one week old

Discussion in 'General Reef Aquarium Discussion' started by Mike Bivens, Mar 11, 2018.

  1. Mike Bivens

    Mike Bivens Member

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    3-10-18.jpg OK Here we are... added Dr. Tims 7 days ago after I set up the tanks with 120 lbs of caribsea special grade + 5 8x4 marine pure blocks in sump, Been feeding small amounts of food for past week. What am I missing? Do I need to add a dead shrimp or 2 to rise my ammonia levels? I have notices the nitrates have been going up. Now up to 4.0 ppm. but ammonia is still very low .25 . I just want to make sure I am going in right direction. They guy at the fish store told me to get a fish( damsel ) I said NO!!!! I am in no rush but want to make sure I am not missing anything.
     
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  2. Pat24601

    Pat24601 Well-Known Member

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    Reef Chronicle:
    Yup
    I followed these instructions when using Dr. Tim’s ammonia to fishless cycle.

    http://www.drtimsaquatics.com/resources/fishless-cycling

    They worked great! No need to added a deli shrimp or anything like that if you are adding Dr. Tim’s ammonia directly.

    Definitely don’t put a damsel in your tank. They are very aggressive fish. That’s terrible advice even aside from the cruel to fish thing.

    If you are getting nitrates to rise, you are going the right direction. That’s the last stage of the cycle.

    The key line to the document I just linked is this:
    • Continue to measure every day. When you can add 2 ppm ammonia and BOTH ammonia and nitrite are below 0.2 ppm (NH3-N or NO2-N) the next day your tank is cycled – congrats! You’re done!
    Personally I wait until ammonia is 0, but heh. :)
     
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  3. Mike Bivens

    Mike Bivens Member

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    Thanks for the info. I saw that site also but not when I started. The one thing I did not do was add the ammonium chloride. I missed that one. But I did check my nitrated and today and they are going up now over 4.0 ppm My test kit only goes to 4. I will keep checking once Nitrates fall below 2.0 ppm I will be good to go. When will a water change be needed, After the drop or before. Because if before I think that will give me a false reading. Is that right?
    Thanks again for the info.
     
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  4. Pat24601

    Pat24601 Well-Known Member

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    Reef Chronicle:
    Yup
    I’m not trying to be patronizing, so if I sound that way, it’s not intentional. But, the way I’m reading your post I’m wondering if the cycle is clear.

    What happens is you introduce ammonia to your tank one way or another. Letting a deli shrimp rot is one way. Adding ammonia directly through something like Dr. Tim’s ammonia is another. https://www.amazon.com/DrTims-Aquat...d=1520796739&sr=8-2&keywords=Dr+Tim’s+ammonia.

    That ammonia then turns into NITRITES, which are also dangerous for your fish.

    The NITRITES then turns into NITRATES (note the difference between the i and the a) which are relative safe for your fish.

    So, what you are looking to do is see ammonia turn into nitrites turn into nitrates.

    Once your tank can safely turn ammonia AND nitrites into nitrates, your cycle is done.

    So, you want both ammonia and nitrites to read 0 before adding fish.

    Nitrates will not really go down until you do a water change. In fact, one of the major point of water changes is to bring nitrates down.

    I thought you had added dr times ammonia when I posted. I now realize you haven’t. So, you do need an ammonia source. Adding a deli shrimp isn’t a bad idea if you want to do that.

    Then watch your ammonia and nitrites. You should see both spike up and then go to zero. After which, your nitrates will go up. Those won’t come down really until you do a water change.

    Once your tank is cycled, then you do a big water change to get the nitrates down before adding livestock.

    I probably didn’t describe that great. I’ll look for a link.
     
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  5. Mike Bivens

    Mike Bivens Member

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    I did add Dr. Tims the same day I added the live sand, but I didn't add the ammoudium chloride drops
    That was only a week ago. I did not test for ammonia until yesterday day, But have been testing nitrates of the past week,
    day 3 -- .25
    day 5 -- 1.0
    day 7 -- 4.0
    day 8 -- over 4.0
    so my nitrates are going up. I don't plan on adding any fish for a few weeks. Just want to make sure the cycle is going in the right direction
    Thanks again for the assistance.
     
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  6. SPR

    SPR Well-Known Member

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    Hi Mike

    Why don’t you have a read up on ATM Colony. It cycles a tank virtually immediately and then you don’t need to go through this long procedure.

    I’ve used it twice with no ill effects and it basically adds all the bacteria for the nitrogen cycle in one go and your good to go. That’s it, very easy and no rotting shrimps, unless that’s your thing. If you want to see if it works look at my build thread

    I appreciate the normal historical ways of doing things, and if you want to do that there is nothing wrong with those methods. But it’s 2018 not 1970. Science has advanced a little.......
     
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  7. Mike Bivens

    Mike Bivens Member

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    From what I have seen and heard online ATM doesn't work that great. But thats not to say it doesn't, its just what I have seen online. And anything you see online my not be true, but you have to trust it sometimes. I just got back into this hobby after 30 years and I know a lot of things have changed. I am in no hurry to have an instant tank. But do want to know if by not adding the ammonia chloride did I screw up. Because if I did, Then I will start the cycle process over.
    Thanks for the advise,
     
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  8. Pat24601

    Pat24601 Well-Known Member

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    Reef Chronicle:
    Yup
    The good news is you really can’t screw up a cycle. One way or another you will eventually cycle. It’s only a matter of time.

    You definitely need an ammonia source. Typically that’s one of these ways.

    1) you add ammonia chloride like from this link.
    DrTim's Aquatics Ammonium chloride - 2 oz bottle https://www.amazon.com/dp/B006MP4QG6/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_ZjUPAbK5K4ZYP

    2) you have something decomposing in your tank. I personally use frozen fish food because I have it on hand, but a deli shrimp is very popular.

    3) you have natural die off from the live rock you bought. I’m not sure what kind of live rock you settled on. If it’s from the ocean, it may have a lot if die off and you may not need an ammonia source.

    4) I HATE this method but you can add a fish, like a damsel, and live cycle letting the fish create the ammonia. But, don’t do this. Most of us hate it. :)

    If you don’t have an ammonia source from one of those methods, then, yeah, I’d get one.

    Personally, I like adding dr Tim’s ammonia chloride because it lets me add and measure exactly how much ammonia I want, but there’s nothing at all wrong with just adding a deli shrimp or frozen fish food or whatever and letting it decompose. In a lot of ways, that’s easier.

    There’s not really a way to go too far wrong here. So long as ammonia is getting into your system somehow your tank will eventually cycle.
     
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    Last edited: Mar 12, 2018
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  9. nanoreefing4fun

    nanoreefing4fun Well-Known Member
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    Reef Chronicle:
    Yup
    +1 add an ammonia source - you may know all this... but adding as it may help someone else starting up & new to sw

    Cycling tank:

    Watch for the ammonia to soar then fall to zero, then the nitrites soar & then fall to zero, then the nitrates soar, once this happens, do water changes to get rid of the nitrates - tank cycled

    Depending on the state of your LR (how cured it was & how much die off it had), in general it will look something like this...



    [​IMG]
     
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  10. nanoreefing4fun

    nanoreefing4fun Well-Known Member
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    Yup
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