Getting back in the game after a long break....

Discussion in 'Welcome!' started by SANdMAN, Jun 25, 2018.

  1. SANdMAN

    SANdMAN Guest

    I'm coming back to the hobby after a 18 year break. My original tank was a 100 gal, 5 inch sand bed , 40 lbs live rock, 4x96w compact fluorescents and a cpr backpack skimmer. As far as livestock, I had a blue tang, dragonet, 2 clowns, a cleaner shrimp, a tuxedo urchin and a red and black Sea cucumber (I remember Rob Toonen saying that it was edible, but I trusted him and took his word for it). I had tons of pulsing xenia, a yellow leather and some green calcium plant that my tang didn't want to eat. At one point I was given a seaweed the had small round leaves, but my tang ate it faster than it could grow. I made several attempts with hard corals, but never had any success.

    It was a great tank for two years, until I broke up with my gf and moved out....which made it hard to maintain. Amazingly enough, the dragonet was the last man standing, prob because he had a seemingly endless supply of sand critters to eat.

    So fast fed 18 years and I have a 75 gal that is begging to get drilled for an overflow and for me to build a stand. I'm planning on going with the same basic setup - Xenia, clowns, a cleaner shrimp, purple tang and a dragonet (not all at once of course and not in that order).

    I'm planning on another deep sand bed + live rock + skimmer with led lighting. But first I gotta drill the tank and build the stand. Hopefully once I get going, I can trade a cup of dead sand for a cup of live sand to seed my sand bed with some other members :)
    tankguy likes this.
  2. euod

    euod Supporting Member

    Got sand and live rocks if you're in sf
  3. Newjack

    Newjack Supporting Member

    cant wait to see it come to life.
  4. Flagg37

    Flagg37 Supporting Member

    Welcome. The hobby has definitely made some changes in the last 18 years. I don’t think too many are running dsb’s anymore. Many in fact are going bare bottom.
  5. Ibn

    Ibn Guest

    No real need to go DSB if that's all that you're considering about keeping. The live rocks will probably take care of it; if not, toss in some of the new stuff that were introduced in the 18 years that you've been gone for - biological bricks (e.g. Marinepure, Brightwell, etc.), chaeto/refugium/ATS, oversized skimmer.

    My tank back then (1999) also had a 4" deep sandbed, but I haven't seen a need for anything more than say 2" of sand in the tank. Currently have 1" of sand in the 87G and very little rock (~20# of Tonga branch) and an employing some of the above (Marinepure brick, chaeto reactor, overskized skimmer) with 15 fish in the tank.
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2018
    Coral reefer likes this.
  6. xcaret

    xcaret Guest

    Welcome back to the hobby!
    Depending on where you are located, some of us could lend a hand.
    18 years is a long time away from the hobby!
  7. SANdMAN

    SANdMAN Guest

    Thanks for the encouragement and warm welcome everyone!

    euod - I'm in the South Bay, but when the time comes I'll be more than happy to make the trek up to the city and trade you some sand/rocks.

    lbn - I'm definitely going light on the bio load on the tank. I noticed dsb's have fallen out of fashion...part of my planned dsb is to support the dragonet and part is because watching the little pods, worms and "things" move about.

    Hopefully I'll be chopping up some 2x4's this weekend for the stand :) I'll be sure to post my progress as it comes together!
  8. Ibn

    Ibn Guest

    Let me know if you need help or if you want to trade a cup of dead sand with a cup of my live. In the South Bay as well (Campbell/Santa Clara).
  9. JVU



    I also used to have a DSB way back in the day, and my 2 cents is that the more modern methods of nutrient export are much more effective, fool-proof, and safe. I would never go back unless I had to for the sake of one of the animals. Even then, I would minimize it.

    The DSB gets rid of nitrate predominantly, but leaves other nutrients like phosphates behind, which when unbalanced can cause other problems. The newer methods of biomass export (refugium with bright LED grow light, algae turf scrubber, or carbon dosing with skimmer) all have the huge benefit of reducing nutrients in about the same proportion that they are added to the tank.

    The microfauna that develops in the sand is cool, but you will get it with shallow sand beds and avoid the issues with deep beds.

    Looking forward to seeing your progress!
    Coral reefer likes this.
  10. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer Past President

    Welcome. Agree on no dsb. Shallow is good enough and much safer.
  11. Rostato

    Rostato Supporting Member

    Welcome back to the hobby. I agree with all comments so far.

    I’m a proponent of bare bottom...allows me to feed a lot more food than I had been in the past

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