OtakuThugster's Mini-reef

Discussion in 'Tank Journals' started by Otakuthugster, Dec 3, 2008.

  1. lol I just noticed that your profile Pic was an EVA, lol all this time I thought it was a crab. I hope the new movie is written well.
  2. Ooh, cool, another anime fan. Definitely check out Evangelion 1.0 - You are (not) alone. They've broken up the series into ~4 HD movies with redone animation and sound - totally badass. 1.0 is out right now, and you might be able to find 2.0 as a torrent.

    BTW, Wu-tang still ain't nothin' to f@*k wit'. I'm even bumpin' GZA on my mp3 player right now.
  3. Going off a few recommendations from fellow BAReefers, I threw a 14kk 150w HQI Phoenix bulb on the tank. I really love the color, white-ish, with a good prominent blue tint, and very little pink and purple tones. The color on the corals also looks great, and everything seems to fluoresce a little more than before.

    The bulb I had on previous, the Aqualine AB 20kk, just had a bit too much purple for my taste. However, I do like the fact that the actinic-look stayed a lot longer on it than any other brand. I'm hoping I get the same results for this Phoenix bulb. It seems like my magnetic ballast tends to burn everything out too quickly, and I find myself replacing bulbs every couple months. But then again, I might not have been installing the previous hqi bulbs correctly; I think I've been putting that little bump thingy on the wrong side during installation.
  4. A_Lee

    A_Lee Guest

    Glad you like the Phoenix so far; I think I'll being sticking with it when it comes time to replace my bulb :)
  5. Yeah it is a great bulb for a great price. I really-really-really-really-really hope the color sticks . From looking at your metal halide post, I think I might also try the Radium since I'm running a magnetic ballast. Also, the Marine Depot reviews seem to say they're pretty identical, 'cept the Radiums make the greens pop more.
  6. A_Lee

    A_Lee Guest

    I feel my Phoenix bulb has lost a little blue since I first fired it up, but not a whole lot. It still has a decent amount of blue though- not like the crappy current USA 14k's! :( Then again, I am not sure how your magnetic ballast might change things; I have an electronic ballast.
  7. Erick

    Erick Guest

    dang, my tank has a long way to go, very nice, and I like your fish. What are the two fish i can't figure out? in the first pic, the one on the top left that is damsel shaped, and the one on the bottom right that is kind of wrasse like.
  8. Nah, you're tank looks just as good; and your frags are a lot bigger or just the same size as mine. I just have a bad habit of squeezing a lot of corals in close proximity of each other ;) DBTC and swaps had a great deal to do with that.

    As far as the fish go, the top, left one is damsel-ish; it's a green chromis. Always gotta have one in my tank. I love the way they school together and aren't as aggressive as other damsels. The bottom, right one is a Christmas Wrasse. You gotta see 'em in person. When the halides shine on 'em, their green stripes starts to glimmer.

    Didn't really want to add this many fish to the tank, but my family keeps bugging me to get more. They always say I have too many colorful sticks and no fish. Bah, oh well, they add character to the aquarium.
  9. 9/01/09
    Birthday Present for Me - Reef Octopus Hang on Back Skimmer


    After getting fed up replacing wooden airstones on my old skimmer, I decided to purchase a Reef Octopus BH-100F, hang on back skimmer. With very few options due to space constraints and no sump, this needle wheel impeller, skimmer seemed like a good match for my set-up. Rated for up to 90 gallons, I went with the internal pump since I can't fit anything wider than a racket ball in the back compartment of the nano-cube. Good thing it fits (snugly at that); otherwise, you would have seen a Reef Octopus for sale thread.

    Now, on to the good stuff: set-up for this skimmer completely sucked. I read reviews on how the instructions were either non-existent or minimal. I kinda brushed those reviews to the side, thinking, "Hey, it's a skimmer. How hard can it be. Grab the power cord, stick it in an outlet, and voila, skimmer set-up in full effect." Once the skimmer arrived, low and behold, there was very little detail for set-up; and guess what, you actually do need a lot of instruction to get this thing to start making foam. With an internal pump, the skimmer has to create some sort of siphon to get the water from the back, aquarium compartment into the skimmer. In order to accomplish this, there is an extra airline attached to the pump, which draws air away from the intake. The thought behind this design seemed well enough; that is, if it actually worked. After spending a few hours tinkering with this airline, I just got fed up and created the siphon the old fashion way; I grabbed an extra airline, threaded it through the intake, and inhaled like there was no tomorrow. Phew, finally the skimmer started working.

    Ugh, but wait, we now have micro bubbles. To remedy this, I decided to place a 200 micron filter sock on the outlet to vanquish the tiny buggers. Very bad idea. The sock started drawing water up to the top and spilling it over the aquarium. Not knowing what the source of the leaking water was, I spent two days trying to find the source of the leak. I guess, in a way, it's good it was the filter sock since an aquarium crack would of been a not-so-happy-birthday-present.

    Eh, after all the painstaking set-up, I guess the skimmer works pretty cool. After all, it's better than having a crappy wooden airstone skimmer. The skimmate is thick and plentiful, so what more can I ask for.

