TheWB’s IM Lagoon 50

tharbin

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I started dosing All For Reef 3 nights ago, 4ml per day, although I fell asleep on the couch and forgot to do it last night. About to do some testing and see where I’m at. Xenia monster has been out of the tank since yesterday afternoon. I know that was keeping my nitrates suppressed so that will be an interesting one to watch as well, even just a day later.
I'm interested in your All For Reef results. My tank is just getting to where I need to start dosing alk and calc (I'm already dosing mag). I used ESV Bi-Ionic in the past but I like the idea of All For Reef.
 
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TheWB

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Todays test results.
NO3 = 7.8
PO4 = 0.03
Cal = 410
Alk = 7.8
Mag = 1320

Alk and Cal are now a little lower than my targets so starting AFR at the right time I think. I’ll just use the recommended starting point of 5ml per 25g per day and see how it goes for a week. Actually probably just 5ml total each day and adjust from there, my actual volume is 37g but better to start slowly. I’ll try to test again mid week but that just depends on how busy work is.
 
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TheWB

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I'm interested in your All For Reef results. My tank is just getting to where I need to start dosing alk and calc (I'm already dosing mag). I used ESV Bi-Ionic in the past but I like the idea of All For Reef.
I could probably still get away with just doing a water change but since I’m seeing more regular consumption now I thought I’d give AFR a try. Everyone seems to like it and if you’re going to dose then why mess with multiple things if you can just do one.
 

Woodyman

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I could probably still get away with just doing a water change but since I’m seeing more regular consumption now I thought I’d give AFR a try. Everyone seems to like it and if you’re going to dose then why mess with multiple things if you can just do one.

My thoughts as well! How frequently do you plan on testing... My first week with AFR I went with the recommend amount and didn't test until the end of the week.... Everything was fine but I was definitely on the high side for alk, Ca, and Mg. I skipped a few days and cut it in half. I'm at about 2/3 of the recommend amount on my 20g frag at the moment, but it's not heavy demand at the moment.
 
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TheWB

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My thoughts as well! How frequently do you plan on testing... My first week with AFR I went with the recommend amount and didn't test until the end of the week.... Everything was fine but I was definitely on the high side for alk, Ca, and Mg. I skipped a few days and cut it in half. I'm at about 2/3 of the recommend amount on my 20g frag at the moment, but it's not heavy demand at the moment.
I’m never gonna be someone who tests every day, I just don’t have the time. I’m going to try and do at least an Alk test mid week to see where it’s at and then my regular testing schedule next weekend. I’m using less than the recommended beginning dose so I shouldn’t get too far off. I may even back it down to 4ml instead of 5.
 
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TheWB

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Today’s test results after 1 week of dosing AFR.
NO3 = 6.1 down from 7.8
PO4 = 0.06 up from 0.03
Cal = 430 up from 410
Alk = 8.0 up from 7.8
Mag = 1320, no change from last week.

Cal, Alk and Mag are all pretty much exactly where I want them to be so that’s encouraging. I dosed 4ml of AFR every day on 37 gal of actual water volume, except I think I missed a day. I’m going to lower the dose to 3ml per day and see if things remain steady for next weekends testing. Since 4ml slightly raised everything I think 3ml should hold things steady, we’ll see.

Was expecting higher NO3 since I removed the giant pulsing Xenia monster. I did put the skimmer back up to 22 hrs a day to compensate. Since I’d like it to land around 10 I’ll cut the skimmer back a couple of hours and see how that shakes out in a week. PO4 is rising and I think that’s just the tank telling me to change the Chemipure elite out. I run the undersized 6.5oz bag in the overflow. I could probably do with changing the filter pad more often as well, #lazyreefer

Torch, Trumpet and Branching Cyphastrea as well as all of the sps pieces are growing except the little piece of what is either a thick branched green Birdsnest or a stylo, I can’t tell what it is, which does nothing. I need to move it somewhere but there’s not a good place for it at the moment. The Goni is the only lps that isn’t doing much. It looks ok, just isn’t growing, I need to target feed it more. The Bubblegum Digi is two frags now instead of one because I broke it. It was mad for a while but it’s starting to show the underlying blue color again so I think its recovering. Overall things are looking pretty good this week.
 

tharbin

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Today’s test results after 1 week of dosing AFR.
NO3 = 6.1 down from 7.8
PO4 = 0.06 up from 0.03
Cal = 430 up from 410
Alk = 8.0 up from 7.8
Mag = 1320, no change from last week.

