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Over the EDGE


marcandre

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Hello, this thread is meant to be kept as a journal for myself to document my venture in the saltwater world. However please do comment and ask questions if any along the way. I know i will be asking questions as they pop up.

 

- 4 weeks:

I bought a Fluval Edge at the end of November and set it up as Freshwater Aquarium. I plugged everything in, put the water in and waited till the sediments fell to the bottom. 2 days after, i added 3 male guppies (2 red and 1 white... true canadian!!!!). I didnt read to much about cycling as my parents had a big 60g when i was young and i didn't remember them having to check any water parameters or do any cycle (this was from age 6 to 12) so i thought a fresh water was basically plug and play.

 

-3 to -2 weeks:

Without much surprise, 2 out of the 3 fish died and the last one lost its beautiful red colouring and was doing badly. I started reading different forums to increase my knowledge on how to keep a thriving aquarium. Although i learned a lot, it seemed that i would always divert my attention to saltwater for no reason other than the sheer beauty of this reef tanks (I am a ScubaDiving instructor that spends all of his summer breaks teaching in mexico so i am literally in love with the ocean and its inhabitants).

 

-1 week:

After 3 weeks of suffering :( , my final guppy died. Determined that this would give me a fresh start, i went to a different LFS to buy a test kit where i would now complete a Fish-less Nitrogen Cycle for my freshwater tank. The new LFS was much smaller than the old one i went and was divided between saltwater fish and fresh water fish (50/50). My curiosity brought me to the saltwater side where i spent a good thirty minutes just looking at the fish, the corals and the anemones. A store clerk then asked me how he could help me. I was about to ask about my test kit but i dont know why, i simply asked him : How hard is it to convert a Fluval Edge into SaltWater? His answer was simple : It can be very easy, or it can be very hard depending on what you put in it. He showed me the simplest way i could achieve the transformation and keep a clownfish or two healthy with no corals (FOWLR) : Sand, Salt, Powerhead, LiveRock... Easy enough for me, i was hooked and bought immediately the sand, the salt and the Powerhead

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okay the fun part starts...

 

Week 0:

Once back home, i emptied my current freshwater aquarium and removed the rubble. I then hosed it down and cleaned it thoroughly although it wasn't that dirty.

My first step was to create my saltwater. I mixed my salt with tap water until it reached an SG of 1.023. I was advised not to use RO/DI water because i had no desire to keep corals and therefore tap water was fine. Anyways, once the water was added, i added the sand at the bottom of the tank. I did not use live sand as the clerk told me that it was once again an overkill as the sand would become live in no time. I plugged everything in and waited till the water cleared up. This took about 2-3 days.

I was told to wait about 3 days before adding live rock to my system. Still not sure why i was told? To be extra safe and not do another mass murder like i did with he freshwater setup, i waited one week

 

Week 1:

At the start of the week, I went back to the same LFS and brought a sample of my water for them to analyze. I was happy about this as i thought i would save a couple bucks on a good test kit. So the clerk told me that all was good and i was ready to ad live rock. I purchased 7lbs of cured live rock (don't know what kind) and added it to my tank

week1.jpgDont know my water parameters other than the water temp ranging from 76 at night to 82 during the day.

Using the stock halogen bulbs with 4 LED strips bought at IKEA. I kept the light on 12 hours

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Be careful with those Ikea lights. If they aren't waterproof I suggest coating them with either clear epoxy or silicone. Welcome to reefing and good luck,

 

-Chris (A fellow reef n00b)

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hahaha i know... i learned it the hard way... i am down to 3 led strips. I know covered both ends of the strip with electrical tape and never keep them on when doing anything in the tank

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hahaha i know... i learned it the hard way... i am down to 3 led strips. I know covered both ends of the strip with electrical tape and never keep them on when doing anything in the tank

 

You are going to have to worry about salt creep corroding them also fully coating them would be your best bet. If you plan on ever replacing them I suggest the Ecoxotic Ecopico LED strips. They are fully waterproof. I am currently running 3 of them on my Fluval Edge 12 gallon.

