Rock conundrum

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Daenion

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I read through a lot of threads and still cannot make up my mind . Total volume of the system will be 140g and display will be roughly 110g. I want to get live rock but not sure how successful the transport will be given where I live. LFS sells live rock from a tub but it is about 15-16 dollars a lb which is a bit much since they do not guarantee no pests. I presume I will need at least 100lb of rock. So the question is should I do all live or mix or just dry and grow some bacteria and chest hair at the same time. If I buy live rock I was thinking about using KP aquatics or the lfs if people say that might be a good idea.
 
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EricR

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Tough call, eh?
I'm cheap (sometimes) so don't think I could justify the price of that much live rock.

I'm about 50/50 on dry vs live rock in my current tank (but it's only 40-50 lbs in a 40 gallon).

My quick take just based on that one experience is:
Dry rock sucks!

Just kidding, sort of,,, but I won't just rinse and throw dry rock into a tank again without at least curing (or whatever the right term is) first in a separate bin. *if I do it again, I'd probably go dedicated tank/bin with lighting aimed at some coralline growth first for a couple of months and, of course the normal bacteria population.
 

MaxTremors

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If you can’t afford all live rock, I would do mostly dry and then seed it with 20 pounds of KP or Gulf live rock. Personally, I wouldn’t worry too much about pests, I would put the live rock in a tub or tank for a few weeks with a power head, heater, and light to observe it for mantis shrimp, crabs, or other pests that might be an issue. IME, the bacterial and microfauna diversity of real live rock is indispensable, personally I will never use dry rock again (the only instance I would consider it is in a big tank using it as base rock). For me, all the life that comes on good live rock is half the fun of a reef tank (I find myself looking at my refugium as much as I look at the display), for me, a sterile, dry rock only tank would be boring.
 
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HuduVudu

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I read through a lot of threads and still cannot make up my mind . Total volume of the system will be 140g and display will be roughly 110g. I want to get live rock but not sure how successful the transport will be given where I live. LFS sells live rock from a tub but it is about 15-16 dollars a lb which is a bit much since they do not guarantee no pests. I presume I will need at least 100lb of rock. So the question is should I do all live or mix or just dry and grow some bacteria and chest hair at the same time. If I buy live rock I was thinking about using KP aquatics or the lfs if people say that might be a good idea.
I would NEVER buy "live" rock from an LFS. Better to buy it direct and then cure it in a seperate tank and work on the pests from there.
 

LiverockRocks

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Price is not a huge issue as long as it is worth it. And if it is worth it which one. The one from LFS or KP.
KP or TBS
...biodiversity on Ocean aquacultured live rock can’t be beat.
 
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Freddy0144

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Daenion,​

So I think the pro's and Con's have been covered, ultimately, I think it boils down to how patient are you? I like the idea of dry rock as we know there are no hitchhikers, but this process takes time to grow the bacteria out and you have to pick a method to cycle the tank and then wait months to start growing Coraline Algae.

Personally, I plan on using this time to learn how stable the tank is going to be and let it go through its ugly phase. Knowing that I am going to battle green algae, dino's Cyano etc. Once past this stage the tank should start to settle in I should have identified the balance for Calcium and Alk two part and what needs to be dosed daily.

If you use live rock you will lose the ability to create an aquascape by gluing the rocks and such because they need to stay wet or the decay process will begin.

I personally, dont mind taking it slow, this is not my first tank and I am looking for a long term system that is simple and stable.
 
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