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Old 03/14/2018, 10:27 PM   #1
Sil40
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Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 6
SilForty's Red Sea Max 130. Slow build.

Greetings everyone. After a couple years without a tank, I'm back in the hobby. My first saltwater tank was a JBJ Biocube 28 which I decided to break down and sell when I needed to move across the country. Because I had been moving so much, I decided that it was best to not have a tank. Now that I'm back in one place and finally settled, I decided it was time to get back into the hobby.

I snagged a used Red Sea Max 130D used off of the classifieds. It was left in a house this guy purchased and had no clue how to maintain. Topping off the water with tap water led to a HUGE algae bloom overtaking every surface of the tank and the bristle worm population had reached epic proportions. He just wanted the thing gone and was offering $200 for the whole deal. I basically bought the tank sight unseen. When I got there, I found out that the hood lights had been gutted and replaced with a 120W LED Current Ramp Timer Pro system, and it also came with a Deltec MCE600 protein skimmer, a full bucket of instant ocean reef crystals, a Hanna phosphate checker along with a new box of reagents, a brand new refractometer, and a bunch of other various odds and ends.

I ended up re-homing the Bangaii Cardinal and the Ocellaris Clownfish who were inhabiting the tank to a good friend on the promise of some zoa frags from him later on. I decided that a ground up approach was the only way to tackle this neglected monstrosity of a tank. I turfed the small chunk of live rock and live sand that was in the tank and began to scrub. Seriously, I wish I took a before photo of the tank. I spent a solid two days with water, vinegar, a sponge and a razor blade.

I picked up 30 pounds of cured live rock from a reefer who was breaking down their tank and have begun the cycle for $5 a pound (the same cost that all my LFS and fellow hobbyists were selling dry rock for). Living in Canada means that I just don't have the same access to all those amazing online deals I always see advertised. I picked off all the visible bristle worms as I transferred over the rock, and among the hitchhikers that I didn't evict, I noted a pair of little bristle stars and a couple of what I believe to be button polyps.

Being that I decided to go back to University last year and finish my degree means that right now I have more time than money, which is fine. I am a very patient person when I need to be. This thread will likely not be updated very frequently, simply because nothing will be happening with the tank all that often. As they say, nothing good happens in a reef tank fast!


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Old 03/15/2018, 05:40 PM   #2
Sil40
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Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 6
Since I'm currently suffering from the plague, I haven't bothered with aquascaping and instead just dumped all the live rock into my tank. Once I've recovered from this lingering cold, I'll do something pretty with all the rock.












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Old 03/16/2018, 12:28 PM   #3
Sil40
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Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: British Columbia
Posts: 6
I had placed a small piece of shrimp in the tank the other day, and yesterday I had an ammonia spike. According to the test kit, it hit somewhere between 0.25ppm and 0.50ppm. This morning's tests showed no ammonia and no nitrites, but nitrates are now up to about 10ppm. Having never cycled with 100% live rock before, this seems too fast and I'm hesitant about considering the tank cycled (For comparison, my last tank was cycled with all dry rock and a couple pieces of live rubble. The tank sat for somewhere between 8 and 10 weeks before I added a clean up crew, then sat for another 6 weeks before I added my first fish).

The tank will likely not see a clean up crew until mid April anyways (hopefully the algae doesn't get too insane before then). I have to wait for classes and exams to be over and I've found a job for the summer.


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Old 03/16/2018, 01:39 PM   #4
murphreef
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: simi valley
Posts: 3,202
I always start a tank with LS and LR. Most of them cycle super fast and you can throw a few fish in within a week. As far as delicate fish like tangs etc not so fast.

You can throw some soft corals in right away and some hardy LPS. Wait a few months for more delicate corals if you plan on going that route.

GL with it all!


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Current Tank Info: 25G cube (finally back in the hobby in a small way)
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