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Randy
Regular Member
Username: milesteg

Post Number: 245
Registered: 01-2006


Posted on Wednesday, March 29, 2006 - 04:43 pm:       

Tank prep
I started with a 55 gallon tank that I had sitting around for the last 15 years. I bought a couple of tubes of silicone sealant and resealed all the inside corners and most importantly under the top frame. The top frame had come loose when I was using it as a freshwater and water would wick up over the glass and dribble down the sides. So I removed the whole top frame and squeezed a whole tube inside the notch where the glass goes. Then mushed the frame back down on the glass and applied 2 cotes of sealant around the inside.

Stand
I had an iron stand from fish keeping years of old which I repainted.

Placement
I set the stand up in the basement against a wall of the utility room. This wall had a heater vent about a foot from the floor, which placed it behind the lower 40 gallon tank. I relocated this heater vent to about 5’-6” from the floor, well above the Saltwater tank and lighting.

I then paneled the back side of this wall to clean thing up, but left the hole where the heater vent was to pass filter hoses and electrical wires through.

I then had to level the tank stand with wooden blocks I ran through my wood surfacer.

Note: I think I placed the tank with the most scratched side to the front. Poop! I don’t know who I will be able to get to help me turn it around.. I figure that I can still do this before I get too far along with the Live Rock by empting the water to the gravel line and removing the rock that is in there. Two people should then be able to lift and turn the tank around.

Filter
I am starting with a Jebo Odyssea Canister Filter. This is a 350gph 4-stage filter (I don’t believe the 350gph specification, probably tested with no restriction on the lines and no media either). The first stage of the filter is mechanical floss pad. The second and third are ceramic bio-tubes and the fourth is a bag of ammonia pellets. I am considering on getting one of those surface skimmers that can be connected to a canister filter. Other filter types are a consideration as well.

Lighting
I am currently using a 260 watt Compact florescent, Consisting of 4x65 watt Compact bulbs, 2 actinic, 2 daylight. Plus the light has 4 moon lights.

Substrate
I used the Crushed coral I had in a 29 gallon tank 15 years ago. Back then I used an under gravel filter power be a power head. This crushed coral might be too deep in the 55 gallon tank, I’ll see how it looks when I bet the base rock in.

Start-Up
With the crushed coral in the tank and the filter set up I filled the tank with RO water and started the filter running. After a week I added sea salt for a 50-gallon tank. After another week I started adding “Cycle” every couple of days. I would also dump in leftover brine shrimp and even a bag or 2 of brine water. Total time before adding any fish was 4 weeks.

Week 5 - First fish
I add 3 Blue Damsels (3 for $16).

Week 6 – First Base and Live Rock
I bought 20 lbs of tufa rock for a start at building up a base ($1.69/lb). Ouch! That made a pitifully small base for $34. Next came to pieces of Live Rock from two different places. I bought Kent’s “Marine Essentials” from one place and the next day I was told (from someone I trust more) that what I really need to get the coral started is “Calcium reactor” and “Iodine”. This guy from Aquatics Unlimited (www.bestfish.com) that I should dose the tank every night with the Calcium until I see the coral start to respond and the Iodine once a week. Afraid that I might overdose the tank too quickly with the calcium I reduced the recommended dose to about a third and dose that daily for now. At the time of this writing it has been 3 days.

Week 6 - March 27
I am seeing the start of algae growth. A tiny bit on the glass but also on the Live rock.
I have pictures I will post tonight.
If you go through a day without learning something new, you wasted it!
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flyingfish
Regular Member
Username: flyingfish

Post Number: 425
Registered: 01-2006
Posted on Wednesday, March 29, 2006 - 05:45 pm:       

Be careful lifting the tank. I had a tank once I moved with wet gravel in it and the bottom gave way. Tempered glass might not do this or be more resistant to it. EDIT* DOH! I just realized its prolly too late for this

FYI I just moved my 90 around because when I setup a scratch was in the front....I wanted it in the back. I had to drain her 100% and remove 90% of the gravel before it budged. I did it by myself. The tank is 160 lbs dry tho.

Sounds like you didnt exactly jump into this it sounds well planned out and you sound like an experienced fishkeeper to boot.

Ive heard iodine is also good for crustaceans in freshwater too. Just not the same dosage.

Do you mean a calcium reactor? Like the piece of equipment or is their a magic liquid in a bottle called "calcium reactor"? Hehe the calcium reactor is the the thing I cant wait to buy for my saltwater tank. Next to the pressurised co2 its the most advanced thing I will have to show off. LOL. I am such a technogeek.

Sounds like its going great, thanks for reminding me I will be sure to keep track and follow your adventures with SW and the Discus.
Filter and heater $80
65 gallon aquarium $280
Gazing at your Apistogramma for hours on end.....
PRICELESS!!!
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Randy
Regular Member
Username: milesteg

Post Number: 246
Registered: 01-2006


Posted on Wednesday, March 29, 2006 - 08:24 pm:       

Hi,
as you surmised I have been planning and reading. I am writing a log of the progress. I did make a mistake when I wrote the part about the "Calcium Reactor", it is a Kent product called "Liquid Reactor".

I talked a friend into helping me turn the tank around.

Where are the pictures of your Saltwater tank? And don't tell us you havent taken any.
If you go through a day without learning something new, you wasted it!
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Randy
Regular Member
Username: milesteg

Post Number: 247
Registered: 01-2006


Posted on Wednesday, March 29, 2006 - 08:56 pm:       

Link to Saltwater Pictures.
http://www.badmanstropicalfish.com/species-gallery/gallery_main.html/photo-gallery/thumbnails.php?album=294
If you go through a day without learning something new, you wasted it!
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flyingfish
Regular Member
Username: flyingfish

Post Number: 435
Registered: 01-2006
Posted on Thursday, March 30, 2006 - 12:33 am:       

hell I dont have SW yet... I will in about 5 years and $10,000 later tho.....i refered to it as mine....not mine yet.

