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ddk997

12gal Nanocube DX(nanotuners) Journal

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ddk997

System:

2008 Nano Cube 3.24 from Nanotuners - the modded systems run cooler and brighter than stock.(arriving tomorrow!!!!! :D:D )

- 2(24w) 50/50 10000K Day/Actinic Blue

- 1(24w) Actinic Blue

- NVM Fix & Power Adaptor

 

Materials:

- Magfloat

- Seachem Prime

- 50w Visi-Therm Stealth Heater

- Instant Ocean Sea Salt

- 20lbs Carib Sea AragAlive Reef Sand(medium)

- Instant Ocean Hydrometer

- Chemi-pure Elite(full size) for after the cycle would be a waste for before.

-8lbs Kaleni and 8lbs Timora of live nano rock (16 lbs of live rock)

- RO/DI Water Filter

 

2/2/2010 updates/future-

- Two False Clowns

- Reef Scavengers CUC

Nano Package

10 Nass S

8 Nerite S

8 Blue/White Hermit

3 Scarlet Reef

1 Porcelin Crab

1 Emerald Crab

- A possible goby, maybe firefish again.

- Cleaner Shrimp

Edited by ddk997

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CollegeNano

Looks like you are off to a good start. Like you , I don't have a RO/DI unit to filter my water. I would suggest buying saltwater premixed from your LFS and grabbing a few gallons of distilled (64cents) from walmart in place of the tap water filter. I have not heard of the azoo test kit, is it strips? If so you should probably switch to a liquid test like the API ones for more accurate results.

 

Good call on the PA rocks (or so I think). I orderd from drs. F&S because it was so much cheaper for me, but the rock never showed any visible life other than what I added. All of the threads with rock from PA seem to be teaming with life.

 

I also have the same hydrometer. I took mine into the LFS and had them compare it to their refractometer. I would do this just to see how accurately your hydrometer is reading the salt levels. It gave me a little more piece of mind.

 

Can't wait to see your setup, hope it arrives in one piece!

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ddk997
Looks like you are off to a good start. Like you , I don't have a RO/DI unit to filter my water. I would suggest buying saltwater premixed from your LFS and grabbing a few gallons of distilled (64cents) from walmart in place of the tap water filter. I have not heard of the azoo test kit, is it strips? If so you should probably switch to a liquid test like the API ones for more accurate results.

 

Good call on the PA rocks (or so I think). I orderd from drs. F&S because it was so much cheaper for me, but the rock never showed any visible life other than what I added. All of the threads with rock from PA seem to be teaming with life.

 

I also have the same hydrometer. I took mine into the LFS and had them compare it to their refractometer. I would do this just to see how accurately your hydrometer is reading the salt levels. It gave me a little more piece of mind.

 

Can't wait to see your setup, hope it arrives in one piece!

 

Hey collegenano, The azoo test kit is all liquid and you just match it up with the color coded sheets they provide. I also hope it arrives in one piece, I've gone through some topic on this forum where people have had tanks crack from shipping... keeping my fingers crossed! :o

Edited by ddk997

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ddk997

YAY! :D BOTH of my packages arrived today, however my package that was suppose to be here tomorrow(drf&s) had a problem.

 

Bad News: The tap water filter from Dr Foster and Smith was broken when I opened it up. I was looking for the piece that broke off, however it was no where to be found. The box itself wasnt even taped up, Nice job Dr foster and Smith, I WILL NEVER EVER make another purchase from them. I highly suggest you leave them alone.

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(I went on with it and try to fix it myself by wrapping about 6 inches of duck tape around the crack, it pretty much worked and I left the tube in the sink, I thought it would be much better off with atleast something, than nothing.)

 

Good News: Tank arrived unharmed!! I highly reccomend nanotuners all the way!! The tank came packaged very well with alot of Fragile on each side of the box.

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:D

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What everyone should have on their box while shipping glass!!

