My Boyu in training

Discussion in 'Nano Tanks' started by shawn5643, 21 Feb 2012.

  1. shawn5643

    shawn5643

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    Hi All.

    I started my tank about 2 1/2 weeks ago.

    Specs are:

    Boyu MT-50
    80 litre capacity
    3 chambers in the back
    1 x Boyu powerhead 1000l/ph
    1 x 24Watt PL Combo lighting
    1 x Sun Sun blower
    4 kg Live Rock - Will up that to about 8kgs come payday

    Using NSW and Natural Sea Sand
    (Water from 2 Oceans and sand collected between Big Bay and Melkbos,
    collected at low tide and looks clean and has reasonable life forms)

    Here are some pics after 1 week.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Now the question time!

    1. Filtration.
    In the 3 chambers I have the following:
    Chamber 1 - Live rock rubble and filter floss
    Chamber 2 - Charcoal, bio-balls and ceramic rings
    Chamber 3 - Powerhead/return pump.

    I intend removing the bio-balls and ceramic rings and replacing with a Boyu 308 skimmer, as it seems to be the only one that will fit in this compartment. Am I on the right track? I do not want to alter the "neatness" of the tank so I do not want external plumbing or appliances.

    Will this filtration be adequate as my intent is to keep 2 x clowns, 1 or 2 x gobies, CUC, mushrooms, zoas and 2 or 3 sps's (Xenia, kenya tree, ??????)

    Should I get a more powerfull pump? Turnover is slightly more that 10x per hour.

    2. Lighting.

    The tank comes standard with 1 x 24W PL Combo tube (blue/white). I realise this is not ideal and will either add another 24W PL Combo, or add 2 separate lights, 1 x actinic & one white.

    I think the easier solution will be to add another Combo, however, if I do add 2 separate tubes what strength do you recommend?

    3. Heat buildup.
    Our house gets EXTREMELY hot (Brackenfell;) as it faces the sun full on the entire day.
    Temps were hovering around 29-31degrees, untill I installed 2 x 80mm PC fans into the feeding flap portion of the hood. One blows directly onto the water and one blows outward. After testing, this drops my temp by 5 degrees over a 4 hour period. Temps are now between 25-27 degrees.

    Will post photo's of this DIY as it looks quite neat and not "stuck on".

    4. Substrate.
    I went to do a bit of window shopping at Sam's new store in Brackenfell over the weekend and had a little chat. But after that I was a bit confused. He almost did a backflip when I mentioned that I was using Natural Sea Sand. Now I have read up a good amount on the different substrates and feel that this is not such a bad thing. However, now is the time if I want to change the substrate to Aragonite, before adding any livestock. He is using a very coarse type of Aragonite in his display tanks and I quite like the look of it as it might not get blown around as much as the "sugar fine" Aragalife. Your thoughts please.

    5. Parameters
    So far I do not know.
    Will get test kits this weekend or next as I am only cycling the live rock for at least 4 weeks.
    Please advise on good value for money kits and what the most important items to check?

    6. Water changes
    I have been doing a weekly 20 liter water change. Siphoned off some diatoms from the surface of the substrate. This should go away when the cycle is complete?
    The live rock that had the mushrooms attached also has a fai amount of algae (GHA?) on it. This is now starting to turn brown and looks like it is busy dying?

    7. Hitchhikers
    I have seen about 5 bristleworms crawl around on the liverock, also 2-3 small snails that came out of the woodwork. A couple of days ago a tiny white starfish also miraculously appeared. It looks exactly like the rock pool starfish (5 sided and not five legged if you know what I mean) you get in the local tidal pools.
    A funny thingie has attached itself to one of the rocks as well, it looks like a transparent 5 sided jelly bubble, about 5mm big?

    Are these hitchikers safe to keep?

    Thank you in advance for your help and big up to MASA being so informative!:yeahdude:
     
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  3. NickW

    NickW

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    Hey Shaun,

    Welcome to MASA,

    I am still a newbie so i can not answer all your questions with success, hopefully some of the experts can attempt.

