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Jamie's Canadian BioCube 29


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Here it is,


My Biocube 29.


This is my first Saltwater Tank. I have done a fair bit of reading now and understand some of the principals from earlier freshwater tanks. I also understand this is going to be a different ball of wax. I want to make sure this is done right, so I have ordered everything I think seems vital to a Nano Reef.


2x Hydor Koralia 1's

Tunze D.O.C. 9002 Skimmer (StevieT's Modified Skimmer Cup as well)

Maxi-Jet 900

API Marine Master Reef Test Kit

Kent Reef Starter


LCD Digital Thermometer

StevieT's Media Basket

Purigen and Boyd's Chemipure Combo for Filtration


23 Pounds of Fiji Live Rock plus some rubble.

25 Pounds of Aragonite for 1.5 inch Base.

Coralife Salt


Looking to purchase some form of controller. I will do some reading first.


A picture of the tank.




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nice tank. I am about to buy bc14, will ship from nanotuner in the USA.

the shipping costs so much, over 80 US dollars.


by the way, why buy stuff form big al's? Big al's overpriced almost everythingin in Canada.

You can go to pets and ponds website, or J&L, they got reasonable price.

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I shopped around for those prices. I couldn't find anything cheaper on the web for those specific items. They were not big purchases any way so I was not to concerned. Free shipping and here in a few days. The shipping does kill us from the states. It is to bad we don't have the quality like the states. Unfortunately my LFS is an 1.5 hours from me.


I am really enjoying the tank so far, and it hasn't even been very long since I have had it. I am learning so much right now. I am glad I took the time to read and purchase the best products the first time around.


I have been experimenting with ReefCon Pro and Maquarium. I really like ReefCon Pro and I am interested in the X-10 compatibility. I may just purchase it when the trial is over.


Has anyone experimented with x-10 and automated dosing?

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  • 2 weeks later...

The past week I was away a lot of stuff came in:


Adam's Rathje Koralia 1's! Thanks!


Kennl's Tunze 9002 Skimmer. Thanks a lot. Everything is working just fine!


StevieT's Media Basket and Skimmer Cup - Awesome products. Worth the money.A great finished product that is solid and easy to use.


All my chemical filtration products, refractometer, and I was given a 10g setup. There was a huge pile of boxes for me when I got home, so it was awesome to open them all. Just like Christmas.


I have decided on a few corals that I want.


- Frogspawn

- Watermelon Zoa

- Yellow Branching Porites


For the CUC I want a pepermint shrip, a trochus snail and last a Red Serpent brittle star.


I am really excited to get a blue spotted jawfish. Going to wait a good while before he goes in. I want to build a Stoney Waters House for him.


Man I am hooked...





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Another Canadian, eh? ;) I like your rockscape, where'd you pick up your rock?


Picked it up at Big Al's Ottawa. Expensive. Cured. Smelled Clean. 23 pounds worth. Some Green Polyp's and Feather Dusters decided to come along for the ride too!

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Fellow Canuck here as well. I like the scape, looks like you've done your research as well! B)


You can never have too many Canucks. I have done quite a fair bit of reading. Most of the material I find is online, but I just recently read this book;




I thought it was a good start. Really liked it.


I think the scape' is alright, might need a few more pieces of rubble stuck on the top...

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Ahhhh Bryopsis.

Good thing I have been patient and in no rush to add any livestock. I have ordered Kent Tech-M from J&L Aquatics to dose.


Right now and until that shows up the tank is covered and all light sources have been eliminated.


It Starts...


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Yippee!! Another Canadian Reefer.



I agree with the other member, if Possible try to refrain buying from Big Als as they are normally very overpriced.

for example here are the prices for the items you could have gotten at petsandponds.com and what Big Al's is charging online in brackets.


maxijet 900 - $25.99 (big al's $32.99)

API test kit - $26.99 ($39.99)

Refractormeter - $79.99 ($79.99-89.99)

Chemi-pure elite - $15.49 for 11.74oz ($22.99)

Purigen - $15.19 for 250ml ($21.99)

ESU/Coralife digital thermometer - $8.99 ($13.99)

total: 172.64 (big als - $211.94)


This is a difference of $39.30.


the only thing they didn't have is the kent reef starter additives, which basically is the same stuff that purple up does, but the elements are seperated. JLA sold the items seperately though in 8oz bottles would have cost less than $20 together. (Big Al's price for kit $21.99 for 3 4oz bottles.)



Also from my experience with them, your shipping would have been only $7.99 or less. Orders over $200 is free shipping. JLA is free shipping on orders over $100.


You should see if Big Al's has a price match guarantee at all.


Another tip..seeing how you appear to be in Ottawa, go onto your local aquatic forums and see when other people are travelling down to Forthy Fathoms in Gananoque. Jim is the owner and runs it out of his home. He has the best prices for corals I have seen around. $45-$55 for full large colonies and great prices on fish. All his prices include tax and he will do special orders.





