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HELP! Am I crazy?


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My 12gallon is having some flow issues and I'm getting a real bad outbreak of cyano in some spots! ....... here's my irrational thoughts.


I am really tired of the overall look and feel of the tank, and was seriously considering a partial teardown. Right now I have about 1.5 inches of sand and one BIG piece of LR to which I've epoxied some corals too (zoo's), a red open brain some candy canes and some balsto's. I have a friend with a 125gallon reef that would be more than willing to "Hold" my corals for me while I did this, but I want to get it back up as soon as possible with smaller pieces of LR ... which will HOPEFULLY give me some better flow!


OK so ... if I give him the corals that are not epoxied and take out the rock that has the zoo's epoxied to it can I chisel the rock away under them to seperate them or what can be done to remove them from the rock?


THEN, I want to syphon most of the sand out, only leaving a very small bit to cover the bottom. do at least a 50-75% water change and syphon out the buildup in the rear chambers. clean the pump out and start all over.


I'm thinking I can probably chisel the one big piece of rock down into smaller, but I'm seriously liking the look of "Branch" style rock and may even go that route.


How long am I looking at down time before putting my corals back in?



any info that you can give me would be great. or am I just completly crazy?




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Dude, you are wacko! I guess I am too, because I'd take a radical approach to get rid of it too. I hate bubble algea more than I hate cyano. I freak out when I see one.

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hahaha, I think it's more the overall look of the tank that has me depressed.

The cyano plays into it don't get me wrong, but I should have planned more before I initialy setup. Kinda like the old saying goes ... "measure twice - cut once"


That's what I get for being imaptient

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Why do you want to tare down the whole tank. If you just don't like the rock take it out (after you remove the coral) and break it up. Don't change your water or your sand right away. Then you don't have to send your corals to your friend.


IME the best way to beat algae is to ride them out. Figure out what is causing the outbreak. If it’s a flow problem, braking up the rock with solve it. If you take out the sand and the water you're just going to have a new outbreak in a few months. It would be like restarting your tank.

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well I have tried everything short of absolutely not feeding the tank at all to rid the the tanks of cyano ... that stuff is relentless.


I only have one fish in there and he only get's fed a pinch every other day or two! I've tested phosphates and that's not the problem. added an extra little Powerhead for flow and that only seems to break the cyano up and blow it around? Water params are normal, the only thing I can think of is buildup in the rear chambers causing this problem.

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you can remove everything from the rear chambers and siphon out all of the junk without disrupting the display area

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yeah already did that too, but I'm sure all the particles that made it into the main while pulling the stuff out have again settled in the rear chambers. so that could turn into a never ending battle.


I guess I'm looking for a yeah go ahead and do it , just be prepared to wait through a cycle or yeah go ahead and do it, but do it this way so you don't have another cycle type answer. Thanks for the input so far!

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I 've done what you are talking about. It was the best move I ever did. I even cooked my rocks for 3 minths in the process. Figured out how to increase flow and the efficiency or it, and replaced the sand bed.


Now no algae, cleanest my tank has ever been.

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I don't think removing the sand is the answer. Unless of course you just decided that you don't like the look. It took forever for my cube to get through the algae period, I would say about 4 months.


I can understand not being satified with the aquascaping, but you can remove that, break it apart or replace it with little of no cycle involved. Just make sure you use fully cured LR. Even then you might experience a mini cycle.


What size pump are you running and do you have a hydro-flo installed?


If you do decide to get rid of the sand I would strongly suggest moving all the livestock to your friends tank. Typically what happens is that you will have a Nitrate spike after you remove the sand because you are disturbing all of the trapped bacteria in the sand.


Here ia Picture of my cube during the algae battle. It got worse if you can believe that:



Good Luck,


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NanoBob - your tank looks like a toilet bowl after the scrubbin bubbles hit it compared to mine. I wish my problem was just some brown algea, I have a horrible outbreak of cyano right now and can't get it under



I'm gonna sleep on it a few days and see what I can come up with. as for the pump I'm runnin a mini-jet 606 and no Hydro-Flow .... I could never understnad how when it rotates it doesn't spit water at the top rotation!

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Everyone goes through cyano....I had it for about 3 months after I setup my tank...You just need to ride it out...There is no reason to break down the tank


To help get rid of cyano:


More Flow

shorter photoperiod

Less feeding (you dont feed much)

move the sand bed around or suck out the algae once a day

Buy a bunch of those small black nassarius snails from ebay...I have 50 of them in my 60 and they helped a lot!


I say wait it out...Id did and it went away

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well my cyano started off about 5 months ago as a dime sized piece directly under the output nozzle. now it has grown into a sheet the size of a dollar in the same place and another sheet the same size on the other side of the tank!


And as you suggested ...


More Flow - added a MJ 400 series in ... no change

Less Feeding - only feed on tiny pinch every other day or 2

shorter photoperiod - already down to less than 6 hours

move sand bed/remove algae - done ... and within a day it's back

Nass. Snails - have some and they stay far away from the cyano


I think I have tried everything and then some short of adding chemicals for a quick fix, and now I'm ready to just call it quits on this little tank!

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The nassarius snails dont eat the algae they miz up the sandbed...I put 50 small black ones and 5 huge white ones in my tank and havent had a cyano problem ever since

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I say go on ebay and order 25 of the cheap black ones and throw them in the tank....Ill bet the cyano is gone pretty quick

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I say go on ebay and order 25 of the cheap black ones and throw them in the tank....Ill bet the cyano is gone pretty quick



Mine went away pretty quickly too and I toss in more food than you'd believe.

Are you using RO/DI water?

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i under your fustration. i had jbl cube for about a year, for the record

the cube only have room for 8 gallon of without any rock, sand etc.

the 12 gallon thing is false, bad flow among other things

i am a big fan of raising the rock or rocks off the sand with some

pvc couplings for support. these allows for better flow around the rock

and does not create dead spots in your sand bed.

or you can add the rock first and back fill with sand.

i can believe that people add a huge amount of sand then dump all this

rock on it..............no clue it nuts

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