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Old 02-21-2005, 01:04 PM   #1
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New SW Setup

We went out to buy a desk and came home with a SW tank. Dunno how it happened but here we go

We are planning on a FOWLR tank. No idea on the critter list yet but will probably be a community tank.

55 gal tank w/ stand
Berlin Airlift 60 skimmer
AquaClear 110 Filter
250 watt heater
200 watt heater (extra)
azoo air pump 5500
AquaClear Powerhead Model 20
AquaClear Powerhead Model 50
45 lbs of crushed coral
ocean natural sea salt mix
topfin power filter 60 (extra)
40 lbs caribbean LR from LR.com
2 x 5 gallon buckets

The tank is being tested for integrity now. We are thinking the LR will get here this weekend to start on the cycle.

Are we missing anything?

Thanks a ton for all yalls help!
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Old 02-21-2005, 02:01 PM   #2
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before you get too far into it you may want to reconsider the CC substrate. It will work fine but does require extra care. If it is not vacuumed regularly the detritus will build up and cause nitrate problems. Good luck
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28gal bowfront
40lbs livesand(bag from LFS), 30lbs live rock(LR.com)
2 O. Clowns
1 peppermint shrimp, 5 red leg hermit crabs,
4 mexican turbo snails, 15 nassarius snails
ricordea mushroom, candy cane coral,
super color polyps, hairy mushrooms
bubble coral, hawiian feather duster
coralife lunar 2x65, HOT magnum canister
10 Gal refugium(chaeto) & seaclone skimmer
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Old 02-21-2005, 02:21 PM   #3
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We went out to buy a desk and came home with a SW tank
I know the feeling. We went to buy a new dinnet set and came home with a chainsaw carving of a bear dressed like a lumberjack. Go figure.

Set up looks good, if possible, you might want to not use CC substrate and go with LS. It require a lot less work and does not have a tendency to produce high nitrates like CC does. The only things I would suggest are to get a good water test kit (for Ammonia, nitrtie, nitrate, Ph, Alk and CA) and a good book. I like "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist" By Robert Fenner.

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Old 02-21-2005, 02:29 PM   #4
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Yes, consider going with sand. Also you will not need the air pump.
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Old 02-21-2005, 02:45 PM   #5
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Don't need the air pump! LOL! Good thing it was cheap...but seriously, we got the air pump to run the skimmer..a bad choice? We were going to use the bigger PH to add current and the smaller PH to mix saltwater.

What sand should we use? The LS available is kinda expensive ( I know, everything is expensive!).

Thanks!
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Old 02-21-2005, 03:02 PM   #6
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What sand should we use? The LS available is kinda expensive
Any aragonite playsand will be okay. Just make sure is in not silica sand. eople here like Southdown sand from Home Depot. Any sand substrate you use will become LS over time. No need to buy the "LS" sold in the bags at the LFS. You are right, it is espensive and is really just wet dead sand.
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Old 02-21-2005, 03:20 PM   #7
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I'm not sure about your skimmer setup. Mine runs a pump that has a connected airline to it which causes the bubbles in the water. The skimmer is an excellent addition to your tank. A good one of those is worth its weight in gold. I run 2 heaters in my main tank as a backup for one another. I also have an extra heater for my QT and another for mixing saltwater. The flow in your tank should be 10-20x your volume so you should have between 500 & 1000wpg of flow in your tank.

If that Aquaclear is a wet/dry you should consider putting LR rubble in instead of the bio balls from the start. That will help keep your nitrates down in the long run.

Ditto on trading your CC back for sand. Even the dry sand from the LFS is better than using the CC.

Sounds like you're prepared to do fishless cycling. That's great. You may not see much of a cycle from your LR.com rock because it comes in pretty clean so you may need to add a grocery store raw shrimp to the mix to get it started.

Good luck and ENJOY! And WELCOME To AA!!!
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Old 02-21-2005, 03:54 PM   #8
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If the skimmer uses the air pump it may not be the most effective. The venturi style setups are much more efficient. What you have will work though.
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28gal bowfront
40lbs livesand(bag from LFS), 30lbs live rock(LR.com)
2 O. Clowns
1 peppermint shrimp, 5 red leg hermit crabs,
4 mexican turbo snails, 15 nassarius snails
ricordea mushroom, candy cane coral,
super color polyps, hairy mushrooms
bubble coral, hawiian feather duster
coralife lunar 2x65, HOT magnum canister
10 Gal refugium(chaeto) & seaclone skimmer
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Old 02-21-2005, 04:07 PM   #9
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I don't think it's a wet/dryfilter...but a power filter. If there is a difference in such things
http://www.elmersaquarium.com/h112aquaclears.htm

We're using the big one that says it has 500gph flow. Looks like it's one thats supposed to do all 3 filtrations at once. How is that going to work with the LR? Too much bio filtration?

