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Discussion in 'Tank Journals' started by kinetic, Sep 8, 2017.
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You could probably paint the cord to the light white to help it blend in with the wall better. Are you going to keep it that high? The light dispersion will be great but there will be a lot that spills into the room.
Hmm, will paint stay on a flexible chord? OK, I'll try getting that braided thing, if it still sucks I'll just paint it. I spray painted my betta tank's chord and it looks pretty good.
Oh, the light is definitely too high I think. I had it at that height to keep it out of the way, but I think once I get corals in, I'll move it down. Maybe 11" off the top of the water? I guess I'll just lower it until the light spill is contained and/or it gets too close to the water. I think the spread on the 52 over my tank is a bit much.
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Plasti Dip paint should be flexible
Messing with salinity problems the last couple days, but I think I've finally dialed it in.
Ammonia somehow went from 1.2ppm to 2.0ppm overnight, which is the opposite of what I want. I didn't dose any ammonium chloride, so not sure what happened. There aren't any live things in the tank to die off, except the bacteria. Maybe my salinity swings killed off bacteria? Nitrites still undetectable.
I'm on cycle day 6 since the display tank was setup, but the rocks are now on week 4 of cycling. There's a chance that both bottles of Dr. Tim's One and Only I got were dead bottles? I ordered one more bottle + a bottle of IO BIO SPIRA. I'll just dump those in this week and then just wait it out.
I removed my carbon (which might be a problem for the cycle) and turned down my skimmer pump to the lowest setting (it wasn't producing enough bubbles anyway at this stage of things). So should be ready for a proper cycle once I get all that bacteria in.
I ordered an AquaMaxx XL reactor and a string of red/blue grow lights (waterproof) to use as an algae reactor. I don't have space in the sump, and not blasting light in there would keep it clean-ish. I've had a lot of concern over the heat, so I'm thinking of getting an aluminum tube that would fit around the reactor, with the LED's mounted to it. I'm hoping growing this much chaeto will help with future phosphates. Maybe I'm preparing for something I don't know will be a problem yet, but it's fun to tinker while everything is cycling.
A couple questions:
Do you think a H. Magnifica anemone will outgrow this tank? I'm ok not having any other coral, but just don't want it to be too cramped even by itself.
Is it normal for my skimmer to barely produce any bubbles to rise to the cup during the cycle? It was overflowing at first, but after I messed with the sump a bit the bubbles totally went away. Skimmer went through a 3 hour vinegar bath before hand, and has been running for the 6 days. Now the water level is halfway up, fizzy bubbles but nothing building on top of each other even at full blast with the DC pump.
Since tank has no living things in it (except hopefully bacteria), should I get a bunch of pods, like from AlgaeBarn? I'm thinking of getting this after the tank is cycled: https://www.algaebarn.com/product/combo-5280-pods-oceanmagik-phyto/
I'll probably also pickup some trochus snails. I'm still hoping that people on my DBTC from back in the day have some of my same strain I gave out. But doesn't look like it so far. Any other suggestions for snails? I'm thinking trochus, cerith, nassarius. If algae is really bad, I'll probably get some turbos, but I'll hold off until later. I'm probably staying away from hermits/crabs.
So my ammonia levels never go down, and my nitrites never go above 0 or barely detectable.
So last night I added a 4oz. bottle of IO Bio Spira. Before adding it, my ammonia was probably just around 2.0 ppm (or a bit higher) using Red Sea and Salifert tests, and nitrites were undetectable using salifert.
Today, less than 24 hours later, ammonia is down to 0.3 ppm and nitrites up to 0.5ppm (maybe more, hard to tell with this Salifert test)! Wow.
For sure the bio-spira worked. I just got another bottle of Dr. Tim's one and only as well (my third 4 oz bottle), and dumped that in today after testing as well. Why? I don't know, just because I wanted to make sure I had some bacteria that was alive.
Either my past 2 bottles of Dr. Tim's One and Only were very dead, or Bio spira is just a lot faster with processing ammonia. Either way, it's still cycling and we'll see how it all goes.
My latest bottle of Dr. Tim's One and Only had a bunch of junk at the bottom of it. I shook the bottle a bit before adding the whole thing, but this time there was quite a bit of brown debris at the bottom that I haven't seen with past bottles. BIO SPIRA went in brown, but didn't have big bits of gunk.
At 4 weeks, you are probably getting a natural cycle along with some help from Bio Spora.
Quite possibly an old bottle of Dr. Tims, or perhaps exposed to a lot of heat. Who knows.
brings back memories of my first reef tank, didn't use dead rock though, used "live" rock from Tonga transshipped, sitting on a LA run way for unknown hours, then it redirected to Las Vegas and sat there for an untold number of hours, and when it finally came into San Francisco at 5am it was during one of those heat waves like we just had (it was so hot I could smell the garbage dump when I passed it on 101). Tossed all that crap into my tank (hey I was new, and didn't know any better) and boy the ammonia test kit read a color that was darker than the highest value on the test card... whew boy!
