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Mike's Reefer 350

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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Vilante » Mon 28 Nov, 2016 12:40 pm

I haven't posted in a while, been a but of a slow time on the reef.

Have been struggling with GHA and red algae and have had some corals rescinding and couldn't figure out why.

I have a cheaper RO filter which I bought with a TDS stick nearly a year ago. The other day I thought, the only thing I haven't done is double check my RO. Turns out that stick meter must be faulty, and I have TDS out the wazoo. FFS!!

I bit the bullet and bought a proper setup from PSI. Hopefully with a decent water change regime over the holiday's I'll be on track and a bit more buoyant come the new year.
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Vilante » Tue 24 Jan, 2017 1:42 pm

Finally getting on top of my GHA (that went a while ago) and red algae problems. Still some algae hanging around but it's reduced massively.

I lost my hawkfish which really sucks. I had it in a QT with some other fish which didn't make it through QT and I think it may have been damaged then.

Hopefully I will have more to show off soon as I start to populate further with coral and fish. I need to watch the spending though so it will probably be a slower process in which I'll try to make use of the Sydney frag community :) It's probably a good thing as I think some of my problem has been me rushing stocking.
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Vilante » Sun 02 Apr, 2017 6:03 pm

I haven't updated in a while so here we go :)

The system is going pretty well. I am STILL getting my dosing right but I think I'm pretty close now.

I have introduced a bristle tooth tang and a 6 line wrasse since I last posted. I've also added a decorator urchin which I'm having second thoughts about as it seems to tear the coraline off the rocks.

I did have a chocolate goby sifting the sand but I lost him. Since then I seem to have some diatoms or similar.

I bought a $20 SPS frag which was browned out just to see if I can keep it alive. SPS L plates.

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FTS

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Mushroom town and a beautiful green nem I scored from Greeni :thumb:

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I can't convince the clam to live anywhere beside right in this corner

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Hammer time and some more donated frags thanks to Eyesclosed. Go team free frags!

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The urchin

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Zoas and a nem that's getting too big
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby wayne2.0 » Sun 02 Apr, 2017 6:50 pm

Starting to look like a mature tank now. :thumbsup:
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Vilante » Thu 06 Apr, 2017 11:00 am

wayne2.0 wrote:Starting to look like a mature tank now. :thumbsup:


Thanks Wayne. Hopefully I can get some SPS happening now :)
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Autonomy » Mon 17 Apr, 2017 3:05 am

Tank is looking absolutely amazing!! :-x
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Vilante » Fri 23 Jun, 2017 11:27 am

So, an update after mucho struggles these past couple of months, sad face.

I had a spike in nitrates and things started to look a little sad not long after the posts above. I did a few big water changes. Things kept declining so these are the things I tried and changed over a few months.

More flow - I definitely needed this with only one wavemaker in place. I ended up with 2 x Tunze 6095's I got second hand. There is also a Tunze 6040 and a Jebao Rw-4 (which I'll replace with another 6040 at some stage) I still need to figure out placement of these so I'm experimenting
Removed bio pellets - Someone told me it could be these and to try to remove them
Started Ultimate Aquacare nitrate remover - This brought nitrates down over a few weeks
Tripled the marine pure in the sump - I had one block, now have 2 blocks and a large box of spheres - This will take a few months to take effect
Increased servicing of filter socks and skimmer - Done twice per week now
Added another 12kg of rock to the display - I was going for a sparse rockwork look rather than a wall but I kinda like it with more rock so I'm happy I did it. This will also take a few months to take effect as it's dead rock

In the middle of all this I discovered that when I have a power outage my doser doesn't automatically go back to it's normal settings. It reverts back to the standard setting. So I had a huge drop in alk which obviously wouldn't have helped.

I got a couple of new fish during all this (they were cheap) but both jumped. After speaking with someone in the know, figured it was probably the 6-line or the CB shrimp, so I've sold both of those. I lost one of chromis catching the wrasse, stressed it out too much as it got caught in the trap with the wrasse.

After all of this I've just discovered I seem to have an electrical leakage. I have a ground wire and it fell out of the tank which I was doing the rockwork. I put my hand in and a cut on my finger lit up! So that's this weekend's job, finding the culprit.

It's been a testing time, lost all the corals bar a ric and some shrooms. My nem split so there's 2 of those now. Fish are down to 2 chromis, 2 tang, a coral beauty and a pair of clowns.

I also got an Apex which I need to get the most out of. It's controlling the wavemakers which is nice but I think I should get it controlling auto top off next.

I think the poor times were extended by things dying off slowly. I'd lose a coral and then I'd think everything was fine but I'd lose another and water quality would be effected. I probably should have ripped the bandaid off and got things out of there sooner.

It sounds terrible now that I've typed it all out haha, but I'm still enjoying the tank so looking forward to things improving.
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby pebbles » Fri 23 Jun, 2017 12:30 pm

Hey mike, :wavey:

Sounds like you've turned the corner and things are improving. :crossfingers:

Vilante wrote:I think the poor times were extended by things dying off slowly. I'd lose a coral and then I'd think everything was fine but I'd lose another and water quality would be effected. I probably should have ripped the bandaid off and got things out of there sooner.
.