The protein skimmer box says (air pump not included). We assumed we had to attach an air pump to it

We're off to HD later tonight to see if they have any sand. Then we'll drain the tank. No leaks!
Should we "wash" the sand before we lay it in the tank? I am afraid we're going to deluge this forum with noob questions!
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Old 02-22-2005, 01:07 PM   #10
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"ocean natural sea salt mix"

If you mean oceanic, I would return this for instant ocean. There are problems with low PH / Alk with this salt, too many other good salts out there without this issue. I am having problems with this salt as we speak, don't risk it.

"Are we missing anything?"

Thermometer (never trust the heater alone), hydrometer, and I recommend getting a top notch skimmer (maybe return the Berlin, Aquaclear 110, airpump?) like the Aqua C or BaKPaK II. With the LR, the hob filter is not needed. A filter just traps waste and bacteria (more harm than good), a skimmer pulls organic waste out of the water into a a collection cup (does no harm).
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Old 02-22-2005, 01:16 PM   #11
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Yep, we did get the Oceanic. We have to go take back our crushed coral anyhow, so we can return the salt as well for something better. We do have a thermometer and hydrometer.

Another question we have is will the "hitchhikers" on our live rock survive the cycling process? Because we are planning on cycling the tank with a mixture of base/live rock (probably about half and half, 70 - 75 lbs total rock). I don't want our little critters to die, though, if we get any.

Any idea why we can find LR online for like $2.50/lb, but all the LFS sell it for $7+? Even with shipping it's cheaper online. Anyone ever have luck finding decently priced LR from a LFS?

We tried looking for silica-free sand yesterday and had no luck. It looks like this stuff is hard to come by. HD had none, neither did Lowes, wally world, LFS, even hobby lobby. Ugh I don't wanna pay $25 / 10 lbs of LS.
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Old 02-22-2005, 11:25 PM   #12
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"Any idea why we can find LR online for like $2.50/lb,"

hmm, maybe around $3/lb http://www.marinedepotlive.com/lr.html or http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...359323788&rd=1

"I don't want our little critters to die, though, if we get any."

Have a tub of change water ready, to save them you'll need to do frequent water changes.

Did you call local Home depots and have them check the SKU? The HD SKU for Old Castle Tropical is 578-819 - only works for HD I think. They may be able to tell you nearest store that has it.

"Ugh I don't wanna pay $25 / 10 lbs of LS."
I don't blame you, that stuff is worthless. Buy dry sand, it will turn live from your LR. Check this post (pretty long) and see if anyone in your area has found some, maybe someone can ship you a bag.
http://www.aquariumadvice.com/viewto...asc&highlight=
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Old 02-23-2005, 11:48 PM   #13
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Woohoo! Got the Yard Right sand tonight. Hope 120 pounds is going to be enough. We did run into a small snag, though. Looks like the plae where we want the tank is just sightly not level...but with only a couple of gallons of water in the tank you can see there's a diference in water level.

Think this spells disaster at some point?

Anyhow, the sand is going in tomorrow and the shipment comes in on Friday...we're excited!
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Old 02-24-2005, 03:31 AM   #14
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Got the Yard Right sand tonight
Good deal

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Think this spells disaster at some point?
What is the difference in each side? IMO, each side should be within 1/4 inch of the other. Higher and it stresses the tank unevenly and can lead to fractures, leaks. Try to shim it or level it, be worth the time spent in long run.
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Old 02-24-2005, 01:30 PM   #15
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Well it's the floor that's unlevel, not the tank apparently. Taking measurements inside and out of the tank, everything is the exact same on both sides, and a level shows it to be the same inside the tank as on top of the stand. We put the level on the floor and it was the same amount lopsided, so... must be the floor. It's only off by a little bit. the tank is 48" long, and the water is higher on one side by 1/2" more than the other. Do you think putting a towel or something along those lines under the one side of the stand would help? That way it's part of the surface underneath the stand and not something it's trying to balance on with all the weight. and hopefully it would give just enough added height to the one side to make it level. That was my idea anyhow
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Old 02-25-2005, 04:21 AM   #16
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I don't know the best method for "shiming" it. Maybe someone else will chime in. I do think you absolutely have to address that though, IMO. I hope it works out for you..
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Old 02-25-2005, 10:01 AM   #17
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Where did you find the yardright sand?
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Old 02-25-2005, 08:39 PM   #18
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One of the Reef guys from around here apparently ordered a couple of PALLETS straight from the manufacturer. He has it in Dallas and makes trips up there and brings it down here (Austin area). Anyhow, we got 3 40lb bags for $45.
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