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Cultivated Reef

AIO advice needed


limpert

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This is how i currently have my 28g NC pro rear chambers setup:

 

sotnnm.png

 

I'm wondering if anyone can offer advice.. I bought this setup used and I'm considering removing the black foam that i've marked green and replacing it with eggcrate or something that will hold back the macro algae and yet not trap detritus. How do other's filter their AIOs?

 

I'm keeping LPS corals. Other considerations i've made are removing the skimmer and just running the fuge in the back - the skimmer is relatively loud and bulky... Plus its a pain having to keep the water level constant for the skimmer and topping off with some amount of salt to keep my salinity stable

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There are some that advise not to use foam, and the like in SW tanks because it can become a nitrate breeding ground. If you were to rinse the foam daily or close to that you might be able to get away with keeping it. But, my personal opinion is to use the eggcrate and avoid the possibility.

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I have my JBJ set up like:

 

...........^ (eshopps skimmer) v

Pump|Heater|Media Rack|Chaeto| Chaeto

......................................................^eggcrate

 

I don't have sponges anymore. I use filter floss that I change every week on top of the media rack. I have 2 pieces of eggcrate cut so they angle down on the 5th chamber to keep the chaeto from being pulled back to the pump.

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I think i'll switch to eggcrate and toss the sponges. I only wish i could purchase small pieces and not an entire sheet...

 

I have my JBJ set up like:

 

...........^ (eshopps skimmer) v

Pump|Heater|Media Rack|Chaeto| Chaeto

......................................................^eggcrate

 

I don't have sponges anymore. I use filter floss that I change every week on top of the media rack. I have 2 pieces of eggcrate cut so they angle down on the 5th chamber to keep the chaeto from being pulled back to the pump.

 

I'm having trouble envisioning your setup

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  • 2 weeks later...

Oh good- I finally stumbled across this topic that has been baffling me- a newbie with NO saltwater tank experience, had never seen an AIO before purchase, and didn't realize the manufacturers set up wasn't ideal until i have had emergency level nitrate levels :angry:. All that is under control but I still battle levels trying to rise- had removed the sponge after stumbling across that somewhere. Still have the ceramic bio things in a media bag with chaeto on top of that. I substituted filter floss where the sponge was- my chamber from the front of the tank view right to left are as such... chamber 1) filter floss, 2) heater, 3) chaeto on top, ceramic bio media on bottom, an 'Algone' bag in the side where water enters (my solution to maintaining low nitrate levels after everything was under control but continues to try to spike) 4) return pump. I started the tank after cycling my rock and getting daily reading of zero across the board for 3 days before setting up tank and adding my clowns. I used 'Aquabella' to try and make my life a bit easier because I realize I'm still pretty naive on a lot of things. I would love any advice on the filtration... I also have macro algae in the tank to help. My bio load is the two juvenile clowns, and a shrimp. I had added a CUC the day before the spike so I have some idea that as there were WAY too many snails that the death of some of them contributed to the spike, but as I cycled the rock, have macro algae, and used the aquabella I honestly thought that I would be ok :huh:.

 

Should I ditch the ceramic things... I keep seeing people say bioballs are undesirable so I assume these are the same? Should I go ahead and get a protein skimmer- the LFS didn't think it would be necessary but they are a smaller establishment and don't have anything too fancy, no corals or anything.

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Removed the ceramic cylinders and vwhala! crystal clear water and stable nitrate levels without water changes! It was too good to be true it seemed, but simpler is definitely better.

 

And to top it off, my shrimp molted tonight and scared the sh** out of me! I thought, "Oh great, another casualty!" Then I caught glimpse of some antennae from behind some rock and low and behold there he was. Alive and well and his broken 'feeler' (as we call them) that he came with was restored to it's long and luxerious glory:) He is gorgeous! I'm guessing it is a sign that all is well in saltwater land at my house.

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