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TEST RUN(IF WORKS,LEAVING AS IS)

Before I started anything, as I mentioned earlyier, I had fixed the tap water filter hole with the use of good ol' duck tape!! After 2 hours of making 20 gals!! :angry: I then finished making the water with 10 drops of Seachem Prime per 5 gallons of water. The Instant Ocean said it was 1.5lbs of salt to 5 gal of water would make give it a salinity of 1.022. I proceeded to mix 2 (5 gal) with 1.5 lbs each threw each in the tank and used the hydrometer.

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(about 1.023)

 

I removed the Rings and Bio-balls out of the middle chamber and left the carbon. I removed 1 sponge and left 2, and I am thinking when the live rock comes to remove 1 more sponge(leaving 1 in the 1st chamber) and switch off every week.

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LETS GET IT STARTED!!

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I ordered my live rock today before 2pm EDT so I can recieve it Thursday. I purchased 8lbs of Kaileni and 8lbs of Timora Live nano rock. I will be back with photos of course.

 

??FEW Questions??

- During the live rock process and after the cycle, how long are you allowed to keep your blue antatic lights on?

- When I started to fill my tank, I had forgot that I was suppose to remove the carbon and rinse it under water for 30 seconds. Now my main tank has alittle black stuff, looks to be from the carbon sitting on the bottom of my tank, I am wondering is that okay to be there and just covered up with sand...or should I take all the water out and clean it?:(

- My tank has been running for one hour now and the temp is at 72degrees F. The 50w heater is set at 86, is it ok if I turned the heater all the way to 89(max)?

- On the cube it says "Cooling fan, must be in use at all times"... Is it ok to turn off the fan during the LED lights are on and the other lights are off?

THANKS EVERYONE!!

Edited by ddk997

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Qwank

that heater will take some time to heat up the water. set it for about 78 and check it in the morning. you will have to play around with it before you find the perfect spot. i keep mine at 75 and my tank stays at 80 constanlty even with the lights on. but its also heavily modded with fans to cool the heat frm the 70w MH

 

i wouldnt worry about the carbon. by the time yourtank is cycled a few weeks from now that dust will be part of your sand and long gone. my actinics go on one hour before the main light and goes off one hour after.

you only need the fans on when the lights are on. that includes actinics only and all 3 lights. but when the moon lights are on they are not needed. dont the fans come on automatically with the lights anywas on your cube?

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ddk997
that heater will take some time to heat up the water. set it for about 78 and check it in the morning. you will have to play around with it before you find the perfect spot. i keep mine at 75 and my tank stays at 80 constanlty even with the lights on. but its also heavily modded with fans to cool the heat frm the 70w MH

 

i wouldnt worry about the carbon. by the time yourtank is cycled a few weeks from now that dust will be part of your sand and long gone. my actinics go on one hour before the main light and goes off one hour after.

you only need the fans on when the lights are on. that includes actinics only and all 3 lights. but when the moon lights are on they are not needed. dont the fans come on automatically with the lights anywas on your cube?

 

Hello Qwank, Thanks for your help!! I have noticed that the instructioanl manual also said that when I turn on the lights the fan should come on automatically, however I have to switch the 2 buttons on the ballast for the lights to come on and plug this cord on the back to have the fan go on. Im not sure if theres another way, but please let me know if there is. I also wondering how did you fit the actintics and main light all on a timer? I would need 4 different timers!! :lol:

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Qwank

well maybe your fan is set up separate because of the nano tuners mod. i've never seen one in person so i dont know.

 

i have 2 timers controling my 3 fans, actinics and MH light. heres how i do it.if i can explain it. the first timer plugs directly into the wall out let and has a powerstip plugged into it. on that powerstrip i have the 2 plugs for my fans, the actinics and a second timer. the second timer has my MH plugged into it. so lets say the first timer turns on at 1PM. thats turns on the fans and actinics. at 2PM theMH turns on.at 8PM the MH turns of and at 9PM the whole strip turns off.

 

i used to have the MH plugged directly into the wall but i had the timer fail on me so it stayed on while the fans were off for almost 6 hours. i came home to a 93 degree tank! nothng died either. but the way I have it now, even if the timer for the MH fails it will never stay on past the fans. did i explain that good enough?

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ddk997
well maybe your fan is set up separate because of the nano tuners mod. i've never seen one in person so i dont know.

