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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I'm having a nervous break down and finally decided to start a 75G reef tank. Instead of starting from scratch, I'll be starting with someone's complete setup.. picking it up next saturday..

I have some questions to master reefers here..

Roughly how much LRs would I need? It comes with only 20lb, and I have some in my 12G, and few dead rock pieces standing by. I would like some larger pieces to build up lots of hiding places for fishes.

If I mix base rocks /w live rocks, would it take a while to complete cycling process? Or they should be good enough as long as bio load is low?

Also, I'll be going with all T5s. Not having a good success with MH at the moment on my nano, and I don't really care much about shimmer anymore. This setup has 4 T5s (retro) and it already fills up canopy. It would be tight fit to add two more on this canopy. I'm hoping I could get by with 4 T5s for a while... would this be risky on SPS?

Sump comes with wet/dry filter which uses bio balls. I plan to keep it as is.
 

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I think you'd need to go with at least a 6-bulb T5 set up for SPS, and they need to be fan cooled for optimal operation temp.

I'm excited to see this build. I went over my finances coming up for the next 6 months or so...and a tank is definitely not in the budget any time soon :(
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Well, if I were you I'd be happy as is :D but that's just me. You do have a very nice setup, fully optimized in terms of use of space in both inside and outside of your tank. Things growing like crazy, and your SPS garden is shaping up nicely!

Anyway, the LRs I'll be getting have some green bubble algae. I heard Emerald crab takes care of them. Does anyone have experience with emerald crabs and the bubble algae?

On the way back from Kitchener, I dropped by at Burc's place. Oh my god! Frag tank full of new frags!! I simply couldn't resist and picked up 5 frags... so far so good in my nano..
 

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Haha, I know, when I went out there I couldn't resist and came home with way more than I thought I would have.

My reef is nice........but small......really small.....
 

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congrats on the new tank!

cant wait to see some new pics.

I was wondering how long till you upgraded...lol

BEST OF LUCK

lloydj
 

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Well if you are in need of a new sump.
I know this guy up the road that builds custom acrylic sumps..... ;)


L J
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Well if you are in need of a new sump.
I know this guy up the road that builds custom acrylic sumps..... ;)

L J
Yes of course. I'm getting a 25G sump in this setup which is currently part of the system. However, I don't like the way things are arranged in this sump, so I may need to reconfigure baffles/dividers.
 

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I have 4 t5s on a 55 and the growth is okay; some as fast as my fingernails and some slower. The colours are great, but I've found that some frags I get 'colour up' to a bit more brownish after a while. They could be bleached to start with, but I don't know..

However, I don't run cooling fans or have single reflectors. If you have them and cooling fans imo it wouldn't hurt to try :)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Picked up the tank today. Here's some pictures of dirty tank.

Tanks being cleaned..



Sump tank before cleaning. A little too much salt deposits.



Most difficult part to clean. Those white stuff is tough to get rid of. The space between two plastic pieces in overflow is impossible to clean. Just rinsed that area with lots of water.



Tank cleaned and moved to inside. T5 retro reflectors sitting on the tank. two more will completely fill up the top of the tank, would it be worth the effort and cost?



I think I also need to redo plumbing. I'd like to obtain additional parts too, in order to add a useable refugium section in the sump.
 

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Ops. You are really started..

I would like to see...:D
 

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Well a couple of things your asking and i'll help as much as i can.

It all really depends on what your going to have in your tank, if your looking for mixed reef, things like coral, and fish. with a ok bioload

I would go about 1 to 1.5 lbs of LR per Gallon of water.

Also you may want to look into a sand bed if you are going to do a deep sand bed finer sand is better.

deep sand beds help alot with the filtration of your tank.

and well with a good ammount of LR and Live sand you should have lots of little pods to feed your fish.

The T5s well they should do ok for now. but really MH are the way to go.

Also make sure you let your tank cycle.

I dont know how you moved it but there are ways to move the tank if it was set up and running, to run right away.

1st thing is you will need about 50-60% of the water that was in there.

2nd is start of slow if your going to add rock add it slowly unless its been live in a clean and good running system, even then i would reallly add it slowly to let the tank adjust to the new load

As for the skimmer you want a good skimmer, trust me :) they help a lot

Any other questions i'll try to help.

Rafal,
 

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I have one thing to say about how much live rock a tank should have.. first of all you cant go by weight because the rock i have is very light.. i dig for hours until i find the lightest but fairly large pieces i can find as they are very porous and will be able to sustain 10x the life and bacteria of a dense piece. Also.. If you go out and get 75 pounds of light porous rock your tank will be crammed and then you will run into issues will poor circulation which will eventually lead to a tank crash as waste will build up because no flow will pass through the rock heap. Second is your corals will grow, i made this mistake with my last tank and have made sure to leave plenty of room for my corals to grow because as they grow they will also impede flow in the tank. In my 90 I have about 60 pounds of rock. I took all the rock from my 55 and didnt add any more as it was already enough. Look at my old tank versus my new and tell me which has a better long term survival for growth and flow?

Old 55 gallon ( sure it looked nicer, and more crammed)


90 gallon ( not as full looking but has ability to grow upwards where corals usually head.


this is the 90 when first set up, you get a better idea of how i set up the rock for flow, there is tons of caves.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well a couple of things your asking and i'll help as much as i can.

It all really depends on what your going to have in your tank, if your looking for mixed reef, things like coral, and fish. with a ok bioload

I would go about 1 to 1.5 lbs of LR per Gallon of water.

Also you may want to look into a sand bed if you are going to do a deep sand bed finer sand is better.

deep sand beds help alot with the filtration of your tank.

and well with a good ammount of LR and Live sand you should have lots of little pods to feed your fish.

The T5s well they should do ok for now. but really MH are the way to go.

