Jump to content


  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

About nhart608

  • Rank
    Community Member
  • Birthday 06/19/1958

Contact Methods

  • Website

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Madison, WI
  1. Refractometer Calibration

    Corals have been fine (other than the lost colony of acans due to getting lazy with my water changes). Just put in a small frogspawn, acan ech. and zoas last weekend, all doing great. I've had a purple gorgonian in there for probably 1 1/2 years and it's thriving and grown a ton. Oh, and I listed the wrong amount of salt in the original post, it is 145g of salt to each gallon, not in two gallons. I'm thinking the calibration fluid is off myself. Guess I could take in a water sample to the lfs and check it against that too.
  2. Nano LED lighting

    I just got the Current USA Orbit LED 18 - 24" fixture for my almost 4 year old 10 gallon nano that started with CFL, then to 70w MH. This size is 18W, with duo 8 and 12K lights along with duo 445nm/460nm actinic blue. I've had it a month and really like it, as do my corals. Running it at 75-80% with the included Ramp Timer Pro controller. Has some nice special effect lighting. Very affordable LED fixture. http://current-usa.com/aquarium-led-lights/orbit-marine-fixtures/orbit-marine/.
  3. I know that this topic has been covered numerous times, but I just had to post this because I'm baffled by the results of some tests I've done in calibrating my refractometer. I have been using the RO/DI method of calibration since I bought my refractometer some 2 1/2 years ago. It was on the directions to use RO/Di so I did. When I measure my salt for water changes, I use a digital scale and use 145g for two gallons of water (measured in 1 gallon distilled water jugs). My reading for salinity with these measurements came in around 1.027, which is fine because then I could add a tad more water to get it remeasured to 1.026 and make sure I had more than two gallons in case I drained out a bit too much water from the tank. Ok, I started reading the subject of calibrating and found so many people say you really shouldn't use RO/DI but a calibration fluid. Since I was ordering some water test kits, I thought, fine, I'll spend the $7 on the fluid and that way I can make sure my salinity is really on. So I measure the salinity of my tank this morning after calibrating it with the purchased fluid and it's showing 1.022! I thought that was very low since I always weigh my salt for changes. I recalibrated with RO/DI and measured my tank water again, my reading was just under 1.026. Big difference, but I wasn't trusting either calibration method now. I read on how to make your own calibration fluid that would approximate ocean water at 35ppt (just over 1.026) with table salt and water. I made a batch per instructions, 3.65 grams of salt per 96.35 grams of water, credit: Randy Holmes-Farley Reef Alchemy in Reefkeeping online. After calibrating with RO/DI, refractometer reads exactly 1.026. Sorry for the length of this, but in the end, calibrating with the RO/DI method matched the known 1.026 salinity of the homemade solution, whereas my newly purchased "35ppt calibration fluid" was off by .003 - .004. According the purchased calibration fluid, my tank's salinity is a barely acceptable 1.022, according to the RO/DI method it's where it should be. Anyone see anything I'm missing here? I would like to trust the purchased calibration fluid, but the numbers don't fit the tests. And yes, I rinsed the refractometer with RO/DI and dried it between each test, and did each test twice.
  4. Water Change

    Do you use one of the siphon hoses with the extendable larger diameter plastic tubes? I do about 1/4 - 1/3 of my crushed coral bed on each water change and hold the siphon right where I blast water into the sandbed. That way a grand majority of the detritus is siphoned out, not floating around the tank.
  5. may have nuked my xenia tank

    I used Purigen once. First, it did nothing noticeable for my nitrates (which weren't that bad to begin with) and second, after regenerating it and flushing the $*#! out of it, it was light brown and smelled like dead fish. I'm not exaggerating. I couldn't bring myself to use it again and tossed it.
  6. Amazing mushroom! Help with ID please?

