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Thread: What's next?
12-29-2011, 8:46 PM #11
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I'm right there with you, on the getting bored. I set up my 75 gallon reef, over a year ago, then bought a 120 gallon plexi-glass tank, in april, set it up in May. I'm looking to upgrade to led's, and get a better skimmer, for the 75. I just bought a yellow Tang, for my 120, and I have a blue eyed tang in there, as well. I bought a yellow eyed tang, for the 75, and all are doing well, except the yellow tang. He's a little emaciated, from sitting in the dealer tank. I'm fatteneing him up, with nori, lots of formula II, and emerald entree. When I 1st started, I felt that excitement, too. New equipment, new coral, new fish, all the information to go over, and learn about. Now, I search the classifieds, for deals on used equipment. Have you checked out the back posts, on here, and other sites? There is a ton of info., and pictures to check out. I subscribe to several magazines, and I buy books, occasionally, to keep my interest. Google search, any questions, you might get. A lot of the time, when I do, I find a whole slew of new questions, that I never thought of, from simple questions, like, "What's the best color temp. for macro/microalgae?" or "Who makes the best bulbs for soft coral, hard coral, lps, anemones, and what color temps. are best, for each?" Have you tried a local reefing club? Do you frag your coral, and have you tried trading with someone, also, in the hobby? Youtube.com has some nice video's on reefing. If you search reef tank, you'll get over 20,000 video's! Ati's, I've heard, are good bulbs, and you can get them at bulkreefsupply.com, for pretty cheap. About $20 a bulb, for the 48" one's. (That's the size I use, but the 36" one's should be a bit less.) If your looking to save money, bulkreefsupply.com has 2-part, gfo, and carbon, for way cheap. I use petsolutions.com, for reef crystals. Their between $47.99, and $53.99, for the 200 gallon box, free shipping, over $49, no freight charges. All this stuff, I wish I had found online, when I first started my reef tank. I don't work for any of those companies, I just found them to be cheaper, than anyone else, with the same quality stuff. I don't use filter socks, but I understand your noise problem. You could always attach a piece of pvc, to the outflow, notching it first, with a saw, crosswise several times, to allow water to flow freely. It will exit the sides, as well as the end, reducing splashing, but not limiting flow. You can use stainless steel clamps or those plastic ratchet clamps, found on reef equipment sites. The stainles ones will deteriorate, eventually, like, mine have. You could experiment with different foods, to keep things exciting. Making your own food or trying the latest, and greatest. Led technology is geeting cheaper, and better all the time. You might be better off, getting good T5 bulbs, for now, and waiting for the technology to stabilize, a little more. That's what I'm doing(but I'll tell you, I'm getting impatient to try some of them, and will, probably, get new fixtures, this upcoming year!). I was asking myself this same question, about two or three months ago, then I realized that the hobby hadn't gotten stale, I'd gotten busy over the summer, and hadn't gotten motivated, when winter hit. Looking at the tank is nice, but that's not the only reason I got into the hobby. Incidentally, I think you have your skimmer set too low. I clean out my skimmer cup, at least, once a week, sometimes more. With a 125, you don't have to worry, about salinity swings, as much, and it really helps, with pollution, in the tank. Try going a little wetter. If your having trouble with ich, and sps, you probably, have nutrient issues, since everything else seems okay. I have T5's, and I have an orange monti, some kind of acropora, and a tri-colored birdsnest, and all are fine. Just place them up high, on the rock, and don't move them around, unless they seem to be having problems. Start, on the sandbed, and move them up a couple of inches, a week, at a time. Slow, and steady. It sounds like your not changing out your gfo enough. I change mine out every two weeks, whether I need to or not. I have to clean my glass, every two or three days, since I just changed my bulbs, a little while ago, but I use well water. You might want to step up to weekly water changes, of 10%. Glad to see you didn't just toss in the towel. I've had salty tanks, in the past, and have been a aquarium hobbyist, since I fed my neon tetras to the cat.(I was 3, and I figured, the fish looked lonely, and the cat wanted to play. Who could it hurt?) I drop out, occasionally, but I always come back, if I can. Keep looking around. You'll find some corner of the hobby you'll want to explore. You just have to be persistent, and have a good attitude.
12-29-2011, 9:41 PM #12
I think this all sounds good. I bough one set of filter socks today and replaced the old ones right away. I'll get a few more a start a rotation as you suggested. I am due for a water change this weekend. I did all of the tests that I have and here are the params currently:
Alk 7 dKh
(obviously I got a littel crazy with my magnesium dosing and my alk dosing is behind).
