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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Yup, it's me again. . . As those of you who have read my last posts may (or may not) remember :D I 'inherited" a 95 gal from my parents and set it up around mother's day (yup UGF and everything)

I have since built a new stand (a very servicable cinder block stand I might add ;) ) and I spent most of last week moving the tank to its new location. Since there was going to be major upheaval I also removed the UGF, added 100 lbs OC sand to supplement to already existing 60 lbs LS. I added 45 lbs HI Rocks (aged almost 5 wks in the sump of an obliging friend). My new red sea protein skimmer will arrive any day now and I can axe the hang on filter! :cool:

Now that you've made it this far we come to my question. :p

I had originally planned to turn this tank into a reef tank, however, my husband has taken this tank over and given me permission to build a reef from scratch :dance:

I was hoping to "age" the HI Rock for my reef in his tank, but since he is opting to keep his tank FO he is also opting to keep his "cool lava rocks" in his tank. Will the possible metal traces that may be left on these lava rocks "poison" the rock I want to use in my reef at a later date?:confused:

BTW these lava rocks have been in my parents FO tanks for 8+ yrs. . . if that matters :D
 

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double cappuccino
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If by "age" you mean "cure" it would be better done in a rubbermaid bin or trash can with heater and powerhead. Barring that, wait until your new tank arrives before you buy it, then use it to cycle the new tank.
 

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if you are referring to HIROCKS, as that's how i read it, those wont do any good for cycling your tank, since they are dry rock with no life on them.

so "aging" them, ie: getting some life on them, should be ok in your husbands tank, but i would be worried about trce metals leaching from the lava rock.

i would just get your new hirock when you are ready, toss it in your tank, and throw in a prawn to introduce some deacying matter, and kick start the cycle. you could pick up a 3 or 4 pound piece of live rock from a local lfs, to introduce some bacteria to the new tank. the mroe you add, the less time it will take for your tank to become established.

bearing in mind, this is only my opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yes Jay, I am referring to the the dry rock you buy from HI Rocks, and yes, I was hoping to give some "life" to them by having them sit in my husband's tank for a year or so (it'll be at least that long, 'cause I wanna do this reef right! :D )

Which brings us back to the original question. . . will I have to worry about trace minerals leaching from the lava rock to the base rock I would purchase from HI ROCKS. . . the lava rocks have been in my parents set up for at least 8 yrs (possibly longer, but I can vouch for 8 yrs. . . I have photographic proof and everythig ;) )

I realize that if no one has been in this situation before the resposes would all more or less be speculation. The best bet would be to get rid of the da*n rocks in the first place, but I am encountering very strong restistance down that path. . . :)
 

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personally i wouldn't trust them.

if you want to get some life on your rocks, get them now, and do as beach bum said, put them in a large rubbermaid garbage can, with some saltwater, and a powerhead, possibly even an airstone, or a powerhead with a venturie hose on it, like the maxi's and hagens.

throw in a prawn, and let them sit for a year :)

look at the new 180 fowlr that casey jsut setup, he cured his rock for 9 months, not sure if it was in a sump or a garbage can, either way, his rock looks gorgeous.

if i had a full year to put some life on dry rock, i'd do the garbage can method. then you wont introduce tons of algae to the rock, since there will be no light, and you wont introduce tons of phospahtes and nutrients from uneaten food, detritus, etc.. i'd jsut feed the tank a prawn once a week or everyother week, to keep all the bacteria thriving.

tosing in one piece of live rock from an lfs will help spread life forms to the other rocks, and possibly corraline. but corraline may require light, not sure on that.

either way, i would not put them in the tank with the red lava rocks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
hmmmmm. . . it never occured to me to use a garbage can (but DUH!). . . If I am planning on letting the rocks sit for a year or so do I have to use a special garbage can? If I am "feeding" the rocks a shrimp every week or so and have air and water movement supplied (any guidelines to how much?) do I also have to do water changes and such? How about testing? is it needed, if so how often (I suppose that my test results would dictate the need for a water chage though huh? :D )
 

