Cycling

Discussion in 'Beginner Discussions' started by Kunhardt, 18 Nov 2008.

  1. Kunhardt

    Kunhardt

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    Its weird with all the thousands of threads in this forum i havent found one that has a lot of info on cycling a tank. I understand how the cycle works and why u need to do it, but my question is this...

    I am getting a new 3ft tank soon, upgrading from the headache i call my 10 gallon nano, as i am hoping to add a sump, skimmer and with larger water quantity getting a more stable system. I plan on transfering the inhabitants of my 10 gallon tank to the new system, but what i want to know is if i have to wait out a full cycling of the new tank or, if i can add my live rock, water and sand from my old tank would that be enough to sustain the tank? My feeling is no, but i am not an expert. Also is there a way to cycle water in the mean while for a new system before i get it and start it up? Would the water that in my bin for water changes be cycling at this moment? or would it need something in there as well to cycle in there? maybe if i buy some live rock and add it to the water bin it would cycle and i could start up the tank straight away?
    I fear ppl are going to start shouting "NOOOO!!!!" :nono: but u never know unless u ask.
    I suppose some clarity needs to be made to me on what actually gets cycled, the water only or does the sand bed go through a cycling process too?
     
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  3. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Hi Kunhardt,

    i am no expert but the way i understand things is that the heart of the system is the bacteria, and the bacteria live in the DSB....... i would suggest that IF you could set up the sump for your new system, with DSb etc and plumb it into your current system then your cycle time may be greatly reduced... very little bacteria is contained within the water column....
     
  4. Kunhardt

    Kunhardt Thread Starter

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    This makes sense, as u can do 100% water changes and it doesnt effect the system negatively. Problem would be that my sand bed of my existing tank wont cover the new tank it would probably make up a good deal of it, but not the full amout, and could not move it without moving the livestock as well. Maybe i could send the to the LFS for a vacation ;). I think definately if i can get the sump set up it would full the DSB needed in there...urgh so confused. :p
     
  5. leslie hempel

    leslie hempel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    ps i know someone selling some tanks if you keen you could make him an offer im sure if its reasonable he will accept.. just saw him at the LFS a few minutes ago...
     
  6. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    I would still suggest a cycle, at least a short one. Make up the new water in the new tank and get it to the right salinity and temp. Put some of your current tank's substrate and live rock (without corals on them) in the new tank. Let it run for 2 weeks and everytime you do a waterchange, take out some water on the new tank as well and add the water from the current tank in there to speed up the bacteria process. It might go through an algae fase again.

    That's what I would do anyway - just to be safe ;)
     
  7. Kunhardt

    Kunhardt Thread Starter

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    Would u say leave all live stock in the old tank or just the corals as they would be the most prone to an unbalance system. Only other stuff is hermits, cleaner shrimp, a yellow tail damsel and a yellow goby. Sure the hermits would be ok, not so sure about the rest although they are hardy. Reason i ask is, if i take out all the rocks there will be no places for the fish to stay :(
     
  8. Kunhardt

    Kunhardt Thread Starter

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    What size tank les? And any equipment?
     
  9. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    That's why I said some and not all of it ;) - it is just to seed the new tank's substrate and introduce some of the good bacteria currently in your other system.
     
  10. leslie hempel

    leslie hempel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    3ft and 4ft one had an overflow fitted cant remember which... i could even help you build something if you are limited to a particular area... whatever.. i need a project to get my mind off of work..
     
  11. Kunhardt

    Kunhardt Thread Starter

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    :( sorry tobes, read through that a little fast and did see it was some and not all ;).

    although some in my tank would mean taking one out and leaving one piece behind lol.
     
  12. Kunhardt

    Kunhardt Thread Starter

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    Isn't your 1.2 project still going? :whistling: If you want a project could u build an overflow for a tank i get that is not sump ready?
     
  13. leslie hempel

    leslie hempel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    what tank? can the glass you want drilled be taken off as i am not to clued on drilling just yet...
     
  14. Falcon

    Falcon

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    think of it this way kunhard.

    just say for example each rock in your system has enough bacteria to eliminate the waste from one fish/coral.

    so if you had to transfer one rock and one fish to a new 'pure' system you get perfect balance and the cycle will already be completely balanced.

    now you already have all your substrate and fish/corals and rocks in balance right,so simply make sure the new system is pure and acclimatise everything at once into the bigger volume.


    EVEN THOUGH YOUR VOLUME IS MORE YOUR ACTUAL BIO-LOAD AND BACTERIA TO HANDLE THE LOAD IS BALANCED.

    so if you make sure your new system is pure i.e everything is clean and theres no possibility of die of(no nitrates,ammonia,phos or nitrites) then you can add your existing stock and rocks and substrate as is but remember for this to work even the substrate and live rock has to be acclimatised to the newer water slowly.
     
  15. Kunhardt

    Kunhardt Thread Starter

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    Seems logical, how do u acclimatise live rock and substrate? same as anything else? And what happens if i add more substrate and live rock to the tank with the old substrate? will this not affect the balance?
     
  16. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    That's why I said you need to do a cycle again (to be safe), obviously you're going to add more live rock and substrate (which could have die-off creating ammonia spikes)

    and the LR piece from the current tank will help to seed everything.
     
  17. Kunhardt

    Kunhardt Thread Starter

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    It probably is better to be safe then land up wiping out everything. How is sand from the sea as aposed to crushed coral from the LFS? It would be more live i take it, but would this then cause more die back, thus causing the tank to take longer to cycle? or if i get it in within a short time period would the die back be minimised?
     
  18. Kunhardt

    Kunhardt Thread Starter

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    I just want to be spot on this time around and not make any mistakes, like i did the first time when i was given too much wrong info.
     
  19. Falcon

    Falcon

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    hmm not familiar with using sea sand so cant comment there but as long as you collect from below the low tide line and add it to the tank quickly it should be fine.

    adding new live rock will definitely have die off as a result of the shipping process,why are you rushing? let the two systems run simultaneously IMO until the new one is ready for livestock
     
  20. Kunhardt

    Kunhardt Thread Starter

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    lol dont suppose there is much sea sand in vereeniging :lol:

    Not that i am in a hurry, last thing i want to do is rush and make a stuff up, just not sure where i can place my existing tank in the mean time as the new one will take its place in the lounge.

    May have to move it upstairs...and the idea of moving it up there fulled with water etc scares me. :p
     
  21. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    I agree with Falcon, run both simultaniously. Move something else out the way and put them next to each other - it's only for a month :p
     
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