Donny's Frankenstein forty

Donny41

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First post on reef2reef, had been over on nanoreef but I havent been very active over there and I plan on any future tanks being larger than a nano so I figured I'd continue documenting this one on here. I started my first reef tank in march 2018 (10 gallon) and transferred that into an old 40 breeder I had when I moved in September 2018. Tank was running smooth until July when I was away on my honeymoon and we lost power. Came back to 3 dead fish, a bunch of bleached or completely dead corals, and an abundance of algae. Since then I've beaten back most of the algae, which I'm pretty sure was dinos, and have gotten most most of my corals that survived back to there original color. Going forward I am not looking at adding too much more into the tank, but rather work on getting the best possible growth out of the corals I do have.

Filtration
-Reef octo HOB skimmer
-Marineland emperor 400 HOB filter with carbon/purigen

Lighting
Aquatic life 24 in t5 led hybrid
2x blue plus 2x aquablue special
Hydra 26 hd (ab+)

Flow
Icecap 3k gyre
2x fluval sea ac powerheads

ATO
xp aqua duetto

Maintenance Routine
4.5 gallon water change twice per week
Change filter pads twice per week

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Donny41

Donny41

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Just finished up my saturday morning water change. One of my favorite times to look at the tank when all the flow is off, cool to see it so clearly from the top. Also went to the store this week to pick up some frozen food. Ended up coming home with a few frags and a small blue eye bristle tooth tang. I know this tank is small for one. I have a good relationship with the store and they have no problem swapping it when it gets bigger or I can donate it to my brothers 220. Every day I am seeming to notice slight growth in a lot of my corals, hoping this keeps up!
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Donny41

Donny41

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Few notes from today
- bought a digital tds meter. Tds from my tap coming in at 29 ppm which is very good. Tested water out of my rodi and it was at 2 ppm. Going to test again and let the unit run for a few minutes first to see if that was the issue, otherwise going to have to replace the di resin. Unit was used before I had it so not sure the life left on that.
- tds meter also functions as a thermometer. Checked the temp of my tank and found that it was at almost 83°. Had been relying on my heaters thermostat which I know is bad practice but had never bothered to check. Will be monitoring more closely going forward.
 
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Donny41

Donny41

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Nice set up and recovery! I know people hate on Xenia coral but I really like when people have it grow out like the way you have yours! Great job!!
Thanks! Next order of business is actually going to be trimming the xenia back. Its starting to encroach on a few things. Gonna check out a few stores to see if anyone's willing to give me some store credit for some frags. I do really enjoy watching it though, quite mesmerizing at times.
 
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Donny41

Donny41

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Welcome to R2R! It seems like you are on the right track - do you have a water test kit to check on the rest of your parameters other than TDS?
Thanks! And yes I do. Monitor ca/alk with red sea, nitrate with salifert and i have a hanna low range phosphate checker that I ordered in the midst of my post honeymoon algae fest but i don't check that often anymore. Currently dosing 10 mL BRS 2-part daily. Only parameter I have difficulty testing for is magnesium. I had been using red seas kit but was getting readings off the charts. Ordered a salifert kit in the same order as the TDS meter and when i tested yesterday it read 1470, which doesn't seem possible since i have yet to dose any magnesium.
 

Peace River

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[...]
Only parameter I have difficulty testing for is magnesium. I had been using red seas kit but was getting readings off the charts. Ordered a salifert kit in the same order as the TDS meter and when i tested yesterday it read 1470, which doesn't seem possible since i have yet to dose any magnesium.
Do you use Instant Ocean salt by any chance? Others who do have mentioned high levels of mg recently.
 
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Peace River

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I do in fact. I will definitely look into that
Here’s a thread you may find interesting:

 
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Donny41

Donny41

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Here’s a thread you may find interesting:

Looked up instant ocean high magnesium and found a few other similar threads. I will test the next batch of salt water i make on friday or saturday with both the salifert and red sea kits. Also have a new box of IO coming next week so I will be able to compare the two.
 

Peace River

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Looked up instant ocean high magnesium and found a few other similar threads. I will test the next batch of salt water i make on friday or saturday with both the salifert and red sea kits. Also have a new box of IO coming next week so I will be able to compare the two.
Based on the thread you may also want to do what you can to mix the salt in the bucket including rolling the bucket. Good luck - let us know what you find!
 
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Donny41

Donny41

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If it is IO Reef Cyrstals, you will more then likely find levels over 1500.
Just plain Instant Ocean. I thought my red sea kit had gone bad when i had used up all the reagent with no color change the last time I tested the freshly mixed salt water. When i first tested fresh IO water the mag level was on the lower side from what i can remember (1200 ish, do not have my log with me, ill check when i get home later)
 
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Donny41

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Instant ocean magnesium update:

Mixed up fresh IO yesterday and let it mix overnight. When I tested this morning I got the following results for magnesium at 1.025 s.g

1500 ppm salifert
1540 ppm red sea

Numbers are higher than expected for regular IO but not high enough to preclude me from using up this rest of this batch of salt. If anything it should save me from dosing any magnesium until I go through this box.
 
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Donny41

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Saturday morning water change update:

Glued down the frags that I picked up last week. Always an adventure with my female clown attempting to eat my knuckles.. she managed to break the skin today lol.

First attempt at fragging xenia and putting it on a plug. Much more difficult than I anticipated since it's basically a mass of gelatinous goop when its removed from the rock.

Finally getting some coraline algae on my rocks. Had been growing well on the glass and powerheads for months.

Current waters parameters after water change
Alk- 7.8
Ca- 420
Mag- 1440

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Donny41

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New toy for the tank. Reef breeders reef power rpm. Taking out my two ac powerheads for now but might put one or both back in to really kick up the flow around where I want to put the majority of my sps corals

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