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Nemo's Chamber Boy
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not answering the water change thing, but as for aging the rock in a garbage can, any rubbermade type can should work. if you take time to visit some of your local shops, you might see if they will cut you a deal on the small live rock rubble at the bottom of their tanks. really nobody buys it except to mount frags on, and by throwing in a few pounds form a few stores along with your hirocks you will get the critters working for fairly cheap.


i would say for water quality, just make sure to top off the can occasionally if you have the lid off for light purposes, and maybe every couple weeks test for ammonia and nitrite and if you get readings after the initial cycle, just do some water changes and back off for a week on the feedings.

you can get a pretty cheap flourescent strip light to mount over the can, and just put in a rock with some coraline and let it go to town for a year... that should make for some spectacular rock when the time comes to fish it out.

what a fun idea, maybe i should get 100 lbs of rock working for my next tank.... though who knows when that will be.
 

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I would not use the lava rock!!!!!! I used about 20 lbs as base rock for my tank & I have been having problems with hair algae ever since! (almost a year) I have since found out that lava rock consists of over 60% silica which feeds algae!

LAVA ROCK (RHYOLITE)

I need to tare my whole tank down and replace the lava rock with good base rock then try again? I wish I had read this before I set up my tank!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
dwall,

I checked out the lava rock link. . . none of the rocks described fits the rock in question. . . unless I'm a bonehead (which is a possibility :D )

The rocks I have aren't dense. . . they are big in size, but light to pick up, red in color, and the tomatoe clown refuses to give up the rock he's been "hosting" in for over a year now ;)

These rocks have been in the tank set-up for years with no adverse effect to the tank inhabitants (FO of course!) or excessive algae problems. . .

Since we have decided to leave this tank FO and the plan for "aging" my base rock in a rubbermaid has been formed I think that we will just leave well enough alone. . . the "cool" rocks can stay where they are along with all of their possible contaminants ;)

Thank you everyone for chiming in on this topic, you have, as always, been most helpful! :)
 

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I know there aren't any good pic's of the Rhyolite type Lava Rock but from what I have seen I think it's probably the same! (large red sponge like lot's of small holes)
If it has been in the tank that long without any algae problems you should be ok? I have been going nuts trying to control a hair algae problem! I've been doing a 25% RO/DI water changes every two weeks for the past three months with no results! I picked up a silicate test kit last month & the readings are off the chart!

HERE'S A LINK That made me start thinking of my lava rock as the problem?
 

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Ughhh.. Dinoflagelettes..
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With a year to go before you set the tank up, why not just keep an eye out for someone who is getting out of reefing... I've seen some pretty **** good deals to be had on LR....
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Oh Buzz, I know, I know. . . the only reason I even have the 65 lbs of HI Rock is becaus I got it for $40 off of eBay. . . with shipping I paid less than $65, so I came out a little ahead there. I intend to keep and eye out for a LR bargain (but then, aren't we all :D )

The red rocks were in the tank I inherited from my parents (Just as soon toss 'em, but the tomatoe clown and husband are staunch opposers to the plan.) They are the red sponges, and the Ryolite description fits them best. (Now that it has been mentioned, I remember a bad "algae bloom" that lasted about 2 1/2 yrs or so after they were introduced. . . :rolleyes: )

I've had the tank set up since the first weekend of May and yet to even see a speck of algae. . . which is a bummer since I don't feel comfortable getting tangs or other "grazers" until I have a decent growth. . . :(
 

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Jenn,

I too started out buying the HIROCKs and ended up not using them because I got a good deal on Preimium Fiji from Walt Smith when Flying Fish Express had the 45lbs for $150 shipped. The HIRocks in my opinion were twice as heavy as the fiji and I would have had to mess with getting them cured with live rock. The weight issue was the main reason I ditched the rock but plan on curing it at a later date for a prop system I am setting up.

Earl
 
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