On my way!!

Discussion in 'Beginner Discussions' started by Marjolein, 26 May 2009.

  1. Marjolein

    Marjolein

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    Hi
    ok, I have my tank(boyu tl550 130L) and i am going to set it up this weekend. Before anything i have to clean it, but with what? what is save? Do i clean, put sand in and live rock and then fill up with sea water or put plain water in fist and let the system run clean or is it fine just with the sea water? must everything run for 6 weeks?(lights, filter, skimmer ect) Thank you for all the info so far!!!!!!;)
     
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  3. zee

    zee

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    Hello, hoping to see some pics as you go along.This masa family will help you every step of the way and with pics even better.Yes indeed the tank will need to mature before adding any livestock.When you mentioned `plain water` I hope you mean RO water.If you purchasing cured live rock then its best you wait until the water is in or you might loose some good bacteria in the rocks.
     
  4. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Hi Marjolein,

    welcome to MASA if i have not already welcomed you !

    As Zee said, we LOVE pics, so dont be shy !!

    Best thing to clean a tank with IMO is white vinigar and a brand new sponge ....... if there is anything stubborn then use a credit card or razor blade.... but be carefull not to scratch the glass.

    What sand will you be using? Aragonite or Reggies play sand .... if play sand then you need to wash it at least 20 times to get all the nasties out !!

    Best bet IMO is to do the following

    Put RO water into the tank
    Add the Salt and a pump to mix it properly
    Add your heater to the system
    once the water hits a constant 25 or 26 degs
    add the sand and the Live rock
    You can now start tuning in your skimmer and other bits and bobs

    lights.... some say running them during the cycle helps others disagree... remember too much light will feed undesirable algae at this stage ...... i would set them on for 4 hours a day for the first week and increase it slowly until you have your total desired photo period when you start adding things after the cycle time!

    Have you read up on the cycling process??? if not please do, there are many threads in the forum on this. 6 weeks is not a definitive answer, your water parameters will tell you when it it time !! Have you got any test kits yet?

    Also please remember that once your system is ready for a new addition, you can sommer just add 10 fish and a nennie that day ..... basically your filtration needs to catch up... the bacteria numbers need to catch up (OR you will go through a cycle again and may end up killing some of your new inmates)

    the first thing to go in after the cycle is the clean up crew (CUC) they consist of things like hermits and snails..... then you can look at adding csome corals and fish ...... if you are considering a nennie then PLEASE read up about them properly first ... they are extremely demanding about light and water parameters etc ..... a rule of thumb is that a tank should only have a nennie after 9 months of operation....
     
  5. Marjolein

    Marjolein Thread Starter

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    Thank You For All The Info!!!! I Am Going To Buy Allready Mix Water At The Fishpond In Vereeniging. And I Think It Is Gravel That I Am Also Going To Buy There. Aswell The Lr. I Am Going To Buy Test Kits On Saterday Aswell. What Test Kits Do I Need?
     
  6. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    Good advice :thumbup:

    If I may one small step... after mixing the water and salt, let it stand for at least 24 hours (48 would be better) before adding the live rock or live sand. "Dead" rock and sand can be added immediately, as Neil suggested. The reason for this is that freshly made salt water needs some time for all the chemical processes to stabilize, and during the first few hours the salt water can be rather harmful (with e.g. the pH being quite high...)

    Don't use soap. You can use vinegar to rinse it out a few times, and then give it a final rinse with just tap water (or RO water, if you have some to spare).

    I'm sure this is a typo, and that Neil meant to say: "you CAN NOT sommer just add 10 fish ..."

    I'm pretty excited on your behalf - enjoy the ride :thumbup:

    Hennie
     
  7. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    Be careful with "gravel" - you want to use a very fine sand, and NOT crushed coral or any course "gravel"

    To start with, pH, nitrite and ammonia - all of them must be specifically made for salt water, as the fresh water test kits do not give accurate readings in salt water.

    Hennie
     
  8. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    The only thing that I would do different is to first heat up the RO water and then add the salt and circulate for 48hrs before adding the rock and sand - the salt dissolves better in the warmer water.
    Posted via Mobile Device
     
  9. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    SHEEZE ....... Glad you caught that typo....... thanks Hennie
     
  10. Marjolein

    Marjolein Thread Starter

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    Ok, but if i buy allready mix water, must i leave it for 48h still or is it fine to put the sand and LR in? Then the sand, how do i make sure i get the best sand? what is reggies sand? and the other sand? WHY IS GRAVEL NOT THE BEST THING TO USE?
     