 

i have 2 timers controling my 3 fans, actinics and MH light. heres how i do it.if i can explain it. the first timer plugs directly into the wall out let and has a powerstip plugged into it. on that powerstrip i have the 2 plugs for my fans, the actinics and a second timer. the second timer has my MH plugged into it. so lets say the first timer turns on at 1PM. thats turns on the fans and actinics. at 2PM theMH turns on.at 8PM the MH turns of and at 9PM the whole strip turns off.

 

i used to have the MH plugged directly into the wall but i had the timer fail on me so it stayed on while the fans were off for almost 6 hours. i came home to a 93 degree tank! nothng died either. but the way I have it now, even if the timer for the MH fails it will never stay on past the fans. did i explain that good enough?

 

Thanks again!! That was explained very well, although when the 1st timer tells the powerstrip to shutoff at 9pm, Is the 2nd timer still working on that same strip? I see you are located in Pelham, I am from around the area also and I am wondering where are some good LFS around this area for CUC,Corals,Fish,Etc.(all the good stuff)? Thanks again for your help!!

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SPerry

Get a refractometer, you will save yourself a lot of headaches. The nanotuners mod changes the fan operation. I just leave mine on all the time. Since they blow into the splash shield it doesnt really affect tank temps when the lights are off. I think you are going to find the 2 50/50 1 actinic too blue and not enough white light for your corals. You might think about changing the 50/50 to 10000Ks.

Plug a power strip into the timer and then the lights, fans ect into the strip.

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ddk997

Thanks Sperry for your help. I plan on getting a refractometer because I heard it cant get anymore accurate than that. About the lights, I did plan on getting the 10000K, however they seem to make the tank look more yellow than a nice looking glowing tank. You think I should switch out 1 50/50 and try to get one 10000k?

 

 

UPDATE

1) My LR order from Premium Aquatics have shipped yesterday, just as they advertised(orders placed before 2pm EDT, ships same day!!). I chose 2nd day air, which should arrive by UPS on Thursday.

2) Thanks Qwank for letting me know to turn down my heater(it was set at MAX. 89, water temp was only 72). Well I turned down the heater to 82 and let it run over night, now my water temp is at 79!! THANKS it probaly would of gone up to 90!! If it wasnt for your help Qwank!

3) PH: 8.0

TEMP: 79F

SALTINTY: 1.023

Am. Nitrates. Nitrite : 0 Obviously

Calcium: Not yet tested

Phosphate: Not yet tested

ALK(KH): Not yet tested

 

- Is it ok if I tried to aquascape the rock before putting it in the tank? ( having a design layout on the table before building it in the tank)

- I heard LR first than LS...better?

- Come back tomorrow to check out the ROCKS!!

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Qwank

yeah i forgot to remind you abouit the refractometer also. i had a floating hydromer when i first started and it was of by .006. so i thought my salinity was 1.024 and it was really 1.030!

 

I'll PM you a list of stores near you. luckily we have 4 really good stores close by.

 

you will be fine playing with the rocks on the table before hand. if anything dies off it wont matter since the tank will have to go through its initial cycle anyways. just dont keep them out too long and make sure they stay wet. i did some aquascaping at the store i got my rock from before i bought it.

 

i would try one 10000K bulb and see how you like it.

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ddk997

Should I test all my water test before I add live Rock?

 

Today:

PH: 8.0

TEMP: 79F

SALTINTY: 1.023

Am. Nitrates. Nitrite : 0

Calcium: Not yet tested

Phosphate: 0

ALK(KH): 16 d/kh????

 

 

Is this all normal for a tank with just saltwater? Thanks

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ddk997

Help please!! I am using Instant Ocean Sea salt... I just want to be sure everything is right before I add Liverocks

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disaster999

just dump the rocks in and wait for it to cycle..theres really no point to test your water everyday with NOTHING in it besides water and salt.

 

im surprised no one said anything about his tap water filter.

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ddk997
just dump the rocks in and wait for it to cycle..theres really no point to test your water everyday with NOTHING in it besides water and salt.