Your tank looks to be coming along really well. The scape is awsome. Can't wait to see more pics.

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Thanks again!


That was a lot of work. I didn't purchase everything from Big Al's. I purchased a just a few items from them.

The remainder was from Nano-Reef Classifieds or Ebay. I just purchased some Kent Tech-M from JLA. They are much cheaper by the looks of things.


I am keeping my tank covered which is killing me. Is the bryopsis fairly common? Hopefully JLA can get that shipped out and here fairly quickly.


Those Tunze Nano Skimmers rock. That thing is already pulling skimmate and it hasn't even been a full 24 hours...

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Both JLA and Petsnponds are good. Depending on what I am looking to get I will go to one or the other. JLA especially for T5 bulbs. On average it takes JLA about 5 business days to ship from BC to Ontario.


oh.. Kijiji.ca is another good place to look for stuff as well. Just search under saltwater/ salt water/ or coral and you should get some good hits.

Here is a good one for you for equiptment.



Bryopsis is a stage we all go through. If you have that growing, then you should be able to add your clean up crew if you want since you purchased your live rock fully cured and if your parameters are in check.


I would suggest about 6 hermit crabs.

8 nassarius snails

6 trochus snails

4 nerite snails if you can get them.

1 peppermint shrimp.

10 cerith snails.


The bryopsis will eventually disappear. I got an urchin to take of what grew in my tank when I switched from a 29g to a 55g. I personally liked the look of it flowing in the current, but it was growing too quick.

Adding Cheato to your natural filtration will help as it uses up excess nitrates and phosphates. It also reduces cyano from growing out of control.


That sucks you are covering your tank right now. I found this time in development fun to watch from time to time. Especially at night with a flashlight. You get to see al kinds of critters then. You should be getting lots of pod development about now too.

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This weekend saw my first editions to my tank. I searched the North Bay area in Ontario for a LFS and I found one! Superior Reef


My search led me into the basement of man who specialized in freshwater. I was amazed at his setup and display tanks, but sadly I was disappointed that he had no marine stock. The owner directed me towards a friend of his that he had not heard from in a while. He owned a shop out of his basement, where he specialized in marine aquariums. It was 30 mins from where I was, closer to home. Interested I called him and asked if he was available to show me his store. I was amazed when I showed up. A basement full of marine tanks. Corals and reef, fish, invertebrates and so much more. The place was a lot of fun just to stare at for a good hour. He gladly fed all the aquariums as we browsed around, enticing all the fish to show their faces. He advised me against brittle stars and shrimp at the moment. (We discussed my needs for a CUC, and how my tank has been cycling with live rock for about a month) I purchased 6 Mexican Red Hermit Crabs, 6 Turbo snails, and a feather duster. I have another small frag, lets see who can id it!


Long story short, I as amazed at the price, the service, the setup, and his knowledge. I would highly recommend Superior Reef. It may be an 1 1/2 hours away from me, but well worth the trip.


I aclimatized everyone according to instruction and everyone seems to be doing fantastic. The feather duster is absolutely amazing.












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New Life!


This morning, while waiting for a batch of saltwater to reach temperature I decided to stare at the tank for a bit.


I have noticed a baby Astrea Snail moving around on my glass. I have a snail that seems to have come out of the rock from a feather duster I purchased. It has no shell. It appears to be repairing itself though.


Hundreds of these guys are all over my glass and back wall. I am quite happy that they are there! Copepods.



Finally Coralline Algae spores are showing up!


It appears I am doing well enough to support life. Couple more months and I will think of some fish.

Still want that Blue Spotted Jawfish something bad.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have a new tank!


10 gallon.

12 pounds live rock.

DIY HOB filter.

Biocube 29 stock pump to supply water to filter.

Current USA Nova Extreme 18" 2x20W T-5 10,000K



The Filter





Also I have added a Yellow Tail Damsel to my Biocube. I decided from my reading that this would be an excellent starter fish for my Biocube. The idea was to get something to start with in the biocube and then eventually if I wanted to get something else, I could transfer the fish into the 10g.


The damsel I have read, and been told will do fine in a 10g. Here he is



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Looking good Jamie. Is the second tank going to act as your quarantine tank? I'd love to get a second tank setup one day as a backup.


You got me on the coral.


Good luck with the Bryopsis. I don't know what it is with Canadian reefers and Bryopsis but it seems that every one of us who's started a tank lately is getting hit with it. I've done a pretty good job at keeping it at bay and I agree it's a good idea to add some chaeto.


If you're in Ottawa or the east coast, I would highly recommend checking out www.reefgate.com . One of the owners is a member here and he has some very nice peices.

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+1 on the Bryopsis (though mine seems to be pretty much gone ;) )


I think we all need to start trading frags in bottles in a few months... who wants some fluorescent green palys? :lol:

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