Cal, Alk and Mag are all pretty much exactly where I want them to be so that’s encouraging. I dosed 4ml of AFR every day on 37 gal of actual water volume, except I think I missed a day. I’m going to lower the dose to 3ml per day and see if things remain steady for next weekends testing. Since 4ml slightly raised everything I think 3ml should hold things steady, we’ll see.

Was expecting higher NO3 since I removed the giant pulsing Xenia monster. I did put the skimmer back up to 22 hrs a day to compensate. Since I’d like it to land around 10 I’ll cut the skimmer back a couple of hours and see how that shakes out in a week. PO4 is rising and I think that’s just the tank telling me to change the Chemipure elite out. I run the undersized 6.5oz bag in the overflow. I could probably do with changing the filter pad more often as well, #lazyreefer

Torch, Trumpet and Branching Cyphastrea as well as all of the sps pieces are growing except the little piece of what is either a thick branched green Birdsnest or a stylo, I can’t tell what it is, which does nothing. I need to move it somewhere but there’s not a good place for it at the moment. The Goni is the only lps that isn’t doing much. It looks ok, just isn’t growing, I need to target feed it more. The Bubblegum Digi is two frags now instead of one because I broke it. It was mad for a while but it’s starting to show the underlying blue color again so I think its recovering. Overall things are looking pretty good this week.
Looks like the AFR is working pretty well. I chickened out and went with ATI Essentials Pro for now. I don't remember if you mentioned it or not but are you using the liquid or mixing the powder AFR?
 

Woodyman

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Today’s test results after 1 week of dosing AFR.
NO3 = 6.1 down from 7.8
PO4 = 0.06 up from 0.03
Cal = 430 up from 410
Alk = 8.0 up from 7.8
Mag = 1320, no change from last week.

Cal, Alk and Mag are all pretty much exactly where I want them to be so that’s encouraging. I dosed 4ml of AFR every day on 37 gal of actual water volume, except I think I missed a day. I’m going to lower the dose to 3ml per day and see if things remain steady for next weekends testing. Since 4ml slightly raised everything I think 3ml should hold things steady, we’ll see.

Was expecting higher NO3 since I removed the giant pulsing Xenia monster. I did put the skimmer back up to 22 hrs a day to compensate. Since I’d like it to land around 10 I’ll cut the skimmer back a couple of hours and see how that shakes out in a week. PO4 is rising and I think that’s just the tank telling me to change the Chemipure elite out. I run the undersized 6.5oz bag in the overflow. I could probably do with changing the filter pad more often as well, #lazyreefer

Torch, Trumpet and Branching Cyphastrea as well as all of the sps pieces are growing except the little piece of what is either a thick branched green Birdsnest or a stylo, I can’t tell what it is, which does nothing. I need to move it somewhere but there’s not a good place for it at the moment. The Goni is the only lps that isn’t doing much. It looks ok, just isn’t growing, I need to target feed it more. The Bubblegum Digi is two frags now instead of one because I broke it. It was mad for a while but it’s starting to show the underlying blue color again so I think its recovering. Overall things are looking pretty good this week.

One note I'll throw out, and this may be in previous pages so sorry if it's already been thrown out, but what test kits are you using? Ca from 410 to 430, and alk from 7.8 to 8.0 may be within the error range.

With that I think you would be safe with another week of 4ml dosing everyday. Just keep track if you skip a day or not this week! :rolling-on-the-floor-laughing: if you do decide to reduce can you go with 3.5mls? Or are you limited to whole mls?
 
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TheWB

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Looks like the AFR is working pretty well. I chickened out and went with ATI Essentials Pro for now. I don't remember if you mentioned it or not but are you using the liquid or mixing the powder AFR?
It seems to be working well. I’m using the premixed stuff. I’m too lazy to whip up a batch on my own. That may change later but the premixed stuff is pretty affordable to where I’m not going to worry about it. I think it was $14.99 for 500ml. That will last me a while.
 
