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Feel like such a newb - advice needed

Discussion in 'Newbies Corner' started by DyM, Jun 13, 2019.

  1. Andrew_bram

    Andrew_bram Kraken M.A.S.C Club Member

    I am toying with Tampa bay live rock order if you need some rock and want to go in on order

    Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
    JuanGutz likes this.
  2. flagg37

    flagg37 Amphipod M.A.S.C Club Member

    I ended up turning off my skimmer because the chaeto was doing such a good job with nutrient export. It’s a balance though. Keeping the chaeto at a certain volume to keep the nutrients where you want them. You control it with the fuge light schedule and harvesting.

    On the rock note, I’m a fan of the man made rock for the sustainability aspect. I prefer a more minimal rock scape and supplementing with things like marine pure blocks in the sump.
  3. DyM

    DyM Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    Problems persist. a few weeks back I removed about 75% of cheto, and slowly dosed KN03 to get 10ppm of NO3. A mistake as I should have done one or the other. What happened is over the next few days, NO3 went up to near 25ppm. Even now after a few weeks, it's still over 10, but steady and honestly think this isn't critical. However after a few weeks with NO3, still have SPS - purple stylo withering away now, and LPS candy cane not looking good and slowly dying. Again, chalices, and other stuff acans, etc looks great.

    Tested for stray current, and there is none. Tested for copper, and it was undetected. Tested for Ammonia and as it's undetected.

    Sent in ICP test and They highlighted two items, first that Chlorine was high. I tested my RODI water again with INSTA-TEST LaMotte Test Strips for Free and Total Chlorine. Both read 0/undetected. Knowing it is off, I ordered a chlorimatic carbon block and some Brightwell Aquatics HomeErase-Cl P - Powdered Dechlorinator. Not sure how much of an issue this really is, but is something I can fix.

    Second ICP pointed out my Strontium was low. I had some liquid and powered Strontium. I put a teaspoon in and will add it to my two part dosing as Randy gave a receipt for that. For now I dosed a teaspoon and ordered a test kit. I dosed on Friday and today, everything seems the same (no good). I don't want to blindly dose so should have the test kit tomorrow.

    Observation on my part, Calc and Mag are a lot higher on the ICP than my salifert test kits. Alk is not measured/provided. bummer.

    After I address these two, I can only think of the issue brought up here on live rock. This is tricky adding live rock without causing huge spikes. I do have some tanks so can prepep....

    Details on the ICP

    First my reading, second compared to Fiji
    Silver 0.01 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Aluminum 0.07 ppm 0.05 ppm
    Arsenic 0.01 ppm 0.01 ppm
    Boron 6.06 ppm 4.57 ppm
    Barium 0.06 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Beryllium 0.00 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Bromine 58.01 ppm 51.35 ppm
    Calcium 462.59 ppm 397.67 ppm
    Cadmium 0.00 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Cerium 0.00 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Chlorine 21542.13 ppm 18427.15 ppm
    Cobalt 0.11 ppm 0.01 ppm
    Chromium 0.05 ppm 0.02 ppm
    Copper 0.05 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Iron 0.00 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Gallium 0.03 ppm 0.01 ppm
    Iodine 0.05 ppm 0.04 ppm
    Potassium 405.58 ppm 384.69 ppm
    Lanthanum 0.01 ppm 0.01 ppm
    Lithium 0.11 ppm 0.18 ppm
    Magnesium 1486.23 ppm 1239.34 ppm
    Manganese 0.00 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Molybdenum 0.01 ppm 0.01 ppm
    Sodium 11580.70 ppm 10505.98 ppm
    Nickel 0.01 ppm 0.01 ppm
    Phosphorus 0.02 ppm 0.05 ppm
    Lead 0.00 ppm 0.01 ppm
    Rubidium 0.00 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Sulfur 834.79 ppm 834.73 ppm
    Antimony 0.03 ppm 0.01 ppm
    Selenium 0.01 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Silicon 0.22 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Tin 0.00 ppm 0.01 ppm
    Strontium 5.59 ppm 7.47 ppm
    Titanium 0.00 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Thallium 0.00 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Uranium 0.04 ppm 0.02 ppm
    Vanadium 0.00 ppm 0.00 ppm
    Tungsten 0.01 ppm 0.01 ppm
    Zinc 0.00 ppm 0.00 ppm
  4. scchase

    scchase Shark Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. B.O.D. Member-at-Large

    Chlorine is just the measurement of the Chloride aspect of Sodium Chloride aka salt, if that is high your salinity may be high as well.
    neoalchemist74 likes this.
  5. CrashReef

    CrashReef Copepod

    I know this is a little old for my reply...

