Dry or Live Rock?

Discussion in 'New to Saltwater & Reef Aquariums? Post Here' started by Neo Jeo, Dec 7, 2017 at 6:23 PM.

?
  1. Live

  2. Dry

  3. Live and Dry

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  1. Neo Jeo

    Neo Jeo Well-Known Member

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    Im starting a new 90g tank! I have been reading about live and dry rock. I really can’t make up my mind. These are my thoughts.

    Live-Amazing, Fun, Easy but you can get pests and unwanted things and it’s $$$
    Dry-easy to work with , cheap but can leach phosphates? You have to soak it? Takes FOREVER to grow stuff on it? Still causes brown algae blooms . Where is the best place to get it from RC I read?

    Now I can mix the 2 but then what if 1 live rock has a flatworm and now I’m screwed???

    I really don’t know what way to go...

    Please help and thanks for your time in advance
     
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  2. Big G

    Big G Well-Known Member Build Thread Contributor

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  3. Yuki Rihwa

    Yuki Rihwa Well-Known Member

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    I was used dry rock to start up my tank and took me over a year to get thing inline so if I start another new system then I would start with real live rock/live sand, I'm willing to deal with unwanted pest rather than dealing with algae (the ugly new tank phase with dry rocks) for months.
     
  4. g5flier

    g5flier Well-Known Member

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    I started mine with dry, after 7 months went ahead and added 30% live. I just couldn't get SPS to take hold. Its very debatable but I wouldn't even consider setting up a new tank with dry again. Takes a very long time to mature and you will have algae issues. If you are even thinking of SPS, live rock is the way to go, not live dry rock but LIVE ROCK. Take a look at this article if you are still debating, written by a long time authority on reefing.

    https://reefbuilders.com/2017/07/08/revisiting-my-elos-tank-after-18-months/
     
  5. Flatlandreefer

    Flatlandreefer Well-Known Member

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    I started with 100% dry rock and regret it so I would say at least a 50-50 mix of dry and live rock but preferably all live rock.
     
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  6. Merv49

    Merv49 Active Member

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    I started my tank with pukani dry rock that I soaked in bleach for three weeks prior to using. Phosphates have never been above .25 and nitrates never above .25. My tank is five months old now and has 18 fish, 50 frags and no algae problems or pests.
     
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  7. Jl330

    Jl330 Well-Known Member

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    I voted dry? But it's impossible to avoid hitchhikers at some point. Rock just brings in a lot at once. It's fun and can be bad. I brought home too many hydroids and vermitid snails.
     
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  8. Neo Jeo

    Neo Jeo Well-Known Member

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  9. Big G

    Big G Well-Known Member Build Thread Contributor

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    Ancient reef that is now dry and mined. Yep. Best price I could find. I used 2 boxes without much to spare for my 90. Had fun breaking, shaping and gluing the pieces. Recommend Apoxie-Sculpt, gel super glue, and BCI drying accelerator to build a rock scape. Got the Apoxie-Sculpt (natural color) through Amazon, too. Here's a pic of the rock scape made from 2 boxes to give you an idea of how much you have to work with:

    IMG_0702.JPG
     
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  10. Mikedawg

    Mikedawg Well-Known Member R2R Supporter

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    And remember, you're going to be looking at it for a long, long time so get something that looks natural and has eye appeal for you. I started with dry because of concern over unwanted hitchhikers but now only use live, preferably Tukani, for the look and diversity of animals that live on it. I really haven't found any man made stuff that looks good compared to live rock and as Jl330 mentioned you'll have to deal with some pests at some time anyway. The ocean is not sterile and, frankly, and interesting part of reefing is about keeping alive/controlling/eradicating a wide variety of organisms.

    You cannot make a bad choice; it really depends on your expectations for your reef tank IMHO
     
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  11. Neo Jeo

    Neo Jeo Well-Known Member

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    The votes show more dry then live as of now.... Man, the more I read the more I get scared about hitch hickers.. Seriously does everyone have a hard time with them and algae blooms.. I just ordered a tank and stand for 750$ lol.... Can someone calm me down ;)
     
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  12. Mikedawg

    Mikedawg Well-Known Member R2R Supporter

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    Just identify what you want out of your tank and you'll know the answer.............some people even make up a decision matrix to help them rationalize what really is an emotional decision I think; anyway get what you like.
     
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  13. AdamNC

    AdamNC Lawnmower Blenny says nom nom R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    I started with 80% dry rock and 20% live rock. Took about 6 months until I could keep sps but imo it was worth it for the cost.
     
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  14. Neo Jeo

    Neo Jeo Well-Known Member

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    That's what Im thinking, I really like this base rock from here: http://www.naturesocean.com/aquarium-supplies/aquarium-saltwater-rock.html

    What you think?

    Also, what about getting live rock and putting into a small tub for a bit and watch it for a month? Its going to take a month for my tank to get to me anyways? Good idea? would it even help lol?
     
  15. Neo Jeo

    Neo Jeo Well-Known Member

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    Is there something to add to a new tank to speed up the process? Dose a red reef? company make it?
     
  16. Rn1139

    Rn1139 Member

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    I like dry rock much cheaper and pest free. If your looking for bigger pieces I got mine at ocala reef
     
  17. 75galOCD

    75galOCD Well-Known Member

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    You haven't reefed until you reefed with live rock!
    The bond that is created, as the rock is reborn in your system is like nothing else!
    My rock never died.
    That is why I think calling reefing a "hobby" is a tragic under statement!
    Or is it just me?:)
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2017 at 4:21 AM
  18. EastSideBAy

    EastSideBAy Member

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    Started my 150 gallon last year in November with dry real reef rock. Honestly i will never go with dry rock anymore because of the numerous of issues i had to deal with the tank. one of them being not being able to keep sps at all with perfect parameter. As well dealing with dino and the various problem, I will be resetting my tank this January with changing out with live rock from Tampa bay saltwater
     
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  19. Mustangtodd97

    Mustangtodd97 Active Member

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    IMG_1169.JPG IMG_1208.PNG IMG_1352.JPG I used Caribesea Liferock. Love it. Infused with good bacteria, no hitchhikers, coralune look, cheaper then live rock. I highlt recommend it. Check it out...
     
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  20. ThunderGoose

    ThunderGoose Well-Known Member R2R Supporter

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    I've started two tanks - one with dry and one with live. While the hitchhikers can be a problem (I got a mantis shrimp! That I didn't find until after I had lost livestock :(). If starting another tank I would definitely go live. BUT I would put the rocks in the tank and watch for a while to try and discover the worsts of the pests (seriously put a piece of shrimp and a leaf of nori out and watch the hitchhiker's come out for dinner). Slow, slow, slow is the way to go.
     
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