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TheWB

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One note I'll throw out, and this may be in previous pages so sorry if it's already been thrown out, but what test kits are you using? Ca from 410 to 430, and alk from 7.8 to 8.0 may be within the error range.

With that I think you would be safe with another week of 4ml dosing everyday. Just keep track if you skip a day or not this week! :rolling-on-the-floor-laughing: if you do decide to reduce can you go with 3.5mls? Or are you limited to whole mls?
I’m using Hanna checkers for alk, no3 and po4, Red Sea for cal and Salifert for mag. In some cases the results are within the margin of error but that’s ok. Just looking for stability, not perfection. These kits aren’t good enough for anything other than a good ballpark reading. I could measure to 3.5 but I don’t want to use a syringe. I’ll try 3ml this week and see if I need to tweak it again.
 

tharbin

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It seems to be working well. I’m using the premixed stuff. I’m too lazy to whip up a batch on my own. That may change later but the premixed stuff is pretty affordable to where I’m not going to worry about it. I think it was $14.99 for 500ml. That will last me a while.
Part of the reason I went with ATI Essentials Pro was that the LFS I was at only had the powder. It was like 40 dollars but it would have lasted me through 2055 or maybe beyond. Seemed a bit of a waste and more work than I cared to do.
 

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Part of the reason I went with ATI Essentials Pro was that the LFS I was at only had the powder. It was like 40 dollars but it would have lasted me through 2055 or maybe beyond. Seemed a bit of a waste and more work than I cared to do.

I bought the powder, I haven't even used all of my first mix yet... Gotta be going on 6 months for me! Have at least 1/2+ left.
 
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Part of the reason I went with ATI Essentials Pro was that the LFS I was at only had the powder. It was like 40 dollars but it would have lasted me through 2055 or maybe beyond. Seemed a bit of a waste and more work than I cared to do.
My lfs has the premixed in all three sizes siting on the shelf in quantity. I think they sell a lot of the premixed. I didn’t want the powder the first time because it would have been way too much if I ended up not liking it. I just wanted the smaller amount to begin with but unless my needs change I’ll probably just stick with the premixed.
 

Woodyman

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My lfs has the premixed in all three sizes siting on the shelf in quantity. I think they see a lot of the premixed. I didn’t want the powder the first time because it would have been way too much if I ended up not liking it. I just wanted the smaller amount to begin with but unless my needs change I’ll probably just stick with the premixed.

My LFS is the opposite, no premix to be found, only powder
 
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TheWB

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I bought the powder, I haven't even used all of my first mix yet... Gotta be going on 6 months for me! Have at least 1/2+ left.
Yeah, just didn’t want to mess with all that yet.
 
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Soooooo……..we picked out a new house and have started the process of buying it and selling our house. It’s new construction and will be ready around 6/17. That means lots of work around the house to get it ready to sell and it also means formulating a plan to move my current tank and prepare for the upgrade to a larger tank. I’m not crazy enough to try and coordinate upgrading during the move so the Lagoon 50 will be staying in service for a while longer. I’m going to have a local maintenance company actually do the transport of the fish, coral, tank and stand. I will have everything prepped ahead of time so that they can just come in and start filling buckets, catching fish and generally just getting stuff moved the 2-3 miles and set up again as quickly as possible. I’m thinking that I’ll put all the rock back in to the lagoon but not the sand. I’ll go bare bottom until the new tank arrives and gets put into place. This will give me a chance to work on a new scape without any pressure to finish in a limited amount of time. I will be putting the old tank in the same room where the new one will go but in a different location. That way when the new one arrives I don’t have to move the old one out of the way. The new location will be a spare bedroom that I will use as an office so I’ll just do a temporary setup like I’m doing now until the new tank is installed and then I’ll finish the room afterwards. That way I’ll have lots of room to work.
The room I’ll be using is next to a bathroom and that’s got me thinking about putting a hole through the wall and running a line into the drain in there. Then I’ll put a pump in my sump and I’ll be able to pump old water directly out of the sump and down the drain without buckets. My wife will hate everything about this idea but I’m making it happen. There’s no room for a bigger water mixing station other than in the garage and the walls are already mostly finished, otherwise I’d be cooking up some different ideas on how to fully automate a water change by running the plumbing during framing. Lost opportunity because the house is so far along.