    If the coral hasn't already improved in this time, then I have to ask:

    How is your DT flow? SPS like good flow. I'm talking good and deep total tank flow. Not just a power head placed 3" from the water line. Flow good enough to be constantly keeping rocks clean from detritus.

    This just came to mind since your params seem to be in line, and the only thing I haven't seen discussed is DT flow.

  6. DyM

    DyM Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    Really appreciate you reading and replying. @CrashReef - I have 4 Tunze's (2 6105's and 2 6095's). I think flow is good. At this point I don't have any SPS.

    My problems still persist but....
    - Calcium test kit was bad, and found that out from doing the ICP test that measured 462. I pulled out a new Salifert Cal test and it was reading over 500. I haven't dosed Calc in quite a few weeks and yesterday it tested at 450. It's coming down within range.
    - I bought some live rock with bonus coral on it from a reefer near me. The mushrooms, zoas and pally's are doing well
    - I ordered and seeded more bacteria (SurfZone and other stuff), https://www.ipsf.com/
    - lowered feeding to a total of 5 cubes + pellets + flake food per day (Fish are doing great)
    - I'm not chasing numbers, and for the most part am trying to leave well alone and let the system balance out. Still, No3 is over 25, but under 50. Still high. My cheto fuge area is full, and I have a 1/2 cup of bio pellets going in a reactor. It's been about 1.5 weeks since I added the bacteria seeding.
    - still had a lot of LPS die in the last month.
    I need to harvest some cheto, but worried about how it will impact nutrient export so plan on pulling small clumps every few days as needed. In the mean time starting to do a lot of water changes via the liter meter III - for some reason starting to feel there is something toxic that needs to be diluted. Planing on doing 10 gal a day for a few weeks (previously changed 1.8gal a day) . Where my system is, it's really really inconvenient to do a water change and even if I did it, the biggest container I own is a brute trash can 35 gal.

    At this point I am going slow, and will do more softies until everything establishes and takes off. I have some theories of what caused all this, but will wait until it's all fixed before reflecting on what truly went wrong. Truly frustrated.
  7. CrashReef

    CrashReef Copepod

    Best of luck. I have been there before with LPS and SPS. It was always the Phosphate that was my issue. Tests showed it within range but that's because the algae/coral would keep it out of the water column.

    I just re read your original post and noticed you were running ozone.. do you have a ORP probe? Too much ozone (high orp) could also be causing issues.
  8. DyM

    DyM Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    So an update, things got worse and now seems to be looking up.

    Chalices died (all), several acans withered away, a few are still hanging in there. Yes I feed them.

    Although not certain, feel that the tank needed to re-establish. I've dosed several sources of bacteria, introduced a lot of simpler corals (pallies, shrooms and leathers), just got my Calc in about range 440 where I haven't dosed Calc in months (it was over 500). Alk has been stable at 8.2 dkh.

    My skimmer has been off for about a week. It's a Reef Octopus SSS 3000 that is rated to big for my setup. I didn't design this match up, but Chis at AA did. I was from the school that said "you can't over skim" but I now feel you can - in the beginning. Although I have No3 and Po4, I don't have any algae other than some green/brown film on the glass, and a lot of purple/red coraline. I am suspecting my skimmer is really pulling out to much, thus the withering away of corals. Don't know how long I'll keep the skimmer off, but was thinking of turning it on 1/2 a day at some point. Stretching on this one. I never use to have Cheto, my mind keeps going to what's different on this setup, and wondering if Cheto could be pulling out too much, but will stay the course at this point.

    Added some actual reef rock from two different hobbyist sources. All softies and shrooms are doing well. I took a piece of frogspawn from a friend and that is doing good as well.

    Nitrates have been high for a few months now, between 25-50 on salifert, My fuge is full of cheto with continual trimming. Within the last week installed a NO3 sulfur reactor. Just this morning, the output drip of the reactor is at 0 nitrates. Now need to adjust the output to get No3 to about 5-10. Yes I'll go slow with this.

