Test results are in and its not looking good! Any advice?

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Ralph Ritoch

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It looks like the ocean water seems OK.

PH: 8.4
Ammonia: 0.25 PPM
Nitrate: 0
Nitrite: 0

That incoming ammonia is probably not so helpful.
 
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Hemmdog

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It looks like the ocean water seems OK.

PH: 8.4
Ammonia: 0.25 PPM
Nitrate: 0
Nitrite: 0

That incoming ammonia is probably not so helpful.
Alk, cal, mag, salinity are what we are looking for with ocean/reef water samples.
 
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Ralph Ritoch

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Idk if you want my honest opinion I think the only way you can turn this around is to seriously listen to the advise people gave you on the other thread, the info people gave you was right. Get your salinity up to 1.025, trust your hydrometer since you don’t have a refractometer, drop your temp to 78F, remove all filtration stuff, clean it, put in fresh filter floss, don’t put the green one in, make sure the salinity stays steady at 1.025, no fluctuations at all. Stop using prime or any chemical, let it do it’s thing. You also need a major light upgrade. What you said about the ocean water having all the elements in correct proportion also isn’t factual unfortunately, most people that use ocean water have to add alk, cal, mag, and usually raise the salinity slightly. Unless your collecting water from thriving reefs elements will not be correct in most cases. If your salinity is that low from your collections you can already predict this to be true.

I do listen to all of the advise and implement what seems rational. Removing the live sand, adding more lighting, 10% water change, cleaning the entire tank of detritus. The ocean water is coming in at about 1.018 SG which is why I'm worried about raising it much above 1.022
 

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I do listen to all of the advise and implement what seems rational. Removing the live sand, adding more lighting, 10% water change, cleaning the entire tank of detritus. The ocean water is coming in at about 1.018 SG which is why I'm worried about raising it much above 1.022
Where are you collecting it from that it’s that low? Either way it needs to get up to 1.025.
 
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Ralph Ritoch

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Alk, cal, mag, salinity are what we are looking for with ocean/reef water samples.
I have no tests for Alk, Cal, mag, yet. The SG is 1.022 and temp about 30C. I was advised to do the 10% water change with 1.030 SG so that is what I'm going to try. Its too late I already added 1/2 cap of prime for the Amonia.
 
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Ralph Ritoch

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Where are you collecting it from that it’s that low? Either way it needs to get up to 1.025.
The port is within a mile of a river and it is rainy season. The rain and the river are what I suspect is the reason and hoping the hydrometer isn't completely wrong.
 

Hemmdog

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The port is within a mile of a river and it is rainy season. The rain and the river are what I suspect is the reason and hoping the hydrometer isn't completely wrong.
By design they can’t be wrong, just difficult to read.
 

Rilo

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It looks like the ocean water seems OK.

PH: 8.4
Ammonia: 0.25 PPM
Nitrate: 0
Nitrite: 0

That incoming ammonia is probably not so helpful.
I feel you're going about reef keeping with a freshwater perspective.

Reef keeping is a different beast when it comes to aquariums. There are some things that we share with the freshwater hobby but for the most part it's best to start at 0 when entering this one.

I'd recommend reading the comment P-Dub left again. Most of it will cover why you are having issues as well as ways to tackle them. Otherwise the hobby will be a expensive frustration rather then a joy.

Ralph, thanks for the tidbits of information. Based soley on what you have stated, you are nowhere near ready for coral. If that coral makes it, I'd be amazed. I STRONGLY suggest that you head over to...
New to Saltwater & Reef Aquariums? Post Here
Then pay special attention to the "Stickie" particularly...
Cycling an Aquarium
The beneficial bacteria in a freshwater system, for the most part, do not live in a marine environment
Additionally...
The Supreme Guide To Setting Up A Saltwater Reef Aquarium
and, finally...
Beginners Guide to Acclimation and Quarantine
Best of luck.
 
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Ligeia

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Hi Ralph!

I don't think your tank is doomed! It just needs a little more time!

I see you're based out of the Philippines! I loved it there when I visited for my honeymoon. As I recall, you have lots of pristine ocean water available right there! What island are you based on? I don't think adding sand from your local water is a terrible idea to kick that nitrogen cycle into high gear!

That being said, I'd recommend swapping out your old FW filter media. Also maybe get rid of all those old aquarium marbles and whatnot. They are gonna just store up detritus :)

You don't NEED a skimmer right now but it would be a good investment for your future.
 