I’m leaning towards upgrading to a 48x24x16 acrylic tank on an aluminum profile stand. The tank will again be on the second floor so this will be a way to keep the weight down since I’m going bigger. I want to carefully choose a sump that can accommodate a RedSea 7” reefmat instead of using socks or other mechanical filtration. I might even just go 40b with a baffle kit. I don’t really need the sump to be all tricked out, just 3 good sized chambers for the reefmat, a skimmer and extra Biological filtration and a return section. Nothing fancy.

I’m choosing the 48x24 footprint and the 16” depth (which is what I have now) so that I don’t have to significantly add to my lighting. The two Reefi Unos will either get supplemented by a third Uno or by a couple of the led strips that have become popular. I’m going to have to see how the light mount over the tank turns out and then decide how to proceed. Lots of stuff to think about but I think I've got a pretty good outline of a plan.
 
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TheWB

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I missed a week of testing but continued to add 4ml of All For Reef and the results were as follows.
Alk down from 7.8 on 4/17 to 7.3 on 5/1
Cal down from 430 to 425
Mag down from 1320 to 1275
So Calcium stayed pretty stable but I dropped both Alk and Mag. I would have expected a similar drop in Calcium to the other two but it didn’t happen. It will be interesting to see if this is a one off or if it becomes a trend. I guess two or three more weeks of testing will reveal that. I’m upping the dose of AFR to try and get Alk more stable at 8. I guess the tank is consuming more than I expected.
Nitrate was down from 6 to 2.4 so I really need to keep up on adding that, don’t want to bottom out.
Phosphate dropped from 0.06 to 0.04 so that’s fine.

I think after the move I’m going to get a couple of dosers for AFR and for Nitrate. I’m too forgetful to do these by hand much longer.
I’m also going to try out dosing some phyto which I’m getting from here
Does not need to be refrigerated so I thought I’d give it a go and see if my corals respond in a positive way.
 
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TheWB

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Been dosing the new Phyto for a little over a week now. Can’t say I’ve noticed anything different with my corals or the amount of film that builds up on the glass so far. I’ve upped the amount quite a bit, I think I dosed 30ml this morning. I’ll continue to use it until it runs out. Not sure if I’ll get more. Just see how it goes I guess.

House is now sold and it’s looking like closing date on the new one will be 6/17 so it’s time to start planning the tank move. I’ve got two big bags of Seachem matrix ready to go in and get some extra bacteria seeded to help with setting back up temporarily at the new house without sand. I don’t see the need to try and save the sand or get new sand when I’m going to upgrade soon.
 
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tharbin

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Been dosing the new Phyto for a little over a week now. Can’t say I’ve noticed anything different with my corals or the amount of film that builds up on the glass so far. I’ve upped the amount quite a bit, I think I dosed 30ml this morning. I’ll continue to use it until it runs out. Not sure if I’ll get more. Just see how it goes I guess.

House is now sold and it’s looking like closing date on the new one will be 6/17 so it’s time to start planning the tank move. I’ve got two big bags of Seachem matrix ready to go in and get some extra bacteria seeded to help with setting back up temporarily at the new house without sand. I don’t see the need to try and save the sand or get new sand when I’m going to upgrade soon.
I started dosing phyto about five months ago and dose it (almost) every day. I started with 1ml/gallon of the phyto from @Eldredge. I now dose 2ml-2.5ml/gallon. I don't know that I can say I see a difference but the tank just 'feels' more dialed in. I've had cyano 'challenges' (opportunities?) for six months now. I don't actively fight it other than blowing it off the rocks when it encroaches on a coral or maybe grab a mat or two during a water change. I started the phyto mainly to compete with the cyano and the GHA (mainly gone now except for a small patch I just keep trimmed. While it did not eliminate either 'pest' I feel it has prevented them from taking over and everything just looks a little happier. It could just be me trying to rationalize the expense but I'm going to keep doing it.

I also dose some copepods from @Eldredge occasionally, some Reef Nutrition Tigger Pods about once a quarter and Reef Stew (a locally produced phyto/copepod/brine shrimp mix) every month or two. It makes me feel good. I know my Nassarius snails and micro brittle stars seem to appreciate it.
 
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