 09-20-2007, 05:22 PM   #10
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IMO I would just use the LR and cycle and cure at the same time. Read this

http://www.aquariumadvice.com/articl...aq=2&fldAuto=6
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