Stupid things I've done in reefkeeping

Discussion in 'General Discussions and Advice' started by mantisfreak, 26 Apr 2008.

  1. mantisfreak

    mantisfreak

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    I've been doing this hobby for a while now. One thing that I've noted is that most new people entering the hobby thinks that no one else has been this stupid before. Well, you are wrong, wrong, wrong. :)

    I don't even know where to start....I've done so many stupid things.

    BTW.....this is just a condensed list.

    I didn't install drip loops (If you don't know what that is, find out now)
    I wanted a moonlight and thought I could make one with a cheap party light bulb. Blue bulbs were out of stock but they had red. So I thought that would be fine. People older in the hobby will understand this completely.....Let's all say it now.....Sie...Ann...Oh...Bac...Tere....E...Uh.
    I wanted to feed enough so that the flora and fauna in my sandbed didn't starve
    I bought several things that looked pretty before learning their care needs
    I researched and found what I needed, decided it was too expensive, then after 3 or 4 months, went and bought what I knew I should have purchased in the first place, thereby making an expensive hobby even more expensive.
    I darn near burned down my house with myself and my dogs in it

    The truth is, I could go on and on and on.....but it's good to ask questions of people who've been around a while. Sara is quite bright but I'm sure she has some "School of Hard Knocks" stories as well. I'm sure she would rather have you ask her rather than have you learn it the hard way too.
     
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  3. sihaya

    sihaya

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    Heehee... oh man, I don't even know where to start!! I did all kinds of stupid things when I first started! Here's just a few...

    1) used a freshwater heater... it corroded in the salt water, and ended up shocking myself 5 times before I realized what the heck was going on.
    2) bought $100 in "trace elements" I didn't need... and spent a fortune on other "snake oils" before I bothered to actually learn about these animals and their actual needs
    3) didn't think I needed a protein skimmer... had only a canister filter for filtration.
    4) didn't think it mattered that my tank wasn't quite level... ::sigh::
    5) drilled my tank myself with the water and all the animals still in it.
    6) thought aptasia were "cool"
    7) first coral I bought was a carnation coral from a LFS that told me they were "easy to care for"
    8) thought I needed 4 sand sifting stars in a 65g because the same LFS told me I did.
    9) waited till after I lost 5 fish before I actually sat down and read a book...
    10) tried to feed my coral flake food...

    Oy, I'm afraid to go on. LOL Hey, we were all newbies once... ;)
     
  4. sihaya

    sihaya

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    Ok, just a few more...

    11) initially hung my MH light from the ceiling using airline tubing (don't ask)
    12) bought 100 hermit crabs for a 65g tank because someone told me I needed at least 1/gallon
    13) left 20 dead snails in my tank because, when they didn't move for 3 days, I thought they were just still "acclimating"
    14) used a power drill to kill a few aptasia on a piece of live rock before adding it to the tank

    But ok... I'm only admitting these things now because I did them a "long" time ago... long before I actually knew anything. I assure you all, I'm NOT this clueless now... lol Thank god!
     
  5. mantisfreak

    mantisfreak Thread Starter

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    I'm sure there are many other people who have similar things that they cannot believe they did. Come clean....here's your confessional. Whatever you say here will help new people in the hobby.....because as Sara stated, we were all once newbies. This will help them understand that it's better to ask than to be afraid to ask in fear of looking stupid.

    What stupid things have you done?
     
  6. sihaya

    sihaya

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    Yeah, seriously... we all learn from each other. :)
     
  7. Brucemg

    Brucemg

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    Hi
    Designed the sump double check the drawing and doubled checked again, opened a spread sheet and captured the cutting list, took it for cutting, collected the glass, started assembling and was well on the way, silicon cured just to find out that the one pain that separates the skimmer from the dsb was too short by 80mm.I did not check the cutting list cost me a extra R182.00[orignal cost for all glass R700] and I had to cut and clean the silcon.Moral of the story no matter what you do dont take it for granted its correct check and check again.
     
