Melyssa's Coralife 29 Gal

Discussion in 'Saltwater Aquarium Builds' started by LyssahBlue, Jan 31, 2018.

  1. LyssahBlue

    LyssahBlue Valued Member Member

    I bought my coralife biocube from someone on craigslist so it already has a little character. This is the condition it came in, tiny bit of sand in there still, barnacles forming on the back piece already. I believe this is a good thing :) Coralife1.jpg coralife2.jpg
    Filled with 10lbs dry sand that the former owner had given to me and 20 lbs live sand I purchased, rinsed with salt water 3 times before adding (instant ocean), it cleared up within 24 hours which was surprising, I thought it would be cloudy for a few days! coralife3.jpg I did put a fake anemone in there just for the heck of it - it came with all the swag I got from the former owner.
    Last night I got my rocks in the mail, they are huge!! and heavy!! Tonight I will begin chiseling away per @Nart s suggestion! I found the size of the rocks rather daunting last night and was ready to order something else as I slammed the rocks on the pavement in my driveway trying (and failing)to get a break.
    I'm sure this behavior at 9pm was both confusing and amusing to my neighbors, lol. SW rocks.jpg
    So this is only the beginning, my first SW tank and only 4 days old. Can't wait to get this up and running! :)
     
  2. Wild Bill

    Wild Bill Well Known Member Member

    Good luck, I look forward to seeing how this turns out.
     
  3. Sprogladite

    Sprogladite Valued Member Member

    Yay, love build threads! Following along for the ride :)
     




  4. Nart

    Nart Well Known Member Member

    This set-up is going to be sweeeeeeet!
    Did my guide help you out a lot in terms of setting up the tank?

    Take your time with the scape. It might be frustrating, but just really take your time with it till you are satisfied.
    If you aren't happy with it and feel burnt out trying to scape it. Just leave it and come back to it next day. Remember, try to think of in terms of ease of cleaning and maintenance. As well as open areas for water to flow through, for fishes to swim in and out of, coral placements in the future. Just things like that.

    Excited. Can't wait.
     
  5. OP
    OP
    LyssahBlue

    LyssahBlue Valued Member Member

    Haha! absolutely, you've been a great help! I'm so glad that I found this site; you are all so supportive and knowledgeable, I'm happy to be part of the fishlore family :) I will keep this updated along the way and will have plenty of questions I'm sure!
     
  6. Sprogladite

    Sprogladite Valued Member Member

    Something I found really useful while scaping was to plot out the footprint of the tank in tape on the floor and build my scape within that - then took photos and recreated it when we moved it into the tank :)
     
  7. OP
    OP
    LyssahBlue

    LyssahBlue Valued Member Member

    That's so clever! I love it, thanks for the tip! I will definitely try that way first.
     
  8. stella1979

    stella1979 Moderator Moderator Member

    Yay! I love a build thread too!!! I'm very excited for a fellow Melissa, and will be very happy to follow along here.

    I can't recommend taking your time with scaping enough! Remember to think of things in the long term, as in how it'll look in the future with all your coral. :D @Nart 's and @Sprogladite 's advice is very good. A rescape isn't a lot of fun, and you can find out what an endeavor it can be on Nart's thread. It was definitely interesting to watch, but not something I want to do any time soon. ;)
     
  9. Dawn Michele

    Dawn Michele Well Known Member Member

    Congratulations on your tank!!!
     
  10. OP
    OP
    LyssahBlue

    LyssahBlue Valued Member Member

    Message removed, may have violated forum rules by mistake.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2018
  11. Nart

    Nart Well Known Member Member

    Becareful linking to other forums. I think it's per forum rules, we aren't allowed to? Double check. It's frowned upon by the mods on here.
     
  12. OP
    OP
    LyssahBlue

    LyssahBlue Valued Member Member

    Thanks @Nart I should have realized that would be frowned upon.
     
  13. grantm91

    grantm91 Fishlore VIP Member

    You can post a link if its to a helpful thread, I’ve done that a few times.
     
  14. OP
    OP
    LyssahBlue

    LyssahBlue Valued Member Member

    Rock shaping 101! What a lot of work - but it's pretty fun too. The first night I worked on this piece I couldn't find my hammer and ended up using a screwdriver and the broad side of a heavy wrench...2 hours of pounding away got me from here... Rock 1.jpg
    To here...I have marked my goal... Rock 2.jpg
    Lots of work for not that much result, this rock is super hard but has some random soft spots too (really worried about those clouding my tank). I went out yesterday a bought a proper hammer and a chisel and wow what a difference that made!! Another hour and a half and I have this... Arch1.jpg
    which I'm quite happy with :D
    Somewhere under all that dust and rubble I have marked out the footprint of my tank per @Sprogladite 's suggestion and there really isn't a ton more room in my cube. I'm thinking a small tower with a flat piece or two will be all I can fit, hoping the rock will cooperate with me - I'll be working on that tonight. Really want the rock in the tank this weekend!
     
  15. OP
    OP
    LyssahBlue

    LyssahBlue Valued Member Member

    And just for fun, here is my rockspiration... I know it won't look just like this but I'm keeping this in mind. Rockspiration.jpg
     
  16. Nart

    Nart Well Known Member Member

    Very nice. It's slowly coming together. Just rinse off and soak the rocks before it goes into your tank.
     
  17. stella1979

    stella1979 Moderator Moderator Member

    It's looking great Melyssa!!! You've got more nerve than I. :) When I received my rocks, I was a little disappointed that I got two huge ones and a few small. At the time, I wanted to change them, but was afraid I would end up with lots of small pieces.... so I went with what I had. I'm happy with it too, but just wanted to commend you on working towards your most wanted look. :)

    Give the rock a good scrub and get some water on it! :D Do you know what kind of rock you have, and are you prepared for curing? My rock is dense Fiji and didn't have to cure for long. In fact, I didn't even get a phosphate test kit until about a month in, and from there, I never got high phosphates. Hoping for you to have a quick cure and cycle too!
     
  18. OP
    OP
    LyssahBlue

    LyssahBlue Valued Member Member

    Thanks, I don't have anything to test for phosphates either, but I do have something to add that will get rid of them...not sure if it eliminates or just makes them less harmful...I received lots of random products from the tanks previous owner. The rocks are aragonite very hard and heavy but they do have soft spots so I'm crossing fingers that my outdoor garden hose isn't frozen solid & I can blast it with a heavy spray to knock debris loose before soaking.
     
  19. Wild Bill

    Wild Bill Well Known Member Member

    Make sure you check expiration dates on those test kits.
     
  20. stella1979

    stella1979 Moderator Moderator Member

    In response to your media question... :)

    What kind of bio balls? Are they porous or plastic? The issue with nitrates arises if the media is capable of holding on to detritus, so usually I recommend against sponges and floss unless you change or clean it every few days. I don't think this will be a concern with bio balls, but it will really depend on what kind they are. The plastic ones do have little ridges and stuff that allow them to hold detritus. Porous balls generally do not 'capture' larger particles, so they shouldn't be a problem. I'd recommend keeping them in a media bag and swishing the bag in old tank water a couple of times a month, like every other water change, more so if you believe them capable of holding detritus. Hope this helps!
     




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