Yeah you're probably right. :(

When stuffis dying off its easy to get bacterial infections that can be transmitted between corals.
What starts as an isolated problem can become a systemic one especially stuff like rtn, brown jelly etc... I find if you don't get this under control fast, it's quite possible to spread, resulting in death and a mini cycle.

If it makes you feel better most of us have learned this the hard way... :cheers:


HTH
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Vilante » Fri 23 Jun, 2017 12:40 pm

pebbles wrote:If it makes you feel better most of us have learned this the hard way... :cheers:

HTH
Angie


Thanks Ange, I have been telling myself that if it were easy everyone would be doing it, and that I'm only a noob, so to treat it all as a learning experience. Makes me feel better sometimes :devil:
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby MitchD » Fri 23 Jun, 2017 6:26 pm

Sucks to hear the tank's been struggling mate. Things always seem to go wrong all on once in this hobby.
A bit late now seeing you've already added more rock, but have you looked into putting media of some sort into your sump? (Matrix / Siporax)
Could help with biofiltration while keeping the sparse rockwork look you're after.
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Vilante » Sat 24 Jun, 2017 3:13 pm

MitchD wrote:Sucks to hear the tank's been struggling mate. Things always seem to go wrong all on once in this hobby.
A bit late now seeing you've already added more rock, but have you looked into putting media of some sort into your sump? (Matrix / Siporax)
Could help with biofiltration while keeping the sparse rockwork look you're after.


Thanks Mitch for the advice. I have a heap of Marine Pure in there which is the same Siporax. Hopefully that and the extra live rock give me more of a solid base this time around :)
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Vilante » Wed 12 Jul, 2017 10:55 am

Tank seems to be ticking along ok now. I haven't added much stock but will start to soon.

Have changed over to dosing Randy's. I was dosing an extraordinary amount of the powdered version of Ultimate Aquacare alk solution before this. I've switched to Randy's (with chems from 100% Reef Safe) and followed the instructions and bam, it's been 2 weeks and everything is stable using the recommended 27ml of both solutions. Not sure what I was doing wrong with the UA stuff, but could have been part of the crash. I was also using the Red Sea pro test kit and I'm sure it was wrong. I bought the Aquaforest one a couple of weeks back and it showed I was quite high, around 9dkh. So I'm relying on the Aquaforest which tests similar numbers to Salifert. pH has been low regardless though, so

Now I'm concentrating on low pH. It's 7.8 overnight and 8.05 during the day.

Things people have suggested:

- Salinity - Have double checked the refractometer and it's stable at 1.025
- Fresh air in the room - This could be a problem, so I'm installing a fresh air line to the skimmer, hopefully that helps
- No fuge - unfortunately no room for one, but I could look at trying a cheato reactor

It doesn't stop! Have started to grow some coraline again and the few corals I have in there are starting to grow so hopefully things continue to get back on track.

I'm still liking the look of the extra rock, need to post some pics.
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby pebbles » Wed 12 Jul, 2017 1:12 pm

:wavey: hi mike,

Don't fret over the pH. Mines down ATM too. If your alk is adequate, it's possible that there's not enough ventilation where the tank sits. Its been really chilly lately, so it's easy to forego the strong airflow in the room you otherwise might have.


HTH
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Vilante » Wed 12 Jul, 2017 5:01 pm

pebbles wrote::wavey: hi mike,

Don't fret over the pH. Mines down ATM too. If your alk is adequate, it's possible that there's not enough ventilation where the tank sits. Its been really chilly lately, so it's easy to forego the strong airflow in the room you otherwise might have.


HTH


Hi :)

Thanks for the advice! Yes we are in a unit so it's pretty blocked up as far as air flow is concerned, I think that's the main problem.
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Vilante » Tue 18 Jul, 2017 4:46 pm

The fresh air line has helped a little but no massive change. It seems to have cured the huge swing a little.

I'm just going to concentrate on trying to keep things stable and start adding some coral again.

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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby damienbuckley » Mon 31 Jul, 2017 7:03 pm

Hey Mika. I have a 250. Following along!

Tanks looks great.
“That’s been one of my mantras — focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex; you have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple.”

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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby Vilante » Tue 01 Aug, 2017 2:31 pm

damienbuckley wrote:Hey Mika. I have a 250. Following along!

Tanks looks great.


Cheers. I'm currently building a chaeto reactor to see how that goes, and will shortly be introducing a bunch of corals, so will do some updates soon :)
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Re: Mike's Reefer 350

Postby damienbuckley » Tue 01 Aug, 2017 2:55 pm

Vilante wrote:
damienbuckley wrote:Hey Mika. I have a 250. Following along!

Tanks looks great.


Cheers. I'm currently building a chaeto reactor to see how that goes, and will shortly be introducing a bunch of corals, so will do some updates soon :)


Awesome - funny you should mention that. I was looking at these at the weekend and trying to figure out if/how I could fit it into my sump and how to power it:- https://www.aquariumgallery.com.au/prod ... ae-reactor
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