1. Welcome to the shiny new site! Please have a look around and let us know how its working for you. Please note that all returning members will need to reset your passwords to login again. Click on "forgot password" to reset your password. If you still have issues then email us at board@marinecolorado.org Thanks
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Site Upgrade complete! A new version of the forum software has been uploaded. Please let us know if you have any issues. Thanks

JDA Build-Off Competition Entry - 60g MBP&S Cube

Discussion in 'Competition Entries' started by jda123, Mar 9, 2019.

  1. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    Tested some water. Everything is about the same, but got 0 ppb on the Hannah... twice. I am not really happy about this... would prefer between 1 and 3, but that is OK since I have film algae and everything is growing well. I am going to feed more.
  2. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    New Years Eve Pics. This is without any cleaning or any kind of maintenance since the last time that I posted. Elbow grease, a quick siphon and water change most likely tomorrow.

    One of my main takeaways that I guess that I kinda forgot is that even with easier coral, it can take a while for them to get color. It would have been easy to get a supplement, change some parameter or otherwise get impatient, but the ORA German Blue Digi finally is starting to show it's potential, the Forest Fire is just now starting to get some green and the Purple Digi is starting to turn purple from brown. I am happy with the colors in the last pic, but it took six months. Lesson here: patience.

    Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 8.03.13 PM.png Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 8.02.59 PM.png Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 8.00.46 PM.png Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 8.00.59 PM.png Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 8.01.10 PM.png Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 8.02.48 PM.png
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2020
  3. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    Money thoughts for the new year... wasted about $70 in fish that did not make it... and the Random Flow Generator does work, but not well enough at this flow rate. Could have been $90-100 cheaper, or so. I have not lost any coral, so no sunk costs there. 200g of IO will be more than enough for a year... might have some left over.

    No equipment failures, but I used good stuff. I got lucky to find the CaRx used for somewhat cheap - these things are about 20 years old and I had to recondition all of the seals (heat them up and reseat them) and had some elbow grease. These kind of deals can be found if your LFS has a good used section (there are many in town that do).

    If budget were no issue, I would have gotten a Tunze 6095 for $129 on Black Friday and also got an Osmolator ATO. The Tunze on the tank now works fine, but it LARGE. I also wanted a frag of this killer red Anacrapora that I saw, but budget did not allow.
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2019
  4. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    One a livestock note, the whiter/clean rock is a byproduct of the urchins. I scrape coralline on the glass more, but this tank would be nearly all purple if I did not have the pincushions. For people with new tanks who are considering urchins, they are wonderful algae eaters, but the tradeoff is coralline... which you will learn to hate one day anyway. :) IMO, there is nothing better for under $10 than an Atlantic pincushion for algae, but they will not tolerate high N and P, so you need to be on the lower side. I bought hermits with larger shells, so they have not assassinated my astreas - this of oft overlooked when people buy a CUC, but I have found that Atlantic blue legs will not go after snails if they have larger shells already and there is extra food for them to eat. This can save replacement costs too.
  5. SkyShark

    SkyShark Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    I’m being lazy and not looking back through the thread history, but did you buy captive banggai cardinals?
  6. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    Yes. I hope that nobody is importing wild ones anymore with their numbers falling in some places. They are hardy, readily available and not expensive, so I hope that everybody is getting CB ones. So far, mine have no interest in making babies of their own.
  7. SkyShark

    SkyShark Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    Good to hear. I agree 100% unfortunately I still commonly see wild ones in local stores
  8. Kayvon

    Kayvon Amphipod

    I had a question about this tanks parameters. What is the max dkh you’d be comfortable with considering your nutrient levels? I also have a tank with undetectable nitrate levels and close to 0 phosphates. I’m currently at 6.8 dkh but don’t feel comfortable with alk levels that low.
  9. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    ...about there. NSW is 7.0 on average, but from about 6.6 to 7.2 around the world. Typically, I do not sweat alk unless going Ultra Low (below NSW levels) with something like ZeoVit or another "program/system." NSW is not Ultra Low... it is just natural. You can definitely burn SPS tips if you have too low of building blocks, and you do not limit growth by keeping alk low - the skeleton will outgrow the tissue that is supposed to cover it... this is an outgrowth thing, not a die-off thing. People think that they have burnt tips, but most do not unless it is new calcification that out grew the tissue. I have not seen too many real cases of this since people all wanted to dabble in ZeoVit about a decade ago.