Also make sure you let your tank cycle.

I dont know how you moved it but there are ways to move the tank if it was set up and running, to run right away.

1st thing is you will need about 50-60% of the water that was in there.

2nd is start of slow if your going to add rock add it slowly unless its been live in a clean and good running system, even then i would reallly add it slowly to let the tank adjust to the new load

As for the skimmer you want a good skimmer, trust me :) they help a lot

Any other questions i'll try to help.

Rafal,
I decided to restart the tank as if it's new, since there weren't much livestock and it was way too far to transport enough tank water. Besides, it was necessary to perform some cleaning to bring the tanks in the shape I'm satisfied with. Sump needed to be reconfigured, and plumbing redone.

I'll be cycling tank before adding livestock. I have the nano still running, and those in there will stay until cycling is completed.

I have Tunze DOC 9010, I hope this is good enough.

I have seen many tanks successfully run with T5HOs. MH is tempting but for heat/color/power consumption T5HO wins.

I have total of ~100lb in rocks, base/dead rocks + live rocks. Should be enough to get started. I'd like to leave some space for fishes to swim.

Thanks for the advices!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I have one thing to say about how much live rock a tank should have.. first of all you cant go by weight because the rock i have is very light.. i dig for hours until i find the lightest but fairly large pieces i can find as they are very porous and will be able to sustain 10x the life and bacteria of a dense piece. Also.. If you go out and get 75 pounds of light porous rock your tank will be crammed and then you will run into issues will poor circulation which will eventually lead to a tank crash as waste will build up because no flow will pass through the rock heap. Second is your corals will grow, i made this mistake with my last tank and have made sure to leave plenty of room for my corals to grow because as they grow they will also impede flow in the tank. In my 90 I have about 60 pounds of rock. I took all the rock from my 55 and didnt add any more as it was already enough. Look at my old tank versus my new and tell me which has a better long term survival for growth and flow?
Yes, I would like to leave room for coral growth and fishes but at the same time build enough caves for water circulation and provide hiding place. How did you manage building the caves with those corals in your tank?? Do you have rocks bonded together with putty to keep them in place?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
looking for ideas

I'm closing in on getting sump ready.. here's my plan now

1. try finding a glass shop in my area to get glass panes cut for divider and baffles in my 25G sump. I've read more about using acrylic plates for baffles, but I got scared when some people's tank shattered due to expansion of acrylic plates.

However, if this costs too much and difficult, I'll use acrylic baffles. Does anyone know a good place in Vaughan/thornhill area to get glasses cut?

2. there's only one drain pipe (standard overflow configuration in AGA tank of this size), and according to the seller, the water flows over the overflow. there's a lot of water that drains back to sump when pump is shut off, and I think it's way too much. I want to cut down on flow so that water flows through the slits in overflow, not over it. So I'm thinking of using Findingnemo's approach, to add two T joints to drive water to 1) refugium and 2) phosban reactor. This way I'll cut down on the flow a bit, and be able to support fuge and phosban reactor with just one pump.

I might even just get needed parts from Home Depot or Lowes. I'm assuming any PVC parts are safe for aquarium.

All fittings will be barbed, but not sure if barbed fittings without fasteners will be safe. Can't find plastic fasteners at Lowes (all metal ones - stainlesssteel, will they corrode?).

The current bulk heads on the tank have1 1/2" and 1" holes on one side, but the barbed end appears to be at least one size smaller, something like 1 1/4" and 3/4". Does this make sense?

3. add some pvc pipe structure to open up space under rocks for animals to hide.. and use less rocks. Base rocks from reefsolutions.com arrived, large and heavy pieces. I think I have enough to get started, together with rocks that came with the tank and my nano.
 

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Yes, I would like to leave room for coral growth and fishes but at the same time build enough caves for water circulation and provide hiding place. How did you manage building the caves with those corals in your tank?? Do you have rocks bonded together with putty to keep them in place?
yeah i used three tubes of epoxy...
 

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Acrylic Baffels shattering???....never heard of it. Send me an email and I will find my glass guys # and address for you.Also remember that a refug works best when the flow and out is very slow.....
I'm closing in on getting sump ready.. here's my plan now

1. try finding a glass shop in my area to get glass panes cut for divider and baffles in my 25G sump. I've read more about using acrylic plates for baffles, but I got scared when some people's tank shattered due to expansion of acrylic plates.

However, if this costs too much and difficult, I'll use acrylic baffles. Does anyone know a good place in Vaughan/thornhill area to get glasses cut?

2. there's only one drain pipe (standard overflow configuration in AGA tank of this size), and according to the seller, the water flows over the overflow. there's a lot of water that drains back to sump when pump is shut off, and I think it's way too much. I want to cut down on flow so that water flows through the slits in overflow, not over it. So I'm thinking of using Findingnemo's approach, to add two T joints to drive water to 1) refugium and 2) phosban reactor. This way I'll cut down on the flow a bit, and be able to support fuge and phosban reactor with just one pump.

I might even just get needed parts from Home Depot or Lowes. I'm assuming any PVC parts are safe for aquarium.

All fittings will be barbed, but not sure if barbed fittings without fasteners will be safe. Can't find plastic fasteners at Lowes (all metal ones - stainlesssteel, will they corrode?).

The current bulk heads on the tank have1 1/2" and 1" holes on one side, but the barbed end appears to be at least one size smaller, something like 1 1/4" and 3/4". Does this make sense?

3. add some pvc pipe structure to open up space under rocks for animals to hide.. and use less rocks. Base rocks from reefsolutions.com arrived, large and heavy pieces. I think I have enough to get started, together with rocks that came with the tank and my nano.
 

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Actually I have a selection of glass and 3/8 acrylic here if you want some baffles cut
Let me know.


lloydj
 
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