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My 12gal Nanocube journey begins


mrbutter27

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Thanks to all those who helped me in understanding info on this steep learning curve. Today i picked up a 12g nanocube and decided it was less financial startup and risk for messing up. I can always move onto bigger tanks in the future.

 

Due to some good timing and luck, my crazy and obsessive perseverance to stop at nothing to get what i want (pretty much a good Sw water for cheap), and a little bit of craigslisting skills, I fell upon some a real great deal.

 

Pictures are coming up soon, and as soon as they do, I need some help identifying some equipment and products that the guy gave me.

 

Basically off the top of my head, i got a 12gal (dirty as HELL) nanocube, a black stand for it, power circuit thing with a timer on it, a 20gal tank (also very dirty), T5 lights for the 20gal (4 bulbs, 2 need replacing), a big protein skimmer for the 20g, some pumps, a powerhead of some sort, along with a bunch of product like Marine Water test kit, a really nice lookin refractometer that's made of metal with a case, sponge, etc.

All for $60.

I really put in about 3 hours of backbreaking grease work into cleaning everything and still going but I think it's worth it. I jus have to test it to make sure everything works.

 

Questions:

 

1) Regarding cleaning a very dirty tank, are there any precautions other than not using soap and using acrylic safe sponge for the tank? There is a TON .. like a TON of purple and white stuff on the back of the nanocube which is literally identical to what appears to be 3 year old toothpaste crusted on. I spent 3 hours grinding and sanding it off and still got more to go. Is there an easier way to remove this stuff? Is it dead algae? If i don't get all of it, isit going to spread and come back with a vengeance once I get started?

 

2) the nanocube didn't come with a manual. I was cleaning it and empted everything in the back compartments and there are 3 black sponges in the very left (looking directly at the glass) compartment. There is also a black bag/net of charcoal. Where does this go?

 

3) After physical cleaning, is there anything i need to do .. like use some aqua sanitizer or something?

 

I am new to everything and did lots of reading but still would appreciate some pointers.

I went to a LFS and the guy basically said, after all the cleaning, bring a 5 gal container for some saltwater, pick up live rock (he charges $6/lb!!), get live sand (he charges $17 for 10lbs of Fiji Pink in a package), and some bio-spira bacteria to cycle faster (at $17) and also add a fish. sounds about right? (other than the pricing lol)

 

Pictures coming up soon.

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lakshwadeep

1

The purple/white things are the remains of coralline algae, which make calcareous skeletons. An acid will dissolve it; vinegar is one relatively nontoxic option. Grinding/sanding usually is unnecessary, and coralline will eventually grow back on it. Coralline is usually desirable and a sign of good water quality; although, it's unlikely any of it will survive (even a few minutes of exposure to air is often fatal).

 

2

Visit the all-in-one tank forum and members aquariums forum for info on nanocubes; there are a number of common modifications done.

 

3

Generally you don't need to sanitize anything. You could use a very dilute bleach solution, if you want.

 

The advice from the LFS sounds about right for the norm of opportunistic hustling common to those stores...

 

Get roughly 1-1.5 lbs of rock per gallon; porous/light rock is more desirable (not to mention cheaper). The live rock price is not too bad, depending on the quality.

 

You don't need to by bagged "live" sand, which has little life after sitting on the shelf. Any sand will become "live" when you have live rock; dry sand is great (avoid crushed coral because of its large grain size).

 

Bio-spira is not going to make the cycle faster or slower; the cycle's length is dependent on the rock you have because live rock have all the bacteria you need and die-off on the rock is the cause of the cycle. Cured ("pre-cycled") rock often has a minimal cycle.

 

Adding a fish during the cycle is very bad, not to mention stressful for the fish. You only need rock for a cycle. You monitor a cycle through your test kits (see the relevant article in the library), but it's important to check if your test kits' brand(s) are reliable or not.

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Questions:

 

2) the nanocube didn't come with a manual. I was cleaning it and empted everything in the back compartments and there are 3 black sponges in the very left (looking directly at the glass) compartment. There is also a black bag/net of charcoal. Where does this go?

 

On the 12g nano, it sounds like it still has the stock sponges and carbon that came with the tank. That carbon is really only good for a couple of months. I would recommend getting rid of the sponges and the carbon and getting a media basket for the tank. In the basket it's best to run filter floss and chemi-pure elite (which is a replacement for your carbon but much better) Here is a link for the media basket.

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On the 12g nano, it sounds like it still has the stock sponges and carbon that came with the tank. That carbon is really only good for a couple of months. I would recommend getting rid of the sponges and the carbon and getting a media basket for the tank. In the basket it's best to run filter floss and chemi-pure elite (which is a replacement for your carbon but much better) Here is a link for the media basket.

 

What is the purpose of the media basket? Is it to hold the filter floss and chemi pure elite up? Can't I just stack a them on top of each other on the compartment without using a basket?

 

The previous owner seemed to get rid of the second compartment entirely and i found he has put tons of live rock in there stacked on top of each other. I guess that could work better than having bio balls.

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Some pictures:

 

The nanocube

218ey.jpg

 

Tons of caked toothpaste lol. after 3 hours of intense scrubbing, scraping, razoring, sanding, still have a little left around the pump and vents

219xr.jpg

 

The stand minor warping from getting wet that's not visible when the tank is place on top. Little sharpie did the trick.

220br.jpg

 

Some of the extras he included

223j.jpg

 

Can someone tell me what the small black ball(s) are right in the middle of the picture? What is the cylinder tube with blue clay like stuff for? (also in the middle of the picture)

225so.jpg

 

A maxijet 1200

227xt.jpg

 

SEIO super power pump

226t.jpg

 

Cleaning everything like crazy in the socal sun

228r.jpg

 

Broke the heater that was included on the cement

229y.jpg

 

 

20g tank after cleaning

240vq.jpg

 

 

Three 5gal containers with T5 lights for the 20gal

231l.jpg

 

Does anyone know what this piece is for? It fell on the ground at some point

242op.jpg

 

 

 

Most of the stuff he included like the maxi jet, heater, etc was used for the 20gal. Would the maxijet1200 be too powerful for the nanocube?

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black ball=airstone

clay stick=epoxy putty

 

the last piece is a maxijet holder. suction cups attach their backs to the three corner notches, the pump slides into the middle notch thingy, and then you stick it to the glass. if you didnt get any suctions cups this will not help you.

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