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my first reef system

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reefaddict

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
120
Location
ohio
after a month or so of shopping, reading, posting questions and generally being a pain in the neck, my reef tank was delivered and installed today.
it consists of:

125 gal aga tank (drilled twin overflows)
custom cherry cabinet and overhead
icecap430 running 1 72" uri vho super actinic and 1 72" uri vho daylight
2 250 watt 10k blueline mh
custom 40gal sump w/ bioballs(will be changed to LR when ready)
red sea berlin skimmer run by a rio 2100
main pump customsealife ti 1
aquanetics ql25il inline uv sterilizer
water provided by a proline plus 5 stage 50 gpd ro unit
oceanic salt
B-ionic 2 stage buffer system(manual)

livestock:
175 lbs. + of bali LR
1" sand bed
star polyps, leather coral, feather dusters,brain coral will be added tomorrow.

I am also buying a digital camera tomorrow so i can post some pics.

thanks for everyones answers to my newbie questions.
trust me, there will be more to follow!
 

big t

tankless
Joined
Oct 21, 2003
Messages
1,914
Location
Denver
I have a question, did you buy this system used, or is it 'new'? If it is new you should make sure that your water perameters are stable and fully cycled before adding any corals. Just a helpful hint
 

reefaddict

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
120
Location
ohio
first reef

yes it is new.
i have been making ro water all week and it has been salted since wednesday. the lr had cured for about a month at the lhs. the ammonia is 0 the nitrite is 0 hardness is 110 ml/liter the ph is 8.3 specific gravity is 1.223 temp is 78 i figure there is no reason to test for nitrates yet. i wont add fish for a couple weeks depending on the cycle
 

mattseattle

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Joined
Jul 15, 2003
Messages
2,694
Location
Seattle, WA
couple weeks? i would wait a few months before adding fish to let it build up bacteria and to cycle properly. remember that patience is the key to this hobby. you could add your clean up crew in a few weeks but that is the extent of adding occupants to the tank - at least in my opinion.
 

reefaddict

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Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
120
Location
ohio
cycle

i was concerned about cycling also, but my lhs said adding a few corals was ok, they don't place much bio load on the system.
about 20 to 30 pounds of the lr is out of an existing set up.
i will have enough water made in a couple days for 25% water change.
 

mattseattle

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Joined
Jul 15, 2003
Messages
2,694
Location
Seattle, WA
i'd still be careful adding anything right now except maybe the clean up crew.

also, watch tbe berlin skimmer. that was the skimmer i had when i first set up my tank. i had to do daily maintenance to it to get it to even remotely skim. after 2 months i threw it away and bought another one. hopefully you'll have better luck with yours.
 

reefaddict

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
120
Location
ohio
cycle

a couple months? i know traditionally a tank can take up to 8 weeks to cycle. my understanding is that with live rock the cycle can happen faster and the ammonia and nitrite don't spike as high as a "sterile" tank.

as far as filling the tank with livestock, it is going to be a slow process. i bought 5 or 6 small soft corals and that is all this tank will get for at least 2 more weeks. then a fish, maybe a small clean up crew then wait
 

reefaddict

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Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
120
Location
ohio
skimmer

funny you should mention the skimmer. i did have problems with it at first. it wouldn't skim and i had to take apart and found some grease on the venturi opening. after i cleaned that off it started working ok.
 

mattseattle

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Joined
Jul 15, 2003
Messages
2,694
Location
Seattle, WA
yeah, just take it slow adding things. 8 weeks is just for the ammonia cycle. there are other parts of the tank cycling process. algae comes and goes, pods/etc. comes and goes and tons of other things. all part of a tank maturing. my tank is little over a year old and i still see new things happening.
 

jazznreef

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 30, 2003
Messages
219
Location
Seattle/Magnolia
nice system but i agree on the berlin as long as its the classic and not the tall (tall is much better than the classic). i think your tank is too big for a berlin. ive had one and had others in that price range and the berlin performed the worst. in my opinion the turbofloarters are much better at that price and for a few bucks more you can get much better results. you may just want to keep an eye out for an upgrade especially with the size tank you have. my free two cents
 

DonW

R.I.P.
Joined
Dec 15, 2003
Messages
8,753
Location
Tacoma, WA
Re: cycle

reefaddict said:
i was concerned about cycling also, but my lhs said adding a few corals was ok, they don't place much bio load on the system.
about 20 to 30 pounds of the lr is out of an existing set up.
i will have enough water made in a couple days for 25% water change.
I noticed you keep using the term "LHS". Is that local head shop?:lol: Sounds like a cool new project.

Don
 

reefaddict

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
120
Location
ohio
lhs

don,
i have been away from my fish tanks for awhile. during that time i got into another hobby(racing radio controled cars). we use the term "lhs" on the racing forums for local hobby shop. it is just too close to lfs for my simple mind to differentiate. if you watch my posts close enough you will probably find references to other rc stuff that has no reef meaning! :oops:

jazznreef,
my system did not come with any of the boxes for the included equipment. is there an easy way to tell the difference between a classic and a tall berlin?
 

jazznreef

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 30, 2003
Messages
219
Location
Seattle/Magnolia
classic is 1.5 and tall is 3 feet or so. i've owned both. you'll probably want to upgrade either way but i had a lot more luck with the tall. the classic berlin really is a dated design. they've been around for a decade and you really can do a lot better. you should be ok for awhile but chances are good you'll want an upgrade down the road. just something to keep in mind i guess.
 

reefaddict

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
120
Location
ohio
berlin

it is a classic. the guy who put this reef system together for me modifys the skimmer. i do not know what an unmodified one looks like but mine has two 90 degree white pvc elbow joints coming out of the skimmer and two pipes going down into the sump. the LFS(i am a quick learner donw:lol: ) says they do that to reduce the amount of bubbles released into the sump which keeps bubbles out of the main pump.
 

mattseattle

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 15, 2003
Messages
2,694
Location
Seattle, WA
yeah, that's the 2 return lines. that is the standard way to do the classic. what pump is it running?

i'd let it run for a month or so and see how it performs. see how often you have to empty the skimmate container and see what color it is. should be a dark tea looking color with a smell that will knock you over. grossiest stuff :)
 

reefaddict

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
120
Location
ohio
skimmer

Mattseattle,
rio 2100.
i did get some skimmate last night and today. it was foaming over after i fixed it yesterday. i cleaned the cup this morning(it was no where near full i was just keeping it clean). after that 12 or 18 hours of "production" there is nothing being produced now. i have heard that with well cured rock, you won't get much skimmate anyway. is that accurate?
 

reefaddict

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
120
Location
ohio
skimmage

mattseattle,
update: the skimmer is throwing off alot of skimmate now. it looks like it is working like it should. can i add 20 fish now?









just kidding
 
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