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  1. #1
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    Upgrading Tank - Best method?

    Hello all, I have been preparing to upgrade my 55G tank to a 90G (48x18x24) for a few weeks now and I think I am just about ready. I was hoping to run my plan by you guys who have probably done this or can comment if I am missing or doing anything wrong. The new tank is going into the same spot as the current 55.

    - I've got 50G of new salt water made - SG 1.023 / CA 480. Water is circulating with power heads and temp is 76 degrees. Same as my current water parameters.

    Plan (in this order):
    - Empty 55G water into holding bins.
    - Move livestock into a smaller container with some of the 55G water
    - Move rocks (80lbs) to a holding bin with some of the 55G water

    - Move old tank and stand out
    - Move new tank and stand in

    - Adding 40LBS of new aragonite reef sand to new tank.
    - Remove old reef sand and place on top of the new sand.

    - Setup 220 Coralife Skimmer (existing) / canister filter (new)/ heater (existing) / coralife 2x250W MH canopy (new) / PH and SG Pinpoint monitors (new).

    - Add 55G old water to tank

    - Add live rock

    - Add new salt water to tank

    - Test water to ensure all is well

    - Turn on equipment. Test for leaks etc.

    - Let run for a few hours.

    - Add live stock back to the new tank. Using the bag method of floating and adding new tank water to the bag slowly.

    - Plan on keeping the lights off overnight until then next day


    How does this plan sound?

  2. #2
    Senior Member percula99's Avatar
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    The plan sounds good. When you say livestock, are you meaning fish and corals? When moving the livestock, try to put clean water from your tank into the container you are housing them in. Don't wait until you have emptied out the tank of all the rock as you will have stirred up debris which will be floating in the water and will be introduced in the holding tank. Also remember to have plenty of circulation in the holding tanks to oxygenate the water. Good luck with the upgrade.

  3. #3
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    Yes, I've got 4 fish and 3 corals. I will take the livestock water out first. Good point on that.

    How long could I theoretically keep my livestock in a holding container with a powerhead in there?

    Just thinking if I had a problem, could they live in there for 1 day?

  4. #4
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    I would expect with a powerhead and a heater you would be OK, depending on the volume of water in the container. I used 20G rubbermaid containers for my upgrade and it worked well.

    One thing to consider - when I did my upgrade it was suggested to me that I dispose of the existing aragonite bed because you will stirring it up (anaerobic becoming aerobic) and that this could cause a massive die off in the sand bed and all the problems that ensues.

    I took a couple pounds off the top of my existing sandbed to seed the new sand bed.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Bram's Avatar
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    I used rubbermaids as well, i didn't have a problem with changing over the complete sandbed. i think partly because i transferred my existing filters, and had the new ones on the old tank for a few weeks before the transfer took place.
    One thing that i really find helpful is using a bottle of "cycle" its safe, speeds the cycle up and you cant overdose.
    my two cents
    Good luck
    Who says Dogs are the only creature that's happy to see you?

    Pics --> http://aquariacanada.com/PhotoPost/s...r=1248&cat=500

  6. #6
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    Who makes "cycle"? I never had to cycle a tank as I got mine established already.

    I was thinking I needed to bring over my existing sandbed so that a cycle would not start. If I might potential cause damage with bringing the old to the new then why bother? I've got a 40lbs bag, not sure how many inches that gives me for a 48x18 but if that enough, I'll just skip on the old sandbed.

    Yeah I'm doing the rubbermaid 25G container thing too. I've got 4 of them.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Bram's Avatar
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    bring the sandbed
    cycle is bacteria in a bottle, if bacteria starts to die off it will replace and remove toxins
    Who says Dogs are the only creature that's happy to see you?

    Pics --> http://aquariacanada.com/PhotoPost/s...r=1248&cat=500

  8. #8
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    This stuff?
    http://www.amazon.com/Hagen-Cycle-Bi.../dp/B00068JTEO


    Now I have to find someone local to buy it on the way home. I was planning on doing all of this tonight...


    Thanks for the help!

  9. #9
    Senior Member percula99's Avatar
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    When I did my upgrade I went from a 100 gallon to a 180. I never had a problem with my tank cycling. It might be a good idea to vaccuum your sand bed in the old tank before making the upgrade. That way your sand bed will be as clean and alive as you can have it.

    Depending on the size of your container I think you could get away with keeping your livestock in there for a day or so no problem. Put a heater in as well as a suitable pump or power head for adequate circulation.

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