    I have a Boyu Tl 550 (week 3 into the cycle)

    THe only thing i can really comment on is your water changes of 20l on a 80l setup. I would think that is to much, most people reccomend between 10 and 15% weekly. Also i have been told that is not neccesary to do water changes while the tank is cycling.

    Would like to see the mod you ahve done with the pc fans as i am faced with the same overheating problem and looking for a solution, or maybe it will jsut be easier to buy a chiller but can be costly.

    Goodluck with the tank :)
     
  4. shawn5643

    shawn5643 Thread Starter

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    Hi Nick.

    Thanks for the reply.

    My thinking with the large water changes was to "flush" as much of the dying bacteria from the Live Rock as possible out of the system. I think it has helped as the GHA has started dying off?

    From this week I will only change 10% weekly untill the cycle ends.

    I will post images of the fan fitment tomorrow, total cost was R100 so I think for a bit of time spent, it was well worth the effort.

    Cheers.
     
  5. Arries

    Arries

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    Hi Shawn.Welcome to MASA..
    Im no expert but i can give u some advise as i also have a nano.
    Ill def add the Pl-combo as the other t5's wount fut the tank..With that ull be able to keep softies and the majority of LPS..dont know if SPS will last..Xenia and Kenyan Tree are softies..
    Get urself Salifert kits...Very accurate and the dont cost a arm and a leg..Get PH,KH/ALK,CA,MG,NO3 and PO4...those are the basic ones...
    As for the hitch hikers bristleworms are ok..very good cleaners..The star fish i would not trust around corals..And that jelly thingy ur talking about sounds like Aptasia..Get rid of it asap..Maby post a pic if u can so we can confirm..The snails would also need a pic to tell if the will be reef safe..
    For the filtration the boyu skimmer will be fine..Not the best but its better than nothing..Just put it as high up in the chamber as u can with the cup extended as far as possible then adjust the waterlevel..I had one and takes a while to get them to skim rite..Also add some purigen an phosguard as it helps alot with water quality..
    Dont go with super fine substrate as it gets blown away and just becomes a hassle...Normal Fine substrate would do the job..The thing with Natural Sea Sand is that u dont know what parasites and stuff is in the sand...So it is kind of a risky option..
    Anyway tank is looking good sofar..Goodluck and ask if u need to know anything...Someone will always have a answer for u..
     
  6. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    Did you read the link on starting a marine tank? If not, check it out in my signature ;)
     
  7. shawn5643

    shawn5643 Thread Starter

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    Thanks for the reply Tobes.

    I have read your link - very informative thank you.
    Always nice to get feedback from fellow enthusiasts.

    Evaporated water gets replaced every 3rd day with RO water, I have made a mark on the side of the tank to check.

    My natural sea sand is almost pure white with small black speckles, gives the tank a very bright look.

    Unfortunately I only have a "mik and druk" camera so I am really struggling to get a good closeup of the "jelly bug", but will post one soon as my friend is coming over with his proper kit.

    Cheers
     
  8. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    Just remember that a petshop will tell you not to use sea sand as he will lose a sale on substrate. If you're happy with it, then keep it. I used natural sea sand in both of my previous setups DSB's - collected from Umdloti in KZN - nice and fine sand.
     
  9. shawn5643

    shawn5643 Thread Starter

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    Hi guys.

    Attached are the pictures of the fan install. I only managed to cut the one hole properly then the holesaw broke! Will do the other hole properly tomorrow. Wires will also be neatened up/reroutes over the weekend.
    I have some fine insect screening (aluminium) that I am going to try and form from the inside so that the mesh sits flush with the outside and covers the holes. Might just spray it black after forming to make it look original.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    And here is a proper picture of the little "jelly bug/thingie) that i need feedback on please.

    [​IMG]

    Thanks guys.
     
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