Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Dandelyn 07-08-2008 02:07 PM

Just starting out... newbie w/ 29G FOWLR
I just starting my marine aquarium adventure 3 days ago... I have my sand in the aquarium (and am still waiting for it to clear!), the water is in and nearly perfect on specific gravity, the temperature and filter are working great... and my pH is almost right... Once I finish perfecting all those things... what is the next step? Live Rock? How long should I wait before getting the live rock and starting the cycling process?

Any advice or lessons you may have learned would be such a great help to me!!! I have an awesome shop to get supplies from, but I feel like I'm always running to them with questions!

SKAustin 07-08-2008 03:49 PM

I would have to say, adding your live rock would be the next step. Unless there's something I'm forgetting, in which case I'm sure someone will chime in. As long as your SG, PH and Temp are in check, I dont see what other concerns you might have before you move forward with the rock.

Welcome to the salty side of the hobby, so nice of you to join us ;)

Make sure to keep our forum in your favorites, as nobody should ever rely on the advice of a retail establishment alone. I'm sure you'll have plenty of questions, and we have plenty of members willing and able to help you out.

And hey, dont forget to keep us all updated with your progress with plenty of photos. You should start a build thread so that you can record, and others can see, your progress. That way, folks may have the opportunity to chime in if they notice something awry, and possibly help you thwart a potential future problem.

:) Welcome to!

Dandelyn 07-09-2008 07:12 AM

Well, since I've never used sand in an aquarium before, and I wasn't told to rinse it... I didn't. Now I have a fine layer of silt aka very very fine sand on top of my sand. Anytime anything gets near it, it stirs the whole mess up and makes the tank so cloudy. Any suggestions? I was thinking about getting in there with my siphon and sucking it out... good idea or no?


Pasfur 07-09-2008 05:44 PM

I would use airline tubing to create a gentle siphon, and yes, remove as much loose debris from the sand surface as possible without removing the actual sand.

For the record, how much sand depth did you use? You want a MINIMUM of 3'', and preferably 4'' of sand. You will not get the proper nitrification from a sand bed of less than 3'' depth.

Check out my pics if you get a chance. I have a 37 gallon aquarium, which is exactly the same dimensions as a 29 gallon, but 4 inches taller. I used a full 4'' sand depth and my Nitrates test zero, which is exactly why you use the sand bed to begin with.

Dandelyn 07-10-2008 11:42 AM

I'll measure the sand bed when I get home... but I used about 32lbs of sand in it... and being that you have the same dimensions on your tank, that should give you an idea...

The LFS said not to worry about the loose sand, it will be an annoyance now, but it'll eventually settle under the rest.

Got 16lbs of LR last night and about 15lbs of dead lace boulder... My roomie tried to be helpful an 'arrange' the LR while I went to bring the rest of the lace boulder into the room after cleaning it and she stirred up the bottom so bad I could only just set all the rock inside the tank! I informed her that you can't just slide the rocks around on the bottom. Move slowly and gently!!! It was almost clear again this morning, so I'll arrange them when I get home!

I have to run the AC in my room 24/7 to keep the water at 80! So I'm hoping to find a way to maintain the temp without getting a chiller. Silly PA weather!

Pasfur 07-10-2008 08:05 PM

For temperature help.... try buying a small computer fan with a mounting clip. You can usually get them at Radio Shack for about $10.

Attach the fan to the frame of the aquarium so that it blows across the surface of the water.

Dandelyn 07-11-2008 09:25 AM

Sand Bed Depth
So I measured the sand bed last night and its 2.5 maybe 3 inches deep... guess I'm buying more sand!

Pasfur 07-11-2008 07:27 PM

You are very close for sure. To play it safe i'd get it just over 3''. The benefits of a deeper sand bed are worth the effort.

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