New Reefer

Discussion in 'New To Reefing' started by mathewaki, Aug 1, 2016.

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  1. mathewaki

    mathewaki Member

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    Hello everyone

    I have been involved with high tech planted tanks for a few years now and have decided to give marine a go.

    I purchased a mini reef 150 and have upgraded the lighting, skimmer, return pump and some plumbing. The tank has 11Kg of LR. ( I will add a picture later....I am at work whilst writing this).

    I filled the tank up 2 days ago using RO water and Red Sea salt....my salinity is currently just under 1.022 but I have read on the Red Sea salt mix that I should aim for a salinity reading of 1.024 is this correct?

    Cycling::: when I purchased everything the LFS gave me a cycling kit from Red Sea called Reef mature pro kit, apparently this kit contains everything needed with detailed instruction on how to exactly cycle my 1st marine tank. I did not purchase this kit it was given to me for free.

    I have read a lot on the cycling process and have read the various different approaches people take to cycle their tanks....So now I am a little confused. The average cycle time that most people do, so I have read is between 6-8 weeks. The Red Sea program gets the cycle done in 21 days if the program is followed correctly.

    Now I am in no rush to cycle my tank and don't mind if it take 6-8 weeks but I have the Red Sea kit and am thinking about using it to cycle my first marine tank.....

    What does everyone think?


    Thanks
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2016
  2. Buddy

    Buddy Member

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    Hey @mathewaki :D
    Any details on the equipment you have? 1.022 is ok for fish, I would bump it up to 1.025 if you are keeping corals. 1.044 is way too high! You want to aim for 1.023 - 1.027. Stability is the most important.
    If you have live rock in there then you don't need anything except patience to cycle. The die off from the rock being in transport from the LFS to your house will start the cycle. Give it a few weeks to complete. In the few tanks I have cycled, I usually wait 3 - 4 weeks before adding anything.
    I have not heard of the Red Sea cycle kit so hopefully someone can chime in.
    Good luck!
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  3. mathewaki

    mathewaki Member

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    Thanks for the reply @Buddy

    Sorry about the typo I meant to say a salinity of 1.024..

    I have the following equipment:

    Mini reef 150
    11Kg of LR
    auto top off
    Marine pure in sump
    JNS CO1 skimmer
    Kessil A160WE Light
    some cheapo 2600 wave maker can't remember the brand (I am at work now).

    And all Red Sea test kits and so on.

    Cheers
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  4. Buddy

    Buddy Member

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    Sounds like a good start. Any stocking plans yet?
  5. mathewaki

    mathewaki Member

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    I am not 100% sure yet....But probably a pair of clowns and a Goby and shrimp pair.
  6. slin1977

    slin1977 Member

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    Welcome to the Reefuge.
    You will need a nitrate test kit to monitor your cycle.
    Depending on your live Rock quality will determine how much nitrate you measure during your cycle.
    Quality rock with good live bacteria might at its peak measure 5ppm nitrate each week and by week 4 0ppm
    You may measure 0 nitrate at week 1- and 50ppm at week 3 and then 20 week 4.

    Enjoy setting up your first marine tank. You'll have a lifetime adventure ahead.
  7. MagicJ

    MagicJ Moderator

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    Hi @mathewaki - welcome to The Reefuge.

    Red Sea’s Reef Mature Pro Kit includes:
    • Nitro Bac – A concentrated blend of nitrifying and de-nitrifying bacteria spores to seed the live rocks, substrate and the bio-media in a new tank.
    • Bacto-Start – A balanced blend of nitrogen and phosphorus components that simulate the natural waste products of an active aquarium, enabling a controlled development of the aerobic and anoxic bacteria.
    • NO3: PO4-X – A unique complex of carbons and other organic bonded elements that are used by anoxic bacteria for the accurate control of algae nutrient (nitrate and phosphate) levels. Prevents nuisance algae and enables control of zooxanthellae for optimum coral growth and coloration
    • KH Coralline Gro – A concentrated marine buffer complex of carbonate buffers & potassium, fortified with the specific minor and trace elements,such as iron, that promote the growth of coralline algae and other beneficial micro-fauna.
    It looks like it has been available for 4+ years but I have not heard much about it - there doesn't look to be anything that would cause any problems although I'm not sure about using a carbon source (NoPox) early in the cycle.
  8. ReeferRob

    ReeferRob Solidarité

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    I use vinegar to cycle tanks, it shortens it considerable according to my testing. Patience is the key to setting up and log term maintenance of a reef system.
  9. IJG3145

    IJG3145 Member

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    In nearly all cases, a brand new tank will take at least 4 weeks to cycle, as a new reefer the longer you leave it the better, although that is hard to do. :) It's really not about getting the bacteria growing, it's more about the two key types of bacteria reaching equilibrium after peaks & troughs where one dies and the other flourishes.

    Keep in mind that a cycled tank is a long way from an established or stable tank. There are things you shouldn't put in there for at least 6 months.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2016
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  10. mathewaki

    mathewaki Member

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    Thanks a lot everyone, I have started the cycle using the red sea program yesterday, I will follow it exactly and at the end of the 21 days I will just let it stabalise for another month before adding other livestock.
  11. mathewaki

    mathewaki Member

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    Thanks mate, it's funny for a product that has been around for 4 years and claims to get a tank cycled in 21 days...there is not much info or feedback that I can find from others using the product.

    I will follow the instructions and will see what happens
  12. mathewaki

    mathewaki Member

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    Thanks for your response....what type of things shouldn't go into a tank for at least 6 months?
  13. IJG3145

    IJG3145 Member

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    Unfortunately the list is extensive and too long to even try to list here, although I'll give examples I'm aware of and others might chip in. Really the trick is NOT to impulse buy (bloody hard) and research each purchase before buying. If it's any help, what I do with unplanned purchases where I don't know the species well is this, I tell the LFS that I would like a,b & g but I need 5 minutes to check with the missus.

    I no longer have a missus but everyone understands the need to keep the missus appeased - sorry ladies but it's true :)

    I then sit in my car, log onto somewhere like liveaquaria.com and do some rapid research. :reading

    Things best avoided for first 6 months.
    • All anemone
    • Critters that require natural live food sources. ie: Mandarin Dragonettes, Sea Cucumbers, all Seastars, some snails, abalone, etc...
    • Any fish listed higher than 'easy' at liveaquaria - unless you are experienced with them. .
    • Any creature that requires excellent stability and parameters.

    Some references you might find useful.
    1. Common Beginner Mistakes with Marine Aquariums
    2. Eric Borneman on the cycle
    3. The Things We Got Wrong Thread
    4. 8 Things You Should NEVER Do
    5. The Seven Habits of Highly Successful Newbies

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