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At least there is some good news today. www.iquaticsonline.co.uk just contacted me and confirmed they'll ship internationally. That nearly doubles the chances of this tank surviving, to about 2%
 

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By design they can’t be wrong, just difficult to read.
Hydrometers can be wrong and yes, also hard to read. I used to use one way back in the day. The swinging arm can get salt in it and you have to swing it manually until it sticks. But then you shake it and it moves up or down. Quite frustrating. Refractometers are the only thing I use now.
 

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At least there is some good news today. www.iquaticsonline.co.uk just contacted me and confirmed they'll ship internationally. That nearly doubles the chances of this tank surviving, to about 2%
You’re in the Philippines right? I’m across the water in Hong Kong. Literally an hour away. If you’re really interested, I can see if shops here can ship to you. I can also help to facilitate it. I’m sure shipping and price of goods is much cheaper coming from Hong Kong. Also, I have some coral dealers from the Philippines. You could probably get some amazing corals. A lot of my corals came from PI.
 

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Hydrometers can be wrong and yes, also hard to read. I used to use one way back in the day. The swinging arm can get salt in it and you have to swing it manually until it sticks. But then you shake it and it moves up or down. Quite frustrating. Refractometers are the only thing I use now.
Oh really? Didn’t think of that. In theory though it’s just based on buoyancy in different salinities though correct?
 
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Ralph Ritoch

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You’re in the Philippines right? I’m across the water in Hong Kong. Literally an hour away. If you’re really interested, I can see if shops here can ship to you. I can also help to facilitate it. I’m sure shipping and price of goods is much cheaper coming from Hong Kong. Also, I have some coral dealers from the Philippines. You could probably get some amazing corals. A lot of my corals came from PI.
Thank you. Please PM me. I am looking for suppliers since Lazada doesn't have what I need and their delivery times are horrible. Won't be adding bio-load for at least a month or two and I have a local supplier for LED light, but for virtually everything else I have no supplier. I am looking at iquatics for salt but that is it. Things I'm looking for includes bulkheads, overflow, pumps, reactors, cheatobacteria, etc. If this tank survives 6 months I intend to upgrade to a larger tank with sump but there are no suppliers so filling that tank is going to be a problem.
 

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Thank you. Please PM me. I am looking for suppliers since Lazada doesn't have what I need and their delivery times are horrible. Won't be adding bio-load for at least a month or two and I have a local supplier for LED light, but for virtually everything else I have no supplier. I am looking at iquatics for salt but that is it. Things I'm looking for includes bulkheads, overflow, pumps, reactors, cheatobacteria, etc. If this tank survives 6 months I intend to upgrade to a larger tank with sump but there are no suppliers so filling that tank is going to be a problem.
Make a list of what you need. (Perhaps ask someone here). I will let you know if it’s available and the cost. For salt, it’s heavy to ship. I don’t mind helping you but you’ll definitely have to pay a lot for shipping.

I buy my salt from these guys. They also have an ok selection. The prices are in HK dollars. $1 USD equals $7.75 HKD. The HKD is pegged to the USD so it doesn’t fluctuate. PM me and I can give you more info
 
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I've added half a cap of Prime, and did a 10% water change with live water with added synthetic salt to bring salinity from 1.018 to 1.030 in the source, and 1.024 in the tank. I removed any detritus and brown algae from the sand, and I'm quite sure I wiped out a baby colony of sponge in the process. The sponge came free with the ocean sand and I'm not even confident that it is a sponge because it has never become solid. The one torch which was bleeching has been gone for 2 days, I suspect its gone forever. It has about 1 to 2 mm of tentacles showing but I've seen that happen on another torch that only had about 5 tentacles remaining and it died within days. The remaining 4 torches, star coral, and clownfish, seem to be thriving. If they last a few more weeks I'll upgrade to LED.
 

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I've added half a cap of Prime, and did a 10% water change with live water with added synthetic salt to bring salinity from 1.018 to 1.030 in the source, and 1.024 in the tank. I removed any detritus and brown algae from the sand, and I'm quite sure I wiped out a baby colony of sponge in the process. The sponge came free with the ocean sand and I'm not even confident that it is a sponge because it has never become solid. The one torch which was bleeching has been gone for 2 days, I suspect its gone forever. It has about 1 to 2 mm of tentacles showing but I've seen that happen on another torch that only had about 5 tentacles remaining and it died within days. The remaining 4 torches, star coral, and clownfish, seem to be thriving. If they last a few more weeks I'll upgrade to LED.
Did your sponge look like this?
F7903A6B-5920-4B4D-84AC-BAACD86A2A5F.jpeg
 

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I said this in another thread, but it bears repeating


What is dead may never die



it's positive, negative or neutral depending how you look at it

I too converted a FW (brackish) tank to Marine, my advice is to increase aeration significantly while the cycle is working. Get some bubbles going in there. Some air exchange.
 
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