    Haven't run Ozone in more than 6 months, so that could have attributed to the tank not establishing, but it's been a non factor now for a long time.

    Once Cal is at 420, No3 is at 5-10, and every coral I have seems to be 'happy', I'll start to add more coral. Fingers crossed.

    I have a Triton DOC and an ICP Coralvue tests, but will wait until things are more in line before filling to send out.
    Cake_Boss likes this.
  9. TheRealChrisBrown

    TheRealChrisBrown Marlin Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. B.O.D. Member-at-Large

    Tell me more about the nitrate sulfur reactor. I too have been struggling with high nitrates...
  10. DyM

    DyM Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    We all know there are many ways to achieve the same results for things such as nutrient reduction/export. I was hoping that the cheto in the fuge was going to be that answer. I also had a bio pellet reactor to supplement it, but after a few months of running the bio pellets, it's not reducing No3 with about 2 cups. So I pulled that out when I installed the new Sulfur Denitrator reactor. This is basically is a chamber with media, that in a low O2 environment, does what a deep sand bed does. Bacteria consumes NO3 to survive. The output of the effluent is at Zero NO3, and you have to adjust your output in order to get to and maintain the NO3 amount for the entire water column. I had a calcium reactor that I converted to Sulfur Denitrator. This is what I have: https://www.marinedepot.com/korallin-biodenitrator-w-eheim-pump

    I feel the recirculating pump on these really helps, although have seen single chamber tubes (like a DI canister) used by hobbyist in the past with success.

    - Easy to set up
    - Media lasts a long time
    - Once established and tuned, set and forget

    - If you ever need to take apart, or if water flow gets cut off for 4+ hrs, sulfur smell is horrid.
    - Potential for bacteria buildup and clogged reactor so best kept near a dark spot and pull water from a filtered source if possible.
  11. CrashReef

    CrashReef Copepod

    Well I think we are all interested in your journey. Keep us updated every month or so!
  12. Kayvon

    Kayvon Amphipod

    Haven't seen too many people with a sulfur reactor. I'm pretty interested in seeing the results
  13. Kayvon

    Kayvon Amphipod

    Have you seen this thread? Looks like a sweet diy nitrate destroyer.
  14. Haddonisreef

    Haddonisreef Kraken M.A.S.C Club Member

    @DyM I have more stylo and can cut more chalice when your ready.
  15. DyM

    DyM Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    @Haddonisreef Thanks Charlie.

    The Reactor already did it's thing, took less than a week to start working and another week to get NO3 from 25-50 down between 5-10. I'm going to add some coral from a good friend in a few weeks when I'm back from vacation and see how that fairs.
    TheRealChrisBrown likes this.
  16. DyM

    DyM Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    Things have calmed down. The Nitrate reactor did it's job in less than a week. I've been stable at about 5ppm of NO3. I still have a lot of cheto, so now it's working to reduce NO3 and PO4 and the rest is being reduced by the sulfur reactor. PO4 is kept in check with seaklear. I don't think this was the culprit to all my woes but it is important.

    I think it was more in line with what Jada said, the "real reef rock" has a coating that doesn't allow for, or takes much longer, to establish. I added a lot of bateria stands, and new live rock that seemed to help. I see sponges and a lot of fauna life in the sump and in the tank.

    Currently dealing with getting bubble algae under control, next month if it's still in check, I'll be adding more corals. Yeah! I know it's been a long road, but that's a part of the journey.....

    Thanks all for being a sounding board and for your advice. It's appreciated.
    SynDen likes this.
  17. MuralReef

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

    Those of you running sulfur denitrators, where were you able to find the media? I have checked all of the online retailers and all say the same thing. Notify me when back in stock.
  18. MuralReef

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

    So what is the flow through rate for the sulfur denitrator?
  19. ReefCheif

    ReefCheif Shark Platinum Sponsor M.A.S.C Club Member

    Ive never been able to get mine working properly. Its run for 3 months and doesnt do a damn thing. All the research Ive done says its running properly and the no3 coming out of the effluent never changes. The slower the drip the lower the NO3 is supposed to be and you control the level based on the effluent drip/flow. Ive ran it almost closed with a bout a drip per second for multiple weeks, nothinf. Tried running it more open, same, nothing.
  20. MuralReef

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

    Downloaded the Korallin manual and it said to run it at about 1-2 drops per second basically for the first 3-4 weeks.

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