Nitrogen Cycle Question *Help*



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Aug 8, 2022
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So I'm on my 11th day of cycling my tank and had a couple questions regarding my current progress and what the future of the cycle may look like.

When I started I added Dr Tim's Ammonia and got my Ammonia to 2.0ppm in which I then added a recommended dose of Brightwell MicroBacter XLM 15x concentration Nitrifying Bacteria (about 1/3 of the bottle or so). After 2-3 days nothing was changing (it says 7 day cycle) so I added some more of the Nitrifying Bacteria. About 3 days after that (so about 7 days in or so) I contacted Brightwell cause nothing had changed AT ALL in my parameters. The Brightwell guy told me dump the rest of the bottle in the tank and they'd send me another bottle cause something should have been happening by now (still waiting for that replacement).

TIMELINE (rough, not exact):
August 12 (I believe this was 1 day after adding the bacteria):
pH 7.8
Ammonia Around 2.0 (maybe 3.0 it seemed slightly darker than 2.0 but not as dark as 4.0)

August 18:
Ammonia 2.0-3.0
Nitrites 0.25
Nitrates 10

August 20:
Ammonia 1.0 (maybe slightly over but colour looked closer to 1.0)
Nitrites 0.50
Nitrates 15

August 22 (today):
pH 8.0
Ammonia 1.0 (again, maybe slightly over but colour looked like 1.0)
Nitrites 1.0
Nitrates 20

So since August 18 my Ammonia went down by half between 18th and 20th but same between 20th and 22nd;
My Nitrites have doubled ever 2 days roughly;
My Nitrates have went up about 5 every 2 days roughly.

I assume everything looks good and on track? But I'm confused why the Ammonia is not lower by now or even completely gone. I'm also wondering based on this pattern/these parameters (I know it's impossible to say for sure but just spitballing?) roughly what I can expect for the rest of my cycle. Should Ammonia be gone soon? Should the cycle be over soon or still take another 1-2 weeks?

Also worth noting I'm doing a fishless cycle, 55 Gallon Aquarium, about 20lbs of Dry Rock and 8lbs of that purple LifeRock, about 42 lbs of Arragonite, only 2 Sicce Pumps on each side of tank on, hang on back filters off (I have a 70gallon filter and a 30 gallon filter cause didnt feel like buying a bigger filter and used what I head around from old freshwater setups), heater on around 77 (had a few days it was closer to 80 trying to calibrate my heater correctly), I don't have no protein skimmer yet, I'm not using a sump, no UV, etc.. Hoping to add a couple Clowns, Skunk Shrimp, and a few Trochus and Nassarius Snails as soon as this thing will finally cycle!

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