Probably all of those things combined!
Dosed another 20 drops of ammonium chloride (which is lot less dosage than recommended, but I'm pretty sure my bottle of ammonium chloride is way stronger than the recipe is catered for).
I'll measure tonight and see if it drops pretty quickly.
Haha that's awesome! I've only done it with live rock / live sand from a local established tank, and then dead/dry rock ever since. Never had too many horror stories.
I can tell you that smell wasn't awesome. Luckily this was pre-wife years, so I was the only one to deal with it, but I had all the windows in my living room open for a week, and only left my bedroom to go to the kitchen to get food. Totally didn't get the allure of "live" rock after that
The junk on the bottom of the Dr. Tim's is the bacteria. Shaking it to get that stuff up into the water before dumping it in is critical. If you didn't (if it looked clear) the first time that might be why it didn't work well.
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That makes sense, though each time I did dump the entire contents of the bottles in. This time it was definitely chunkier at the bottom, but all went in, so it should be good now. If not that, then the BIO SPIRA is definitely working fast.
My ammonia is now almost undetectable, and nitrites are pretty high, around 3ppm. I dosed a tiny bit more ammonium chloride today, but I think I'll now stop dosing until both ammonia and nitrites drop do below 0.2ppm. Once that happens I'll try dosing more ammonium chloride and see if the levels go down to 0. I'll keep waiting for 0.2ppm drops to dose until both are undetectable.
My Skimz QuietPro 4.0 DC pump and 2.0 DC pumps are pretty loud. At 40% my return pump registers 55dB. I asked BRS if I could return them and they said yes. I'm replacing them with Reef Octopus VarioS S-4 and S-2 pumps. They're a bit more powerful, but they can be controlled down to fit the bill. I'll be running the S-4 at around 550gph, and the S-2 around 250gph. I was originally going to go for the Vectra S1 as my return, but I keep seeing broken down M1 pump threads pop up. Even though replacements and what not are sent out quickly, I have yet to see any problems with VarioS pumps. Skimz users say their pumps are really quiet. VarioS owners say it's dead silent, and there's no noise at all. So I'm hoping for the best.
I don't really need to control these with Apex, other than on/off. I'll have the return on the Apex Jr.'s eb4 outlet, but the skimmer/reactor VarioS S-2 pump will just be on a powerstrip. I'm saving the last outlet I have for my algae reactor light (turning it off if things get too hot).
I'm considering getting an eb4 or even an eb8 to control:
3. Return pump
4. Reactor/Chiller pump
5. Algae reactor lights
6. Skimmer pump
7. Gyre pump
- I'll probably also eventually get an auto feeder. Then my Apex would turn off the return and skimmer pumps, feed, and then turn on the return and skimmer pumps again. Good for when I'm not in town (which will be often)
- I want to control the algae reactor lights to be opposite of my AI Hydra, so a simple time based on/off would work here. I will also have a heat failsafe, so if the heat gets too much (like beyond chiller ability) I will shut off the reactor lights
- If leaks are detected, I'll probably have everything except the gyre pump stopped and an alarm sent. If anything, I have a nest cam that I can look through or call someone to go over and check. The gyre pump should keep things alive for a bit.
An extra FMM module from my ATK for a total of:
2. ATK sensor low
3. ATK sensor high
4. LD-2 leak probe (in cabinet)
5. LD-2 leak probe (behind cabinet on floor)
6. Solenoid to refill 5 gallon ATO reservoir
7. OS-1 optical sensor for ATO reservoir low
I've been hearing Varios pumps turning off by themselves then turning back on a few secs later. Happens intermittently and no one seems to know why.
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There are a number of ecotech vectra users in BAR and I haven't heard of any one having issues with them. I have been using an M1 for over a year now without any issues.
I drive it around 60-70% as it powers a dual GFO/Carbon reactor, single biopellet reactor and an algae reactor in addition to the normal return pump duties.
Yah actually I did hear about that too. I think it may have had to do with a bad power supply.
Yeah for sure a lot of positives too on Vectra. I’m a fan of the blue and white color
Well, we’ll see how the VarioS do. Hopefully solid pumps that’ll last!
Thanks for the input on your Vectra!
Cycle is getting closer. Ammonia down to 0ppm. Nitrite down to 2ppm. Once nitrite dips to 0.2ppm I'll dose to 2ppm ammonia again. Repeating until I can get to 0's within 12 hours.
The VarioS pumps get in tomorrow to replace to Skimz. Let's hope the decibels drop like crazy. My Simplicity skimmer is pretty loud too... that might have to be replaced next.
By Thursday I'll have everything I need to setup the Algae Reactor (other than the algae), so I'll have that running by Friday with just an empty reactor. I think that'll be it. I'll hold off on all the Apex stuff until later this year.