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Llj's 8G... Can't have just one


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#26
.Newman.

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yes, i just use the measuring cup ;)
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#27
lljdma06

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yes, i just use the measuring cup ;)


I know, I've really gotta learn to be less anal. ;) Well, now for the moment of truth.

Time to add the LR...

With a pH of 8.3? LOL... and an sg of 1.026, I figured I was ready to add my LR. I opted to go to my favorite LFS. They did not disappoint. Cured LR sitting in the holding tank just waiting for me. Cost less than to buy uncured from a website and pay for shipping. Man, I love Miami. Tbh, will just do the 36g that way too. Then, I can pick my LR and pick exactly what I want for scaping.

Positioning was not a particular challenge. I opted to place the rock first and then surround and anchor it with sand. I didn't want to take the chance of a burrowing animal disturbing rock placed over sand and injuring itself where I couldn't reach it.

This is what I ended up with.

Posted Image

There is room to add coral with its rock as I go along, and I've got room on the substrate to lay some coral down and acclimate them if my lighting is too bright. There are exposed parts and a pretty flat plane for perching corals. The tall peak will be perfect to mount a montipora should I go that route. I can create bright spots and shady spots. Some nice coraline growth in these rocks too.

Then I had to add the sand. This was not so easy and as slow as I went, the tank was just getting very cloudy, no matter what I did. :lol: I'll have to figure out a way to make this process better for the 36g, and I've got some ideas, but I had already improved by the time I did the 2.5g and that tank is much clearer. Remember, I may have done a load of reading, but this is the first time that I've put any of this to practice. I worked a long day today at church and spent way too much time with relatives, so by the time I got home, I was very tired and just wanted the process done. I ran out of steam. It'll clear up soon (I hope). It's already better from when I took this picture.

Posted Image

Now, I wait and test my water. Run the powerheads when the water clears a bit more (not certain it's condusive to run the powerheads when the sand's still settling) and begin work on modifying the Aquaclear 50 for the refugium. I'm excited, I didn't have high hopes for this process, but I was very happy with the LR from the lfs. Thanks for looking. The rock was cured and smelled rather nice, like ocean. The Live sand out of the bag didn't smell bad either. No ammonia smell.

Thanks for looking.

llj

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#28
castiel

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Nice pet rock! Has a good hollow beneath for goby/shrimp caves =0)

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#29
lljdma06

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Nice pet rock! Has a good hollow beneath for goby/shrimp caves =0)


What's also super cool is that there's a hole in the top rock that fishies can swim through too. There are other hollows through out as well. I'm excited about these rocks.

Thanks for commenting. I'm so tired, though, it's been a long day.

llj

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#30
yoshii

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Is that one rock? I really love it! It looks great :)

Wow your tank is pretty clear, at least compared to what my old 20g looked like when I added oolite

55gal: Reef - 10g: Leaffish Macro-Algae Tank - 3g: Pico Reef - 1.6g: Mini Macro Tank

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#31
lljdma06

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Is that one rock? I really love it! It looks great :)


Nope, three pieces interlocked. But I have me some skills. Many years hooking wood together. No dead spots, though, I checked already.

Wow your tank is pretty clear, at least compared to what my old 20g looked like when I added oolite


Wow, Yoshii, I feel much better about my sand adding skills now. :lol: I should be able to run the powerheads now, right, or should I wait until they get a bit more clear?

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#32
yoshii

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Nope, three pieces interlocked. But I have me some skills. Many years hooking wood together. No dead spots, though, I checked already.



Wow, Yoshii, I feel much better about my sand adding skills now. :lol: I should be able to run the powerheads now, right, or should I wait until they get a bit more clear?

nice!

Lol yeah, and I seriously washed it 10-15 times <_<
I think you should just turn on the powerheads now, cause if you wait until it's all clear then turn them on, they are probably going to stir up some sand and make it a bit cloudy again

55gal: Reef - 10g: Leaffish Macro-Algae Tank - 3g: Pico Reef - 1.6g: Mini Macro Tank

I swear yoshii you turn every thread into a chat box lol!!!

Lack of research is the biggest down fall of people in this hobby.

 


#33
lljdma06

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nice!

