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A777flygirl

New to Saltwater, starting 90 gal

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Hello,

I would like to introduce myself.  I had freshwater aquariums growing up and always dreamed of having a saltwater tank.  Now that I am retired (have time) and a little more financially capable, I am giving it a try.

 I ordered an AquaVim 90 gal 3/4 cilinder tank and waiting for delivery.  It is coming with 1,000 gpm SmartSump, Protein skimmer, HO 82W LED lights, WaveMaker and 300W heater.

I bought a koolermax RO-DI, 80 lbs Caribbean life rock and 100 lbs Caribsea live sand.

Anxiously waiting for the tank and praying it will arrive in good condition....

I tried to read as much as possible but still have so many questions....do I have enough rock?  Confused about curing time with life rock and live sand?  Do I turn on everything while curing?

Drew a tank outline and tried to arrange rocks...would have 13 inches of just water up high with what I have now.

I appreciate any and all help and look forward to reading about everyone's tanks and comments.

Thank you!

Karen

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Welcome to the forum. That should be a good start with rock. People cycle tanks different ways. I like using live rock and live sand because dry rock tends to leach phosphates and you get more algae growth in my experience.

Typically when you order live rock there still be some die off of the bacteria and you still will have a cycle.

I run the lights and skimmer during the cycling process and use Dr.Tims one and only cycle starter bacteria. It has mixed reviews but I like to use it as I think it helps and I have zero patience for the cycle process.

One common mistake people make is getting a clean up crew too early in the cycling process. It is normal to get algae and a lot of it during the cycle process And it will die off as the beneficial bacteria start building up.

Congrats on finally getting your dream tank!

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I think 80 lbs would be enough. Although, you should try to arrange them in the tank before you fill it up. With the dimensions of the tank and overflows, you might notice the structure will change.

 

Also, I usually turn everything on inside of the aquarium. Shouldn't be a problem.

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I've had good look with Bio-Spira for a quick cycle. Looking forward to seeing more, because a 3/4 cylinder tank sounds ultra cool! :cool:

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Here is the tank unpacked and put on the stand.  No instructions so had to figure out what is what and call AquaVim to better understand how it is supposed to be set up.  Did a leak test in sump and 15 gallon leak test in main tank.  Is that enough?

Leak at bulkhead fixed...was not cleaned well enough around gaskets....

The pump did not fit in the sump compartment.  Trimmed the intake cover...

Next need to plumb below tank to sump..

20170422_131109_resized.jpg

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That is a gorgeous tank and stand. I'd love one for seahorses.. Sounds like you got it decked out for a full reef though. Congrats!!

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Welcome!

 

Beautiful tank! I always loved 90 gal due to its stability, makes life easier than starting small IMO

 

As far as your leak test goes, as long as your bulkheads are tested you should be good, but I'd still probably fill with RODI before mixing salt for a final verification and run your pumps to check all your plumbing.

 

As far as rock is concerned, the more the better in the long run but there are many methods of bacteria management that can support less rock work.

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3 hours ago, Blue Z Reef said:

Welcome!

 

Beautiful tank! I always loved 90 gal due to its stability, makes life easier than starting small IMO

 

As far as your leak test goes, as long as your bulkheads are tested you should be good, but I'd still probably fill with RODI before mixing salt for a final verification and run your pumps to check all your plumbing.

 

As far as rock is concerned, the more the better in the long run but there are many methods of bacteria management that can support less rock work.

Second this advice.  Also agree - really beautiful tank! Do you have stocking plans for it yet?

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Do you currently have your live rock in saltwater with a pump running in it? The rock looks dried out in the photo you posted.

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The rock is Caribsea Life Rock.   My understanding is that it is sprayed with bacteria infused into the coating on the rock that "activates" when added to water.  I like the mature, purple color and am worried about dealing with "hitch hikers" I read about on live rock.  I also bought the Caribsea live sand.  I am new...and hoping these will be enough to start the curing needed to support a reef tank.  

Any advise or comments are greatly appreciated.

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Stocking plans....I have been totally amazed looking at the gorgous reef tank pictures and already feel obsessed with coral. 

I love angel fish and know it is risky with coral but hoping a coral beauty angelfish might work.

Hoping for clown fish and a mandarin.

Princess damsel fish and wrasse...

Is there a way to know how many /what size your tank can support?  

I really appreciate advise.

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it's a good thing you feel obsessed as their is a ton of reading and learning involved with reef tanks. I have seen coral beauties in tanks with mostly soft coral, i have heard they can nip at harder corals. I want to get a mandarin as well but even though I have had LFS owners tell me "oh yeah, they can eat pellets" everything I have ever read says that most starve to death if you don't have a mature tank with lots of copapods.
since I don't have that yet, i bought a t-shirt with a mandarin on it instead :)

what kind of skimmer do you have?

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk

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I got an Aquavim AV-1000 hang on the back skimmer with the tank. It was recommended by the Aquavim salesman as I was trying to get all set up for saltwater and I am so new.

I thought I should start with soft coral.  I think there are some really beautiful ones and perhaps I will find enough to satisfy my obsession. :)  

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I need to readmore about skimmers...I still don't understand them....but I keep getting distracted looking at the beautiful pictures of fish and coral

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6 hours ago, pdxmonkeyboy said:

it's a good thing you feel obsessed as their is a ton of reading and learning involved with reef tanks. I have seen coral beauties in tanks with mostly soft coral, i have heard they can nip at harder corals. I want to get a mandarin as well but even though I have had LFS owners tell me "oh yeah, they can eat pellets" everything I have ever read says that most starve to death if you don't have a mature tank with lots of copapods.
since I don't have that yet, i bought a t-shirt with a mandarin on it instead :)

what kind of skimmer do you have?

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
 

Indeed.  I was going to mention this issue when I saw a mandarin on your list.  I can be difficult to provide enough food for them (copepods) in a new tank so it would not be the first thing I would try and add.  It helps to either run a refugium or create a "pod house" in your tank to help boost the population if you do eventually add one. I have seen some take frozen food but that seems to be the exception.  They are also very slow, deliberate eaters so can be out-competed for food by other fish even if they do learn to eat prepared foods - thus a starvation risk.  All that being said, they are wonderful fish and many of the folk on here have kept them successfully... just need to be aware of the limitations/requirements.

I have kept many dwarf angels who were well behaved around SPS but it is always a bit of a risk.  You can increase your likelihood of success by trying to find one that is already in a system and has a track record.  Of course, that takes quite a bit of patience... something that comes into play often in reef keeping!

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I tried a coral beauty once...then it nipped some SPS to death, so I traded it in.  But coral beauty's and flame angels are some of my favorites 

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Thank you for the skimmer info!

I have some time before the tank will be ready for any fish and will start with coral once comfortably cured so the coral beauty will have to swim in my dreams until all is ready and more research is done.  I understand the order you introduce things needs to be taken into consideration as well?

 

 

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Progress seems to move at a snails pace.   :)

The floor structure supporting the tank became a question and soooo a little footing was in order.  

I haven't seen much discussion on house support structure on any forums which seems strange especially given there are so many people with much bigger tanks than mine.

Attach a pic of the new reinforcement. 

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Well...finally got plumbing done and started filling!

RODI is sooooo slow...

Didn't know it would be this complicated but an interesting and fun journey. :)

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