    Generally, I am usually happy with any alk between 6 and 8 but prefer to be around 7.
  10. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    A few top-downs because I hurt my shoulder and don't feel like scaping glass. :( This is the tank in all it's ugly with a few diatoms and a bit of cyano in the sand.

    The German Blue Digi is going to grow over the Pink BN soon. Need to scrape glass and do a quick sand vacuum on the surface layer. The snails and crabs are keeping it kinda stirred up, but not enough.

    The forest fire digi has a really nice green skin, but you hardly ever see it with the orange polyps out. Oh well, since I mostly keep acropora, nothing is truly this orange, so it is kinda nice to look at.

    Screen Shot 2020-01-26 at 4.15.13 PM.png
    Screen Shot 2020-01-26 at 4.15.32 PM.png
  11. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    I am going to donate this tank and contents when the contest is over. I hope that I can find a school, hospital or something worthwhile that might want it. If anybody knows of anything or anybody, send me a PM. This is an easy to maintain tank with easy inhabitants. If anybody is friends with Mougey, he might know of a place.
    SkyShark and TheRealChrisBrown like this.
  12. sethsolomon

    sethsolomon Shark M.A.S.C Club Member

    I love all the polyp extension you are getting on your digi's!
  13. MuralReef

    MuralReef Shark Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. MASC Vice-President

    I'm reaching out to Rob about the tank. I'll let you know.
  14. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    Alk at 5.4, Calcium at 375. Going to need to turn the CaRx up a bit - I have not touched it in a few months and corals are larger, so it makes sense. Nitrate is still "clear" and phosphate is a 3 ppb on Hannah Ultra Low.

    Had some more pieces break off... stuff is getting close to the glass.

    Scraped the glass and stuff. Photos tomorrow or in a few days.
    SynDen likes this.
  15. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    Please excuse my really bad photo skills and bad color representation... and lack of glass scraping. Corals are growing nicely.

    I mounted some frags that broke off of the colonies.

    Screen Shot 2020-03-12 at 9.25.59 AM.png
  16. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    One month left... some really bad photos...
    Screen Shot 2020-04-05 at 4.16.16 PM.png Screen Shot 2020-04-05 at 4.16.44 PM.png Screen Shot 2020-04-05 at 4.17.03 PM.png Screen Shot 2020-04-05 at 4.17.15 PM.png Screen Shot 2020-04-05 at 4.17.24 PM.png
    SynDen and TheRealChrisBrown like this.
  17. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    Tested today and I am starting to use a massive amount of carbonate and calcium. Tank levels were 5.4 dKh and 370 calcium. Added some baking soda and dowflake and jacked the reactor up again. The media has melted down about 50% from when I set it up.
    MuralReef and TheRealChrisBrown like this.
  18. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    One year mark today. Took a video. Colors do not show up well on this video - sorry about that. Lights just came on, so stuff is not puffed out very well. In any case...

    SynDen likes this.
  19. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    CaRx used this much media, but most of it recently. It just really started to take off recently. This was calcite, which is very dense, so this is probably 3-4 pounds worth. I expect that it will use another few inches in a month - once it starts to use, it scales quickly.

    Did a final water change on May 4th. Scraped the glass. Otherwise, this is what it looks like. Fish are shy, but there is still the YT Blue Damsel pair, Bag Cardinal pair and a small Scopas tank.

    My main regrets are posted a bit back, but I would like to add:
    • Should have spent more on snails that could right themselves on the sand... had quite a few die when they fell and the hermit crabs got to them.
    • Setosa has died back some since it is in total shade - wish that I would have placed it better.
    • Urchins have eaten a lot of the coralline, but that is probably good since the snails have been a disaster.
    Now that I can spend more money, I am going to replace the large Tunze with a smaller one. The old one works great and was really cheap, but it is large. I also might add an ATO, but I don't know yet... pouring in some water every few days is no big deal and I doubt that these corals care about a slight salinity change.

    I have about a bag of IO left. Updated cost sheet with some food that I had to buy these last few months... otherwise, have not really purchased anything in a long time and just let stuff grow.

    If anybody would like this tank for an educational or charity type purpose, it is free - send me a PM. We can see if one of the local shops will donate the time to move it.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jun 2, 2021
    neil82 likes this.
  20. halmus

    halmus Sardine Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. M.A.S.C Secretary

    Tank looks great!

    I’m curious what product you’re using in your calcium reactors? You mentioned Calcite. Is there a specific brand or trade name? Assuming it’s not something marketed to the marine aquarium trade?

    I’ve been using reborn and need to find a new source.

Share This Page