Lol yeah, and I seriously washed it 10-15 times <_<
I think you should just turn on the powerheads now, cause if you wait until it's all clear then turn them on, they are probably going to stir up some sand and make it a bit cloudy again


I didn't wash it that much... :huh:

Okeydokey. I'm so excited, I can already see the montipora, though I know I can't have it for a while yet. A little fishy swimming through the hole. :D Can't wait to go back to the Lfs and get the LR for the 36g. A lot more rock will be ready for me later in the week. I really enjoyed being able to pick and choose what I wanted. They are great.

Edited by lljdma06, 14 August 2011 - 05:29 PM.

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#34
yoshii

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I didn't wash it that much... :huh:

Okeydokey. I'm so excited, I can already see the montipora, though I know I can't have it for a while yet. A little fishy swimming through the hole. :D Can't wait to go back to the Lfs and get the LR for the 36g. A lot more rock will be ready for me later in the week. I really enjoyed being able to pick and choose what I wanted. They are great.

Hmm well I added 30lbs (dry weight) and you added..much less than that so that's probably why :P

Do you have a fish "wishlist"?
I've heard you guys get some pretty cool rock in FL, I expect the 36 to have a cool scape! :)

55gal: Reef - 10g: Leaffish Macro-Algae Tank - 3g: Pico Reef - 1.6g: Mini Macro Tank

I swear yoshii you turn every thread into a chat box lol!!!

Lack of research is the biggest down fall of people in this hobby.

 


#35
lljdma06

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Hmm well I added 30lbs (dry weight) and you added..much less than that so that's probably why :P

Do you have a fish "wishlist"?
I've heard you guys get some pretty cool rock in FL, I expect the 36 to have a cool scape! :)


That is true. Gee, make me feel bad about myself again, Yoshii. :lol: I'll eat my humble pie. I suck at this, I admit it. All book learning, no practical application.

For the 8g, right now, no idea. Was going to go for a hi-finned banded goby with it's pistol shrimp, but I'd also love something that swims in the water column. I also loved that chubby yellow goby (name escapes me) and el Fab had a chubby green goby that I loved. Monocrhome5 thinks I should make people's eyes bleed and add the damsel that el Fab had, especially since I'll be keeping a lot of SPS. That could be cool, but I'd love something else too. I've got to think about it. I'll make a list. My 36g had an anal stock list, I don't see any reason why I can't look through my books and come up with a proposed stock list for my two picos as well.

:D

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#36
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That is true. Gee, make me feel bad about myself again, Yoshii. :lol: I'll eat my humble pie. I suck at this, I admit it. All book learning, no practical application.

For the 8g, right now, no idea. Was going to go for a hi-finned banded goby with it's pistol shrimp, but I'd also love something that swims in the water column. I also loved that chubby yellow goby (name escapes me) and el Fab had a chubby green goby that I loved. Monocrhome5 thinks I should make people's eyes bleed and add the damsel that el Fab had, especially since I'll be keeping a lot of SPS. That could be cool, but I'd love something else too. I've got to think about it. I'll make a list. My 36g had an anal stock list, I don't see any reason why I can't look through my books and come up with a proposed stock list for my two picos as well.

:D

Ahh noo you did a good job

Yellow Clown Goby and Green Clown Goby? I had a YCG in my 55, super cute! Great personality too, but he killed my montis and some LPS too :tears:
I think a yellowtail would look nice, but you wouldn't be able to have any other fish in there (mine also killed shrimp)

55gal: Reef - 10g: Leaffish Macro-Algae Tank - 3g: Pico Reef - 1.6g: Mini Macro Tank

I swear yoshii you turn every thread into a chat box lol!!!

Lack of research is the biggest down fall of people in this hobby.

 


#37
Builder Anthony

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I really like yellow tail damsels they are so fast and awalys swimming around.
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#38
lljdma06

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Yes, I definitely have to think about my stock list some more. I'll try to come up with a stock list tonight if I can. At least get one tank done.

It cleared up a lot last night. Was very surprised actually. Snapped a couple of pictures this morning.

fts
Posted Image

left side
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right side
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detail of the center with the hole. Gotta get a fish to swim through the hole.

Posted Image

Now for the nitty-gritty...

Day 1 stats

Will opt to test at roughly the same time everyday. I like continuity and it's easy to make this routine, especially since I'll have to be up early for work starting next week.

pH - 7.8 (A bit low :/ )
sg - 1.026 (good)
Amm - 0ppm

I'm wondering if the lower pH isn't from me mucking around in there and wreaking havoc yesterday. pH was at 8.3 before, so we'll see. Maybe the sand and rocks need time to sort things out. This is why we do things slow. :) Thanks for looking, comments and suggestions always appreciated.

llj

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#39
lljdma06

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I got another package today (thanks Monochrome5)

This is an LED fixture for my Aquaclear refugium build.