  11. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    just to be safe yes, leave if for 48hrs

    Arogonite looks the best ..... but costs an arm and a leg
    Reggies play sand is funny enough bought from reggies ....:lol:.... normal kiddies playsand R40 odd for 20kg ... not as nice as arogonite but not a bad second !

    Gravel ..... IMO looks out of place in a marine setup, but more importanly will not provide a great place for critters to live and will create a detritus trap which will lead to water quality and possibly algae problems !
     
  12. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    It should be OK to add the sand and rock immediately IF the shop has actually mixed the water one ot two days prior to you buying it (else the same would apply...)

    On this topic: Try to make sure that you are actually getting freshly made salt water, and not old water from the shop's tanks. After all, you are paying good money for this, and don't want to get the shop's old (possibly high-nutrient) water whilst paying them for a water change on their own tank :whistling:

    The "best" sand, in my humble opinion, would be real sea sand, collected from around a real reef. This is near impossible, though, so we make do with other alternatives:
    • Aragonite - this is either a mined sand imported from the USA, or a man made artificial sand, consisting of calcium carbonate. The theory is that this sand will dissolve over time, buffering the water and increasing it's calcium content. This sand is VERY EXPENSIVE, and is not (again, in my opinion) worth the cost.
    • Sea sand - is you can get real sea sand, collected from a clean, unpolluted beach, this would probably be the "best" possible option. This sand has rounded particles, which won't harm the critters living in/on it.
    • "Play sand" - this could be "Reggies", or any other commercially available sand sold for use in children's sand pits. The "Reggie's" sand is known to be of a good shape and particle size, and is used in many successful reef tanks. Although it costs a bit, it is probably the most convenient of the options, and is what I would recommend for your use (seeing that you are not close to the ocean, and can thus not easily collect some beach sand...)
    • River sand - a fine river sand, after proper washing, will work as well as the "Reggies" sand, and might be a lot cheaper. Most, unfortunately, are of a darker colour, and people don't like it because of the "looks".
    It is too coure, will trap detritus (allowing it to decompose and release pollutants into the water...), and is too porous to allow for the proper working of a deep sand bed.

    Hope this helps :)

    Hennie
     
  13. Marjolein

    Marjolein Thread Starter

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    If i buy reggies sand how do i wash it? And where can i buy RO water?
     
  14. Sentari

    Sentari

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    While you guys are on this topic of Sand's etc...

    I am going to be setting my tank up soon. And i am getting someone to bring me sea sand from the coast.

    Question is if i setup my tank at this moment could i put water in and live rock and add the sand at a later stage. Also will it be better to use sea sand in my DSB? So i'm stuck between a rock and a hard place :)

    Also could i start off with reggies play sand in my DSB and then the sea sand for my display tank?

    Sorry if i'm hijacking this thread. Just thought it would be a vaild question....
     
  15. Sentari

    Sentari

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    I would suggest washing the sand in RO water which you can get from almost any LFS. Alternatively buy a RO Unit.

    I bought one yesterday and i see it as a GREAT investment towards a marine tank.

    Maybe the Mods can lend a helping hand also and give you some good suggestions.
     
  16. ben lloyd

    ben lloyd

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    HI Marjolein there is a couple of MASA members that live in and around vanderbijlpark they mite help you with ro water but you need to by your own reverse osmosis unit it will save you lots of time and money in the long run.
    To Wash the play sand is easy just rinse it about 1000 times with water in a container i find that it is Best if you wash small quantities at a time.
     
  17. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    I put the sand in a bucket and used the hose pipe on it for ages ..... seemed unnessicary to use RO water..... but if you have plenty RO water available then by all means use it..... i just used it for the final wash.

    Some LFS stock RO water

    RO water is essential for a successful marine tank .... in the long run, an RO machine will pay for itself !
     
  18. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    You can put your water and rock in and add the sand later.

    Be very careful with sea sand you do not collect yourself...... i dont use it so am not the most clued up on this but i know you need to collect it well below the low tide mark and it needs to be away from any obvious pollutants.... I am not aware of any reason why it would not work as a dsb ..... Mixing the two sand types is not a problem !
     
  19. ben lloyd

    ben lloyd

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    you can use clean play sand and sea sand together it will make no difference but if you add sea sand in later your tanks sickle will start all over again.
     
  20. Sentari

    Sentari

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    Thats why i need to plan things properly...

    Or i need to wait 2 weeks...

    oh well they always say the wait is worth it :D
     
  21. ben lloyd

    ben lloyd

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    it's worth it thats for sure Sentari:thumbup:
     
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