125 - Took Forever But Here It Comes!

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tbrown3589

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That's the one I use.

Glad to see the rock project started. How's it going? I got my rocks cut up last weekend and I am working on gluing them together this week.

Today turned into a behind the scenes maintenance day. I looked into my SW mixing can and realized I can't even read the heater display through the water. Enough is enough.. Dumped all the water down the drain and scrubbed everything clean. Amazing how much filth comes out of a can that is just "Clean" water lol.
I forgot to post! I made two more smaller rocks - 1 without rock salt and 1 with. They both look better than the first batch. Today I made the "cover" for the return pipe. We'll see how it looks tomorrow evening!
IMG_20220804_155936990_HDR.jpg

I hope I didn't make it too thick on the back.

Edit: Yes, it looks like a turd on a stick.
 
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rmorris_14

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Then might I recommend not holding a goose to your face.
They would still find a way to get me. I was attacked as young girl by a pack of 4 Canadian geese. There was a whole party of people and those things ignored everyone else and kept coming straight for me.
 

Mschmidt

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Ok. I made two more rocks tonight. I used extra salt this time so it looks a little chunkier. We'll see. Also, made this one yesterday.
IMG_20220805_162848594.jpg
Who has time to make rock and update the build thread during a live sale!? Looking better though.
 
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Well, we finished tearing out the bathroom and started replacing the damaged subfloor. We then found a 57" by 70" shower glass wall on the other side of town (1:45 minute drive) and didn't get home until 11 last night so no rocks were pulled out and inspected. Today. I'm thinking I'll skip the vinegar soak since so many people say it doesn't actually do anything. I'll probably add some vinegar to the freshwater and lower the pH for the first couple of days to see if it helps.
 
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Well, I picked up a few more additions to the CUC - 4 Coralline Margarita snails, 4 blue legs, and 3 more Astrea snails. Also got 8 oz of Reef Chowda.
IMG_20220807_185121722.jpg

I got pictures of the rest of the DIY rocks including the sleeve.
IMG_20220807_181924441_HDR.jpg

IMG_20220807_185154305.jpg

That first one needs to be rinsed but it looks nice!
 
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Nice rocks. So do you think it's been worth it vs buying?
Making it was easy. I'm about $30 in right now and have made about 15 pounds. I still have another 30ish pounds each of sand, cement, and salt so I can make plenty more. Worth it? To me, sure because it's been a cool experience. For the money I doubt it overall but it was easier to convince my wife to let me do this for $30 than to convince her I needed to buy $200 worth of rock - especially since half of it is manufactured rock anyway. I'm super excited about the sleeve I made. It'll help cover up that gaudy PVC dropping into the tank. I really like the big shelf - it's the last one I made.

I started soaking them in freshwater last night!!!! Getting close to aquarium ready!
 

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Making it was easy. I'm about $30 in right now and have made about 15 pounds. I still have another 30ish pounds each of sand, cement, and salt so I can make plenty more. Worth it? To me, sure because it's been a cool experience. For the money I doubt it overall but it was easier to convince my wife to let me do this for $30 than to convince her I needed to buy $200 worth of rock - especially since half of it is manufactured rock anyway. I'm super excited about the sleeve I made. It'll help cover up that gaudy PVC dropping into the tank. I really like the big shelf - it's the last one I made.

I started soaking them in freshwater last night!!!! Getting close to aquarium ready!
Sweet good to know always fun trying something new. Never know what will happen!!!
 
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I haven't checked yet today but typically they say to expect around a 10 or higher. Some say to use an aerator to help off gas the pH but that can also give a false sense of security as the pH spike may not be over yet. As far as using it in the garden, I'd be careful with the pH. It could potentially burn the plants.

From my understanding lime is being drawn out which raises the pH.
 
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Alright. Got home, checked pH - out of range. Dip stick test shows bright purple so we're above a 10 I'd say. Also my alkalinity and carbonate hardness are blue on the test strip (out of range) so I'm guessing that a significant amount of lime was leached. Hopefully it leaches fast. Several of the posts/articles I read said freshwater soaking in warmer water helps leach faster and mine are soaking in close to 100 degree water so.... I'll keep watching. Hopefully when I get home from my retreat this weekend or my conference next week it'll be into the saltwater with you!

In other reef news I hadn't seen old Melanurus in a couple of days which was odd - he was out for the first couple of days and then he disappeared. Well... He's out swimming today. Fat and happy looking. Still shy so I can't get a stupid picture of him.
 
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Day two soak: water was milky white, pH, alkalinity, and carbonate hardness was again super high.

@Mschmidt I did a little more checking! So it's between 2 parts cement to 1 part aragonite sand and 1 part rock salt up to 1 part cement to 5 parts aragonite and 2 parts rock salt. I think more sand makes it look more natural, more cement makes it hardier/less fragile? My best mix for looks was 1 part cement, 2 parts sand, 1.5 parts rock salt.
 
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Day two soak: water was milky white, pH, alkalinity, and carbonate hardness was again super high.

@Mschmidt I did a little more checking! So it's between 2 parts cement to 1 part aragonite sand and 1 part rock salt up to 1 part cement to 5 parts aragonite and 2 parts rock salt. I think more sand makes it look more natural, more cement makes it hardier/less fragile? My best mix for looks was 1 part cement, 2 parts sand, 1.5 parts rock salt.
That's a lot more salt than I was expecting. you using fine sand? I have fiji pink, but it would have to come out of the tank atm, which is a little larger particle size and wonder what that would do.

I will likely be buying more for the bowfront though as I have a stronger than normal desire to get some African cichlids for it. Right now the frontrunners are Jewels, Johanni, then kribensis (I think, they might be 4th or 5th).
 

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They would still find a way to get me. I was attacked as young girl by a pack of 4 Canadian geese. There was a whole party of people and those things ignored everyone else and kept coming straight for me.
My dad would never have tolerated that. I was around 5 and started to approach a swan, and swans are huge compared to kids. That swan backed off after looking at dad. It knew! If something even scratched us, it went missing. No joke. He was a scary man when it came to his children. My mom was too though.

Day two soak: water was milky white, pH, alkalinity, and carbonate hardness was again super high.

@Mschmidt I did a little more checking! So it's between 2 parts cement to 1 part aragonite sand and 1 part rock salt up to 1 part cement to 5 parts aragonite and 2 parts rock salt. I think more sand makes it look more natural, more cement makes it hardier/less fragile? My best mix for looks was 1 part cement, 2 parts sand, 1.5 parts rock salt.
This sounds like a headache of a project. Did you manage to make this rock at all porous?
 
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What are all the ways you "filter" your reef aquarium?

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  • Ozone Generator

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