Posted Image

Not much light in the 8g, but I think it'll serve the confined space of the refugium very well.

Posted Image

Thanks for looking.

llj

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#40
Monochrome5

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I'm wondering if the lower pH isn't from me mucking around in there and wreaking havoc yesterday. pH was at 8.3 before, so we'll see. Maybe the sand and rocks need time to sort things out. This is why we do things slow. :) Thanks for looking, comments and suggestions always appreciated.


It's because of the light. pH can swing with light cycles. You're also cycling, so as things on the rock develop you'll notice swings. Don't fret too much.

I think you need more rock. 1.5-2 pounds per gallon. I have over 50 in my 29 and I still think I need more. Yours is a nice piece though...

Reef tanks are like race cars - they're flashy, expensive, and the faster you go the harder you crash.

 

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#41
Builder Anthony

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Ya maybe add just a little bit more sand.A cup or two.Check your ph at the end of the light cycle.It should be higher then.But your right things need to stabalize before you will really know whats going on in the tank.I just added rock till the ph hit the right spot and then somemore from corals bought.Eventually youll find some nice corals on rock that youll want to dunp in there so that should raise it up.
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#42
.Newman.

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or you can just do an invert only pico like me :P

but damsel would be a good choice for this. maybe two clown gobies, or one green band goby.
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#43
lljdma06

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@Monochrome5, am I still able to add rock since it's so early in the cycle? Heck it's not even in a cycle yet, as you'll see from day 2 stats. :lol:

Ya maybe add just a little bit more sand.A cup or two.Check your ph at the end of the light cycle.It should be higher then.But your right things need to stabalize before you will really know whats going on in the tank.I just added rock till the ph hit the right spot and then somemore from corals bought.Eventually youll find some nice corals on rock that youll want to dunp in there so that should raise it up.


I'll have to shift my light cycle then. Right now it ends a bit late because I like to fall asleep watching the tanks. But I'll shift it so I can do the test tonight and see the difference. The space around the tank is just for that, in case I find extra corals with rocks. The thing is that I also need some space down in the substrate to acclimate the corals to the lighting. 70W MH is no joke, if I don't acclimate, I can risk bleaching my little children if I'm not careful. I'll see what I can find today with regard to LR. If I find a really cool piece, I'll add it. Again, you'll see why...


or you can just do an invert only pico like me :P

but damsel would be a good choice for this. maybe two clown gobies, or one green band goby.


I like inverts and fishies. I'm still working on a stocking list.

Day 2 stats...

pH - 7.8
amm - 0ppm
sg - holding at 1.026

fts

Posted Image

I saw some other things in this tank early this morning, but I'll wait until the lights turn on to get pictures.

llj

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#44
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Add your rock now. That's the point of the cycle. If you add big chunks of rock later it can trigger mini cycles, especially in a tank this small. You don't want that.

Stop testing the water. You're wasting you test kits. Things are going to go crazy. It's supposed to. You don't want to touch the tank during the cycle. Add everything now - all your rock, sand, AC50, etc. Then wait two weeks and test from there. Don't do any water changes during the cycle. This isn't a FW tank. Water changes will only slow the cycle/start it over.

Reef tanks are like race cars - they're flashy, expensive, and the faster you go the harder you crash.

 

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#45
lljdma06

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I know not to touch the water, I haven't touched my water or done any water changes. Why would you think I'd touch the water?? I have done my reading & know this isn't FW. I do, however, need to do top-offs of RO for evaporation so I think I should still test sg regularly.

Thanks :) If this saves me tests, I appreciate it. I'm used to NOT doing tests. I'll add more rock today if I can.

Llj

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#46
Monochrome5

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I know not to touch the water, I haven't touched my water or done any water changes. Why would you think I'd touch the water?? I have done my reading & know this isn't FW. I do, however, need to do top-offs of RO for evaporation so I think I should still test sg regularly.

Thanks :) If this saves me tests, I appreciate it. I'm used to NOT doing tests. I'll add more rock today if I can.

Llj


Because it sounds like you're stressing dear :) Just trying to save you stress.

Top offs are good. Open top tanks are fun like that. Just the other day I turned my AC off and my pest tank spiked to 1.032sg in less than 8 hours all because of evap. Oops. Luckily aiptasia and the like don't care.

