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  1. welps
    07-11-2010 08:58 PM
    welps
    Great to meet you here!
    I'm Daniel, a 28 year old PhD Student at SFU Surrey, living in Vancouver (Kits). I enjoy reefing and am doing so since late 2009. In my short exposure with reef tanks I learned many dos and don'ts but reading alot definitely helps. I tried some shortcuts but ended up spending more in the long run, so saving up and then buying the good, right thing is key, being cheap led me in the wrong direction so far. There's lots of good, used quality gear online, if new equipment is too expensive. I am very happy with my setups and none has really let me down. My experience is to keep the environment as close to the outdoors as possible: Lights: Halides, a definite yes they are strong and create beautiful wave patterns and reflections just as outside. Corals and water quality do benefit and if possible, get them (for me a must). A single 150W per 24" lenght, no deeper than 25", otherwise higher wattage. I found 10k Ushios to be a good choice for me. Water: Never save on salt, the better the water the more stable the setup and happier your lifestock. I use H2O Ocean, natural, dehydrated seawater (no synthetic stuff). Always use a water filter. I never owned a RoDi filter but the API TAP Water Filter always worked well for me, make sure you get 1 cup/min flow rate otherwise you won't filter properly. Mix it well, and ahead of water change time (1 day). Measure salinity with a refractometer only because of accuracy issues, aim for 1.024-1.025 as outside in the Ocean. Water Movement: Avoid lateral water movement, make it random. I always point a powerhead at the glass so that flow will be chaotic and indirect. Create lower and higher current zones but no area with very low/no flow. I use 3 Koralia 4 powerheads for general water flow and two nano heads for targeted flow in my 90g setup. LR: I use 1.3lb/gallon but light, purous rock for good surface area, no heavy, compact stuff. Place it in the tank in an "air-y" way so that any rock is suspended and free water motion around is possible, so no brick-wall or piling up of LR. Create crevices, overhangs and a structure that allows for things to move around and through it. Any stagnation will cause you trouble. Sandbed: May be troublesome for high flow areas since it gets blown up, but is a plus for aestetics and sand critters, so I keep one. I got aragonite fine white sand (live sand in my case, but optional). 3" works well for me. Nutrient export: my LR takes good care of that, I can see it gas-out processed nutrients after the nitrogen cycle and my elos test kits indicate all is well (Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate). But a good skimmer is a must for aeration and additional nutrient export, I do not want a sump and spacious equipment since the tank is in a small studio, the same place I sleep. I found that the DELTEC MCE600 skimmer is a good choice for my 90g, the MCE300 for smaller tanks is great too. Macroalgae does an ok job as well, I place some caulpera in my display, it grows nice and dense and is hosting my clown fish. It is a great hiding place for live mysis and other food sources but needs to be trimmed in order to stay nice and non-sexual. Temperature: Eheim/EBO Jaeger Heaters are the only ones for me since theyre cheap and very good, fully submersible, well built and comply with GERMAN TUV standards. Ver safe. Cooling is neccessary during summertime, especially with halides. I use fans that blow across the water surface underneath the lamps. Additionally, I pump water through a 40' pvc hose loop submersed in a waterbath in a trash can. Its cheap and works quite well. The lights, fan (small, portable fan/heater from home depot) and water pump are on the same timer, so the water cools down naturally when the lights are off. The water container can be placed in a fridge with the evaporator submersed in the waterbath and a powerhead in it for cirulation, if harsher cooling is required. Maintenance: I change water weekly, about 15%, sometimes every two weeks if I'm too busy. I feed my fish (cleaner wrasse, copperband angelfish, clown fish and blue/yellow tailed damsel) twice a day with marine feast (SF brand), marine pellets and mysis or other small shrimp. I alternate according to my mood. I add 10 drops of Phytofeast once every other day, this stuff is poisenous if too much is added. Cleaning of gear happens every other month.
    General notes follow...

About Me

  • About welps
    Biography
    BSc of Computer Science, 2008
    Location
    Langley, BC
    Interests
    Friends, Electronics, Classic car, Computer Science, Travel, Reef Tanks

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