    Here's a few more pics of the skimmer:

    Left side - I should've done a scale picture 'cause this puppy is a lot bigger in person:

    Nano-glo - the skmmer also has a media compartment on the left side, which I use for chaeto, and to help with photosynthesis, I installed this Nano-glo, LED; the design's pretty elemtary and space saving, with a magnet for the wet side and 4 - 1 watt LED's on the other:

    Right side with Phosban reactor:

    And just so I don't bore you with skimmer pics, another FTS:

    One more from the left side of the tank:
  10. 9/04/09
    Not Using Natural Sea Water

    I've recently discontinued using natural sea water in my tank. After reconfiguring my tank a couple months back, I experienced another tank cycling period, indicated by a hair algae outbreak. I tried remedying this by doing several water changes throughout the weeks. The water I've been using was the Sea Pure natural sea water from Pet Club in South City. I had pretty good luck with this water up until I noticed the water changes weren't doin' anything to slow the growth of hair algae. Even after replacing my GFO every couple of weeks, none of the nuisance algae went away. I then contemplated buying an RO/DI. However, I couldn't justify to myself dumping up to 70% of the water as waste. Times are hard as is, and a beefed-up water bill don't help any. So, I decided to head over to Aquatic Central, where they carry RO/DI water, bought a bucket of Seachem Reef Salt, and have been preparing mass batches of saltwater in my garage. So far, so good.
  11. Im also off of NSW.
    I did a large water change back on my 55 and had a HUGE bout with that green slimy snot alge.
  12. Wow, that sucks. I'm battling a banned type of macro algae, myself. It's the mini-lily pad lookin' stuff on the top shelf. They're extremely virulent, and even after large RO/DI water changes, their growth does not cease. After reading Euphylia's phosphate thread, I'm beginning to think there's a bunch of phosphate bound in my rocks.
  13. 10/21/09
    Solving SPS Brown-out (SPS Newbie Revelation)

    ***Reader beware: longer post than you probably want to sit through, but I thought I'd share my experience anyways to those who are searching for the same solution I came upon***

    I initially got into SPS's for the variety of colors: purples on greens, greens on purples, reds on oranges, greens on blues, well, you get the point - a seamless, endless variety of color combinations. For the longest time, I'd purchase a vibrant, color-saturated coral, and within a week, it would slowly turn brown until all its former glory was gone. A select handful of my pieces would retain it's color, but I always seemed to have trouble maintaining purples, reds, and blues. Eventually, I started shying away from these color types. But after seeing various members pics of what my coral would supposedly look like (not to mention how neurotic I am), I got frustrated and started searching far and wide across the internet for a solution.

    Initially, I attributed the brown-out to my underpowered 150w HQI. It seemed like a common factor that other reefers had that I didn't - higher powered lighting that is. I responded by adding supplemental power compacts, trying different bulbs, and different K ratings, but nothing worked. Then, after reading some Advanced Aquarist and Reef Alchemist articles, it seemed phosphate was the more likely suspect: Brown = a lot of zooxanthellae -->> thrive in phosphate rich environments.

    Although I've had softie/LPS saltwater tanks running since the late 90's, phosphate was never made obvious to me as a potential issue. The main concerns during my reef upbringing were the nitrogen compounds: NH4, NO2, and the ever so elusive NO3. Willing to try anything, I purchased a Phosban reactor and GFO. Waiting...waiting...waiting...a few weeks pass...hmm, still no coloring up and still brown. Never a big fan of water testing ('specially for phosphates), I left it at that. However, there was one more phosphate source I was overlooking. Luckily, while browsing through some unread, new posts, I stumbled upon a phosphate thread, which mentioned the use of RO/DI water over any other types of water, including natural seawater.

    Ever since I started my SPS tank back in Aug '08, natural seawater was my one and only source of saltwater. It was cheap, convenient, and most of all, Pet Club down the street carried it. I was told that the water came from Half Moon Bay, which I always thought had great, suitable quality since the beaches looked a whole lot prettier than the SF Ocean Beach. But, looks can be deceiving. It never occurred to me until I visited the Pumpkin Festival over there and noticed, "Hey, there are a lot of farms in this area, with potentially a lot of nutrient run-off." And that's when I decided to switch over to RO/DI water.

    I did a little shopping before hand to look for an in-house system. However, after reading how much waste water would be generated, I couldn't justify to myself the amount of water I would literally be throwing down the drain. Plus, it's not like I can use it to water my lawn since I live in South City, where we get enough water over here from the year round fog to water all my out-of-saltwater-plants. Anyways, I digress. Sooooo, luckily, Aquatic Central carries RO/DI. After around a month of RO/DI-saltwater changes, I noticed a little bit of purple popping up in my rainbow monti and purple plasma. At first, I thought it might have been a fluke, but after further water changes with the RO/DI water, all the coral colors looked exactly how they do in most of your threads.

    So, here I stand now, a firm believer in RO/DI water. As obvious as it is now to not do a water change without it, it was my previous oversight that prevented me from fully appreciating my sps corals. Hope this helps someone since it took me over a year to figure this out.

    Happy Reefing!
  14. phishphood

    phishphood Guest

    Hey Otaku, you might want to look into running DI only. No waste water, but it depends on your beginning TDS for how long your filters will last. So far, so good for me after a few months. But my beginning TDS is around 35ish.
  15. Hmm, sounds interesting. What would I be losing by not running the RO portion?
  16. phishphood

    phishphood Guest

    Running off of memory...doesn't RO usually get water down to ~3-5 TDS? Now I'm not sure how much of that comes from the RO filter vs the carbon prefilter blocks etc, but point is you're still running 35 TDS (or whatever your household measures as) through the DI resin by itself. Means that it takes less time for your resin to run out. If you have more ?'s...Thales should be able to answer them too.
  17. cool, thanks for the info.

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