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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I started a 55g tank 5 weeks ago, I really wasn't sure what my end result was going to be. After lots of research and seeing pics of tanks, I know now what i would like, but am not sure if I have the right tank for it. I definetly know I want a bigger one someday, but I am stuck with this for now. I want to do a reef with soft coral. Right now I have 90lbs of live rock, 2 percula clowns and two damsels. I also have an acua remora protein skimmer and a marineland powerfilter. For lighting I have a Nova Extreme 8x54 light on a timer and three maxi jet1200 powerheads on the wavemaker powerstrip. I was going to get a sump, but do not want to drill holes and really do not have the space with the stand and location. I was hoping for some feedback on this setup working. The local fish store I go to told me it would be ok, but I'm not sure I trust him yet.
 

· REEFer In Progress
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Welcome to TRT, it sounds like you have a good start. You dont have to have a sump, although they are beneficial. I think you could have a great reef with the equipment you have now, just make sure you have enough flow so detrius (fish waste) doesnt build up under your rock piles! Ask away, 99% of the time someone will be able to answer your question(s)!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
How long should I wait before adding some coral? Also i have been getting little purple spots on the rock, which I believe is coraline algea, but some of it turns black after a few days, is this something to worry about during cycling?
 

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the only reason i ask is your ammonia and nitrites should be 0 otherwise your inhabitants might not make it very long. Ammonia and Nitrites are extreamly toxic to mairne life.
 

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the only reason i ask is your ammonia and nitrites should be 0 otherwise your inhabitants might not make it very long. Ammonia and Nitrites are extreamly toxic to mairne life.
Very true, nitRATES are not good, but not all that horrible if theyre not extremly high. nitRITES on the other hand are NOT GOOD lol, they should always be at 0. Its possible, since your nitrites and ammonia are high, that you tank is still cycling. nitRATES, kill your inhabintants slowly, nitRITES will kill very quickly...
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Live rock was not from an established tank. The store I bought it from gave it to me in a Fiji box with wet newspaper in it. This is one reason why I'm not sure about the store I have been going to. When I first got the rock, I really had no clue what I was doing and he said that after a week it would be ok to get a few starter fish. They seem to be doing good. They eat really good, they practically eat out of my hand. The ammonia and nitrate have been very close to zero the last week and nitrite I didn't think was too bad unless it went up more. A few days ago I did about a 10% water change and I'm going to check everything tonight.
 

· Marine Addict: 75g Habit
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he said that after a week it would be ok to get a few starter fish
he's not off to a good start in my book. no living creature is a "starter" item. a week is way to soon to add fish or anything else....but what's done is done.

do frequent (daily) 20% water changes until you get the ammo and nitrite to 0 and STAYS there. another emergency measure would be to buy a bottle of bacteria and add it to the tank with water changes. this will help get the cycle over faster.

best of luck and keep us posted on the progress....

with the equipment you have, a little patience, and the willingness to ask questions here (TRT has helped me more than any local fish store) you can keep a terrific variety of corals in the set-up. you won't need to drill the tank, i have a 55g and i purchased one of these to move water down to the sump.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Temp 79
Salinity 1.0235
PH 8.2
Ammonia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 0
Calcium 500
dKH 8
Phosphate .5
I'll check again tomorrow or Monday to see if these are stable. I checked phosphate 2x to make sure it was right and got the same result. I thought it would be too soon for fish, but the fish guy said it would be ok. I got them three weeks ago and one died two days later, but the rest seem to be doing well. Today I noticed some green algae starting and a lot more purple coming in. Last week had a lot of brown algae. I did a water change and cleaned the glass. Also bought 10 snails and 15 hermits. Protein skimmer seems to be really starting to break in. I didn't get that going until two weeks after I started the tank. I appreciate your help getting started. I think I'm going to drive the extra 10 miles to go to the other store. He has much more of a selection and a sweet reef tank.
Another reason of being nervous of a sump is my 2 year old boy who gets into everything!
 

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Temp 79
Salinity 1.0235
PH 8.2
Ammonia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 0
Calcium 500
dKH 8
Phosphate .5
I'll check again tomorrow or Monday to see if these are stable. I checked phosphate 2x to make sure it was right and got the same result. I thought it would be too soon for fish, but the fish guy said it would be ok. I got them three weeks ago and one died two days later, but the rest seem to be doing well. Today I noticed some green algae starting and a lot more purple coming in. Last week had a lot of brown algae. I did a water change and cleaned the glass. Also bought 10 snails and 15 hermits. Protein skimmer seems to be really starting to break in. I didn't get that going until two weeks after I started the tank. I appreciate your help getting started. I think I'm going to drive the extra 10 miles to go to the other store. He has much more of a selection and a sweet reef tank.
Another reason of being nervous of a sump is my 2 year old boy who gets into everything!
well from these reading if they are stable i would say your tank may have cycled already. However that doesn't mean it is a mature tank, with that said I wouldn't add anymore fish for at least a month. That brown alage was probably the diatom bloom which is kinda at the end of the cycle. I would definitly go to another LFS. I have 4 by me and 2 are totally this way in that they just want to make money, which i think is sad. Anyway I'm glad things are working out anymore questions just ask away everyone here will really try to help. Good Luck!!:cool:

PS

Stay on top of water changes it will help a lot if there is some sort of mini-cycle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Any recommendations on good, but not super expensive RO setup. I will be getting one soon, but I don't want to spend a ton of money. I don't want to get a bad one either. The guy @ the fish store, I will no longer go to, also told me that tap water is fine to use, but I knew better from my freshwater tank experiences.
 

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I think that the amount of fish you have in there is fine, you said one of them died so you have 3 right? I think the equipment you have is fine too. I ran a 55 gallon reef with a huge bio load (see avatar) on HOB stuff. I would wait till all your levels are 0. Why take the chance. This hobby is all about patience.

Another thing to consider is where you are getting info. This board is great. Make sure that if you are thinking about advise, know how long the source has been in the hobby and what experience they have FIRST HAND. I have been doing this for quite a while, and do it for a living, and I have seen people in the hobby for a couple of months giving tips and they don't fully understand the nitrogen cycle..........its sad, and not fair to the noobie. Everyone has an opinion and there are 100's of different ways to do things........and most are right, but you need to find what is right for you.

FWIW
Brian
 
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