Reef tanks are like race cars - they're flashy, expensive, and the faster you go the harder you crash.

 

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#47
lljdma06

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Because it sounds like you're stressing dear :) Just trying to save you stress.

Top offs are good. Open top tanks are fun like that. Just the other day I turned my AC off and my pest tank spiked to 1.032sg in less than 8 hours all because of evap. Oops. Luckily aiptasia and the like don't care.


Hahahaha! If I'm stressing, it's not because of the hobby. This relaxes me, you have no idea...

1. A grad student is moving into my house
2. I'm in 5 recital & performances this year
3. I'm directing an ensemble & I have to pick music for it
4. I'm kind of sick
5. I teach at two universities.

Hobby's the last thing that'll cause me stress. :lol: I got a bunch more LR. Scape isn't as pretty IMO, but I'll get used to it. Rock's definitely from the Caribbean. Saw the order invoice from the LFS. Will be making my refugium tonight. Will take pix when lights go on.

Llj

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#48
lljdma06

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Step one of refugium complete and the aquarium sealant is drying. I may to a fuge for the 2.5g, but use a smaller aquaclear. I'll have to see.

Added more LR

Before...

Posted Image

After...

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image

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I also received my MH

Posted Image

With the Fall term starting up again, I'll be super busy, so I'm glad I'm in the Leave it alone & enjoy the pet rock phase. I'll be working to get the MH up by next weekend if I can. By the time I'm able to invest in the CUC, the semester would've settled some.

It looks so bulky. There's about 3x the LR there was before. I purchased a big ol' piece and hacked it to bits. :lol: If anything survives my destruction of their little world, I'll be impressed.

llj

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#49
.Newman.

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slow is the way to go!
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#50
lljdma06

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slow is the way to go!


Yep, can't agree with you more... I broke my refugium. :angry: Was about to do a wet test and was trying to insert the modified uptake tube into the slot. Well, the slot snapped and the fuge is ruined. :( My fault, I shouldn't have forced it and I really should have followed my gut and not cut the intake tube. My 8g was deep enough that it could've handled the standard length, especially since I've used that filter in that tank before. Very dumb me. Well... back to the drawing board, but I may look at refugiums online...

Here's a draft of my livestock list for the 8g. This isn't a final list by any means.

CUC

Banded trochus snail - 1
Nassarius - 1
Cyraea spp (money cowrie) - It's an interesting species, just 1
Mithrax crab - 1, but only if it behaves, otherwise it dwells in quaranteen
Calcinus elegans (Electric blue hermit) - 1 or Calcinis sp. (Electric orange hermit) - 1

I may cut a crab or two from the list and maybe add instead porcelain crabs. They come in many colors and can be kept in groups.

Lysimate amboinensis (skunk cleaner) - a pair

Fish, I have no clue. I like a goby/pistol shrimp pair. People have recommended a damselfish. I'm undecided. I think I can have like 2 fish without a problem.

Corals - like the 2.5g, I'm starting off easier. This is by no means a list where everything would be added at once, but gradually over time. Most of the corals are peaceful with a few exceptions, though none of them are exceptionally agressive. The tank's too small to have to worry about evil corals. Some of them require mature, very well run systems. I'll start with the easier ones in the group and them gradually switch them out for more difficult species.

Rhodactis inchoata (tonga blue) - these things are really beatiful, agressive, though.
Ricordea yuma - The 36g will feature Ricordea florida, so I figure why not put the other species here, and it's beautiful
Zoanthids - This is probably the species, along with the shrooms above, that I'll start off with, an easy coral that likes bright light. Then I swap it off for more difficult species.
Briareum sp (green star polyps) - it looks cute and is not so hard
Sarcophyton sp (umbrella leather coral) - not sure on this.
Caulastrea furcata (Candy cane) - I like the green one best
Montipora capicornis (Montipora cap) - to add later.
Scolymia vitiensis (Scoly coral) - This is expensive, but not to bad, semi-agressive
Stylophora pistillata (cat's paw coral) - for a more mature tank
Acropora - another coral for a mature system
Seriatopora histrix (pink bird's nest coral) - right for the tip top and to be added when the system is mature.

I personally think that some of these are going to get too big, and I'd like to narrow the above down somewhat. Like I said, I'm starting with the easier ones first. Any comments or suggestions are welcome, especially with regard to fish. I like a goby/shrimp pair, or a breeding goby pair with their shrimp. Then like something small for the water column.

llj

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