 

im surprised no one said anything about his tap water filter.

 

Thanks disaster999, I just wasnt sure because there is another thread that is a beginners guide and he tested his water before he added live rock.

 

The filter claims it removes many impuritys and was tested, used and approved by world famous discus breeder Jack Wattley.

 

I also found something very interesting about R/O water...

"Reverse osmosis filteration (RO) is the most misunderstood filtration process in the aquarium hobby. Ro systems are often sophisticated and require a lot of maintenance and expertise to produce water of the desired purity. RO systems require three separate components to be truly effective filtration devices: (1) a sediment cartridge, (2) an activated carbon cartridge and (3) the RO membrane. Sediments, such as sand, clay, oil and ferric iron, must be removed, or the membrane, flow restrictors, and check valves will become fouled. An activated carbon cartridge is required to remove chlorine, cloramine, and organic compounds. The so-called "budget" RO systems, designed to be inexpensive, do not have activated carbon filtration, thus sacrificing total contaminant removal. RO water is often incorrectly considered equal in purity to deionized water. Actual use of "aquarium hobby" grade reverse osmosis systems shows that RO water still contains a certain percentage of the original contaminants. Some RO sytems remove, for example only 60% of the nitrate contamination of the incoming tap water. Reverse osmosis, therefore, only reduces the level of tap water contamination."

 

Bottled spring water

"In attempt to obtain "better" water, aquarists have tried using bottled "spring water." Even spring water can have high levels of dissolved minerals, and may possibly have been subjected to the same treatment processes as municipal waters. Carrying jugs of water from the supermarket is tedious, time-consuming, and rarely solves water quality problems"

 

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CollegeNano

If you buy water bottled don't buy spring water, buy "distilled water"

 

Are you loving the hobby so far?

Edited by CollegeNano

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Marasol

I either use water from my local fish shop or distilled. I add some things back via dosing but I dont do it alot. I used to use baby water but had trouble with phosphates. Lovely eh, thats what I give my daughter lol. Usually the LFS will have pretty good water. Dont be afraid to ask them to test it once for you, for phospate or TDS, if they wont do it dont bother spending your money there then.

 

Also, id like to share an idea I was given once a while back regarding "test" rock formations and building them.

 

When you are ready to make formations, put your rocks in a bucket of salt water that is near tank temp. Before you start draw a diagram of the base of your tank, It would have been better empty to do this but im sure you could just put a piece of paper board on top and trace the top on the underside of the paper. Then measure an inch or two inside of your trace line to make another outline that will be smaller thank your tank. Then you can stack rocks on that paper and try to get an idea of what formation you want while giving your room to work around the sides and front of your tank.

 

Depending on your handyness, One idea I read that will give you a very strong foundatin is when you get a setup you like to drill a few holes straight down through multiple rocks and slide a piece of acrylic rod down into it. This will keep those piece together very solidly in the tank. This is a tad more advanced than stacking. If you dont use some way to keep the rocks together, there are puttys that work well im told, make sure you stack them in ways that they wont move around on you when you are placing things and moving things around.

 

I read these ideas after setting up my tank, I just stacked rocks and I regret not reading more about it. Every time I try to move someting or place something in my tank Im moving rocks around and changing the formation. When you stacks the rocks initally they will feel very solid when you push down on them etc...but once your placing something inbetween rocks or attempting to move something they can be shifted very easily.

 

Sorry for the long and poorly written post but theres a tip I was trying to convey in there somewhere.

 

You cant learn it all first, its a learning proccess....just a few of my thoughts.

 

Good luck and I look forward to seeing your progress.

 

Jeremy

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ddk997

UPDATE:

Recieved my LR today and they are AMAZING.Before I start, I would love to say that Premium Aquatics is amazing and should always be your FIRST choice, possibly ONLY CHOICE!! Package came wrapped in wet brown bags and was well packaged. Once I opened each bag, I saw tons and tons of colors on each rock, I was amazed. I also think i got lucky and recieved a coral attached on the live rock, can anyone let me know?

The tank is still alittle not clear yet and settled, I plan on taking more pictures tonight or tomorrow with a high quality camera.

