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bringing my 29g back to life

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Davidwillis View Drop Down
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    Posted: April 19 2018 at 2:26pm
I had this tank up and running a few years ago, but I ended up taking it down for a while.  I don't have a lot of time, or money, so this is a very simple tank that I want to run with very low maintenance.

To accomplish this I don't have any live corals (sorry I guess this is not really a reef tank, but I might add some later).  I will be using the Hiatt system (since it worked well for me before).  I am not sure why there are very few people using this system, however last time running this system I did have a hard time keeping corals alive, and my angelfish suffered from HLLE.  I suspect the large amount of carbon could have been the cause of HLLE, and possibly my coral problems due to taking out too many trace elements (but I also had other issues). 


Tank:  29gal

Filtration:  5lbs tri-based activated carbon, with Hiatt right now bacteria.  I also use a canister type filter with filter floss before the carbon which I will change out when it looks like it is getting full, a second canister filter full of crushed coral to help maintain the ph, and a final micron filter to remove any carbon dust before returning it to the tank by way of a protien skimmer (Aquatop Xyclone PS370) used mostly for aeration.

Lighting:  2 HIPARGERO LED Aquarium Light

circulation: 2 Voyager Nano Stream Pump (530 GPH)

Fish: 
2- clown fish
2- Blue Sapphire Damselfish (I know these will probably be problems, but I love the color)
1- Royal Gramma
1- green spotted puffer (he might also be problems, but I really like this fish)



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WildBill View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WildBill Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2018 at 4:29pm
Congrats on bringing the tank back.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 19 2018 at 8:37pm
Thanks.  It is really good to have a tank up again,
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 23 2018 at 10:30am
So far so good.  I have had fish in the tank for 17 days, and still have not seen any algae on the glass to need cleaning.

I tested for nutrients today just to see what they were.

Ammonia- 0
Nitrite - 0
Nitrate - 0
phosphate - 0

I am really surprised this system is not more popular than it is.  However I see they now recommend using sea lab trace element blox

When using Tri Base Pelletized Carbon (TBPC) for your bio media and filtration system, it will absorb trace elements that you add to your aquarium water. By using the Sea Lab Trace Element Blox the needed trace elements are added to the tank automatically. NO measuring and NO worry that your marine animals are not getting the sufficient trace elements they require.

I wonder if that is why I had problems keeping corals alive, and my angelfish suffered from HLLE???

Anyway, so far with just fish, and an anemone it seems to be doing great.  But I might get some trace element blocks...?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WildBill Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 23 2018 at 1:41pm
How long did you cycle the tank?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 23 2018 at 4:12pm
I mixed the saltwater, and added the fish with the "right now" bacteria the next day, (I added the Right now bacteria 5 minutes before adding the fish as per the instructions with the hiatt system).

Edit:  The cycle takes 24 hours, but I never saw any ammonia nitrite or nitrate.



Edited by Davidwillis - April 23 2018 at 4:14pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WildBill Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 23 2018 at 8:44pm
Cool. Never heard of that system.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Wrogers Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 24 2018 at 5:14am
Would love to see pics of this tank in a year. I have read a lot now on this system with mixed reviews. Love reading about things I have not seen or heard of Smile
William Rogers
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 24 2018 at 7:39am
Sure, I will post more pictures.    Like I said in my first post, I have run this system before, and it does work great at keeping the nutrients down, and a clean tank.  My problems before what that my sps corals would not live long, and also my angel fish suffered from HLLE, which has been linked to the use of carbon, but not proven (as far as I know).  

Where did you find places to read about this system?  I tried to see if I could find more information before starting it again, and found very little.  There were a few reviews showing it working, but when they went to a larger system did not continue with it due to the large amount of carbon they would need.  I also saw a lot of people that did not like the system (even though they never used it) because they thought it would not work.  So if you have some good sources, then I would like to read up on it more.   I could not find any new articles, or of anyone still using the system, which is a concern to me.

I do know the bacteria works great at cycling a tank.  The first time I did it, I was very concerned about adding all my fish at one time with a new tank.  But it has worked every time.  This time I even tried it with an anemone (with is more sensitive) and it is doing fine.   I do think I may get the element blox though, or it may die from lack of trace elements (I suspect this is why my sps corals died, but I still don't know).

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Adam Blundell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 24 2018 at 8:39am
Wow, Hiatt system! That's a blast from the past. Not something you hear everyday.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 24 2018 at 1:20pm
I know, I have been out of the loop for a while.  Hopefully I didn't miss some important reason why it is not used anymore (it never was really very popular, but I am not sure why).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Wrogers Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 25 2018 at 12:39pm
Reef 2 reef had some talk about it.. Then the rest I googled. Found more info that way.. I spent a few hrs reading about it, could have spent more.. I read the ones that where or did use it and passed by the ones that where just sharing their opinion...  Proof is in the pudding my Dad always told me.. LOL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 08 2018 at 5:38pm
I noticed some algae showing up on the glass, so I checked my phosphate and nitrate levels:

phosphate 0.37
Nitrate:  Just above zero, but very close to zero.

Now I am wondering why the phosphate level went up so high.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Krazie4Acans Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 09 2018 at 7:27am
It could be old phosphate bound up in the rock or sand, or from food breaking down.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 09 2018 at 7:59pm
I will keep an eye on it and see if it goes up or down.

I also added a little more bacteria to see if that will help.  The skimmer almost mediately started producing foam (not a lot, but more than it was).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 11 2018 at 10:17am
Still going up.... 0.39  I am going to clean out my filters
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 11 2018 at 10:58pm
I found a bunch of rotting food in my filter.  Maybe I need to change it more often.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Davidwillis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 16 2018 at 3:39pm
phosphates are slowing going down after cleaning out the filters.  It is down to 0.33 now.   I guess I need to clean them more often.
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