12-29-2011, 9:47 PM #13
12-29-2011, 9:51 PM #14
12-29-2011, 10:07 PM #15
Thanks for your posts everyone. I am going to follow the advice and just work to improve my take and make everything just right. I'm going to order new bulbs and get some more filter socks right away. Greech, when you say "step up water changes" what do you really mean? Do you mean do less water every week? Currently I make about 25 gallons every two weeks. So would that be 10 - 15 gallons every week for a while?
12-30-2011, 3:09 AM #16
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15 gallons per week wouldn't be bad.. it's what I'd be doing for an sps tank
What's your phosphate at?
Temp 79 ok
Salinity 1.0245 Good
Nitrates 5 <--waterchange.. reef biofuel? Fuge light out or gone bad? switch fuge lighting to 6700k cfl?
Alk 7 dKh <-- A bitlow raise slowly to i dunno 10~12dkh
Calc 550 <-- stop dosing calcium till 420
Mag 1600 <-- high enough to kill bryopsis.. stop dosing this too and waterchange it out
Last edited by Arakkis; 12-30-2011 at 3:20 AM.Collector of the rare and weird. Still don't have a Sand Worm yet =)
12-30-2011, 8:57 AM #17
I don't have a phosphate test kit. I am going to get one of those digital phosphate checkers and test it. I'm pretty sure that it is time to change out my GFO. I'm going to do a water change this weekend, dose Alk only, and change out my GFO. I am going to do 25 gallons this week since that is what I have made up already. I will check all of my parameters a day or two after that. I'll go to 15 gallons a week for while and see how that changes things.
12-30-2011, 10:13 AM #18
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IME, as long as alk is stable a lower number isn't an issue. If Ca stays up and you don't have preciptation the ionic balance is in place and (again IMO) there is no reason to constantly fiddle with it. Persoannally, with the number and types of corals you have, I am surprised you need to dose anything other than a little Mg now and then.
Tank looks great. I would kill to have that setup!
I don't know how many fish you have in there (saw the trigger, clown, foxface, what looks like a damsel and a PJ cardinal). If that's all you have you have plenty of room for more fish and if you donlt want tangs I would consider adding smaller fish like a blenny, some gobies and pistols, possible a group of firefish or grammas. Big fish are nice but the little fish that hop/hover around the rocks are very entertaining to watch and create a lot of movement.
Tank really does look nice! Congrats and enjoy !SG = 1.024-6; Alkalinity 8.3-9.3 dKH; Calcium 420; Magnesium 1300; Temp = 76 to 80; pH = 7.9-8.3. Alkalinity and calcium are dependent on Mg.
"You can't be half a gangster" - Jimmy Darmody, Boardwalk Empire
12-30-2011, 11:55 AM #19
Thanks for the compliment Greech. You got most of the fish correct. My favorite are the Blue Throat Trigger and the Maroom Clown. I have an Ocellaris Clown (one of a pair whose mate died), 4 or 5 Green Chromis (I was going for the small fish idea you mentioned), a Pajama Cardinal, a Yellow Watchman Goby (I got this from ORA so he's not really yellow), Foxface (I got this guy because he would eat algae off of the rocks and he wasn't a tang). I was wanting to get more of the smaller type of fish. I like all of your suggestions.
I also have two cleaner shrimp, the Urchin you see in the pics, a Gold Banded Coral Shrimp (that I never see!), and s slew of hermit crabs, snails and a few emerald crabs.
By the way, I just went to Bulk Reef Supply and ordered the ATI bulbs and 4 more new filter socks. I think just getting this thread going and getting active on here again has helped me a ton. Thanks to everyone!
01-06-2012, 1:23 PM #20
I received my order from Bulk Reef Supply last night. I got one of those Hanna phosphate checkers and the ATI bulbs we discussed. I checked my phosphates last night and they read 0.11 ppm. I think that is a little high, right? I thought they were supplosed to be below 0.1 ppm. I hadn't looked at my TDS meter on my RO/DI system for a while. Last night I checked it and it was reading 16. Oops! So, I changed out all of my RO/DI cartridges right away. I am planning a water change first thing tomorrow morning. I am sure that is probably why my phosphates are that high.
On the ATI bulbs I'm going with the 4 Aqua Blue Plus, 1 Aquablue Special, and one UVL SuperActinic. I'm going to start the change out tomorrow and probably do a couple bulbs every few days. I hope the Aqua Blue Plus have some "white" to them. The picture on the box shows a blue bulb. I hope I don't have 5 blue bulbs and only one white one. I also have a UVL Aquasun that I bought only a month or two ago. I guess I can keep that one in there if the 4 Aqua Blue Plus are too blue. I'm going to give it a shot and see how it looks though. I'll post some pics once I get all of the new bulbs up and running.
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