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Introduction AND heavy questions.

Discussion in 'General Reef Discussions' started by DeepWater1, Oct 25, 2014.

  1. DeepWater1
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    Hey all. I actually was a member years ago, back when this was an arm of Reef Central (2006; 2008??). Went to a few of the meetings at the zoo and that was ALWAYS a good time!! Anyway, I fell out of favor with an RC mod who made it difficult to be engaged in the hobby as a nube running a new, first time SW tank. After a while, I made some mistakes and things started dying. Unable to figure out what went wrong and busy trying to keep up with life while starting a new business, the tank basically became a 75 gallon rectangle of saltwater. It was shut down and just sat for a long time, then most of the water was removed except what covered the sand bed. Fast forward a few years...

    So here's where I am today: I have a 90G tank and a 30G sump I purchased from a member back in '08. Along the way, I collected a CPR fuge light, an ASM G-3 skimmer; a Mag 18 and a Pondmaster Mag 15 pumps. I have boxes of items I bought but never used. I am 'preparing' to relaunch a new tank in the not too distant future and have some specific questions:

    1. I have all the former live rock which was put in a covered plastic garbage can and has been inside the house (room temp) for a few years now. Obviously, it is very dry and assumed dead.

    Do I need to give it a bleach or vinegar bath and rinse, or is O.K. to use as is?

    2. I have all the sand in another covered garbage can. It was wet when put in there and is still quite wet today as it has about an inch of water on top of it.

    Can it be cleaned and reused? If so, how?

    I intend to set the tank up and let it cycle for months, if needed before adding anything of note.

    Thanks in advance for all the advice/help I can get!!
     
  2. davesfish
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    If it was me,i would not reuse that old sand !
     
  3. codemonkey812
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    I have similar issues with RC when I was getting started. Luckily for me I found C-Sea quickly. I agree with starting with new sand, I like the bio-active sand to speed up the cycling process. I would rinse the rock very well and use it.
     
  4. Travenous
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    The rock is fine to use, but I would recommend a muratic acid bath. It will remove any organic waste from the rock that will otherwise rot in your tank and cause nutrient issues. If you want additional information on how to acid bath the rock, let me know.

    Don't use the sand, buy some new stuff.
     
  5. DeepWater1
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    O.K. So I need to figure out what to do with the old sand. Wonder if I dry it out can I use it on the lawn...

    Travenous, I did some searching regarding the acid bath you recommend and boy does that look extreme!! While I would listen to advice on doing it, I'm really not sure I want to play crazy chemical man in my driveway. Not to mention what in my yard will get burned in the process.

    As this rock has been dry for at least 4 years, can I get away with vinegar or bleach instead? I would feel much more comfortable 'playing' with either of those. FYI, I cleaned the tank and all the accessories with pure vinegar and was amazed at how well that cleaned 4+ year old crust off of everything!
     
  6. erm213
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    Welcome to the forum!

    You can neutralize the acid with baking soda, and it will not hurt your lawn. It is nasty stuff, but taking proper precautions, it can be fine. You could also buy a bunch of new rock from our October meeting presenter, Paul West of West Mariculture. He makes rock, and can tailor to your needs. No worries or pests or excess nutrients.

    Erik
     
  7. Travenous
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    It does indeed sound extreme, but as Erik pointed out, you can neutralize any un-used acid with baking soda. When I have done it, I let it sit for about an hour. By then the fizzing has stopped meaning that the acid has been neutralized. I then add baking soda just to make sure and then take the rock out and soak it in plain water. The leftovers that you have left are a salty solution. While I wouldn't dump it in my yard I wouldn't hesitate to splash it on the driveway. Muratic acid is used to remove stains on concrete, so while it is an acid, it's nothing that's going to get you into too much trouble.
     
  8. skinny fish
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    Welcome back. I have started two systems now with Reef Cleaners rock seeded with a small piece of live rock. Takes a little more than a year to fully colonize with organisms, takes longer to grow coralline algae. It can support coral and fish after about 4-6 weeks. best part about Reef Cleaner rock is it doesn't need cycling and can go straight into your tank after a rinse to remove dust (neutralize chlorine if tap water is used). Also doesn't seem to allow algae to grow on it for years after set up. Just guessing but I bet this is because it doesn't hold any phosphates. John at Reef Cleaners will provide you with personal phone support for any questions.

    OK, sounds like I work for them. I don't just thought I'd share the positive experience I've had with the product.
     
  9. tcat3rd
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    I believe Kreeger posted a picture of his rock bubbling in a plastic container on reef central! Northern Ohio Reef Keepers is the site there! In the pic , you can see the bottle of acid and on the label it says something like new safer version or similar to that! I used regular muratic acid, it is also pretty cheap!
    Peace
     
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