I am digging that dual tank stand..
Filter and heater $80
65 gallon aquarium $280
Gazing at your Apistogramma for hours on end.....
PRICELESS!!!
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Randy
Regular Member
Username: milesteg

Post Number: 248
Registered: 01-2006


Posted on Thursday, March 30, 2006 - 08:29 am:       

The Stand is nice, in a way. I could use a 10-12 year youngly, one with long skinny arms to clean the glass. There is not much room to work. Before I restarted this fisk keeping hobby, I contemplated using the 40-gallon tank as a Wet/dry filter.

Oh - You should be able to set up a SW for something less than $10,000, I'm absolutly sure you could get away with $9,500. :-)
If you go through a day without learning something new, you wasted it!
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flyingfish
Regular Member
Username: flyingfish

Post Number: 445
Registered: 01-2006
Posted on Friday, March 31, 2006 - 08:18 am:       

LOL! now that Ive found bigals and trust some guys on ebay I think your right. I already have the RO/DI thats a small step...I will need another one tho for backup. I have one going under my kitchen sink soon so I will have at least an RO backup, no DI. I am working on learning everything I can about sumps and may start SW for my future refugium..... in like a year or two. I havent gotten that far yet in research.

The tenecor acylic & $tand are going to be the most expensive thing$.

The 40 makes such a nice FW tank....make ur own wet/dry out of rubbermaid or plexi.
Filter and heater $80
65 gallon aquarium $280
Gazing at your Apistogramma for hours on end.....
PRICELESS!!!
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Randy
Regular Member
Username: milesteg

Post Number: 254
Registered: 01-2006


Posted on Friday, March 31, 2006 - 08:52 am:       

15 years ago I had a SW tank and I made a wet/dry out of a Rubbermaid garbage can.
If you go through a day without learning something new, you wasted it!
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flyingfish
Regular Member
Username: flyingfish

Post Number: 446
Registered: 01-2006
Posted on Friday, March 31, 2006 - 07:17 pm:       

15 years ago I dreamed about all this stuff!!

Filter and heater $80
65 gallon aquarium $280
Gazing at your Apistogramma for hours on end.....
PRICELESS!!!
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Randy
Regular Member
Username: milesteg

Post Number: 258
Registered: 01-2006


Posted on Friday, March 31, 2006 - 09:06 pm:       

I can see reef creatures starting to show up on the live rock!
If you go through a day without learning something new, you wasted it!
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Megan
Regular Member
Username: jacksonsmom25

Post Number: 731
Registered: 01-2005


Posted on Wednesday, April 05, 2006 - 06:22 pm:       

So randy, what are your plans for this tank? its it going to be a reef or Fish only?
Some people are like Slinkies. Not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you see one tumble down the stairs.

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Randy
Regular Member
Username: milesteg

Post Number: 274
Registered: 01-2006


Posted on Wednesday, April 05, 2006 - 08:52 pm:       

Reef most definitely!
If you go through a day without learning something new, you wasted it!
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Megan
Regular Member
Username: jacksonsmom25

Post Number: 733
Registered: 01-2005


Posted on Thursday, April 06, 2006 - 01:29 pm:       

whats your next step?
my 29g at 6 weeks. nothing special just added some lowlight corals. everything is doing well..knock on wood
Some people are like Slinkies. Not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you see one tumble down the stairs.

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Randy
Regular Member
Username: milesteg

Post Number: 285
Registered: 01-2006


Posted on Thursday, April 06, 2006 - 03:30 pm:       

Oh come on Megan, you have to tell me more than that. I'm glad to have someone at close to the same stage as me, so please tell me more about how your first 6 weeks went. Maybe you should start a new thread "Megan's Reef tank - week 6".

what type of filtering?
Where is you tank placed?
What kind and how much lighting?
What are you dosing your tank with? (Look for Week 7)

I see a banded coral shrimp! ( I love those - I have a story about mine from 15 years ago I'll share sometime)

Do I see a "NO-NO"! Are you leaving your magnetic glass cleaning pad in your tank! That could be very bad if there is so much as a tiny hole thought the plastic.

As for my next step, I'll talk about that in my week 7 post. How's that? I'll have more pictures. How about you? Need close ups!
If you go through a day without learning something new, you wasted it!
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Kenny
Regular Member
Username: kennyman

Post Number: 635
Registered: 05-2005


Posted on Sunday, April 09, 2006 - 07:58 pm:       

wow you two sure got started up fast. All my Live rock had just finished rotting out by six weeks. Just in time for the cyano blob came knocking!
I'm only a Landscaper; not an English Teacher.
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Megan
Regular Member
Username: jacksonsmom25

Post Number: 739
Registered: 01-2005


Posted on Monday, April 10, 2006 - 12:08 pm:       

you must have started with uncured live rock?
all my rock i got locally and was cured with all kinds of awesome filter feeding creatures on it.
It only took 2 weeks to completely cycle.
My 10g nano, I started 1 week ago today, has just finished cycling, but my sand I got from a friend so it was REAL live sand apposed to the bagged stuff, which is live but has allot of die off which causes the cycle. i think im rambling.
YOu must be on week 7 by now right? should be almost done...do you know what your water paras. are?
Some people are like Slinkies. Not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you see one tumble down the stairs.

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