 

Well here are the pictures...SORRY 56K USERS.

 

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aquascape, just put the sand in so the water is still alittle unclear.

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alittle better after 30 minutes..

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top view

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You can see holes 1,2, and 3 from this angle.

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hole 1 exit, you can also see hole 3 exit-top right (left side)

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hole 2 exit (left side)

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looks like a face!! and it actually has a hole the fish may enter

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hole 2 exit and face exit!

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front tank, small, hole 4

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Middle tank cave

 

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what are these???

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back tank

 

 

:D

I have more photos but it wont let me add!!!! I have to wait until someone else replys first. Tell me what you guys think?

Edited by ddk997

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fishybadmike

The rock looks great! Once the tank clears out a bit you should post some more pictures.

 

I'm also setting up a 12gal JBJ (no light mods though)...I'm probably gonna be ordering about 16 lbs. of live rock from premium aquatics on Monday. My initial thought was to do 8 lbs. Kaelini Tonga and 8 lbs. Timora - it looks like that's exactly what you did. Does one type of rock look better? Do you think I should go with the same ratio? Did you tell the folks at PA anything specific about the rock you wanted when you ordered? Thanks :)

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ddk997
The rock looks great! Once the tank clears out a bit you should post some more pictures.

 

I'm also setting up a 12gal JBJ (no light mods though)...I'm probably gonna be ordering about 16 lbs. of live rock from premium aquatics on Monday. My initial thought was to do 8 lbs. Kaelini Tonga and 8 lbs. Timora - it looks like that's exactly what you did. Does one type of rock look better? Do you think I should go with the same ratio? Did you tell the folks at PA anything specific about the rock you wanted when you ordered? Thanks :)

 

Thanks fishybadmike, I ordered the nano live pack and I asked for half Kaelini and half Timora for the nano. I think both rock looks great, they are both loaded with colors right when you open them from the package, one by one. Don't heistate go with Premium always!!

 

Update:

I noticed I have tons of holes for when fish are added to the tank.(which wont be until much later).

 

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same pic as the main tank, however you may see 2 holes to the bottom right...

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This is where the hole exits, right side by the black thing...(what is that??)

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Right side small cave

whataretheses.jpg

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masterbuilder

VERY NICE aquascaping...I love it. The black thing, looks like it may be some sort of encrusting sponge. It will most likely go away in the next few weeks.

 

Well...now you get to sit back and wait for a few weeks. More pics when it all clears up...please.

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ddk997

Thank you very much masterbuilder!!

I am wondering what this is, on the top left of the picture, its white...(also bottom right)its starting to become alive once it hit the water, now i can see tiny holes in the middle of them...what is this?? Thanks

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UPDATE:

After only a few hours (maybe 1-2) in the water...I believe I see a hitchhiker on one of my rocks on the top. I will try to get a photo with a better camera tonight. Its stickin out of the rock hole, looks like some kind of worm, with a bunch of tiny hairs...

Edited by ddk997

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ddk997

UPDATE:

LIFE!!!!! I decided to turn on my actinic for the last hour of cycle and I saw this worm crawl out of the hole...It had a stripped pattern at the tip...I took a flashlight and shined at it...it quickly rolled back into the cave first retracting its body. Anyone know what this could be? its black and the tip is kinda clearish/yellow... :huh: I turned out the actinic and left on the LED...the worm came out even further... :eek:

I also saw an empty shell in the "face" rock :lol:

 

I have one quick question...during the cycle should I use the skimmer or should I remove the skimmer and use it when the tank is done with the cycle?

 

Earlyier today I remembered I had two sponges in the 1st chamber and I decided to tell myself to take one out, then while im pulling the sponge out...all the dirty stuff seems to enter the tank again and cloud it up again (while the water took 3 hours to turn clear!!). I am wondering what is the correct way to remove stuff from the back without having junk jump back into the tank? Thankks!! :D

 

 

OH BY THE WAY I CANT STOP LOOKING IN THE TANK...THIS HOBBY IS AMAZING

Edited by ddk997

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ddk997

Any Helpp?? for the last 2 questions

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