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About WheresTheReef

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    Gaithersburg, MD

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  1. Have you checked the water quality report for your water company to see if they use chloramine? It would be a source of ammonia that maybe wouldn’t show up immediately on a test kit as mentioned by Alan. Standard RODI filters won’t remove chloramine. Have you put water in a clean glass container and performed the same testing after storage? Can you seal your container to eliminate airborne contamination?
  2. They moved to electronic check in at the door of meetings. You can request a card, but not needed.
  3. Pretty cool. You’ll have to give a review and time lapse video. Most videos online don’t really show it in action. I see some value in automated testing, but it only takes me 15-20 minutes to complete it. How often are you going to set it to test? I think this would be even cooler if they could tie it into your dosing system to automatically compensate for fluctuations in demand. For example, if your corals started growing then it would detect that your parameters dropped and increase dosing. If you sell off some coral colonies (or die off) and your demand drops then it could compensate for you.
  4. Your tank is still very young. Tom actually describes in the link below how the nitrogen cycle plays into alkalinity consumption. When my tank was less than a year old it was consuming way more alk than calcium. Then all of a sudden things balanced out. May or may not apply to your situation. https://wamas.org/forums/topic/86043-why-does-a-tank-only-neeed-alkalinity/?do=findComment&comment=740300
  5. Welcome. Your tank looked great. Must've been hard to let it go. Looking forward to seeing you build out another tank.
  6. Just saw in the announcement of our spring meeting that you will be the speaker. Congrats, looking forward to your talk!
  7. Test results can sometimes be deceiving and come back as very low or zero if it’s being taken up by something such as algae. Make sure your power heads are clean as they lose lots of efficiency as algae grows on them. Siphon it out of the tank during water changes. Blow off the rocks with a turkey baster prior to a water change. You’d be surprised how much crap blows off the rocks. Running activated carbon can also help to absorb organics fueling it.
  8. It’s doable. I built a 48”x22” stand for a 40 breeder I had a while back. I used that template, but instead of only one top center brace (blue in pic) I put 2 of them. They were placed 36” apart to support the ends of the tank. I also put a vertical brace in the back to support the horizontal span. That stand was built like a tank and way overbuilt. I wish I had taken pics to share. This is the only one I could find. It was the very first stand I built. Top plywood was 3/4”.
  9. Why are you carbon dosing? It seems counter productive to have to dose nitrates that you are lowering with carbon dosing. IMHO you are doing what I did and are over stripping the tank of nutrients too early on. Carbon dosing is likely the reason why you are going through dinos. I would stop carbon and nitrate dosing and let the tank raise its levels through feeding your fish. Sometimes we add stuff to our tanks with good intentions, but end up doing more harm.
  10. Don’t have a microscope, but feel your pain. It took a long time for my tank to settle in. With dinos I tried lights out, peroxide among other things. Lost most of my corals from the constant stress. I just couldn’t get rid of the dinos. It wasn’t until I read that dinos really take off when your tank is too clean. I had a new tank that I started with dry rock and was running carbon and GFO early on. What worked best and finally did them over was to cut white light out for a month. Blues were run for their full duration. I also stopped doing water changes for 1.5 months. Took carbon and GFO offline. I also siphoned dinos daily into a mesh filter sock in the sump to remove all I saw. Then removed and rinsed off the sock for the next day. Nasty stuff. Some algae started to grow in the tank and eventually outcompeted the dinos. After a month I introduced white lights for 1hr/day and extended their duration over several months. At first the dinos came back when I exceeded 4hrs/day of white light. So I just waited for about 6 months before trying to run whites longer. They didn’t come back. I felt like one thing after another for the first few years of having a tank. Was a real love/hate relationship with the hobby when going through all those types of issues, but finally made it through it all. Hang in there and it will eventually be fun. Have you verified that they are dinos? I found that if I siphoned them out into a bucket during water changes they would clump together on the bottom of the bucket. They are also very stinky and can easily be sucked off the rocks.
  11. The tank is going to run through some ugly algae and bacterial phases. Let it ride a little before adding too much. If you want to add corals then start with some test zoas or some other hardy lps or soft corals. I would resist from buying most sps just yet. Maybe birdsnest would be ok. Acroporas will likely not do well just yet. Some details on the system, or better yet a post in the dedicated tank section would be helpful with people's input.
  12. Nice start. Now relax and let it ride through its cycle and ugly algae stages. What lights are you planning to run over the tank?
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