    Well, it looks like a rhodactis of some sort, but never seen one this frilly. It's beautiful for sure.
  7. Grand Cayman Dive Photos

    Great shots!
  8. Reviving my candy cane

    I've seen mine do this, in a less dramatic fashion, after a polyp developes 2 mouths then they split into two separate heads. It's a slow process but the tissue stretches between the heads as they separate.
  9. Peroxide and Hair Algae

    You are being rather helpful BulkRate. I posited the question to get opinions. The GHA is gawdaweful in appearance, but I have the back of my tank painted so I can't see it through the display tank. A couple of things that I worry about though is the usual question of what is fueling all that growth. I faithfully change 2 gallons (20+%) of water every week, siphon the substrate (crushed coral) while blowing areas of water into it with a turkey baster. I feed flake once per day for the O. clown and bicolor blenny, but only an amount that they eat in a few minutes, small amounts at a time. My CC crew is a bit light, 2 nassarius and 2 ceriths, 1 LARGE hermit crab. The other thing that I think about is if the so much GHA is pulling nitrates out, is it affecting my mangrove growth? With turf scrubbers, you export the nutrients by removing the nutrient "sponge". Shouldn't I be exporting it somehow? I'm thankful that even though a few small clumps of GHA that have floated into the tank from the outflow from the fuge, it's never taken hold anywhere. Am I playing with fire that the GHA could spread into the tank? I always appreciate opinions.
  10. Peroxide and Hair Algae

    That's what I was thinking, maybe try it on an unopened mangrove to see if the roots will survive it. Maybe try a the same with a small clump of the chaeto? I GHA has totally infested the chaeto ball, no way to manually remove it..
  11. Peroxide and Hair Algae

    I know this topic has been covered in lots of other forums/posts, but I have a unique situation I would love to get opinions on. I have a 10 gallon tank with a 1 gallon HOB fuge in which I house chaeto and some red mangroves. Everything in the fuge is doing well, the mangroves (3 out of 5) have leafed out, all have heathly root systems. The chaeto grows at a decent rate as well. I haven't had nitrates or measurable phosphorus in months. The tank inhabitants are all doing well also. Here's the problem. The healthy growth in the fuge includes a mess of GHA. It's entangled on the mangrove stems and roots, and has totally invaded the chaeto ball. No where else in my tank do I have a single strand of GHA. Mind you this issue has been going on for at least 4 months. Even before the GHA started in, my tank perameters were fine. In another post a while back I had mentioned this issue and someone said that it looked like I had accidentally created a turf scrubber in my fuge. I've cleaned out as much GHA in the fuge manually as possible but of course it comes back. So, do I try a 50/50 peroxide/tank water dip on the mangroves and chaeto, or just leave well enough alone (meaning periodic manual removal) since it is isolated to the fuge?
  12. First Mistake?

    It's not a mistake, it's a preference. All substrates need maintenance of some sort. I have crushed coral in my 10 gallon, been running for 2 years. Can't say I've seen any issues but I do use a turkey baster and roil up part of the bed each weekly water change, sucking up the detrius with the siphon as I go. That said, I should also say that I do sometimes think of changing it out for sand, just to try it out. Oh, of course if you want to change it out, now is certainly the time to do it.
  13. 10 Gallon Help

    My 10 gallon just turned two years old in March. Had no saltwater experience prior, but read a TON before starting my tank. Use a 70watt MH pendant with 14k bulb, HOB filter for carbon, HOB 1 gallon fuge with chaeto and 5 red mangroves For 1 1/2 years I've kept an O. Clown and a Bicolor Blenny, small CUC. For corals I have red mushrooms, green mushrooms, a duncan, GSP, pulsing xenia, two acan colonies, 3 small zoa colonies, candy cane, a blastomussa merletti and a purple plume gorgonian. The one thing I may have done differently was to not use crushed coral as a substrate, but I don't think it's really harmed anything, just blast out areas of detrius every week on my two gallon water change. Just read a lot, take things slowly, know that maintenance doesn't really take that long per week, but you just have to do it consistently. You can do it!
  14. HELP...Im new

    If you got the live rock from a lfs and got it in pretty quickly, you may see minimal ammonia or none. I had the exact same situation when I started my tank. Ammonia peaked at .25.
  15. 10g up and running

    Off to a good start. My 10 gal just turned 2 years old last month, still love it, always something new to learn.