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week 2:

Even if i was told to wait 3 weeks before coming back to the shop and add the fish i wanted, i cam back the following week with a sample of water for them to do my tests. I also picked up 2 Astrea snails and 3 hermits (2 blue footed and one scarlet) to become my dedicated cleanup crew. I wanted a clean up crew right away because my beautiful sparkling white sand was becoming brown and had some dirt on it that made it hard to removing while syphoning. During that week, i also changed the placements of the rocks a bit. I think it was also during that week that i subscribed to this forum...

DSC_12322.jpg

Still unaware of my water parameters other than a constant SG of 1.023 with the help of daily topoffs and huge Temp variations because of the heating of the halogens (from 76 to 80)

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You are going to have to worry about salt creep corroding them also fully coating them would be your best bet. If you plan on ever replacing them I suggest the Ecoxotic Ecopico LED strips. They are fully waterproof. I am currently running 3 of them on my Fluval Edge 12 gallon.

 

I scrub off the salt water creep a couple times a week. I will however switch them eventually. Which one in particular did u get? which wattage and which color?

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I scrub off the salt water creep a couple times a week. I will however switch them eventually. Which one in particular did u get? which wattage and which color?

 

I have:

1x EcoPico LED Strip, 453nm Blue

2x EcoPico LED Strip, 12K White/453nm Blue

 

I have them running with the stock lighting which, on the new Fluval Edges, are LEDS.

 

Fluval sells MR11 LED bulbs to swap out the old stock halogens as well.

http://www.partsandmedia.com/fledulbrsppr.html

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week 3:

ALot of things happened during week 3.

First off, i bought myself a water test kit on monday and all my parameters were in check (0 ammonia, 0 NO2-, 0 NO3- and a pH of 8). I tested the water every day until sunday and everything was still good.

I called the lfs and asked them if they had any clownfish which they didnt. I searched a new lfs online and called them. I liked the vibe of the guy on the phone as well as his way of expressing his ideas towards my tank and his general knowledge of SaltWater aquariums. Upon arrival at the new lfs, i was sold. The place was immaculate! All his tanks were thriving and all the employees seemed to know and enjoy their stuff :) It is maybe far away (30 minutes) but i think it wilI be worth the time. I most have spent 1.5 hours with the manager talking about my tank and all other saltwater related subjects. I left his store with new led bulbs, a bigger/better heater and 2 clownfish.

DSC_12342.jpg

Jay is a small fancy ocellaris clown fish

DSC_12332.jpg

Kay is a black and white ocellaris clown fish. Kinda sad he will loose his orange nose with time... gives him attitude!!

DSC_12323.jpg

Amm : 0

Nitrite : 0

Nitrate : 0

pH : 8

Temp : constant at 78.5 :)

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week 3:

ALot of things happened during week 3.

First off, i bought myself a water test kit on monday and all my parameters were in check (0 ammonia, 0 NO2-, 0 NO3- and a pH of 8). I tested the water every day until sunday and everything was still good.

I called the lfs and asked them if they had any clownfish which they didnt. I searched a new lfs online and called them. I liked the vibe of the guy on the phone as well as his way of expressing his ideas towards my tank and his general knowledge of SaltWater aquariums. Upon arrival at the new lfs, i was sold. The place was immaculate! All his tanks were thriving and all the employees seemed to know and enjoy their stuff :) It is maybe far away (30 minutes) but i think it wilI be worth the time. I most have spent 1.5 hours with the manager talking about my tank and all other saltwater related subjects. I left his store with new led bulbs, a bigger/better heater and 2 clownfish.

DSC_12342.jpg

Jay is a small fancy ocellaris clown fish

DSC_12332.jpg

Kay is a black and white ocellaris clown fish. Kinda sad he will loose his orange nose with time... gives him attitude!!

DSC_12323.jpg

Amm : 0

Nitrite : 0

Nitrate : 0

pH : 8

Temp : constant at 78.5 :)

 

Great looking fish!

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I have:

1x EcoPico LED Strip, 453nm Blue

2x EcoPico LED Strip, 12K White/453nm Blue

 

I have them running with the stock lighting which, on the new Fluval Edges, are LEDS.

 

Fluval sells MR11 LED bulbs to swap out the old stock halogens as well.

http://www.partsandmedia.com/fledulbrsppr.html

 

I will definitely look into that when i will change the strips. Where did u place them? I have them running along the edge of the top

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I will definitely look into that when i will change the strips. Where did u place them? I have them running along the edge of the top

 

I have the all blue one attached to the light arm behind the stock lights and the other two attached directly to hood in the front. They fit perfectly. I could probably also add one more on the light arm.