  8. viper357

    viper357 Admin MASA Contributor

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    um, yeah, ok, no comment :tt2:
     
  9. sihaya

    sihaya

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    LOL... ok, ok... it's not quite as bad as it sounds. I drilled the two hooks in the ceiling, but at the time I hadn't given much thought past that. And all I had was airline tubing... so I used that until I got some chain from the hardware store. But actually, I felt a little better after seeing MH lights at a public aquarium in TX being hung with nylon rope... lol
     
  10. Ocean

    Ocean Lazy Sea Slug

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    thoght 80 nitrate was fine as long as i dont tell anybody
    got a candy cane in a 11watts light
    i thought the lfs knew what they were doing(bigges mistake)
     
  11. Quinton

    Quinton Smarty-pants Newbie

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    Fantastic thread mantis! Thanks. Some questions/observations of a newbie to follow:

    I just tired this for the first time recently, but it didn't work very successfully. I essentially used a U tube of airline with a tap at one end to regulate flow. Then placed this in a glass beaker floating in the tank. All very clunky and error prone (the beaker got too full eventually, plummeted to the bottom of the tank and broke!). Do you dudes use the LFS bags? Any detailed descriptions of drip loops most appreciated.

    Another interesting one! I bought two second-hand T5 lighting units recently, one with two whites and a blue, the other with two whites and a red. I've noticed that the algae growth under the red is terrible. Aragonite's gone all brown. Under the blue bulb it's still clean white. So I flung the red. Good to get some confirmation that I wasn't imagining things.
     
  12. Brucemg

    Brucemg

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    Drip Loops as I understand it is a loop in any wiring from your tank, on the outside, as water tends to creep, the loop should be at the lowest point so if water does creep up the wiring and run down the loop actually acts as collection point and the water will form a drip and drop to the floor and not creep up to the power point to cause a short. Correct me if Im wrong please.
     
  13. Matt

    Matt MASA Contributor

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    Quinton: I thought a drip loop was so that water didn't flow to your plug outlet?
     
  14. Quinton

    Quinton Smarty-pants Newbie

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    Yeah - you're right. I was asking about the process of introducing new livestock, and how best to bleed the new water into the old water. Any suggestions? I always seem to struggle with this, and have lost a fish due to my bad practise.
     
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  15. Rory

    Rory Admin MASA Contributor

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    Hehe, you're doing it wrong :p A drip loop is a loop on the electrical connections as others described. Check here: http://www.bestfish.com/tips/031998.html

    As for acclimating I'll usually float the bag closed in the tank for a bit for the temp to equalise. Then if it's a warm day I'll open the bag and fold/roll down the sides (give's the bag a bit of rigidity) and place this in tupperware or something to hold the bag up and place both of these in a bucket. Then you can put a long piece of airline into the tank, and one of those small taps on the end and set it to drip at 1-2 drops per second into the bag. Every now and then you can empty some water out of the bag into the bucket and possibly increase the drip rate.
    You could also pour the fish and water in the bag into the tupperware and then place that in the bigger bucket and then just let it overflow from the smaller container into the bucket.


    That's in theory anyway. Find it easier to float a bag with the sides rolled/folded down (this traps air and keeps the bag afloat) and then every now and then use a syringe or something to put new water into the old water, almost emptying out the bag when it's too full.


    If it's a fish I will pour the bag into a net and then let it go in the tank. If it's a coral I will pick it up and let the water drip off then rinse it a bit with tank water and place in the tank.




    Anyway, number 1 stupidest thing is a toss up between ever listening to the LFS and not having a QT. It hasn't bitten me in the ass yet but it probably will at some point.
     
  16. Warr7207

    Warr7207

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    Doing top-up's with saltwater :p
     
  17. crispin

    crispin

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    oh crap, up till a second ago i still thought aptasia were cool......ok ok time to start listening i'll kill the last fella in my tank. Kanga did tell me to shoot him long ago:( somethimes i have the learning curve of a dead frog.
     
  18. crispin

    crispin

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    ok i think my worst has been doing water changes with RO, or letting mky neighbour near my tank and putting the hose pipe in as top up.....i say think as there are others i have not admitted to yet, i need more couch time with my therapist before that happens
     
  19. Ocean

    Ocean Lazy Sea Slug

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    Ive never done something this big!
     
  20. crispin

    crispin

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    its only as big as the things you compare it to:razz:
     
  21. mantisfreak

    mantisfreak Thread Starter

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    How about, "Well, if some of this supplement is good, then a quadruple dose will be 4 times better"?

    LOL
     
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