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forgot to add that on week 3, i purchased a jug of pre mixed saltwater. This will limit my use of tap water to only top offs. I know tap is not ideal but there is no LFS that sells some near me :(

 

week 4:

The fish are doing great. I was scared that they werent eating much but i think i had it all wrong. I was feeding them too much. Fish eat when they are hungry if not they will play with the food but not eat it, that and ignore it completely. Kay (the b/w one) didnt eat at all one day. I was sure he had ich, brook and all the other illness' and then the following ay he ate fine. I might have become obsessed...

Anyways, i returned to my lfs and picked up some blue mushrooms to add to the tank. They are still opening up and i believe will be a great addition to the tank and add some color!

they have now almost doubled in size.

This might be unrealistic but it would be pretty cool if the clowns decided to host them...

mushroom.jpg

 

FTSweek4.jpg

All parameters are still in check!

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forgot to add that on week 3, i purchased a jug of pre mixed saltwater. This will limit my use of tap water to only top offs. I know tap is not ideal but there is no LFS that sells some near me :(

 

week 4:

The fish are doing great. I was scared that they werent eating much but i think i had it all wrong. I was feeding them too much. Fish eat when they are hungry if not they will play with the food but not eat it, that and ignore it completely. Kay (the b/w one) didnt eat at all one day. I was sure he had ich, brook and all the other illness' and then the following ay he ate fine. I might have become obsessed...

Anyways, i returned to my lfs and picked up some blue mushrooms to add to the tank. They are still opening up and i believe will be a great addition to the tank and add some color!

they have now almost doubled in size.

This might be unrealistic but it would be pretty cool if the clowns decided to host them...

mushroom.jpg

 

FTSweek4.jpg

All parameters are still in check!

 

What happened to your FOWLR? LOL! You've got that coral itch. Before you know it it's gonna be filled with zoas and rics.

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Im getting kind of confused.

From my research, it is unlikely for me to be able to keep a BTA or some kind of frogspawn in my tank due to its size yet every picture i see of a mature Fluval Edge has one established...

 

Whate are the big drawbacks of having a Frogspawn in a small Fluval Edge?

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Whate are the big drawbacks of having a Frogspawn in a small Fluval Edge?

Maybe that it will get to big and take over other coral and also sometimes they can have long stinging sweeper tentacles that could harm other coral. Check this out. :)

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Tank looks great I'm also interested why you couldn't have a frogspawn. I would say no to a nem, but I think you could get away with a frogspawn. Unless someone has a reason. Id like to know as well.

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week 5:

A couple new additions this week. For starters, i felt like my CUC was not sufficient as my sand was getting very dirty despite me trying to siphon the top of it. I was set to add a nassarius snail but unfortunately my lfs did not have any for sale. I bought however a sea star that i was told would clean up my sand just as good if not better than the snail. My lfs told me however that i should exchange the echinoderm when he gets some nassarius snails in his shop. Not sure i will do it for now. After some research, i learned that the star could live a good year or so in my pico tank until it will begin to be uncomfortable. I think i will exchange it then. sandsifter.jpg

 

Second, i also decided to add a frogspawn to my tank. I reorganized my liverock and wedged my frogspawn close to the top of my liverock pyramid. I re-angled my powerhead to avoid having the flow directly on the frogspawn. Only problem now is that the current angle that it is in makes my sand move and creates craters. The frag looks awesome and seems to be doing good. It has 3 heads. Tentacles close at night and reopen when the lights are on. Now if only the clown fish could find an interest in it...

Frogspawn.jpg

 

I also changed the led sticks that i had. I changed my IKEA non-waterproof sticks for two ecoxotic ecopico strips. One is pure Blue and the other is 50/50 blue and white. They really look amazing. IM thinking of adding a second pure blue strip to add some color to my tank!

When it comes to my fish and water parameters, everything is doing great. Parameters are constant and both my fish look happy. I have been feeding them only flakes since the start of this week and they dont seem to mind. Its fun to see them hurry and get the food before the cleaner shrimp realizes that there is food and ultimately grabs it.

FTSweek5.jpg

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